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Everything posted by Ankylus

  1. We just returned from Philmont yesterday. One of our crews had a scout who nearly lost an eye to a limb after retrieving a bear bag in the dark. (One observation this time is that Philmont consistently chooses the bears over the scouts. Another is that some of the back country staff are getting arrogant.) We are still waiting to see how badly the eye is damaged. He apparently won't lose the eye, but will lose the tear duct. He's 14....that's a long time with a dry eye. Our sister crew climbed the Tooth of Time to spread the ashes of two ASMs who were killed at Northern Tier last year
  2. I do believe my oldest son's first patrol leader was the son of a billionaire. The father was at the time a CEO of a major corporation you would know the name of and is now currently CEO of another very large corporation. He was also on the national Board of Directors for the Boy Scouts of America as well as a couple of other Fortune 50 companies. The mother is from a wealthy family and went to Punahou School with President Obama. If they weren't billionaires, then I don't know any. There were, in fact, several millionaires' children in that troop. And there is a troop where this city'
  3. Thank you, both for the link and the kind words. We will see to this.
  4. This morning I attended the funeral of one of our first year scouts who died tragically on a family vacation. The family asked the troop members and leaders to wear their uniforms to the funeral. His death will be a loss to the troop and not just his family. He was a good scout and will be missed. We will probably do something at the troop level, like hang up a memorial in the scout house or something like that. My question is whether there is some kind of posthumous or honorary award, recognition, rank advancement or something like that available from within the scouting program? The
  5. Yes. Houston. There are a LOT of Baptist churches within 20 miles of me. Church of Christ....no doubt...as well as the other Pentecostal denominations. But in general, Pentecostal denominations aren't even as strong as supporters as the Baptists were.
  6. OK. As a term of art, you are correct. I was using it in the vernacular sense. I concede that point. What about the rest of the points I raise?
  7. No, I am not forgetting that girls are appealing to boys. And we all know that boys have no other place they can meet girls. Not in school, not in church, not at the ballpark, nope...no place at all to meet girls in this culture. The old, "well, everyone else is doing it", excuse. No dispute that every other scouting program is doing it in the world. (Not precisely accurate, but close enough.) (1) we shouldn't be interested in being like everyone else, (2) we shouldn't care what everyone else is doing--we should care what works for our children, (3) it may work, but would it work better ot
  8. Here are three ways: the acceptance of openly gay leaders, the admission of openly gay boys, and the admission of "trans boys". My source is my personal observation. Every Baptist church within 20 miles of where I sit did not recharter within 2 years of the acceptance of gay leaders. Also, although not as strong as my statement: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/31/us/boy-scouts-transgender-policy.html https://www.dallasnews.com/life/faith/2013/06/05/some-churches-severing-ties-to-boy-scouts-over-allowing-gay-youths https://baptistnews.com/article/churches-drop-boy-scout-ties
  9. OK. All I know is that every Baptist church within perhaps 20 miles of where I am sitting did not recharter their troops. Maybe its different where you are. But they certainly pulled out here.
  10. To me the loss of LDS is not remarkable so much for the loss in membership or revenues as it is two other factors. The first is that as BSA continues succumbing to pressure from the political left to change it's program, it will continue to alienate a lot of it's faith-based partners. The Baptists left a couple of years ago. LDS is starting to leave. And there is another thread about how some Roman Catholic dioceses are booting the Girl Scouts for moving to far to the left, and I don't believe they will hesitate to do the same to BSA. The second is that this, in turn, will cause BSA t
  11. This brings me back around to--what is BSA's core mission? Is it simply to expand membership? Is it to provide jobs and retirement for the professionals? Is it to serve as a proving ground social justice warrior agendas? Is it to teach boys leadership and outdoor skills? What is the core mission? My understanding is that it is to teach boys leadership and outdoor skills. If that is so, then they have made so many missteps that it is hard to tally them all. If we are to infer the core mission from their actions rather than their words, then what would that be? I still think they
  12. I agree that the professionals are all about the metrics, and that it will lead to coed membership eventually. Perhaps not in 2018, but probably within 5 years at most. And that will be the death knell of BSA. Because once girls become a part of the demographic and they start running the numbers, they will begin changing the program to appeal more to girls. Which will make it less appealing to boys. And eventually it will find a steady state where it appeals to some groups of boys and girls both, but it won't be anything like BSA today. And, IMHO, it will be much less of a program. Especi
  13. It is a sad fact of life that any organization over time begins to exist for itself and those who comprise its bureaucracy rather than those it ostensibly is formed to serve. Over time it will manifest a will to survive rather then to serve, or profit, or whatever is supposed mission is. BSA had a better run than most.
