Free-Range Kids

Do Teenage Girl Scouts Really Require Adult Supervision While Selling Cookies?

And we wonder why college students are so fearful and fragile.


Girl Scouts

At first I read these official Girl Scout Safety Tips as saying girls between the ages of 6 and 12 must be supervised by an adult while they sell cookies door to door. But that's not what it says: the site recommends adult supervision for girls in grades 6 through 12. 

According to Tip #4: 

Adults must accompany Girl Scout Daisies, Brownies, and Juniors when they are taking orders, selling, or delivering product. Girls grades 6–12 must be supervised by an adult when selling door-to-door and must never sell alone. Adults should be present at a cookie booth in any public place at all times. 

A high school senior in the company of another high school senior is not considered ready to knock on a neighbor's door, or even stand outside the local supermarket selling cookies? Really? 

I thought maybe this was a typo, as elsewhere the rules say that girls must never sell at night unless accompanied by an adult. This seemed to suggest that sometimes, in the protective light of day, they can sell without an adult. But then I found another official Scout site that reiterated even Girl Scout "Cadettes, Seniors, and Ambassadors" (middle-through-high school age girls) can't sell door to door without an adult. 

And we wonder why college kids seem so fragile as of late. Could it be because we officially treat them like babies right up until the day they arrived on campus? It's like expecting a person who has worn socks and shoes his entire life to walk barefoot through the woods. 

The idea that selling cookies this way builds the skills "essential to leadership, success, and life" seems woefully delusional. We are confusing young people into thinking they are always threatened unless there's a grown-up keeping the terrifying world at bay. 

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  1. I will not comment on this and defer to the expert. Old Man With Candy. Although,Crusty may chime in.

    1. Nonsense. Sixth grade and up is way too old for Old Man. He likes them a little fresher.

      1. But they have sweets he can take and use for bait It never hurts to have some trade bait too

        1. Hey, if his exes don’t throw him some cookies every now and then – once they’re old enough for Girl Scouts – then that sounds like his problem.

      2. Teen is definitely getting past the “Use By” date.

    2. Does anyone know when the Camel Toe DeeLites are set for sale?

  2. CYA by a group that doesn’t have sovereign immunity. Not exactly man bites dog.

    1. Yeah, the original catalyst for this type of infantilization is really fear of lawsuits and ass-covering by spineless bureaucrats and fearful chaperons. It’s become more than that as people “adjust” to treating kids this way, but much of the original reasoning for this is “just have an adult with them in case anything happens, then we’re covered”.

      1. Exactly. Teaching children the distinction is, I think, quite important.

        “We’re not protecting you from kidnappers and evil people who eat children. It’s all the ‘normal’ evil people who will ruin lives to make themselves feel good, sweetheart. You’ll likely never meet the former, but the latter are legion.”

        1. “The lawyers are out to get you! Kill them on sight!”

      2. That must be why selling something from the organiz’n is the trigger for the requirement. Merely being a Girl Scout doesn’t require an adult around, but being a Girl Scout selling Girl Scout product does.

  3. Seriously, in my first (only) year in Boy Scouts, whatever we were selling (magazines?) we went solo, not even another Scout (you didn’t want to have to share the prize for most sales, whatever that was). As I recall, Boy Scouts start at age 11.

    We are raising a nation of wimps!

    1. Worse than that, you’re raising a nation of non-hustlers.

    2. I never wanted to join the Scouts.At that age I was mowing lawns,shoveling snow and cleaning out the local car wash once a week. Cash is good.

      1. I just did both. +1 Personal Management merit badge.

  4. Yeah, I walked all over my neighborhood alone selling fertilizer (!) for the Boy Scouts at age 11, and not very successfully either. Apparently my neighbors were cheap, or maybe just didn’t like the scouts (or me?). But the idea that my mom would follow me around while I was doing this would have been ridiculous.

    1. I walked to school from kindergarten on. Usually, my father wasn’t even at home – he left for work and we knew how to read a clock. It’s okay, though, my older brother in first grade was with me.

      1. Why back in my day….’shakes fist.

        I remember in Grade 3 walking back from school with a friend to his house. Both his parents worked and he had his own key (which wowed me because my mother was a stay at homer so I didn’t need one). We’d go in, plump down and watch Tom & Jerry while eating marble cake. And then I walked home which was about 2 miles away.

        And I turned out just…fine.

        1. No, you didn’t. That experience turned you into a loonytarian with the insane delusion that people can and should run their own lives.

    2. I hauled so much goddamn mulch for our Troop’s spring fundraiser that I started to gag at the smell of it. And then when I was done I was instructed by my folks to spread the 20 bags they had bought and I had delivered to their driveway, all without their supervision.

      1. Jeeze, that reminds me of being left home alone in the house that we had just moved into doing something (spread topsoil? I dunno) while my parents went to my step-grandfather’s funeral. Whatever it was, it was heavy, and a hot humid July day right before Apollo 11 lifted off, and I still remember it all these years later.

        btw, I was 9!

