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DWise1_AOL

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Everything posted by DWise1_AOL

  1. I have a copy of the 1911 Handbook (an original, not a reprint). Pg 10 lists the twelve points as an "abbreviated form of the Scout Law". It is this form to which the scouts "are to commit to memory". Pg 15 Provides the laws "which relate to the BSA, are the latest and most up to date". 11. A scout is clean. He keeps clean in body and thought, stands for clean speech, clean sport, clean habits, and travels with a clean crowd. There you go. It was with BSA pretty much from the beginning if not actually from the beginning. It was also not with Lord Baden-Powell's original Scout Law, so it is a USA addition (meaning the United States of America with its capitol in the District of Columbia and not the other four "United States" in America). I think the point still remains that BSA had interpreted far more into the point of the Law than they should have. And my personal opinion that we should retain that point of the Law, properly interpreted. Congrats on owning an original 1911 Handbook. Very valuable. I had also learned a lot from my father's 1944 Bluejacket's Manual which I still own and treasure. You must have had an ancestor who was active in Scouting back then.
  2. DWise1_AOL

    Trail Life confused over who they are?????

    This is perhaps too close to the ground to be representative. After the death of my son and my wife's self-imposed alienation, I found solace in the dance classes that we had been pursuing as a couple. Such that group classes are still my main form of a social life. In one class is a homosexual whom I am very proud to call my friend. In listening to his conversations with our teacher (female) , there is a sizable homosexual population within the LDS. My ballroom instructor, very obviously gay, is also Mormon. If the Mormon Church wants to deal with homosexuality, then it needs to do so on its own. BSA need not be involved.
  3. DWise1_AOL

    LDS?????

    packsaddle: Sorry about that. She means a lot to me. KDD, a friend in my two-step class tonight offered a real-world case. She's an office manager who had lost her long-time job over a year ago when the viable company she worked for closed down because the banks refused them a business loan. For more than a year she tried to find work but, being too old and unable to accept a ridiculously low salary she had no luck. During the past year, she has used up almost all of her savings just to be able to survive. Her boyfriend has an advanced degree in mathematics with practical engineering experience. He has also been out of work for a long time, being too old and "too qualified." At least he had planned ahead for retirement (he did the math, don'cha know?) and considers himself as having retired early. Tonight, she referenced a study that says that almost everybody over a certain age (mid-50's, I think) who lost their job will never be able to get another job. She beat that statistic, having gotten a job a few months ago. She replaced a much younger worker who got fired for being 100%. They just simply could not afford to keep that 100%-er. She showed up all the time and did everything that she was told to do. And nothing more than that. She would perform every task she was told to perform and then when she was done with that she would sit there and check her on-line status. She gave 100% and clearly that was not enough. She lacked initiative. My friend gives 110%. She shows initiative. When she has completed a task, she looks for what needs to be done and then she does it. That is what 110% is about. That is why it is so important. Here is another example. I used to be married. I am a computer professional (software engineer) and my wife was a non-computer person. In fact, the main thing that motivated her to learn more was when her equally non-tech mother started doing email, though she really came up to speed during the year that she worked on her master's in education. Her first exposure to a word processor was when I installed a DOS version of WordPerfect at home. She needed to use it for school, but she refused to learn it. We both had learned touch-typing in school and on a typewriter you had to format as you went; while I had broken free of that paradigm, she was still locked into it which caused problems. Since she refused to learn anything about using the computer, her "solution" was for me to stand over her shoulder and tell her every key combination to press. That was unacceptable, so I suggested that she type everything in and I could then come back and format it, but she refused that idea because she was still trapped within the typewriter paradigm of having to format your document as you type it. It did not end well. When I later installed a Windows version of Word and didn't tell anybody about it, the very next day I came home from work and found our older son (maybe about 10 years old) using it. So she started paying him by the page to do her word processing for her. Clever little genius that he was, he used the largest font possible in order to run up the number of pages. They straightened all that out between each other, but with her master's degree she learned to do the work herself. The point to all that is my ex-wife's attitude at that time. She didn't want to take any initiative to actually learn what to do, but rather she wanted me to stand over her shoulder to tell her everything to do. Does that sound at all familiar? Doesn't that sound like the mind-set of a 100%-er? "Tell me everything to do. Stand over my shoulder and tell me every move to make." That is what it is like to have a 100%-er work for you. You have to organize and present and supervise every single task for your subordinates. So while you are busy micro-managing every single thing that all your subordinates do, when are you ever able to do your own job? I have been trained in Marxism. We were trained in Marxism by the United States Air Force in our first resident NCO leadership school. A central idea in Marxism was that it was the workers who created the actual production while the managers were parasites feeding off of the workers' production. But what that ignores is that it is the work of the managers that enables the workers to do their work. Of course, I benefited from having worked for my father, a general contractor and Seabee Chief Petty Officer (unfortunately, he had died a year before I made chief myself). When I started working for him, his first imperative was to let me know that he had done everything that he was telling me to do and that he was willing and able to still do it himself if necessary. The main point being that by having me do the dirty work, that freed him to do the job of securing the work for us to do and of providing everything that I needed to do the job that I was doing. Management is not a pack of parasites feeding off the sweat of the workers. Management is what provides the work for the workers and enables them to to that work. So then, management has a lot more important things to do than to stand over every worker and micro-manage them. Any 100%-er who keeps them from doing their job is a liability. Any less-than-100%-er, such as a 70%-er, is a far greater liability. What company can afford to carry such a liability? We all need to be 110%-ers just to survive. Unless our father or father-in-law runs the company.
  4. DWise1_AOL

