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Posts posted by Pselb

  1. On 4/2/2018 at 9:29 PM, Pselb said:

    And everyone jumped on the band wagon of the current circus and lo and behold, after all the changes, it ain't a circus anymore.....  And when all the dust clears, one will quickly realize that what's left isn't Boy Scouts anymore. 


    It's called Fuzzy Logic.  Scoop up a handful of sand.  You now have a "handful of sand".  Take off a grain.  Do you still have a "handful of sand"?  Deep doing that and at what point does it NOT become a "handful of sand"?  If the Boy Scouts keep making changes at what point is it no longer BOY Scouts of America?  From what is being discussed on the forum the question becomes more and more relevant. 

  2. On 3/14/2018 at 8:48 PM, Pselb said:

    If an organization doesn't have the resources to run the program, why does it think it has the right to continue?  Businesses go out of business every day.  Organizations close down all the time.  Churches stand vacant all around the country.  It's the cycle of life.  Things come and go.  Why in the world does BSA think it is exempt from such things anymore than General Motors thought itself to be too big to fail at one time.  Maybe with the emphasis on adult involvement, adult volunteerism, etc. the boys think it's dorky and not fun and too expensive, could it be said that the organization is really not in a position any longer to sustain itself?

    What started out as a simple outside observation seems to have taken on a life of its own.  However, in spite of the many commenters trying to patch the hole in the hull of a sinking ship, the observation holds true.  While I don't spend much time on the forum sorting through the thousands of comments, there all seems to be a general wave of reaction of "trying to fix" what wasn't broken.  I'll use my original analogy of General Motors.  For years they were a proud member of the Big Three car companies in America.  They could do no wrong and they knew it.  They were riding high.  

    But then the Japanese figured out how to make cars and the competition began to take it's toll.  First Chrysler faltered, then GM.  The dropped models like hot potatoes while the foreign companies added more and more.  Ford on the other hand just kept doing what it always did and surprisingly they survived and stayed in the running.  They did not change the way they did business "to meet the demands  of the market".   Neither did they feel the need to "fix" anything.  They just stayed doing what they did best, they made cars and trucks.

    So BSA instead of keeping doing what they did best, they started making changes, or should it be better phrased as "trying to out guess" the crystal ball of a fickle marketplace.  Then of course they doubled down when they thought it appropriate.

    So there are some here that feel it necessary to double down on the gender/sexual orientation issue, while others raise their bet on females in the program.  Others are doing for the retro look and the Charger/Challenger and Camaro is dragged out off  storage and dusted off. (Ever wonder why the Mustang has always been around?  I  don't.)  And before you know it, everyone has tossed their 2-cents worth of pine needles into the fire.  A lot of smoke, but no  real heat.  

    So the observation holds true... What was Chevrolet doing in 1957 that it isn't doing today?  What was BSA doing in 1957 that it isn't doing today?  Did the world change or did General Motors/BSA?  Or what is Ford doing in 1964 1/2  that it is still doing today?  What was GM''s market share relative to Toyota/Honda as BSA's market share with every other youth program in the market place now?

    Sure there are a few of the diie-hard outdoor enthusiasts still out there, but they are not the same as it were in past years.  Most of those "outdoor" people really are nothing more than trans-placed suburbanites in an RV park, where their army surplus equipment is replaced with 5th wheels, Class-A's and high priced gas grills on the patio.

    So, has the world changed?  I'm sure you would get two different answers depending on whether you are talking to a GM Vice President and that of a Ford Vice President.  

    Stand back and look at the big picture, the hole in the hull isn't going to go away anytime soon. 


  3. If an organization doesn't have the resources to run the program, why does it think it has the right to continue?  Businesses go out of business every day.  Organizations close down all the time.  Churches stand vacant all around the country.  It's the cycle of life.  Things come and go.  Why in the world does BSA think it is exempt from such things anymore than General Motors thought itself to be too big to fail at one time.  Maybe with the emphasis on adult involvement, adult volunteerism, etc. the boys think it's dorky and not fun and too expensive, could it be said that the organization is really not in a position any longer to sustain itself?

    • Confused 1

  4. Okay, time for a dumb question.  I've been lurking for some time now and recently gotten a bit active,   I notice I get that little bell at the top of the forum page that lets me know of things going on that are focused at me.  If I get quoted, no problem.  When I quote others, I'm sure they get the same bell notification, but how does one get those highlighted names to make notifications appear to just that person.  I noticed my name gets highlighted and I get notified, but how do I do it the other way and someone else gets highlighted and notified?  I know this should be under the technical section, but this campfire seems to be a bit friendlier of a place to ask dumb questions.

  5. I will not jump the gun, but my son might. :) 

    If there is an all-male option on the table it will be taken into consideration.  If not, the choice will be made for him.  As parents, we offered up the Cub Scout program to him because WE thought the idea of a boys' group would be a good thing for him.  At least it got him away from his two sisters for a while.  He's enjoyed it and continues to want to go back for each meeting and some of the other activities.  As the program changes and he matures, that might change.  I have no crystal ball at this point.  As parents, we will support him in whatever he decides. 

