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  1. The SCOUTER.com virtual campfire has been lighting our community now for more than 25 years. It's hard for me to imagine that so much time has passed, and the thousands of Scouts and Scouters around the world that have learned and shared together. These are obviously incredibly trying times for Scouting and enormous transition for the organization. But I have always believed that the very best of Scouting was at the grassroots, found in the mentoring relationship of a leader and young Scout, honed on cold winter campouts and sharpened by the lessons of leadership and service. And these fo
    12 points
  2. The bankruptcy discussion is depressing me. So I have need to focus of good news, like last night. While I have been involved in Scouting as a Scouter for almost 30 years now, and have worked with I don't know how many Scouts over the years, last night was special. I sat on an EBOR for a Scout who was in my first Tiger Cub den back in the day. He is the second one in my den to make Eagle (the first being my oldest), and having watched him grow up I am really proud of him. Especially with the challenges at home he faced. This is a young man who will go far in life.
    11 points
  3. Forums work well in many ways, but it is probably not the best way to discuss the difficult feelings of this bankruptcy while also discussing the impact to child sex abuse survivors. However, there are not a lot of avenues for this discussion so as long as it remains scoutlike it can continue. That said, I do ask everyone to be patient with each other and not necessarily jump on a single word or phrase as a line of attack. Again, if we were sitting in person, it would be easier to read tone or intent in messaging. Forums are a bit unartful to communicate emotion. I really don't b
    11 points
  4. What is legally right is not always morally right.
    11 points
  5. After over 4 years of working in the field, today was my last day as a Professional Scouter. It's been an incredible ride, but it's time for me to move on and start the next chapter in my life. Thank you to everyone on this forum over the past years who helped me grow as a Pro. If you ever have any questions about Professional side of Scouting, or "the Dark Side", please don't hesitate to reach out. Volunteers are some of the kindest, most selfless people you will ever meet in this world. It was truly an honor to serve them, and I will miss working with them dearly.
    10 points
  6. So I have been given a lot of awards in scouting. More knots than allowed on a uniform, never thought much about them and kinda blew them off. Well tonight at our Bridge of Honor, I was awarded the Unit Leader Award of Merit. The thing that makes this stand out to me is that I was nominated and recommended for the award by my scouts. That makes it special to me.
    10 points
  7. The mental fallout from my abuse was mostly dormant prior to the current lawsuit. It would still torment me in idle moments. Or at night sometimes when I lay in bed trying not to blame myself after so many years for something I didn’t even understand at age 11. After I signed onto the lawsuit I began to scavenge info from the web, constantly looking for updates. It became almost an obsession. Thats how I found this forum. The dialog here calms me to a degree. Perhaps being among birds of a feather, both as a survivor and as a former Scout. Please don’t lock the thread. It’s a va
    9 points
  8. I want need to thank you. By speaking up here, you have put a (virtual) face on the issue. By sharing some of the stories of your abuse, you have made it feel real in ways that "numbers" can't. By opening up about the struggles you have faced as a result of the abuse, you have exposed raw truths which many of us have probably never even considered. I am terribly sorry it happened to you. But I am grateful you are here. now. at the virtual campfire. with other scouters. I have learned a lot from you. I especially want to say these things to @ThenNow. You have given me a lot to t
    8 points
  9. I would like to not lock the thread but we seem to be in a rut that we need to get out of before any progress can be made. Here are some observations that might help. First, human dignity is the cornerstone of the Bible. (yep, hang in there.) It is used to resolve conflicts. It is the goal of how to treat each other. The level of evil or sin is based on how much indignity one causes another. Shy of murder I can't think of anything more undignified then an adult chronically abusing a child. The main subject is child sexual abuse but we also heard about parental abuse yesterday. Next,
    8 points
  10. The following 2016 thesis submittal is really interesting. Interesting comments based on (starting page 28) Theissen polygon analysis of scouting membership data. Interesting figures start on page 28+. https://kuscholarworks.ku.edu/bitstream/handle/1808/24173/Hubbard_ku_0099M_15024_DATA_1.pdf?sequence=1 Obviously a pro-scouter. One sentence near the end is interesting and timely. "Scouting is not for everybody but for those who are active, the chief lessons are not discrimination, blind patriotism, or xenophobia; takeaways are self-reliance, critical thinking, the value of co
    8 points
  11. As an Eagle Scout, reading through this whole thread has been very disheartening. By way of introduction, I earned my Eagle Scout about fifteen years ago, and I still had enough time left to complete three Eagle Palms. I served variously as Senior Patrol Leader, Assistant Senior Patrol Leader, Patrol Leader, OA Representative, and eventually Vice Chapter Chief and Chapter Chief of my OA Chapter. As Chapter Chief, I helped oversee a yearly Chapter Conclave, sort of a swan song for my Scouting career as I aged out about six weeks later. I even co-taught a course at the University of Scou
    8 points
  12. If the BSA comes out of bankruptcy having managed to hold onto the Summit, while LC's lose their camps, there will be alot of upset local volunteers.