    LDS?????

    KBB, ever see Steve Martin's movie, "L.A. Story"? Loved that movie! He was a TV weatherman. The weather reports for Los Angeles were always the same, so he took a day off and just reran an old "sonny" forecast when in reality a major storm hit that sank the station owner's boat. KBB, have you ever had to troubleshoot a PC? You look at the symptoms and you try to figure out what's wrong. If you're right, then you're a hero, but if you're wrong then what the ?, we just have to replace a computer. Have you ever troubleshot a person? You look at the symptoms and you try to figure out what's wrong. If you're right, then you're a hero, but if you're wrong then what the ?, you just killed somebody. Same thing, isn't that? Kill a computer, kill a person. And yet, somehow it seems to feel kind of different, wouldn't you agree? I remember one commedian/commedienne who was talking about terminal diseases. That person was wanting to see what his physician's actual grades were in his own personal condition. OK, you did OK overall, but how especially did you do with prostate cancer? Or with breast cancer (a very particular concern of mine since a very dear friend of mine has it)? My very dear friend has breast cancer, dammit! I do not want her care to go to some fracking idiot who only got a 70% grade on breast cancer! I want her to be treated by the people who got over 100%!!!! [remark removed by moderator because of 'F' word] In the real world, 100% does not cut it one least bit!
  5. DWise1_AOL

    LDS?????

    Yes, the mediocre students can indeed become exceptional late-bloomers[/i]. Everybody has the potential to exceed his/her past performance. But what about now? Isn't that what we are talking about, now? The unexceptional can become President of the United States with the right daddy and party backing? Yeah, OK, so what? You don't have a rich and powerful daddy with a legacy? You just want to keep your job? If you just want to keep your job, then 70% is not enough, but then it never has been enough. If you just want to keep your job, then 100% is not enough. It used to be enough, but not more. Here is the military model from which we derive the teaching of "110%". A fundamental value that we inculcate from the beginning in basic training is submission to the standards. There are minimal standards that we must all maintain at all times. Maintaining those minimal standards is called "discipline". While the popular misconception is that one's sergeant or petty officer is constantly standing over you and yelling at you to do everything, that is false. OK, at first they have to stand over you and tell you everything you need to do, but that phase is quickly passed, or else you will be processed out of the service. The entire purpose of discipline is that you will internalize all the rules and doing the required things becomes an integral part of you; more than 35 years later, I still fold my underwear and t-shirts to a 6-inch width. The point is that I do not need anybody to be standing over my shoulder yelling at me to fold my underwear that way. OK, so we have a force of "robots" all doing everything the specified way. But that is not what's actually happening. We all know the standards and we work to meet those standards. But the day-to-day is not what is expected to happen. Situations arise for which there does not yet exist any protocol. Every year, everybody's "eval" (though for officers it's a fitrep, a "fitness report") comes due. A running "joke" is to refer to somebody's unexpected action as an "initiative bullet", an annotation on their eval/fitrep of some kind of initiative that they had taken, an entry that will result in his being considered for becoming a chief petty officer. Even though we require adherence to the standards, we still depend on the ones who take the initiative. In the military, those who maintain 100% are only maintaining the standard, doing the minimal that is required of them. Those are our administrators, our paper-pushers. In the military, those who push ahead to put in 110% will become our leaders.
  6. DWise1_AOL

    Trail Life confused over who they are?????

