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tortdog

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About tortdog

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    Houston
  1. tortdog

    Burning MatchLight and Human Waste

    Alright. I'm convinced on the burning of waste. Let me ask, though. Do you think it's safe to bury human waste on a barrier island? I'm worried about shifting sand (though you could dig down a ways at the top of the island I suppose). Also, any other councils allow charcoal fluid? We always assumed it was off limits.
  2. tortdog

    Burning MatchLight and Human Waste

    >Charcoal lighter is not classified as liquid fuel You know, that makes sense becaues the GSS specifically mentions the proper storage of charcoal fuel. Why would the GSS address the storage of it if it was not permitted at all? It's like addressing how to safely store fireworks, when fireworks are prohibited outright.
  3. Kind of two parts. The GSS states that we cannot use liquid fuel to start fires. No brainer. But what about MatchLight? It's charcoal with liquid fuel applied in the factory. Is that okay? If that's okay, can you make your own at home, bag up the charcoal and use that at a BSA activity? Leave No Trace states that you can burn human waste as an alternative to catholes. What if you used some liquid fuel and mixed it with the waste (like the Army does), in essence making "MatchLight" and then burn the resulting product? If you can't do the last one (or two), then what about starter sticks that people use. It's not liquid fuel itself, but the fuel (wood, waste, whatever) has been impregnated/treated with some form of superior starter (usually liquid fuel)? Thoughts?
  4. tortdog

    ACLU to BSA: Heads We Win - Tails You Lose

    The interpretation you use occurred in 1947 (150 years after the founders wrote the amendment), and it was a 5-4 decision (meaning 4 justices disagreed with it). Fact is, the interpretation of the 1st Amendment that YOU rely on is divisive, controversial and been held for only about 50 years of the 200 year history of the union. I agrue my interpretation is correct because it is the one espoused by the founding fathers. Let me ask you this. If the founding fathers believed the position espoused in 1946, then why did they permit government funds to be given to churches and commence with prayer in Congress? If their position is no longer valid because things have changed, when did the People amend the Constitution to reflect it (or was it merely the fact that 5 unelected judges agreed to make it so)?
  5. tortdog

    D&D and scouts.

    >These topics aren't outdoor skills and they don't have merit badges, but they are what boys are interested in. Sounds to me like yall might be interested in Varsity or Crew, where it was created around specialized programs. I did not know that the troops were geared for this. I am not sure the troop should start concentrating on activities that do not help in advancement.
  6. tortdog

    ACLU to BSA: Heads We Win - Tails You Lose

    Hunt. Reasonable people can disagree. Sure, if a public entity sponsors a racist organization, I concur that that entity is violating our constitutional prohibition against racial discrimination. However, there is no constitutional provision that prevents a public entity from supporting religion IN GENERAL. There is a prohibition from Congress (and I'll expand that to the states) from ESTABLISHING a religion. When a school sponsors a Cub Scout unit (and solely in connection with the religion argument you make), it allows ANY person who promises to do his duty to a supreme being, however that person understands that supreme being to be, to become a member. The school doesn't tell the child that he has to be Catholic, Muslim, Jewish...or even that the child has to worship only one god even. It only stands by and says: Do you swear to do your duty to your god? Period. How is THAT establishing a religion? It is recognition that a person can have religious beliefs, but not the establishment of a religion. If we want to debate and amend our Constitution to prohibit any form of government interplay with organizations that espouse a belief in God, then fine - let's do the debate. However, I don't think that you'll find 2/3s of the House/Senate that will agree with that proposition. And if 2/3s of the House/Senate would not agree then what makes you think that it's in the Constitution at all?
  7. tortdog

    Youth Protection in Latrines

    Ya know...I must need YP again. I honestly would not give it a second thought to be in a public restroom with a scout. The restroom is open to the public. Anyone can go in. I'm in and out of there as fast as I can (never really liked public restrooms though obviously it's a necessity). Would Scout leaders also not enter a public restroom when there is a Scout inside?
  8. tortdog

    Eventual Co-Ed Scouting

    >then also the wives might start getting the credit for the support they give the husbands with the boys. In my experience, the moms get most of the credit.
  9. tortdog

