Jump to content


Popular Content

Showing content with the highest reputation on 11/21/19 in all areas

  1. 5 points
    One evening an old Cherokee told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people. He said, "My son, the battle is between two "wolves" inside us all. One is Evil. It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego. The other is good. It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith." The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather: "Which wolf wins?" The old Cherokee simply replied, "The one you feed."
  2. 3 points
    signs signals and codes are easy for Sea Scouts....just saying 🙂
  3. 2 points
    I hope and pray my thoughts here will be articulated in a way that will generate a positive response and greater unity of understanding and discourse by those who read it. I notice that the impending separation of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and the Boy Scouts of America has garnered much discussion about the motivations, ideology and mechanics behind this process. However, as I member of that faith, I also see that there has been an unfortunate trend by some to use this as an opportunity to make sideway comments voicing their opinions about our beliefs, our organization, our doctrines, our history, et cetera. It is entirely appropriate and healthy to maintain an open dialogue about how these coming changes will affect Scouting, the youth, the programs, and all other such related issues. It is also good to ask questions about why our church is making these changes and where our thoughts and feelings come from. However, is it appropriate for these discussions to be used as a platform for members to express incorrect information or inflammatory opinions about our faith? Is that a Scout-like thing to do? Is it ever right to deride in any way a religion or its leadership, to make accusations or spread calumny about another's faith? I cannot believe that it is. I do not only express this concern as a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I speak thus on behalf of any and all faiths - Judaism, Islam, Buddhist, Hindu, Protestant, Evangelical, even atheist - whatever it may be, it behooves us to speak with nothing but respect and kindness about the religions of others - especially those of a fellow American. I think we can do better in these forums in regards to preserving goodwill between all faiths. I will gladly strive to improve my discourse here in regards to the ideals and thoughts of others, but that means I hope for the same from all here. That concept, the concept of fighting to preserve the right of all people to live and express their faith, is central to Scouting. A Scout is brave; a Scout is reverent. Those go hand in hand. Joseph Smith Jr. himself one wrote: So as we discuss at length the tremendous wave of changes that both the Church and Scouting face with the coming of the new year, let's keep the discussions kind and civil, and not use them to put down ANY faith or religion, whether explicitly or subtly. This website, filled with the thoughts of Scouters, leaders, and good people, should be an example of goodwill, grace, and respect. Let's watch what we say, and how we say it. I hope I am not too forward in sharing my feelings about this here, but know that I commit myself to do better from here on out before asking it of any of you. I hope others might be willing to do the same.
  4. 2 points
    Taught Paul Bunyan. Heated our home with firewood for 35 years. Splitting: Aim for the checks in the log, where the grain has already started to naturally separate. Don't use an axe on anything bigger than 8 inches, use a maul or a wedge. If your axe becomes stuck in a log, turn it over and swing the combined axe/log down onto your stump, axehead first to get more penetration. (Does not work with double bladed axes...) Plan the arc of your swing to end at the top of your stump, not the top of your target log. (You were planning to split the log completely on half, right?) On really large diameter rounds (24 inches and up) don't start in the middle; split small pies out of the edges and work your way in. Avoid sweet gum, the grain is too twisted to split. Poplar is a very straight grained wood and flies apart when threatened with an axe. Oak makes the best firewood. Frozen wood is brittle and splits more easily. When chipping out notches or felling, start your notch at least as wide as the log diameter; angle your slices in at 45 degrees; and twist the embedded axe to flip out the plate sized chips. Don't waste your energy swinging directly into a log at 90 degrees. The wood fibers compress onto the blade and hinder penetration. Angling in at 45 degrees allows the wood fiber to expand out of the cut away from the blade, and results in a deeper cut. (A straight line is not the easiest distance through a log) A sharp axe cuts twice as deep as a dull hammer, and makes your work easier. Cutting on the ground results in rock gouges on your blade and turns a sharp axe into hammer. Section logs 24 inches on straight grain pieces; cut as close to major branches as possible to make splitting easier on gnarly grains. When using a crosscut saw, always PULL; never push. Work on your rhythm with you partner.
