Scout Oath
On my honor I will do my best
To do my duty to God and my country
and to obey the Scout Law;
To help other people at all times;
To keep myself physically strong, mentally awake, and morally straight.

Special Features

 Espaņol

 Interact

 Toolbox

Ethical Controversies

Tainted Money

TAINTED MONEY

Position One: Keep the Money

You are the fund-raiser for a nonprofit organization that remodels abandoned houses and sells them at low cost to low-income families. For the past year you have been conducting a six-million-dollar capital campaign to raise money to purchase more houses. With the campaign one million dollars short with only two months to go, you have been working hard to reach the goal.

For six months you have been trying to persuade Marlon Moneybags to contribute. Marlon is the retired owner of a manufacturing plant, and is one of the wealthiest persons in your town. You are finally rewarded with a donation of $750,000 and are confident you can raise the other $250,000 in the remaining two months. Mr. Moneybags gives you the check during a press conference to announce the donation.

Two weeks later the local newspaper reports that the police are charging Mr. Moneybags with harassment. Apparently during the last ten years he has been sending threatening and anonymous letters to Jewish and black residents of the town. Immediately you are contacted by the media and asked if you are going to keep the money. Several of your key volunteers say that they want you to return the money. At the next board meeting the members argue about what should be done. Finally, they decide to let you make the decision.

You decide to keep the money.

Defend your position.

Position Two: Return the Money

You are the fund-raiser for a nonprofit organization that remodels abandoned houses and sells them at low cost to low-income families. For the past year you have been conducting a six-million-dollar capital campaign to raise money to purchase more houses. With the campaign one million dollars short with only two months to go, you have been working hard to reach the goal.

For six months you have been trying to persuade Marlon Moneybags to contribute. Marlon is the retired owner of a manufacturing plant, and is one of the wealthiest persons in your town. You are finally rewarded with a donation of $750,000 and are confident you can raise the other $250,000 in the remaining two months. Mr. Moneybags gives you the check during a press conference to announce the donation.

Two weeks later the local newspaper reports that the police are charging Mr. Moneybags with harassment. Apparently during the last ten years he has been sending threatening and anonymous letters to Jewish and black residents of the town. Immediately you are contacted by the media and asked if you are going to keep the money. Several of your key volunteers say that they want you to return the money. At the next board meeting the members argue about what should be done. Finally, they decide to let you make the decision.

You decide to return the money.

Defend your decision.