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The Latin Scot

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Everything posted by The Latin Scot

  1. The Latin Scot

    Bear Claws

    Bear claws? Bear claws? Bear Claus?
  2. The Latin Scot

    Service hours

    BSA policy has never prohibited using hours helping with an Eagle project being used towards advancement as well. The only guideline from the Guide to Advancement is this, from section 4.2.3.6 So while it's encouraged to pose these questions to Scouts and discuss these ideals with them, there is NO REQUIREMENT prohibiting nor demanding the same. This article also addresses the issue in the last part of the Q & A: https://scoutingmagazine.org/2017/02/ok-complete-two-advancement-requirements-one-activity/
  3. The Latin Scot

    Totin/ whittling Chip

    My gracious. I dread the possibility that a person like this might actually be a Den Leader working with children.
  4. The Latin Scot

    Bear Claws

    How affordable is affordable? Here are two options the Scout Store offers; a can opener is actually a pretty standard accessory. I've never owned a pocketknife that didn't have one: https://www.scoutshop.org/catalog/product/view/id/4093 https://www.scoutshop.org/catalog/product/view/id/3412 Admittedly they're not as cheap as the $6 option, but as long as you have one can opener you can still teach them how to use it.
  5. The Latin Scot

    Time line from Scout to Eagle

    I apologize if my comments came off as severe in places, but I write what I do because I feel it is important. The last sentence of my previous message demands the context of the rest of the post. Please note that most of what I wrote was positive, not critical. And I agree with you utterly; adults should support and provide programing that allows Scouts to move at whatever pace they wish, of their own accord.
  6. The Latin Scot

    Time line from Scout to Eagle

    HOWEVER Let it be noted that it is not bad to want to earn your Eagle sooner rather than later, and there are many, MANY boys who earn the rank of Eagle Scout at 14, even 13, and who continue their Scouting adventure, appreciate fully the significance of their rank, and go on to have wonderful Scouting adventures later on in life. Earning your Eagle at 14 is an impressive feat, and should be honored, not derided. For many decades that was the average age of most Eagle Scouts. Not only that, but for every 17 year-old who goes on to finally earn his Eagle and has a wonderful tale to tell about it, there are a dozen more who only wait because they are lazy or distracted, and their parents or committee make a mad dash to 'help' him earn it, ending up with a 17 year-old who really didn't care about it until, at the last minute, people told him he should. And that's not to speak of the thousands besides who never even get that far. Every Scout is different, and age is a very poor determinant of the quality of one's character or the authenticity of one's experience. The best Scouts I know right now are the little band of 13 and 14 year-olds of the Troop into which my Webelos Den feeds, all former members of my Den, who joined already eager to lead and camp and advance and everything Scouting has to offer them. Their energy and excitement is palpable; in the few short years they have been in the program they have completely reinvigorated our Troop, and the lot of them will earn the rank of Eagle by their 14th, or latest, 15th birthdays. And they are as dedicated as any 17 year-old. Their youth is no hindrance to their learning, and they are model Scouts - just a bit shorter is all. As a 14 year-old Eagle myself, I want to make sure we remember that many boys are simply more motivated as zesty 14 year-olds than they are when they become busy 17 year-olds, and there is nothing wrong with encouraging the young ones to earn their Eagles early on, and then to become the leaders of new boys in the future. Yes, I understand that many times it's the parents who do the pushing, and advancement is a method of Scouting, not an aim. But if the boy simply loves Scouting, and wants to challenge himself by setting goals and working hard to achieve them, and if, as seems to be the case with @scoutboy, the Scout is entirely self-motivated, then we should encourage him to meet his goals, not attempt to change his mind. Every Scout is different. @scoutboy wants to challenge himself; that's great. Let's help him make it a meaningful experience, not try to change the experience itself.
  7. The Latin Scot

