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  • #46
    It's really not a matter of if you withold your reccommendation (right now it sounds like you don't want to give it), but for how long?

    Then, if you do so you may need to decide -- maybe along with your officers -- if suspension is in order.


    • #47
      I'm in Mike F's corner on this one. This "boys will be boys" until someone gets hurt is the wrong way to go. If the behavior is wrong, then don't allow it. Don't wait for an injury.
      This reminds me of a drunk driver causing injury or death. To me, it's simple ... the crime is driving drunk; not killing someone. The trouble is that action isn't taken until somebody dies. If we approach this as Mike F suggests, we prevent the accident from occuring (or at least we try). If we do nothing, people get hurt. These boys who are just acting like boys will someday be driving cars while intoxicated. Do we wait for them to kill somebody before we tell them it's wrong? We're in the example setting business. Let's do our job, and teach others to do likewise.


      • #48
        Hmmm, sorry, but the problem isn't the action, it's the consequences. When I assault someone, the problem isn't the action, it's the pain and suffering on the victim that is unfortunate side issue to some, but not me. Same for the drunk driver, the problem isn't the driving, it's the pain and suffering for the victim and/or family that is an unfortunate side issues, but not me. The reason the rules say not assaulting others and no drunk driving isn't to keep people from doing those things, but to protect the unfortunate victims it causes. To simply slap the boy on the wrist for hurting someone else isn't the issue. The issue is: he chose to inflict harm on another, now man up and take the consequences, your victim didn't have a choice. The one making the decisions is ultimately responsible and must be held accountable. Same for the drunk, he's responsible for the death or injury of others because of his choice, he's held responsible for it all from the key turn to the funeral.



        • #49
          So, in other words, even though we're in the character building business, we just let kids do whatever they please (even if not living up to our Oath and Law) until someone gets hurt. Then we call the sheriff. Makes sense to me.


          • #50
            >>I'm in Mike F's corner on this one. This "boys will be boys" until someone gets hurt is the wrong way to go. If the behavior is wrong, then don't allow it.


            • #51
              My thoughts here:

              THE VENTURING OATH:
              As a Venturer, I promise to do my duty to God and help strengthen America, to help others, and to seek truth, fairness, and adventure in our world.

              VENTURING CODE

              As a Venturer, I believe that America's strength lies in our trust in God and in the courage, strength, and traditions of our people. I will, therefore, be faithful in my religious duties and will maintain a personal sense of honor in my own life. I will treasure my American heritage and will do all I can to preserve and enrich it. I will recognize the dignity and worth of all humanity and will use fair play and goodwill in my daily life. I will acquire the Venturing attitude that seeks truth in all things and adventure on the frontiers of our changing world.

              Real simple in my world: Call your District Advancement Chairman. Get him in on the story. This Venturer does not get Gold anytime soon. Ask him how he "recognizes the dignity and worth of all humanity and uses fair play and goodwill in his daily life." ???

              Right now, in my world, this youth does not have any acceptable answer. A year or two from now is another story.


              • #52
                From the Venturing Gold Award Application -

                "Certification of Candidate:
                Since becoming a candidate for the Gold Award, I have planned, developed,
                and completed the activities and projects required for qualification for the

                How can this young man attest to the last line? How can you, and your CC approve this based on the fact 1) he sexually harassed young women in the Crew at least twice, and 2) he assaulted a boy and put him in the hospital?

                It does NOT matter that one of the assaults happened with the Troop and not the Crew. Does the Venturing Oath, and the principals of the BSA apply only to select activities?


                • #53
                  Dear Group-
                  We recently had a situation involving this game. We terminated one member-and there are other boys for which we plan to suspend for 2-3 months, and then require parent attendance for a probationary period to determine if the behavior will stop/improve.
                  Extreme difficulty in that a recently appointed CC is parent of one of the boys. While preparing the evening meal-I returned to the cooking area and witness half of the boys running around with their hands covering themselves to protect. Immediately made them stop. at least half the boys walked away-refused to play-but several encouraged it-including youth leaders. We feel that a 2-3 month suspension is valid.

                  The DE/SE knows because we mentioned several participants by name when we cc'd them on the removal of the one scout permanently.
                  We also had issue of direct disobedience of leaders orders from some of these same boys, and since we are on the water-a sea scout ship-this sort of defiance can turn to very unsafe situations. We found the same boys sneaking to use their electronic devices-falling asleep on watches-disregarding safe seamanship and operating protocols, and simply not doing the jobs of ships operations for which the boat-the crew and the leaders safety depend.


                  • #54
                    We-leaders, were also falsely accused of a variety of things by some of the youth who participated in this game. Thankful that there were at times up to 4 adults present, and that we had kept a log of every incident. In the future We will not even blink. Scout is sent home. No second chances-No negotiation. I am now working with leadership to write the letters to these boys parents. I've never had to do this before, and while I am still a bit shell shocked by the entire situation, I feel we have to take this stand. The repercussions from this incident have really shaken my faith in why I'm volunteering with BSA. I was a youth member, and received the highest Rank in Sea Scouting-Quartermaster-and have held a number of leadership positions with 2 units totaling over 25 years of service over the past 40 years. I've served as council aquatics comm chair-worked on camp waterfront acquisitions , risk assessment, created a 501c3 organization for our chartered partner, partnered with a local sailing club, and now have 26 youth and 8 leaders in a unit that is only 2 years old.

