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Posts posted by HICO_Eagle

  1. I remember boys hiking the 3+ miles from the Boy Scout summer camp to the nearby Girl Scout summer camp in the evenings in the late 1970s.  As was said earlier, "where there's a will, there's a way" -- but we don't have to make it easier for them.

    I personally felt there was a place for -- nay, a need for -- single-sex instruction in some things.  The vast majority of teenage boys I knew -- from the time when I was a teenager myself until present -- don't focus well when there's a teenage girl nearby.  Or rather, they focus well but not necessarily on what I need them to focus on.  Having said that, I resigned myself to having lost that battle (and several others) years ago which is why I am now retired from Scouting.

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  2. I don't remember the prohibition against convoying on the old tour permit but we usually only had 3 vehicles when going anywhere and we made sure everyone understood the route we were taking before setting out. The difference often being that the drive leader HAD to lead from the front rather than middle as on a hike. I suppose others would have called that convoying, we called it being aware and keeping the group together.

  3. 3 hours ago, johnsch322 said:

    "was twice "called to task" for taking nude photographs of Boy Scouts," you need a law to know that was wrong?

    "two Scouts came forward to say Brock had "relationships with them as well as other members of the troop" and I know for a fact that the types of relationships he was having was hella illegal, even in the 60's.

    The thing is neither BSA as a national organization nor the troop involved had standing.  The Scouts involved were the ones who should have filed charges.  The problem for BSA then was that accusations without proof of criminal conduct could have had serious repercussions and exposed the organization to liability.

    Put yourself in the SE or TCC shoes -- you have hearsay witness testimony but you don't know this yourself.  You could file a charge with the police but you know the youth and their parents just want it to go away and may not testify.  You know under the laws of the time that he could then sue you and the organization for defamation of character.

    At the time, ejecting him and barring his future participation seems like the easy out.

    23 minutes ago, clbkbx said:

    It is pretty clear that the topic is about BSA’s culpability in general. You make an over arching conclusion about that… in the same post where you say you were only talking about one specific example and the goalposts were being moved. 

    Again, when you want to talk about culpability, BSA removed him and prevented him from rejoining.  What more could they do in 1968?  They were not the victims and in many (most?) cases, the youth would not testify or file charges.

    21 minutes ago, clbkbx said:

    And from the Boy Scouts who very prominently purportedly hold themselves to a higher standard! 

    They did hold themselves to a higher standard and they chose to eliminate the threat as best as they (thought they) could.  Saying or insinuating someone had homosexual or bisexual inclinations was a far different matter in 1968 than in 1998 or 2008 or 2018.

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  4. In my opinion, the breakage point is/was the low matriculation rate from Cubs to Boy Scouts. Creating Lions and Tigers bumped up those initial enrollment numbers which was touted by National and professionals but it seemed to accelerate the decrease in Cubs matriculating to Boy Scouts from what I could tell.

    Cubs to Boy Scouts is a natural transition point. Pre-Tigers, the parents would have spent 4 years with their boys in Cubs. The level of parental engagement varied of course but was generally high. Then they were faced with Boy Scouts or ... something else. Directing their boys to various athletics instead of Boy Scouts meant the parental involvement could reduce to dropping the boy off at practice (and not even doing that if the city has good public transportation or the boy or his friends could drive) and attending a competition once a week.

    In my experience, the parent most involved with Cubs were mothers and they were historically not inclined toward camping so they didn't have to worry about being asked to camp if the boy discontinued Scouting. What they often didn't know until I talked to them at AOL ceremonies was that they weren't expected to go camping with their boys. The relief I saw on their faces when I told them they were welcome to join us but weren't expected to was palpable.

    In response to 1980Scouter, I don't think putting scout offices and shops on camp properties is feasible. Camp properties are generally well away from the city or council center so would be very inconvenient for troops to drop off paperwork (which could be submitted virtually) or individuals to pick up Scouting materials. In Colorado Springs, decades ago, they had an arrangement with a local department store that stocked nearly everything you could find at the store at the Scout office but that department store has long gone out of business. In the National Capitol Region, the "local" camp is a long nasty drive away. For many in the NCR, it would actually be more convenient to drive to the Baltimore Council camp than to go to Goshen.

  5. On 8/16/2023 at 8:55 AM, Ojoman said:

    One of todays PROBLEMS is that the program is now 6 years instead of 4. That is a long time to retain a kids interest. I would suggest building the program in 3 stages, lion/tiger, wolf/bear and Webelos/Aol. A great program retains and attracts.