    8 points
  13. I would encourage everyone to not ask @ThenNow to rehash particular circumstances. They can be found by patiently browsing his posts. From what I read, they were far from legal. His claim would have been actionable had he been granted the resilience to act on it.
    8 points
  14. I have major issues with BSA actively entering the political arena. By mentioning B. Taylor, they have gone way beyond selling war bonds and into anti-police propaganda. That is something that they can't take back. I don't think that scouts should actively engage in any social issues. That's not our role. We should be role models for society through our actions, not our words. I don't like forced anything - it reeks of insincerity. If your troop/pack is open to anyone who wants to join up and participate in this organization, then that's all that should be required. We are probably one
    8 points
  15. As I said previously: HIPAA is the most misunderstood law and it has gotten worse since COVID. The HIPAA Rules apply to covered entities and business associates. What is defined as covered entities and business associates? Only three entities A Health Care Provider A Health Plan A Health Care Clearinghouse Are you a health care provider? Are you a health plan? Are you a health care clearinghouse? Here's a handy chart to walk you through it. No? Are you the business associate of any of the above 3? No? Then So, your IT guy M
    8 points
  16. @John-in-KC there was a reduction in the National Council Staff by 110 positions yesterday. These are trying times, I have no desire nor inclination to join the debate or speculation here. Good people, who care about our country, our youth and the program of the BSA are no longer employed. Keep them and Scouting in your thoughts and prayers. RichardB
    8 points
  17. The BSA would've been in it's current position regardless of what it did regarding membership policies. The bill for sexual abuse was going to come due regardless.
    7 points
  18. With respect to the the TCC $103B claim value estimate, it is probably conservative but it is also academic. The BSA's most valuable asset is the insurance. Some councils participated in its insurance program a year or a few prior to 1984 when the national BSA insurance program became mandatory for all councils. Some of the pre-1984 policies named the local councils, troops and camps as "additional insureds." Before the national insurance program was established LC's maintained their own separate insurance. Much less is known about those policies because the LC's have been unwilling or
    7 points
  19. Uh, no..... this is stealing the opportunity from the scouts to actually learn from doing the requirements for the merit badge. I am so tired of Merit badges that are just hand waved, Eagle projects that are just a bench, and positions of responsibilty where the scout doesn't actually do anything for six months. My scouts know that I am "a hard grader" but they also know that when I sign of on a requirement, they know it and are proud that they earned it. There are too many people that are awarded merit badges and ranks that they don't deserve.
