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  1. 11 points
    LDS units form a HUGE percentage of Scouting units in the Western region especially. States like Idaho, Arizona and Wyoming, and large portions of California and Oregon have exceptionally large numbers of LDS units. I am sorry to hear you have had those kind of experiences, but in all my time Scouting as both a youth and an adult, and having observed the MASSIVE size and rich dynamics of Scouting in thickly LDS areas like Utah and Idaho, I can say confidently that, in the majority of cases both historically and regionally, LDS units are powerhouses both in membership and advancement. The Utah National Parks Council is the largest in Scouting, and they do amazing things there. It's been pointed out already, but for over 100 years the Church has supported and enriched the Scouting program. Don't count on too much crossing over into non-LDS Troops. The new activity program will inevitably be as involving and fulfilling as Scouting has been for the past century, and there will be a huge, worldwide coordinated effort to implement it entirely without leaving much time for Scouting as well, and besides, this new direction will absolutely deliver the same benefits to our youth as Scouting has in the past, so the need to do both will become a redundancy. Now, I am of course looking at this with eyes looking towards a bright future and a heart filled with optimism. But make no mistake - I am also grieving in a way that I cannot even describe with words yet - not that the Church is leaving Scouting; no, we will be fine and carry on as ever - but I am heartbroken that with all these new changes, the Boy Scouts of America, as conceived by Lord Baden-Powell and nurtured and cultivated by the likes of Beard, Seton, West, and Hillcourt - is dead. It is a new, gender-neutral program which will continue to wither away with each concession to popular opinion. And its most powerful of all beliefs, the idea that boys need a program all their own to help them grow into better citizens, leaders, husbands and fathers, has now been made to look as old-fashioned - if not irrelevant - if not even "inequitable." And it's the boys who lose when the rights to their own program are taken from them to make way for the girls who do not learn as they do, and will by necessity bring with them changes to accomidate their unique natures. The BSA has now made a powerful statement - that girls learn just the same as boys, and so they should get to enjoy the same program, which should be made to teach both genders the same. The Church firmly stands by the belief that boys and girls, and men and women, are inherently different from each other, that gender is an eternal part of our divine nature, and that men and women have different needs and learn in different way in order to best fulfil their roles in the family. The Boy Scouts of America has now effectively moved away from this belief which for over a century it fought to protect, and as such, it no longer aligns with what we believe. It will be a bittersweet separation, to be sure. But the Church's doctrines and principles have never changed, while those of the BSA have. I personally am sorry to no end that these changes have been made, and that the program no longer offers the best options for out youth. But they have taken their stand, and now we have to take ours. Mind you - we have until the end of next year before the change, so you still have another 18 months with me! And unlike some others I know, I don't plan to drop off the face of the Scouting planet. It will always be a part of me, and I will always care about how the program continues, even my time and energies will be needed elsewhere.
  2. 10 points
    1- Stop driving their existing membership away with ridiculous changes to their core principles in order to be 'liked' by a fickle politically correct group of progressives who HATE what the BSA stood for. 2- Do what they say that they are going to do, and stop changing their 'written in stone' positions every six months. 3- Reduce the redundant CYA paperwork and useless training that drives away seasoned volunteers. 4- Push a program that goes back into the woods. BSA needs to compete against digital and social attractions, not try to emulate them. The outdoors and nature were a solid attraction that boys could find only in scouting. The wilderness is still there, waiting.
  3. 9 points
    I am not at all squeamish about BSA having separate units for boys and girls. I just don't believe it is going to happen. Once these linked units are firmly established, BSA will announce that they no longer see any reason for separate units, and they will all be officially merged into co-ed units. BSA is taking an incremental approach to changing over to co-ed scouting. It has no intention to keep the girl units permanently segregated.