    I didn't like Tigers when they unveiled it because I thought a lot of parents seemed burned out at AOL ceremonies as it was.  We went from telling parents we wanted them to participate but not be helicopter parents to telling them we'd love to see them in at least 1 event a year (in other words, we're not asking you to be in everything like Cubs did).  I felt like Lions were even more counter-productive.  3 years to do Bobcat/Wolf/Bear and 1-2 for Webelos/AOL seemed right to me when I went through it.

  6. One of the things that kept me from getting more merit badges when I was a Scout was the difficulty in finding counselors (even more so, ones that I could get to on the public bus system).  As an adult volunteer, it was still difficult to get and keep counselors outside the basic core subjects, particularly when National started demanding more paperwork to show you had the background or expertise on the subject.  Charging them a fee to register is not going to help that situation.

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  7. On 8/16/2023 at 1:44 PM, SiouxRanger said:

    Which socio-political groups?

    Specifically, small but very vocal activist segments of Socialist/Communist, atheist, and LGBT groups.  I've been watching the attacks since the 1980s. There have been others but those 3 communities have predominated in the attacks on Scouting that I've seen in public media for the past 40 years.

    On 8/16/2023 at 1:49 PM, SiouxRanger said:

    Meaning what? That a continuation of the failed IVF system continue?

    Meaning Scouting as I've known it is done -- you can't roll back the clock.  The separations we're seeing with charter organizations, youth departing for other activities or organizations, these are all indicators that Scouting will never go back to what it was even if the socio-political attacks stopped tomorrow.

    On 8/16/2023 at 1:53 PM, SiouxRanger said:

    I don't think I've seen evidence of that. BSA is being held liable as a co-tortfeasor along with the miscreants. Miscreants have natural lives.  Corporations have infinite lives. At some point, only the corporation is left standing on the field as the miscreant is deceased.

    In fact, other than in a legal context, most folks, at least in my realm, hold the BSA in high esteem. Despite all the legal turmoil.

    I must move in wider social circles.  I've seen parents actively deflect their boys away from Scouting.  We've gone from an era where it was acceptable (but dorky) to wear your Scout uniform to school to an era where it isn't even acceptable lest the Scout get verbally abused.

    There are still plenty of cases where the miscreant is still alive -- I have seen precious few (none, actually) tort cases pursuing the miscreant for their actions.  From what I understood, BSA agreed to the settlement because the class action lawyers expanded the class so much that there was no hope of getting into details of exactly how BSA was liable in these cases -- and consequently, the risk of going to trial was just too great.  I may be wrong on that but that's how I understood the decision to settle.

    On 8/16/2023 at 2:35 PM, SiouxRanger said:

    Precisely true.

    However, the BSA is not unique in this respect.  EVERY (not some, not most,) lawsuit targets those legal entities against which liability can be established (that is, the law and facts make them liable), AND which has assets capable of paying an award of damages.

    The legal principals which establish liability have long been established, without reference to the existence of the BSA.  (Theories of negligence, gross negligence, willful and wanton, intentional, products liability, vicarious liability, strict liability, and so on.)

    So, if you really have a problem with BSA being caught up in this tangled web of legal liability, take it up BSA National, ITS lawyers and ITS administrators.  These principles of liability existed when BSA National made its decisions on how to handle abuse claims.

    And, either:

    1.  those folks failed to appreciate the risk and application of the rules (entirely understandable considering that many decades have passed and societal norms have changed significantly),


    2.  those folks were business and legal geniuses and decided to run the risk, nonetheless. (Leaving future BSA employees to deal with the consequences.) (The sentiment being:  "I'll have my pension in 2 years, and the guy I just hired will hire someone in 20 years, and that newly hired will have to deal with it 20 years after that, or if really lucky, pass the problem downstream to someone else.")

    Regardless, "that day" has come to pass.

    No matter, the future of the BSA is not a burden the survivors have any obligation to bear. 

    If according some measure of justice (haven't seen it yet in the whole bankruptcy process to date) results in the dissolution of BSA National, so be it.

    The Scouting Program has been my only activity outside work. From age 6 to 70. My Scouting resume is 4 pages long, single spaced, most positions held 10 to 15 years and 3 or 4 held simultaneously.  It is what I know, love, and I can participate with my children, all Eagles.

    I am no BSA basher.

    But the BSA cannot move forward until there is some closure regarding the damage done to the Survivors.

