Unfortunately, National has it's own "volunteer force" that make a lot of these decisions. Believe me when I say there is a HUGE disconnect between those in Dallas and those in the field. We all feel that, pros and volunteers alike. There are a lot of things they do that make all of us bang our heads on our desks.
I think Volunteers have every right to complain, the program happens with y'all, but taking it out on Unit-Serving Executives is not the right way to do things. Believe it or not, we all want the same thing; to provide a quality program to youth. Refusing to give to FoS or sell popcorn because you're mad at National for changing the color of the shoulder loop from red to green only hurts yourself. (I use that example because that actually happened).
It's a cop out, but I don't really have an answer because I'm still trying to figure it out myself. And for what it's worth, I went through the program as a kid and spent some time as a unit volunteer before sewing on the executive patch
A couple of changes, or just discrepancies, that I see between these guidelines and even the brand new YPT I just took:
“Youth sharing tents should be no more than two years apart in age.” There’s no mention of siblings.
“In all other programs youth and adults tent separately.” This precludes a youth sharing a tent with a parent. This isn’t a common occurrence, but I’ve had it happen. Certainly cannot think of any way the rule makes sense.
@carebear3895 As a professional Scouter, you have a unique perspective. I'm curious to know your thoughts ...
When BSA National makes membership decisions and program changes that are objectionable to many of us in the volunteer force (indeed, with complete disregard and defiance to our opinions), what do you think is the correct response we should have?
The "offensive weapons" part is a legal term. That is what that policy is getting at. It's not saying the scout association says it, it means the law says it. Like it or not the law defines knives as such and as an organisation we have to work within the law. So unless the knife falls within certain parameters (3 inches or less in length, folds away and does not lock) the law says you need to have a reason for having it about your person. My point is that the scout policy makes sense when seen in the context of working within that.
It doesn't meant you can't have and use one. I'll be hiking in a remote part of scotland next month. I will certainly have it about me then. I will probably walk to the local shop tomorrow. I won't have it with me then. Why would I?
The policy (and it is guidance by the way, not a set rule) does not prevent scouts using knives, they certainly do, but part of it is not just training them in how to use them in their hand but also to get into habits that mean they don't get arrested. We had a survival skills camp back in March. They had them in their pockets then because the nature of the program meant they were using them a lot. We had a camp earlier this month as part of the national archery tournament. The scouts took knives but left them in their tents for the most part. As I say, it's partly about training them not to fall foul of the law.
I'm sorry but this is incredibly shortsighted and frankly insulting to a lot of good professionals out there. We work TOGETHER to provide a program FOR THE YOUTH.
Do I think National execs and some SE's make too much? Yea, i kinda do. But to think cutting their salaries is the magical fix to all the problems with the BSA, that's just silly. I try to be humble about our jobs because this truly is a volunteer driven organization, but to say we do nothing to support the units pisses me off to no end. Don't for one second think i'm doing this job to give my boss a bigger paycheck, I do it because I want to grow this program I love.