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Everything posted by Buggie

  1. My pedantic mind always goes into logic mode. Sure, the MBC isn't registered at council this year. The cards are all dated last year by the MBC Signature. Was the MBC listed in the BSA last year and during that time period, were they registered as MBC for those badges. If they weren't, the whole set of blue cards aren't valid. Which is a tough thing to tell the Scout. If they were, you can't retest. All you can do is advise that this will be noticed again and could be questioned. You have to accept the cards as valid (with the exception of the one card with the subject line crossed off).
  2. Buggie

    YPT required one year out to recharter?

    @Eagledad At what point would you report? We all have that line we find ourselves having crossed where we realize we have to do something.
  3. Buggie

    YPT required one year out to recharter?

    Then they report it. I'd get investigated. Maybe my time in scouts comes to an end. I get what you and others are saying. A rash report could jeopardize and ruin someone's life and reputation. I'm not calling for rash reports. And yes, I fully admit that one can get into difficult decisions about this. It isn't easy. The grey areas are where the predators love to roam. And like you have acknowledged, a non-report could do far, far worse if abuse is going on. But again, look at what the training tells us to do. It says not to determine if there's something going on by ourselves or with our fellow local scouters. Report it to national. Plain and simple. If you witness something happen that is in violation of YPT, report it. In YPT what we're taught about is grooming. It isn't only used upon a youth. It is used on adults as well. It's a slow build up of trust to increase the predators alone time with their target and to make it easier for them to get with that child, in or outside of official scouting events. Even to make adults doubt a child if they do report it. Also to make other adults doubt an adult who reports something may be going on. Grooming is to make other adults trust the sexual predator and think of them as an okay or good person. Grooming seeks to make us support the predator because we find them credible. And to believe them when they say they haven't done anything wrong. And it's easy to fall into it. We are all subject to someone manipulating us. An experienced predator could be skilled in getting our trust. To make us see them as a good person. To make their actions seem honest and above reproach. Reading the reports on how sexual abuse starts, it commonly begins with an adult getting the trust of the youth and the probably the youth's parents. For scouting, it's about getting the trust of the adults in scouting as well. The predator counts on it to be innocent looking. For example, the scout needs a ride to/from scouting. Parents say it is okay. What's the harm? The harm is that this is how grooming starts. Nothing will likely occur in the beginning of these situations because the predator is building trust. Yet they have violated YPT by being alone with the scout that isn't their kid in a one-on-one situation. Grooming in this case is about gaining that trust from the adults. In the real life situation I talked about in the earlier post? I was making sure no one-on-one occurred. I'm still not comfortable with it, because I know how easy it could be for that adult to have their kid unable to make scouts for a night or an event, and suddenly they are now in a one-on-one situation at some point in driving the other scouts to/from scouting. And while I don't believe this scouter is doing anything bad, how could I possibly know? That's what grooming does. It makes us believe the scouter couldn't be doing anything wrong, even when they are willingly breaking YPT. That's what reporting is supposed to get around. We are compromised when it comes to judgement because we can buy into the grooming. We won't report this good person because obviously they were giving the kid a ride to and from scouts. That's all they are doing. And we can believe that nothing happened. And probably nothing did happen. But will that always be the case? That's what grooming is all about. Building that trust. For most folks, hey, we're helpful. We have good intentions of helping our scouts and we want them to succeed. In our endeavor to do good for our scouts, we can put ourselves in situations that can look like grooming. A predator is looking for ways to build and bank that trust and get into those situations that they can take advantage of. That's why I say, ever vigilant. That's why the rules of YPT are so important to be followed at all times. Specifically, no one-on-one with a scout that isn't your kid. So for me, what separates a rash report from a legitimate report? Intention of YPT violation. If you purposefully are getting into a one-on-one situation like driving a scout, even with permission of the parents. That's means you are purposefully violating youth protection training. If you are purposefully walking off with a scout alone to go look at something cool, yup, violation. Is there always a clear cut way of designating this? Nope. Never will be. I'm looking for clear violations. I'm also looking out for my fellow scouters as I know and hope they are for me. I am also taking note if there's that one person, who seems to be getting into the pickle more often than not. Ever vigilant. May sound paranoid, but frankly, I don't give a damn how it sounds or looks. My scouts are worth it.
  4. Buggie

    YPT required one year out to recharter?

