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InquisitiveScouter

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Posts posted by InquisitiveScouter

  1. 14 hours ago, AwakeEnergyScouter said:

    You do realize this forum is the social equivalent of us standing in a town square in our uniforms saying everything we've ever said here every second of every day to anyone who cares to listen, including scouts?

    No, it isn't.

    You have no idea who @fred8033 is.  That account could be a Scouter, or it could be someone posing as a Scouter, or it could (these days) be a large language model chatbot posting.  Or it could be one of my alter egos trolling you, and complete fiction.

     

  2. Just now, OaklandAndy said:

    Isn't that what the topic is? It sounds like members have an issue with them in Scouting period, not necessarily in their unit or CO. Which goes back to my original point. 

    What the CO decides is correct, however, your CO's decision doesn't speak for the entire organization, which is what is happening here. 

    Completely agree, see my immediately previous post.

     

  3. 9 minutes ago, OaklandAndy said:

    The way I see it, when you register (or re-register) as an adult leader, you are agreeing to uphold the decisions and responsibilities mandated by the organization, regardless of your personal feelings. If you can't do that, then you leave the organization (like so many already have) and carry on with your life. No different from any other private membership organization. 

    Yes, change takes time. But getting use to the change and refusing to are completely separate feelings. And in the eyes of the organization, they are going to move on with or without you. 

     

    Not quite...

    For example, a CO and Unit Committee can choose not to allow someone who is openly gay (or a sex-changer) be a leader or youth in their unit.

    In the case of the adult, if their lifestyle is not in line with the views and morals of the CO, then they have every right to exclude that person from their unit.  But, not from Scouting...

    In the case of the youth, issues of sexuality should never be on the menu... but if they youth and or family push that agenda, then the unit has every right to exclude them as incompatible with their aims for their unit.  But, they cannot exclude the youth from Scouting...

    • Upvote 1
  4. 20 hours ago, yknot said:

    We don't tolerate leaders with out of date views on other safety issues like shooting sports, water sports, or other aspects of youth protection. 

    Absolutely, we tolerate those with those "views".  What we do not tolerate is those who "act" against others in accordance with those views.

    What you are advocating is akin to being the "Thought Police."

    Not knowing the other specifics of the OP (that is, having only one version of the events), my pronouncement was simply that it was wrong of the person to use an open forum to vent his misgivings about membership policies.  And, it was also a failure by the discussion moderators there to not steer that person into other territory.  Zoom hosts can mute or boot anyone from a session.  They should feel free to use that power, but judiciously.

    14 hours ago, yknot said:

    verbal or physical threats weren't made against those children by other scouts or adult leaders.

    Where did that enter the equation in this thread??  I scanned the other pages and did not see anything about someone making threats??

    • Upvote 1
  5. 19 minutes ago, Armymutt said:

    Here's the link to one of them on the council website: https://www.mccscouting.org/content/115391/2024-Girl-Camporee-of-the-East-Coast--Girl-Camporee-of-the-East-Coast
     

    I would refuse to let my daughter go to one of these if offered in our council.  Every group faces challenges.  We wouldn't have a "Military Dependent Camporee", even though those kids routinely have to move, make new friends, get pushed around, don't get selected for Vigil, have a harder time making Eagle, etc.  

    What does the "I" in DEI stand for?  Hmmmm...

    • Like 1
  6. 4 hours ago, qwazse said:

    @Armymutt, I wouldn’t say that it’s the norm. I mean, wanting to “go full on papa bear” is one natural reaction in the context of all that we know about the prevalence of abuse among teens, and the disproportionate prevalence among females. It takes a while to balance out that protective streak with lived experience working with other leaders to deal with problems of substance.
    So, it’s likely that this kind of thing will arise fairly regularly.

    It isn’t all that new. And the behavior also happens in unisex environments. It probably has been happening in BSA and GS/USA since the 60s, contributing a little bit to scout resentment and the gradual membership decline that we’ve seen ever since.

    @Armymutt, I think you'd agree it's like being in the military:

    The best thing about being in the military (or Scouts) is some of the people you get to work with.

    The worst thing about being in the military (or Scouts) is some of the people you get to work with. 