    Scouting has not been my only extracurricular activity but it was the main one for roughly 40 years until I retired from Scouting.

    I have had little regard for the "professionals" at National for much of that time as I saw the program diminished year after year.  Looking at the Handbook or Field Guide from the 1960s or 1970s and comparing it to what was published in the 1990s or 2000s was somewhat demoralizing.  Even before the settlement, some of the financial deals originating at National were IMO suspect and placed the organization on a bad financial footing for the future.

    On the other hand, I still maintain BSA as an organization did not damage these victims.  I find it ironic that the step BSA did take to protect youth -- maintaining secret files of suspect volunteers -- was what was used to push the lawsuit forward and force a settlement.  As you say, the principles of liability have been long established and outside this particular case -- and BSA prevailed against being held liable for many reasons, not the least of which was that there is a very real difference between miscreants evading the protection protocols and the organization supporting or even actively ignoring them.

    On 8/16/2023 at 3:46 PM, SiouxRanger said:

    Well, a statistical analysis of where the assaults occurred is an essential element of your argument.

    In my world, a statistical analysis means a voluminous data collection and rigorous mathematical analysis.  I haven't done that so I stated I haven't done a statistical analysis.  However, simply reading the reports and accounts over the years shows numerous instances of assaults through youth athletic teams.  Girls' swim teams, gymnastic teams, basketball, volleyball, etc.

    On 8/16/2023 at 4:07 PM, SiouxRanger said:

    I would really like to see sources and statistics for this.

    From my experience, opportunities for abuse in children's sports seem to be much less than those in Scouting camping experiences.

    Kids leave their parents' car, go to the field, play, return, and leave. Where is the time for things to go wrong?

    Scouts are gone from Friday afternoon until Sunday morning.  Two nights. Lots of time window for abuse to happen.

    In my experience, there very few parents present at high school and even junior high school practices, team rallies, etc.  Coaches used to frequently have 1-on-1 sessions with athletes and from the accounts I've read, this is often when the assaults would take place.

    In the reports I've read or heard, many if not most of the assaults in Scouting similarly did not occur at group activities like camping when the miscreant was likely to be discovered but instead at private sessions at homes or other isolated places.

    On 8/17/2023 at 6:04 AM, SiouxRanger said:

    And yet, the statistics?


    On 8/17/2023 at 6:03 AM, SiouxRanger said:

    Well, agreed, week-long sports camps provide similar opportunities, though scout unit campsites are intentionally wide-spread to enhance the wilderness experience. Never having any experience with sports camps-just scouting.

    As stated above, most of the accounts I've read or heard were not at camps but instead at isolated places like homes or (in the case of sports teams) gym facilities which the coach knew would be vacant.

    On 8/17/2023 at 6:29 AM, SiouxRanger said:

    I just cannot understand this.

    Until your post I don't recall anyone, anywhere claiming BSA has a "r...c...."

    This smacks of a "straw man" argument where a false, inflammatory statement is made, then to dramatically knock it down.

    You seem to want to dismiss my statements as a strawman but this is something I heard directly from a family member, the wife of a cousin, in a family Message channel.  I've heard it repeated on popular media and in public forums online.  Direct, first-person witness to these statements here.

    On 8/17/2023 at 6:37 AM, SiouxRanger said:

    By whom, how?

    The attacks on what have traditionally viewed as pillars of American society have been going on in public media and discourse for decades.  Various bad actions have been bundled together into wholesale attacks on clergy and churches for decades.  The same has went on with attacks on the police -- including direct physical ambushes of policemen  in their vehicles -- portraying Michael Brown as a "teenager" (technically he was one at 19) and overlooking his assault on the officer who finally shot him in self-defense.

    Activist elements in American society have been pushing against Scouting for decades.  During the Clinton administration, my Scout troop was denied permission to camp at the US Air Force Academy because of recent policy changes (which were reversed after Clinton left the White House).

    Denial isn't a river.

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  8. 2 minutes ago, InquisitiveScouter said:

    @AwakeEnergyScouter, you see this confusion everywhere.

    There is a common misconception that our "core product" is Eagle Scouts.  Ask parents what they want for their child out of Scouts, BSA... you'll get this answer most of the time.

    Our core product is actually parsed out here:  "The Scouting program has specific objectives, commonly referred to as the “Aims of Scouting.” They are character developmentleadership developmentcitizenship training, and personal fitness."