                    But for the past 2 weeks I sit in my living room and realize that I will never feel the same way about scouting again. Any kid-at any time can accuse me of something that is false. Do I want to put my family and myself in this position ? Is there a target on my back because BSA has paid out countless dollars, and scheming parents see this as an opportunity? I've been a Jr. National coach and small boat instructor at our yacht club for over 15 years-And NEVER has this kind of craziness happened in their program. It saddens me to think that what we are doing as scout leaders is more behavior modification-dealing with kids who have underlying personality disorders, and feeling unprotected unless 4 other adults are with eye/earshot. I will say that our DE/SE has been there and been supportive. But moving past this may nto be in my bag of courage-and I really have to come to grips with the reality of this kind of exposure and liability.


                    • #55
                      I dont know where this was ever determined HAZING. Hell we did it as youth, its just a stupid game like the cinnamon test or the new light myself on fire test. Its Kids being KIDS, let them be kids


                      • #56
                        While this is no where near acceptable behavior, this is far from a new fad. This type of thing was going on when I was a kid in scouts 15-20 years ago. Acceptable - NO. Hazing - Not even close


                        • #57
                          There is NEVER any reason to humiliate, or purposely physically harm anyone in Scouting. Any organization that dictates such activity as a requirement for membership, or allows such to happen or otherwise encourages it does not equate to the Scouting ideals with which I am familiar.
                          When my son became a Cub Scout, I noted the "tradition" of holding a Cub up-side-down to receive his Bobcat pin. I immediately protested this and , much to some adults chagrin, it stopped. "But all the Cubs before did it." No, not all of them did. Someone, somewhen, DECIDED that it needed to be done. Why? To prove what? The Cub is rightfully proud to receive his pin, he earned it, yes? Why make him a source of embarrassed entertainment?

                          "Boys will be boys", indeed, but my boy will not be THAT kind of boy. He has been on the receiving end of similar behavior (not the "sacking") and by our discussion, sees the "other" in himself. This is what is lacking in all fraternity hazing, bullying and such. The actor never sees himself in the "other", only someone who must be "educated" or "made to be worthy" or "made to be subservient" to their "betters" or "seniors".

                          Look up "cognitive dissonance".

                          When I was asked to join the High School service club, I felt honored, right up to when I was interviewed by the Club BoD. The teacher advisor was present. The most of them, all of whom I knew, asked some really good questions about why, and what and how. Then one of them asked if I sh*t in lumps? I responded how was that germane to this club? Perhaps this was not the club I should join. The advisor was obviously non-plussed and that was the end of my interview. I joined and the asker was not as happy the next time I saw him.

                          It is sufficient that I know the Scout has promised to abide by the Scout Promise and Scout Law. If he doesn't, then that is the reason for the next discussion with him AND if necessary, his parents.


                          • #58
                            H2O, just keep in mind
                            1. Someone before you took risks while you were a youth member in their unit.
                            2. Other organizations have skeletons, and their small numbers allow them to keep things closeted quite well.
                            3. Your depth of leadership shielded you from false accusations.
                            4. The situation is no more delicate because the CC's boy was a perpetrator.
                            5. It takes a while for emotions to subside when things like this happen.
                            6. Success is still possible.

                            I would not split hairs over defining hazing or not. Conspiring to deliver blunt force trauma to fellow scouts needs no other label.
                            Untimely electronics use leading to a missed watch is more an operations issue. Youth leaders, with some guidance on your part, should be responsible for ship discipline.

                            It's fair to let your most trusted youth leaders that you feel like quitting.

                            As far as letters to parents, no more than four sentences. "Johnny was found doing __. It was unbecoming of a scout. He is suspended from ship activities until __. If, after that he wishes to resume ship life, he may request a conference with me and the boatswain."

                            There is simply nothing more that you need to say.


                            • #59
                              This isnt a "scout" issue. Fine, tell the boys when you are hoovering over them that this activity is not condoned at scouting events. No issue with that. You can't control what they do at school though.


                              • #60
                                Thank you so much for the advice on the letter. It makes the point. The incidents are not open for discussion. The adult leaders have reviewed situation. Its a take it or leave it scenario. Protects us-protects BSA, and keeps the matter confidential in all ways.
                                I think we will simply tell other youth leaders those members are on a leave of absence, and will return on probationary status should they decide to continue in the Unit.

                                You are right about past leaders of my youth. I was a kid who got a few 30 day suspensions-until I realized I would not get more responsibility if I continued on that path. I wanted to be there. When I couldn't participate I realized just how important the program was to me-my sense of well being-my friends-and adults who would often put up with more than parents ever would. The activities were challenging-exciting-took skill and dedication-and taught me about a most important thing-responsibility for the safety of others. I wanted the trust of the leaders.
                                Thank you for giving me these ideas. its been a really tough 2 weeks and I want closure on this to move forward.
                                I plan to share your ideas with our leadership. BTW-I'm a leader and also the COR.