    😉 😉 😜 😜 😜 

    • Haha 2
    • Upvote 1
  7. Other folks out there with local-run Scout Shops?  Please post their phone numbers for @negot8or

    Also, here is the store locator.  You can click on each to find a phone number.

    https://www.scoutshop.org/storelocator

    I do not think you can distinguish between local, council-run shops, and those that have space leased out to National...

    For the ones that are National-run, I believe inventory is more centrally controlled, and when items are discontinued, they sometimes get "called back" to supply centers for disposal...

    But, I could be way off base with that... That is the story I have gotten from a regional store manager some years ago.  Have not check the veracity of that claim.

  8. 11 hours ago, negot8or said:

    Hi. I’m trying to find the following belt loops. Happy to pay for them plus shipping!

    1. Tiger - Earning Your Stripes

    2. Tiger - Tiger Theater

    3. Wolf - Collections & Hobbies

    4. Webelos - Maestro

    Any or all would be appreciated!  Thanks!

    All out of stock on scoutshop.org, but try local council Scout Shops that are not run by National.

    Garden State Council is one...609-261-5850  If they have them, they'll take your credit card info over the phone for charges and shipping.

    There are others... many may still have loops in stock, as once they purchase from National, they often cannot return them.  A saavy local shopkeeper can check inventory in other stores to help.  YMMV.

    I have had items like this shipped from all over the country to our location.

    Happy Hunting!

  9. 11 hours ago, cgail said:

    Argh!  

     

    Cotton... what is wrong with cotton?  

     

    - Cotton doesn't kill.... wet cotton kills (in cold weather)  Cotton has an affinity for water (hydrophilic), and is therefore difficult to dry.  It does not wick away moisture, buts holds it, and therein lies the problem in cold weather.  Makes a great towel for that reason, though!

    - Cotton shrinks (but can be pre-shrunk)

    - Cotton wrinkles (ironing, anyone?)

    - I love cotton, in hot weather 😜 

  10. 44 minutes ago, MyIndianNameIsSpoon said:

    Not certain that this is in the right thread, but here goes:

    Let's say a scout unit's chartering organization is located in District A, but it meets in District B. Questions include:

    - what district is the unit a part of?

    - which district executive supports that unit?

    - at the time of recharter, is the unit supported by the staff of District A or District B?

    Finally, does National have any policy on this? 

    The questions arise due to adjustment of district boundaries; among other things, some units believe they will no longer be able to participate in activities conducted by their former district, because of the way the lines were drawn.

    Thoughts? Questions? Thanks in advance for your input.

    The unit is in District A, the location of your CO.  The CO owns the unit, regardless of where it meets.

    The DE for District A supports.

    At recharter, same as above... DE for District A.

    No, no National policy... the only thing remotely covering is that the council has geographic boundaries... and CO's located in those boundaries are chartered within that council.

    The council gets to determine its own geographic or functional boundaries for its districts.

    • Upvote 2
  11. 4 hours ago, Newschoolscoutdad said:

    I know this is a Topic discussed a lot in a way.  I understand going to businesses to ask for donation can effect the council asking for donations.  My question is more for non businesses.  As troops would like to upgrade or replace troop equipment in their trailer that only belongs to the troop why could they not put out on Facebook or at events that they are looking for these items and if someone personally would donate them,  Would that be looked down upon if it is not does anyone have suggestions.  I ask this question because my sons troop is in a small community.  Doing pancake breakfast and things like that are not good as they usually bring in $100 or less.  I feel that you would be better to put a wish list out at Community events that you are volunteering at.  If I can get the camo fire's opinion I would appreciate it.

    @Newschoolscoutdad, welcome!

    That is a great idea!  But, since you would still be soliciting a donation, just ask for council approval...

    Fill out the BSA Fundraising Application and send it in.  https://filestore.scouting.org/filestore/pdf/34427.pdf

    Attach a short letter explaining what it is you want to do, and how you want to do it.  Give a ballpark figure for the value of the equipment you'll be asking for.  Set an end date for seeking the donations, and stick to it.  (You can take down that entry on Facebook or other platforms, right?)

