Trumps Boy Scouts Speech
Trump has angered parents throughout the United States by delivering a speech to the Jamboree of the Boy Scouts of America. West Virginia was the location of this year’s event. Members from across the United States gather to celebrate their scouting tradition. The organisation holds the Jamboree every four years. Scouts ranging from the ages of 12 to 18 attend.
During his speech, Trump lambasted his political rivals, including former President Obama and Hillary Clinton. The president insulted the media, claiming that the success of his leadership has been hampered by the reporting of ‘fake news’. He claimed that the press would not accurately report the size of the crowd at the jamboree, telling the audience he expected them to report “about 200 people”.
Trump attacked his fellow politicians in Washington, calling the US capital a “cesspool”. He said: “You know, I go to Washington and I see all these politicians, and I see the swamp and it’s not a good place. In fact today I said, ‘We ought to change it from the word swamp to the word cesspool or perhaps to the word sewer,’ but it’s not good. Not good.”
Highlighting the current controversy in Washington surrounding his health bill, Trump slammed the Affordable Care Act. Claiming that Obamacare is hurting American society, he said his Secretary of Health and Human Services, Tom Price, was working to overturn the major reform of US healthcare which took place under the last presidency. Poking fun at Price he said if the Secretary didn’t get the votes needed to change the health act, he would fire him.
Before a crowd of children, he bragged about his election victory. Trump told the assembled about his joy watching the electoral map turn from blue to red. He called those who doubted his victory as “dishonest people”, and they didn’t know what to say following his win.
Trump also thanked the crowd in attendance for voting for him. Which is strange, considering children attend the Jamboree, under the legal voting age.
Change of Tone
The president’s speech took a much different turn to that of his predecessors. For 80 years, US presidents have spoken at the jamboree, but none have ever taken a political slant. Roosevelt spoke to boy scouts about good citizenship. Truman promoted fellowship. George H.W Bush told the scouts about the virtues of serving others.
Many former scouts have condemned the speech for its overtly political tone. The official policy of the Boy Scouts of America is nonpartisan, non-political. Former scouts took to Twitter to complain about the tone which the Trump took, and for the Boy Scouts of America for facilitating him.
The speech angered parents of boy scouts. Some claimed that Trump disrespecting his rivals was a bad message to children. Others said that they will no longer be involved with the scouts.
Scouts had been advised by the Jamboree to avoid using divisive slogans during the speech. Trump’s election campaign was littered with shouts of “Build a Wall” and “Lock Her Up”. The scouting organisation believed that such slogans could be hurtful to some of its members.
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