    OK, so what is your avatar's origin? I know that it is not the Resistance ("Star Wars") and certainly is not the symbol of the Twelve Colonies of Kobold. Care to enlighten us?
  7. DWise1_AOL

    Trail Life confused over who they are?????

    moosetracker, could you please refer us back to the posting you are responding to? I find this site particularly difficult to navigate, so any trail signs you could leave would help immensely. I have suffered the great misfortune of having had a friend talk me into taking her Baptist mega-church's DivorceCare program (though her ulterior motive was to not take a competing program on the same night as the Single Ministry's dance classes since the ratio of men to women in those classes was typically 50:150 and also since I was one of the few men who had any clue how to dance -- apparently a rare and valuable commodity). I would also point out that California divorce laws is "divorce on demand" for which no actual reason ever needs to ever be given, so I don't even have a reason for being divorced. In the world-view that you see expressed in that unidentifed link, do they differentiate between those who initiate divorce and those who have divorce forced upon them? The reason for this question is, since the creators of that link apparently view divorce as some kind of moral failing, do they even bother to draw any kind of distinction between who initiate a divorce and those who have divorce forced upon them? Because the law in states with "divorce upon demand" does indeed create an entire population of those upon whom divorce has been forced. To begin with, that mega-church had policies that everybody's primary responsibility while going through a divorce is to try to reconcile with your estranged spouse. That was also the primary concern of DivorceCare. While that may make sense within Baptist theology (and I would personally, as an atheist, agree that divorce should be avoided and that reconciliation should be attempted, barring cases of abuse, especially physical abuse), there is also the fact that some divorce filings are legitimate attempts to escape abuse (a dance teacher I assist had suffered through years of physical abuse and fearing for her own safety and for the safety of her children). Again, I would ask what your link says about those cases. Also, I must point out that a number of postings on-line that I have read (a very small number compared to what must actually exist) have been from victims of abuse who were so outraged by DivorceCare's insistence that they reconcile with their abusive spouse they then decided to become Divorced from God (for which there was a documentary, but its website seems to have gone away). Anyway, the result of DivorceCare on me, an atheist, was this. In video tape after video tape, they repeatedly emphasized that we ourselves can never ever possibly have any hope of ever recovering from divorce through our own powers and efforts. Only Jesus could ever possibly enable us to recover from divorce. that told me that, according to them, only a Christian could ever hope to recover from a divorce. So then according to the training that I was receiving, I personally could never ever recover from divorce. OK, that's a complete waste! But long after that, I read something even worse. I read that the US Army chaplaincy had decided to require every single soldier going through a divorce to also go through the very same DivorceCare program I had gone through. DivorceCare is only appropriate for a narrow population. To require it for all is inexcusable. But we haven't examined the funny part yet. There is a stock and standard joke about Baptists and dancing: "Why do Baptists condemn sex while standing? Because they fear that it could result in dancing." That local Baptist-like mega-church I mentioned (but will not name) has a single ministry of about 15,000 people. What would be the healthiest kind of social event for singles to meet singles? A dance. But what do Baptists think about dancing? The mind shudders. The singles ministry of that mega-church had to function kind of outside the bounds of the top pastors. My friend had to go up before the mega-church's top leaders in defense of the singles' dance classes and events and very nearly was excommunicated (or the Baptist equivalent) over it. There was a time when the church sponsored country dances, but the top pastors exacted very strict restrictions. Only line dances were allowed. After all, if partner dancing were to be allowed, how could they possibly control it to the point where they could ensure that married individuals didn't dance with unmarried individuals? In reality, the organizers of that dance just went ahead and allowed partner dancing. Nothing at all collapsed as a result. Not so interestingly, some people look at the world as black and white. While the world is in reality gray. Their boundaries are not set in black and white, but rather they need to define the degrees of gray.
  8. The most recent copy of The Boy Scout Handbook that I have is the 10th edition, 1990. Pages 553-561 present and discuss the Scout Law. As I recall, the first part of each section quotes from official BSA Rules and Regulations or Bylaws, whichever is the actual source (sorry, I haven't read those since the 1990's, though the last time was after BSA had banned access to them, since I had bought copies when they were still sold in the Scout Shop). On page 561: The discussion that follows mentions physical dirt, which is unavoidable but which can be washed off, and "moral dirt" (my own term for it which is not used within the text) which cannot be so easily washed off: That is what BSA taught, though yet again that is not what BSA practiced, including BSA's targeted insults to those whom it wished to exclude. Just as we have seen in this topic, BSA added extraneous interpretations to this point of the Law. It is a binding principle for all BSA leaders that we are not to add nor subtract from the actual requirements, and yet that is what BSA was doing (and still is). BSA re-interpretation that point of the Law to mean that homosexuality is not "clean" and hence they justified expelling gay members for being unable to follow Scout Law. That is adding to the requirements for membership. And I suspect that it is that re-interpretation of that point of the Law, that addition to the Law, that prompted the opening post (OP) of this topic. Also note that CLEAN, like REVERENT, are themselves additions to the original Law. I own a reprint of BSA's first Handbook for Boys, but it's packed away and I cannot get to it right now. However, as I recall, those additional points to Scout Law already existed in BSA's version of Scouting and hence have been part of BSA-style Scouting from the beginning. All I'm stating here is that any comparison between UK Scouting and BSA Scouting needs to keep that history in mind. My opinion is that this point of the Law should be retained, but only so long as its proper interpretation is observed and it's not used for BSA political purposes. The same as with REVERENT, which does not require the exclusion of atheists and which does explicitly exclude the outright bigotry that we see so many Scouters express.
  9. DWise1_AOL

