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Posts posted by HelpfulTracks

  1. 5 hours ago, CynicalScouter said:

    As I noted: any progress in terms of BSA and issues like this only occurred after a lot of years and a lot of kicking and screaming.

    Please provide some reference for that.

    Other than admitting gays to Scouting, that statement just isn't true. SO you can skip that one.

    BSA never had a policy against minority unit or desegregated units. 

    The transgender change happened almost overnight. The policy changed within days of a youth going public that their unit would not admit them. Social justice groups didn't even have time to mobilize a campaign against BSA.

    As for admitting girls to troops, the general public was opposed to that change, and other than one girls social media campaign there was not much more than the occasional group of girls asking to be admitted. I know for a fact that Scouters were pushing for that change from within long before the young ladies social media campaign. Never mind that girls have been in some for of Scouting for 50 years. 


    5 hours ago, CynicalScouter said:

    BSA has not exactly been quick to embrace modernity... 

    You keep saying that as if some one is disagreeing. No one is. 

    5 hours ago, CynicalScouter said:

    ....and when it has it has been condemned by scouters as "politically correct".

    Some Scouts have, many of them left BSA. But most of the most vocal one making that statement, did not have a current relationship with BSA or never had one. 

  2. 6 hours ago, yknot said:

    But it's also fair to note that many people who have viewed BSA in a favorable light over the years have also been those who have been interested in perpetuating some of the social issues 

    I don't think that conclusion can be reached based on polling. 

    Over the last decade BSA has mostly had a favorable rating between 65-75%, twice falling into the mid/upper 50s

    59%  when BSA admitted gay your but banned gay adults.

    56% in latest polls, attributed to bankruptcy/abuse 

    Generally, those that believe Scouting is good for youth have hovered around 80%, latest poll having that number at 69%

    One could debate the reasoning for disparity, but those numbers do not reflect the general publics favorability rating of the social issues we have discussed here. 

  3. 28 minutes ago, CynicalScouter said:

    There was no law requiring segregated scouting units. BSA simply let that happen.

    You really do need to read some history. 

    But you are correct there was no law that said black and white children cannot be in the same boy scout troop, specifically. 

    It was all good as long as they don't drink from the same fountain, eat in the same place, meet in the same place, swim in the same place, pray together. Oh, and you need to be okay with some crazy klan guy attacking you and maybe even trying to kill you.

    Beyond that, knock yourself out. 


  4. 11 hours ago, PeterHopkins said:

    B-P's original Scout Oath was

    On my honour I promise that—

    1. I will do my duty to God and the King.
    2. I will do my best to help others, whatever it costs me.
    3. I know the scout law, and will obey it.

    I'll add some more of BP's own words. 

    "When asked where religion came into Scouting and Guiding, Baden-Powell replied, It does not come in at all.   It is already there.   It is a fundamental factor underlying Scouting and Guiding." (Religion and the Boy Scout and Girl Guides Movement-- an address, 1926).

    "In other words, we aim for the practice of Christianity in their everyday life and dealings, and not merely the profession of its theology on Sundays."

  5. 13 hours ago, CynicalScouter said:

    Oh, but you know the "wheels were moving in that direction" don't ya know. Sure they were.

    • Race: only after the NAACP started filing suit in 1974 to finally get BSA to stop its last segregated units and even COUNCILS (it blows my mind: a segregated COUNCIL)
    • Gender: only took until 2019.
    • Orientation: Dale anyone? BSA had to be dragged there kicking and screaming.
    • Religion: I will note that B-P original Scout Oath NEVER included outright references to God and there are writing indicating he was horrified about how scouting in the U.S. was so tied to churches, a result of the intertwining from the start with the LDS and the YMCA movements.


    Race: BSA has never had a policy of segregation. There have been black units and desegregated units since the 1910's. Were there segregated units in the South? Yes, and sadly it was the law. Crossing that line would have destroyed Scouting in the South, including the black units that already existed,  and likely gotten a lot of you people hurt or killed. The law suit you site was the NAACP was an attempt to get the LDS church to change its doctrine, it was not because BSA had any policy of segregation. 