  5. 2 points
    This is easily lost on even the best of us ... MB completion is the scout's responsibility. If the scout does not produce a blue card with a counselors signature on the "completion" line, he did not earn the badge. If the counselor did not remember that a scout demonstrated a skill and therefore did not record it the application, the scout did not demonstrate the skill. In both circumstances it is the scout's responsibility to ensure that his portion of the properly signed blue card is in his hands -- not on any SMs list. If he chooses to leave camp without that card, then his priority is on getting home and he is leaving his progress in the hands of someone else. If the scout missed doing a requirement, he needs to let his SM know that he needs a counselor near home. If the counselor missed something, he needs to touch base with him/her before he leaves camp. Insisting that things be done this way regardless of the camp's ad-hoc tracking system puts the scout in control of his destiny. The scout makes sure that everything is properly signed, and when the application is complete, divides it for the appropriate parties, and secures his portion in case the counselor's and the unit's record-keeping fails him. It's scout's advancement -- not the parent's, or the SM's, or the counselor's.
  6. 2 points
    Boy Scout Drum and Bugle Corps used to be a thing as well, see Madison Scouts.
  7. 2 points
    Better than no feedback, but no....not great. The problem is that the report goes to the scoutmaster, who has 20 or 30 scouts in his care. He scans through the report, and hopefully, big problems like a scout only getting one requirement signed off, will jump out at him so he can raise a question. But there's a lot of socuts in a unit....and most of 'em are trying to earn 4 or more badges during the week....so there will still be problems that fall through the cracks. As TAHAWK says, in many camps, the "counselors" are actually scouts and the camp or council just "cheat" by pretending that a counselor back in the city is "supervising" the camp merit badge classes. Of course they aren't, which is why camps really need to get rid of all the BAD quality classes in their program. One camp my son's troop went to boasted they offered "over 60 merit badges". Sad...they would be a better camp if they would just do 20 outdoor-focused badges really WELL.
  8. 2 points
  9. 2 points
    I think this is problem a semantic point, but... respect - n. 1.a feeling of deep admiration for someone or something elicited by their abilities, qualities, or achievements. 2. due regard for the feelings, wishes, rights, or traditions of others. respect - v. admire (someone or something) deeply, as a result of their abilities, qualities, or achievements. I think we need to show respect for their program (as in noun definition #2 above). We need to exhibit due regard for their feelings, wishes, rights, and traditions. I do not think we need to show respect their program (as in noun definition #1 or the verb definition above. If you don't agree with their program, I think you don't need to pretend you admire it. We're all mature enough here to have an open dialog on the merits of their program.
  10. 2 points
    My Troop did this for several years - it can be very profitable. Naturally, adults did the chain saw work. Scouts loaded the logs into the trucks and unloaded at home. Adults ran the splitter but Scouts moved the logs to/from. When someone would email/voicemail to request a delivery, Scouts would call back to schedule. Scouts would load the truck and ride along to unload and stack at the customer house. Interesting that the Scouts never minded the physical labor of loading/splitting/delivering the wood. We stopped doing it because we couldnt get a Scout who would make the phone calls to schedule the deliveries ! Our camp also sells firewood. It is collected from around camp as part of the timber / conservation plan. There is always a crew on the log splitter at OA / Camp Work Day.
  11. 2 points
    In my times at camp, we would get a report on the evening of the night before the last day at camp and they had the counselors available to discuss what is in the report. If we had any questions, we could talk with them about discrepancies. Not a great solution, but it helped. I would have preferred to see it daily so I could talk to the scouts throughout the week.
  12. 1 point
    I heard that Rainbow Council is thinking about rolling out a program that combines soccer with scouting in the same unit. Instead of scout uniforms, kids wear soccer uniforms. Instead of learning first aid, they learn to roll around on the ground moaning like prima donas. Here's the story: https://patch.com/illinois/homerglen-lockport/new-boy-scout-program-will-combine-soccer-scouting Since Rainbow Council is clearly on the cutting edge of combinatorial youth activities, here are some more ideas for them: Combine karate classes with scouting: kids don't need to chop wood to build fires, they can karate chop those logs! And if woods tools really ARE called for, they can always use a samurai sword in place of a hatchet (but only if the scout has a Totn Chip). Combine scouting with marching bands. A bugler playing taps is sooooo "OK Boomer"....let's have 50 kids play reveille with booming bass drums and a few slide trombones! Modern parents like to make up sorry excuses for not going outdoors, pretending that it's the kids who want to stay inside. So let's combine scouting with therapy sessions! Yeah! We'll sit around in a circle, holding hands, spouting all kinds of PC BS about feelings and our own personal self worth while doing absolutely nothing of any value to anybody in society. Then we'll have a big group hug instead of a flag ceremony. What fun!
  13. 1 point
  14. 1 point
  15. 1 point
    Our resident atheist , of the non-religious variety, has not been here lately. He takes care of deriding all religious beliefs with a vengeance.
  16. 1 point
    Yes. I'm a firm believer in learning to enjoy doing things badly. Like my dad used to tell me, "Son, if it's worth doing, it's worth having to do over again."