    Trail Life confused over who they are?????

    A commendable approach, Basementdweller. Run the program within the troop as it should be run and act as a buffer between the troop and BSA. Continue to keep BSA as far away from your unit and from your people as is possible.
  10. DWise1_AOL

    LDS?????

    Yes, packsaddle, I agree with you that that is what we teach students in school. And it is the first in the list of "The Wrong Lessons: Things NOT to Learn in School": And if you want to present George W. Bush as an example, then I'm right with you on that one!
  11. I suffered through BSA's religious discrimination in the 1990's and was very active on the rec.scouting during that time. I was also very active in Scouting at the time even though I had been summarily expelled for being an atheist, but since my boys aged out I have been out of the loop since circa 1999. I am starting to prepare web pages describing my experience and I need to know the current situation. The main problem was that BSA claimed to have a rule that required belief in a "Supreme Being" and used that "rule" as the reason for expelling both youth and adults for religious reasons. That "rule" did not exist. That wording was tried in the 1980's purportedly to make BSA more inclusive, but when it resulted in the expulsion of Life Scout candidate Paul Trout, a Unitarian Universalist who did not believe in a "Supreme Being", BSA and CSE Ben Love responded to the negative publicity and hundreds of letters of protest by reinstating Paul Trout and dropping the "Supreme Being" wording, calling it a mistake. By 1991, the very same CSE Ben Love had reinstated that mistake saying that it was now a rule and was now using it to actively root out and expel non-theists. When I affiliated in 1989 I hadn't heard about that situation, but knowing about the "Duty to God" wording from my prior involvement as a youth I knew that I had to deal with it. So I researched into what "Duty to God" is supposed to mean and found that the officially published policy on "Duty to God" and on religion did agree with my own beliefs and that I would have no problem swearing to do my "Duty to God". It was a couple years later when news about the Randall twins broke and I suddenly found that BSA was violating its own officially published rules, regulations, bylaws, and policies. That was also when I first became aware of that definition of "Duty to God" as requiring belief in a "Supreme Being", which itself directly violated officially policy that BSA is forbidden to make any such definitions. I went on rec.scouting to discover what was going on, the resident BSA spy included my postings along with countless others that were submitted as evidence in federal court (Welsh v. BSA), and that led to my expulsion. I was able to research what BSA's Rules & Regulations and Bylaws said because at the time they were sold in the Scout Shop and so were readily accessible to all. Then when copies kept showing up in court to show that BSA was violating its own rules, BSA took them out of the Scout Shop and restricted access to them. They were also used in the Randall trial in which the judge finally got fed up with BSA's double-talk and directly ordered our Council Exec to show him that "Supreme Being" rule, to which our CE had to admit in court and under oath (I would assume) that no such rule actually existed. My question is whether such a rule exists now. In the 14 years since last contact, has BSA changed its officially published rules, regulations, bylaws, or policies to give that "belief in a Supreme Being" mistake actual official status as a real rule? If so, then when and where is it? Every time I try to post I get an Edit Conversation box that complains "Empty Response" I suffered through BSA's religious discrimination in the 1990's and was very active on the rec.scouting during that time. I was also very active in Scouting at the time even though I had been summarily expelled for being an atheist, but since my boys aged out I have been out of the loop since circa 1999. I am starting to prepare web pages describing my experience and I need to know the current situation. The main problem was that BSA used a "rule" that did not exist, belief in a "Supreme Being", to expel both youth and adults for religious reasons. My question is whether such a rule exists now. In the 14 years since last contact, has BSA changed its officially published rules, regulations, bylaws, or policies to give that "belief in a Supreme Being" mistake actual official status as a real rule? If so, then when did that happen and and where is it officially published? EDITED BY PACKSADDLE: I'm also trying to respond and getting the "Empty Response" message. I sent a message to the managers to see if they can fix this problem. Anyway, I'll abuse my moderator status just a bit by offering Welcome to the Forums! Even if the forums are evidently not working well just now.
  12. No, absolutely not! BSA has proposed outside of its actual rules, regulations, bylaws, etc, the existence of a rule that requires "belief in a Supreme Being". Such a rule has so far not been determined to actually exist. For that matter, in court in the case of Randall v. Orange County Council the judge did directly order BSA Orange County Council to produce such a rule and said Council Exec, Kent Gibbs, did directly inform the judge that no such rule in fact actually exists. Boy Scouts America, Inc, admitted in court that there is no such rule requiring "belief in a Supreme Being." Do you have any problem with that? The point of this entire thread is that as of the 1990's, there was in deed no BSA rule that actually required "belief in a Supreme Being". There was no such actual rule in the mid-1980's during the Paul Trout debacle and, in deed, BSA very explicitly stated that any "belief in a Supreme Being" "rule" was a complete "mistake". There was still no such rule in the early 1990's when Chief Scout Exec Ben Love, the exact same CSE who had reassured everybody during the Paul Trout debacle, was again enforcing the "belief in a Supreme Being" "rule" that in the Paul Trout debacle he himself had labelled a "mistake". My question in this entire thread from the very start was whether anything had changed since the late 1990's. Going into the late 1990'a, any "belief in a Supreme Being" rule in BSA did not exist. I am asking whether any official rule has been enacted since then. So far, all indications are completely negative. That is what I have been asking all along: What has officially changed since the late 1990's?
  13. DWise1_AOL

    Bible Statistics

    True enough, but the point does remain.
  14. DWise1_AOL

    LDS?????

    This last election, we had a Mormon running for President. I very personally observed and personally experienced what happens when Mormons take over an institution, such as BSA, Inc. For backing, I refer to Penn and Teller's ZBullshit! episode which cited the Mormon take-over of BSA in the 1980's. I did not vote for Romney, but it was not because he is a Mormon. Really, there were so very many problems with voting him, Mormonism was the least of my concerns. But still, having seen what an absolutely mess they have made of BSA, how could we ever trust them with the US government?
  15. DWise1_AOL

    LDS?????