    Gender: Boy Scout units started just like Scouting the UK, for boys only. It was not long before GSUSA was created and for decades that worked for everyone. But there have been girls in Scouting since since 1971 via Explorers (later Venturing). Ironically, BSA is being sued as a result of allowing girls in Scouts BSA.

    Orientation: Once again BSA lagged, but not by much, less than a decade prior to BSA admitting gay SM and youth, the majority of the country was still opposed to gays in general. 

    Religion: I'll just use BP's own words here.

    "When asked where religion came into Scouting and Guiding, Baden-Powell replied, It does not come in at all.   It is already there.   It is a fundamental factor underlying Scouting and Guiding." (Religion and the Boy Scout and Girl Guides Movement-- an address, 1926).

    "In other words, we aim for the practice of Christianity in their everyday life and dealings, and not merely the profession of its theology on Sundays."


    BSA is not perfect, but there are also not the evil organization you want to make them out to be. Have they failed to live up to their own standards at times, absolutely, as we all have. Have been the leading voice in social change? No, but they do not try to claim they are. 

    You hate BSA because of what happened to you, and I don't blame you. But you post misleading, sometimes factually incorrect information to paint everything BSA has done as evil. As long as you do that I will continue to push back.

  6. 3 hours ago, yknot said:

    I feel like I've entered some kind of alternate reality with some of these comments. Yes, there are examples of places in BSA where it was true to it's own oath and law. 

    I think you are seeing push back, at least from me, is because there are some on this site that see BSA as 100% bad 100% of the time. I personally know that not to be the base. Maybe it is just trolling for a personal agenda.

    3 hours ago, yknot said:

    However, Boy Scouts in general is not regarded by people outside of it as an example of a tolerant or inclusive organization. 

    Most people have had a favorable opinion of Boy Scouts through its history. I has certainly decreased in recent years, but a majority of people still do.

    13 hours ago, yknot said:

    Over the years it has generally excluded or segregated people by race, gender, orientation, and religion. It has a history of being behind the curve on almost every important social issue. It allows this by unit to this day when it comes to religion and orientation.


    I agree that BSA has lagged on social issues, and I have said so. But, not to the degree that you are making it out. 

    BSA has never had a policy of segregation. Did they lead the charge in desegregating units in the South, no, But BSA has never, and likely will never, be an organization that is on the front lines of pushing for social change. 


  7. 4 hours ago, PeterHopkins said:

    I agree that is not the intention. I also believe that ScoutReach make makes the program, at least a taste of it, available in places where it may not exist. However, the outcome it produces is segregation.

    Yu just said yourself that you were a commissioner for such a district. Why are ScoutReach units grouped together and treated as a district? What would be so terrible about them attending a camporee with traditional units?

    In addition to the noble goals of ScoutReach, I think there is a motivation to operate it in a way that maximize membership numbers. That isn't necessarily a bad thing, but the youth should be getting the full benefit of the program.

    The largest city in my council, by far, has a roughly 65% black population. No one would ever guess that, if they looked around the room at one of our OA lodge events.

    I'm not sure how you council runs ScoutReach, but we do have traditional units, at Cubs but particularly at Scouts BSA and Venturing level. 

    Yes, there are different modes of getting the younger ones into Scouting activities, units that met at non-traditional locations and times from more traditional cub units. But we also had traditional cub units.

    However, it was a significant challenge to get adult leaders to start that many traditional units. Sometime we could grow a ScoutReach unit into a traditional unit and sometimes cubs would move to more traditional units once they "got the bug".

    Yes, they need some additional services not required by traditional units, and yes some volunteers are paid, but not all. 

    All of our older units, Scouts BSA and Venturing, functioned as traditional units. 

    We had a commissioner for them because they needed assistance just like every other unit, in some cases more. By the way, that was the most difficult job I have had in scouting, but also the most rewarding. 

    That district no longer exist, because we have consolidated and cut in half the number of districts we have. Before we consolidated districts the district units joined a neighboring district for cuborees, cub day camps and camporees (because we did not have the level of volunteers to pull off all of those events). We also held cub events that were just for our district. Members from that district were also represented in council contingents for NSJ, WSJ and high adventure bases. 