  6. If given a choice between multiple options, I believe that my son's choices would be all-male scout camps, co-ed church, and co-ed YMCA type camps.  As the only all-male alternative has gone away, it no longer provides a different experience than the other two.  At this point, I'm thinking my son would opt for the church's Bible camp.  It's outdoors, program focused and all-male off the table and all-male is no longer a choice issue and drops off the options list as it has in all other aspects in today's society.  If there were other all-male options out there and it was important to him, it would be a strong consideration.  Yes, he's only one boy, but I would assume there are others out there like him, too small in numbers to have any voice in the matter.  But as I said, if it's important to him, he'll find his way to find it.

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  7. While my son is only at the Cub Scout level, he is enjoying the program as it has been for the past 3 years he has attended.  It is a good opportunity for him to build social skills outside of home-schooling.  However, with that being said, the co-ed option might be a bit of a problem in that he is out-numbered 2 to 1 with his siblings at home.  Now much of that can be easily chalked up to sibling rivalry, but I don't think it is a big draw to continue that experience outside the home.  While my wife and I draw the line at blood and bruises, it is still a struggle at times.  While it is good for him to socialize in a co-educational environment, it may not be something that he is going to seek out as an activity option.  I don't know when or if that will ever change.  I'm sure it will, but the timing will be his choice in the long run.

  8. I see it every day in my classroom.  In class it's co-ed, but the guys have his strange tendency to migrate to the sports world of all-male teams because it's "cool" to be a guy.    Students who have issues of boy/girl (co-ed) outside of class who don't get involved in sports have a tendency to do the old LAN-Gamer gatherings type of activities.  The gals who don't do the segregated sports get more involved in the shopping and sleepover types of activities.  And for most of the others, they continue to do the co-ed activities outside of class. 

    Taking that one step further beyond the reach of the schools, there's always gang related activity which for the most part are gender segregated, but mostly it's a male issue.  With the breakdown of the traditional family, the options for youth are becoming a confusing time for these kids.

    Nothing scientific about those observations, just a few years of teaching at a high school level.

  9. "Adventure" is what you make out of any life experience.  Most aren't planned and not many of them expensive.  On our family trip to Yellowstone, it was quite an adventure.  They had warned us about the bears and such.  But what they didn't say was that at night in certain campgrounds, the buffalo like to bed down for the night among the campsites.  We didn't put 2 and 2 together when we felt lucky to find an open campsite.  As a matter of fact the campground still had plenty of sites later in the afternoon.  I guess that meant there was that much more room for the buffalo.  It is unfortunate that my kids are home-schooled, because they would have had a great "show-and-tell" opportunity the next fall.  Instead they had settle for taking a ton of pictures and have a story to tell their grandchildren.

    And I need to add that the wife's adventure was all the beautiful fields of wild flowers.  She and the kids insisted I stop every so often so they could go out and identify them because they were different than the ones back home.  Whenever someone sees wild animals in the park, a huge temporary parking lot appears along side the road and the question asked is: "What do you see?"  Here the wife and kids are knee deep in the beauty of a mountain meadow in full bloom and these people couldn't see it.   As I said, adventure is what you make out of any life experience.

  10. When it comes to safety, it is assumed that it falls under the category of common sense. 

    The problem with that statement is that it is based on an assumption and that sense is common.

    And we all know what the true meaning of the word "assume" means. 

    if safety was not an issue, why do organizations like OSHA even exist?

    How in the world do people who do motivational safety seminars make a living at it?

    For those who don't think safety is worth knowing as much as possible about it, make sure your insurance policy is up-to-date, have a good lawyer on retention, and keep your cell phone handy with 911 programed at the top of your contacts list.

  11. Wouldn't a girl with any sense, who wants to go to this thing World Jamboree, just join the older co-ed program and avoid the hassle of breaking the glass sealing of an all boys' program first?  Sounds a bit weak as an excuse for all the maladies that seem to be going around lately.  But then I'm not savvy to all the fine points of how all this works.  

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  12. Well, they could have done it at the Centennial year, they could have done it at any time regardless of what is going on at the time and the reaction would be the same, but the coincidental excuse would be the only thing different.  And no, they could have probably picked a better time to do it "worse".  There's been just about any time from inception until now that the could have done worse.  If you were going on a long trip, when would be the best time to have an accident?  :)  Well, everyone I've ever talked to never planned on even having one, but it happens.

    ...and when it does it does it at the worst possible time.

  13. Or maybe a couple of camps work together to alternate so the kids get more variety of camps to pick from depending on which week they can go. Or the camps alternate boy weeks with girl weeks.  I for one don't go back to the same state parks and camp in the same campsite every summer on the same week, (but alas, it's the same family that tags along.)  It never occurred to me to even do that.  There's got to be alternatives that deviate a bit from the same old story that might be interesting for the kids. 

    A teacher that teaches one grade and does the same field trip every year for 15 years is not the same experience that a student would have if he were to go on the same field trip from first grade through high school even if it was the Smithsonian.