    Agreed.  That misperception -- which derived from the inarguable benefits resulting from being an Eagle Scout in years past -- was part of what led to the increasing Eagle mill phenomenon.  In my opinion, that kind of watered down the status of being an Eagle but my focus was on making the Scouts into better, more prepared adults so while I didn't care for Eagle mills, I didn't let them distract me from what I was trying to do.

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  9. On 8/6/2023 at 10:50 PM, AwakeEnergyScouter said:

    Occam's Razor suggests that the lawsuit was the result of the BSA failing to take appropriate action on rape and other sexual abuse reports to protect scouts from further abuse, much like the Catholic Church's own pedophile shuffling scandal.

    No, it really doesn't because the fact of the matter is that BSA did take steps to protect Scouts from sexual abuse.  There were some cases where troops or councils hid the abuse because they didn't want to deal with the public scandal but in many cases, the abuse was alleged and not proven.  BSA held files where the suspicion was strong (but not enough for legal prosecution) in order to keep the alleged abusers from having direct contact with Scouts -- and these secret files were ironically the evidence used in court in the claims that BSA should have done more.

    The other problem Scouting faced then -- which is why the files were secret -- was that allegations of homosexuality could ruin people's lives.  That would have exposed BSA to liability to defamation.  No one considers that today because homosexuality is much more generally accepted (and therefore open) today.

    All of that leads to the fact society today doesn't like the action BSA took to protect those Scouts because it's deemed to be homophobic today.  The fact of the matter is that while pedophiles are a very small percentage of the population -- homosexual or heterosexual -- the pedophiles Scouting had to worry about until about the late 1980s were men attracted to boys.  There were very few women working as adult leaders until then and no girls in the units to worry about.  It was easier for BSA to just have a blanket "no homosexuals" policy back then.  You can argue today that it was like using a sledgehammer to drive a picture-hanging nail  but BSA did take action to protect the Scouts.



    Alleging the lawsuit is just a malicious attack by groups that include fellow scouts and scouters, but had nothing to do with the fact that 92,700 scouts were sexually abused under the auspices of the BSA, is dividing the scout "sangha" while also declining to accept the BSA's responsibility for allowing pedophiles to continue abusing. 

    Those Scouts were not "sexually abused under the auspices of the BSA" and that's precisely the problem I have with the lawsuit.  First, while the miscreants used BSA to find their targets, the abuse frequently (usually? I haven't done a statistical analysis of the cases) occurred outside BSA-sanctioned activities.  Second, the lawyers for plaintiffs sought to expand the pool to include all forms of abuse, not just sexual.  This tactic worked for them because the list of plaintiffs got so large that there was no real prospect of interviewing all of them to determine what portion were in fact a result of pedophiles and what portion of them were erroneously covered over knowingly by units or councils.

    The percentage of heterosexual pedophiles infiltrating school athletic teams or other youth groups is at least as high as it was for Scouting -- surprise, surprise, miscreants actively seek opportunities for their targets.



    This just isn't complicated. Pedophilia is really bad. Covering for pedophiles is therefore also really bad. If you do it, expect people to be very angry when you get caught covering their crimes up, especially the victims. People don't really need any additional reasons to be mad at that point, pedophilia 105% covers it. Leftists definitely didn't make scouter pedophiles rape anyone, or prevent the BSA from filing police reports or proper banning all suspected pedophiles from the organization. Leftists didn't tell abused scouts not to tell their parents. You may be sincere in your belief in this attack, but the BSA was in full control of itself when it comes to dealing with pedophiles.

    NO one is defending pedophilia (well, not in the BSA or on this forum -- there are some sickos who are still trying to normalize it even as they are trying to change the language from "pedophiles" to "minor-attracted persons".  While the pedophiles themselves likely came from a variety of political stripes, leftists were the ones attacking Scouting and other pillars of American society for decades and the ones using these incidents decades after the fact to deflect the blame and financial ruin from the miscreants themselves to BSA and charter organizations.

    This switch from the fact of the crimes to claiming BSA had a "rape culture" (something I have heard personally from family members) or sponsored these activities is a typical example of the leftist tactics in this regard.



    The BSA's karma has ripened. Looking to put the blame outside is just going to create more bad karma that's going to ripen in the future. Please don't sow more seeds of suffering.

    The good news about karma ripening is that it becomes easier to move into a more meritorious direction, so let's take this opportunity to create bliss instead. The truth is out; we can do our best to help the victims and make sure that we handle any future pedophiles and their crimes right. We have no more reputation to lose. This is how we burn up any remainder of bad karma and prevent more of the same from accumulating. But it starts with not blaming others for the BSA's faults.