    Before we consolidated our Lodge Secretary was from that district, and now serves as Lodge VC. 

    Even though that district no longer exist, those ScoutReach units do, they are just part of a different district. 

    Yes we had units that were made of just minorities, because that was the neighborhood population, but we had as many that were made up of all races. Some of those predominantly white, some predominately minority.  There was and is no segregation. 

  8. 1 minute ago, PeterHopkins said:

    Don't we still have segregated districts and simply call them Scoutreach now?

    No we do not. Having been a Commissioner for such a district I can tell that is not what ScoutReach is at all. 

    • Upvote 1
  9. 3 hours ago, CynicalScouter said:

    Whenever I hear people chime in with the BSA has never been political and always supported the Oath and Law, I remind them BSA allowed for segregated units, districts, and even Councils until 1974 when the NAACP sued them into shame and the last Council was finally ordered desegregated.




    The BSA has often lagged behind in terms of cultural change. 

    Segregation isn't really one of them. From 1911 there have been black troops. In some areas BSA predated the military in desegregation. 

    Yes, the South was a tough nut to crack but there were black Troops there as early as 1911. BSA kept forging forward even though segregation was the law in many states in the South. 

    The last article there, is a lawsuit from NAACP to get Boy Scouts of America to force the LDS Church to change its doctrine on who could become priest. I think that lawsuit was dismissed, but I may be wrong. 

    It is unfortunate that history refuses to abide by the timeline and modern day standards we think it should, but then again I guess it would cease to be history. 

    But we continue to march forward to stamp out hate, hate, hate. 

    • Upvote 1
  10. 2 hours ago, CynicalScouter said:

    Except that whole part about seperate-but-equal units, districts, and councils. That wasn't held in common, not for a LONG time.

    No, it was not held in common by all. 

    But, enough good people opposed segregation that BSA was pushing for desegregation as early as the 1910's.

    Fortunately, good people persisted and eventually, segregation was overcome. 

    Hate, Hate, Hate was defeated. But it is clear we still have work to do. 

    • Upvote 1
  11. 5 hours ago, InquisitiveScouter said:

    When I think on this, I can honestly say we don't really need our local council.  Everything they provide us could be done (and in most cases, actually already is being provided) through National functions (policy, materials (books and uniforms), standardized training) and local volunteers (local training courses and events).

    Could anyone else here live without their local council?  With the technologies we have now, could they go away without a great deal of impact to Scouting?  I think so....and so, BSA toggle?


    I disagree, I have lobbied for a smaller national presence. But I would not want to try to carry out our mission and program without my local professionals. I rely on them frequently. Their primary value is not sitting in an office (though there are  important things done there), it is their boots on the ground assistance, recruiting scouts and volunteers, assisting with programs, and yes fundraising. 

  12. 4 hours ago, johnsch322 said:

    Question to current scout leaders. What do you tell current scouts and or their parents if asked about the current bankruptcy and the child sexual abuse in the past?

    Simple, I tell the truth to the best of my knowledge. If I don't know, I will tell then I will try to find out and follow up, then I do so. 

    But I rarely get questions from parents or scouts. By the time they are in units I have been involved with, they have been in Scouting for sometime and are aware of the current events of the time. 

    Most of the questions I have received come from people not involved in Scouting, and again, I tell them the truth to the best of my knowledge. 

  13. 10 minutes ago, FormerCubmaster said:

    BSA was only supposed to be apolitical when its membership leaned rightward.

    As the organization’s demographics evolve, it will naturally be expected to take a greater role in social activism.  

    I have been a Scout and Scouter for a very long time. 

    I think the common perception is that the organization is made up mostly or right leaning individuals. But I have known many many very left leaning individuals, and it has been a fairly even split. 

    What we held in common, both left and right, was a belief in and adherence to the Scout Oath and Law.

    I think we are seeing more and more people, both left and right, who are more ready to cast aside the Oath and Law, if it benefits them or they see fit. 


    • Upvote 2
  14. That was a poorly written article, difficult to follow. 

    Had these been my scouts I would have recommended they not wear their uniform since they were taking a stance on an issue in a public forum. I also, would have had a discussion with them about two points of the Scout Law in particular, a Scout is Courteous and a Scout is Reverent. 

