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  2. T2Eagle

    And so it begins

    We've had a number of scouts over the years who were not US citizens. We generally left it up to them how to handle the Pledge. Most of them just salute and say it in rote without thought just like the rest of the scouts. A few would salute but stay silent because that called the least attention to themselves. A couple more just stood respectfully. Requiring the citizen of another country to pledge allegiance to the US seems silly at best. Requiring a scout to enunciate an oath or prayer that is actually in violation of their religion seems like a compete break with the 12th point of the Scout law. When I attend religious services other than my own I act respectfully, but I don't recite any prayers that are in contradiction with my own beliefs, and I can't imagine that anyone would expect me to. Jehovah Witnesses are no less American and no less patriotic just because they refrain from taking oaths.
  3. NJCubScouter

    And so it begins

    I agree. He was a person of his time. If he were alive today he would be a person of our time, and his opinions would not necessarily be the same.
  4. NJCubScouter

    And so it begins

    It isn't necessarily anybody's "failure." It's just the way things are.
  5. MattR

    As we approach 1 Feb 19...

    Just a thought, but does part of the demise of the OA have to do with poor leadership skills of the scouts? I look at my local chapter's OA and the scouts that show up are good scouts, but they're all shy, timid, not ready to take charge. If they had confidence in how to get things done there are adults that would like to help them out. Instead they're kind of waiting for someone to tell them what to do. The result is any other scout that comes to check it out doesn't really see a reason to stick around. Would leadership development within OA help?
  6. ParkMan

    As we approach 1 Feb 19...

    Thanks @desertrat77 & @Eagle94-A1 - this helps me to understand better. Our troop currently has some more active OA members. I think we've got some Scouts who like Scouting, but are looking for something a little bigger than the troop experience. They seem to like the ability to help organize the District Camporee. Another thing I hear is that it gives them another group of older Scouts to spend time with. Since I'm not an OA member I can't really comment on the state of the OA. From what I see here locally some boys like being involved at that next level of Scouting - so perhaps there's a good opportunity here. Get the OA chapters to focus around bringing together great campers and focus there. More advanced OA trips full of older scouts. I've got to imagine that no-one is going to stop an OA chapter from doing that. Yeah, perhaps the books and events are all focused differently - but I've got to think you can add new elements. Sorry if this doesn't make any sense. I just hear the concerns and think about all the possibilities we have to do really fun things with these Scouts. I get that if we think about it from the perspective of what we used to do, but no longer can, it's discouraging. But, when I think about it from the perspective of all the possibilities I'm encouraged. If we really do have a society of of our strongest Scouts looking for a new purpose - what a great opportunity.
  7. ianwilkins

    And so it begins

    As an aside, nice to see in that article the old trope that Baden Powell would be spinning in his grave. [eye roll]
  8. Eagledad

    And so it begins

    I think you would find the programs those of us who emphasize religion more in these discussion are about the same as those who emphasize it less. But the discussion is about the premise of the scouting program. Religion is the bases for the foundation of Scout Law and Oath, which are the values for preparing young people to make ethical and moral choices over their lifetime. As long as the values reflect back to god, then the scout leader can refer and balance his judgement to the family. And the scout can balance Scoutmaster's judgment with his god. God is single point quality assurance. Barry
  9. Treflienne

    And so it begins

    How do you handle the case of boys that are not U.S. citizens? Hardly seems appropiate to compel them to pledge allegience to the U.S. (The scout oath in BSA is no problem since the wording is "my country". I found @Cambridgeskip's link interesting about the alternative Scout Promise in the UK for kids who are not British subjects are don't have a duty to the Queen)
  10. WonderBoy

    Hello

    Welcome! Be careful what you wish for. You may end up drowning in information. 😁
  11. NJCubScouter

    And so it begins

    I did. I then changed my mind about whether I wanted to discuss it again.
  12. Eagledad

