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I Hate the Girl Scouts!

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Here's why.

woman in work table

Radical Mommy: Can someone please tell me when it became OK to panhandle at work? By panhandling, I mean selling Thin Mints, Samoas, Tagalongs, and Do-si-Dos to unsuspecting and defenseless co-workers. Isn't there some law about soliciting in a workplace? And doesn't hawking cookies for cash count as soliciting? I mean, I don't come into work and sell bananas so that my son can go on a soccer trip -- so why do YOU come in selling cookies?

According to the Girl Scout Cookie website: "The activity of selling cookies is directly related to our purpose of helping all girls realize their full potential and become strong, confident, and resourceful citizens."

The website goes on to say:

  • Girl Scouts practice life skills like goal-setting, money management, and teamwork -- and they have fun! (What I think they REALLY mean to say is that the actual Girl Scouts sit on the asses while their parents learn all those lessons.)
  • Customers get a great product and get to support girls in their own community. (What the hell is so great about people who are probably already overweight shoveling sleeves of Thin Mints in their mouths? Can someone please tell me?)
  • All of the proceeds support Girl Scouting in the local community. (Why aren't these kids' parents paying to help their kids' Girl Scouting in the local community? Why do I have to foot the bill for your kids' desire to help the community? You do it!)

I know that people are going to be pissed when they read this -- especially all the cookie-slinging parents out there -- but if you take the time to really think about it, you start to see things my way.

If the kids themselves were doing the selling, then I'd only have a slight problem with it -- after all, I don't think that little girls should be put in the position of begging for money to fund activities that their parents should be paying for in the first place. But when it's their parents doing the selling FOR them, I consider it straight-up armed robbery with baked goods.

I know a lot of you are thinking, "Hey, don't buy them if you don't want them, bitter lady!" Well, it's not that easy -- these cookie-selling predators work in such a way that you actually feel guilty if you don't submit to their baked-goods bribery. I completely resent it -- if I want cookies, I will buy them at the supermarket, not from a co-worker at my place of employment.

The reason I resent the cookie-selling so much is because it's often the boss doing the pushing. Now you tell me, who wants to say "no" to their boss's kids? I mean, you're the boss, surely you don't have to force me, your employee, to give you money so your kids can roast marshmallows around a campfire. Pathetic! Pay for it your goddamned selves.

So, as you can well imagine, I won't be buying any Girl Scout Cookies this year, or any other year for that matter. And in case you're considering asking me to sponsor you in some godforsaken marathon, you can forget that, too!


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69 comments so far | Post a comment now
Lindee January 8, 2009, 4:33 PM

Most offices (at least the ones I worked at) had rules against it, but people did it anyway. They just did it behind management’s back.

my say January 8, 2009, 5:13 PM

I agree with you. So many parents do the selling for the kids when the kids should do it them damn selves. Not just cookies, but candy bars and gift wrap to.

Anonymous January 8, 2009, 5:18 PM

I agree cookies should not be sold at work;however, the girl scouts are for girls of any background. I buy the cookies because I believe it will help girls whose parents can’t afford to pay for the experiences they get through scouting. Not everyone is rich.

Cori January 8, 2009, 5:58 PM

This is ridiculous. No one is asking you to pay for a camp out. The money from Girl Scout cookies pays for programs, usually for underpriviliged kids whose parents can’t pay and also, with each box, money goes to troop where girls learn about budgeting and handling money to reach goals. Now, you’re right about one thing, you don’t have to buy the cookies. But you’re wrong about another…aiming at Girl Scouts for something parents do for EVERY thing their kids are in. At my work there have been GS cookies, BS popcorn, soccer raffle tickets, marathons sheets for various diseases, school wrapping paper…just to name a few. No need to attack GS as if they’re the only source of evil. My troop works hard to sell cookies to support itself, rather than ask their parents to hand them every dime likme spoiled brats. And as their leader, I teach them about setting a goal for cookie money, budgeting it with supplies needed for meetings and badges, and still reaching their goal. And yes, many of them could not afford to do these things without GS. You have every right to express your opinion, but I’ll express mine now, too…this stuff is why I hate blogs. People signing on to whine online about things they’re too cowardly to say to anyone in person. You don’t wanna buy cookies? Say no. Someone selling against your policy? Blow the whistle. Your boss asks and you odn’t want them? Grow a pair and say no, for whatever reason you want to give from dieting to diabetes for all I care, but don’t come online to malign a program that’s wonderful for young girls because you’re not able to stand up for yourself. Though, if you’d been in Girl Scouts like my troop, you’d’ve learned how to do that a long time ago.

