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Amid Protest, Boy Scouts Reaffirm Ban On Non-Nerds
IRVING, Tex. (CAP) - After a confidential two-year review, the Boy Scouts of America this week emphatically reaffirmed its policy of excluding non-nerds, angering critics who hoped that relentless protest campaigns might lead to change.
The scouts cited support from parents of nerds as a key reason for keeping the policy and expressed hope that the prolonged debate over it might now subside. Bitter reactions from jocks, greasers, stoners and other non-nerds suggested that result was unlikely.
"Dude, this stinks," said Josh Halverson, 14, of Holyoke, Mass., captain of his Pop Warner Midget football team. "Just because I can throw a football and girls like me is no reason I can't tie knots and pick up trash just like all those poindexters."
Scouting officials were adamant about the decision, however.
"Let's face it, the Boy Scouts are really the last safe haven for nerds of all stripes," said the Boy Scouts' national spokesman, Devon Smith, a grown man wearing a khaki shirt with green epaulets and an orange neckerchief. "I'm talking about geeks, dweebs, dorks, goobers, plonkers - the whole shebang."
Then he snorted and said, "Heh, shebang - that sounds dirty."
Smith told CAP News that an 11-member special committee, formed discreetly by top Boy Scout leaders in 2010, came to the conclusion that exclusion "is absolutely the best policy" for the 102-year-old organization. "At least if we want to continue to avoid wedgies."
That may be easier said than done - the recent national meeting of the Boy Scouts of America in Washington D.C. required hundreds of detail police officers to protect the scouts in attendance. Even so, dozens of scouts reported being confronted by non-nerds who'd infiltrated the event, suffering wedgies, swirlies, noogies, purple nurples and being forced to hit themselves, a practice currently banned only in Montana.
"Non-nerds are not used to being excluded from things," explained Smith, gently rubbing his own injured nurple.
Since 2000, the Boy Scouts have been targeted with numerous protest campaigns because of the membership policy. One ongoing protest involves Frank Clooney, 36, the Ohio father of a 7-year-old Cub Scout who was ousted as a den leader because he is cool.
"He thought he was so special, just because he has money and great hair and drives a Dodge Viper convertible," said Fred Loudbeck, 41, an overweight, balding Dayton-area IT supervisor who is one of the scout leaders that voted for Clooney's ouster. "Having someone like him as a den leader just penalizes the rest of us who are less cool."
Then he snorted and said, "Heh, penalize - that sounds dirty."
Asked if he could foresee a situation somewhere down the road where cool people could be admitted to the BSA, either as scouts or leaders, spokesman Smith said he couldn't imagine any kind of non-nerd presence in the group "without fundamentally changing everything the Boy Scouts stand for."
And as for gay scouts?
"Oh, definitely," said Smith. "Most of us are gay, for crying out loud."