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Everything posted by yknot

  1. I think you are in the majority. This perspective is part of the curriculum and/or character education programs in a lot of public schools today, maybe most, beginning at the early elementary grades and has been for at least 10 years. Kids who learn one level of awareness in the school and community setting are frequently uncomfortable with the different viewpoints and practices that they encounter in the scouting environment. We went from having a handful of OA candidates each year to having zero for the last several I was involved. The NA aspect wasn't a draw, it was a deterrent as far as we
  2. One of the issues is that there is no central "government" for many of these groups. There is controversy and disagreement within the NA community about who is or is not in a position to speak on these issues. There is no consensus, so the issue for BSA all along has been that it cannot truthfully claim that it has the permission or the blessing of any group to continue its questionable practices. There is no centralized, universally recognized group equivalent to a national government. This has not changed over the hundreds of years that Europeans have been interacting with native Americans b
  3. If, for some reason, you put a few hundred kids in flying monkey suits in the night sky above you, and you knew they were there and unseen in the dark, you wouldn't risk pointing your laser up there during an astronomy lesson, would you? I would think you would want to give their eyes a wide berth. I'm not a Leave No Trace instructor, but I think the whole point of LNT is to universally leave things that are out there in their own habitat unharmed and undisturbed within it as much as possible. At least by scouts. Googling pretty much confirms that lasers are harmful or at least disruptiv
  4. Well, try Mr. Google. You can learn all about how lasers are used in bird dispersal. Or there are Audubon chapters in almost every state. Stop by and talk to someone sometime. We're supposed to be an outdoors conservation minded organization. I would think stuff like this wouldn't exactly be news.
  5. We have an observatory in our state park and the astronomers don't use laser pointers for scout talks during spring and fall migration. Songbirds migrate at night. The beam doesn't have to be pointed at them to disorient them.
  6. Bring the binoculars, leave the laser pointers at home. Just fyi, as per below, lasers can be disruptive to bird species, especially during migration months when many migrate at night, and are not allowed in many parks. Using lasers at night is not in alignment with leave no trace principals. https://www.nps.gov/subjects/watchingwildlife/gear.htm Also, regulations regarding possession, safe usage, etc., can vary by state and even municipality. Some shore communities have completely banned their use.
  7. That, and the fact that the cub program itself is very redundant with the school curriculum. They are doing a lot of these things two, three, and four times in the course of a couple years. In my district, almost every kindergarten class goes to the police station and the fire station. Plus fire stations are a popular kid party place. There leventy nine other examples of that in cubs.
  8. In the current bankruptcy case, I am pretty sure I saw some cases that were "estate of... " Maybe one of our legal eagles would remember or know where to find where those cases might be listed to provide an example.
  9. It's a bit sexist to think these concerns are limited to Millennial women. As far as the NFL example, female viewership has increased but youth participation has steadily declined and less than half of Americans now think football is a suitable activity for youth.
  10. We never registered a scout unless the parent also took YPT. Unit rule which solved that problem.
  11. All of scouting is supposed to be 100% transparent to parents even if they are not your ideal parents from a program standpoint. I don't really think any other position is acceptable today.
  12. Good point. I don't think I can take going down some of these rabbit holes again.
  13. It's a big country so it's probably not universal but around here parents are not accepting of adults without kids camping or interacting with kids. It's the same in sports. The only guy I know who was accepted was a pop warner football coach who made the draft but had four daughters.
  14. I just don't see girls as being all that pivotal either way. They are a great and no brainer addition to a youth organization but in the scheme of things, at least here in the US, I'm not sure it has had much bearing other than providing a helpful blip through a couple of very dark years. Where the UK is concerned, I think some of its success has more to do with the fact that it has had consistent, identifiable, high profile advocates from the late Queen to Bear Grylls to more lately Catherine Middleton. They are so high profile, we are aware of their involvement even in the US. I also think t
  15. I wouldn't draw too tight a relationship between some of those trends because over the past 25 years there have been a lot of other things at play including a more universal disenchantment with scouting. A portion of my family is in Scouts Canada, in some cases in both Scouts Canada and BSA, and when talking to them, the view is more nuanced. Scouts Canada has been impacted by the Francophone and anti Commonwealth movement in some provinces that eschews all things British. There is an indigenous movement, much higher profile than here, that eschews all things Colonial. And Canadians in general
  16. I think it's more about the age/timing of when people are looking to move their kids as well as the fact that scouting accomplishments apart from Eagle are almost meaningless to people outside scouting. If you write on your child's application to a private middle school that they just achieved Arrow of Light, the highest rank in cub scouts, it sounds good and shows completion. Six months later trying to explain where Tenderfoot or Second Class falls in scouting or what it means is not particularly as easy or clear cut. Of course there are plenty of people who push their kids to Eagle at 13 so
  17. You are joking but in reality parents will list it as a credential on applications to private schools. There aren't a lot of comparable accomplishments in that age group for parents who are looking to get into competitive middle schools.
  18. Like the weather, that varies according to where you live.
  19. Where does end of school year have a set date? We used to get out as late as June 28. Some private schools got out later or earlier. Our Council used to have a Webelos Woods camp out for cross overs in July after everyone was out. For kids who are taking make up courses, the end of the school year is over the summer. Unless that's some rule I've missed, I think it's probably any date before Labor Day.
  20. Exactly. There is controversy surrounding who is a federally recognized tribe vs. who is not; there are multiple advocacy or heritage associations for the same parent tribe; there are disagreements between tribal groups; there is disagreement over who is local vs. who is not, etc.
  21. Every single state east of the Mississippi has either federally or state recognized tribes or unrecognized but active heritage tribal associations. They are pretty easy to find. That's one of the complaints of the indigenous community. People seem blind to the fact that they are all still right here, all over the place, just as other groups are. If you want to start learning about your local tribal groups, just google Indian Tribal groups in XXX state and you'll find them. Most states have tribal relations, affairs, or resource departments or agencies.
  22. You are referring to the parents leaving the pack meeting? That's not rumor, that happened to me in my unit when I was the Committee Chair and one of my Webelos co-leaders was the one who arranged the visit. She had done the same thing a few years prior for her older son. She was shocked. We all were -- we'd seen it before, didn't really think much about it. Myself and the Cubmaster were the ones who had to smooth it over with the district. It's also not the only incident I'm aware of.
  23. At the pack level some years ago, one of the leaders excitedly brought in some OA dancers, thinking it would thrill the youth and inspire word of mouth recruitment. Instead, at least half the parents dragged their cubs out the door within minutes and pack leadership had to subsequently field some rather outraged questions from the school district since it was held in a gym, and issue assurances it would never happen again. At the troop level, interest in OA has been zero to minimal for the better part of a decade. Parents and youth here are heavily focused on pursuing Eagle and any other acco
  24. It seemed most of the commenters were survivors. I'm glad most of them stopped commenting -- everything seemed to be very triggering to the point that I worried about state of mind for some of them. It's good if, with the sense that the bulk of this has been decided, good or bad, for them, they have moved on. It would be unhealthy to remain in that state of agitation throughout the appeal process. Although I imagine if anything significant crops up, they'll be back.
  25. What connection does the Order of the Arrow have with North America indigenous cultures? As far as I know, it is a BSA honor and service society. Is service performed for local tribes or reservations as part of OA society membership? Do the local tribes and communities benefit from volunteer hours given by OA members or from any fundraising efforts or support, either from the local OA lodge, national group, or the BSA? Do OA members volunteer their time on reservations they way they do to council camps? Are there any kinds of standardized BSA scholarship programs offered to reservation youth?
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