    ACLU to BSA: Heads We Win - Tails You Lose

    If the ACLU were committed to civil rights, it would consider fighting for the 2nd Amendment (which right to bear arms some of the founding fathers considered the most important right). The ACLU would also attack the religous groups that have leases from San Diego (but it does not). It's about money; Cash on the barrelhead; Money talks. It's about pleasing its consituents: a bunch of people who are upset that the Supreme Court didn't write in a right to prevent groups from freely associating and refusing entry to gays. >"Boy Scouts of America is a religious organization, association or society, or nonprofit institution or organization operated, supervised or controlled by or in conjunction with religious organizations, associations or societies within the meaning of the Kansas Act Against Discrimination, expressly permitted by the Act to limit the occupancy of its real property, which it owns or operates for other than a commercial purpose, to persons who believe in God or to give preference to persons who believe in God." The reason the BSA relied on this provision was Kansas only allowed certain groups to discriminate based on sexual orientation. The BSA looked at the law and...wa-lah...the legislators said that "any religious organization, association or society, or nonprofit institution or organization operated, supervised or controlled by or in conjunction with religious organizations, associations or societies" can discriminate. Period. The BSA doesn't have to be a religious organization. It only has to be a nonprofit institution or organization (it is) that operates "in conjunction with religious organizations" (it does). Therefore, the BSA wins. It really is that simple.
  10. tortdog

    D&D and scouts.

    I suppose I speak only from my experience. As a Scout, there were plenty of things to do at camp other than D&D. I always brought home 4-5 merit badges (and worked my butt off for them). When I wasn't working on the merit badges (including after the classes for environmental sciense, sailing, rifle and archery as examples), I was doing SOMETHING outside. I worked on crafts from the Scout Shop. We played outdoor games. We expored. We built pioneering projects, but I did NOT spend the time playing games I could easily be doing at home. The Scout camp experience was totally different from my normal walk at home. That is what brings me the memories I cherish. I think it's unfair to Scouts to not give them the opportunity to have Scout camp be something other than what they are used to back home. Maybe some of the boys won't "get it" or "appreciate it", but when they grow up they will. And if the boys are fighting the leaders, then we aren't doing our jobs. Once I had earned most of the merit badges at camp, I moved on and did other more challenging things through the high adventure program. And, frankly, during the high adventure the last thing I would have been tugging along is extra weight. Our high adventure outings were hard...requiring endurance and man if those weren't life changing events. I didn't always appreciate it at the time, but I certainly do now (as do my friends growing up with me). My desire is that the boys in my leadership have similar activities, and if I'm not giving my boys something more than what they get every day at home, then they aren't experiencing Scouting in my opinion. Of course, that's just my opinion.
  11. tortdog

    D&D and scouts.

    >Scouts is NOT about advancement, thats a side thing. It is about FUN. If a Scout is not having fun AND advancing, then the leaders are doing something wrong. And in my view, if a Scout come back from camp with 1 or 2 merit badges, someone screwed up.
  12. tortdog

    Eventual Co-Ed Scouting

    >BSA already has co-ed activities in the Venture program. I haven't heard of any problems there. There was a reported case on the radio here in Houston within the last year about inappropriate sexual relations at a Venturing activity between male/female Venturers. I'll see if I can find a cite on the net. I like the idea of a program for girls run by the BSA (but I don't see why the GSA would do just as well). I do, however, have some pause on whether the program as currently constituted would work as well. A specific example: In our church the young men use the BSA as the activity arm of the Church, but the young women do not use the GSA (or any other group). So...the YW leaders come up with their own programs (while the YM leaders just use BSA programs, training, etc.). I suggested to a YW leader to just take the ideas of the BSA Varsity and transfer it to the YW in our church. While our YM love the program, what gave her pause was the competitive aspect of the program. Each quarter there is a competition where teams compete against each other. She was not sure that the YW would all find that attractive (with her desire more for just training as opposed to competition). So the very aspect that the YM LOVE in Varsity (and make it a success) is the one aspect that the YW leader expressed a lack of interest in. So, I am wondering if the BSA program WOULD be an ideal fit for YW and not need significant changes to be as successful.
  13. tortdog

    Eventual Co-Ed Scouting

    Trevorum. Once the teen birth rate starts to drop and the pant lines rise up about the butt I will consider that teens and sex are not an issue to worry about. Regarding the Venturing crews, I know an LDS young lady who is a Crew president in a non-LDS Crew. I'm glad that the BSA offers the program for the YM/YW. I see value in it. However, I'm not sure if she sleeps overnight with the crew (or if they even do overnighters). Personally, as a parent, my children will not be doing any co-ed overnighters unless I am absolutely 100% certain that the events are highly and adequately supervised (and 2-deep leadership would not be good enough in my book). I love the youth, but I remember what it was like to be one.
  14. tortdog