    New Scouts BSA marketing video

    I am sorry you have decided to misinterpret my comments so insistently, but it is not your place to make such a request of me. I have been decidedly on-topic, but unfortunately you don't seem to like my opinions and you want me to take them elsewhere. So I will do you one better. I will leave this thread entirely without adding further comments of my own. However, I request that my comments NOT be moved to some other thread, because they express my feelings on the video shared - exactly on-topic. They belong here, in this discussion, not in some other thread - I have the right to express an opposing point of view, haven't I? I want to make it clear that I do NOT like the video. That is absolutely fair. So, we will both win - you can perpetuate your feelings in this thread now without fear that I will oppose them, but my I ask that my comments remain so that my thoughts about the topic are known, which is very important to me. However, it is now my turn to make a request - please do not tell me where I should post anything again when you are in no position to do so. I know where my thoughts belong, and anyway that is not your privilege; there are moderators here for a reason, and they have a much clearer, more objective sense of what should transpire on these forums than either of us. And in any case I shan't oblige you, much as I should love to be more accommodating to your sensitivities. So now, that will be the last of my comments here; discuss the video at your leisure free from my troubling opinions. Sadly, that is what I had been trying to do all along.
  8. The Latin Scot

    New Scouts BSA marketing video

    You fundamentally misunderstand my comments, and I must confess I feel as though you are drawing out false statements about my posts while putting words and ideas into my ideology that are not my own, all of which is equally off-topic when compared to with words as you perceive them. I do not want to debate opinions, ideology, or viewpoints. I am explaining how I feel about the video. That will inherently include how it makes me feel about the direction Scouting is going. I have no desire to debate anything; in fact I would prefer to avoid such discussion. It's plain that not everybody will like the video, and not everybody will hate it. But we must be willing to hear both sides - those who like it, AND those who hate it. And I do note that you haven't expressed concern over those with positive reactions to it, only mine, which oppose your views. That is not fair. Eliminate my comments and you must therefore eliminate any positive perceptions as well. Are you prepared to do that?
  9. The Latin Scot

    New Scouts BSA marketing video

    I am not talking about masculinity. You missed the point of my earlier comment, so I will make it clear for you. I am talking about Scouting, and what this video is trying to communicate about it. This video wants people to believe that the program of Scouting, as it currently exists, will have just the same effect on girls as it does on boys. I think that is absolutely false. I think the video is an attempt to convince parents that the traditional Scouting program can be made to fit girls just as well as it fits boys. But I believe girls and boys are inherently different, and a program that has been developed over a hundred years to match the nature of how boys learn and develop will not yield the same benefits for young women as it does for young men. So I am saddened by a video that uses values that are desirable for both - curiosity, exploration, boldness, et cetera - to suggest that the PROGRAM by which these values are taught will work just as well for one as it does for the other. I don't believe that. I find the video manipulative, and I don't agree with its agenda. I think it is perpetuating the lie that boys and girls are the same, or worse, interchangeable. A pretty, colorful video with trite music and a few sunny faces is a poor mask for the ulterior motives which I believe underlie its creation. But it is very craftily made - sincere young ladies having a wonderful adventure, 'fun,' kitschy music, adventure, beautiful vistas - this film was very carefully crafted to elicit a response. As a marketing tool, it is extremely effective and well-thought-out. And that's just what I find so frustrating about it. I am sure it will be effective in drawing in many families who subscribe to the ideology behind it, a line of thinking I cannot endorse because I love Scouting too much to accept it. It's hard to watch an organization you love go off the rails, but that's just what I am grieving when I see this kind of marketing ploy. I apologize if some find this offensive. But I can't apologize for what I feel is right. And again, this is not off-topic. This thread is about the video, and that is exactly what I am discussing here.
  10. The Latin Scot

    New Scouts BSA marketing video

    I don't even have words to express how upsetting it is to see videos like this trying to make the admittance of girls into Scouting look like some wonderful thing. And the mess it has caused with Youth Protection issues is only the tip of the iceberg; the organization of the Boy Scouts of America is coming apart at the seams, and there is no uniform on Earth that will withstand the impending troubles that I forsee coming to it down the road. Every time I see a video, advertisement or promotional image of girls in Scout uniforms, my stomach knots up. I believe in Scouting. I believe it has the power to save boys from a world that increasingly wants to demean, disenfranchise, and even destroy the masculine identity. But I do not believe the Boy Scouts of America will survive that battle as it opens the doors of its membership too wide, letting in agendas that will only harm the young men of our nation. And as it loses that original, deeply traditional vision of Scouting For Boys, which for over one hundred years it managed to preserve, it will eventually lose the power it once wielded to effect such tremendous good in our society. Scouting works, but it has to be done right. The BSA caved to public outcry, and the mobocracy of public outcry and media rhetoric will continue to warp the fabric of its nature until eventually it will no longer be a Scouting organization - just a generic youth one. Girls deserve the best we have to offer. Boys do too. But Scouting cannot serve two masters, and as the needs of boys and girls demand very different approaches to best nurture their very different natures, it will be impossible for Scouting to serve them both equally. I am sure my comments will be attacked and challenged. I care little. Truth is not subjective, and I hold too it, regardless of whatever rhetoric or public opinions may be tossed my way. From the Handbook: "A Scout is brave. A Scout can face danger although he is afraid. He has the courage to stand for what he thinks is right even if others laugh at him or threaten him."
  11. The Latin Scot