  4. 9 points
    You raise some interesting points that I'd like to address from many years running coed scouts in the UK Will girls being around influence how boys behave? Sort of. And by that I mean in a good way! It doesn't stop boys being boys. The noise and the fart jokes and the banter are still there. It does though take the edge of certain things. You made specific reference to taking a pee. I actually think that is a fantastic example. Whether there are girls around or not I think it would be polite if, while on a hike or a camp, when a scout needs a pee they slip behind a tree or some bushes and do it out of site (and of course downhill from camp and well away from any water supply etc) of other people! Having girls around encourages that kind of polite behaviour. Does it stop the horse play? Certainly not. This is one of the videos on our troop youtube channel. I've always loved it. They didn't realise I was filming till the last few seconds. Shows what the kids are really like with the boys and girls mixed up together. They're just a gang, as patrols and troops were always meant to be. We typically have separate boy and girl tents on camp but half the time they end up mixing up when it actually comes to it. Are boys and girls different? Yes of course they are. They have physical differences they hit pubity at different times, there are some character differences. Is there are an argument for having single sex activities? Yes there is and I fully respect many of those arguments. I think it's particularly strong, for examples, in sport. While I don't think there's a moral reason as such for coed scouting I do actually see it as better that way. Why? Scouts is not an end in itself. We are not taking them camping for the sake of learning to camp, fun though it may be. The outdoors, patrols, hiking, community service, they are just the method by which we are preparing young people for life. And life is coed. The last bastions of male only professions have tumbled with only some specific religious leadership roles remaining. Wherever today's scouts end up working, whatever profession or vocation they go into, it will almost certainly be coed. When they go to work they won't be separated, when they go to university they won't be separated. So why separate them now? Learn how to manage or be managed by someone of the opposite sex when they 12 and it becomes less of a problem when they are 22.
  5. 8 points
    IMO, if there is "no gender" in Scouting, USA then the uniform - shirts and pants style should be the same for all.
  6. 8 points
    If this was a different thread, on a different topic, I might tend to agree with some of the statements that I have read here about retention. I cannot agree with them in the context of this thread and this topic. When scouting loses a large number of boys, en masse, because a Chartering Organization pulls out of scouting, it is not the fault of unit scouters. It was not a failure of the unit scouters when a Catholic diocese dropped out, it is not a failure of the unit scouters that LDS is dropping out, and it will not be a failure of the unit scouters when the next big group drops out.
  7. 8 points
    There are a great many of adults in our district that think Woodbadge is BSA4Adults. Barry
  8. 8 points
    My son will be a Scout, like I was in the 80s and 90s, at least in how I referred to myself, how my parents and friends referred to us, etc. We were "scouts", our leaders called us "scouts", they addressed us, instructed us, woke us up, yelled at us, got us in line, as "scouts" ("Scouts, gather 'round," "Scouts line up!" "Scouts, attention," "Scouts, rise and shine!"). I don't care if officially he'll never be a "Boy Scout". The name is the least important part of the program for me. All that matters is what he becomes as a result of going through it.
  9. 8 points
    ... physical evidence to prove that we—a rogue, high-adventure Boy Scouts of America Explorer troop of teenage girls in the 1970s—existed. As a group, we hiked the Appalachian Trail, paddled more than 1,000 miles of rivers in the Carolinas, and climbed some of the highest peaks in the Smokies on horseback. My quest was spurred by the October announcement from the BSA that it would begin accepting girls as Cub and Eagle scouts for the first time in its 107-year history. The media trumpeted that the gender barrier was falling, but I knew the Girl Rangers brought it down more than 48 years ago... Interesting article with photos. https://www.outsideonline.com/2300691/lost-legend-girl-rangers
  10. 7 points
    Problem is that national won't improve the situation, they want the increase in Eagles. If national wanted to improve the value, they would point blank say no more MBUs, making summer camp ins summer school, etc. They would allow SMs who know the Scouts didn't earn MBs to not give it to them. And when an EBOR appeal reaches national, AND THEY ACKNOWLEDGE MISTAKES WERE MADE (emphasis) they would make the Eagle redo some of the work BECAUSE HE SHOULD BE RESPONSIBLE FOR HIS ADVANCEMENT (emphasis again) and not just give it to him because "you do not penalize the Scout for the mistakes of the adults involved." And, you don't automatically grant a time extension because the Scout's parents threaten a lawsuit.
