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Showing content with the highest reputation on 10/02/18 in all areas

  1. 2 points
    "Hideously flawed man" Sounds like my wife describing me.
  2. 2 points
    Imperfectly. Someone was questioning how this discussion relates to Scouting. One way it relates to Scouting is that Scouting does NOT require its members to believe that our moral code was dictated by a higher power. It merely requires a belief in a higher power. I for one believe that a supernatural force, beyond our comprehension, created the Universe and then probably retreated to the sidelines to watch the show - leaving the creatures on planets that eventually developed “intelligent” life to work out their own moral code(s) the best they could and try to survive in the process. I do realize that there is no organized religion that believes that, religious members of my own religion don’t believe that, and most members of this forum don’t believe that, but the great thing about Scouting is that I can believe that and still live the Scout Oath and Law at the same time.
  3. 1 point
  4. 1 point
    Thank the complaining parents for volunteering to run the Pinewood Derby and tell them you'll forward their names to the Pack Committee for further consideration.
  5. 1 point
    What, like your nonsense replies? I give back what replies deserve. PS: what you have are humans claiming their god wrote the ten commandments. It's still humans all the way up.
  6. 1 point
    Go ahead and argue that it's good. So slavery is moral? You can buy slaves from other countries and leave them as property to your children? But you're getting that from religion. Humans wrote the bible. I see you didn't understand my comment. There ARE unicorns in the bible, and false animal husbandry.
  7. 1 point
    Go right ahead and argue that it's good. This is just silly. Morals are opinions. Gods have nothing to do with it. That's why religions keep changing what is moral or immoral. Christianity said slavery was fine for centuries. How did the SBC change then? They didn't claim their god showed up and corrected them. And your assertion is no different than saying "elves" give people their morality. It's just baseless assertions.
  8. 1 point
    I'm not saying only Christianity is worthless in deciding morals, ALL religions are like that. They are based on assertions that try to be unquestionable. And oh dear, "hate speech", when I'm replying to assertions that atheists can only be moral due to religion.
  9. 1 point
    Even granting that, it still makes religions useless for deciding moral questions. Christianity literally had centuries to call slavery immoral, yet failed to do so. Aquinas was OK with slavery and plenty of popes endorsed it and some owned slaves themselves. All of them? There are over 30 examples. Whataboutism doesn't wave away how worthless religion is for determining morality, it only shows that you're trying to deflect the issue.
  10. 1 point
    Goodness, if only there had been some advance notice of this deadline...
  11. 1 point
    A group of atheists that cooperate would outlast your imaginary brute-force society. There are human fossils that predate the oldest religions on earth that show they were either handicapped or elderly, and lived long past where they would otherwise die without help from other humans. Religions are terrible at morals; the Southern Bapist Convention was founded in 1845 expressly to defend slavery, and they finally officially apologised for it -- in 1995. If a sect as large as the SBC in a religion as large and old as Christianity can't even get a basic moral question like slavery right, I don't consider them useful in deciding moral questions.
  12. 1 point
    Barry, Gender dysphoriais an emotional and psychological condition experienced when a person's gender identity differs from the sex they were assigned at birth. It is a recognized condition. So to not support a youth with gender dysphoria will harm that youth. There have been some people who believe that some youth are being diagnosed as gender dysphoria who might not actually have the condition. One must be an expert to determine what is the appropriate diagnosis - something that adult volunteers are not able to do unless they are a child psychiatrist or psychologist. So to best support youth, we as adult volunteers should leave such determinations to true experts and support their conclusions. As to morality, I agree with others - whose moral standards do you use? The BSA does not prefer any religion and is, thus, non-denominational. As a Christian, I am not aware of a scriptural reference to people with gender identity issues. The BSA's stance seems well reasoned and the correct course for this time in history. In the future, there could be research that modifies what is best for a youth with gender dysphoria. At that time, the new policy might need adjustment. I doubt that will be the case but it is possible.
  13. 1 point
    That is crazy DEs would do that to a unit... unbelievable. If a DE wants a girls Pack in the area and existing Packs are boy only then: - Find a willing CO - Find if any Pack would be interested in mentoring their leaders or identify key council volunteers who will help. - Recruit girls and parents making it clear they would help found a new Pack. Sending then your way is garbage and lazy. In my area 60-70% of the Packs have decided to go coed, but not sure of the results yet. We have at least one girl from another Pack who decided to remain Boy only.
