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Everything posted by Eagle1993

  1. @@Eagledad. I guess I'm looking for some sort of evidence of the PC push and the purpose of pointing the debate outward vs simply debating if and/or how we add girls to the program. There is ample evidence and we all lived through the previous admission debate and that clearly came from outside pressure. I don't think we should let BSA off the hook by simply stating they are caving to PC police and there is no point in pushing back. I'm personally on the fence on this one and think the BSA would honestly consider member feedback this time around (as the outside "PC" pressure isn't really there). If the BSA thinks they have to do this due to outside PC pressure then we are in pretty bad shape.
  2. Eagledad... I'm simply responding to the various posters who are claiming BSA is looking to add girls because of a "PC" claim. I tend to take the BSA at their word. Watch their video for proof starting at 5:45, they clearly state why they are looking into this ... based on millennial family dynamic changes. Sorry I missed adding that reference in my statement, but I thought most already watched the video which was linked multiple times in these threads. I don't see evidence pointing to any organized PC campaign pushing for girls to join BSA. Attempting to blame outside groups is a weak argument and unsubstantiated. This is really an internal BSA debate.
  3. I am fairly close to progressive groups and I'd like to see the evidence there is any significant outside pressure from the "PC" community. There was definitely a outside campaign for gay and transgender boys to be admitted but I don't see this for girls. How many UnitedWay chapters have cut funding due to BSA not admitting girls? Change.org had over 2 million signatures gathered against the BSA and supporters of BSA (amazon smile, united way, etc.). To date I have found <9,000 signatures in change.org (and none against our financial backers) in support of adding girls. When I talk with my progressive friends about BSA adding girls ... their initial response is concern of the harm it will do to the progressive GSUSA. I think this is much more of an internal discussion with a focus on millennial parent dynamics than some sort of PC play. There are a few op eds and a letter from NOW but nothing serious. If you can point to 50+ United Way chapters that dropped funding and million+ petition campaigns then I'd believe you. Otherwise, I think the PC argument is a straw man. From the progressive community, BSa's theistic requirement is a much bigger deal and probably the next area of "PC" attack. Admitting girls is an internal debate as long as the GSUSA remains vibrant and progressive.
  4. @@Eagledad. I think this may vary by school. Our GSUSA program has huge recruiting classes and they begin at K5. So, parents are looking for the Boy counterpart at K5. I've turned parents away at K5 in the past and they rarely came back after follow ups for Tigers or Wolf. Our average Tiger den would start at 6 kids and build to 8 by Webelos 2. Our 1st year of Lions had 19 kids join. GSUSA had over 30 daisies in the same school. Parents are clearly looking for clubs and activities when they register their kids for school the first time and I don't see us getting that mindshare back after that point in time. We never had 19 kids join any den any year. We will have to monitor this over the next couple of years to see the long term impact. I do agree that Lions and Tigers should and could be less intense and even separate from the pack to help prevent burnout.. the more I think about it the better it sounds. That said, the pack should still help a bit so the volunteers are not off on an island.
  5. Most of the youth here get more heavily involved in sports as they age... not less. I don't see the "my son won't be a pro decision" until high school. By that age 13-14. I don't see many scouts starting at that age.
  6. Oops..."bs" = " instead of" Not sure how I fat fingered that one.
  7. You have to be careful waiting too long to get kids in the program. Select baseball and soccer begin at 7 in my area. Parents start kids in violin lessons at 5. If you have no contact with the youth until 4th or 5th grade their time will already be allocated to other camps, sports and activities. BSA faces much more competition for youth time than 20-30 years ago. I actually think getting them started at K5 makes sense, but you have to ramp slowly, lower the overhead of the program and make it fun for the scouts, parents and volunteers. Not sure this is kosher, but our committee meetings are at a restaurant/bar (not in uniform). We include all the den leaders and have a great time planning upcoming meetings, discussing the pack and other various topics. Our blue & gold is a small banquet followed by a pool party with a belly flop competition. Our campouts are a blast. Yes, we get through the adventures in our den meetings but we do our best to keep it fun. Ive seen too many pack meetings with the scouts being entertained bs being active and having fun. We have actually gained scouts in most of our dens year over year. Kids have come up to me and asked if we really camp in caves or stayed overnight sleeping under multiple Lombardi trophies. When the scouts (and parents/volunteers) have fun they don't get burnt out. I think the main issues is that aspects of the program do get in the way of this. If you make Cub Scouting 2nd school you will fail.
