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The Future of the BSA?

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  • #31
    As to the "rules" about duty to God and their enforcement, I think we need to look no further than the letter of the council Scout Executive in South Carolina who resigned over the gay issue. His letter reveals that his Christian beliefs probably drove many of his decisions over the years he was a professional. He would be the type of guy who would find it necessary to kick out Scouts of uncertain beliefs.
    Last edited by Kahuna; 07-07-2013, 06:27 AM.


    • Scouter99
      Scouter99 commented
      Editing a comment
      I don't think there's a line from that Point A to B--in the same letter he says that he has never once kicked out a gay scout despite the rule. So, why would we assume that he would kick out an atheist?

    • NJCubScouter
      NJCubScouter commented
      Editing a comment
      Scouter99, the letter from the departing South Carolina SE is very carefully and cleverly worded, and I think you may be drawing incorrect conclusions from it. In particular I think your words "despite the rule", which he did not use, suggest something that he did not mean. What he said was, "I have never kicked out (or denied) a kid for being gay." He then goes on to (correctly) distinguish between a policy excluding all gay Scouts (which the BSA did not have) and a policy excluding OPENLY gay Scouts (which the BSA DID have, but is now changing.) To me, this suggests two possibilities: One, that he has never encountered an openly gay Scout (that is, a youth member of the BSA) and therefore never had to make the decision to exclude (or not exclude) such a person. I would suspect that this is the case for most SE's in the country. A second possibility is that he HAS excluded an openly gay Scout -- but he does not regard that exclusion as "for being gay", but rather for being OPENLY gay. Either way, the words "despite the rule" would not apply. Then of course, there is a third possibility, that he did encounter an openly gay Scout but decided to defy BSA national, and not enforce the policy. Based on my reading of his entire letter, and based on the whole history of this issue, I don't see this as being very likely, especially since two much more likely possibilities (see above) present themselves.

    • DWise1
      DWise1 commented
      Editing a comment
      Kahuna, it looks like you're arguing that council SEs would be acting on their own based on their own personal prejudices. That doesn't agree with what I observed. Searching through an excerpt of the Rules and Regulations (I have sections in disk files that I had copied out, but my paper hard copies are packed away), I passed by some wording to the effect that councils cannot act on their own, or perhaps more specifically that they may not add nor subtract from membership or other requirements. And what was happening in the 1990's was that mountains of FAXes were flowing up- and down-hill between National and Council, such that Council couldn't even begin to consider to think about scratching itself without getting clearance to do so from National. Control was very highly centralized. Furthermore, my DE informed me that he was required to report every single contact he had and I'm sure that Council has the same requirement to report everything to Regional (albeit summarized) and that Regional had the same requirements to report everything to National. Of course, for day-to-day malfeasance the various levels would be operating as per standing orders, but the orders were still coming from the very top at National.

      I don't think that that SE's situation was that he could no longer act independently, but rather that he didn't agree with the new orders he anticipated coming from National.

  • #32
    Up at moms today.......Blueberrys are peaking...hmmmm..


    • qwazse
      qwazse commented
      Editing a comment
      Took some young adults on a couple miles of the Standing Stone Trail last Friday morning. Huckleberries by the bagful at the look-out just north of Throne Room! A hearty rattle let one young man know that he was picking a little to close to one Timber Rattler's sunning spot!

      A cupful of red raspberries in our garden today.

  • #33
    Had some of my Aunt Jane's signature peach pie with top crust in the shape of stars this weekend .


    • #34
      Refreshing JoeBob, can't stop laughing! Thanks for the Will Rogers logic


      • #35
        So the BSA currently serves 2.7 million youth ....taken from the 2011 BSA annual report.

        Yet we have the highest number of Eagles per year.......


        • #36
          BasementDweller - the ones who stick around are chasing the Eagle. Modern youth don't have the time to be dilettantes - every activity has to result in a check box for a job or a college application. My hypothesis is that we have dropped the youth that used to just come for the fun of it, regardless of advancement. On top of that, there are more materials available for a boy to pencil whip his way through a merit badge (downloadable workbooks from for example).


          • dcsimmons
            dcsimmons commented
            Editing a comment
            Agreed. I've lost kids to 4H and had parents refuse to let their son join the troop without dropping 4H. One or the other, not both. Baseball used to be a spring sport in HS but now it's winter gym, spring practice, spring games, summer ball, fall ball. Same for golf, basketball, etc. Jr. High sports are close behind. Come to the HS coach's clinic or you won't play when you get here. FFA is big here, they start recruiting in Jr. High from the 4H crowd. But with spring/fall fundraisers, planting, harvest, annual convention, oratory/debate contests, and working the home farm, it's a full time commitment.

          • Hal_Crawford
            Hal_Crawford commented
            Editing a comment
            You make a good point. In our troop, most who are still in at the end of 8th grade earn Eagle--usually close to their 18th birthday. Those who have Eagled earlier have stayed in until they aged out and two are currently assistant scoutmasters.

          • st0ut717
            st0ut717 commented
            Editing a comment
            When he was crossing over into boy scouts he was doing Karate, Cub Scouts and Soccer. I said he had to drop one. He chose Soccer because he said getting a black belk and eagle would me more.

            The kids that drop for sports let them
            Kids are starting to specialize earlier.
            Let focus on the kids that want to be scouts first

        • #37
          Originally posted by Twocubdad View Post
          Oh please! If BeAScout is your example of BSA's crackerjack marketing efforts, then any others will be a waste of time and money, too.

          We were one of the first units in the area to configure BeAScout for our troop. In the years since, it has generated precisely TWO leads. But in order to pursue them, I have to check the site manually every day? That's an effective use of my time? We get more inquiries off a very simple district web site which shows a table listing troops, meeting dates and places and my email and phone number. Gee whiz, maybe if they had thought to add a function which would notify unit leaders by email when they get a hit, they could respond. Nah, that makes too much sense.
          I took you at your word that there's no email notification and made myself a right jackass on your account by mentioning the flaw in conversation with a council bigwig the other day, apparently BAS does send an email notification. So, I put in a fake lead on BAS to see for myself, and within seconds myself, the SM, and CoR all got an email.
          Maybe you didn't configure your pin properly.

          Like I originally said, any national-level marketing campaign depends on the 1,000,000 volunteers knowing what they're doing. An ad campaign has to be actionable, and BAS is the action end. BAS is a good start, and any national or council marketing campaign will point to BAS because it's the only comprehensive list of units. If a unit's pin is out of date, that's the unit's fault. If units aren't aware of BAS, that's the fault of their district/council volunteers and professionals.
          Last edited by Scouter99; 07-16-2013, 10:43 AM.