Mona January 8, 2009, 6:11 PM

HOnestly, I’m a GS leader…and I get the work thing. But a lot of my girls…their parents CANNOT afford to pay for a camping trip. Let’s talk about the one who’s widowed mom just lost the older daughter in a car crash (only 16) and has just been laid off. This little girl standing outside the local supermarket can pay for her trip as well as all her activities. One of the reasons people sell at work nowadays is to stay away from those creeps that you run into door to door anymore. I don’t let my daughter go to certain houses/neighborhoods when I’m with her. But Cori’s post is right on. Maybe you didn’t get to be a GS when you were a kid and you’re upset. Maybe a Girl Scout stole your thunder. But being mean to one specific group points to issues far beyond cookies. Good luck with that bitterness, it eats you up faster than a person eating that sleeve of Thin Mints!

Meme January 8, 2009, 6:13 PM

I agree with Cori - learn to grow up and say no. Is your boss telling you you won’t get a raise or promotion if you don’t buy cookies?

I also like how because you object to your boss selling cookies for their daughter, you’re boycotting the little girl who comes to your door as well.

I worked in an office where there wasn’t a week that went by where someone didn’t have some sort of thing for sale - either for their kids or a charitable cause - you learned quickly to say yes to things you might want to buy/sponsor and no to others. No one ever took offense if you said “No thanks!”

Diane January 8, 2009, 6:15 PM

It must be nice to have money pouring out of your pockets … wish we were all in that position! How sad that you don’t feel your own son should learn about philanthropy! I truly feel sorry for him and you!

maeby January 8, 2009, 6:54 PM

I was a girl scout. They taught me to cook and sew and do other things that would benefit me as a woman later in life. Oh yeah and honor god and my country. haha! Just kidding. Its a pile of rubbish. They just want you to sell the cookies and they give prizes to the girls who sell the most. So you feel like an a$$**** if you dont sell enough. it means YOU FAIL. I’m sorry, but girl scouts is pointless. I’m sure people will just say my tribe or whatever was just lame. Maybe so. But its still a complete waste of time.

Mila January 8, 2009, 6:54 PM

Wow… I think u never got the chance to become a GS so ur holding on to bitterness. Never to late. Let me inform u that i’am a mother of a GS and she loves it. No i don’t have the money to pay for some of her enjoyments. Things like that tends to keep girls out of the streets or even thinking about what might be in the streets. My daughter has been on many field trips and other places that i would not even be able to afford because GS gets discounts. These girls work hard to earn their patches and pins and if it takes me selling damn cookies to avoid pregnancy and drug use as a child and keeping her at her age then im selling the cookies. Haters… cant live with them and cant live without them. Lady… find something else to do with ur-self. Maybe sitting in the tub and letting the water trickle might ease some of the tention.

Anonymous January 8, 2009, 7:20 PM

Are you kidding me? You know what? If you have a problem with buying cookies, fine. But, the cookie sales have been the main money making activity for years and years. You obviously have nothing better to do than to bash groups of adorable girls, selling delicious cookies that you don’t want to go to your hips. So, don’t buy them. But, don’t hate! And by the way, we don’t want you to buy our cookies. They are little girls, for God’s sake!

N January 8, 2009, 7:35 PM

Mona- see that is what i think she is talking about, people like you coming along a guilting them about a little girl whose sister died and mom got laid off, how are you suppose to say no to this person and then have them leave miffed and tell others your a horrible person even if your just doing it because your suffereing with the economy as well!

Les M January 8, 2009, 8:12 PM

I’m not going to give a sob story, but we DO pay to have our daughter in GS, and our sons in CS, out the wazoo. And all three are outside for hours on end doing their own selling (daughter in the cold, because they’re selling now), in addition to the people at work my husband talks to - who know our kids anyway. This is how our kids do more than just go to meetings.

mary January 8, 2009, 8:36 PM

Unbelieveable. I am a leader of 3 troops with no daughters. I sell cookies at work so that some of my girls not only can do a sleep over, but so they can have a pizza party and pay for their next year registration. I’m happy that you are so financially well off that you can pay for everything for your son, but why shoot down people who can’t and are finding ways to help kids to do more without asking for grants. Cookies are not a hand out — they are a product that you cannot purchase in a store like and some people look forward to them. Please think about what you said I’m praying this was brought on by other issues. Just don’t sign up for cookies with your attitude it will help no one.
Also to maeby — don’t know what Girl Scout troop you were in as you slam the scouts — but don’t know any called a tribe. GS build girls of confidence, character,

birdsfly January 8, 2009, 9:42 PM

Some people at work like some of the fundraisers and nowadays it’s safer then sending the kids door-to-door, even with a parent in tow. Remember the kid that got shot this past Halloween? and that was when people should expect children at their door! It only takes one crazy neighbor to cause a real tragedy.