  8. "I have found my space — and that is with Boy Scout Troop 414 in New York City. Contrary to what some might think, the Boy Scouts is not specifically tailored to boys. Its mission is to “prepare young people to make ethical and moral choices over their lifetimes by instilling in them the values of the Scout Oath and Scout Law.†With the Cub Scouts, I went on camping trips, built my own wooden car for the pinewood derbies, learned about what firefighters do and even earned the highest award, the Arrow of Light. With the Boy Scouts, I have been able to learn and teach first aid, earn merit badges, earn lifeguard certification, complete the mile swim (twice) and even take on the role of patrol leader at camp. These opportunities were available to me because of the Boy Scouts, and although I am not yet officially recognized as a member, I would not have been able to learn or teach these life skills without the program." There are other articles indicating Troop 414 has accepted her as an unofficial member of the Troop. It seems to open up legal questions if we are reallly boy only how can Troops have her serve as patrol leader. On a personal level she seems like an awesome leader and probably more deserving of her ranks than many boys, I'm just wondering why the BSA would allow this to continue and wonder what the legal implications could be.
  9. @Hawkin. If the BSA felt that keeping girls out of scouting is core to their mission then any units that violate this core mission should face consequences. Otherwise, I could actually see an issues in the court. Just look at the last Supreme Court decision. The scouts only one on a 5-4 decision. They were allowed to violate the Nj state constitution as the BSA has a right to free association. However, if the BSA doesn't consistently enforce their rules and allows a girl to participate to the point of obtaining a rank I wonder if the court would question if the boys only is really required as part of their expressive association. Again, not a lawyer but the safer bet for the BSA, if they don't want to add girls, is to stop Sydney from participating to the point of obtaining rank. The GSUSA would never allow this. I will say this has nothing to do with my opinion of girls in BSA or Sydney Ireland, only that I am surprised the BSA hasn't been more active enforcing membership rules inI this public case like they were in previous cases.
  10. Never mind... just saw KenD500's post...money travels easier. Thanks.
  11. @Col. Flag ... Not sure if this would be useful ... sometimes there could be too much "help". Our first Pack meeting this year we were going to have our scouts bring in some of their used toys to donate to Goodwill. I was thinking we could also ask families to bring in slightly used camping equipment (tents, stoves, lanterns, etc.) that could be donated to Troops in Texas who may have lost equipment. We have done this locally in the past for new or disadvantaged Troops. Let me know if this would help or just be ad added hassle. Good luck and keep safe!
  12. @@Eagle94-A1 ... small sample size but my district meeting was nearly 100% in favor of coed. Most of the complaints were regarding the proposal for girl only dens and Troops. Many were concerned that it would be inefficient and would not work and we should just go coed. Only 1 spoke against ... long term scouter but not leading any troop or pack. I asked my SE about this and he indicated it depends on the area within the council you are and who actually attends the meetings. I'm sure some will quit scouting and others will get more involved. My gut tells me this will be a net positive to membership numbers assuming LDS doesn't leave ... but that is just a guess based upon actual scouters I know and have talked to. Other than a few older scouters (my father) who's kids are already aged out everyone I have personally talked to supports this proposed change. Several moms have stated they wish they had the opportunity to join BSA and fathers of daughters have asked me to let them know if and when it is available. I do agree with Qwazse that it would take focus group interviews across a wide swath of demographics to really predict what will occur. I'm sure for everyone like me who has only heard positive response (other than dad and anonymous forum members) there are others that have heard much more negative feedback.
  13. @@NJCubScouter. If they wanted to avoid any legal issue, I would think the BSA would revoke the charter of Troop 414 who is working with her on her quest for Eagle. I'm not a lawyer but I'm curious if she could argue that gender isn't a critical aspect of the program (since they allowed a Troop to work with her) and since she is going to be denied Eagle Scout (which clearly has value with scholarships, etc.) even after completing the work.. she would have standing. I wouldn't be shocked if this goes the legal route and NY State Supreme Court rules in her favor. I think US Supreme Court wouldn't (based on the last case) but the public relations hit would already be effective. I doubt it gets that far as I expect BSA to change their policy ahead of any legal challenges. However, if they really don't want to change I'm surprised they haven't been more aggressive with the Troop supporting her. This is really regardless of where anyone stands on admitting girls, the BSA clearly is letting this go on without any challenge which is a change on how they handled gay and transgender scouts in the past.