  14. 1 point
    Should not have been a part of the plan. In my district, it was explained to everyone that it was up to each CO to determine if they would accept girls, and if so, would it be an all girl pack or a co-ed pack with separate dens. The caveat however, was that if a pack was not accepting girls, there would be representatives from a pack that would accept them at the school night program. I am not aware if that actually happened, as we have had large numbers of new scouts so far, both boys and girls. in fact, of that 32,000 girl number mentioned recently, the last numbers I heard here in Central Florida Council was that we had brought in 3004 new cubs, 1002 of whom are girls. (this was as of 3 weeks ago). In your particular situation, I think I would contact some one a little higher up in your council and let them know that you had voted to remain boy only and why. I would then inform them that your DE seems to feel that they can force that change on you, and that you plan on following your original plan. It sounds to me as if the DE has decided that if he/she paints you into a corner by having girls show up at roundup, you will give in.
  15. 1 point
    Yep, and it supports my deepest concerns of inexperienced adults leading the program. I can't see it going any direction other than Advancement based Eagle Mill camping programs. Barry
  16. 1 point
    Having seen some of the Scouts I have seen, I might consult with legal counsel first.
  17. 1 point
    There's only so much retraining you can do with older Scouts. I try to avoid telling stories about my troop, because every situation is unique, so there's a chance this can't be replicated. I joined my Troop in 2005 as a new Scout. The Scoutmaster at that time was finishing up his Scoutmastership and was done by 2007. He had us running a great patrol method troop. He was a stern but fair man, and what he excelled at was giving youth leadership room to make their plans and fail or succeed. He was always available to coach the youth, and if the SPL wanted to, he'd have weekly phone calls with the SPL to walk through the meeting and guide the SPL in making a meeting plan. In 2007 one of the committee members took over as Scoutmaster. He was a good man, but he didn't know the behind the scenes aspects of being a Scoutmaster, and when the troop program started to disintegrate without the coaching from Scoutmaster 1, he ended up consolidating things onto the SPL and the adults. The Troop lost most of the it's patrol method aspects (like patrol boxes) aka "The Boys can't be trusted to keep their dishes clean, so we need the Quartermasters to be able to review all the dishes." We went along with this "Troop Method." system the rest of my time as a Scout. I went to NYLT and became SPL in 2009. NYLT was shocking to me and it struck a fire in me. I wanted my troop to be like my NYLT troop. I wanted the autonomy, I wanted the patrol culture and camaraderie that I felt at NYLT. Scoutmaster 2 didn't really understand what went on at NYLT, and 16 year old me wasn't good at selling my ideas to skeptical adults. My initiatives weren't supported, and being 16, I wasn't able to carry them across the finish line myself. I floated into a JASM role after my term, and I spent the next two years helping following SPL's tinker around the edges of our program. In 2012 Scoutmaster 2 stepped down, and the Committee Chair at the time became Scoutmaster 3. He was even more green to the Boy Scout program than Scoutmaster 2. Most of the ASM group had left when Scoutmaster 2 did, since their sons were all around the same age. The Scoutmaster group dwindled to our Scoutmaster 3, and 3 ASMS, two of which had sons in junior year of high school and weren't around as much. At that point, I was 18-19 years old, and was still hanging around the troop to help my younger friends earn their Eagle. Long story short, I became an ASM because I was around. I spent much of my time coaching the SPL as I had done as a senior scout. I did my best to start selling patrol method ideas with Scoutmaster 3, but he still didn't "get it" until about 2014 when his son went to NYLT. It was really a metaphorical lightbulb moment for him. All the gibberish that I'd been trying to do clicked. We had a group of 5 Scouts that were in the same grade and became SPL's back to back for 2.5 years including Scoutmaster 3s son. Scoutmaster 3 and I started working with those 5 youth, all NYLT trained, to start putting the pieces back together on the patrol method. Some of the older Scouts and adults resisted. They didn't see the point or they thought it would take away from advancement, or being unsafe, or other stuff like that. I actually went to a Committee meeting and basically did a Patrol Method presentation to get buy in from them. Our youth sold their peers for the most part. From 2014-2016 the troop really ran itself thanks to those older Scouts. Scoutmaster 3 and I went to Wood Badge together 2015. We started building an ASM culture that would support the patrol method. This year, 2018, Scoutmaster 3 stepped down. His son had aged out in 2017, and it was time to pass the torch. Scoutmaster 4 has been in the job for a few months, but our culture we've created has made him far ahead of where Scoutmaster 2 and 3 were when they started. We still have a great ASM team in place for at least another year, and we're actively hunting the next generation to join us. Our youth leadership is engaged, but there are always challenges with youth, that don't go away. Even with a youth lead troop running the patrol method, it's not all rainbows and unicorns. (I just got home from a Troop meeting.) So @AltadenaCraig for your troop. Don't abandon those older Scouts. They really don't know what they are missing, or what it will mean for them. They're like adults often are, resistant to change. You'll need to sell them. The same goes for adults. Adults are key, because they can block your progress either overtly or on accident. Keep building that nucleus you have with your younger scouts. When they hit the leadership positions in your troop, the dam will break, and progress will catapult forward. I don't like this story because I feel like I'm tooting my own horn to much. It's not about me really, other than I had the vision and sold others on it.It's not than NYLT is some magic bullet, although it was certainly part of what fast-tracked us. The takeaway I want you to get from this is that there's a broader framework to this. Sell your adults. Find your older Scouts that will buy in, keep developing the patrol method with your younger Scouts. Start building that culture. Sell your vision to anybody that will stand to listen. It will take time. My Troop is finally hitting where I'd like it to be after we started putting the pieces together in 2014. If you're the Scoutmaster, you've already got a big part of it down. If your an ASM, you have an additional hurdle to clear to sell the Scoutmaster first. I'm happy to share some documents I've written with you, have a phone call to discuss. PM me if you'd like.