Anonymous January 8, 2009, 9:48 PM

I think the point is that the PARENTS are selling the cookies - NOT the kids. What the heck are the kids doing while their parents are selling for them? Having parents selling the cookies is ridiculous and goes against the whole reason the Girl Scouts say they have the girls do it.

Anonymous January 8, 2009, 9:48 PM

I think the point is that the PARENTS are selling the cookies - NOT the kids. What the heck are the kids doing while their parents are selling for them? Having parents selling the cookies is ridiculous and goes against the whole reason the Girl Scouts say they have the girls do it.

Cub Mom January 8, 2009, 9:54 PM

I’m a mom to two Cub Scouts. The Cub Scouts are just as crazy about their popcorn as the Girls are about their cookies (frankly, the Thin Mints dominate!)
My boys do not sell popcorn. (Nor do they sell anything, for any organization in which they are involved.) I am teaching my sons nothing by selling it myself at my workplace; and I can’t send them out to sell it door to door. Neither of them has won an award for being the top popcorn seller, but both have had great experiences as Cub Scouts. We are fortunate that we can pay for our kids’ experience, and ask what the goal per child is; we pay it. We do not begrudge others who do participate; we just choose not to.
We do, however, participate in work-related fund raisers and service activities: car washes, clean-up projects, etc. They are part of the Pack, and this type of activity teaches them to be part of a team.
Scouting has been wonderful for my kids. I don’t agree with the cookie/popcorn mania, though I do buy the cookies (of my own accord, no strings attached.) I have the courage to stand up for my convictions, whether to co-workers who bring in their stuff, or to the Cub Scouts themselves. Saying no is easy, and you do not need to explain to anyone why you’re not spending your own money.
If you as a grown up can’t stand up to a Girl Scout, (or her well-intentioned parents) your problem has NOTHING to do with cookies.

Lisa J January 8, 2009, 9:56 PM

Just in case you can’t see my Twitter - I’ll hand deliver the message…

“Ok since when is it LOGICal for a MOM to blog “I hate the Girl Scouts”. Hate is a little harsh, don’t you think? Pfft.. from my GS to you.”

Jo January 8, 2009, 10:11 PM

My dd sold (ok, I sold) the most amount of cookies in her troop. Probably the most by girl in her district (whatever it’s called). Since I couldn’t bring her to work to sell cookies, I had her write a letter to them with what she wanted to ask (as if she were there). And when we went to pickup the cookies, she separated the orders, bagged them, and wrote thank you notes to them all. Her troop leaders decided what to do with the money the kids made (really - what my dd made) and took them to some indoor waterpark. I got a phone call only Two Days Before the trip date from the co-leader letting me know. What the? I work. How the $#%% was I supposed to get the day off work to take her?! My kid basically paid for that troop’s trip and I was pissed! A Severe lack of communication from the leaders (not the first time they didn’t communicate group plans), and that final straw of the trip, made both my dd & I quite upset. Bad thing, the leader had been a friend. Yeah- it took me a long time to get over (me) being treated like that- but to do that to my kid- it still angers me.

Sue January 9, 2009, 12:31 AM

I am very sympathetic to your POV. My daughter is a Brownie. I’m not thrilled about it; her dad, my ex, urged her to join, and of course the meetings fall on one of my nights with her (we have joint custody). I do feel the troop is good for her socially as she is an only child, and I am grateful for the troop leader’s dedication. However from the beginning I have made it clear to my child, her father, and the troop leader that I will not participate in selling cookies. My family is full of obese, diabetic, and heart diseased people. GS Cookies have transfat and palm oil, ingredients proven to cause health problems. Not healthy anyway you look at it. I really don’t like the Amway-like, gung-ho selling cheers and skits that dominate all meetings Jan-Mar during cookie season. Last year we left until selling madness ended.

I give the troop money for activities fund as I can. I have problems with making children sell products, be it trash bags, wrapping paper, etc., but especially when it is “food” with no redeeming value. Tradition is a poor excuse to continue selling crap.


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