    Eventual Co-Ed Scouting

    So desiring to keep young men/women separate in overnighters is akin to the Taliban??? I thought it was just good judgment. In my experience, trusting that the adult supervision will absoultely protect kids from hanky-panky is hopeful, but not realistic. Kids outwit adults all the time (I did). Further, I don't think we can rely on "good" kids to not engage in hanky-panky. If we make something available to get into trouble with, even good kids make mistakes. My preference? Don't make it available while they are young. I mean, we do have statutes based on the premise that people under 18 do not have the maturity to make certain decisions for themselves. Beyond my original argument, I strongly agree with that presented by others. Girls and boys ARE different. Sure, there's overlap. Sure there are some girls who might be more into traditional BSA activities, but there's a reason for the poem. Also, I don't want my boys to be angling for dates with the girls while I'm trying to teach skills. When I go out with the boys, I'm pretty sure that John is not oggling Jeff. I'm okay with that. It's easy. Sure coed groups can be taught, but its EASIER when you remove the factor of guys-girls. That's reality. Lastly, I think one reason the no gay-leader rules is prudent is it removes (theoretically) from the equation sexual interaction between adult leaders and youth. If every leader is hetero male, and ever child is hetero male, theoretically the adults will never sexually interact with the children. However, if you have hetero male adults with hetero female children, you introduce one more potential liabilty. So why go there at all? (I realize we now have female scoutmasters. I realize that it CAN be done. First, I doubt many boy scouts are oggling the female scoutmaster (and vice versa). But reality is that female teacher & male student sexual contact occurs. I only argue that removing a female-male overnight interaction makes one less thing to worry about.)
  15. tortdog

    ACLU to BSA: Heads We Win - Tails You Lose

    Merlyn. >Where has the BSA stated, in court, that it is not a religious organization? I've already shown you where the COURT that you use for your authority points out that the BSA argues it is NOT a religious organization. >You've only shown where the BSA has said it is "nonsectarian", but that's not the same, as the description of the BSA as both nonsectarian and religious has shown. Oh...you must not have read the entire court order. >And if you'll read the judge's decision, you'll see that the BSA lease was struck down because the city didn't have any sort of competitive bidding, which it can't do when dealing with a religious organization. How were those other leases granted? That's because the BSA was the group that put all the improvements into the land. You think it's just to let the BSA spend millions in improving the land, open it up to everyone (including atheists), and then only ask for the right to do its own programs during part of the year on that property? The ACLU is out to screw the BSA because the ACLU lost at the highest court of the land. It's still crying about it and is extorting money from cities (from the taxpayers), lining their own pockets, until the ACLU feels it's done enough damage. The ACLU did not fight self-admitted religious organizations with leases with San Diego because there wasn't any money there. Cash, Merlyn. Cash. Maybe if the ACLU had more believers in God and service to country it would do something with altruistic motives. I won't hold my breath. Now, directly from the court's order (and I provide more of the quote as it appears some have not read the order in complete form): >The BSA-DPC contends that as a nonsectarian organization, it is beyond the reach of the establishment clause, but that even if it were sectarian, the leases satisfy the Establishment Clause because they are part of a program whereby City parkland is offered to a variety of groups, both RELIGIOUS AND SECULAR, on a netural basis for the secular purpose of providing recreational facilities. Okay...the the BSA points out that it is nonsectarian. The BSA then argues that even if the court finds it is sectarian (which it is not), that the BSA still wins because the land is offered to groups for both religious AND secular groups. In other words, in the BSA's argument (and the court's understanding), you have (i) religious groups and (ii) secular groups. A religious group (as being discussed by the BSA/court) cannot be a secular group (otherwise the argument does not make sense. You don't say something is offered to a religious group and a secular group if religious and secular mean the same thing. That would be like saying something is offered to a "religious group" and a "religious group". Um...no. And that's why those cases I presented you with stand as evidence of the BSA NOT being a religious group, because it is not a secular group. And it's that simple. Or do you not believe the court that you cited to for your authority? http://www.bsalegal.org/downloads/1DE211_July_2003_Order.pdf
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