    Sorry but I object to the blame-shifting and that's precisely what has gone on with this lawsuit and the resulting impacts.  Instead of blaming the criminals and their proclivities, these socio-political forces have tried for decades to (and succeeded in) shifting the blame to churches and organizations who they wanted to undermine anyway.  Blaming BSA or churches for the activities of these criminals and destroying the future is not (in my opinion) a more meritorious way at all.  It is the accepted way for a certain socio-political segment of modern society but that is a far cry from being more meritorious.

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  10. 35 minutes ago, AwakeEnergyScouter said:

    Scouting is civic, not political.

    My point was that Scouting in the US has been under attack by certain socio-political groups for decades -- since at least the 1980s in my experience.  The lawsuit that resulted in huge financial liabilities and the loss of various Scouting properties and damage to charter organizations -- and therefore the withdrawal of the Catholic church that is the subject of this thread -- was a product of that attack.

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  11. On 8/2/2023 at 5:56 AM, SSScout said:

    What's that jazz number, it ain't the heat, it's the humidity?

    Birds come home to roost.  BSA as we knew it is done.  Thankfully.  

    As has been said here and elsewhere, if the past BSA had only been honest and open about the problems, had only dealt with the problem makers instead of just slapping the wrists and letting them move on  to other areas. If only.... BSA  had confronted the bullies, the sexual offenders, the ones that didn't think the Scout Promise and Law applied to them and held them up to the Light , made them (unfortunately) visible.  If only.... 

    When was the last time you got a traffic ticket for something that happened a year ago?   Five years ago?   Twenty years ago?   NOW we make it policy to report and DEAL with the offense NOW, not (maybe) later, if we have to...

    I took French in high school, failed miserably at it (German became my second language, later). Our French/Spanish teacher was a younger man, maybe mid twenties back then.  Only about ten years ago, here's a newspaper  article about a man who was arrested for umpteen sexual assaults, etc. , picture, name, IT"S MY FRENCH TEACHER FROM THIRTY PLUS YEARS AGO....  Did things happen back then?  I don't know.  But (to use Yoda language) caught up to him, he was.  

    If only....


    While I agree that Scouting as we knew it is likely done, I am not thankful for that condition.  I also disagree with the societal trend to blame BSA for past ills rather than the miscreants themselves.  Lawyers went after BSA because it had resources that they could reach easily:  land.  Going after the actual perpetrators would have been fruitless from the lawyers' point of view because many of them are dead or don't have significant resources.

    Remember, the secret files that were used to prove the case against BSA were secret largely because BSA couldn't prove criminal charges against the men in question.  Even openly questioning them would have exposed BSA to liability for defaming the men in question.

    In my opinion, these lawsuits and the resulting impacts are the culmination of a decades long attack on Scouting as one of the pillars of traditional American society.  The activists used vile deeds by a very small minority of people to attack and undermine the entire organization -- and then not only refuse to condemn that minority but encourage the spread of those very actions.  Just look at their current attempts to change terminology from "pedophiles" to "minor-attracted persons".

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  12. On 11/1/2022 at 3:25 AM, SiouxRanger said:

    I know many folks who have turned to making their contributions to the Movement by making gifts in kind, instead of cash, and one person who changed their entire estate plan to the tune of about a million, and another of $750,000.

    Councils do not see the folks whose contributions are changed from Boy Scouts to other charities.  The councils never knew of the potential bequests, and never hear that the BSA has been dropped as a beneficiary.

    Immeasurable Phantom Losses.

    Two councils were significant beneficiaries in my will before I retired from Scouting, the council I grew up in as a youth and the council I spent the bulk of my time working with as an adult.  I served on the Shooting Sports Committee as well as being an ASM in my troop and teaching at UoS.

    When I retired from Scouting because I didn't like the direction the program was heading, I changed my will.  Those bequests are now directed toward other organizations I trust.


    On 11/1/2022 at 6:57 AM, Eagle94-A1 said:

    As for donations of any kind, I do not know anyone at the unit level who is contributing to FOS. Many units no longer buy supplies from the local council, instead going to two nearby, and closer, out of council stores.

    Understatement. I know two large contributors who have stopped supporting Scouting altogether, and I would not doubt changed their wills. Another donor is only making contributions to a specific event. His goal is to cut registration so that as many Scouts can go to it as possible.

