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Showing content with the highest reputation on 03/04/20 in Posts

  1. 5 points
    One of my biggest beliefs is that BSA has the opportunity to be in the real forefront of the environmental surge. We should be doing all we can to encourage varieties of clean energy, solar and wind particularly, and water in a few areas. We should be demonstrating in all the camps conservation methods to best use the various habitats and geographical elements. We should be putting the Stem stuff in, and modifying it with new technology, even as we encourage hands on nature study with the new resources, and where able, throwbacks to older methods such as pressing and field observations. But a nature hike today should include possibly taking photos with phones and then developing ids through online resources and actual physical guides. Camps should have small solar lights for safety and easy location of kybos at night. ATT, since we had that guy that led them as National President, might use camps to put in cell towers on tall buildings such as climbing walls, or even trees. We should become the new green wave with composting and maybe even solar toilets in the camps. Raise worms; raise Christmas trees where possible; find beekeepers to put hives on the sites; build bird and bat houses and distribute them around the camps. Push any and all conservation techniques and teach the youth about them while making the camps a little more self-sustaining. I suspect that a few camps could even become local vegetable growers. Bring the best challenges from the first decades, ones that make sense still, and find ways to incorporate them with new technologies and cooperative efforts with colleges and environmental groups. Focus on that thing called service and being prepared, but make it fit the 21st century when we can, but still teach the best from the past.
  2. 3 points
    It's the Outdoors mission for me. Outdoors is neutral territory no matter what your politics. There is a huge groundswell of interest among young kids today in the environment, but a lot of them don't know the first thing about it or have access to it. Why are we not capitalizing on this? Our program -- the ranks and the merit badges -- need an overhaul to get rid of the school and homework type drivel and to emphasize more outdoors related activities. There is so much that scouting does not get into or go very deep with, from wildlife biology to weather to water resources. People mock STEM scouts but there is a lot of STEM programming that can be done in the context of the out of doors.
  3. 3 points
    Why? Let's not confuse 2 deep with no one-on-one. 1 adult can be with multiple Scouts at a given time.
  4. 2 points
    Well, that is not what was meant. True, no one HAS to follow BSA training guidelines outside of the world of BSA . The Scouting Rules may not have any BSA consequence outside of Scouting, but they can still help guide one's actions . What was it the philosopher said, common sense ain't so common? Protecting one's reputation and safety is a good thing no matter where one is. This is why most schools and offices and sunday school buildings now have windows in the doors (think back. Did your class room have a window in the door? ) and ask that the teachers not be alone with students or office mates. Not make sense? Not practical? As a Sub Teacher, I had to continually ask myself what the possible ramifications of my actions might be. What I said to a student and when and where I said it. I was once saved from a serious accusation by having more than one student at the scene. Why? because BSA YPT made me think about not being ONLY one on one. Safe Swim Defense? How does that not lend itself to good pool management? If you think about it, the history that is learned HOPEFULLY becomes enshrined in better practice. BSA YP when I joined as an adult was already being improved and had become a model for many other youth programs, church insurance programs and such. Not practical? Seat belts in cars were once thought to be "not practical". But they do save lives and so are now required. Doesn't make sense? The Titanic did not have enough life boats because "it didn't make sense". The Titanic was designed unsinkable and if there was a problem, the boats would be used to ferry folks to the (certainly)close by recue ships. Things are only "impractical" and "don't make sense" to folks that never have any problems with the rest of the world. When I was a Scout, I learned the Chest Pressure Arm Lift technique of Artificial Respiration. Even then, the USArmy was experimenting with mouth to mouth CPR. Since those days, I have learned no fewer than 4 distinct methods and each has been an improvement on the previous. The CPR method and rhythm I now know has only been needed once in 50 years. I was glad I knew it. I used it OUTSIDE of BSA. David CO, you are right to question the need for using YPT outside of BSA, but you might reconsider the comparison of life in BSA vs outside. Which might be "safer" now, with our newer training requirements? Which could benefit from the other? See you on the trail.....
  5. 2 points
    There will always be people that hate you if you're different. Blaming the culture war on our problems won't help solve them. It's the hand we've been dealt. Making a funner (sorry, that word is most appropriate) program will help. Getting a consistent message about how that fun is used to develop our youth will help. I mean marketing and training.
  6. 2 points
    I'm tracking re wearing. I haven't worn service stars since the Carter Administration. As far as significance, I believe service stars have their place. One example is @The Latin Scot's situation. Though I respect the differing opinions, I think he should wear the star, red background. Another would be the adult who was a scout for 3 or 4 years. Made it to First Class. Earned a few merit badges. He was active in his troop, went to summer camp, 50 milers, was a patrol leader, etc. Though he didn't make Eagle (and that's okay) he was a good scout, and his experiences made a lasting, positive impression. So that little service star with the green background, pinned above his pocket, may not mean much to anyone else. But it will be special to him.