    Materials in Spanish?

    Greetings all! Does anybody know of any good sources for getting training materials, forms or applications in Spanish? I have been asked to train leaders in our Latin American community more and more often, and all I have are a few old handbooks and den leader guides in Spanish, which are hardly sufficient to really facilitate training for new leaders working with Spanish-speaking youth. If anybody has any resources they can suggest, I would appreciate it greatly. Otherwise I will just have to translate everything myself, which is fine except for the time it takes to do it right. I will gladly take any suggestions (except for Google Translate, which barely translates anything correctly so please don't suggest it hahaha).
  12. The Latin Scot

    Materials in Spanish?

    Yes, I've seen those, but almost none of the award applications, planning resources, or other really helpful materials are available in Spanish at the moment. Looks like I'll be spending this weekend doing more translating ...
  13. The Latin Scot

    Must you have an "official" uniform to salute the flag?

    Nope. I'm saying you should be clever and come up with solutions to get every boy into the best uniform possible! Collect old uniforms, do more fundraising, start a uniform exchange - be creative! I have many economically-challenged families in my Den, so we have to think of all kinds of innovative solutions to get every boy into a complete uniform - but we do it, and the boys look AND FEEL great! A Scout is thrifty, so think of solutions! But don't accept mediocrity. And I have NEVER heard of any boy, girl or leader complaining that the uniform pants are ANY less comfortable than jeans. How are they so terribly uncomfortable? They're normal pants! Or shorts, which I find infinitely more comfortable than any jeans in the world. These are subjective, flimsy arguments that are still centered on one's self rather than the movement as a whole, let alone the den as a body. And yeah, the pants are going to get dusty, even dirty - that's Scouting! We're outside! We get dirty, and then we go home and wash them up! Really, these are not difficult principles, but we are so accustomed to making ourselves happy that we lose opportunities to make ourselves BETTER. The uniforms help us to reverse that inward focus and look beyond ourselves towards our dens, our troops, and our communities.
  14. The Latin Scot

    Does the Universal Emblem patch still exist?

    My Scout Shop still has tons of them available if you feel like making a trip to Southern California.
  15. The Latin Scot

    Is BSA adult leader training necessary?

    I am also a relatively young leader who has been in Scouting since I was a Cub Scout. I got my Eagle when I was 14 and have read more manuals, guidebooks and articles on Scouting that you could shake a stick at - but I still value any opportunity I have to learn more and hear from other leaders' experiences to broaden my perspectives. That's why I come to this site - to learn more and gain from the wisdom of as many people as I can. I would never be so bold as to presume that I "have Scouting down," that I know everything or that I "don't need" more training. That would be arrogant and false on my part; everybody has a lot to learn. That said, it has to be done within the parameters of your personal schedule and availability. Woodbadge is a big time commitment. I haven't taken it, but I have read the course materials and tried to learn from those who have. You could do similarly. And yes, you will likely be attending more trainings throughout your Scouting career, but you should go with an open mind and ready to learn. If you do, you always will. If you go assuming you know everything, then you'll just end up frustrated and missing out on chances for you to grow. And who knows? Maybe they'll start asking you to teach at a future training meeting. That happened to me, and now I'm teaching Cub Leaders all over the county, and using the things I have learned to help others. Keep your mind open and your heart willing, and you'll gain something from every course you take.
  16. The Latin Scot

    SE Revoking Membership's

    I have never heard of this kind of extremism in a SE before, but it sounds like it's already pretty out of control. He has no right to make that threat, let alone carry it out. I would recommend possibly writing a letter of concern to the higher-up powers in your area carefully alerting them to the situation (in precise but measured tones) and asking how you can help rectify it.
  17. The Latin Scot

    Must you have an "official" uniform to salute the flag?