    7 points
  20. I'll do my best to explain what I have seen in this thread, so hopefully I don't misconstrue the message. The one thing I would say about @ThenNow is that it does seem that he cares about the BSA and sees the value of the program. He has mentioned how impressed he is by what he sees from many of the comments .... volunteers who spend much if not most of their free time working to provide children an experience that is unique and provides life long value. That said, he was sexually abused in the worst way by his Scoutmaster. No one within the BSA prevented it or took action (as far as he ca
    7 points
  21. Scouting was never intended to be family oriented. Scouting was intended to allow youth to develop themselves on their own. It was designed to replace the gangs of Victorian and Edwardian England, and give them a direction and purpose that would make them better citizens. I have seen first hand what can happen with "family Scouting." It is not pretty, and Scouts will leave. They will get fed up by the constant parental interruptions at meetings and on camp outs. They will get fed up with the parents overruling their decisions on their program. They will get fed up with parents allowing th
    7 points
  22. The thing that has bothered and challenged me for a long time is that scouting where I live doesn't even look like our local high school or the local sports leagues, drama clubs, high school bands, etc. in terms of diversity of membership. I live in a pretty median mid-west suburb. If you go to the local high school you see a fair number of kids whose ethnicity is clearly Middle Eastern, Asian, Indian Sub continent, Hispanic, et al. But if you go to our district camporee the ethnicity is almost uniformly white. There's no reason to think there is any disparity between their parents in
    7 points
  23. Here is an Excel plot (with no alterations except to add the title so I cannot be accused of manipulating the graph) of the last 30 years of claims that the TCC was discussing as being so terrible. Certainly, any occurrence of child abuse is too many but the trend is certainly dramatically decreasing. There have been over 2 million members during most of the time of this graph and those members were not static so that every year some join while others leave. Since I do not have actual tenure information, let us assume that the membership turns over every ten years (it is more frequent than
    7 points
  24. In order for BSA to demonstrate that two thirds of its assets are restricted and unavailable to creditors they would need to have been incredibly disciplined in their accounting and bookkeeping over the past century to make sure there was no comingling of the various funds and properties. This is not a habit of mind that I've seen them exhibit in any other sphere of their behavior. I have always thought that one of their weaknesses of BSA as an organization is that virtually everyone in the organization has come up through the ranks and so there is little opportunity for new ideas or dis
    7 points
  25. No medical professional or researcher would claim that ANY drug or vaccine is "100% SAFE". All risk is relative. We have risk factors and comorbidities. We have personally seen at least 5 friends and/or loved ones die from COVID. My wife is a cancer survivor. We have 2 close family members who are currently fighting stage 4 cancer. My son and his wife are "COVID deniers" and have been banned from several stores for refusing to wear masks. Our grandson was moved to a private school that did not enforce precautions, then had to close for 2 weeks when ALL of the teachers had positive tests.
    7 points
  26. Too many Americans have been staking out absolute positions and daring others to cross a rhetorical line. Sometimes the rhetoric on even this site has trended in a similar direction, with folks just not showing respect for reasoned but differing views. The divisions that evolve reduce our confidence in our nation's Constitution, and similarly in the fundamental approaches in Scouting. The WWII combat veterans who were the Scoutmasters and Skippers of my youth were not that way. They fought hard in a war to ease my way through life, and Boy Scouts and Sea Scouts helped make me what I hope i
    7 points
  27. My dad was a retired Navy Chief. I can hear him saying, "don't call me Sir...I work for a living." (or worse)
    7 points
  28. IMHO it would also be a good time to rethink "Eagle required" merit badges - subject areas, number, difficulty...
    7 points
  29. One of the Scouting FB groups that had these requirements posted, took down the post and 153 (last time I looked) comments down and is asking folks to report anyone who does post them. Sounds Orwellian to me. I think that they did not like the negative feedback they were receivint about this MB. One poster pointed out that Disabilities Awareness covered a lot of the topics in DEI, yet it was never Eagle required. He stated it is purely a political MB in his opinion. And considering that the requirements have not been approved 11 days before go live and no MB pamphlets for this MB
    7 points
