by WorldTribune Staff, July 26, 2017
As honorary head of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA), President Donald Trump on July 24 did something his predecessor never had – speak at the annual BSA Jamboree.
The jamboree drew about 35,000 Scouts from the ages of 12 to 18 to the latest event, held in Glen Jean, West Virginia.
Trump, who said he has 10 ex-Boy Scouts in his Cabinet, “received big-time cheers” at the event, columnist Cheryl K. Chumley wrote for The Washington Times on July 25.
Former President Barack Obama – “not so much.”
Trump said to the crowd: “By the way, just a question. Did President Obama ever come to a jamboree?”
The boos followed.
“The answer is no,” Trump said.
“Night and day, ying and yang. The Boy Scouts know their friends,” Chumley wrote. “Obama made a videotape that played at the National Jamboree in 2010. But after that, he largely ignored the group – except when he could politicize it.”
In a pre-Super Bowl interview in 2013, “Obama went out of his way to pat the Boy Scouts of America chiefs on the back for their then-proposed opening of doors for gays to serve in leadership roles.”
Obama told CBS News’s Scott Pelley: “My attitude is that gays and lesbians should have access and opportunity the same way everybody else does, in every institution and walk of life. The Scouts are a great institution that are promoting young people and exposing them to opportunities and leadership that will serve people for the rest of their lives. And I think nobody should be barred from that.”
The president is the honorary head of the non-partisan BSA, which has a “simple mission of instilling values, purpose and character into the lives of the boys it serves,” Chumley wrote.
“But Obama, who spent part of his childhood with the Indonesian Scout Association, not BSA, could never quite make the jamborees.”
Trump did. And he told the crowd “we’ll be back” for the next jamboree.
“What a difference in administrations,” Chumley noted. “Obama sees gay rights; Trump, the faces of America’s future. Such a small thing. But such a loud and large message.”
Read the full transcript of Trump’s speech here