One young Cub Scout got an up close and personal lesson on just what a sensitive issue gun control is in the country when a hard-hitting question to a state senator appears to have gotten him kicked out of his group. Ames Mayfield, 11, was told not to return to his den in Broomfield, Colo. after the group met with State Senator Vicki Marble, according to his mother, Lori Mayfield. The Cub Scout also asked Marble about previous comments she had made about African Americans that sparked controversy.
“I was shocked that you co-sponsored a bill to allow domestic violence offenders to continue to own a gun,” Ames said as part of the long question he posed on Oct. 9 that his mother filmed and posted on YouTube. “Why on earth would you want somebody who beats their wife to have access to a gun?” The 11-year-old also brought up the recent Las Vegas shooting and questioned why some seemed to place so much importance on gun rights. “There is something wrong in our country where Republicans believe it’s a right to own a gun but a privilege to have health care. None of that makes sense to me,” he said. Marble responds to the long question by emphasizing the need for “crime control” and pointed out that several shootings took place in “gun free zones.”
At another point, the 11-year-old said he “was astonished that you blamed black people for poor health and poverty because of all the chicken and barbecue they eat.” The state senator said that “was made up by the media,” adding, “You want to believe it? You believe it. But that’s not how it went down.” That caused local news outlet to once again relive the 2013 controversy. The Denver Post recalled what Marble had said then:
“When you look at life expectancy, there are problems in the black race. Sickle-cell anemia is something that comes up. Diabetes is something that’s prevalent in the genetic makeup, and you just can’t help it.
“Although I’ve got to say,” she continued at the time. “I’ve never had better barbecue and better chicken and ate better in my life than when you go down South and you, I mean, I love it. Everybody loves it.”
Five days after the event, Mayfield was asked to meet with the leader of the Cub Scout pack in the area who told her Ames couldn’t return to his den. “He let me know in so many words that the den leader was upset about the topic of gun control,” Mayfield told the New York Times. “It was too politically charged.”
Marble said she didn’t “blame the boy for asking the questions” because she believes “there was an element of manipulation involved.” Mayfield denies she coached her son to ask the question, insisting she only told him to be respectful. A television reporter who talked to the 11-year-old said it was clear he was very passionate about the issue.
The Boy Scouts of America declined to comment on specifics, only saying Ames was now in another unit. “The Boy Scouts of America and the Denver Area Council are pleased that the family will continue their participation in Scouting,” the statement said.