  7. 2 points
    (Emphasis added.) (Emphasis added.) Great posts that go to the heart of BSA's current problems, and how to fix them. BSA, thinking it was a moral beacon for America, took a side in the culture war and was constantly attacked because of it for more than twenty years. When BSA finally surrendered, it had lost credibility with all sides. Regardless of how you feel about the war, BSA lost because it lost its identity and lost its standing as an American icon that could appeal to everyone. As former CSE Bob Mazzuca said, "For the first time in our history, we had adversaries. Back in the day when I started, it was motherhood, apple pie and Boy Scouts." How do you bring people back to Scouting -- and along the way re-earn Scouting a place in American society? (1) Go back to what the program is really about: "The purposes of the corporation are to promote, through organization, and cooperation with other agencies, the ability of boys to do things for themselves and others, to train them in scoutcraft, and to teach them patriotism, courage, self-reliance, and kindred virtues, using the methods that were in common use by boy scouts on June 15, 1916." BSA Congressional Charter, U.S. Code Title 36 Sec. 30902. As @ParkMan says, "Scouting is a fun activity for kids that gives them new experiences and adventures. Along the way the kid learns some self reliance and independence." (2) Win people back Cub Scout pack by Cub Scout pack and ScoutsBSA troop by ScoutsBSA troop: "I've heard several parents remark that they never thought their child would enjoy Scouting, but then for some reason or another took a chance and learned more about our pack & troop. As a result, we've had great membership success."
  8. 1 point
    Yes. As long as that leader is not the only one present at the camp out, he/she is fine. We had a situation last summer with a unit whose second registered leader cancelled as they were on the way to pick him up to go to an out of state summer camp. That remaining leader had a choice of cancelling the trip without notice (NO REFUND POLICY at the camp we attended), or going ahead and driving all day, knowing that they were sharing a campsite with another troop (us). They were within YPT guidelines in the car, as there was no one on one contact, 1 adult and 4 scouts. We had 4 adults with us for the week, so there was technically no violation at camp (YPT does not state that the second registered leader be from your unit, just be registered and present at the activity). They made sure that there were no times that he was alone in the campsite with just one scout, there was always at least one of us present with him. Not the ideal situation, but considering the circumstances, it was a workable one.
  9. 1 point
    This has been asked before, and the answer is yes.
  10. 1 point
    This year marks the 91st anniversary of the flash flood that drowned eight members of Boy Scout Troop No. 45 (including their scoutmaster) while they were on a camping trip along the banks of White Creek in northern Rhea County, Tennessee. This location, for two years previously, had been the site of the truncated Cumberland Boy Scout Council’s summer camp facilities. However in the handful of weeks prior to this calamity, the Cumberland Council had formally dissolved its organization and the executive had resigned his position....read how the tragic event unfolded here.
  11. 1 point
    Good stuff. I believe that the (1) Scouting program (2) as delivered by local units is how we recover from the bankruptcy and rebuild membership. I think we could really help ourselves in recruiting if we could do some trimming and tucking in the program, using the ScoutsBSA advancement requirements as the starting place. We need to be able to explain in 15 seconds what ScoutBSA members DO, what Cub Scouts DO. So I'd suggest the program consist of no more than four "core" areas -- or rather, Service plus three subject-matter areas, for example: Outdoor Adventure Environment and Nature Emergency Response Service and Citizenship
  12. 1 point
    Great ideas. Some of the scout camps here in New England have Clivus composting toilets . Treasure Valley has a large solar array and has or had a sustainability project with WPI.
  13. 1 point
    Skeptic, I heartily agree. Just had someone contact me to day to buy bluebird boxes from scouts because they assumed we sold them as a fundraiser. We don't. Why aren't we doing that, and becoming known for that, instead of ... rip off popcorn that has nothing to do with any scout value, oath, or law?
  14. 1 point
    That might work at the unit level, but a conservative parent doesn't get a choice between a conservative or liberal council.
