VERSUS MR. DRUG ABUSE
An Anti-drug Advancement Ceremony
by Edward A. Haluska
- Akela, the leader of
the wolf pack (Cubmaster)
- Mr. Drug Abuse (non-Scout
- Police Officer (a real
- A candle log (with enough
holes for each boy)
- Candles for the candle
log (one per boy)
- Hand-rolled tobacco
cigarettes, with the ends twisted to resemble marijuana cigarettes.
Use fewer cigarettes than candles.
- A log drilled to hold
the fake marijuana cigarettes like candles
- A camp-stove lighter
(one that makes a flame, not just a spark)
- An ugly-monster costume
with a mask for Mr. Drug Abuse
- Handcuffs (just make
sure the police officer brings his set)
- Sheet to cover candle
and cigarette logs
- For the monster costume,
the uglier, the better. I used a monster mask that had stubby red horns
that contained flashing lights.
- Ugly monster costumes
are easy to obtain around Halloween. However, there are so many "monsters"
around during the Halloween season, it is better to conduct this ceremony
during some other time of the year. So plan ahead and pick up the costume
- Don't use a monster
that the Cubs would already know, such as Dracula or Frankenstein. Otherwise
you will have trouble establishing the monster as the personification
of drug abuse.
- Just a mask will do
for the ugly monster costume, but the costume must include a mask! The
mask is important so that the Cubs will not know the real identity of
Mr. Drug Abuse. We do not want the Cubs to confuse Mr. Drug Abuse with
the person playing that character. Make sure that the person playing
the monster is not wearing any part of the adult leader uniform. Mr.
Drug Abuse is such a heavy character that he should be played by someone
from outside the pack if at all possible. Although a parent from within
the pack is OK, Mr. Drug Abuse definitely should not be played by anyone
from the current adult leadership.
- If you are using this
ceremony for the first time, practice the wolf howl and wolf growl by
using them as a spirit cheer at the beginning of the pack meeting.
- Dim the lighting at
the beginning of the ceremony for better atmosphere and so that the
candles will show up better.
- The camp stove lighter
called for is basically just a butane cigarette lighter that has been
fitted with a trigger mechanism and a long extender tube so that the
flame is about 4 inches from the hand. These lighters may sometimes
be found with the Barbecue grills in some stores. Tigers and the younger
Cubs are usually more comfortable with this than matches or trying to
use a larger candle to light the small ones.
- You can use a candle
log that is made for standard size candles. However, if you are going
to have a large number of Cubs in the ceremony, you may want to consider
using birthday candles in the log.
- Instead of hand-rolled
cigarettes, the fake marijuana cigarettes can be made from commercial
cigarettes. Break of the filter, pull a little tobacco from each end,
then twist the paper shut.
- The first time I tried
this ceremony was during a Blue and Gold Banquet in a school lunch room
that did not have a stage. Within five minutes after the arrival of
Mr. Drug Abuse, all the Cubs who were not in the ceremony had left their
seats and were kneeling in a semi-circle around the front of the candle
logs. They were all actively involved in cheering for the Cubs in the
ceremony and heckling Mr. Drug Abuse. This was great! So try to use
a physical arrangement that will allow the Cubs in the audience to participate
in this manner. Avoid an elevated stage that would cut them off.
- Don't try to maintain
military discipline over the Cubs during this ceremony. Allow them to
shout and jeer at Mr. Drug Abuse. Even if it is just symbolic, you will
probably never again see them so actively and enthusiastically reject
drugs while among their peers.
- Because the Cubs will
be making a lot of noise during this ceremony, microphones for Akela
and Mr. Drug Abuse are extremely helpful. Wireless mikes are even better
as they allow Mr. Drug Abuse to interact better by being able to actually
approach the Cubs. If you only have one wireless mike, give it to Mr.
- Don't feel that you
have to stick closely to this script. Ad lib as needed and respond to
remarks made by the Cubs. However, to also make this ceremony an effective
tool for recruiting adult leaders, Mr. Drug Abuse should be sure to
deliver the "wait till next year" challenge at the end of the ceremony.
However, if he doesn't have a microphone, he may have trouble making
himself heard at this point in the ceremony.
- Having a real police
officer arrest Mr. Drug Abuse at the end of the ceremony works very
well. However, police officers may be called away without warning. If
the police officer is unavailable, just have the pack growl at Mr. Drug
Abuse to get him to leave.
Akela: The moon is full,
just as it was long ago on that night in the jungle when Mowgli first
joined the Seeonee wolf pack. It has been many years since Mowgli returned
from living with the wolves. After he returned, he taught us many of the
lessons he learned while in the jungle. The most important was that the
strength of the wolf is the pack, and the strength of the pack is the
wolf. That is why we are here tonight in this council ring. Tonight we
have many young boys who have earned new rank badges. As these boys have
grown, the strength of the pack has grown. So let us begin. Parents, bring
forward these man cubs.
(Akela calls out the names
of the Cubs who have earned the new rank badges. Parents and Cubs come
forward and face the rest of the pack.)
Akela: First, to earn
your rank badges, you boys have learned the Cub Scout promise. Are you
boys ready to make that promise again in front of your parents, these
other Cubs, and the rest of the pack?
(Akela shakes head in
yes motion. Boys should also shake their heads yes.)
Akela: Then please make
the Scout Sign and say the Cub Scout Promise along with me.
I promise to
do my best,
To do my duty to God and my Country,
To help other people,
And to obey the Law of the Pack.