    I don't think, they met any requirement for one of the merit badges they were working on, its is questionable on 2 more, and may have gotten the requirement or two on the fourth. Also, having the meeting on video tape is not a requirement as one of the youth stated.

    I am shocked they were able to get 42 plus minutes of council time, though it does appear that the council re-arranged their meeting for the benefits of the Scouts, all the more reason to review the points of the Scout Law I mentioned earlier. 


  15. 1 hour ago, Muttsy said:

    You haven’t bothered to study the history. This was a civil conspiracy to conceal the sexual abuse of children that continued for a century.  It was child endangerment on an epic scale. The pedophiles are the wild beasts with uncontrollable obsessions. What generations of executives did in keeping it secret from scouts and the public is indefensible. 

    You are free to your opinion.

    You are free to disagree with me.

    But please do not assume you know what I have and have not studied. 

  16. 54 minutes ago, johnsch322 said:

    I actually thought the question was straight forward.  My opinion that scouters within an LC would be better off if the LC gave up a greater share of their assets now than face the uncertainty of the outcome of the LC becoming bankrupt.

    It was not clear, but now I see. 

    Have seen what my council has done (sold off a camp and used a significant sum of free cash), I am not sure that Chapter 11 would have much more effect, beyond legal fees. 

    If we are talking Chapter 7, then certainly they would be better off, but I am not convinced that would be the path. 

  17. 22 minutes ago, CynicalScouter said:

    And what is the exchange rate? 

    How many Cub Scout campouts absolve BSA from its civil liability for a Tier 1 child sexual abuse, hmmm?

    BSA cannot and should not use today’s children as human shields for its corporate negligence in how it handled child sexual abuse.


    Well, I am not BSA, and I am not trying to absolve the organization of anything.

    But since you want to use a balance sheet of exchange rates, there is plenty of good that has positively effected lives. 

    • I was headed down a bad path with the people I was hanging out with in the neighborhood. After getting into trouble my dad put me in Scouting, it took a while but it helped straighten me out.
    • I lost both parents as a teen, my mom early in my Scouting career. The better part of a year is just blank, I remember almost nothing from that time. I quit everything, sports, clubs, even friends, my grades plummeted. About all I can remembers are some campouts. My family tells me the only thing I reacted to was going on scouting campouts. 
    • When I found out my father was sick and dying Scouting was something that played a huge roll in our relationship over the last months of his life.
    • What about a close friend from my youth, who was able to save his father because he learned CPR in scouts. 
    • Another was able to jump in and save his sister from drowning, because he learned to swim in scouts, even though he had previously been deathly afraid of water. 
    • How about a scout that lost both parents in a car wreck. Scouts were his largest support group, so much so his grandparents who were becoming his guardians, moved to him rather than making him move miles away to them. 
    • What about all the great opportunities my son has had that he would not have had without scouting.

    Those are not human shields, those are lives changed in a positive way by Scouting. I understand that this is not your experience with scouting. But I have heard similar stories as mine from other Scouters. This is why Scouters like me want to make sure Scouting survives, while also want to see something done for victims, even if we know whatever is done, cannot make things right. 

    For me it has never been do we save scouting OR do we help victims, it has always been both. 

    • Upvote 2
  18. 10 minutes ago, johnsch322 said:

    I would like to add that for anyone who cares about current scouters satisfying victims is in their best interest.  If the vote doesn't pass and this all goes to the toggle plan their will be many LC's going bankrupt.  That will hurt current scouters more than meaningful money being put into the settlement by LC's.

    I do not disagree. Which is why when the concept of what is fair was brought up, I asked what that is. 

    Based on SOME of the responses, the settlement that reaches the level of "fair" either includes BSA going away, or it requires a level of financial restitution that is not achievable because that level of assets does not exist. 

    Some have made recommendations that seem achievable. And I would assume the lawyers that represent the victims have negotiated (and are negotiating) to get to that place.

    7 minutes ago, johnsch322 said:

    Not sure which LC you belong to but would it be in the best interest of your current scouters if your LC had to declare bankruptcy?

    I am not sure what the reasoning behind the question is, so I cannot expound other than to say I don't know.