    Yeah, well, LDS is kind of a ... OK , not really a mixed bag. A lot of Mormons are personally decent folk. But the entire community/church/political/court-room thing can get rather weird. And through a gay friend or two I've been picking up on some extra Mormon weirdness with regards to homosexuality within the community, but I'm not qualified to speak on that except to say that there is something going on there. For normal district-level stuff, there can be a lot of frustration felt by non-Mormons. There are district-level Camporalls planned and executed, but all the Mormon units pull out on Saturday night in order to be in church Sunday morning, thus also pulling out of the Sunday activities. Basically, the Mormons and the non-Mormons end up running their own separate and practically independent programs. Within any group/organization, you want to be able to work with everybody, but at the same time the Mormons keep themselves separate from the rest. Another element is the political/judicial. The Mormon Church has selected Boy Scouts, Inc, as its male youth program. As such, every Mormon boy is required to participate in BSA Scouting. Whether a boy actually participates or not, the Mormon Church enrolls him in BSA's Scouting programs up until he reaches the age of 18. Regardless. But wait, we haven't gotten to the weird part yet. The Mormon Church programs every single boy to "Eagle out" by age 14. Every Mormon boy's actual involvement with Scouting is programmed to end at age 14, and yet the Mormon Church continues to enroll and pay for every single Mormon male until he reaches the age of 18. So what are those boys doing between 14 and 18? Mormon sports programs! Now for the judicial angle. In the religious discrimination lawsuits of the early 1990's, a recurring and staple position of the BSA lawyers arguing in the various courts was that BSA really didn't want to discriminate against these other religious groups (eg, atheists), but they were being extorted by the Mormon Church. If BSA were to allow even a single atheist to join Scouting, then the Mormon Church would withdraw all its support, which would be economically devastating to BSA, Inc. Of course, the BSA lawyers were never known to ever be consistent as they also argued that BSA was a secret religious organization and had been from the start, BSA had never ever been a secret religious organization even from the start, etc. Basically, whatever outright lie the BSA lawyers could tell whenever it suited them. So basically, the Mormon units seem to be running their own program separate from everybody else, which causes friction with non-Mormons. A Mormon afterthought, if I may. Back circa 1986, a male co-worker had married a Mormon woman and had hence married into the church. One day he came in to work and was complaining loudly and bitterly of what had just been done to him. He had just been drafted as Cubmaster. As he loudly proclaimed to everybody at work, "I have two daughters! I have no sons!". Basically, the Church tells you what your job will be and that is it. Here is the non-Mormons' take on that. Yes, all the positions do get filled, but what kind of service is rendered? Mormon "volunteers" render as much service as they are required to render, and no more. Think of the volunteer's line, "What is the least that I can do? And I do mean the very least." Mormon "volunteers" do the absolute minimum that is required of them and not one bit more (obvious individual exceptions duly noted). Non-Mormon volunteers are not required to fill a position and so they normally will put out that 110% and more (I will digress on that later) and will do so cheerfully instead of begrudgingly. In my years at District Roundtable representing my sons' troop, that dichotomy between Church-required service and actual service came