  15. 1 point
    It will be interesting to watch. Both my sons in their 30s have made some comments lately without any input from me that scouting as they knew is gone. They don't really know what it is now, but admitting girls was the final straw. I wouldn't call them conservative, political or even cultural. They see the change as radical and if they are going that far, what else have they changed. I can't disagree, not because of just the girls, but also because changes intended to protect the scouts. The differences between my dads program in WWII and mine in the early 70s was hardly noticeable. In fact, I wore much of my dads uniform. The only real noticeable difference in program from the early 70's and my sons experience in the 90s was the addition of women leaders, and the short shorts men wore (glad that's over). But the difference my grand kids will see in 10 years compared to their dads experience is already significant. And if many here have their way, the uniforms will look something similar to only tie dye neckerchiefs. Self-reliance and Independence? Well, I guess that's subjective. Self-reliance is a direct response to independence, and I believe independence is being whittled away in different forms. Instead, scouting will have to become the FUN program of group adventures with a tinge of independence, so long as two adults are near by. I'm not being skeptical, I'm being realistic. I've been doing this long enough that I have seen how small program changes start a chain of culture ideals. I don't see Self-reliance and independence as the realistic objectives because the basis for those goals is independent decision making. And I don't believe adults today trust youth enough to give that kind of independence. I'm not even sure the changing rules and policies will give the scouts enough room for that independence. I think Fun Group Adventure is the scouting motto of the future. Barry
  16. 1 point
    Good Lord this is the most confused element. They are vastly different and wholly unrelated, other than both should be observed. One leader of another unit at camp was concerned about how they could have Scouts at various troop activities as it would spread leaders to thin. We talked with them, tried to guide them on 2 deep at the camp, but no one on one. He could not grasp that if one leader went wandering to the camp store with 3 Scouts, that was not in fact one on one. We took his thinking down the rabbit hole and tried to show that using that thinking for a troop of 20 Scouts you would need a vast amount of leaders. I suggested personal autonomous drones for each Scout and a vast network of trail cameras to insure safety, but do not feel that my sarcasm was well received.
  17. 1 point
    They're 13 and 14yo's and capable and competent to do this hike. If we quit Scouting and went to that state park with those same buddies, I would not hesitate to send them on that hike while me and the other dads stayed in camp. When I was that age we got on our bikes and were gone for the afternoon. uhg sorry this makes me frustrated.
  18. 1 point
    We're treading in difficult waters here. It's really tough for me to argue what progressives will or won't do. My belief is that as long as Scouting is identified with promoting particular views, it becomes a target for one political group or another. The BSA promoting anti-progressive (aka conservative) views makes it a target for progressives. The BSA promoting anti-conservative (aka progressive) views makes it a target for conservatives. My point isn't that we should be actively organizing conservative or progressive packs - but that they will develop organically. As people we tend to group into communities of more or less similarly minded people. As a parent looking for a Cub Scout pack, you're going to be able to tell quickly is that pack holds a Sunday service or not. You're going to get a sense for the values of the parents that make up that community - are they more conservative or more progressive? You'll know sitting around the campfire. You'll know by conversations at the troop meeting. As a BSA community, we really ought to play it straight. There's really no reason to associate Scouting with any one political ideology any more. Make it about great adventures with your kids.
  19. 1 point
    "" And will you impersonate Clark Gable? And dance when 'ere you're able? Camporee...… Vexilollogy is a much under appreciated study. We were well pleased by the response of the Scouts visiting our event, before the wind forced us to take down the canopy . Even AFTER we took down the canopy. Among other things, the Patrols were given a choice of folding up a small 6' x4' US flag ("every Scout knows how to fold up the flag, right?") or a LARGE 15' x 24' US flag. On a calm day, this can be a challenge, but with 20-40 mph winds, it was fun to watch. I was chagrined by the number of Patrols who insisted they wanted the challenge of the BIG flag (more points! ) versus the more sure thing of the SMALL flag. Teamwork.... Now if Irving can avoid the bankruptcy.... When my dad was in his last illness, one of the things I did to give him some comfort was to assure him that, yes, he was dying debt free. I went to the County Courthouse, taught myself how to read the land and contract records, and went thru all his dealings. Liens released, taxes paid and receipted, I learned more about my dad's business dealings than even my mom was aware of, but yep, all was clear. And I came to realize how important it had been to my dad for him NOT to declare bankruptcy, but to pay his debts as he had promised. And he had never been a Scout...…..
  20. 1 point
    I came across an excellent web site called 50 Miler that is about 50-percent scout focused and 50-percent general backpacking focused (which, of course, is also relevant to scouts). Many of the blog posts are recent and all (even the "oldies") are of excellent quality --- relevant and accurate. The site isn't about BSA's 50 Miler award, but with it's focus on long distance backpacking treks, it is completely relevant to any scouter thinking about the 50 Miler award... Link: https://50miler.com/
  21. 1 point
    Ok then. More adventure, more advancement... more fun, less arguing. @MattR @desertrat77 @John-in-KC @LeCastor @NJCubScouter
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