COMMENTARY | Not content with attacks on grown women, an anti-choice Republican lawmaker in Indiana has stooped to picking on little girls. Indiana State Rep. Bob Morris insisted in a letter to GOP colleagues that he had discovered through "research on the Internet" that Girl Scouts are a radical organization, a tactical arm of Planned Parenthood aimed at promoting abortion and homosexuality.
The Associated Press reports Morris' assertion was met by ridicule from fellow Republicans, including Indiana House Speaker Brian Bosma, who spent the day handing out samples of the Scouts' popular Thin Mint cookies.
Spokespeople for both organizations denied the allegations, with Planned Parenthood of Indiana calling the charges "inflammatory" and "woefully inaccurate."
Juliette Low, a Georgia mother of six, founded in 1912 the Girl Scouts of America after meeting Sir Robert Baden-Powell, founder of Boy Scouts and Girl Guides in England. From a small troop of 18 girls, Low's idea blossomed into an organization with more than 50 million alumnae today.
It's hard to imagine anyone objecting to an organization where girls hold flag ceremonies, practice sports, crafts, camping skills and first aid while promising to serve God and their country, to help people at all times and to live by the Girl Scout Law . The Law, in turn, commits the girls to being honest, fair, friendly, helpful, considerate, caring, courageous, strong and responsible. Hardly radical stuff, and abortions and sexual orientation aren't even mentioned.
Morris' attack is so heinous that adjectives fail to capture the depth of its repulsiveness. Words like vile, disgusting and reprehensible come to mind, as do the words nut job and wingnut. Women have been demonized for centuries, so frankly we're used to the occasional witch hunt. But picking on children is beyond the pale. Morris should be embarrassed and ashamed of himself. To him, I have this to say: Go pick on someone your own size.
To my sisters in scouting, know that you rock. Be strong and courageous. Don't let this bully keep you from the joys of scouting.
If the anti-choice crowd was looking for a race to the bottom, I think they've found it.
- Planned Parenthood