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Cheating in 4-H?

Royalty-free Image: Nagashima at nightA case was back in the news this week that involves allegations of cheating in 4-H.

I’ll say it again, cheating in 4-H.

It’s hard to imagine such a clean-cut and worthwhile program like 4-H even being mentioned in the same sentence as cheating.

But the case involves a teenaged girl from White Lake who allegedly entered a hog in competition at the South Dakota State Fair that had previous state fair experience in Missouri.

I’m not going to argue one side’s case or the other, because it’s still moving through the courts and I’d frankly forgotten about it until it popped up again.

I could say that I’m a 4-H alum, but my two years in the program in McCook County go back more than fifty years. My brother and I were members of the Vermillion Valley Boys’ 4-H club, and if I had to I could still recite the 4-H pledge. 4-H, of course, stands for “Head, Heart, Hands and Health.”

My projects usually involved horticulture and handicraft, meaning vegetables from our family garden and some really cheesy handicraft leather kit items that I didn’t put together very well. Swine was out as a project since baby pigs were born in the spring and not the fall on our farm, so the ages didn’t work out for us.

I pretty much took home some well-deserved red and white ribbons, although I got one blue ribbon in something and the prized purple ribbons were out of reach for me.

So anyway, I hope this case is eventually resolved to everyone’s satisfaction.

Because cheating and 4-H just don’t sound right to me.

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