up again and again. There is a definite difference between meeting a required commitment, which would be the Mormon model, and actually volunteering our time, which would be the non-Mormon model. "110%". When I was a kid, I couldn't understand that, since there could not possibly be more than 100% of anything. As a retired Chief Petty Officer with 35 years of service, I understand it fully. When you give 100%, what really are you giving? You do everything that is required of you.That is what giving 100% is, doing everything that is required of you. In school, do you know what grade that would give you? A "C". So another word for "100%" would be "mediocre." How then can you excel? By giving more than is required of you. By giving more than 100% Like giving 110%. That is the meaning of "giving 110%". And that is what I taught my Webelos. Hu Rah!
  16. DWise1_AOL

    Do you like the Boy Scouts of America?

    I am not trying to arbitrate truth, but truth must be served! You side yourself against seek truth. That is what your religion requires of you, so I cannot speak against that. But my own religion requires me to seek out the truth, so of necessity my posts must seek out the truth while your own posts must avoid the truth. OK, that is how it is, even though it seems evil to me. But I have to ask you just what you mean by this: "The Wise One (@AOL.com) arbitrates ... grammar for forum posters." Just what the frak are you talking about there? And I only call liars those who deliberately tell lies. Like Eagledad. And that has absolutely nothing to do with forum software, but rather with Eagledad's deliberate decision to deliberately lie. And that is for him to resolve, not for you and your irrevelant platitudes.
  17. DWise1_AOL

    Bible Statistics

    I have been an atheist for over half a century. I have several bibles. Some King James Version (which was commissioned because King James wanted a bible that emphasized the Divine Right of Kings as opposed to the more egalitarian Geneva Bible), searchable files thereof, a German Keppler Bibel (which was the first bible that ever gave me any indication that the ending of Mark was added onto the original long afterwards -- that extraneous ending includes the accounts of the Resurrected Christ being observed and that verse that spawned the cults about safely handling venomous snakes and drinking poison), and Bruce Metzger's Greek New Testament, in which the alternative versions of the bible are presented, including Revelations which ironically promises severe consequences on anyone who would make even the slightest change to Revelations. I also have other religious works, such as "Everyman's Talmud" (the Talmud itself is the size of an encyclopedia which has no index, so a Talmudic scholar had memorize the entire thing), the Kybalion, Buddhist Cathecism, Book of Mormon, etc. I used to have a copy of "Pirke Avoth" ("Sayings of the Fathers"), but then I lent it to a friend who then became a Mormon and my Pirke Avoth is now lost. Why would an atheist have a bible? The obvious answer is "for self-defense". Please remember that many of us had lived through the "Jesus Freak Movement", in which the fundamentalist churches were flooded by burned-out hippies circa 1970. The decade that followed was filled by over-zealous fundamentalist proselytizers constantly accosting everybody else. This, if nothing else, is a principal reason for the public's general antipathy for Christians. And since so many atheists are themselves former devout Christians, it would only be natural for them to put their Bible knowledge to good use. Also, Christian doctrine and mythology has had a strong influence on European culture. Learning Bible stories should be as required as learning Greek and Roman mythology, other very rich sources of stories.
  18. DWise1_AOL

