Tag Archives: character

2005 Boy Scout Jamboree: President George W. Bush Knew How To Address Scouts

When President George W. Bush arrived at Virginia’s Fort A.P. Hill for the 2005 National Boy Scout Jamboree, a couple of incidents had already happened that he mentioned in his remarks.

First, vicious storms had swept through the area earlier in the week after intense triple-digit July heat, forcing a postponement in his visit, and he thanked the gathering for their “rain check.”

<a href=”http://www.nytimes.com/2005/07/27/us/questions-remain-as-scouts-try-to-deal-with-four-deaths.html”>Second, and most tragic, </a>was that four Scout leaders from Alaska had been electrocuted just five days earlier at the beginning of the event. As the men worked to erect a canvas tent, a tall metal pole touched a live electrical wire, killing them instantly in front of Scouts helping set up the tent, an incident the president addressed while expressing condolences at the loss.

But looking back now one day after Donald Trump’s narcissistic, politically-laced, rambling, and discourteous speech at the 2017 Jamboree, something that stands out is that the subject of President Bush’s remarks was scouting. Not politics. Not his campaign. Not bashing his predecessor. His remarks were respectful and appropriate for 30,000 boys ages 11-17, delivered with the dignity of a United States President.

At one point in typical Dubya style he quipped, “When I was a Cub Scout, my mother was our den mother. It’s about the time her hair turned white,” to laughter from the crowd.

Often with chants of “USA! USA! USA!” in the background, the president thanked Scouts for 1.5 million hours of volunteering in their communities, sprinkled in some light-hearted jokes, hailed volunteer Scout leaders, noted former Scouts who were currently serving in his administration, was grateful to Scouts who go on to serve in the military, and expressed his optimism for the years ahead as he stood in front of America’s future leaders.

Three video clips capture President Bush’s entire remarks. This is what a leader sounds like addressing the Boy Scouts of America. I hope we never lose sight of that.


Remarks by President George W. Bush
National Boy Scout Jamboree — July 31, 2005
Fort A.P. Hill, Virginia

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How will you be remembered at your funeral?

Smiley noteBy Lynn R. Mitchell

David Brooks poses an interesting thought in today’s New York Times (see The Moral Bucket List):

 It occurred to me that there were two sets of virtues, the résumé virtues and the eulogy virtues. The résumé virtues are the skills you bring to the marketplace. The eulogy virtues are the ones that are talked about at your funeral — whether you were kind, brave, honest or faithful. Were you capable of deep love?

Brooks’ thoughts began after realizing some people he encountered along the way were different in the way they interacted with others:

About once a month I run across a person who radiates an inner light. These people can be in any walk of life. They seem deeply good. They listen well. They make you feel funny and valued. You often catch them looking after other people and as they do so their laugh is musical and their manner is infused with gratitude. They are not thinking about what wonderful work they are doing. They are not thinking about themselves at all.

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