Girl Scouts availability to more is a good thing

The Gazette Opinion Staff
Published: January 13 2014 | 1:31 pm - Updated: 29 March 2014 | 2:02 am in

I’m glad the Girl Scouts finally are more available to disadvantaged girls (“Outreach efforts enact scout pledge,” Jan. 6).

I was a girl scout once — briefly. In 1936, I was so thrilled when Belle Plaine started a Girl Scout troop that I talked every girl in my 6th-grade class into joining.

All of us went to Longfellow school “below the tracks.” The scout troop was led by Ernestine Gaskell, a teacher at the elite Whittier school, “above the tracks.”

The dues, I soon discovered, were 25 cents. I didn’t have 25 cents. I didn’t even have a winter coat and nearly died that November with pneumonia.

Every meeting began the same: “Hope Sankot, do you have your dues? No.” So they kicked me out. It was humiliating, I can tell you that.

Still, the Scouts taught me one valuable art: how to tie a square knot. That knowledge I’ve used all my life. Even lumbermen trying to tie my car’s trunk lid securely with twine sometimes didn’t know how to tie a square knot. But I did. I still do.

Hope Sankot-Rogers



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