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This letter is in response to Jay Evan’s letter, “Boy Scouts should help Sandy victims,” in the Nov. 7 edition of The Lancaster News. Evan said in his letter that he found a food drive donation bag placed on his mailbox as well as the other mailboxes in his neighborhood placed there by the local Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts. Evan said residents should either give less food than they would normally donate or they should not donate any food at all because he feels that the food and personal hygiene items should all be donated to the citizens who were recently impacted by Hurricane Sandy in the Northeastern United States.
We, the leaders of BSA Troop 275 in Indian Land, would like to take an opportunity to inform Evans of the facts involving the Scouting for Food project. We want to enlighten him concerning his misguided opinion. I would never have believed that such a letter could have ever been crafted, but these are strange and challenging times.
We all realize that the people who were affected by Hurricane Sandy are suffering. I have also survived three hurricanes and several tropical storms while living on the North Carolina coast. I truly realize how devastating the situation is. I also realize that well-intentioned actions in a disaster of this proportion require a great amount of planning and logistical skills to insure all of the goods sent will arrive to the people who truly need them.
For you to draw a comparison between the individuals affected by Hurricane Sandy and the local individuals who also need some assistance is truly a misguided ideology. The Red Cross, FEMA, Salvation Army, National Guard and untold numbers of religious organizations are currently helping to relieve the suffering caused by Hurricane Sandy. The president himself promised to make things right and that he had all bases covered.
If you truly believed that Hurricane Sandy relief is a just cause and you believe that the Scouts could have helped, then you should have contacted the Boy Scouts. You should have had the common courtesy to voice your opinion and give the Scouts an opportunity to possibly work with you rather than putting a damaging letter in the paper asking citizens to forgo the food drive because of your personal opinion.
In your misguided action you have taken it upon yourself to determine that some of your fellow neighbors whom you probably have never met do not require any assistance, in your eyes.
The BSA food drive has been going on for many years and has provided food for struggling families in York and Lancaster counties. The food drive was planned a year in advance and involves hundreds of Scouts, leaders and parents. All of the food and other items collected in the Indian Land area will be taken to the Belair United Methodist Church food pantry for distribution over the upcoming months. The food will be distributed each month to more than 70 local families who are in need of assistance. That is nearly 500 people who are helped with this program.
The boys, as well as their leaders, eagerly give and participate because they believe what they are doing is good and just. When we read your letter, you truly cut us to the bone with your choice of words and misinformed actions.
Next time the spirit moves you to take action on a cause that you believe in, please take a moment and think through your options and do not pen a venomous letter when you have not exhausted your options before you carelessly and misguidedly cause hurt to caring people by not understanding the consequences of your actions.
Dave Zoglman, Jamie Laney, Karl Hilgemann, Todd Hennis, Kenny Farrell, Scott Huggins, Gary Smith, Mike Retter, Mike Cummins and James P. Burt Jr., with Boy Scout Troop 275.