    I made some significant donations to the local camp and paid for some overdue maintenance at the council HQ.  I did it that way because 1) I didn't want National taxing the council for my donations and 2) I wanted to know exactly what my donations went towards.  Generally, I would ask the camp director or the SE what one item fell below their budget cut line that they wished they'd had funds for and then I'd pay for the item directly.

    When we had the national ammunition shortfall (before I'd retired from Scouting) and it looked like we might have to cancel shooting sports for the summer, the NRA worked out a special deal to get a production run of .22 LR ammunition for a special price.  The Shooting Sports Committee chair and I approached the new Camp Director and told him how much ammunition he needed for the summer, what the costs would be, and what he should do to make the program not only pay for itself but help subsidize some of the other activities.

    I then made him an offer:  since I only saw ammunition prices increasing from there and the prospect of future shortages arising, I said I would pay for an additional year's worth of ammunition but it needed to be maintained as a rotating stockpile, i.e., he needed to continue to order ammunition to replenish the store so they wouldn't have to worry about national shortfalls again.  He accepted the deal gratefully and we got the ammo in to keep the program on track for that summer and had a hedge for the future.

    I think the year after when we got a new SE, he refused to order replenishment ammunition, using up the stockpile I'd bought for him so that he made the camp financials look better that summer and paid for other programs that were incurring losses.  At that point, I lost faith in the new SE and the council and bade my farewells.

    TL;DR:  Council staff looked at their short term numbers and lost a long-term contributor of time, energy, AND funds.

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  13. On 2/27/2023 at 3:48 PM, 5thGenTexan said:

    SM took IOLS and Cub Specific Training in 2016.  Absolutely nothing since then other than YPT.  Same SM that has not had a real PLC since he started a year ago.  Also lets us know when and where campouts will be, sometimes two days before the event.  He NEEDS the training.

    Committee members just havent done it and they dont have years and years of experience.  Some are the same that suggested to me and another leader we just plan the meetings for the Scouts because kids cant pay that much attention and they want to play.

    For what it's worth, the training may tell him that he should hold PLCs at least monthly and provide adequate notice of the dates and locations for campouts but it's the committee that needs to hold him accountable and complain that he doesn't.

    If I were the CC or COR, I'd insist on having a committee meeting soon to discuss the whys and wherefores of training and how the unit should function in terms of timely notifications and growing the Scouts by making the senior Scouts take some responsibility for their program.  That can't simply be dumped on them, the SM or an ASM has to teach them how to do this in a PLC.  We used to have an annual shut-in PLC in the winter specifically to teach our senior Scouts how to plan and then start to make the annual plan.

  14. On 5/28/2021 at 2:58 PM, CynicalScouter said:

    During today's Fireside chat on "Governance" former CEO head honcho Bill Gates said that "LCs need BSA National. Without BSA National, there are no LCs. We are in this together." I wish, just wish, I could have seen the looks on some Council Key-3 faces. I'm sure there was a lot of teeth grinding.

    Did you mean Robert Gates?  He was a terrible DCI, worse SECDEF, and absolutely horrible President of Scouting.  I'm not surprised he delivered this bit of shinola.  Technically, he may be correct in that National owns the intellectual property of handbooks, uniforms, symbols, etc. and probably the loyalty of most of the SEs but it sure would be heartening for some of the LC boards to at least investigate their options in adhering to Scouting's ultimate purpose by separating from the disastrous decisions that have been coming out of Irving, TX for the past decade or two.  My impression is that the National Board is a paragon of incestuous relationships and will be dragged kicking and screaming into any kind of reform.

  15. When I first learned about the Ineligible Volunteer Files in the 1990s, I was given to understand that the cases of perversion were ones that Scouting couldn't prove (i.e., didn't go to trial) but that the local councils wanted to track to keep the alleged predator away from the boys.  Cases that could be proven were supposedly referred to law enforcement.

    I understand that some people, wanting to avoid negative publicity, may have used the files as an alternative to pursuing prosecution.  That was clearly wrong but it still hurts my head that something that was created as a tool for preventing sexual abuse is being used as evidence that it was being allowed.  The only people coming out of this in a better condition are the lawyers like Kosnoff.