  14. @@Gwaihir ... my understanding is that Boy Scout Troops would still be all boys and they are looking at alt programs or Troops that would be all girl. I would expect there would still be single gender options for boys in the BSA even if there are more options for girls.
  15. If Venturing is floundering I wonder if BSA makes Venturing girl only 11 - 18 and then add on some sort of young adult coed group for 18 - 26. Venturing would then be open to earn ranks similar to Boy Scouts. Cub Scouts would essentially be coed but you would separate at crossover.
  16. @@HelpfulTracks. I think Sydney's goal is clear... change BSA policy to allow girls to join and obtain the Eagle Scout rank. (I agree that Eagle Scout changed from a rank earned during the course of scouting to an end goal of its own... and I agree that is not a great change). Since that is her goal, joining Venturers or GSUSA won't help. She did join the Canadian Scouts during the summers and earned their highest rank... but her focus is Eagle in BSA. I expect she will continue to "earn" merit badges and take on appropriate leadership posts until she completes the requirements for Eagle Scout. I do wonder what she will do then. Will she file a lawsuit or use her experience to apply public pressure on the BSA. Perhaps the experience will be enough for her and she won't press for official recognition. Given the current Supreme Court makeup I don't expect any lawsuit being successful in forcing BSA to admit girls. I also don't see the same public backlash the BSA experienced from the LGBTQ community and supporters. So I doubt BSA will change its policy due to her actions. I think her goal is clear and has been consistent. She is attempting to follow civil rights icons such as Rosa Parks by forcing the issue into the courts or public discussion. We will have to wait and see where this ends.
  17. @@Hawkwin ... I think it depends on any changes made to BSA to attract female members. My troop 25 years ago had a few girls go with us to BWCA and they were like one of the guys. We acted pretty much the same and we canoed over 100 miles with them. my family just hit 4 generations of eagles and opinions vary by generation. My father is against it... reasoning isn't clear but best summed up that while a couple of girls may be ok opening it up would add many others that would destroy the program... and that it's nice to have a boys only club. I'm supportive if BSa doesn't change the program as mentioned above. My nephews are fully supportive, they are in venturing with girls. Note that they won't tell grandpa this as he will get pissed. It be interesting to see a poll based on age of the parent.. I wonder if the acceptance of girls increases with decreasing age. Not that means it's the right call... perhaps the older generations are more aware of what could be lost. One final point... if the change is made you can't go back.
  18. Adding link to article by Sydney Ireland https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.washingtonpost.com/amphtml/opinions/im-a-girl-ive-been-part-of-the-boy-scouts-for-years-its-time-i-become-a-member/2017/08/25/a6d61ea8-89c1-11e7-961d-2f373b3977ee_story.html
  19. Here is a wonderful opinion piece from a daughter of a Boy Scout camp ranger. https://www.buzzfeed.com/ldboyscout/its-2017-let-girls-be-boy-scouts?utm_term=.ciJbzA1xL#.edg43GvpM
  20. At our Cub Scout level recruitment numbers had dropped but that is a good point regarding retention. In the end, it is critical that the Pack has their program with the perfect combination of kids having fun and parents seeing the value. Some of our dens do better than others. But I still believe there is an image problem with the BSA... we get the funnel from scouting families but that isn't enough. We don't push FOS hard ... more of a soft sell. The only fee requirement we have is the $100 we charge for annual den, pack and membership dues. Our pack is in an affluent area where parents spend $2-$3K per year on baseball camps and leagues so our $100 rarely comes up as an issue. At the Cub Scout level, I tend to believe our ranks will grow if we go coed. I'm not sure about Boy Scouts and if we lose LDS I'm sure total numbers will drop.