    Councils approve GoFundMe's for Eagle Projects all the time.  I don't see this as being much different.  You never get what you don't ask for, so ASK FOR IT!

    And let us know what your council says!

    Although... reading the application a bit more, it does say "At no time are units permitted to solicit contributions for unit programs."  So, that might be a hard "No."

     

     

  12. 23 minutes ago, DannyG said:

    I will make an assumption that the troop always travels with these signs, so that the girls troop has separate facilities from the adult male leadership, as YPT requires. 

    I am surprised that camp staff couldn't find compromise acceptable for both troops. I advise book a different campsite. Or find another camp altogether. 

    Does not require separate facilities... G2SS is quite clear...

    Separate shower and latrine facilities should be provided for male and female adults as well as for male and female youth. If separate facilities are not available, separate times should be scheduled and posted.

    Should does not mean must.

     

    • Upvote 2
  13. A Scout is Courteous.

    And their actions were not.

    If the site facilities are shared, then they are shared.  If anyone put up a sign that said "females only", I would first address it with the Camp Commissioner/Director.  If Camp Staff did not put up the sign, I'd take it down for the other Troop and return it.  And then put up a sign that said "Shared Use." or "Unisex."

    And I would tell my Scouts to use that shower.

    If you do not get a sensible solution from Troop/Commissioner/Camp Director, call your own Scout Executive.

     

     

     

    • Upvote 2
  14. 4 minutes ago, FireStone said:

    I thought that one of the points of YPT was to, in fact, shield scouts from people wishing to do harm? A lot of YPT is about prevention. Allowing hateful comments to remain on BSA social media posts (many remain and aren't deleted) seems like it would go against what we're trained to do, to stop the harm from continuing.

    We wouldn't just opt to ignore bullying comments made in-person, we respond to them, stop them, and address the scout or scouts making them.

    Comments made to make scouts feel unwelcome in the BSA constitute bullying, no matter where they happen. We certainly can't shield scouts from them everywhere, certainly not all over the Internet, but we should be able to react to them with the world of scouting in, in our units, camps, and the online social environments that we can control, along the same lines that we would respond to any such incident of bullying and/or harassment according to YPT policies and processes. The BSA has the ability to better respond to these kinds of comments, especially within their own social channels. I believe that they should.

    Do you go to school with them?  Sports? Church? Vacation? Everyday life outside of Scouting?

    We have no mandate to impose our standard of care outside of the auspices of the BSA events where we are supervising Scouts.

    Should you choose to do so, best wishes in your endeavors.  I think you have found a nice windmill, don Quixote.

    In the very limited contact I have with them, I seek to arm my Scouts with tools to deal with those situations, and launch them into the wide world to find their own way.  It is very empowering for them, rather than looking to me to fight their battles.

     

     

    • Upvote 1
  15. 39 minutes ago, FireStone said:

    Instagram is a public forum. And the BSA is tagging the troops they repost content from, so the scouts and scouters in those troops can (and do) see the comments. 

    Yes I spoke up, as I intend to do anywhere I see this stuff, as well as share my concerns directly with whoever at National I can get to listen, starting with folks like Lisa Schuchart.

    So... what then? Adults should tell their scouts to not look at the posts the BSA tagged their troop in because of peoples' right to make hateful comments aimed at those scouts? Why do the kids have to look the other way on posts that the BSA is making, which should be a space that all scouts and scouters should feel welcome to view and engage in?

    The BSA has no obligation to allow any comments on their social media posts. Free speech means you can say what you want without government interference. Nothing about free speech says the BSA has to platform hateful comments on their own posts.

    Free speech also doesn't absolve anyone of YPT rules and regulations and the consequences of violating them.

    Agree with much of this.  If Instagram is a public forum (and it is, because government officials use it to engage with the public) then people can say whatever the heck they want.

    Now, BSA tagging and reposting IS a problem.  But that is on BSA...

    And yes, adults should tell their Scouts to ignore posts that BSA has tagged for their Troop, exactly because they (as you say) seem to allow people who make hateful comments.  Your Scouts need to learn to speak up to confront, or ignore, just as you and I do.   There are a lot of hateful people in the world... you are not going to shield your Scouts from them, so teach your Scouts to recognize them and how to deal with them.