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  14. 2 minutes ago, SSF said:

    Sounds like censorship and thougt policing; i.e. the only views and opinions that are accepted are those of the ruling party, the all powerful BSA in this case

    Feel free to downvote me

    But that's the way it has been for every other step in human history.  The strong and powerful makes up the rules as they go along.  Name one point in time that that wasn't the case.  So why would BSA be any different than the rest of the world?

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  15. Okay,  I'm a history teacher and let's try this on to see if it fits.  At one point sports was an all-male activity.  The first Olympics didn't have any females.  So over the past "few" years, that has changed.  And it did so incrementally.  I suppose there was some hand-wringing and gnashing of teeth when women first began to compete in a "few" more genteel competitions.  Then some crept in even before the BC/AD timeline.  Over time more and more were added on an ever increasing pace until we reach today.   But then along with women's sports, women's involvement in technology, industry and a ton of other advancements took off in the past 300 years.

    So Scouts starts out all-boy at a snail's pace, then we break the ice with Den MOTHERS in Cubs, then high school aged gals in the co-ed program, sprinkle in the female Boy scout leaders, time marches on.  Whether it be sports, education, business, or the professional world, it's all the same "slippery slope."   It hasn't been that long in our own history women have gone from land-owning to voting, etc.  The same holds true for cultural and social "advancements". 

    So when viewing the grand scheme of things, why does this whole situation of girls in scouting come along as any big surprise?  People may not like it, but they have never been able to stop it's progression through time.

    Kicking and screaming, though it be, the one redeeming factor in this whole issue is: human kind has been able to adapt to the changes and eventually accepted them.  We in our own little timeline of existence only see a very small fraction of the change, the last few seconds of an age-old timeline and for some reason seemed so surprised that it is happening as if it were a brand new event in the course of human history.   Or even in this case scouting history.  A quick cursory look at scouting, I think Mrs. Powell had already started the ball rolling right from the beginning with a "parallel" program of Girl Guides. 

    This internet research is a lot easier than doing it with old encyclopedias and dusty libraries.... :)


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  16. A few years back when I was in college, my roommate was gay.  I am a conservative Christian.  Major worlds apart.  It was a rocky start, but we both worked it out to the point where we actually became good friends in spite of our differences.  The time we finally realized it was when we were going on some trip someplace.  He was driving and I was navigating.   This was before GPS and Google Maps, so I had the old paper map out trying to figure out how to get to where we needed to be.  We came to an intersection that was not clearly marked on the map and he yelled, "Which way?  Which way?"  I in my panic and at the last minute I yelled back at him, "Go straight! Go Straight!".  After the dust settled and he smiled and said, "My Dad's been telling me that for years."

    Sometimes our differences are what makes us better. 

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  17. Wow, I step away for a few minutes to do my day job and a ton of stuff happens.

    Okay, I'm going to put my outside observer glasses on an pose a few ideas.

    1) This thing called national has made changes to the program.  It is ASSUMED that this was to make things better, either in numbers of scouts or cash flow, take your pick.  Both sides have speculated for either, or, or both.

    2) This is followed closely by the rank and file with a whole ton of ASSUMPTIONS as to what is going to happen and who's going to quit, what all the problems are going to be, how the structure of the program will look like, right down to the number of toilets at summer camp.

    3) So those ASSUMING the change is inevitable and all the myriad of problems are merely bumps in the road,  take the high ground and those that don't like it are told to leave.

    4) I'm going to ASSUME that no one really knows what's going on from the top to the bottom but it is bringing out the worst in everybody in most cases.  The scout law (I had to borrow my son's book) where it refers to such things as idealized courteous, kind,  helpful,  cheerful are put on a back burner for the moment while we discuss the real nature of the issues.  We can get back to them after the dust has settled.

    As a school teacher, one must have a set of lesson plans that take quite a bit of time to set up based on the textbook used in class.  After a while the job gets pretty easy doing the copy/paste routine each year until the school board changes textbooks.  Back to square one.  So what's it going to be?  Rally the troops in protest? Complain to somebody?  Go for viral status on Facebook? move to a school where they haven't changed textbooks since 1909? or are you going to start all over and do the best you can with the new situation?  And surprisingly enough, you can't do a dang thing about it until you get the new book.  I don't think that with all the assumptions floating around, the boy scout playbook has been made available yet.

    Yep, there will be new people coming in and old people going out.  There will be those who dump their development in the program and Eagle Mill marathon to an early exit.  The Old Guard will throw up their hands in disgust and leave unless they have grandchildren they want to push through quickly for the Gran Prix Eagle, thus maintaining the family tradition of Eagles.

    And the list goes on and on ad nauseum.

    I sure hope this all quiets down in the next couple of years when my son gets to Boy Scouts because he seems to be enjoying what he has at the moment.  I don't think (and I'm assuming, yes) that it probably make a bit of difference to him because he doesn't have a long-standing tradition of anything in the program having been in it for now the third year.    It seriously concerns me that he might become disillusioned with Cub Scouts, and Boy Scouts and join something like 4-H and I have to put up with a pig in the back yard he's raising for competition at the state fair.