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Rick_in_CA

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Rick_in_CA last won the day on November 28 2019

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About Rick_in_CA

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  1. This is a great story from Bryan on Scouting. Shows what "Be Prepared" is about. It's not just having a first aid kit, not just even having the first aid skills that go with it, but it also having the wherewithal and confidence to not panic and act, even lead in a situation like this. Bravo to this scout and those that helped her become this wonderful young lady. https://blog.scoutingmagazine.org/2020/07/15/unsung-hero-she-rescued-a-fellow-hiker-during-a-family-vacation/
  2. I don't think this has anything to do with how Boy Scouts are viewed specifically, but how young people are viewed in general. You are correct, liability is a big part of it, but so is the extension of childhood. For too many people, "young adult" no longer referrers to 14,15, 16 year olds, but to 18, 19, 20 year olds. How many 13 year olds get gigs as babysitters now days? How many 13 year olds can't be left home alone without a babysitter themselves? How long before 18, 19 and 20 year olds are going to need "adult supervision"?
  3. To many people don't want to hear about "innocent" in situations like this. The issues around child safety (not just in the Scouting context) in our society are taking on the characteristics of a moral panic (just look at the craziness about leaving children in cars). So if this turns out to be a false accusation or some sort of miss understanding, it probably won't make the news (since news outlets are reluctant to report stories that will be unpopular with their readers or viewers). Even if it is reported, people won't internalize it. So the damage to Scouting's reputation is done regardless of the actual outcome. Look at some of the comments on this forum and elsewhere that basically take it as a given that the BSA was systematically negligent in the past with regards to child abuse issues. Why does this idea exist? I'm not sure, but I don't think it's a fair characterization. The reality is when compared with almost every other youth organization of the time, the BSA was ahead of the game almost it's whole history. The very existence of the "perversion files" is because the BSA was trying to deal with an issue that almost everyone else (4H, FFA, YMCA, etc) ignored. But it's the existence of those files that is one of the main reasons the BSA is getting hammered by lawsuits and 4H is not. Could the BSA have done better? Of course. But they were doing better than almost everyone else at the time. But that isn't the perception.
  4. The thing is we really don't know any of the details - we don't know the real circumstances of the events, or even what is being alleged. While it is likely that there were YPT failures, we don't know if there were any. The YPT rules while a significant barrier to abuse, they can't prevent all abuse. The reality is we really have no idea what happened if anything.
  5. The Civil War was fought over secession, the south the secure it, the north to prevent it. Secession however, was all about preserving slavery. How do we know? Because the south said it was. They published articles saying it. State legislators passed declarations saying it. The first states to secede sent representatives to other slave states telling why they should also secede. Those representatives said things like: "Georgia seceded for one reason, and one reason only. The preservation of slavery!" (can be found in the minutes of the Virginia convention where they were discussing secession. See the University of Virginia web site). The idea that the Civil War wasn't about slavery is revisionist claptrap, created by the south many decades after the war to try and "redeem" the "cause".
  6. I agree with you. It's all about context, and there is too much ignoring of context and the actual history around things. History is seldom black and white. Our historical heroes and villains were real people with all the complexity that brings, not cartoon characters. But context and nuance is hard, and cartoons are easy.
  7. Seriously? No Neil Armstrong? No Eisenhower? Really? Things may be a bit over sensitive today, but it's not even close to that. I am fine with renaming a council that was named after a traitor to our republic that was fighting to preserve slavery. (That should get things rolling... ).
  8. As for PR, I know many of the people on this board has seen it, but perhaps many of you haven't. This is from Scout South Africa, and this is that kind of advertising that the BSA needs.
  9. One problem with all this background checking is that many of these checks are done on the cheap. I have a friend that was given a copy of his background check when he started a new job. There wasn't anything bad in the check, but it clearly wasn't him (he never lived in Nevada for example, but he did live in Boston for years which wasn't mentioned) even though his name was on it. That is why most states require potential employers to provide a copy of any background check too you so you can check it for errors. I have another friend that used to carry a laminated letter from the local sheriff because he was repeatedly accosted by bounty hunters. He had the same name and DOB as a skipped felon from another state. The letter explained that he wasn't the individual they were looking for. He had a couple of very scary encounters with a few armed clowns, including a night spent in jail because one of the clowns refused to call the phone number on the letter because "he knows that trick!".
  10. It turns out navigating through the environment changes the brain, and depending on GPS changes it in different ways (parts shrink). https://www.nature.com/articles/ncomms14652
  11. Actually it does. Adults change the dynamics, no mater how quiet they are. Which is why the old BSA requirements and the modern Duke of Edinburgh Award require the trek be without adults.
  12. But sometimes the correct thing to do is go with the stranger - the child might be in a dangerous area or situation. The reality is that the classic kid snatched off the street by a pervert is really rare (some thing like 100 a year in the US. Most kidnappings of children are by family members involved in custody disputes). Kids are much more likely to be abused or killed by their parents or other relatives, hurt in car accidents, or even to suffer from a heart attack than becoming the next Elizabeth Smart. So why do we spend so much time and energy "teaching" kids about it (ok - because parents have a completely overblown fear about it)? Aren't we giving them an overblown sense of danger? There are unfortunately too many examples of fear of strangers leading to poor or even tragic results. Kids not going for help in emergencies or when they were in trouble because that would require talking to strangers. What young kids should be taught is, when they need help, go to the first person you see and ask for help. As I wrote earlier, it's all about context. We want to give our kids useful tools to function in a world that isn't always safe, without instilling unreasonable fears that will handicap them. Not always easy to do.
  13. Wow. I don't really know what to say about this. I agree with your point about more simulated real-world exercises, but practicing for such an incredibly rare occurrence such as stranger kidnapping? The amount of fear of strangers that is drilled into kids now days is not healthy. They are much more likely to need the help of a stranger than to be ever threatened by one. So how to do we teach them appropriate caution with strangers without instilling in them a constant fear? If it was my kids that and an event like that was scheduled, I think I wouldn't let them go (of course, context is everything).
  14. It can be found here: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2019-04-17/boy-scouts-are-just-scouts-now-and-that-s-making-girl-scouts-mad And I agree, it's a really good article.
  15. A good point. One of the issues I see with many scouts (and non-scouts) is that they have no idea of their home surroundings (the have no mental map). They have no idea which way is north ("try the north side of the building." "Huh, which way is that?"), they can't navigate on their own from their school (or soccer practice, scout meeting) to their home, even when it's not very far (such as a 20 minute walk). They have no idea of where things are in relation to each other ("can you point toward the general direction of your house from here?"). And unfortunately, the same can often be said of their parents. And most of this is because of overuse of GPS (I have one friend that automatically uses the car GPS to basically go everywhere. His mental map has deteriorated a lot since we were kids. He often has no idea where he is. If the GPS tells him to go in the wrong direction, I don't think he would be able to tell.) - and the fact that these kids are driven everywhere by their parents, so they don't have a chance to learn a mental map (when I was a kid, and in a car, I was looking out the windows watching, subconsciously learning the route. Now kids have their face buried in some electronic device instead). Being able to navigate from places we commonly go (school, church, meetings, best friends house, etc.) to home, grandma's house, Dad's work, etc. is an important survival skill. All kids should be able to navigate (walk, bike, give directions to a driver) these common routes in an emergency - and without access to electronic devices or even a map. They should KNOW it. It's right up there with knowing Mom and Dad's names, home phone number, address, etc. I wish there was a greater emphases placed on learning these important skills.
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