  30. This is a general post, my first on the forum. I have read this thread from the beginning. If you have access, of which I'm unsure as a newbie, you can see my background. I'm both a former high-achieving Scout and Sexual Abuse Survivor Claimant in the Chapter 11. I have many thoughts on this matter overall. Most notably, the potential for Scouting to survive and how the case has evolved, especially as it concerns the incredible - and I use the word advisedly and specifically - number of claims. Like many of you and others I know, my expectation was to see a maximum number of 5,000-10,000
    7 points
  31. Let's start with the "equity" portion. Equity is an impossible goal to achieve. No matter how we strive we will never achieve equal outcomes. The goal of "equity" is a myth, an impossible achievement cooked up by Marxists/Postmodernists. We will ALL make choices in our lives that result in fortunate/unfortunate outcomes. In the US, the VAST majority of what we achieve is due to our personal choices, not the opinions of others. DEI philosophy is not merely "creating a culture that welcomes and respects diverse perspectives" or "creating a sense of belonging and build communities where eve
    7 points
  32. Likewise. Which is all I'm looking for. But by the chosen phrasing, I fear that this is NOT what we are seeing. If "white privilege"/"check your privilege" or "systemic racism" is brought up as a given fact they have to learn about, then we are in an unnecessary fight. BSA has already put out a press release supporting BLM and IMMEDIATELY turned off all commenting. They stated "We condemn the murders of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor..." Taylor's death was NOT murder and George Floyd's death is under dispute. We should NOT be involving ourselves in these matters with
    7 points
  33. In the context of this lawsuit, the BSA isn't rotten, nor does it have a dark side. The organization has given society a program that only intends to build better citizens. It is that simple. People can be rotten and induce a dark side of themselves on unsuspecting innocent families, but that has nothing to do with the BSA or it's programs. If one can't see this reality, they likely need to get as far away as possible so as not to pollute the minds of the innocent. There is no doubt in my mind that if the good of scouting from it's beginning could be measured against the bad th
    7 points
  34. I don't think the concern is that GS posted the 5 justices. I think the concern is that the GS took down the post as a result of "woke" pressure because one of the justices was Amy Coney Barrett.
    7 points
  35. Last night we had an adult leader meeting. Our CM has been very busy with work and family responsibilities. We gave her a report on our successful Summit Merit Badge Camp and Northern Tier trip. We did Philmont last year and she asked us to compare it to Northern Tier. They're very different adventures. I loved Philmont and Northern Tier. One thing that was common about Summit and NT this year was the lack of program. I know some won't want to hear this, but it was a great thing. Hear me out. Normally at Summit they have evening program. This year, the scouts were free to do wh
    7 points
  36. There can be no doubt that BSA refusal to include homosexuals or girls until forced to do so due to social and financial pressure has had an impact on membership. It might not have affected it in terms of scouts immediately withdrawing, but it has definitely had an impact on recruitment and image. Its recalcitrance definitely cost BSA financial support from such high profile donors as the United Way to Levi Strauss. Why would that happen if not a reflection of increasingly negative public opinion? In the nearly 20 years I've been involved in scouting, I've seen schools gradually cut involvemen
    7 points
  37. Actually wrote a article for my district newsletter about this topic. Encouraging Troops to get out, use the patrol method, and follow council and local guidelines. I've copied it here: "As our units start up fall programing during COVID 19, we are faced with a great opportunity to embrace a core aspect of the Scouting program: The Patrol Method. Robert Baden Powell was once quoted “The patrol method is not a way to operate a Boy Scout Troop, it is the only way. Unless the patrol method is in operation you don’t really have a Boy Scout Troop.” A patrol, a group of eight or so Sc
    7 points
  38. Old Eagle Scout and new Lion Dad here... I’m jumping back into scouting with a kindergarten daughter. That’s not something I would have ever dreamed of when I was a scout, and I couldn’t be more excited. Scouting absolutely prepared me for life... and the Air Force Academy, 7 years on active duty, 4 (and counting) in the reserves, Wall Street, and everything in between. What else provides kids an opportunity to camp, hike, shoot, swim, sail, ride... and learn to lead and be good people along the way? If that’s what you’re looking for, you’re in the right place. It’s only been a few w
    7 points
  39. IMHO. There have been way too many scouters who think every Eagle project should be something more than a scout and his buddies slapping together a nice looking bench in a public location. I have more trouble with projects that are barn-raisers that take thousands of man-hours where the scout’s hand on the tiller seemed incredibly light.
    7 points
  40. Don't fall for it. The council doesn't have the authority. The council can't force a Chartered Organization to accept anyone in their unit. If the parent doesn't like your unit, invite them to go elsewhere.
