Merit Badges in the Boy Scouts of America
is one of the most recognized aspects of the Scouting program. Often emulated, never duplicated. If you ever ask anyone who quit scouts, and you ask them why, chances are that its because they did not ever want to get any or that they were too hard or were too "dumb", or what not.
And thats true to some degree, after a certain part in Boy Scouting, you need more merit badges to continue advancing in rank
, in order to try to eventually become an Eagle Scout
also required). Only 2% of all scouts actually become an eagle scout. Its really kind of sad, but thats another discussion.
So at last time i checked there are over 120 merit badges that can be obtained, many such as Computer Merit Badge
(a must among geeks), First Aid
, HAM Radio, Cooking
, etc. So there are a million to meet anyones needs, talents, or lack thereof.
Some badges are much easier than others. I think the radio merit badge had like 15 requirements, and basketry had like two (no exaggeration). And if they were not one of the designated few badges that you had to get, then they were weighted the same. I knew that when i was very active in the program, there were many scouts (including my brother) who saw this as an injustice to the real scouts. They thought that "real" merit badges like archery and rifle should not somehow be weighted more, or real scouts would shoot for woodworking or whatever.
The moral of it is, you needed 22 badges (probably 23 now), and they all basically count the same. The point is to vary your interests and to try new things that you wouldnt noramlly, like Physical Fitness, or Whitewater rafting or any of the remaining hundred or so badges. Good luck.