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Everything posted by qwazse

  1. qwazse

    Brimmed Hat

    One of our district scouters wears them. Not sure if he’s had the same one all these years.
  2. Well, since we have it on report that there is ZERO - not even a shred of - supremacy at play, it must be tongue-in-cheek. That cafe that I mentioned is in a section of town well worth visiting, but one some of my scouts’ parents would never allow their boys to visit. As far as I can tell, the most extreme of these boys are not overt aspiring Klansmen, like some of my high school classmates were. But they would cringe if they are offered an opportunity to read Dr. King’s speech on January 18th. I honestly don’t care about anybody’s acronym or catch phrase. I just want the boys in my community to be brave enough to walk a few miles into a predominantly non-white neighborhood and have a decent bowl of gumbo. I want them to be mentally fit enough to learn whatever skill they desire from caring adults of any ethnic origin. And, I wouldn’t be bothered if they were kind enough to uplift someone of a race or creed other than theirs in the process. So, I’m not fretting the details. If it looks like this MB will do that, I’ll get behind it. If it wrinkles, there’s so much more to scouting than earning Eagle.
  3. Is there a reason for resurrecting this particular thread on the subject?
  4. Not coming back? I can tell my little supremacists that they don’t have to earn the badge, stop chasing bling, and look at the trail map and plan our next hike ... preferably to a cafe I know that serves the best gumbo in town.
  5. Definitely regional. Like most things with advancement, some councils set a particular tone, and eventually it was echoed nation-wide, until it was codified. (Which directly violates my Rule #1: Don't ask for a rule. You'll live to regret it.) I personally don't see the need for a special designation. There aren't going to be a lot of adults who do go all the way to Eagle, which is already a "silver" award. They just get to be called Eagle Scouts like the rest of us. But, more to the point, we would strongly encourage everyone to be 1st Class Scouts. The patch would synchronize with the concept. Most every adult would make an effort to at least nail that. And yes, it's a shame BSA has oversold Eagle almost to the exclusion of this "middle" rank. One side effect: there might be fewer youth who make Eagle because, lacking a deadline, the natural procrastinators will keep doing what they do. However, I think youth who see new adults (their moms and dads, even) struggling to master 1st Class skills will be inspired. My experience is with renewing BSA Guard, it just gets harder to knock out those sprints every three years, and one particular year I came back defeated a couple of days in a row. That third day, the few scouts from my troop in the aquatics area cheered me on when I finally nailed it.
  6. I haven't nailed down the journal or volume, but here we discussed it four years ago: And landed on a 1964/65 cut-off.
  7. Thanks. You need to, however, reference oft-forgot starting points for each policy, just like you did when you referenced the improved scouting program. Hunt down the years for: The declaration of religious principle. The policy on homosexual adults (specifically, scoutmasters). The (different) policy on homosexual youth. The first SM who wanted to confer Eagle Scout to a female. The important thing to note here, is that these were not generated in a vacuum. Somebody in one part of the country didn't like how somebody in another part of the country was proceeding, and the picked BSA for a cudgel.
  8. Dude, read the "Scouts in Action" pieces in Boy's Life. Those are just random samples from the numerous awards of merit because scouts retained their skills well enough to save someone's life. It's not about the scout forestalling his/her death (although that effect is possible), it's about him/her forestalling our death from a panoply of causes ... drownings, burns, infections from knife wounds, insect-borne parasites, venomous bites, food-borne illness, mishandled firearms. @yknot, there's an article in either Scouting or Boys Life sometime in the 60's that codified the change in policy. We referenced it her once-upon-a-topic. If I stumble across it, I'll let you know.
  9. @ParkMan why would I start a 15 year old at Star who hasn’t mastered 1st Class? If a 12 year old masters 1st Class, why withhold work on Star? But this is the critical distinction — the switch, if you will — that distinguishes BSA’s ascending first 6 decades from the declining latter 6: For a scout, what is rank (or as GBB put it in his handbook, a progress award)? a set of skills that enables one to overcome the challenges of life and even forestall death, no matter when and at what station one masters those skills. a developmental track for teens and pre-teens to complement what they are not getting taught in school? If the former, then it might be important for an ASM or SM age 19 or 59 to secure that foundation. If the latter, then that person-of-a-certain-age should leave the finger paints on grandma’s fridge and go tag a trestle. My point is, the more we insist that the trail to Eagle is a “youth thing”, the more we will delude ourselves by creating requirements for the sake of youth development (EDGE, bean counting nights and service hours, bookwork MBs etc ...) that youth will more than happily abandon in order to fulfill a vision of the pinnacle scouting experience of hiking and camping independently with your mates. I see no point in extending the age limit for that youth/adult boundary. Youth may be PLs etc..; adults, SMs etc ... there is something to be said for years of life lived defining your roles. And we now know that power relationships conferred by age can be greatly abused. So on that level, we are stuck with what we have.
  10. Of course. When, as I mentioned earlier, scouting is turned into child’s play rather than being recognized as a challenge — even for most adults — then when one becomes an adult one stops “play scouting” and leaves the BSA for real adventure. The age that one makes that transition has been pushed younger, 14 year olds are patrolling the land happily without the auspices of BSA. Secondly, if while growing up, you abandoned religion, you were officially unwelcome in BSA. Or, if you found yourself to be homosexual adult, you were officially unwelcome. Then, we were told to unwelcome homosexual youth. That restrictive sexual ethic attracted some adults, but put off others. Hewing to a more permissive sexual ethic has not reversed that.
