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  • #16
    Originally posted by King Ding Dong View Post
    FC required ? Why ? My wife works a man who stayed very active in scouts until he aged out. Never made it past Tenderfoot. Loved it, loved camping, loved hanging with all his friends. He just didn't care about the badges. Seems to me to be a very honorable and hardworking adult. Was probably an excellent Scout. Like BD said, there are good one and bad ones and some that are good and bad. Yesterday I was tagging along on mixed age ad hoc patrol on a district urban treasure hunt event. SM son 14, just Eagled not has COH yet was at his best all weekend except for one very bad moment. He was relaxed, very friendly, chatted up a 5 year old on the bus, cooked with enthusiasm, lead, was funny, blew away the current SPL, best I have EVER seen him (first time SM Dad was not there). Except for one moment. Crossing a interstate overpass he leaned over the railing and spit on the traffic below, which my son immediately imitated. How do I judge this Scout, or should I ?
    FC lets me know the boy has sufficient skill to handle himself in the woods. If he doesn't care enough to do that, it means he has to be babysat by his buddy.

    It's kind alike the kid that doesn't swim. He might be able to puddle around along the beach, but the row-boating, sailing, canoeing, kayaking, etc. are a lot more fun. Without passing he has chosen to limit himself. Same for FC.

    Stosh

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    • #17
      "Paper eagle" is an insulting term that I really hate hearing. It reflects more on an unworthy leader.

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      • #18
        Originally posted by fred johnson View Post
        "Paper eagle" is an insulting term that I really hate hearing. It reflects more on an unworthy leader.
        One and the same. Just because I have a SM patch on my shirt doesn't make me a real leader any more than a boy wearing an Eagle rank makes him a real leader.

        Stosh

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        • #19
          Sorry. Paper Scout - Paper Eagle - hits a raw nerve. Let's call it what it is - ADULT BULLYING.

          What is lacking from the discussion of Paper Scout / Paper Eagle is any consideration of what it takes any particular Scout to meet the Eagle requirements as written, before a heap of subjective, judgmental additional hoops are placed in his way.

          What does the patch actually represent on the individual boy wearing it? What about the Scout who has to work ten times as hard to make it, vs a Scout to whom it comes easy? Maybe the bookworm has struggled all his life with athletics and truly suffers out on the trail, while maybe the natural athlete is dyslexic and suffers through the required Merit Badges and needs extra mentoring to achieve them. Maybe the introvert finds leadership intimidating, despite having a razor sharp mind, and reverts into his shell at the slightest fear. Do you think calling him a name will increase his confidence and make him the leader you envision? What about the boy with very subtle developmental issues no one can quite put their finger on? Or the boy who is a dichotomy - far ahead in some areas and severely behind in others - incredibly frustrating to adults to work with and extremely easy to write off unfavorably because the adults can't make sense of it?

          Are these boys not equally deserving of the opportunity for personal growth and development? And why must it be developed in full by Eagle to be a "worthy" Eagle? Who gets to decide "worthy" anyway - I thought we had a very clear list of 7 Eagle requirements in black and white for that. It seems the Eagle workbook was changed precisely to reign in the subjective interferences of such adults. Do the boys suddenly stop growing and learning at Eagle? If they do, it is a reflection on your program, not them. If you must maintain your membership numbers by holding them hostage to being older Eagles, you've got problems.

          I am not talking about the simply lazy Scout, the dishonest Scout, the disrespectful wise-cracker, the true troublemaker, etc... But many of the comments are made as if every boy is out to game the system, and made with a sense of adult superiority instead of humility. You do not know it all about each and every Scout, no matter how many years you've been doing this or how many Scouts have come and gone in your program. Each Scout is unique. In general, the kids are different today, they are under pressures socially, academically, competitively and in the family that most adults never had to contend with, can't imagine and probably couldn't have managed as well at their ages.

          Most of the comments in this thread are truly disappointing to read knowing they come from adult Scouters who are supposed to build boys up, not mock them, talk about them behind their backs like it's a big joke, and tear them down. It is about the boys, not about you, the adults. If you do not agree with the National program the way it is laid out, if you'd like to see Eagle rank become a 17 year-old-only domain, or you'd like there to be 15 or 150 requirements for Eagle instead of the current 7, then petition to change the requirements, or quit BSA and start your own program.

          Thank you to the few in the thread who seem to get it. You restore my faith that decency still exists in the program. The Scouts who struggle to achieve do not deserve to be called names - they show much more Scout Spirit than the adults who call them those names. It is unseemly for any adult, particularly a Scoutmaster, to utter such a demeaning name, especially to a Scout's face. There's an old saying - go pick on someone your own size (position, maturity, stage of development, etc).