    And so it begins

    That's mans failure, not god, or God. LOL, I know. But you did ask. Barry
  13. thrifty

    And so it begins

    I concur with Parkman's thoughts. The troop my son joined had no chaplain aide, said no prayer before meals and had no sunday services. Our CO has never had any interest in being involved with the scouts either, the church is just a place to meet. Religion was never emphasized in my son's pack or troop (or when I was a cub 30+ years ago). It has only been in the past year that one vocal parent has gotten the troop to say grace and if a scout wants to be a CA, he is welcome to do so. IMO I think the troop leadership just felt that duty to god was best dealt with at home. I was surprised to see how much religion was emphasized by some scouters when I first joined these forums.
  14. Today
  15. Pale Horse

    And so it begins

    Even among Christians, all professed to believe in the same God, there is extreme subjectivity in what is constitutes appropriate thoughts, attitudes, and behaviour.
  16. NJCubScouter

    And so it begins

    We have had this exact same discussion several times, it probably is not necessary to have it again right now.
  17. Eagledad

    And so it begins

    It means, without god, all judgment is by man. Since man often disagrees with their neighbor, there is no objective guidance for behavior. Barry
  18. NJCubScouter

    And so it begins

    Does that mean he is required to salute the flag and say the Pledge of Allegiance even though his religion tells him not to? Just out of curiosity, does he wear the American Flag patch on his uniform?
  19. NJCubScouter

    And so it begins

    I'm not sure what that means.
  20. ValleyBoy

    And so it begins

    We have a Jehovah Witness that joined our troop several months ago. His grandmother informed us that he does not say the Pledge of Allegiance or salute the flag since in there Church they see it as Idol worship. She has been told that in our Troop we will salute the flag while saying the Pledge of Allegiance, This is one point in the scouting program that we will not change as a unit. Also as adult leaders of the unit we have informed the unit committee that as leaders of the unit we will hold this youth to the same requirements for advancement as the other scouts when it comes to the subject of the Pledge of Allegiance and any Flag ceremony that the Troop takes part in.
  21. ianwilkins

    And so it begins

    It was evolution, no designer. It took all the time in the world. Current science says earth is 4.51 Billion years old, and life first started about 3.8 BILLION years ago. The first fossils with eyes date from about 540 million years ago...so that's 3.3 billion years to evolve the eye...seems eminently feasible to me.
  22. RichardB

    Scouts BSA FAQ dated 9/14/18

    https://www.scouting.org/familyscouting/ is the one source of truth from the national council.
  23. ianwilkins

    And so it begins

    It's an opinion piece. As we in the UK would say, tomorrow's chip paper. And arguments about god's place in scouting? That's nothing new. I mean, usenet used to have a ggg group, and a pretty unedifying place it was too.
  24. walk in the woods

    As we approach 1 Feb 19...

    I recently had the opportunity to discuss OA Troop Rep position with a number of Scoutmasters. "Better things to do with their time" was a recurring theme in the discussion about sash and dash. Many of the units in my council do not attend our council summer camp so they have no connection to the service given the camp. I was surprised when I came back to scouting as an adult at what the Ordeal had become. First it was being done multiple times a year instead of just at summer camp (don't want the scouts missing MB class). Second, the Ordeal on the work weekends wrapped up mid afternoon instead of that evening so the scouts could gave social time. The ceremonies are much better in the dark and the early wrap just gave adults the opportunity to grab their scouts and bolt Saturday after supper. And don't get me started on how few members attended or joined the work parties.
  25. In the late nineteen eighties my Scoutmaster was a rather jolly fat man with a curly beard and a chew-can ring in all his back pockets. He found laughter in most everything as I recall, appropriate or not. When I hear things at Scouting U like, "if you can't act like a 10 year-old, then you shouldn't be in scouting," well he comes right to mind.