(Mr. Drug Abuse now makes
Mr. Drug Abuse: Cub Scout
Promise! Do your best! What a bunch of sugar-sweet garbage! Akela, you
goody two-shoes, why don't you just give up? These boys are going to be
mine sooner or later.
Akela: Oh, no! It's Mr.
Drug Abuse! What's a scum bag like you doing here tonight? Go crawl back
under a rock.
Mr. Drug Abuse: I just
came by to let you know you're wasting your time. Do your duty! Obey the
law of the Pack! HA! These boys don't really care about all that. Why,
I'll bet that at least a couple of them are ready to come and follow me
Akela: Oh you think so,
do you? I guess I'll just have to prove to you that these boys have the
flame of the Cub Scout promise burning within their hearts and would never
be stupid enough to follow you. Let me show you.
(Remove the sheet that
covers the candle and cigarette logs.)
Akela: I have here two
logs. On this log are candles. The flame of these candles stands for the
fire of the Cub Scout Promise. But on this log are some of your nasty
marijuana cigarettes. Now I am going to give each one of these boys a
choice. I'm going to call them forward one at a time. If they believe
in the Cub Scout Promise and want to remain in this pack, then they can
light one of these candles. But if they want to leave the pack and stand
in your evil shadow, then they can light one of the marijuana cigarettes.
What do you say to that?
(Mr. Drug Abuse counts
the marijuana cigarettes and then counts the Cubs.)
Mr. Drug Abuse: I think
you don't have enough of my marijuana cigarettes on my log. That's what
Akela: Well, we'll just
see about that. Let us begin.
(Call each boy forward
one at a time and ask the following...)
Akela: boy's name , I
have here the (rank) badge that you have earned! If you want to accept
this badge, and remain with the pack, then light one of these candles.
But, if you want to leave us and follow the wicked ways of that (insulting
name) , then light one of these marijuana cigarettes. Choose!
(Akela should try to use
a different insulting name for Mr. Drug Abuse each time he uses the above
lines. Some good ones are maggot face, fungus face, toad face, worm face,
sleaze bag, slime ball, sewer rat, garbage head, scum snake, and rotten
(Hand the Cub the camp
stove lighter. While the boy has the lighter, Mr. Drug Abuse may ad lib
and try to get him to light one of the cigarettes. For example, Mr. Drug
Abuse could say...)
Mr. Drug Abuse: Come on
kid. Light one of my cigarettes. It will make you feel ten feet tall.
OR Hey kid, don't be a
nerd! All your friends are doing it. Be cool like them.
(OR Mr. Drug Abuse can
ad lib other similar lines.)
(After the cub has lit
a candle, Mr. Drug Abuse may ham it up and make a big show of his disappointment
and anger. Or he can act as if the lighting of the candle actually inflicted
pain on him.(Take back the camp stove lighter.)
Akela: You have chosen
well young man-cub, and the Pack is proud! (Hand the badge to the boy's
left hand and give him a Cub Scout handshake with your right hand.)
Well done young Cub! You
have chosen wisely! Here is your (rank) badge that you have earned!
(If you have a lot of
boys, make up minor variations on the above lines to keep the exchange
(During this part of the
ceremony, there will always be at least one smart aleck in the audience
who starts cheering for Mr. Drug Abuse. This can be squelched by having
Mr. Drug Abuse suggest that his "friend" should become a drug pusher for
him. Akela can then ask the other Cubs how they feel about drug pushers.
Akela can also lead the pack in growling at this boy. You just may have
a boy who decides to light one of the marijuana cigarettes. If he does,
tell him he is a disgrace to the pack. If he is wearing a scarf, remove
it, then hand him over to Mr. Drug Abuse. If he later seems penitent,
you may give him a second chance with the lighter. If he does not, you
may consider asking him and his parents to leave with Mr. Drug Abuse.)
(After all the Cubs have
received their badges..)
Akela: So Mr. Drug Abuse,
each boy has chosen, and their choice has been guided by the fire and
wisdom of the Cub Scout Promise. None will follow you tonight. Officer
(officer's last name) , will you please take care of this maggot for us?
(Police officer makes
Police Officer: Mr. Drug
Abuse, in the name of the Cub Scouts of America and the State of (your
state) , I hereby place you under arrest.
(Police officer handcuffs
Mr. Drug Abuse and begins to lead him out of the room. But before they
exit, Mr. Drug Abuse turns and shouts...)
Mr. Drug Abuse: You may
have won tonight Akela! But I'll be back! And I know your weakness. The
year is almost over, and you will need new adult leaders for next year.
Without any adult leaders there won't be any pack, or any Cub Scout Promise.
And all of these parents have good excuses not to volunteer: "Too busy!
Shift work! Working mothers! Just don't want to! Can't be bothered!" But
I have plenty of time. I'll be back for these boys next year!
Akela: Silence and be
gone evil one! These boys know better than to follow you. Cub Scouts and
parents of Pack ___! Let's show Mr. Drug Abuse what happens when he makes
a pack of wolves really mad.
(Akela leads pack in growling
at Mr. Drug Abuse. Policeman leads Mr. Drug Abuse away).
Akela: Look well, oh parents
of Pack ___! Look well, and know what a strong pack can do. Your young
cubs have chosen wisely tonight. Look well and be proud. But soon you
too will have to make a choice. You parents will have to choose whether
or not the pack continues. Heed Mr. Drug Abuse's warning, parents of Pack
___! May you choose as wisely as your own children. But for now, let us
celebrate the wisdom and the accomplishments of these Cubs with a good
(Akela leads pack in a