    So what do you think of this?

    Back when I was involved in the 1990's, Youth Protection was a big red-hot item. On the surface, it looked like BSA was pro-actively addressing the problem. And yet at the same time, BSA had a horrible reputation among youth programs in its refusal to inform other programs of problem adults. As I understand it, though I do not know the legal reasons why BSA was forced to do this, it was only within the past year that BSA has finally had to release its files. And in our YP training, part of the attitude was that the training was more for our own protection than for the boys'. Part of the completion of the training was to pronounce us as now being "youth protected." And while that may appear odd as I describe it, there was indeed a kernel of truth there. We needed to not only be aware of situations that our boys needed to protected against, but at the same time we ourselves needed to protect ourselves from any appearance of inappropriate conduct. A Chinese co-worker once shared a Chinese saying with me: "Do not tie your shoes in a watermelon patch." If you are walking through somebody else's watermelon patch and you bend down to tie your shoes, what does it look like you are doing to an on-looker? Like you are stealing a watermelon. Do not look like you are doing anything that you shouldn't be doing. How easy is it for a decent adult to be accused of something that he didn't do, would never dream of doing? Youth Protection Training does indeed also serve to educate leaders to not do something stupid, regardless of how innocent it was. But then in the early 1990's, I caught part of an investigative news program about past BSA molestation scandals. One of the most interesting things in that report was a list of arguments that BSA lawyers used in the lawsuits. Like, the child had invited the molestation. Does that sound familiar? Like an example of a false claim that was presented in Youth Protection Training? One claim after another that we had been trained to reject as false were the exact ones that BSA lawyers had used in defense of BSA in those molestation lawsuits. As it turned out, the entire Youth Protection Training program had been put into place and given such importance as part of a CYA reaction, not pro-action, of BSA because of the molestation lawsuits. In spite of that, youth protection is extremely important. Being aware of the stupid mistakes that you need to avoid in order to protect yourself is also extremely important. Regardless of BSA's possibly and very likely questionable motives, this is a very important issue. There was something else in that news program that was very interesting. Why are molesters so interested in getting involved in youth programs? The answer I've seen is that they are predators looking for new prey. But the molesters interviewed in that program told a different story. They knew that they had done wrong and they wanted to do right. They were drawn to youth programs in order to make amends and to do good. And then their weakness would betray them yet again.
  19. DWise1_AOL

    Bible Statistics

  20. Then do please stop playing semantics and stop projectin. And I know better than to call your kind "friend". Another youth movement with different name and different objectives would not be Scouting. BSA holds a monopoly on Scouting in this country. Despite it's being held hostage by religious bigots. A youth movement that is not Scouting is not nor have ever been the issue. We are talking about Scouting being available to all. If you want to exclude anybody, then you had damned well be able to provicde a cogent argument for their exclusion. Officially published BSA policy provides no such support. I know full well that apologists for BSA religious discrimination have advanced the "argument" that atheists could form their own "Atheist Scouts". I am also quite certain that that same argument has been posted on this very same forum. I know that such an "argument" is absolutely false and I know that proof of this is BSA's readiness to sue anybody over their "copyright".
  21. This puts a lie to the claim by apologists for BSA discriminatory practices that all those excluded need to do is to create their own Scouting organization; eg, "Atheist Scouts", which I believe I've seen them offer. BSA holds a monopoly on Scouting in this country and they have a long history of suing anybody who tries to create an alternative Scouting organization.
  22. DWise1_AOL

    Do you like the Boy Scouts of America?

    Pearls before swine.
  23. DWise1_AOL

    Do you like the Boy Scouts of America?