    He had a brown with tan stripe truck that hauled scouts and equipment every direction for a few years. Inside that 80's Chevy Scottsdale of his at all times was a cassette tape of Chuck Berry's greatest hits. The last song on the B side was My ding-a-ling (2 bells on a string). There wasn't a hike, camp-out, camparee, or outing where he didn't manage to squeeze in at least one play. And if one of the boys riding with him was quick enough to hit the repeat button on the tapedeck before his hand got smacked, we might hear it an extra time or two. It always started us off with a laugh or lolled us to sleep smiling on the drive home. I still sing it now and again when camping or flirting. Or showing off for my son.

    Now the Scoutmaster was far from Santa and the song is equally distant from anything that could be called a carol, yet as the end of the year draws near and the holiday cheer comes around...some of the coincidental similarities have my brain humming that old Chuck Berry tune. Any time I hear a Salvation Army station outside store fronts ringing thier bells, or clanky bells on doors. Happy Holidays to all my friends in scouting, new and old.

    https://youtu.be/UaEC-lWSlmI

  26. RememberSchiff

    Scouts BSA FAQ dated 9/14/18

    I found this which appears to be an updated version: http://svmbc.org/svmbc/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/Scouts-BSA-Program-Information-and-FAQ-10.8.18-Update.pdf
  27. Oldscout448

    As we approach 1 Feb 19...

    Wow just wow. In a case like this I would " haze" him in a heartbeat. Or perhaps separate him by a few miles, and "forget" to pick him back up until after the ceremony was over.
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  • Posts

    • We've had a number of scouts over the years who were not US citizens.  We generally left it up to them how to handle the Pledge.  Most of them just salute and say it in rote without thought just like the rest of the scouts.  A few would salute but stay silent because that called the least attention to themselves.  A couple more just stood respectfully. Requiring the citizen of another country to pledge allegiance to the US seems silly at best.  Requiring a scout to enunciate an oath or prayer that is actually in violation of their religion seems like a compete break with the 12th point of the Scout law.  When I attend religious services other than my own I act respectfully, but I don't recite any prayers that are in contradiction with my own beliefs, and I can't imagine that anyone would expect me to.   Jehovah Witnesses are no less American and no less patriotic just because they refrain from taking oaths.  
    • I agree.  He was a person of his time.  If he were alive today he would be a person of our time, and his opinions would not necessarily be the same.
    • It isn't necessarily anybody's "failure."  It's just the way things are.
    • Just a thought, but does part of the demise of the OA have to do with poor leadership skills of the scouts? I look at my local chapter's OA and the scouts that show up are good scouts, but they're all shy, timid, not ready to take charge. If they had confidence in how to get things done there are adults that would like to help them out. Instead they're kind of waiting for someone to tell them what to do. The result is any other scout that comes to check it out doesn't really see a reason to stick around. Would leadership development within OA help?
    • Thanks @desertrat77 & @Eagle94-A1 - this helps me to understand better. Our troop currently has some more active OA members.  I think we've got some Scouts who like Scouting, but are looking for something a little bigger than the troop experience.  They seem to like the ability to help organize the District Camporee.  Another thing I hear is that it gives them another group of older Scouts to spend time with. Since I'm not an OA member I can't really comment on the state of the OA.  From what I see here locally some boys like being involved at that next level of Scouting - so perhaps there's a good opportunity here.  Get the OA chapters to focus around bringing together great campers and focus there.  More advanced OA trips full of older scouts.  I've got to imagine that no-one is going to stop an OA chapter from doing that.  Yeah, perhaps the books and events are all focused differently - but I've got to think you can add new elements. Sorry if this doesn't make any sense.  I just hear the concerns and think about all the possibilities we have to do really fun things with these Scouts.  I get that if we think about it from the perspective of what we used to do, but no longer can, it's discouraging.  But, when I think about it from the perspective of all the possibilities I'm encouraged. If we really do have a society of of our strongest Scouts looking for a new purpose - what a great opportunity.  
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