Hey M. Ted,
I have to respectfully disagree. I think it depends on how you are going to play the guitar. If your goal is to be able to sing songs and strum or fingerpick along, you can go very far without ever playing a scale. You can even learn to play melodies, improvise, and compose tunes without playing scales.
On the other hand, for learning how to play lead guitar, scales can be very very helpful.
I just don't think they are necessary for every guitar player's needs.