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All about planning and going to Summer Camp

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    • Claim validation is going to be incredibly complicated with the vast number on file with the Court. If I were cynical, I'd say that was part of the reason one group has gathered so many clients; to choke the system and force an allocation of the Trust by simple division. That creates a scenario where potentially specious claims get validated by virtue of an inability to challenge them. Time just doesn't permit it, if the BSA is going to stop bleeding money to pay lawyers already tapping the estate at every turn. Love them or hate them, the insurance company's lawyers will probably be the most aggressive in attacking that wholesale acceptance of claims. BSA, as well, but maybe less so. Ideally and properly, and this is why Troop and LC rolls have been sought by the insurance companies and Tort Claimants Committee, there should be a factual investigation to determine if the people and places included in a claim were where they are said to have been at the times alleged. That would be a step one. Establishing higher level detail and/or corroboration of the allegations of abuse will be tricky. Also, as I understand it, the level of proof required is only the “by a preponderance of the evidence" standard, as in more likely than not to have happened. Once the basic circumstantial facts of people, places and things are confirmed, the rest will be difficult to dispute or disprove.  The Official Sexual Abuse Survivor Claim Form requests information on the LC, Chartering Organization, other leaders in the Troop or LC, and, etc. I've been told some men don't remember so much as the adult's name. Some have a nickname or nothing at all for detail, not even the name of the place where the Troop met. That's not much to go on. Since there are so many claims, I imagine confirming basic facts will be done as best they can and quickly. As to corroboration, that rises to a level of investigation and interviewing they will not take, in my opinion. In my case, they have enough information to indict, prosecute, and convict several people, calling witnesses all day long if this were a criminal case.  Assuming they satisfy a threshold level of factual context, when it finally comes to determining the 'value' of each abuse claim, which is the unfortunate bottom line here being solely about allocated pennies, the Authorized Reviewer(s) will be given a TBD agreed upon metric or grading scale by which to measure and rank the claim. Factors to be weighed include: the fragility/susceptibility of the claimant to damage from abuse; the presence and manner of grooming; the intensity and duration of the abuse; if others were involved in the abuse acts; did the abuser use pornography, take photos or make videos; was there threat of force, violence, stated or implied ramifications for refusal or disclosure; was there special treatment and inducement/rewards; and what were the impacts of the abuse on the claimant's life in multiple areas, including physical, psychological, financial, relational, sexual, educational and professional. There are numerous excellent examples of what the grading and ranking methods look like, particularly from some of the Roman Catholic Church and USA Gymnastics cases. How is all this going to be legitimately verified and established? I don't know. It is a high mountain of claims to trek and lots of data to mine (or not). Again, if the choke point was created both as a means of making more money and to overwhelm the system, it may well work. At the end of the day, the mediators could recommend they slice the pie through a default, “Everyone gets an equal piece because we don't know who deserves more or less." That will be another travesty of the situation. I believe there are lawyers who would strongly object to that, but when negotiations start happening and payday is in sight, the level of compromise that can be sold to a client is about the persuasive skills of the attorneys, the inclination of the deep pockets to settle and the desire of the client/claimants to be done with it and get something. That said, I think the Coalition of Abused Scouts for Justice is the 800 pound gorilla in the mediation room, wielding the largest client list and, thus, enormous power to accept or refuse a proposed Plan of Reorganization. 
    • I've tried to maintain a similar opinion. We've got enough problems on our plates currently with just keeping even the basic parts of our programs going during a pandemic, all we can do face forward and keep going. And for me that means going through whatever comes of the BSA, regardless of whether it falls or not, and beyond into whatever form of scouting program we can maintain. We don't need much to get some kids together and go camping or take on a service project. We've seen groups like the BPSA-US do it with nothing more than a rough outline of a traditional scouting program and a desire to make it happen. Limited support from any kind of national HQ, no regional council, no paid professionals, just volunteers making it work. This thing will go on, with or without the BSA, with or without us. I believe enough in the scouting movement to trust that it will endure. It could live on as nothing more than a local group of kids who want to get together and go camping. But it will live on. That's enough for me to feel good about what we're doing, that no matter what happens at National, here on the ground we are and will continue to do scouting.
    • The English language really doesn’t care about anyone’s faith. “God” is not intrinsically Christian or Jewish. Early Christian missionaries merely heard the word and offered a very specific meaning to it. Setting a word in lower case and omitting the vowel does not make it anywhere near as holy as the Hebrew name that was kept sacred for millennia. But, maybe I missed a verse that says it does. I don’t think we’re doing something more or less disrespectful when grope for alternate terms, we’re just pushing the bounds of English ontology.
    • I know you were listing all of the issues, but which fit this criteria?    I like your food for thought. I think the answer to a lot of the issues for me is head forward, stop looking up the pyramid, even if it falls down, we can still camp as a troop. 
    • To some, not to others. It all depends on one’s faith. My faith doesn’t include capitalizing god. To others to even write the full name of g_d is disrespectful. 
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