    7 points
  41. First, we had a fantastic time. Really, it couldn't have been better. Second, I'll post the route we did later. I intentionally let the scouts and interpreter deal with that. We left Springfield, VA, flew from Reagan National Airport direct to MSP. We rented a 15 passenger van for our crew of 8 and gear and drove 4 hours to Virginia, MN. Not sure why we did that to just end up in Virginia again. Virginia is the closest town with national hotel chains. We stayed at the AmericInn with a great view of the railroad tracks. Well, my room did. Get the front of the hotel to be away from
    7 points
  42. Hello All. New here-first post. I read these forums for hours and hours, and signed up to post this. So, as I understand the upshot of it all: 1. That National initially indicated that Local Councils would pay nothing and be protected but now the Local Councils are expected to pay $600 million which will result in the sale of hundreds of Local Council Camps and Council offices, though the National High Adventure Camps will be protected and survive. 2. That National initially indicated that Chartering Organizations would pay nothing and be protected but now Chartering Org
    6 points
  43. Adding to this good news thread with an entry of my own. My daughter had her Eagle BOR tonight and there are now two Eagles in the family. Just a proud dad post, that is all.
    6 points
  44. As cryptic as the judge's comments and questions seemed, I think she will do the following (generally), because there is no alternative for her. She knows there is no support for the BSA plan A. The toggle plan means cram down and she knows she cannot cram down a plan over the objections of 95% of the victims, either politically or legally. A cram down has never been done in a sexual abuse bankruptcy and she won't do it here. First, Kosnoff's/Abused in Scouting's campaign to encourage its 17,000 clients to write to the court has been impactful even if the judge redacted portions of them.
    6 points
  45. I guess I wish that Summer camp was based on the adventure and fun rather than merit badges. That is the difference I see with camps geared toward Troops vs. Crews. The Troop camps talk about how awesome the adventure is but you are focused on picked your 4-6 merit badges and spend time sitting in a class or walking to another one. They aren't with their troop or patrol. So it is focused on the merit badges as the outcome of the camp. A camp geared to a crew is focused on what they will do as a group and experience. They can typically earn merit badges along the way but that isn't pr
    6 points
  46. Anyone able to provide me a list of required merit badges for Eagle Rank in 1950? I am just curious how much these requirements have changed over the past 70 years. I am concerned that scouting is becoming more like school and will push children to not join the program (and not stay when they get fully exposed to the program). Generally, I am more inclusive than my parents and my scout aged children are more inclusive than me. That trend will continue. To create a new merit badge for this is overkill. Just add an item in Citizenship in the Community. It is my understanding that this
    6 points
  47. What concerns me is that this places the largest denominational sponsor of Scouting units and many of the local churches in a potentially adversarial relationship with the BSA. There will be hesitancy to continue to sponsor units at the present time in this type of environment. Many of the United Methodist Churches have sponsored Scouting for decades. A whole new group of church leaders are now working with the packs and troops today and have had no understanding of their role and accountability as an "Owner" of a Scouting unit(s). Unfortunately, most of our COR's have not been trained, do
    6 points
  48. This is the second in a planned series of three posts related to past and present crises in Boy Scouting. They reflect my observations as a long-time Scouter and Scouting historian. A few years ago, I received unexpected telephone calls from a New York Times reporter and a CNN producer asking me to comment, from the perspective of a long-time volunteer Scouter in the heartland, about the controversies which were shaking the organization and had now burst out into the public arena. In reality, the storm clouds had been building on the horizon for several years. Almost two decades ag
    6 points
  49. Yes. The prime reason scouting is in such a dire place is because of deep rooted, long term internal problems. BSA should never have allowed a single religion to run a shadow program within a program the way it did with LDS. BSA should never have limited its managerial talent pool largely to people within the organization. BSA should never have shifted its focus to marketing and membership instead of remembering that it is a movement focused on service, citizenship and character first. And the out of doors. BSA should have never allowed its organizational components -- national, council, unit
    6 points
  50. The problem with the "silent majority" is the same problem I think of when I hear the quote "the only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing" - the problem in thinking, in trusting, in assuming that others feel the same as one's self, and that they will follow a similar course of action in the end. That kind of trust is important, but it is not enough. That line is, of course, the quippy, easy-to-digest version of a quote from Edmund Burke that should be understood in full: That's how I like to think of this place - a forum in which 'the good (can) a
    6 points
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