    This is exactly the kind of mentality we want to prevent. We don't want Scouts to ignore the uniform just because they aren't comfortable in it, and many of those people who have become too attached to their jeans may have even more to learn from the correct uniform than the boys themselves. We expect these kids to mature, and to learn to do things not for themselves, but for others. I have a friend who is a Marine, and I once had him come and speak to my Scouts about his uniform and how he feels about it. He appeared in full dress uniform, and he looked INCREDIBLE. It was clean; it was sharp; it was powerful. One of the boys asked him if his uniform was uncomfortable - he said yes, it was - but that he felt strong and brave when he wore it, and that was worth any personal discomfort on his part. He talked about how close and unified he was with his fellow marines because they saw each other as being brothers in the same cause, and that he was able to make better choices when he stood side by side with his fellow patriots in their uniforms, all paying attention to the tiniest details because it made them feel like one united body of brothers. The Scout uniform can do that very same thing. And as leaders, we have a duty to set the example.
  18. The Latin Scot

    Must you have an "official" uniform to salute the flag?

    I must respectfully disagree. I find that most people who defend wearing jeans with the uniform are those who insist that we mainstream what is an inherently casual garment, and I don't believe that supporting, or worse, endorsing, the slow slide towards 'casual Scouting' is a move worthy of our consideration. There is a legitimate psychological effect underlying the reason we wear official Scout pants or shorts in place of jeans, an effect that comes from (among other things) color, fabric, and our vision. See, the eye automatically makes connections through color - red lights mean stop, blue skies mean clear weather, orange and black make us think of Halloween. Our eyes trigger memories and connections that we associate with things we know, and they affect how we feel, act or react. The Boy Scout uniform does that very thing when worn correctly; the khaki and olive combination generates an instinctive recognition in the minds of those who are even vaguely familiar with Scouting, a recognition that is associated with service, good deeds, helping old ladies across the street, et cetera. However, blue jeans disrupt that mental response; whether we realize it or not, those who are familiar with the uniform recognize when something is off. That is especially true with blue denim; our cultural perception of jeans is still one of casual or work wear, and when worn with the Scout shirt, then no matter how "clean or free of holes" the jeans may be, they will elicit a different effect. The very obvious color and fabric deviations inherent in blue denim are glaringly obvious even from a long distance. This isn't saying people will disdain the first Scout they see in jeans, nor even that they will disapprove of it - but there IS a different response to the boy in a shirt and jeans when compared to the boy in full uniform,.The one may garner recognition, but the other will generate a greater respect. I am sure there will be all kinds of comments to dispute this, and perhaps this is off topic considering the nature of this thread - but I feel it's important that I say it anyway. Now, in some parts of the country people may have acclimated themselves to the lesser effect of the 'shirt n' jeans combo meal', but as Scout leaders we shouldn't be so quick to accept a lesser standard in response. If a business or law department allows that kind of deviation that is their business. But the Boy Scouts of America very clearly specifies what our standards are. As Scouters we should exemplify a higher law - the idea that just because something is accepted doesn't mean it's the best choice. That's how we become comfortable with mediocrity, and we should expect more than that from our Scouts and from ourselves. There is good, and there is better, and there is best. And what do we teach our youngest Scouts? Do your best.
  19. The Latin Scot

    Must you have an "official" uniform to salute the flag?