  21. Ian.. good points. I remember as a kid when Steven Spielberg was helping at Jambo for cinematography merit badge ... but outside of that the most celebrity mention was the occasional so and so was a former scout. I think BSA does have a marketing problem. Excluding gays hurt for a while (in terms of press coverage) and Billy builds a retaining wall for an Eagle project, while honorable, doesn't bring in the recruits. But the issue isn't just at a national level. Our pack had dropped from 70-80 scouts to 20s over a few years. We created a Facebook put pictures of our outings and advertised with signs outside our school. (We were banned from boy talks and any official school events due to a previous lawsuit filed by a member of the community when we still banned gays). The next year we add 23 new scouts. Several asked if we really camped in a cave, etc. Our national and local image needs to change. If we add girls it may make sense for a brand refresh.
  22. NJ.. the sneaky part they are referring to is an accusation the BSA is badmouthing GSUSA. I have never seen that (outside of GSUSA parents and scouts fed up with their program). As you mention the actual sneaky part is the BSA tactic that is preventing current members of BSA from knowing what is being discussed. Merger or any partnership with GSUSA should be off the table. Campfire scouts may be a better option. I wonder what the female venture scouts think of that resist/persist hash tag. To me it is incredibly condescending. I am confident girls and young women have the strength of character to chose the program or programs that suit them best.
  23. Chicago Tribune editorial board.... http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/editorials/ct-edit-scouts-20170824-story.html "An obvious solution to consider is a merger, which would assure strong membership and reflect social change. But if that’s a non-starter, here’s an interesting alternative: Since we’re waaaaay past the era when Boy Scouts went canoeing while Girl Scouts learned to sew, open both organizations to all youths. Both do the same types of activities, from rocketry to rock climbing. Both are good at selling stuff. So let them sell the benefits of membership along with the cookies and popcorn. Allow the kids to sort out how they want to spend their time, and with whom. Talk about equality, and empowerment." Washington Post Opinion (by one of their reporters who is an ex member of GSUSA).. "Girls shouldn’t be barred from the Boy Scouts if that’s where they want to be. But the effort to undercut the Girl Scouts by stealing the lifeblood of their organization is sneaky, pathetic and shameful. #Resist #Persist"
  24. The previous changes were forced through due to massive outside pressure. I can tell you that my corporate (DOW listed company) LGBTQ affinity group would have ensured no facility or funding would have been given to BSA. If the policy didn't change, I expect that even listing Eagle Scout on your resume could have be a blemish if not a sign to screen it out. BSA would have been viewed in the same light as a race based organization. My point above is to not debate our previous policy changes but to emphasize that adding girls is not being driven by outside groups (for the most part). I haven't heard threats of funding being pulled and nothing from our women's affinity groups. Therefore, this is clearly is being looked at solely as a plan to increase membership. First impact that must be considered is our LDS scouts. They are a massive percent of BSA membership and I am sure the BSA already knows their plans. They are either planning to stay after adding girls or have already decided to leave. I don't believe adding girls would offset LDS loss, and since the BSA is investigating this change I don't believe LDS would leave as a result of adding girls (my guess). If that is the case, I tend hope BSA did do the studies that show membership increase. Hopefully they are accurate
  25. While officially quiet their volunteers and employees were vocal pointing out their admission differences and their supporters in the media used this to trash the BSA. They still do it today. I was at my daughters new scout meeting and the question of fees came up. The Girl Scout leader said she didn't know yet as it is a new troop. We threw out some ranges and in response to one of the higher ranges the Girl Scout executive laughed and said they weren't the Boy Scouts. In our discussions with parents for our pack we have always been positive when talking about GSUSA. GSUSA must tread carefully here. BSA can simply state they are opening up another opportunity for girls. I think GSUSA and their supporters will argue this is bad for girls. They are already tweeting news releases pushing this idea and Liberal news organizations (Slate and Daily Beast) and already have opinion pieces on this. I think emphasizing the positive aspects of the GSUSA and girl only organization is fine. The letter from GSUSA went well beyond and attacked even the option of another organization offering an opportunity for girls. I'm concerned that even our venturing girls will feel like traders based on GSUSA's response. That tactic sickens me. We are both organizations with different strengths and GSUSA should remain strong regardless of some girls joining BSA (if that occurs). No organization should attack the BSA (other than our own existing charters) if the BSA decides to offer more programs to girls.
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