          It is certainly not Helpful, Friendly, Courteous, Kind, Cheerful, or Brave. I really hope those who may think it appropriate to call a Scout a paper-anything, or any other derogatory name, will reflect, and look with new eyes upon the boys in your charge. Let's let Scouting be a refuge, a safe haven for ALL boys, instead of just another pressure cooker situation or source of rejection for them. Let's build each other up, not tear each other down. Let's actually live the Scout Law. Let's be Scout-like.

          [Stepping down from soapbox now.]

          Comment


          • #20
            Go back to Scouting in the 1910's and read some of the literature promoted for boys by the BSA. This was the pre-radio, pre-tv, pre-computer, pre-cell phone era. They encouraged boys to actually read books, good books.

            Well the point is that the terminology for back then for the boys that weren't in the program for the right reasons was "Parlor Scouts". I guess the bullying has been going for nigh on 100 years now. Even then that was back when helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, cheerful and brave actually meant something, too. The term used for the opposite of a Parlor Scout was a Real Scout.

            I vividly remember Westy Martin meeting up with a young man who was noted for his skills as an Indian Scout for the US Army out west. He was excited about meeting him and when he finally did, concluded that he was no more a Real Scout than some of the Parlor Scouts back home. This was definitely written prior to the politically correct era as well.

            I am also led to believe a negative description bestowed on someone by someone else is bullying. Someone who lives and demonstrates a negative description bestowed by oneself is not.

            Stosh

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            • #21
              BLME: "Most of the comments in this thread are truly disappointing to read knowing they come from adult Scouters who are supposed to build boys up,"
              ​'Judgmental' must be the 14th scout law, since 'Hungry' is 13th.

              Notice that the 2 posters most offended by 'Paper Eagle' are also ardent defenders of the the 'requirements as written' mentality that produces paper eagles. I don't like looking in the mirror either; but I'm ugly.

              So let's quantify.

              Characteristics of a Paper Eagle :
              Lazy - Puts in the least effort, and only when an adult is looking.
              Manipulative - Works harder at knowing the minimums than meeting the requirements
              Self-centered
              Pompous
              Shallow - Likely to fold at the first strong wind.

              Good Eagle:
              Always helps
              Looks for challenges - Advancement is a byproduct of the journey, not the destination.
              Eager to teach others
              Good moral character - because it's the right thing to do.
              Experienced - Because of the challenges he's faced and overcome
              Confident in himself - because of his experience.

              Good Eagles are growing into men of good character.
              Paper Eagles are learning to game the system.

              If the politically correct part of your psyche insists on being offended by 'Paper Eagle', just remember:
              a Paper Eagle is only origami.

              Comment


              • #22
                Originally posted by JoeBob View Post
                ... a Paper Eagle is only origami.
                I dunno, a little oragami can make a comfy shelter from a tarp, or a perfect sling from a necker, or a sturdy pack from two boards and a drop-cloth, or a collapsible three-shelf oven from a #10 can and a wire coat hanger ...

                Comment


                • #23
                  Originally posted by JoeBob View Post
                  BLME: "Most of the comments in this thread are truly disappointing to read knowing they come from adult Scouters who are supposed to build boys up,"
                  ​'Judgmental' must be the 14th scout law, since 'Hungry' is 13th.

                  Notice that the 2 posters most offended by 'Paper Eagle' are also ardent defenders of the the 'requirements as written' mentality that produces paper eagles. I don't like looking in the mirror either; but I'm ugly.

                  So let's quantify.

                  Characteristics of a Paper Eagle :
                  Lazy - Puts in the least effort, and only when an adult is looking.
                  Manipulative - Works harder at knowing the minimums than meeting the requirements
                  Self-centered
                  Pompous
                  Shallow - Likely to fold at the first strong wind.

                  Good Eagle:
                  Always helps
                  Looks for challenges - Advancement is a byproduct of the journey, not the destination.
                  Eager to teach others
                  Good moral character - because it's the right thing to do.
                  Experienced - Because of the challenges he's faced and overcome
                  Confident in himself - because of his experience.

                  Good Eagles are growing into men of good character.
                  Paper Eagles are learning to game the system.

                  If the politically correct part of your psyche insists on being offended by 'Paper Eagle', just remember:
                  a Paper Eagle is only origami.
                  I pretty much agree with the above. I've met both, thankfully, more of the second group.

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