  11. 7 points
    I've never felt compelled to write on a forum until today. In my view, it is abundantly clear that the BSA knew this was coming and thus opened membership to girls in an attempt to shore up numbers and balance out the anticipated losses from LDS departure. What I find incredibly frustrating is that the BSA, as an organization, has taken the position of looking out for the BSA's best interest (member numbers, $$$) versus looking out for the people it is meant to serve (boys and young men). This shift in priorities is the hallmark indicator of a failing organization and is a an example that has been repeated time and time again across many spectrums of organizations. From public companies, to religious entities to athletic teams and more, when the original mission takes backseat to the organization's interest, then it has failed. The BSA will begin a slow downhill slide as a result of this, no doubt. We all know the program, over time, will become watered down, gender neutral, and thus the original spirit will die in favor of a more politically correct and progressive curriculum. Shame on our leadership for losing focus on the original mission and charter of the BSA which was to provide a means of developing our young boys into virtuous confident and independent young men utilizing principles of the Scout Oat and Law.
  12. 6 points
  13. 6 points
    499,989 left to go... My Pack has 11 girls now. 😀...............😥
  14. 6 points
    I always thought the soul of the program was the volunteers at the unit and district level that made it work either because of or despite National and Council priorities and despite any political differences that volunteers may have with one another. If the program has truly lost its soul, then that's a sad reflection on us, not on BSA corporate. People can claim that it was the BSA that left them, not the other way around, all they want but the fact is the BSA has made many changes over its existence and has marched ahead because of the volunteers who refused to take their ball and go home but stayed and adapted.
  15. 6 points
    My uniforms from 1973 (when I bought new ones for the Jamboree) until 1978 (when I got one that fit for the ECOH) also said "Scout BSA." It's the one thing about the "improved" scouting program that I actually think they got right. I always recall a remark I overheard my Scoutmaster make. My dad was talking to him, and he mentioned something about "that little boy," referring to one of the new scouts. My scoutmaster corrected him, saying, "they're not boys--they're scouts." IMHO, the whole point of what we're doing is turning out adults. They might start out as boys, but if we're doing it right, they'll quickly turn into something else, something which I prefer to call simply a "scout." I don't correct others, as my scoutmaster did, but I think he was right. That kid my dad was referring to wasn't a "little boy." He was a scout, and that's the word I use to describe youth members. Similarly, I don't expect to have any girls in our ranks. We'll still have scouts, some of whom are young women, and some of whom are young men. The "improved" scouting program of the 1970's tried to screw up a lot of things. But this is one that I think they had right, and I'm happy to see the name return. I have more thoughts on this at my blog: http://onetuberadio.com/2018/05/03/girls-in-the-bsa/
  16. 6 points
    My next move is easy. When we create our linked Troop, I will step down as SM of the boy Troop and become the SM of the new girl Troop. My wife (my kids' stepmother) just finished all the SM required training, and will be our first trained female ASM. I will provide the same leadership and opportunities for my 13-yo daughter and her peers that I have for my 16-yo son and his. I am not sure why everyone has their underthings in a twist about this. The mission statement of the BSA has always said YOUTH, without mentioning gender. Our flavor of Scouting should be available to any kid who wants to sign up. I have no intention of providing anything less than the same program to the girls that we have always provided to the boys. My daughter is frustrated with GSUSA, because unless the leaders want to do outdoor stuff, it doesn't happen. The GSUSA program may work for some, but its open-ended structure doesn't work for everyone. Its exclusivity is self-limiting, and their insistence that only women should be role models for the girls is short sighted. I get it that the powers that be haven't been as organized or open about these changes as they could have been or should have been. But to turn your back on the program because of a chromosome change is hardly Scoutlike. Just my opinion, of course...
  17. 6 points
    This change almost happened over four decades ago. For a variety of reasons, it didn't. I remember the debate. Of course there was no internet, but around campfires and letters to Pedro at Boy's Life, there was plenty of discussion. Regardless of where one might stand, I think it's important to keep in mind that our new scouts are not werewolves. Nor meth heads. Nor supernatural evil entities who are plotting the demise of the BSA. Let's remember they are girls. Peoples' daughters. They deserve respect, and the same opportunities as the boys. PS Some declare: "Then the GSA should change and offer high adventure etc." Answer: Go to Pizza Hut and demand a double cheeseburger. Note their response.
  18. 6 points
    The endgame for the BSA is the end to the phrases "boy scouts" and "girl scouts" in conjunction with it's program. It's just "scouts" now. We don't say "girl venturers" and "boy venturers" - it's just venturers. I'd suggest that as a community, we ought to embrace the new term and own in. Like it or not, it is what the program is now. Seems like we ought to get the most mileage from it we can.
