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Showing content with the highest reputation on 05/26/18 in all areas

  1. 2 points
    I'm a CC and I think the Committee needs to take a step back here. A large part of Scouting is providing an environment where Scouts can learn and grow. You've got a young scout who made a mistake. Let the scout and the SM deal with it and move on. The point here is to coach the scout, help him to see his error, and then figure out how to move forward.
  2. 1 point
    I've been gathering leather tools for use in Scout and youth groups over the last few years. I just got access to the leather tools that our council has for the Cub Scout Day Camps and for use by Leatherworking Merit Badge Counselors for classes. They have 4 bins of tools. Each is supposed to have enough for 20 scouts. The idea being that the bins could be checked out for district events and merit badge events. When I helped out with the merit badge at our "Mega Expo" the bin contained 20 mallets, 3 of which were broken, 26 stamping boards, a rack containing 12 handle stamps, and about 15 3d stamps. There were 6 alphabet sets, but only 1 was complete. I went to the Scout office and got access to all the tools and found that over the years, multiple sets were checked out for a single event and when put away no effort was made to make sure the alphabet sets were organized back into complete sets. In fact, the sizes were even mixed up with 3d stamps thrown in for good measure. Fast forward a couple years and you get the situation I was just in. I sat there most of the day and sorted and organized the tools. Now in total there should be enough tools for 80 scouts to work with. As it turned out, there are only 68 mallets, 26 I need to repair, less than 50 3d stamps and less that 2 racks of misc handle stamps. And a bunch of those are damaged and will be thrown away. So I went to my stash of leather tools and put together the following: Using 34 of the 3d stamps they already had, I added 206 additional stamps to make up 4 sets of 60 3d stamps for each bin. Each set has the same stamps to make re-sorting easier in the future. I also put together 4 sets of 27 handle stamps, each set the same, for the bins also. I had 30 handles for the 3d stamps that I included along with some extra racks and misc letters and numbers to complete their sets. I still need to find additional mallets along with purchasing 6 each of 3/8" and 1/4" alphabet/number sets and they should be set. Here is the pile of tools I sorted through:
  3. 1 point
    Fear is probably the closer emotion. My scenario is 80% membership loss and FOS loss drives consolidation. Which drives cost cuts which drives service reductions. Community units get less attention. Their favorite camps get sold. Attitudes wane. The LDS subsidized scouting from AS to ID. I don't see a replacement. IDK what the critical mass is but it's not clear to me that any council easily survives even a 10 or 15% immediate membership drop. Beyond that I think conservatives in the vast red middle of the country will check out. Not immediately but in a couple years. The old guard will slowly retire which isnt a bad thing neccessarily but i have limited confidence a new guard will arise. I was SM for a rural troop. My boys found the BSA restrictions on rifle ranges, ATVs, laser tag et. al. absurd. They already did all those things with their dad or uncle or on their own or with a church youth group. How am I supposed to explain to a kid whose been farming for 4 years he can't drive a tractor at a conclave or run a log splitter because he's only 17 and untrained? I expect more of these kinds of things moving forward and decreased relevance for BSA, especially if they start down the ISP trail. The tipping poi t for boys will be way lower than for scouters.
  4. 1 point
    I still have yet to hear of any change in program or requirements, ranks, badges, activities, etc., so as far as I can see, things still look pretty much the same. I don't think that a girl in BSA uniform makes the BSA unrecognizable.
  5. 1 point
    By gad, sir, you are a wonder. Every so often, somebody sees a problem and actually solves it. My Scout Hat off to you . Many Scout Leaders will be grateful, but they may not even know for what. But you will know. Some years ago, I was an active Archery Range Safety Officer for CSDC. We held camp in the same locale many years, and others did too. I taught my Scout Assistants to "Walk The Range", in both directions, to retrieve arrows and check conditions. I mention this to set the stage for my story. One year, as we set things up, I opened up the supplies that Council had provided. We anticipated 25 or so Cubs each rotation, set up 12 targets. Officially, the list showed we had 60 arrows, 30 bows of various sizes, and some replacement strings and "stuff". We went thru the arrows: 15 were defective, bad fledging, no point, loose nocks, splintered shafts. We actually counted 48 "good" arrows, actual. The bows we fixed. Targets were set up. Council said they would "try" to get us some more arrows, which they did. Some... We opened camp with (counted twice) 52 good arrows. Broke some, repaired some, but the end of the story is, by closely "Walking the Range", we closed camp and returned to Council 78 arrows! We had found and pulled out of the grass, more than 20 usable arrows , that no one in the previous years had found ! And we returned all the defects, some of which, I was told , were repaired for the Council Scout camp . "The Work Is Done By Whoever Shows Up."