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  16. I guess I've got a little different perspective. I saw little value in OA when I was a Scout in the late 70s/early 80s (Aloha Council). OA elections seemed to be a longevity or popularity award, in part because the new Scouts really didn't know who to vote for. The "Arrowmen" I saw were not necessarily the best at Scoutcraft and it was never the "Special Forces" of Scouting from what I could see. For that reason, I pulled my name from consideration as a Scout because I didn't want to take votes away from someone who did want to join the Lodge (I still seemed to get write-ins anyway).

    I agreed to have my name submitted for OA as an adult and went through Ordeal because the Lodge at Pikes Peak Council seemed different, more akin to what OA was supposed to be. Never went past that in part because I never got the handbook and in part because I was too busy to bother with tests just to get a different sash -- but then, I judge people by what they do, not what they wear or have on their walls.

    I supported OA at Pikes Peak and the other councils I went to and would never have refused to hold an election. Like most other things, you can get from OA only as much as you put into it. OTOH, I completely understand why some Scouts don't wish to join it.

  17. Bear in mind that many of the individuals causing the most harm and responsible for the most damage are people who will actively evade the protections put in place: in the past, now, and in the future.

    The US Department of Defense and intelligence community spend tens of millions of dollars per year to find and protect against bad actors and they still have ongoing problems.  The FAA and NTSB have extensive programs for protecting air travel against defects in design, manufacturing, and maintenance but none of their programs will do anything against the pilot who intentionally dives the aircraft into the ground (rare but it happens) or who is inadequately trained/experienced for his/her flight (not as rare).  Holding BSA or any other volunteer organization to a standard that assumes liability for not detecting and protecting against these bad actors is simply unrealistic.

    What BSA and other organizations can do is protect the youth against the unintentional/uninformed/insensitive actions -- similar to how DoD and the IC protect against inadvertent disclosures or the FAA may publish an Airworthiness Directive after an accident investigation.

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  18. On 4/22/2021 at 4:13 PM, Owls_are_cool said:

    If the end result is innocent scouts and scouters forced to pay into a victim fund to keep the program running for their scouts, my first reaction is not to complain. We'll move to another organization or quit scouting. Fixing one wrong with another wrong might be legal, but there is a point where scouts will not see the value in the program and cut their losses. 

    I don't blame you at all but when you do move, you will be accomplishing exactly what the individuals and organizations who've been trying to destroy Scouting for decades want.  Make no mistake -- some parties in these lawsuits are in it for justice, some are in it for revenge, some are in it for the money, and some are in it simply to destroy a pillar of traditional American culture and society.  That last segment has been trying to destroy churches, Scouting, the military, law enforcement, etc. for decades and use any convenient avenue they can find.  This doesn't diminish the very real hurt suffered in some of these cases but the general public really needs to keep the broader perspective of what's good for our society in the long run.

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  19. 5 minutes ago, Eagle1993 said:

    When did you quit?  I'm talking now, not 2014 and prior.  I would agree that during Dale it probably got rough.

    My ASM was clear when we discussed this recently .. it helps.  He has talked with Harvard, Yale interviewers ... it helps.  Notre Dame ... helps.  We have had Eagle Scouts do well at Ivy through mid tier colleges.  We have examples.  That said, it won't help if you can't answer questions.  He has said it show perseverance and achievement of a goal. 

    I think parents make the mistake thinking their son/daughter just needs to get Eagle Scout on the resume and they're golden.  If they go to an Eagle mill, I don't see the benefit.  (Yeah, its on the resume, but did they really learn anything?) Now, if while earning Eagle, your son/daughter got over a fear, learned new skills, took on a role they wouldn't have been comfortable with, lead a team, failed, succeeded, etc. ... that is the real value.  Then they  take that value and explain it during an interview and its a winner.  The rank on the app is really just a minor part of the story .. the value is what they did to earn that rank.

    I resigned from the Alumni Interview program in 2018, maybe 2017, due to increasingly regressive "woke" statements from the university in general and the Admissions Office in particular.  I didn't just talk with interviewers, I was an interviewer and listened to the Admissions Office and looked at the matriculation rates of the applicants I personally interviewed.

    If youth are looking at the program as I did, as a path to gaining experiences, skills, and self-confidence, they should by all means continue with it or whatever program succeeds it.  My point is that the value of the Eagle brand has -- in my experience -- diminished with elite universities and corporations.

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  20. 58 minutes ago, Eagle1993 said:

    I have a ASM who interviews for a top 10 school and talks with the interviewers from Harvard, Yale, etc.  Eagle Scout is a BENEFIT.  He is nudging his sons to get there as well.  It can vary how much of a benefit based on the interviewer, but it is a benefit.

