They held their first official troop meeting in mid-December, but it’s only now through increased media coverage that the Oakland, Calif., Radical Brownies are starting to generate interest nationwide. At least until the Girl Scouts of the USA catches on and sues for trademark infringement, the Radical Brownies is an organization that “empowers young girls of color to step into their collective power, brilliance and leadership to make the world a more radical place.”
A brief but fawning profile of the group posted by ABC7 News covers the Brownies’ first action, a march through a farmers market.
Parents wanted to find a way to include their kids in some real life issues regarding social injustice and police brutality. So they took to the streets and made it a teaching moment.
They marched in Oakland’s Lakeshore District. These demonstrators are barely old enough to read and write, but wise enough to know the difference between right and wrong. They marched through the Lake Merritt Farmers Market and got lots of attention.
The Colorful Mamas of the 99 Percent organized the march with their kids.
But what about badges? Fusion.net (Univision and Disney/ABC’s “irreverent” and “diverse” network) reports that the Brownies’ badge system includes awards for “LGBT ally” and “Radical Beauty.”
In the Radical Brownies, girls learn about social justice movements such the Black Panthers and the Chicano group Brown Berets. They wear their brown berets in homage to those two groups. But they also study how Disney princesses define girls’ image of beauty, and how that can affect self-image.
The Radical Brownies have their own badge system, including one for “Radical Beauty” and an “LGBT ally” badge. The girls also earned a “Black Lives Matter” badge after learning about police accountability and attending a civil rights march in Oakland.
There must be a protest sign-making badge as well.
The group doesn’t come without controversy: is it one of the best ideas ever, or the best idea ever?