  6. 1 point
    While it might be nice for the DE to do a little more proactive outreach, this sounds about right. The DE is a district level player. If you guys are not involved at the district level and just focus internally - then why would he interact with you?
  7. 1 point
    DE and DD come and go. Boots on the ground is what makes the program go.
  8. 1 point
    Neither do I. I work for the Chartered Organization, not the scout execs.
  9. 1 point
    By the way, I don’t worry about what a DE or DD thinks.
  10. 1 point
    I think that that is a great analogy... also, put the shoe on the other foot. Would we want other hosts to be able to push their values and religious mores on our scouts at a World Jamboree? Put another way, how would people here feel about the host nation's religious views if the event were say, joinly hosted by Yemen, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE, and they prohibited female Scouters and Jewish Scouts from attending?
  11. 1 point
    Can we at least be fair in how we discuss this? the BSA is not "offering these items to our scouts," and not "going to be handing out these items." Condoms are made available, upon request, probably at the health center. The way this is talked about here by some folks you would almost think there will be a guy in a condom costume flinging handfuls of rubbers into the crowd. As for the religious implications, not all religions prohibit the use of condoms, and some don't prohibit pre-marital sex. So even if you were allowed by the BSA to discuss sex with Scouts, I'm not sure it would be appropriate to discuss the religious implications even under those conditions. For the purposes of informing scouts about the risk to their BSA membership by engaging in any sexual activity at a scouting venue, maybe you can find someone in your organization that is not religiously bound to refrain from dropping the hint to scouts that if they find themselves needing to use the condoms available at Jambo that the might also find themselves not in the BSA anymore. They don't have to go into detail, just make it known that there is a policy, and don't break it.
  12. 1 point
    Making items available to deal with a situation that you know is going to occur, does not amount to endorsing, condoning or allowing sexual activity at Scouting events. Maybe the condoms they hand out should have wrappers that say, "Don't use this until you get home, and (assuming you are of the proper age) get married, and even then, only if the precepts of your religion permit." Then everybody's conscience can be clear.
  13. 1 point
    17 years of working in government here quickly killed off any thoughts of conspiracy in the corridors of power. I suspect the same is true of many other large organisations
  14. 1 point
    This statement makes no sense. You acknowledge immediately that "this is not new", but then go on to imply that this is part of some planned destruction of the BSA by people now in top leadership positions. Many (if not all) of those leaders would have nothing to do with condom availability at a World Jambo because those top leaders probably didn't have those positions anyway when condoms were first made available at a World Jambo all those years ago. If anything, this seems like a well-timed article aimed at taking advantage of other national BSA news to attack the reputation of the organization and exploit current opposition to the various membership policy changes.
  15. 1 point
    My breaking point happened 10+ years ago when My wife, who volunteered on our crew's committee, came home from a youth protection class where a fellow student tossed out the, "I thought we had Girl Scouts for girls." One scouter told me I was wrecking the program (promoting venturing) when in fact I was giving our boys more hiking/camping hours. Adults blew smoke over local adult-contrived boundaries that youth rightly found to bIe stupid Yet on each adventure, in a dozen different ways each time, I reaped youths' smiles. I broke. I did. I broke in favor of as many youth in the field under my guidance ... with or without BSA. Today, very close friends lost their son (and Son #2 lost a buddy) in a bicycle-meet-car accident. I've been on the verge of tears all day. I regret not having more hikes with this young man, not encouraging his dad to let him try our crew (in spite of his issues ... he had a few), not doing more to be his mentor. Compared to that loss, BSA's organizational blips mere trifles. So, my organization is bending and flexing to get me and other adults with integrity in touch with more youth? That's not a breaking point. That's a building point.
  16. 1 point
    For me it is all about the unit level. Always has been . It matters not to me what extra membership requirements some other unit uses to allow or disallow scouts or scouters from their rolls. If some other troop somewhere is a girl troop, it doesn't affect my troop. Just because the neighboring troop doesnt use the patrol method at all, and is basically an adult run activity center, it doesnr affect my troop. Just like we tell families and scouts, find the troop that you fit with. If it is no longer your current unit, find a different one.
  17. 1 point
    Every camping trip, service project, field trip, round table, and event.
  18. 1 point
    Who told the scout to meet with the ASM? Was the scout given the option of meeting and consulting with someone else for expert advice?