  19. 6 points
    It's Tuesday and apparently there was a survey and the survey was of people (families) that are not involved in the Boy Scouts of America at this time (in fact some do not even live on this planet much less this particular dimensional plane) but they were overwhelming supportive of and interested in possibly becoming involved with an organization that perhaps was not named Boy Scouts of America and then there was a vote of the National Board of the currently named Boy Scouts of America and the vote was 123.2% in favor of possibly changing the name to something else (sadly Dallas Cowboys, Manchester United, and New York Yankees were already taken) and the hope is that the new name will generate a tremendous amount of revenue what with merchandising and knick knack sales that will help support the underfunded pension liabilities and balloon payments for the currently named Summit Bechtel Reserve and drive hundreds of thousands more youth and adults to join the newly renamed and rebranded organization
  20. 5 points
    Gentlemen, There is not much left in Irving of Scouting's core values. We've sacrificed the quality of Eagle, which used to be the standard for Excellence. We've given up on God, who sacrificed his son for us. We've told the boys that they shouldn't strive to be good strong men of high moral caliber; they should be co-operative facilitators who will avoid embarrassing others by being better. (Game of Life - Would badger?) We can't cut green trees to build towers and bridges. Leave no trace so that 4,000 others scouts can tread this sidewalk and imagine that they're first. Boys will never again be allowed to run around half-nekkid in loin cloths just having fun in the Order of the Arrow. Cultural appropriation is so gauche, don't you know? And there are surely perverts hiding in the trees. We've given up on the boys. Small groups, patrols, where they were encouraged to blow it all out; to learn their limits and strengths. Boys, you're not special. Anybody can play this game, and you MUST let anybody play with you. Sorry if you don't gain as much confidence and self-knowledge as before. Just think of how your loss will profit other groups... I respect the departure of LDS and Trail Life earlier. I wish them well with their youth. I mourn the degradation of BSA.
  21. 5 points
    The problem is that this requirement is a slippery slope. Atheism is probably the only thing that distinctly differs from the law. Unless BSA were to say you must be religion A and fulfill requirements 1,2, and 3 what does this requirement really mean? We all know many Christians that either never go to church, or go twice a year, or even worse go often and the minute they leave church they don't follow the golden rules. So in my mind, someone that is honest and declares being Atheist carries more weight than Christian (or others) that are completely fake.
  22. 5 points
    Gah, that article really chaps my backside. To quote: What a convenient mischaracterization. As long as we are on the subject of "allowing" girls, my daughter was "not allowed' to join any girl scout troop in our area because I was told they were full and not accepting any new girls - yet there were only three troops in the entire area of nine schools. If you "knew someone" or were in the right clique, you might be invited to join. I had to quite literally beg and plead to find her a group for this past year. GSUSA had better get their act together and stop blaming Scouts BSA for their own failings. If they don't make some significant changes in the next 2-3 years, I predict a massive decline in membership as the pipeline for girl Lions and Tigers grow. I am reminded of the fact that my cub scout daughter now gets a Boys Life magazine and she has a Webelos Handbook. In all her years as a Girl Scout, she has never received a single thing that instructed her on how to be a Girl Scout. Take note GSUSA. We spent the past weekend working on First Responder. Tonight we go to an art museum to wrap up her Art Explosion. What can I do with her at home for Girl Scouts? Nothing to my knowledge. There is almost no family aspect. I am not engaged in her Girl Scout success. GSUSA does not bring us together as a family as Cub Scouts does. I have grown closer to my daughter in the past two months of Webelos than I have for her past five years of Girl Scouts (and we go to Girl Scout activities all the time just the two of us).
  23. 5 points
    BSA is definitely not communist. Don't you remember when we all took those surveys on this issue and BSA shared the voting results with us?
  24. 5 points
    If law enforcement confirmed the "he was 30, she was 12" story, and yet the CC continues to say saying something different, I would think that neither of them should be serving in any Pack leadership capacity. She's dishonest and is covering for a child-molester, and he, well, his record speaks for itself. He should not be around children. Get your District Exec in on this asap. If this isn't resolved to your satisfaction, switch to another Pack. If this guy was allowed on overnights in my Pack, I'd be moving on down the road to the next Pack immediately.
  25. 5 points
    I keep picturing Spanky and Alfalfa with their "He-Man Wom3en Haters No Girlz Allowed" sign.
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