    I know it will seem harsh, but YPT dictates a report to national. You took the training. You should be doing the same thing. I'd also report to SM, CC, and COR unless one of them was the one I was reporting. It might end my involvement in scouting because I reported someone that people in charge like, but I've read too many articles, some mentioned here in this forum, where the situation is pushed off because the scouter would never and they are good folk etc. Only to find out later that they aren't as good as everyone thinks. In a lot of those stories, they talk to the guy, it's explained off, national never knows, and the abuse might take a slight vacation, then start back up with care not to tip anyone off again. Frankly, I'd rather save a kid from potential abuse than worry how it affects me or feel sorry because some scouter was stupid enough to forget YPT in a way that has to be reported. I've seen this before. I've had my own kid get targeted by the husband of a minister at church. (He got arrested by the FBI a year later for trying to hook up with teenagers nearby.) Post incidence and with this training, it is completely obvious what the guy was doing. This is not a "gee, don't do this again" situation when you're dealing with the life of a kid. Once I became aware, I swore I will never hesitate to report. Too many articles mention how "gee, don't do this again" results in the wrong thing. I'd also hate to be that scouter who had the chance to stop something, but didn't. I'm vocal about this with my troop. I've been vocal about this on this forum. The danger is far too real and too devastating for it to be treated without the proper response. And before anyone starts crying, "but it was just a slip up!" There are slip ups. When you have a scout follow you and put you in a 1-on-1 situation. When you turn around and realize you are alone with a scout. That's when you step away immediately. You can excuse yourself saying you have to go some place like the restroom or something. Haul your behind out of that situation. There isn't a slip up if you're taking a scout home with only the two of you in the car. You have to have good enough sense to think ahead. Your fellow scouters should have good enough sense to support you in looking ahead. If not, I'm reporting and let National sort it out. It's too dangerous to leave the scout alone! Then get a good chunk of distance. I follow a scout from at a distance if we are in a 1 on 1. I make sure they are safe. If I need to, I'll grab an adult on the way. Amazing how other troop's and scouters will lend a hand when they know it's about YPT. Heck, I've slipped up where at summer camp, I'm dropping scouts off returning from a field trip. I dropped too many off at once. Suddenly realized I was in a one on one. "Sorry scout, you're going to have to get off here." Been in the trailer, turned around, urchin at the elbow. "Let's get out of the trailer." And then thankful that the SM showed up at that moment because he saw the scout walk in and knew I was in there. I've provided the wingman support for other scouters. We do have situations like this all the time. Scouts don't think about this, even if we tell them about it. They trust us. They trust us to protect them. To keep them from harm. Don't be that scouter who lets them down.
  5. Buggie

    YPT required one year out to recharter?

    I would say "yes" because we still have issues with folk who have passed YPT and do it. Also folks who pass YPT and don't follow the process of vigilance and reporting, because <name> is such a good person, they couldn't possibly be doing that. the other day I exercised my YPT muscles by verifying a scouter who took other scouts home was following YPT in the process. (he was thankfully) and I would not have hesitated to report him if he wasn't. He might be a great guy and making a simple error, but these scouts depend on us to defend them. There's no way I can judge if he's innocently forgetting an element of YPT or doing something more diabolical. How many times do we read those news articles where the good scouter was just helping out a scout, only to find it was all part of grooming and ultimately, worse. Requiring us all to take YPT covers the legal point of you acknowledge that you took training that told you that it was wrong. It also reminds you that you have to be on the watch at all times. There are definitely elements of the old training I liked. But there are elements of this new training I really feel are important.
  6. Buggie

    Changing BSA's Image

    After taking a hard and professional look at everything going on and all the problems we are facing. I think we're going to need more popcorn.
  7. Buggie

    Bikes in Camp?