  19. 1 point
    That is exactly what we do. During my stint as SM, we had two or three BOR leaders who recruited parents standing around, including new parents. The scouts have to request a BOR by signing up on a BOR request sheet. We always try to do the review the same day they sign up, which requires building a board with those standing around at that moment. The leaders give the volunteers a list of basic questions to help them get involved. Typically the leader starts with a few questions to set a tone for the BOR and to keep the question appropriate. As you said, it is a great way for parents to get involved. Barry
  20. 1 point
    Alas, poor GBB! I knew him,Stosh -- a fellow of infinite leadership, of most excellent woodskills He hath bore a pack on his back a thousand times, and now how adored in my imagination it is! My reverence rises at it. Here taught those skills that I have practiced I know now how oft. Where be your gibes now, your gambols, your songs, your flashes of merriment that were wont to set Irving on a roar? Not one now to mock your own grinning? Quite membership-fallen?
  21. 1 point
    "To be or not to be , an Eagle, that is the question. Whether tis nobler to suffer the slings and arrows of hiking, camping, cooking out doors, mosquitos, blisters, broken GPS units or to join a boy led Troop and by ignoring the adults have fun. To Scout, perchance be a Patrol Leader, ah, there's the rub.... for in that chance to plan and learn cooperation and citizenship must give us pause. For to bear the whips and scorn of those who would value the souvenir more than the journey, pity that man. Soft you now, the fair Ophelia doth now join my Troop...." ((Tongue hereby removed from cheek))
  22. 1 point
    Then there is the story of the Arts and Hobbies Crew that specialized in Chess Tournaments, they placed First, Second and Third once. The tournament had been held in a Hotel and the Crew members were boisterously recounting each game in the Lobby until the concierge threw them out. Seems the Hotel had a strict policy against Chest nuts boasting in an open Foyer(This message has been edited by OldGreyEagle)
  23. 1 point
    here's two: Team Work The loaded van pulled in to the only remaining campsite. Eight *Scouts* leaped from the vehicle and began feverishly unloading gear and setting up the tents. Some of the boys rushed to gather firewood, while the others set up the camp stove and cooking utensils. A nearby camper marveled to the Scoutmaster, "That, sir, is some display of teamwork!" The Scoutmaster replied, "I have a system; no one goes to the bathroom until the camp is set up." Tate Compass Co. There was once a couple named Nancy & Mike Tate, and it was their life' s dream to have a compass company. They finally saved enough money and started the Tate's Compass Company. Luck was with them, for the first contract they acquired was to manufacture 750,000 compasses for the Boy Scouts. Nancy and Mike worked feverishly day and night to meet their deadline, & finished just before the Boy Scout Jamboree was to begin. On the day of the Scout Wilderness hike, each boy scout was given a Tate's Compass to help them find their way. Unfortunately, it was discovered too late that every single compass was made with the colored point of the needle facing the wrong way,so when one was facing North, the needle pointed to the South. Needless to say, all of the boy scouts got lost & it was the biggest fiasco known in Boy Scout history. The Tate's compass company went out of business, but from this experience came the familiar adage... "He who has a Tate's is lost." (Say it out loud).
  24. 1 point
    Thats assuming any of them will admit to seeing Mary Poppins in the first place. A more scouting related story Two Eskimos sitting in a their boat were chilly, but when they lit a fire in the craft it sank-proving once and for all that you can't have your kayak and heat it, too.
  25. 1 point
    I've been working on this one on my own, and wanted to run it by some folks before I tried it in public. As we circle up, the SM asks "What is the opposite of black?" Any scout answers "White". SM: "And what is in between black and white?" Any Scout: "Gray". SM: "And what is the opposite of Liberal?" A.S.: "Conservative." SM: "And in between Liberal and Conservative?" A.S.: "Moderate." SM: "How about the opposite of Hot?" A.S.: "Cold." SM: "And in the middle of Hot and Cold?" A.S.: "Warm." SM: "So, as you can see, nature and humanity has created a compromise for many common things in our lives. Now, one more try. What is the opposite of Right?" A.S.: "Wrong." SM: "And what is the word that describes a compromise between Right and Wrong?" After a few minutes of either no answer of awkward guesses, the SM can finish with something like: "There is nothing in between right and wrong. We've never created a word for that. There are shades of gray. There is too hot and too cold, and we have warm to satisfy the need to avoid the extremes. But there is only right and wrong. There is no middle. Do what is right, because not doing what is right by definition means you are doing wrong. Goodnight Scouts!" Let me know if these needs further polishing. Thanks! Mark