    Again, BSA seemingly "endorsing" content by tagging and reposting is problematic... such is a danger of social media.  I tell my Scouts about these dangers in all social media, and explain to them this is but one of the reasons I do not use it. 

    IMO, social media has given a platform for arrogant personalities to amplify, aggregate, and confirm their arrogance and hostility.  (Many times, without any repercussions.) Which is again, why I do not use it.  You can function fine, in fact, even better, in the world without it.

    The draw of social media is that it creates an illusion of "missing out."  And fear of missing out (FOMO) drives a lot of adults and youth to social media.  Tell your Scouts that social media is not their friend.  Social media exists primarily, to use and exploit them through data mining, advertising and monetizing content.  And "... the love of money is the root of all sorts of evil."  Tell your Scouts that, in social media, THEY (and their data) are the product being harvested and sold.  Help them see it for what it really is.

    https://socialmediavictims.org/mental-health/fomo/

    Concur that BSA has no obligation to allow...  and BSA should not "platform hateful comments on their own posts."  Again, sounds like you are railing at BSA primarily, and the haters secondarily...  Tell BSA your opinion that they should either 1) police they content they are endorsing, 2) shutoff the comment features (if they can do that), or 3) abandon the scourge that social media is.

     

     

     

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  16. 41 minutes ago, ToKindle96 said:

    Ignoring rules that don't fit our agenda ("my scouts' ability to scout together") and then making reference to the Scout Law is rich.

    Let's be careful here...

    Rules (and rulemakers) cannot perfectly address all situations.  Just like laws (and lawmakers) cannot.

    There has to be room for judgment, common sense, and matters of conscience.

    For example, take something simple like the speed limit.  It is the law.  Day to day, I obey it, even though it is really inconvenient.  (Yes, I am that guy on the road, in the right lane with cruise control set to the speed limit 😜 ) But, if I am transporting a Scout to the emergency room, you can bet your boots I am speeding.  I will break that law.  The situation demands it.

    For most BSA rules and policies, although they are inconvenient, I obey them.   But I leave room for judgment, common sense, and matters of conscience.  For example, when my son asked to have a friend (who happens to be a Scout) sleep over, and friend's parents approve, it is fine with me, whether my wife is home or not.  I assert that BSA rules take no precedence over my private family life.

    The case you cite is dead on, though... and exposes a hypocrisy.  I see many unit leaders shrug off rules and policies, simply because it is inconvenient.  IMO, these folks are dangerous, as they place themselves above rules, policies, and laws, in more and more situations, out of convenience.  These are the ones who slide down the slippery slope and get to the point where they ignore the rationale behind a certain rule, policy (or law).   And they can wind up getting other people (including youth) hurt or killed.

    I'll list multiple examples of this, if you care...

    • Like 1
    • Upvote 1
  17. 57 minutes ago, FireStone said:

    I'm not a lawyer either and to be honest I'm not sure where the line is drawn between bullying and harassment, or what the overlap is. I used both terms here because I think the repeated nature of some of the offending comments (a few folks seem to be making negative comments on numerous posts), it looks like a campaign of harassment to me. But that's just my opinion, and not legally informed in any way.

    The line for bullying and harassment is at the point where someone is addressing comments at youth, and you ask them to stop.  When they don't, it crosses the line.

    If you just don't like what they are saying, or if their statements are general, and not directed at anyone specifically, it isn't bullying... it is just them being a horrible person.

    In a public forum, people have the freedom of speech.  In a public forum, you have the right to not listen.

    The forum you spoke of in your OP was not a public forum.  (And this is not a public forum either...)  Could/should someone have stepped in?  That was primarily up to whomever owns/moderates that forum.  If you thought it was egregious or threatening, did you speak up there?

     

     

  18. P.S.  We adults do have to limit their appetite.  The Scouts ask to do many more activities than we adult volunteers can support.  But, I have noticed their eyes do tend to be bigger than their stomachs.  That is, the more activities we added, the fewer the average number of Scouts who participated in those activities.  A bit of scarcity in supply seemed to increase the real demand/uptake.