    Our council camp allows bikes for staff, scouts, and scouters as long as they also use helmets. Rarely do you see anyone use them though. Most find them to get in the way of things as they have to park them out of the way of main traffic zones etc. Most times I only see a few staff use them, rarely any scouts unless there is some need for them. Most common wheeled vehicles one sees are wagons and "cars on approval". The wagons haul back the ice. Cars are for general staff needs, adults/scouts with mobility issues where warranted, or field trips out of the camp.
  8. One of our elder scout leaders was talking (hooray for Scouting Heritage MB) to some scouts about the days of yore... somewhere around the late 70's. Oh how I wish I had that recorded. Anyway, he talked about one of the SMs of the time after lunch was done brought out a live chicken. "Here's dinner. I'm going to teach you how to do this." He then proceeded to assist/teach the scouts in the process of making a live chicken a cooked chicken dinner. I don't know who killed the chicken (some legends say he still wanders the woods today), but the SM definitely showed/taught the scouts with them doing the hands on how to pluck, gut, and cut the chicken into the ingredients for chicken dinner. Then they cooked that chicken for supper in a most scout like fashion. Go Camp Fire! Most definitely not something you would see today. Got propane? If you get down to it, it's comparable with the skills for cleaning fish. Honestly though, most folks are more likely to clean fish than prepare animals (chicken/rabbit). I would never show scouts this with a live chicken today. Even with permission/agreement of parents/family/troop/scouts/CO etc, no way I'd touch that landmine. However I am all for buying a whole chicken and working with the scouts how to cut it up, demonstrate on my own bird and let them work on theirs. That's a skill most folks don't know about, sadly. I had to learn as an adult and I still need more practice at it because it is cheaper and easier to buy it pre-cut and even de-boned. This is something we even had a debate/discussion with the other adults in my current unit about. Yes, it is far easier to buy something ready to cook, but it is cheaper and more satisfying to do scratch when you can. Adults also like the easy life. I'm all for using the knife. Sadly, while I can say I'm no expert at all, I am better than most of my fellow scouters in my cutting/chopping skills.
  9. Buggie

    The Lost Art of the Tarp....

    My son's former troop used the 2x2x( 6 or 8 ) lumber for their tarp poles. Mostly they used ridge lines where possible between trees and the poles were used on the edges. They also used a self made quonset hut for longer stays (rebar/plastic conduit/rope/bungee balls/tarp), especially for summer camps. They had enough to make super long ones or a couple of them to break them into their own units. Either way, the longer poles or plastic conduit usually required a pickup to carry because of their length.
  10. Buggie

    possible fee increase coming

    Except of course, that the scout has to show leadership and you'd have a tough time selling that leadership of one counts.
  11. Are you asking about team performance or public perception?
  12. Buggie

    Council lost application

    My council is notorious for losing paperwork. Most often, it isn't lost per se. More that the form is lacking some information or something is incomplete or not checked off, so instead of communicating the situation back to the unit/individual, they toss it and you have to figure it out months later and submit new paperwork. And likewise, even when it is received and processed, that isn't always updated on the right systems. Add the fact that some committees are horrible at following the status of things online and you can have situations where a leader is not official registered for over a year, even after paying rechartering etc. So ask me how I feel this whole re-do of background checks are going to go? My troop wasn't aware it was going to happen and as of last week, they didn't have a plan for a mass collection of the forms etc. I can see units having big problems with lost background checks.
  13. Buggie

    possible fee increase coming

    I brought up the subject of fee increases to the SM/COR in my troop and they had no idea it was coming. Desertrat77 and I share the same council, so I'm thankful he stated that council is clueless. At least now I know why my troop hasn't heard anything yet. My troop and myself like so many others, can not generally absorb sudden fee increases. I tend to do long term planning to avoid the sudden major fees, like summer camp. If I plan on going next year, I drop $20 a month into my scout account so that I can stay ahead of the wave. However when my son was in scouting, we didn't do that for him though we should have. My troop already charges the scouts more than the standard $33 for recharter. I don't know how parents will react to a substantial increase.
  14. Buggie

    The Frugal Camp Menu

    Not sure what time machine you've used, but unless you're talking "fun size" that price is way off. Hey, it's near Halloween. Forage that way. LOL
  15. I would add that for a training hike, you want them to be hauling gear like they would be for the later, more difficult hikes. A light pack sounds good, but if you aren't used to the weight you're going to be carrying later, it might be a surprise. Also the 5 mile hike should be as if you've got the full set of gear. Nothing helps shed pounds like realizing you don't need everything you thought you needed.
  16. Buggie

    Completed MB?