    3. Christ, I was shining shoes in bars as a ten and eleven-year-old, walking from bar to bar with my kit on the south side of Chicago. Pedophiles were always trying to pick me up, (I was a cute kid), but I simply turned them down. When I got older, (twelve), I got a job cleaning a bar in the mornings. When I was fourteen, I was pumping gas and changing tires at service station, (back when they still fixed cars), and walking around with a big wad of money, a changer, and a cigarette hanging on my lip. Can you even imagine such a thing nowadays? Even then you were supposed to be sixteen to work.
      I brought this up with my mother recently. I wanted to get her take on all this but, like almost everyone else, she’s under the impression that the World is a much more dangerous place today than it was in the sixties and seventies. She would not be swayed by statistics.

  5. I heard those cookies aren’t even made out of real Girl Scouts. BAD.

  6. It’s probably to make sure the girls don’t put razor blades in the cookies.

    1. Et tu, Fisty?

      *shakes head sorrowfully*

    2. Some of my kid’s known associates are Girl Scouts, and i wouldn’t put it past ’em.

      1. Maybe they’re just cutters.

  7. Hey, you old geezers, stop going all Four Yorkshiremen on us. I suppose next you’ll tell us that participation trophies are a bad thing.

    1. Hey, my family’s from Yorkshire.

      Up in the Dales.

  8. I recall being dropped in front of a Walmart all by my lonesome fifth grade self with a box full of candy bars to raise money for a trip to Washington D.C. I managed to pay off the entire trip and don’t recall being harassed in any way, although an old lady showed me how to organize my cash that I still use to this day.


    1. an old lady showed me how to organize my cash that I still use to this day.

      These masturbation euphemisms are getting pretty abstract.

      1. That one is pretty easy to figure out actually.

      2. If there was an OMWC, you know – you just know – there had to be one going the other way.

        1. Old Lady With Cash? It makes sense.

  9. And who will protect us from the Girl Scouts pushing their poisonous wares on hapless addicts? I see gangs of them loitering in front of Walmart where every other customer is morbidly obese and nobody even has the decency to call 911.

  10. As a father of a girl in Girl Guides, all I know is my daughter wants to go at things solo or with her friends. They WANT to be independent and that should be encouraged not discouraged.

    1. Were you able to find a segregated troop? Congrats, your kid is safe! Well, not from me, of course.

    2. Girl Guides? What is that, yet another pale Canadian imitation of yet another great American tradition?
      Has anybody ever noticed the creepy resemblance of the B/GSA uniforms with those of the Hitler Youth?
      Also, you know who else wore khaki?

      1. Gap models?

      2. Has anybody ever noticed the creepy resemblance of the B/GSA uniforms with those of the Hitler Youth?

        You’ve got that backwards; Ever notice the creepy resemblance of the Hitler Youth uniforms to the B/SA uniforms?

        First they came to sell me cookies…

      3. Jake, from State Farm?

    3. Going solo can cause hair to grow on your palms

  11. Oh wow. I sold girl scout cookies door to door by myself from age six onwards. I had a planned route so my mom knew where I was, but it wasn’t like we knew all our neighbors and most of the houses on my street had long driveways and were extremely private. But I learned my libertarianism from my mom, since she’s always been cussedly self-reliant. She was also our troop leader and I went on to work for the girl scouts at the summer camps, where we also stressed being able to assess risk on your own (or when to ask for help) and I actually got some damned good sex ed through scouts.

    Sure, anecdotal and this was all pre-2000, but I am pretty surprised. Girl scouts should not be coddling women and girls.

    Now back to lurking so as not to dispel any notions about commenters being exclusively something something men something.

  12. Do Teenage Girl Scouts Really Require Adult Supervision While Selling Cookies?

    Yes, because Public Accommodation.

    Ha, ha! Got ya!

    The idea that selling cookies this way builds the skills “essential to leadership, success, and life” seems woefully delusional.

    Delusional, and ridiculous. What builds character is joining a biker gang. Or the Marines.

  13. Jesus fucking Christ! It’s like Skenazy has never seen a Max Hardcore film!

  14. Do Teenage Girl Scouts Really Require Adult Supervision While Selling Cookies?

    I would think that would depend on their proximity to OMWC. Or to STEVE SMITH.

    1. No no no, OMWC is the adult, supervision is the euphemism.

  15. Let’s see how quickly I can get banned from H&R, by not passing up an opportunity to tell one of my favorite one-liners:

    “Hey, did you know I used to be in the Girl Scouts? I got kicked out for eating a Brownie.”

  16. God damn I just want to kill myself so I don’t have to bear witness to the utter degradation and fall of my country.

    1. Errr… Bare

  17. “We are confusing young people into thinking they are always threatened unless there’s a grown-up keeping the terrifying world at bay. ‘

    …and that when they in-turn become adults, the government becomes their supervising parent. This is not an accident.

  18. Bossy. There, I said it.

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