Scout’s Honor: The Secret Files of the Boy Scouts of America

This doc wakes us up to the dark side of this scouting organization.

Child molestation is no laughing matter. Whether they take place in Catholic Churches or the Boy Scouts of America, this issue cannot be ignored. Some kids may not have realized they’ve been violated until they reach their 40s or 50s. Others can either move forward to take their own lives out of misery. And there are those who can’t stomach up the courage to speak the truth. And in minor cases, and this is never discussed in the film, but some parents blame the children for what happened, which is one of the worst things people can do.

I may not have been touched in my youth, but that doesn’t mean I can’t show my sympathy for those who were. The reason I would bring this up is because the made-for-Netflix documentary “Scout’s Honor: The Secret Files of the Boy Scouts of America” focuses on the Boy Scouts of America, which has faced a lawsuit for bankruptcy, regarding multiple counts of sexual abuse within the organization.

At the time, the institution believed these abuses were just small problems, and never gave out warnings to parents or future scouts. In fact, evidence was withheld by law enforcers. But as time moved forward, the message finally came out to people.

Here are some of the prominent characters in this true story.

Patrick Boyle is the journalist, who reported on child abuse, and wrote the book “Scout’s Honor: Abuse in America’s Most Trusted Institution.”

Michael Johnson joined as the Youth Protection Director with excitement. All he wanted to do was keep the kids safe, and is repulsed by the decisions made by the organization.

Thomas Hacker is a church leader, teacher, and scoutmaster, who admitted to molesting boys. He kept saying he would go away and get help, but he ended up getting convicted.

Christopher Schultz went to a Catholic school whose teacher Edmund was also a scoutmaster. This molestation has damaged the boy up to suicide, and the pervert was kicked out of the church and left the state. His older brother Richard regrets not protecting him.

And Michael Nussbaum was a scout victim-turned-soldier, who wants to make sure no kids will ever be damaged the way he was again. He and many others want voices to heard, whether it’s their own voices or their deceased loved ones’.

I’ve been on two camping trips in my lifetime, but never have I been in the Boy Scouts of America. But I am seeing the true colors within the organization. It also shows us that banning gays from becoming boy scouts would fix things. It hasn’t. It just proved this organization was homophobic.

“Scout’s Honor: The Secret Files of the Boy Scouts of America” gets complicated within the story, which threatens to take away my interests, but it does open our eyes and reminds us on how boys can still be violated, whether they’re in the woods or churches or anywhere for that matter. It’s horrifying when we acknowledge how scoutmasters would do something as damaging to innocent boys, and threaten to take away their youth and spirits. And it also acknowledges that this nightmare is unforgivable, while keeping a straight mind that the next generation of boys can be saved.

This made-for-Netflix doc speaks its mind with the right amount of emotions, and it gets really gritty and sad. I hope you have tissues right next to you.

Rating: 3 out of 4.

Streaming on Netflix

This article was written by me with full support of the SAG-AFTRA and Writers Guild of America strikes.

Categories: Documentary

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