    It's been stated in another reply above. But the appropriate response is in several points. He has a signed card saying he's earned it. You have to accept that card. There's nothing you can do to stop that from happening. You will get shot down by council or national if you try and do nothing but build resentment with everyone. You could explain why the requirements weren't fully completed, but you'll likely get gruff for it from the parent. Better yet to determine how each requirement was or was not met, to feed into the next bullet... You definitely should complain to the merit badge college etc that the MBC did not do their duty with details.
  17. Buggie

    divvying up costs for meals

    Our scouts make their menus. Pay the fee set for the weekend. (includes food and whatever costs, but generally only food) The night before they meet at the store and with their budget, shop for their food together. Adults are there getting their food with their menu/budget. We meet and go through the registers, paying out and then loading the ice chests. Drop them off into the trailer and done. Next day, camping fun.
  18. This article hits some of the key notes of YPT in that it talks about grooming. Not only of the kids, but conditioning the adults views. It also emphasised one of the big reasons folks don't follow through with reporting. In this case the abuser was well known and admired/liked (the conditioning I spoke of). Lastly it brings up a situation that makes things like this very difficult to report, the power/authority the abuser can have on the community. And a community can be large as a city/region/state or as small as the scouting council/district/troop. We can never relax in our review of everyone around us. We must watch and ensure that YPT is constantly followed. It can be as simple as seeing where another adult needs some backup because by accident they wandered out of range into a 1 on 1 situation or a scout wandered into a 1 on 1. It can happen very innocently enough. I do this for my scouters and they do this for me. I like to think of it as an adult buddy system. The most important thing I pray for is that we have the courage and bravery to follow through and do the reporting. Especially when it is a friend who violated the rules. Even when doing so could destroy us. People are known to vigorously defend the accused even to the point of willful blindness of the evidence. The consequences of not following YPT are destructive to those we are trusted to protect.
  19. Buggie

    Back to school night recruitment

    The "what den our your kids in" is a classic type of question that feeds into the next question of "why are you doing this then". And I get it and I agree that parents should ask simply because when it comes to protecting our kids, it isn't a spectator role. Might not make us feel all that good with someone eyeing us with suspicion, but no harm with folks being curious. And as with everything, you have to watch folks who come up with a crazy idea and if they try to spread it around. There's always those kinds of parents and they will dream something up no matter what is going on. And frankly, I LIKE not having an adult leader with their kid currently in the unit. I've seen a lot of adults play favoritism with their own and even when they don't try, other adults tend to favor their kids if that adult is in some position of power. We adults whose kids have moved on or even if we don't have a kid in scouting, enjoy being scouters and helping the kids. I love being able to be there when I'm needed. I love not being needed too, where I can enjoy a camping trip and stay out of their way. I especially like the questions of, "how did you tie that rope" when I set up a ridge line.
  20. Buggie

    Old Scouter, new to Forum

    *reads the very long and wonderful lists of all things scouting you have supported in your many years of activity and service* So.... a slacker then? 😃 Welcome to the campfire. Looking forward to all the wisdom you have to share.
  21. Buggie

    Philmont Gear Review

    Good idea. I normally keep it elevated off the ground and on my tote which I spray with some bug spray as a barrier, but my big concern deals with small critters crawling their way inside of he unit through some crack. The provisions I take are my best response so far. In a tent, far less issues with wandering bugs. And the old saying, "Gravity never lets me down." *thud*
  22. Buggie