    1 hour ago, Eagle1993 said:

    One my my ASMs is an interviewer for an elite college (top 5 school for business, journalism, etc.) top 10 overall.  Eagle Scout is a benefit on applications.  How much of a benefit probably depends on who interviews you.  I went to a state school, but apparently, elite colleges have one of their alumni interview you and they then tell the college what they think.   I have never heard or seen any evidence it is a strike against applicants.


    58 minutes ago, Eagle1993 said:

    I have a ASM who interviews for a top 10 school and talks with the interviewers from Harvard, Yale, etc.  Eagle Scout is a BENEFIT.  He is nudging his sons to get there as well.  It can vary how much of a benefit based on the interviewer, but it is a benefit.


    1 hour ago, MisterH said:

    I've spent enough time interacting with academia over the past 20 years to notice this, too. IMO most colleges view "Eagle Scout" as just another civic-oriented extra-curricular activity, but I've met more than a few professors who dismissed the Boy Scouts as "a right-wing, paramilitary hate group", particularly prior to 2014 when the BSA started lifting their official bans on homosexuality.


    I was an interviewer for an Ivy League university.  From listening to the PC speak from the Admissions Office (not just professors who aren't part of the admissions process) to looking at the matriculation rate of applicants I interviewed, I'm pretty confident that Eagle rank is no longer a benefit and may in fact be a detriment in applying to these self-ascribed elite universities.  It's one of the reasons I quit being an alumni interviewer.

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  21. On 3/12/2021 at 6:31 PM, MattR said:

    Besides, I think the eagle brand is taking a huge hit - what's it going to be worth if you're afraid to bring it up?

    IMO, the Eagle brand took a huge hit a long time ago for a variety of reasons.  PC culture in elite colleges appeared to be using it as a strike against instead of for the applicants.  Standards seemed to be lowered in merit badges, projects, etc. in order to increase the success rate.

    I personally would still be inclined to give an Eagle Scout the chance to prove him/herself to me even with otherwise marginal qualifications but that's just me and it's honestly a bit of sentiment.

    Outside forces have been attacking and attempting to dismember Scouting for their own reasons but I felt like National was diminishing the program for many years.

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  22. On 3/9/2021 at 10:38 AM, MattR said:

    Unfortunately, most councils are broke and all they see is money. That seems to be the root of all the problems.

    At least the councils have the excuse of being broke.  I've long had the opinion that the only thing National sees is money, hence needless changes like uniform changes that seem designed to just make boys spend money (like changing green to red), program changes that didn't improve the programs but made boys and units have to buy new MB pamphlets or fill out more paperwork (but hey, someone's ego got the boost of making major changes).

    Robert Gates showed just what he thought about local unit or even council autonomy when he decided to change membership rules without any discussion and in direct violation of what National had told the councils just a year before.

    I keep monitoring this forum because I hope I'm wrong and Scouting will rise again but I fear the combination of the hate-mongers who've been targeting Scouting for decades and the ineptitude and corruption at National may be the last hurdle.

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  23. On 3/8/2021 at 2:52 PM, yknot said:

    True. But that is ancient history. Some version of two deep has been around since the 1980s. It predates me.

    FWIW, two deep was not required in the late 70s/early 80s when I was a Scout.  Our troop went to summer camp with just one adult, the SM, at check in and in fact the SM was off-camp most of the week.  We (the boys) in fact knew that was illicit but wouldn't have been able to go to camp had we not participated in the scheme because we had no other options.  No other adult signed up to go with us and the SM (who didn't even have a boy in the troop) had a shop to run.  The rules in the Aloha Council at the time required one adult, period.

    It absolutely was a thing by the time I joined a troop as an ASM in 1988 and the troop I joined was greatly relieved I was able to go to summer camp as the second adult.

    The idea that 20% of volunteers were non-compliant seems a bit exaggerated unless it includes new volunteers who haven't got around to it yet and veteran volunteers whose training expires before they retake it.  We absolutely had to have 100% compliance with anyone registered at recharter (when I was still active with Scouting).

    All of this disregards the fact that predators -- like most criminals -- don't obey the rules.  The fact that we have any significant number of cases since 1990 demonstrates something that should be intuitively obvious.  I regarded YPT and the G2SS as tools to help me -- the innocent volunteer -- steer clear of situations that could be litigious.  In today's age, that ought to be sufficient incentive for volunteers to take the training and abide by the guidelines.

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