  17. 1 point
    Some STEM is okay....but it needs to avoid conflicts with the core outdoor program. Nothing wrong with a kid being interested in science and going for a Chemistry merit badge and a NOVA award... Things go wonky when you take it too far. Like BSA did with the stupid "STEM Scout" program. (Or like *MANY* organizations do by watering down their STEM focus by stacking art on top of it and making it "STEAM" --- talk about a sure-fire way to guarantee that your program will be a failure!)
  18. 1 point
    IMHO, the NCAC practice you describe is an excellent demonstration of PITIFUL servant leadership. If the scouters in Council were GOOD leaders, they'd be checking "downstream" --- looking at the blue cards or electronic advancement records *WHEN THE SCOUT EARNS AN AWARD AND THE TROOP BUYS THE BADGE FOR HIM*. That way the scout has an opportunity to correct himself, and the troop can discover their sloppy advancement processes in time to nip future problems in the bud so they don't end up with a years-long procession of non-compliant sign-offs. Waiting until an Eagle BOR to verify that the person signing a blue card is actually a registered MBC is simply unacceptable. Sad.
  19. 1 point
    The problem with the Soccer and Scouting idea, in my view, is the notion that you can make Scouting more appealing by watering it down and making it look like something it isn't. I'd put STEM Scouting in that same category. Soccer is great, and maybe BSA should get into the soccer business, but don't call it Scouting. STEM is great, and BSA has gotten into the STEM business, but don't call it Scouting.
  20. 1 point
    Interesting you mention karate. Some of my parents recently took their Girl Scout Troop to an Martial Arts gym for an outing. They loved it. Exercise, good lessons in bullying, when to fightback, etc. When the parents suggested it to the Cub Pack we had to decline because it was on the no-no-way-too-dangerous-we-don't-want-our-scouts-to-learn-fighting-skills-o-m-g-what-are-you-thinking-list!
  21. 1 point
    A couple of comments. The video shows the use of a splitting maul. Few scouts learning to use an axe can even control a full sized axe, much less a maul. There are different sizes of axes. The sizes are 1/4, 1/2, 3/4, and full. A 1/4 axe is a hatchet. A 3/4 axe is often sold as a "boy's axe" and is really good for younger scouts. I have a half axe (be careful how you say it) that I really like because I can hold it with one hand and, with a sharp blade, can split most of the wood I deal with. I didn't watch the whole video but something I noticed is that the guy is standing with his feet together. If he misses the wood with the axe then the blade will come down to where his feet are. That's a big no no. Keep your feet apart. The big stump really helps. When the axe hits the wood it should be traveling straight down. A tall stump helps or else the person has to bring their hands down to be even with the top of the wood. I didn't see any discussion on starting the swing. Especially for scouts, start with the main hand at the end of the handle and the other near the head. As the swing moves toward the wood the hand near the head slides down toward the end of the handle. Most people new to this stand too close to the wood, resulting in overshooting the wood and smacking the handle against the wood. This guy is splitting logs so that won't happen much, but when cutting the wood further down to make a fire, one needs a good aim. There there's all the safety issues. Axe yard. No branches to get caught on. The head is on tight. Assume the head will fly off (been there, done that). Also, learning how to really sharpen an axe. I use a fine, single cut file. I never see them at the big box hardware stores but I can get them online. Files are like sand paper, they come in different grits. Fine, single cut leaves the smoothest finish. Bastard double cut is the coarsest and likely not needed unless the axe is really chewed up. Once you get used to it, cutting wood is better than mediation. It takes a lot of power and also good control. The focus required will wash away any other issues you have.
  22. 1 point
    There might be ways to get partials done on those anyway. Our local council has a "Shooting Sports Fulfillment Weekend" where they open up the ranges at a nearby camp and provide certified instructors to help the boys --- any scout from any unit is welcome to come. The council also provides NRA and USA Archery instructor training periodically for adult scouters. We have several adults in our troop who have taken those classes and are now registered as MBCs. They provide qualified instruction for the troop as a group, but also work with individual scouts to complete merit badge requirements. The troop regularly has a "Shooting" campout at a council-run camp where we either use our own trained scouters, or arrange with council to have an RSO provided to us. Your troop might be able to do that too...depends on your council. ...and of course, the scout can ask the Scoutmaster or use Scoutbook to find a local counselor willing to work with him individually (the classic method of earning merit badges) Our scouts thus have multiple avenues open to them to finish any shooting sports merit badges. Check with your local council ---- I would not be surprised if there are more opportunities in your area than you might realize.