     

     

  19. Target program is negotiable.  Start maybe with identifying how many program elements the adults can support, since that is now the limiting factor.

    Side note: I think this is one of the things killing Scouting.  Back in the day, we got together as a Patrol without adults.  We did hikes, service projects, meetings, or just hung out.  Scouts are not allowed to do such things now.

    After you determine what the adults can support, present that to the PLC.  You saw my earlier post with what the Committee together with the direct contact leaders can do. 

    We have an ASM assigned to each patrol.  So, each patrol is like its own Troop.  The patrol also gets to sprinkle in two or three patrol-only camping trips during the year.

    This takes a good many adults.

    If the ASM has additional bandwidth,  they can do extra patrol activities.  This used to be easier, as they could do day only activities with only an extra parent present.  Now, two registered are required, so it is much more difficult.  Again, killing Scouting IMO.

    We do ask the PLC each time if THEY want to use JTE.  The metrics are useful for determining a quality program.  The PLC has a culture of accepting the JTE targets and using them to help achieve a quality program.

    If they ever decide to ditch it, the Committee will have to be good with it.

     

  20. 23 minutes ago, ramanous said:

    Yes, that sounds much more like I would expect.

    Does the PLC send their "annual plan" directly to the TLC for review or does the SM intercede?

    Does the TLC follow a formal agenda?

    The SM and ASMs mentor the Annual Planning to help the PLC meet their targets, constraints, and restrictions.  (Restrictions like that they cannot plan to do skydiving, hot air balloon trips, parkour, or a Troop boxing tournament... you know, prohibited stuff that they would love to do!)

    And, for clarity, please, what do you mean by TLC?

  21. 4 hours ago, ramanous said:

    So I think one suggestion you're making is to let the patrols self-organize naturally as much as possible?

    We actually have the opposite problem than you, which is our SM refuses to use the patrol method in favor of the SPL running the troop directly (the PLs have no responsibility.) He's been a scouter for a long time, including woodbadge, so its confounding to me (I asked him privately to explain it; that was big mistake.) I'm speculating the Key3 want the troop to be an Eagle Scout factory so they see PL, SPL, etc as just requirements for rank advancement.

    Sounds like you have a continuation of the WEBELOS program.

    Leave immediately.

    DM me with your state and city... if you are near, come visit to see what Patrol Method and Scout-led looks like.

    Fair warning: it is messy, and adults can do it much better... but then it would not be Scouting; it would be WEBELOS again.

     

  22. Parents and Committee members should never do something that Scouts can do for themselves.

    The Scouts choose their program and capture it on the calendar in their "Annual Planning Conference".  Do not let the name fool you.  We have at least two of these each year... one per Senior Patrol Leader tenure.  And they are challenged to look out at least twelve months, so that we always have six months of program on tap.

    Once the Scouts choose their program, it goes to the Committee for "approval."  It is not really so much an "approval" as it is a "yes, we can support this, with the adult constraints we have..."

    For example, the Troop leaders set the constraint of one camping trip per month, and one day-long event (hike, bike, service project, etc.) per month, one long term Summer Camp per year, and one long term "high adventure" per year. That is what we can support with adult supervision requirements levied upon us by National.  Sometimes pop-up events are presented, like an additional service project, and we try to meet those.  Occasionally, (once or twice per year?) we have to cancel an event because we cannot field the adult supervision required.  

    The committee then uses this calendar of activities to determine the unit budget, and, therefore, the targets for unit dues and fundraising for the year...

    At each monthly Committee meeting, the SM and one or two ASMs present a "State of the Troop" and present any issues that have come up.

    The committee goes over the upcoming events and asks if there are any shortfalls in supporting the Troop program. 

    They discuss the status of spending against the budget; adult succession and training; status of equipment and what purchases need to be made to support our Scouts; determine unit policies; discuss the health of the Troop and any disciplinary issues that have come up, to make sure the leaders are handling things in line with parents' wishes. Etc, etc, etc...

    The committee and parents conduct Boards of Review for all ranks (including Eagle Scout); they hear proposals for Eagle Scout projects

    They discuss recharter and JTE progress.

    And much more.  There is always a full agenda.

    Does that help?

     

    • Upvote 1
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