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Everything posted by AltadenaCraig

  1. I agree that was the most likely motivation. In our hyper-competitive world, what parent doesn't want their kid to acquire skills to "be the boss"? I find it easier to swallow "Leadership Development" when it's defined non-traditionally. "Servant Leadership" comes to mind. Same with disaggregating leadership into its constituent parts: first learn to lead oneself, then how to lead oneself within a team, then within the leadership of that team, before finally learning the responsibilities of being "the leader". Of course, this is just me & my $.02. BSA has got much bigger f
  2. I wish the BSA had left well enough alone and kept "Leadership" as one of the Methods of Scouting rather than slipping it in as an additional "Aim of Scouting" as they did a few years ago. With "Leadership" now as both an Aim and a Method, not only has the BSA confused the concept of Leadership they've also muddled the foundational principles of the organization. Inexcusable.
  3. If the GSUSA had marketed their Gold Award half as effectively as they've promoted 'Thin Mints' and 'Do-Si-Do's' we wouldn't be in this mess.
  4. Agreed. Scoutbook is particularly guilty of troop-centric approvals/permissions. I'm hoping COVID-19 will spur changes to Scoutbook to allow for (perhaps even promote) Patrol-level management.
  5. Our Troop-level virtual meetings tend toward top-down "presentations" with very little scout interaction even when invited to virtually "raise hands". Our ASM's, on the other hand, report much more interactive and enjoyable virtual Patrol Meetings. Even a Community meeting I recently participated in was much more effective during the breakout session than during the "please raise your hand" plenary session. Our Council is now hinting at tentatively re-opening "in person scouting" at the small-group level (no more than 10 scouts with exactly 2 adults). Until further details are ava
  6. While imitating people's cultures might be confused with mimicry or mocking, imitating people's worthy actions should be safe & heralded. I love the opportunity to quote Gen. Washington, especially in prayer: "... that God would have you ... in his holy protection, that he would incline the hearts of the Citizens ... to entertain a brotherly affection and love for one another, ... and finally, that he would most graciously be pleased to dispose us all, to do Justice, to love mercy, and to demean ourselves with that Charity, humility and pacific temper of mind, which were the Char
  7. In 1980, Claremont Men's College graduated the first class of 4-year women. Years later the name was changed to Claremont McKenna College, but not before many women objected to the change. They liked the "rebel" image the name implied.
  8. We're less in disagreement and more in violent agreement, it seems to me. I'm not advocating changing 'Scoutmaster' - I agree with those who say its not a priority. And I don't believe "the patch makes the leader (or tyrant)". What I do believe is in the current climate anything can become a target for the cancel-culture (heck, this weekend some were castigating old broadcast jokes in an attempt to shade Vin Scully - even Giants fans have been coming to his defense!), and consequently we should Be Prepared. To be sure, in the vein of "never let a crises go to waste" a couple of thi
  9. I disagree with you. I've been thinking all day about your post. I'll risk hijacking my own thread and reply as it allows a point I feel is important. I'm happy to post "I disagree with you" - and I'm thankful you posted your disagreement with me, without a downvote. Words move the ball forward. But there's nothing courteous or kind about a red down-arrow on one's post. How many of our fellow Scouters are turned-off from contributing their opinions because they'd feel a downvote is unfriendly? Isn't that a legitimate consideration?
  10. To @qwazse's credit, his downvotes were accompanied by comments.
  11. This EXACTLY makes the point. Sisyphus had more success rolling his rock than we should expect to have attempting to justify 'master' because the audience is not our leadership trainees but rather all the others we wish to attract. Among ourselves questioning "Scoutmaster" sounds silly, I completely agree. But to expect showing others "how the term 'master' has been used as titles" is preposterous. I'm on board with scoutldr's suggestion to appropriate "Advisor".
  12. Well, since you asked, I don't think it should be on the forum. There's a reason it's not an option on Facebook, for example. A downvote is aggressive, IMHO, and has no place except perhaps in outrageous posts; and even then the better option is to "report". Ditch the downvote. Now back to the topic at hand ...
  13. You would do well to familiarize yourself with the article referenced in the OP. References such as those smack exactly of the kind of "tyrants and tin gods, renegades and recalcitrants, bullies and belligerents, dictators, martinets, and “world’s oldest Patrol Leaders” masquerading as Scoutmasters" we need to eschew. And no, I'm not so mean-spirited as to downvote your post.
  14. One man's hype to panic weak minded Chicken Littles is another man's Being Prepared, which we do teach the youth. I'm keeping my powder dry as I lean toward Nonsense, but I'm also contemplating alternatives just in case. #1 on my list: "Scoutguider".
