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Outraged Scouts Say “Stop Rabbit Killing!”

Written by Lindsay Pollard-Post | March 17, 2014

Update: Outraged Boy Scouts and troop leaders past and present eagerly responded to PETA’s call for help in urging the Boy Scouts of America to explicitly forbid scout leaders and all adults from teaching children to kill animals. In a letter sent March 13, 45 former and current scouts and leaders point out that “[i]n this age of bullying and school shootings, encouraging impressionable young people to hurt any living being is grossly irresponsible. The BSA should be leading the way in helping children grow into kind and responsible adults, by teaching them that violence is wrong, no matter how different from them the victim appears to be.”

Let’s hope that after hearing how strongly its own members and alumni oppose subjecting animals and children to violence, the Boy Scouts of America will finally do the right thing and ban lessons in cruelty.

Originally posted February 28, 2014:

The Boy Scouts of America’s mission is “to prepare young people to make ethical and moral choices over their lifetimes,” but one scout leader in Florida seems to have forgotten this. As part of a recent wilderness “survival” excursion with a group of boys ages 11 to 15, troop leader James Gary bludgeoned two rabbits with a stick in front of the children and then fed them the animals. Gary reportedly killed the rabbits because he thought it would be “neat.”

Wild Rabbit

 In light of this incident, PETA is urging the Boy Scouts of America to review and clarify any policy that allows scout leaders or other adults to kill animals in front of children and to make it clear that such behavior is prohibited. In a letter from PETA staffer and former Boy Scout Kenneth Montville, PETA points out that slaughtering animals is inhumane and that forcing children to witness acts of cruelty desensitizes them to violence and teaches them that it’s acceptable to hurt others who are different from or smaller than they are. Sociologists and criminologists agree that participating in cruelty to animals is often a precursor to other forms of violence as children grow up.

“Surviving” doesn’t have to involve killing. PETA encourages the Boy Scouts of America to teach scouts how to sustain themselves in the wilderness by finding edible plants. PETA is also offering help from TeachKind, our humane-education division, in crafting a new policy against killing animals.

There’s no merit in teaching kids to kill. Let’s hope the Boy Scouts of America agrees.

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  • night magic says:

    wheres the petition im sure everyone would sign !!!!

  • night magic says:

    this is disgusting !!! when is this ever alright and infront of kids !!!! no this should be stopped immediately !

  • gdtaber says:

    What kind of leaders are the Boy Scouts accepting who would do such a horrific thing to animals!!! Are the Scouts that desperate for leaders that they would accept such a monster as one of their leaders?? I only hope God can forgive this person for what he did to these poor bunnies. I know it’ll be a very, very long time, iff ever, before I’m able to forgive him. And what kind of lesson is this teaching this monster’s Scout troop?? That it’s okay to hurt and kill animals??? I’m appalled that this monster is allowed to be a leader. He sould be brought up on EXTREME animal cruelty charges!!!

  • Bev Harmon says:

    My my we the Boy Scouts wont allow gay leaders, but killer leaders are ok??????

  • Ivanes Berroa says:

    God intended we all rejoice from his creation, and use it wisely. Cruelty is not a godliness behavior. Please Boy Scouts, stop such a malicious practice.

  • Nancy says:

    Disgusting, that’s all I can say and feel right now. Teach children to be kind, not cruel if you want them to be kind adults!

  • Erica Munn says:

    Leaders are expected to set examples. What is he demonstrating??? Cruelty, callousness and cowardice. He should be charged with animal cruelty and jailed and fined.

  • Naila M Sanchez says:

    Fire this “leader”… this is pathetic to “teach” such cruelty and barbaric slaughter of two rabbits!! I am so disgusted with this person…. GET RID OF THIS MAN!!!

  • diane says:

    here we go again….I would NOT want this man teaching anything to my kid. he needs to be removed from his job!!!!!!

  • Lesley Blissett says:

    This so called “scout leader” seems to be totally unsuitable for his job, he appears to be more suited to teaching psycho paths how to kill! Diabolical!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • This is not the way to teach boys about survival. This was cruel, inhumane and unnecessary. I believe this so called “leader” needs to be banned from any and all contact with The Boy Scouts

  • Barbara Gruner says:

    Boy scouts used to be protectors of animals not their murderers. This person needs to take responsibility for this cruel act-not a good role model!

  • Patricia Stanley says:

    I agree James should be in jail. why would a person teach kids to kill precious animals. he is one warped person who should ever be allowed around animals or kids. this is sickening to me.

  • Angela Sklyar says:

    well i would imagine that child would come home and tell the story to the parents . And i would think no parent will approve that and definitely complain . So hopefully this person would be reported.I don’t think any parent want their children to learn anything from a violent act because it will only teach a child to be as cruel as he sees .

  • Meredith Hoag says:

    What kind of a sick message does this send to our youth?
    He should be fired from the Boy Scouts, arrested, booked, thrown in jail, and have his name permanently placed on an animal cruelty registry, not to mention being barred from working with children ever again. This kind of sadistic behavior towards animals should NOT be tolerated!

  • Mika Milani says:

    I am shocked and horrified to see in 21st century still vicious being exist to harm innocent, and defenseless animals. I think more sadly is that our government allows people and corporations do such a barbaric act. Stop cruelty and unacceptable behavior towards animals period.

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