  23. 1 point
    Something has to fill the vacuum since Risk Management removed dodgeball from the program! By the way, the next time someone tosses out "OK, Boomer", just reply "That'll be Civil Rights Generation to you, post-modern nomad."
  24. 1 point
    What? Your camp generates more wood than scouts can burn? [confused] Our local Scout Network (aged 18-25) help a local farmer who is very scout friendly to down and log a few trees a couple of times a year, and the local pub that has an open wood fire buys the logs from them. Not a massive money spinner, but an honest days work.
  25. 1 point
    I don't see where anyone is singling out the Mormon faith. In fact, the opposite seems true. For decades, Scouting worked to accommodate the wishes of the LDS church, to the point where BSA allowed a customized program within a program. I personally was never comfortable with that as I think Scouting should generally work in any faith environment or in any interfaith mix. Any minor accommodations should perhaps be more appropriately limited to the CO and unit level. I also personally had an issue with the gender disparities in the LDS church, as I do when they occur in any religion from Christianity to Judaism to Islam. If BSA had built a customized program for hundreds of thousands of Catholics, Jews or Muslims and then they decided to part company, I think we'd be having the same kinds of discussions. It has nothing specific to do with LDS. Scouting has been nothing but a good friend to the LDS church. Your proviso to part without rancor perhaps would be better pointed at LDS leadership, not BSA. As far as I can see, Scouters are sad to see these kids exiting the program and I hope it's clear that they will always be welcomed back should they decide they and their families miss Scouting.
  26. 1 point
    In the last two paragraphs, you both seem to agree whatever it is that you are arguing about should not be in a Scouting forum? Common ground! So...do you really want a Moderator to step in and tell you to stop or can the civil discussion mentioned in the OP proceed? @desertrat77 @MattR @John-in-KC
  27. 1 point
    This is also what I have seen at summer camps. Usually Thursday afternoon / evening they make the reports or blue cards available, and the Scouts have Thursday night / Friday to finish stuff up or discuss with MBCs anything that was marked incorrectly. As for partials, depending on the merit badge, the Scout might be able to finish the requirements at home, but would still need to find a registered MBC for the merit badge in question in order to get the final approvals.
  28. 1 point
    Why is it demeaning and derogatory to ask the question? This strikes me as a question worth some objective discussion. "A group (LDS church) creates different roles for men & women. The group has a very visible role (Priesthood) which is limited only to men. The group highlights traditional roles for women (family focus) and underscores that they are equally as important. This is a model that is different from what we generally see today in society where there is tremendous momentum to create equal opportunities for women." A follow up question would be "the group in question is a religious one. Does the fact that these choices are rooted in theological teachings impact your opinion." I know I've been a bit tougher in my responses here - but I just don't agree that we shouldn't be able to form opinions or discuss the topic because the ones making the choice are a religion. I respect the right of the religion to make whatever choices it wants to - but it doesn't mean it's unscoutlike to discuss the topic. I would go a bit further that it is very appropriate to teach Scouts how to have a civil, issues based discussion on the merits of an idea. I believe this is an entirely appropriate part of understanding citizenship in our country - a country which is based on the free exchange of ideas. To me this seems like a great thought question for scouts to ponder.
  29. 1 point
    Three to six camp outs per year and one long-term camping trip -- there was a second video released last Sunday with further details: https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/broadcasts/face-to-face/?lang=eng&cid=email-OCA_CYD_111719_CTABroadcast @swilliams You might find some satisfaction at the 34:50 mark.
  30. 1 point
    You mistakenly conflate the methods by which one learns as the same things as the topic being taught. Yes, people (let's acknowledge that not all boys or girls learn in the same way) have different methods by which they assimilate knowledge but none of that should have any bearing whether or not a person, should be taught how to tie a bowline knot or how to use a compass properly. BSA teaches life skills, not boy skills.
  31. 1 point
    I respect your passion on this, but we're never going to get anywhere in building Scouting back up again if all we do is simply bemoan what once was. I think the biggest thing that impacts our outdoor program is the fact that we're a few generations away from a time when most adults served in the military. I'm not sure what council you're in, but I'm in a pretty big one. There's no-one on our council training committee or any of our program committees that got there through a big check. They are all experienced Scouters who showed an interest and networked enough to be asked. The Council Board - sure, those guys are there because of money. But, our council board is way more about raising money for the program than it is about anything to do with the program itself. So, instead of talking about whether Wood Badge should use the "old school" approach or whether council boards should be composed of "grey beard" scouters, I would encourage us to focus on specific, measurable things we can do as volunteers.
  • Create New...