  15. When a Texas realty group abandons the term "Master Bedroom", how long before references to "Scoutmaster" meet the same fate? https://www.star-telegram.com/news/state/texas/article243816787.html Truth be told, Clarke Green and 'Ask Andy' have long observed that the B-P coined "Scoutmaster" as it related to "Schoolmaster", emphasizing the "teacher" aspect rather than "master" in the day. An important distinction if you're adhering to Scout-led-troop principles: the true 'master' is the SPL, with SM's & ASM's as "teachers". https://scoutmastercg.com/just-what-does-scoutmaster-mean/.
  16. I like the idea of Rovers and I like the idea of proficiency for Rovers. I even like the idea of a Scout proficiency award (perhaps mandatory for the "Instructor" position), requiring some form of re-testing to maintain currency. Yet I'm hesitant to require currency of all scouts. The reason is Baden-Powell's attitude toward proficiency as described in his "Aids to Scoutmastership": That's from The Boss, himself.
  17. Don't fetch your mourning armband just yet, @desertrat77, at least not for OA. Every other youth program I've been associated with - Little League & AYSO - each had an All Star component. Some All Star program will naturally accompany Scouting, in whatever form survives, to meet the needs of those who just can't get enough as well as serve as a beacon for others. We need an All Star program, and for better or worse OA is ours. I do believe there are Sacred Cows within the OA. Any traditions that smack of "Cultural Appropriation" (dancing, regalia, etc.) even now are being hust
  18. The story broke yesterday: https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/n-j-judge-spared-teen-rape-suspect-because-he-came-n1026111 NBC doesn't mention "Eagle Scout" until the end of the article. Other news outlets aren't being so charitable (with headlines screaming "Eagle Scout Rape Suspect!") Bad situation all around.
  19. I'll mention I don't think the two traits are mutually exclusive. To be sure, the Lao Tzu quote isn't a license for Scoutmasters to abdicate their responsibilities to guide & mentor ... for me the quote is a reminder to work with the SPL in the background and not hog her spotlight (I'm now the Scoutmaster of our girls' troop). If there's an issue with a scout beyond the scope of the PL/SPL I'll try to work with that scout more directly, but even less obtrusively. Safety issues aside, of course, which require immediate intervention. YIS - - Craig
  20. I'm inclined toward Lao Tzu's quote in the Troop Leader Guidebook: A leader is most effective when people barely know he exists. When his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: "we did it ourselves"
  21. Highly astute observation, @fred8033. As BSA uniforms through the years have mirrored service fatigues, headgear, etc., I'm surprised BSA has allowed the uniform to drift toward "dress" and away from "functional" (shoulder loops?). All the more surprising what with the availability of technical fabrics. And the Army's recent field uniforms (BDU/ACU) have been designed toward functional, with liberal use of Velcro. Highly agree @Jameson76. Here're my suggestions for getting back to functional: Cut should be straight (without tail), and insist it NOT be tucked-in (imitat
  22. Fellow Scouters: As it's been ~ 3-1/2 years since the last reply to this excellent question and thread, I thought I'd resurrect it in case some blessed Scouter has found the right recipe for intra-patrol, SPL, & intra-PLC, and intra-troop communications. INTRA-TROOP: For me, intra-troop communications is synonymous with "parental" communications, and eMail is satisfactory. We have five patrols; accordingly I've established five patrol aliases with as many parent & scout eMail accounts as possible. Proven advantages & disadvantages include: Advantages: Patrol-spe
  23. I remember when Tiger Cubs was initiated. I saw it as a response to Y-Guides (then “Indian Guides”) which began in 1st grade and threatened to capture dads & their boys before they became eligible for cubs. I see Lions as a similar response to youth soccer, which a few years ago began capturing families at Kindergarten. My son & I enjoyed Tigers - and I’ve been involved ever since even though my son is now 23 - but I can see Barry’s point that for most parents, this race-to-the-bottom just invites early burnout.
  24. By my reading of https://troopleader.scouting.org/scoutings-aims-and-methods/ it's now BOTH an aim and a method (?!?). If anyone on this channel can point to who within the BSA is responsible for integrity among its publications (including websites), please let me know as I'd be happy to volunteer to help where I can. My experience was with TRADOC (Training & Doctrine Command) which performs this function for the US Army. I don't know that BSA needs an entire bureaucracy (none of the other uniformed services has a TRADOC), but BSA obviously need some help. Nowadays such a functi
  25. At first blush I agree. When I followed my son into our troop a dozen years ago I was mentored by our SM and ASM's and allowed to grow into an ASM role at my own pace. These GSUSA mothers, on the other hand, are sensing they'll be thrown right into the deep-end (to mix metaphors) if they're to provide a meaningful experience to their girls as Cadettes. Nevertheless, back in the day, before the GSUSA allowed their program to ignore the outdoor component, somehow their structural model DID work. I'd be curious to your thoughts about what might have made up for the lack of institutional k
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