  19. 45 minutes ago, Muttsy said:

    I don’t much care what happens to BSA. It is 100% responsible for its predicament. 

    I disagree. BSA's mistakes, in-action, and deliberate actions, absolutely have responsibility in this predicament, but are the actual abuser not responsible for some of the predicament?

    • Upvote 1
  20. 2 hours ago, johnsch322 said:

    In my opinion BSA National should exit bankruptcy on their own and let everyone else defend themselves.


    1 hour ago, Muttsy said:

    Survivors can do better. There is a path. But BSA has to be gone first whether toggle or 7. 


    1 hour ago, 1980Scouter said:

    Fair is LC contribution close to all endowments.  Start from scratch with limited camps. 

    First, I don't know enough about "Toggle Plan" is without doing a lot more research than I have time for now. 

    Second, what is in the interest of current and future scouts is included in my concept of fair. This was not a problem they created.

    Third, something that can be achieved. Some number I have seen could not be reached if every single asset and restricted fund the BSA has liquidated. 

    Forth, I am no lawyer, so my opinion relies on a laymen understanding.

    @johnsch322 I am not sure how that would be fair for anyone unless the primary, and maybe only, goal would be to kill BSA. If BSA went it alone then the total victims gets with Ch11 is likely not much different. And though, I have not seen their balance sheets in sometime if they went Ch7, I doubt much would be left after secured creditors carved it up.

    That would leave the insurance companies, 250 councils, and thousands to CO's for victims to try and deal with. 

    You could toss out some portion of the victims claims because of SOL. 

    You could toss out some portion of the victims claims because law firms would see them as un-winable and refuse to take them. 

    And still more because some cases will be enough risk that few if any law firms will take them on a contingency.

    That scenario would likely produce a fair outcome for a handful of victims, but I  think it would leave many (most/vast majority maybe) exactly where they were when this started. For some maybe worse, because they have pain spotlighted.

    @Muttsy maybe I am misreading what you mean, but it sounds like the dissolution of BSA is required for you to see it as fair. Please correct me if I am not reading this correctly. 

    @1980Scouter Maybe you are correct, it would be hard for me to agree or disagree without more info. My understanding is part of what a council is asked to pay is based on the number, time frame and severity of the the abuse. Which appears to pretty well define in the the documents. As for the ability to pay, I would like to know more about the assets, liabilities, cash flow and restricted funds before pointing to a council and saying they can do more. 

    I do know, the few council balance sheets I have seen, the return from endowments is not nearly enough to run a council. 


    Maybe FAIR is not a standard that can be achieved for victims, regardless of what BSA pays, even it that is everything it has. 

  21. Perhaps it was discussed and I missed it, but this thread keeps referring to adult leaders and ASM's (age 18-20).

    What is missing is Adult Participants, the 18-20 year old Venturing, Sea Scout and OA participants. 

    They are also required to follow YP. 

    YPT does not specifically state (in official material) family exceptions. What about cousins? What about half-siblings or step-siblings, especially if they live in separate homes. Even then I have been informed that there was at least one case of a parent molesting their own youth, even prior to entering Scouting. 

    When teaching YPT the "out of scouting" rules pertaining to Adult Participants and extended family where where I found most people getting frustrated. 

    I have heard dozens of scenarios that are pretty common that violate YP when out of Scouting rules are applied. 

    • Scout A and his little sister pick up Scout B to ride to school each day at about 8am. Scout A is 18 and scout B is 16. Scout B's parents leave for work before 6am, the bus picks up about 6:15am. One day Scout A shows up to pick up Scout B without his little sister, who woke up at 6:30 sick. Too late to get to the bus. Now what?
    • A Venturing Scout has been dating his girlfriend for about a year, she is in a BSA Scouting Troop. There is 14 months difference in their age. Then he then turns 18, now what?
    • Two best friends since 1st grade join Venturing together, they are inseparable and do everything together. There is 5 months difference in their age. One turns 18, now what?
    • And the list goes on.....................................

    YPT cannot cover every edge case, nor can common sense be relied on. 

    There needs to be a way to take prior relationships into account without telling a Scout, give up Scouting or give up the relationship.



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