  11. @gpurlee, have you read Rothschild’s piece on Lowe and (indirectly) West and the proprietorship of “scout”? It does a lot to set the stage for some of the 21st century struggles. Although, I think there were two related shifts starting in the 60s that also have a cumulative impact on where we are today: The ageist policy restricting rank advancement to under age 18 because “it’s a boys award.” The rise of “bookwork” badges to the required list for Eagle and the removal of observe/report badges, like Bird Study, from that list. The former shift basically assumes that green leaders would be better served through training provided by their councils instead of their units. It also removed an incentive for star and life scouts to serving as an SM/ASM in a troop to complete their rank advancement. The latter shift assumed that BSA would make up for something that’s not being taught in schools (e.g. citizenship, family life) ... giving the impression that it could be used as an agent of cultural change. Interestingly, things like wildlife observation are the only practical way that a person can witness global warming without being dependent on media. In any case, scouting was seen as a way to push back against secularism and ultimately to promote a restrictive sexual ethic.
  12. Fred, it’s the small troop problem. Either, the patrol runs its course and then disbands. Or, it relocates under a CO that will continue to promote it well beyond the founders’ tenure.
  13. How many youth and young adults have you worked with?
  14. Taken to its extreme, it will not on disassemble youth organizations, but the institution of family itself.
  15. More importantly, since this initiative is overtly a response to BLM, youth membership quotas do not directly address misplaced attitudes of supremacy in America’s youth. To do that, one should provide youth with mentors from minorities and the opposite sex. Not because someone from that group would be particularly well versed in the subject. (They may not even hew to the expected rhetoric.) Rather, by having youth from majorities mentored on occasion by people of integrity from minority groups, those youth gain memories of positive interactions that may offset seeds of bias that would otherwise be planted.
  16. (My apologies to readers for the cross-post.) None of these are changes that will refocus councils and the communities in them toward better scouting. The first flaw of modern councils is that they are identified as an administrative unit of BSA, not an integral part of any community within their bounds. To correct this, a roll back is needed: the council shoulder patch should be a red strip with white lettering. the council name should be that of the largest city in its area. Laurel Highlands would be renamed Pittsburgh council. If folks in Davis, WV are bothered about being in Pittsburgh council, they can mobilize their community and form a self-sustaining council. I made a similar proposal here in the Establish minimum standards thread. There, I allowed that patches with flags/coats of arms could go accompany the council strip. Not sure if that adds clutter. But, the point is that councils need to be anchored to communities to flourish.
  17. Oops. I meant to reply in @CynicalScouter's more recent topic. I'll re-reply there. I had already made a similar comment in this thread earlier. I'll reference it in the other topic.
  18. None of these are changes that will refocus councils and the communities in them toward better scouting. The first flaw of modern councils is that they are identified as an administrative unit of BSA, not an integral part of any community within their bounds. To correct this, a roll back is needed: the council shoulder patch should be a red strip with white lettering. the council name should be that of the largest city in its area. Laurel Highlands would be renamed Pittsburgh council. If folks in Davis, WV are bothered about being in Pittsburgh council, they can mobilize their community and form a self-sustaining council.
  19. Camp Conestoga of Westmoreland-Fayette council provided an excellent week of well-staffed camp. I'd like to say "Wish you were here." But, the fact is that it is in the public's interest that local camps open throughout the country with layered non-pharmaceutical interventions. (Some of those layers ain't cheap. The staff did some serious sterilizing of shower houses.) Some campers came from a long ways away to attend our week (demand outstripped supply). That comes with its own risks. The Georgia study has made me look more askew at cabins than I ever have before. Even cabins with a small number of residents saw transmissions. But, there was a lot going on in the state at large that increased the likelihood of childhood transmission. A comparison group of tent camps would have been interesting. Tents have more air circulation than cabins ... but they also have fewer windows. Which means that kids aren't spending as much time in them. During slack time our scouts were as much, if not more. around a campfire, at their patrol tables, or in their hammocks than in their tents.
  20. From current cub-specific requirements (https://i9peu1ikn3a16vg4e45rqi17-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/510-322_WEB.pdf😞 Later in the document it makes clear that a range is to be opened by a "qualified BSA-certified range master." There's probably fine print elsewhere about what would lead BSA to certify that person, but the cub-specific document makes clear that it would be only one person.
  21. LoL, my buddy (along with four generations of clinical epidemiologists/virologists) has trained is whole life for this current train wreck. Most of that was distance communications — elevated to high priority in the Bush era. About a year ago, my family played the cooperative board game, Pandemic. There’s an online version these days. Not sure if it’s a little too high-level of a simulation for scouts, but I recall thinking as we played it, “These engineers have no idea how close to reality this hits home.”
  22. For “why”, you need to look at the source ... https://scoutingwire.org/bsas-commitment-to-act-against-racial-injustice/, specifically, the signatories. This bypasses the usual MB process and comes from the top down. The CEO’s bio https://blog.scoutingmagazine.org/2020/01/28/getting-to-know-roger-c-mosby-the-new-president-and-ceo-of-the-boy-scouts-of-america/ explains: In the past decade, HR folks have benefited greatly from mandatory D&I. It stands to reason that if you put a person with that background at the top of your organization, this is the solution he will push down to every level he can.
  23. Anybody have a recipe for camp-made tortilla chips? I’ve made some at home from tortillas.
  24. Slip it behind the wedding picture!
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