  14. You may very well be right. But national is not prepared for that and assume LDS will be there. Scouting may be better off, but it will have to survive LDS' departure, first.
  15. One overlooked point is that a lot of LDS boys join BSA because LDS tells them to do so. "This is a good organization for boys, and you should join it." And so they do. Will some of the boys stay in BSA outside of LDS units? Undoubtedly. But I bet most of them will leave for whatever church-approved activity is next promoted by LDS. Most of those boys are gone.
  16. That's all well and good. Out of curiosity, which "civic organizations" and "'friends of' organizations" do you think those might be? I mean, national needs to find these organizations ASAP. It seems to me that if those organizations were inclined to support BSA, they already would be. And, among the organizations you identify, which will step up sufficiently to fill this hole left by LDS? I don't think anything is wrong with your opinion, except that I really doubt that church's anywhere use BSA for their "youth group". Oh, that, and it flies in the face of reality. But what is t
  17. That's what they said on the Titanic.
  18. Yes, and so it begins. To date, national has chosen the least painful path. They were fools if they thought it would have no consequences. So now it's all pain all the time. I am not inclined to increase my level of commitment in time or in money given the direction of the program, and so they can go find some new sources for those things. “A coward dies a thousand times before his death, but the valiant taste of death but once. It seems to me most strange that men should fear, seeing that death, a necessary end, will come when it will come.â€â€• William Shakespeare, Julius Caesar
  19. Thank you for the story and the pictures. It looks like a wonderful adventure for your scouts. There is actually a train called the "Narrow Gauge Railway" that runs between the towns of Durango and Silverton in Colorado. Every time I have been on it (twice?) they have stopped midway to let backpackers off the train or pick up backpackers waiting on the train. I understand it is by special arrangement beforehand. Kind of neat, actually, and a good way to get into the back country. Not to mention both Durango and Silverton are nice visits. http://www.durangotrain.com
  20. I did not mean to imply any such motivation for your troop. I apologize if it came across that way. I agree that there can be legitimate reasons for that policy. But this troop actually told us this when we were shopping troops coming out of Webelos. They habitually add requirements for advancement. In addition to requiring Cooking MB prior to national, it's not enough to tie a bowline, for example. You have to tie it one handed. It's not enough to be able to tie all the required knots. You have to tie them in some shortened time period, like 10s of seconds. They require youth to not
  21. I like it! But it seems to possess a lot of untapped potential. Somewhat larger, camp names, trails...it could be both a real tool and something to hang on the wall or put on a tabletop.
  22. Take a look at the photograph of young Maggie Momen about halfway through the article. You have to "load more" a couple of times. https://pjmedia.com/homeland-security/2017/05/09/exclusive-visiting-the-site-of-the-december-coptic-church-suicide-bombing-in-cairo/ Beautiful picture of a scout.
  23. We have a local troop that prides itself on producing "uber scouts". They intentionally limit all weekend camping to one night to purposefully retard scouts progress in earning Camping merit Badge. (They also required Cooking for Eagle years and years before national made it Eagle-required.) What with the over-scheduling of youngsters these days, it did make it more difficult.
  24. I find this interesting. We have people transfer in and out all the time. Most of that is because a lot of the parents are in the oil industry, and those folks move around a lot. So personal feelings are not an issue in those circumstances. But even on those occasions where there is a transfer between local troops, we have never experienced any issues on a personal level. Everybody has always acted maturely and responsibly. A couple of things I have not seen mentioned, though. The first is that it is my experience that the old troop is not always real worried about transferring records
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