  18. 1 point
    This happens a lot with SM changes. I have helped and observed a lot of troops where the new SM wanted to change the program and I have learned that change pretty much comes from the new and younger Scouts. I now advise SMs in your situation to pacify the older Scouts with the program they want and build your new program with the new Scouts. Older Scouts (in this case 13 and older) simply don’t like change. Building new with younger Scouts is a lot less stress on everybody. It seems like two groups in one program will be a hassle, but you will find the older Scouts will pretty much take care of themselves. They will fall in for Troop assembly then go do their thing. The ones who want to advance will come to you. Ironically leaving the older Scouts to their program is the Patrol Method you are wanting anyway. They just aren’t great role models for the younger Scouts. In fact you can present the idea to them as an experiment and become the older Scouts hero. Trust me, they will love you for it. Barry
  19. 1 point
    You have the right idea, it's about inertia. But isn't that the older scouts running the program. I don't understand why you don't see taking on more of the troop responsibility isn't boosting the flywheel that will keep them engaged. This is where I see adults fail, they don't know how to build it up. Everything, I MEAN EVERYTHING, should be reviewed to improve for the next time. Especially the adult part of the program. They should also be reviewing how the "Planning, communication, feedback, dealing with negative scouts". I've said before that to most common questions ask by participants in my Scoutmaster Specific class was uniforming and discipline. Discipline is complicated at the adult level, so you can imagine how it is at the scout level when trying to get the scouts to take on the responsibility. The way we handled discipline when we started our program was 180 degrees different from how we were dealing with 10 years later. To mature as a boy run program (to keep the inertia continuing), the adults and scouts have to strive to do it better than the last time, every time. This is a major problem with adults. They always want to make things better by making them more complicated. The treasure wants to use a new computer program they they have used in their business, and that nobody else can touch after they leave. The Advancement Chair always has a new and better way to track advancement. And on and on. We eventually developed a philosophy that a scout had to be partnered with each committee adult every time the adult came up with a new idea. That force the adult to look at ANYTHING from a more simplistic perspective. I used to teach, "if you are going to make changes, ALWAYS simplify to the scout level". Don't let boy run got overrun with adults' good ideas. Very well said. There are a few successful Crew/Troops out there, but very few. Running two programs together is complicated and requires an adult with a good understanding of the big picture to make the concept work because it does require more adult intervention overhead. Personally I see no advantage of adding a crew. Our troop planned more high adventure than most of the crews in our area. Our youth leadership is more consistent because the Patrols supported the troop leadership structure. The only ONLY advantage I can see with adding a crew is to get girls into the program. Adding a crew to the troop boy run program just to add girls is a huge risk because the troop requires the older scouts and youth leadership to mixed into the program, not just close or nearby. The patrols still need older scouts in the patrols. Sadly, many (most) adults think see a crew as just high adventure. It's not. It's character development just like a troop, and part of the development is running the program. Not just showing up friday night to camp all weekend. Boy run is about about youth taking a group of youth to youth planned activities. When the youth start leaving any of the decisions to the adults, they are stepping back from a boy run program. Three out of five crews fail after the first four years because they didn't have good adults who understand how to build a boy run style program. The programs turned into camping clubs, and even high adventure gets boring. As I said eariler, what keeps older scouts in the program is the challenge of running the program and growing from the challenge. The best programs are the ones where the scouts go home saying to themselves, "I like myself when I'm with the troop, or crew". That kind of feeling comes from achieving above what you thought was capable. Adding a crew to a troop program to improve the troop program is the WORST reason for combining the two programs. Success requires putting the two successful programs together to build a more successful program. As I used to advise units around here, if you can't build a successful boy run troop program, what makes you think you can build a successful crew program? I know of only one successful true boy run program that combines the crew and troop together. Cliff Golden' of Troop 33. Cliff is the most boy run scouter I know of and was one of my mentors when I was a Scoutmaster. That program has a reputation for being as active with the community as it is with outdoor adventure. Cliff added the crew so he could bring in girls. They are the luckiest girls in scouting. Cliff used to be member of this forum. But he wasn't very active here because he was busy doing scouting stuff. Barry