    I have tried, but it's Eagledad who's led us astray here. OK, you want to lead us further astray. I agree that a lot of Christians don't know enough about their religion. Usually they've grown up in it, had "put in their pew time" as Mike Doonesbury put it, know everything they're supposed to do say in the rituals, but they never really learned anything about it. A similar situation has been described to me about the effects of the phenomenal growth of fundamentalism during the "Jesus Freak" movement of circa 1970, in that the churches had to abandon the traditional program that took several years of study in favor of bringing everybody up quick by telling them what to believe backed up with a smattering of Bible verses pulled out of context; it's been suggested that creationists' affinity for quote-mining and their inability to see anything wrong with the practice is because they had learned to do the same thing with the Bible. It is my position and it has always been my position that everybody should practice their own religion, but at the very least they need to know everything that they can about their own religion. That is why I was proactive in our pack in promoting the Religious Emblems Program. That is also why I will challenge believers to examine their own beliefs and to not be afraid to question those beliefs, because that is the only way that they can test whether they have misunderstood something. For a neutral example, think of the young school girl who didn't want to recite the Pledge of Allegiance because she was afraid of the four witches: "... and to the republic, four witches stand, ..." When all that they've done was to put in their pew time, then the most that they learned about their religion was as a child. Too many believers, not just Christian, have childish ideas about their religion and about their god because they formed those ideas in childhood and never returned to question those ideas as they themselves matured. Again, that is discussed in Stupid Ways, Smart Ways, to Think about God, by Rabbi Jack Bemporad and Michael Shevack, one of the pearls I had cast before Eagledad. What does that have to do with anything? It most certainly has absolutely nothing to do with what we've been talking about, which is whether a specific Christian doctrine, Fruit of the Spirit, has any merit to be taught to all students, Christian and non-Christian alike. Sorry, but that is a very stupid question that you just asked. Which makes me wonder whether you even have any clue at all about what we've been talking about. Yet again, what you're saying makes absolutely no sense.
  24. DWise1_AOL

    Do you like the Boy Scouts of America?

    As far as I can tell, creationism has nothing at all to do Look at that sentence: "And I see it doing major damage to Scouting when BSA practices its lying and hypocrisy." What does "it" represent, what does it stand in for? It stands in for: "when BSA practices its lying and hypocrisy". Common English sentence construction. Hopefully you won't want me to graph it for you, given the lack of graphics support for such an effort. And I don't think your offer would work. After all, I've agreed with them on a number of things but it makes no difference to them. And now with qwazse's latest post, I very seriously doubt whether he even knows what we're discussing.
  25. DWise1_AOL

    Do you like the Boy Scouts of America?

    Do Hindus drink water? Yes. I drink water. Does that make me a Hindu. I don't think so. IOW, you don't need to be a zealot to take things out of context. All you need is to want to force a source to say something that it does not say and which somehow serves your own dishonest motives. The term for that is "quote-mining". Actually, yes it is saying that. Since non-Christians would not meet the clearly stated requirements for receiving the Fruit of the Spirit, they would instead receive the fruit of the flesh, none of which includes being nice. Of course, it is absolutely ridiculous to say that non-Christians can't be nice -- actually, the case is more the opposite in that it can be very difficult to find a Christian who is nice. But that view of non-Christians is a modern one and not a Christian view. What Eagledad proposed is to include the Christian view to the education of all our youth, including the non-Christians. That proposal, while made with good intentions, would have disasterously bad results. Think about implementing that education. You want to have your "liberal reading" applied to that education. Would that happen? The fundamentalist and other theists would instead insist that their interpretation, the straight-forward reading, be used. The ensuing battle over teaching religious doctrine in the public schools would split the community further apart than religion already has. And even if that education were to be implemented with your "liberal reading", our children are not stupid. And they can read! And they will read Galatians in a straight-forward manner -- I know that because that is how I had read the Bible when it turned me into an atheist. And when they have read Galatians, they will see what it really says and that you are trying to teach them nonsense. That is why, despite Eagledad's lie, I strongly disapprove of teaching the doctrine of "Fruit of the Spirit". I do strongly approve of teaching those positive qualities along with several other positive qualities. I could even agree with mentioning that most if not all the religions also identify those as positive qualities. I just see it as an incredibly enormous mistake to teach them with Galatians 5.
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