Hongkong Daily Press.
Hongkong, Thursday, February 10th, 1927.
INSPECTED BY H.E. THE GOVERNOR.
AN UNTRUTHFUL INSINUATION CONTROVERTED.
NOT MILITARISTS, BUT BROTHERS.
Officiating in the capacity of Chief Scout of Hong Kong, H.E. the Governor (Sir Cecil Clementi, K.C.M.G.) inspected the Scout Troops of the Hong Kong Association in the grounds in front of Government House yesterday afternoon. His Excellency also presented the Prince of Wales' banner to the 20th Troop, who won it in 1926 for general efficiency in Scoutcraft and the year's work. During their year of tenure, the holders of the banner are entitled to be called "The 'Governor's Troop."
A feature of the proceedings was the taking of the Scout oath by the Hon. Dr. R.H.Kotewall, C.M.G., the new President of the Hong Hong Boy Scout Association, who was invested by His Excellency with the Tenderfoot badge. Letters of commendation were also awarded to two troops for special services, and warrants of office handed to two scoutmasters.
H.E. the Chief Scout of Hong Kong gave an eloquent address to the scouts on parade, and refuted the insinuation made by ill disposed people that the Boy Scout movement is only disguised militarism. His Excellency declared that the Scout movement aimed to establish world brotherhood between boys of all races to train them for citizenship and to be world brothers when they attained manhood.
A Smart Turn Out.
The turn out of thirteen troops of Scouts was exceedingly smart and the lads looked spruce as a regiment of Regulars in their neat khaki shirts and shorts, against a background of greenery.
The parade was under the Command of the Rev. G.T.Waldegrave (Scout Commissioner of Hong Kong), and there were also present, in addition to H.E. the Governor and Chief Scout of the Colony, Lady Clementi (President of the Hong Kong Girl Guide Association) in her uniform of the Guides, the Hon. Dr. R.H.Kotewall, C.M.G. (President of the local Scout Association), Capt. C.H.Steele (A.D.C. to H.E. the Governor), and District Scoutmaster White.
Coming smartly to attention as His Excellency came on to the ground, the troops accorded him the salute. Sir Cecil then proceeded to inspect them, and afterwards presented the Prince of Wales' Banner for general efficiency in Scoutcraft to the 20th Troop.
Letters of Commendation.
Commissioner WALDEGEAVE detailed how on the 19th of June last year the 19th Troop were returning to headquarters in charge of Scoutmaster Hon Yukfoi, when they were informed that a European lady had been victimised by a bag snatcher. They gave chase and were successful in intercepting this man. A monetary reward had been suggested, but as this was against the Scout traditions, it had been decided to award a letter of commendation to the Troop.
His Excellency then presented this letter to the Scoutmaster of this troop.
Proceeding, Commissioner Waldegrave related how the 20th Troop had had their services much requisitioned in cases of fires, by reason of the fact that their headquarters were in the Central District. This troop did particularly good service on the occasion of the Hong Kong Hotel fire. They had turned out frequently and rendered very real assistance. A letter of commendation was also to be awarded to this troop. The Commissioner added that only the previous night this troop had put out a fire in the grounds of Government House. The fire was caused apparently by a cigarette having set fire to some bushes.
His Excellency handed a letter of commendation to the Scoutmaster of the Troop in question.
The Scouts Oath.
Dr. Kotewall was then invited to join the ranks of the local Scout Association as their President by taking the Scout Oath. This Dr. Kotewall did by standing in front of H.E. the Chief Scout with his fingers raised in the scout salute, and repeating the oath which was administered by the Commissioner.
His Excellency then invested Dr. Kotewall with the Scouts' tenderfoot badge, as a sign that he had been admitted to their ranks.
Scoutmasters Roberts and Leveson Gower were headed their warrants of office by His Excellency.
CHIEF SCOUT'S ADDRESS.
Addressing the Scouts, H.E. THE CHIEF SCOUT said:- I am glad to see so good a muster of you here this afternoon and I have noted with much pleasure your smart and workmanlike appearance and your good discipline. I especially congratulate the 20th Troop on winning the Prince of Wales' banner. Unhappily there are ill disposed people who, observing your smartness on parade and your good discipline, exclaim that the Boy Scout movement is only disguised militarism and who pretend to believe that our real aim is to make soldiers of you. There is no share of truth is such an insinuation. The aim of the Boy Scout movement, looked at from the widest point of view, is to form a brotherhood of boys of all races, nations and creeds in the hope that, when these boys grow to manhood, the brotherhood of boys will pass naturally into a worldwide brotherhood of men.
Value Of Discipline.
Looked at from the point of view of the individual boy, the aim of the boy scout movement is to make men of you chivalrous, upright, resourceful, law abiding men. Discipline is one of the means by which these things are taught. Discipline is the outward and visible sign of the inward and spiritual grace. It should mean that in all your acts you are fully conscious that you form part of a troop, an association, a worldwide brotherhood, and that each of you will subordinate at all times his individual aims and ambition to the welfare of the whole fellowship to which he belongs. This is the way in which useful citizens of a country and of the commonwealth of all countries can be made; and this is the ideal which the Boy Scout movement strives to realise. Never forget this and let this ideal inspire your work both as boys and when you become men.
During his address, His Excellency also thanked the Troop who put out the fire in the grounds of Government house.
Dr. KOTEWALL in the course of a brief address, said he would like to express his thanks on their behalf to H.E. the Governor for having presented the Prince of Wales' banner and the two letters of commendation, and also for the deep interest His Excellency had always taken in the affairs of the local Scout Association. Dr. Kotewall joined in congratulating the troops on the smart manner in which they had turned out, and also the recipients of the banner and the letters of commendation.
Speaking with regard to the Boy Scout movement, Dr. Kotewall supported His Excellency in the stress laid by him on the value of discipline. He also agreed and wished to assure the Scouts themselves that there was not a shred of truth in the insinuation that their movement was a military one. It was a non political and non military movement, and he for one would never have taken a share in the movement had it been designed for military purposes.
Game of Life.
Dr. Kotewall again stressed the value of discipline, and reminded the boys that H.E. the Governor had on a previous occasion said that the scout movement was not merely to teach them how to play games, but was to help them to play the game of life.
It had given him (the speaker) much pleasure to be enrolled as one of them, and if at any time he could do anything for them as their President, then they need not be afraid to approach him.
The proceedings were concluded by the assembled scouts raising their hats on their poles and giving cheers, first for H.E. the Chief Scout, and secondly for Lady Clementi, as President of the Girl Guide Association in Hong Kong, and for the Girl Guide movement.