  20. 1 point
    I agree in principle. The how and when though is not obvious to many. First if the PL is struggling with "setting up a tarp", I immediately wonder what the older boys who know how are doing at that moment. If it were at a troop meeting, the PLC decided on that activity, did they have an instructor ? if no older boy was available, then they could have planned to have an ASM demo. If it were on a campout, then I wonder why the PLC didnt plan to instruct this at the prior troop meeting, or again where are the older boys. If none are available, then I might ask to see the PL, and away from his patrol teach him how to do it. Then he could go back to his patrol and teach them. I am sure this is what you were getting at, but the nuance on the how to do it without "impinging on their leadership" is not obvious to many adults. As you pointed out, they interpreted their role as "hands-off", which tells me they had difficulty seeing the nuances. Props to you for showing them how to move towards "hands-off" as a goal but not the means.
  21. 1 point
    When I started working with my current troop (now on 10+ years ago) the go to attitude was can't go down and interfere with the Scouts, they have to figure it out. I had (on my first campout) a good discussion with active troop leaders, explained sure you can. We are to observe and mentor. They explained the long time SM (who did not attend outings regularly) direct that. I knew him and felt it was a misinterpretation. Guess what, it was. They took "don't do things for a scout he can do for himself" as Hands Off. Take for example setting up a tarp. If they have never really set one up, how do Scouts know how to do it properly, tricks, etc. You can mentor and advise the PL on what maybe the next steps should be without impinging on their leadership. Again, observe and mentor. Same with tent placements, cooking, etc. Patrols can clearly function with leaders around, the leader needs to clearly understand their role. It is the Scouts patrol and not the leaderts. They are not in fact a "leader", they are are in fact an advisor or mentor.
  22. 1 point
    Gentlemen, thank you for your posts...both made my day. Kudos to all who are still striving.
  23. 1 point
    It exists, and we created it. Let me provide some examples. Pinewood derby - when the winning car comes from the kid whose family has the tool set at home to build the perfect racer or art object. They get the awards, while the kids who actually did it himself goes home discouraged. The next year, other parents learn the rules of the game and take over. Campsite pioneering projects - where the camp rewards the 2:00 AM dads, while the Troop of boys whose gateway is a lashed collection of random poles and lines (but with proper knots) does not place. The next year, adult leaders either take charge - or the Troop votes to not bother with that part of the contest. Eagle projects - where someone at the Council starts adding requirements until the only way to get approved is to have a parent used to running RFPs, procurement, or large-scale construction projects involved. Eagle being marketed as the most important thing in the world means that parents quickly realize the only path forward is to take control. I can give similar observations for science fair, the dreaded California Mission projects, or other ways the school issue homework that can only be completed to the teacher's satisfaction when parents become heavily involved. We can be the ones in the way, insisting on only working with the youth. BUT. We also must ensure that what we require is appropriate for the youth we are mentoring, and that we are not adding to the requirements in such a way as to make it impossible (or improbable) that a youth can complete on their own.
  24. 0 points
    I think the BSA's decades-long disparagement of atheists both by word and deed contributes to the slurs against atheists in this forum. You know, like when scouts write things like "Merlyn ... You're the Stalin of the web era", as if I'm equivalent to a mass murderer. Oh, that was you who wrote that.
  25. 0 points
    Update 10/1/18 One scout has died. https://abcnews.go.com/US/driver-charged-dui-plowing-group-boy-scouts-critically/story?id=58197864 https://abc7ny.com/1-dead-man-charged-with-dwi-after-car-plows-into-boy-scouts/4377783/