    Wow this thread is old! But I think it's important to add one of my favorite B.P. quotes here: “Smartness in uniform and correctness in detail may seem a small matter, but has its value in the development of self-respect and means an immense deal to the reputation of the movement among outsiders who judge by what they see.” I am now a Scout leader working with the same Pack and Troop I was part of as a youth, and were ALWAYS lax about uniforms. But as I progressed as a leader and came to understand the program more deeply, I realized that the way the boys dressed directly affected the way the boys felt, which ultimately affected they way they behaved. I made a push that has gone on for three years now, a push to get every boy properly uniformed despite economic challenges, apathetic leadership, or misunderstood intentions. And WOW - what a difference it has made! Our numbers have increased! Advancement has taken off! Boy are more excited, more energized, and more committed! Suddenly when we go to Summer Camp and Camporee and Scout-O-Rama, the boys actively participate in all the activities, and they feel passion for what they are doing. There is a lot more than just good uniforming behind all this, of course - but I can promise you, wearing the uniforms right, as a unified Troop, boys and leaders - it has made a massive difference. Whether or not wearing half a uniform is "allowed" or not is irrelevant. The uniform should be worn as a whole, or not at all. That's official policy. If a guy in a police shirt and bermuda shorts asked you to stop so he could write you a ticket, wouldn't you think it odd? If a businessman showed up to an important meeting in a bathrobe and slippers, would he be taken seriously? How we dress sends a message, whether we like it or not. It sends a message to those around us, and it sends a message to ourselves. That is why we want to stress smart, proper uniforming. Not because we are told to, but because we want to - because we want to send the right message to ourselves and to our unit, and to our community, and to our country. Every boy, girl and leader in these programs is a representative of our movement and its values. Let's learn how to send the most positive message we can by the way we present ourselves as we go about doing good.
  20. The Latin Scot

    I can't be the only one????

    I know this is a late reply, but that is a beautiful patch. I wish my lodge would come up with patches as attractive as the ones some other lodges regularly produce.
  21. The Latin Scot

    Fitness Goals for Scouters

    It is important to remember, however, that one's health and fitness is reflected by more than just one's size. Some people are naturally larger than others, whether taller or wider, and it's becoming all too frequent in our society to look at being larger as a "bad" thing, as though everybody should be thin and toned, and everybody who isn't is doing something wrong - or not doing something right. If you were to judge my fitness based on my shape you would easily think I was very healthy and exercise daily - I'm trim, toned, small waist et cetera. But the truth is I have conditional asthma and severe allergies, and I can't run more than a few blocks without getting winded. I can't even lift my own bodyweight. Obviously these are things that I continually work on, but I am not particularly "fit" even though my body shape might fool you into thinking so. By contrast, I have many friends who are big guys but who are healthy as horses, can run quickly and hike days on end without a problem. Yet looking at them, their shapes or waistlines might fool you into thinking they are unhealthy when they are actually extremely fit. Be careful when basing your estimation of somebody's health on somebody's shape. That will rarely tell you the whole picture of the level their fitness.
  22. The Latin Scot

    Fitness Goals for Scouters

    I wish I could be more helpful in this thread! But I can say that I am still pretty much in my "prime" (if I ever had one), and I often find myself wondering how I will maintain my energy and vigor working with kids 20 - 30 years from now. It's only by virtue of age and genetics that I am trim and healthy now, but I have to remind myself that as I get older, those aren't guaranteed to last. And even now as a spry 34 year-old, I sometimes get worn out after a particularly rowdy den meeting or a long day outdoors. So for sure, if I am to keep up with the kids over the decades, I will need to be active in my personal health and fitness, and not passive.
  23. The Latin Scot

    DE interference - not helping

    This actually isn't particularly unusual, nor is it a new or obscure regulation. You DE was simply following the correct procedures according to BSA policy. A volunteer can't serve in more than one position within a unit; admittedly smaller units sometimes bend this rule but it's not supposed to happen. So you shouldn't have anybody serving as both Cubmaster and Den Leader either. Here's the link to an article from the Scouting Magazine blog that should hopefully help you understand the rationale behind this principle: https://blog.scoutingmagazine.org/2016/04/29/can-volunteer-serve-multiple-volunteer-roles/
  24. The Latin Scot

    Do I need 2 uniforms?

    In addition to the fact that there is no "cub-" or "boy scout-" specific trained patch per se these days (you can wear the red or the green at your preference), it's also important to remember that you should never wear two of any patch on the uniform. No doubles of anything, even if it's an award you've earned twice.
  25. The Latin Scot

    Wood Badge - Roses and Thorns

    That may depend on where you live; in my area Wood Badge is promoted, advertised, even glorified ad nauseum, and for those who haven't taken it (myself included), there is often an uncomfortable amount of pressure to do so, as though one isn't a real Scouter until one has their beads. And the number of Scouters around here who do have them is very high; I've nearly been made to feel somewhat guilty at a few events for being as involved in Scouting as I am and yet not having taken the course. Nevertheless, I have never been one to acquiesce to peer pressure generally, and if I end my Scouting days never having taken it, I won't particularly regret it. But MAN - they push it hard here.
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