    Philmont Gear Review

    I wouldn't mind camping with a hammock, but I drag along a CPAP with a deep cycle battery. (we don't go far from the trailer, so carrying isn't an issue.) Sort of tethers me to the ground via the hose. I prefer to put my Sansbug (netting pop-up shelter) on the ground or on a cot and if needed, string a tarp on a ridge line. If I know the weekend will have storms or if it is winter then I'll use a tent. Currently our troop only has one hammock-eteer (adult) and that's the only way he wants to camp. I admire him because he keeps his gear down to a single backpack. I had a hammock, but at last year's summer camp the rope attached to the tree broke while I was in it. Luckily 1) I was relaxed so the sudden drop to the ground didn't give me time to tense up 2) I had cleared any rocks/debris out from under the hammock 3) I had placed a camping pillow under my head. My fellow adult leaders didn't bother getting out of their respective chair/tent. Only offering their concerns before going back to sleep. LOL I was a little sore, but nothing bad. Didn't need to nap after that.
  23. Buggie

    Back to Scouting

    Definitely shop around for a troop that fits the needs both ways. And as stated, be careful that you don't get over volunteered. I advise easing into things, taking the training online up front so that you know how scouting works these days. Some things remain the same and a lot of other things change over time. All of it is free to take online, so it's a great primer. And it's nice to be able to answer that you've recently retaken a lot of training. If you did your IOLS back in the day, that's fine. Modern IOLS isn't going to teach you anything new, but it might introduce you to others in your area. And it's all about knowing folks and sharing you're excitement. Drop by your district's round table and introduce yourself. It's a great way to meet a lot of folks from a lot of other troops and you might spark some friendships that lead you in. But above all, make sure you've got your YPT training done first. Being able to state that you're aware of the awesome responsibility involving working with youth and that you would like to meet folks and their troops is a great step forward. And as stated above, Venturing and other arms of scouting are all wonderful ways to be involved.
  24. Buggie

    Patrol Method Started!

    I wanted to share some success from this weekend. Since I joined two years-ish ago, I have been trying to effect a change in our troop to move towards the Patrol Method. I was accompanied by a very experienced ASM who joined in the spring. Together we've been talking to the SM about the Patrol Method, tag teaming him in small ways with encouragement etc that makes the SM more inclined to think Patrol Method. Stuff he already knows, but hasn't been doing. He and the "Wanna-Be-SM" have been making excuses about why they aren't doing the Patrol Method. Really stupid excuses like "but you know they won't do it" and other things. Yah, they won't do X when they know you will do it. Or the scouts tried to do X and then SM/Wanna-Be-SM barge in and take everything over, brushing anything the scouts have done out of the way. So this weekend the SM saw me talking with the new SPL. I was explaining basic Patrol Method stuff. I had his ear driving to the campsite too, along with the acting ASPL. The SM supported it for the first time I've ever seen. The wanna-be-SM also saw how the wind was blowing and stood back more than normal. It's a step in the right direction. Us adults talked Patrol Method at several points in the day. We started mentoring the scout leadership group (SPLs & PLs) in things they needed to know in how to lead their troop/patrol. We pushed the scouts back to their troop leaders to find the answers they needed. We let them make mistakes and work through them for the most part. Can't get all the adults out of their habits in a single weekend. All in all, a very nice and good step in the right direction. I'm hoping to keep that progress and will continue to do what I can to encourage things to the right direction. My next major goal is having a PLC without extra adults in the room trying to run things. Haven't seen a PLC in all the time I've been in this troop.
  25. Buggie

    Patrol Method Started!

    Also was fun explaining to a first year why sweat bees were very pleased with their kitchen area. After a meal of watermelon, brownies, pink lemon aide, and chili made with baked beans (they seemed to love it) was left out after supper. Course the scouts didn't clean up right away, and all ran off to do something way over there. So when this one scout and his buddy came back to get a drink, they find all these bees loving their kitchen and dining area. Minor freak out ensues. Why doesn't the adult kitchen and eating area have bees? Because they like sweet things and we're all bitter and sour. That or we cleaned everything up right after supper. Also fun, scout needs X and can't find it in the trailer. Okay, I'll go to the trailer. Stand outside the trailer while I go inside to get it. No, don't come in with me. Stand out here. ... Why are you in here with me? I need you to go stand outside the trailer please. Ah, SM. thank goodness you're here. I needed another adult to assist. LOL