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Posts posted by InquisitiveScouter

  1. 9 minutes ago, Eagledad said:

    First off, in your 1000 or so posts, I can’t recall you saying one positive thing about the BSA. Second, if you don’t preach it, you don’t teach it. The BSA vision is building character. That’s what the organization preaches, and that is what they teach. Not everyone is in it for the vision, but most are. The moral standards of character is still noble.


    No, Barry, it is the volunteers at the unit level who are "teaching" it.  I find few examples in the professional corps who are teaching it.  And I look for them.

    When I do find them, I praise them profusely and support them.  Publicly and privately.  Can't speak for @yknot of course.

    The last three DE's I had significant contact with, who walked the talk, have left BSA employ.  Two of the three because of the internal rottenness they could no longer stomach.

    It's been a long while since I have interacted with an upstanding SE.  Totally agree this is my subjective opinion, and others are free to believe and behave otherwise...

    • Like 1
  2. 57 minutes ago, skeptic said:

    It occurred to me this morning that the problem I, and others, may be having is equating the BSA, the organization with the people behind it.  It is the people that have made the poor choices and not responded as we may think, or even know, today, they likely should.  (We are likely not seeing the total pictures due to time and lack of actual information).   The organization is made up of people, and often those people let it down for whatever reasons.  Having the skill and actually even bravery to stand against wrong actions and especially evil is hard, and far too many of us fail.  It then somehow gets transferred to the larger organization, and all its people, which is where the "broad brush" I speak of comes in.  It is interesting that a quote from a completely unconnected article this morning seems to pinpoint much of this discussion/debate/diatribe.

    "Our society has become so quick to judge and point fingers and blame, and somewhere along the line, we've forgotten about kindness and compassion and forgiveness. And we've forgotten that we're all human and we all make mistakes."



    There really is no concrete thing as an "organization."  That is an "agreed-upon fiction."  People constitute organizations, and without people, there is no organization.  When I refer to the BSA, I refer to the people running it, leading it, and making and/or carrying out the decisions.  And, as is this case, people often hide (retain anonymity) behind the shield of an organization.

    Also, there is a difference between mistakes and immoral actions.  A mistake is something generally done without intent, or out of ignorance.  I am very forgiving of mistakes.  Even then, I defer to Lincoln, "When a man who is honestly mistaken hears the truth, he will either quit being mistaken or cease to be honest."

    Immoral actions (or downright crimes) usually involve intent.  Prerequisites for forgiveness and compassion in those instances are sincere confession, contrition, and wherever possible, restitution.  These are what are lacking.  Otherwise, punishments and scorn are the just deserts.


  3. 10 hours ago, yknot said:

    It's not weird. It is sadly a cynical opinion based on experience. For lack of a better word, relationships between paid staff and volunteer or even elected volunteer boards can be incestuous. That's pretty real world. 

    Yes, I have observed the trend of SEs finding people who have drunk the kool-aid and recruiting them to their boards.  (BTW, why would the SE have any influence over who is on the executive board?)

    Typical boards are NOT representative of the people in the community who make up the volunteer corps.  I find their interests and agendas are not aligned with the ideals of Scouting, as their actions routinely demonstrate.

    • Upvote 1
  4. Gents, you are operating under a misguided assumption...

    "The mission of the Boy Scouts of America 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 Law."

    Vision "The Boy Scouts of America will prepare every eligible youth in America to become a responsible, participating citizen and leader who is guided by the Scout Oath and Law."

    Nowhere in the mission or vision statement does it say the professional corps, or national or council boards will subscribe to the values and ideals of Scouting.

    Our assumption is that it would be inherent that all would walk the talk, but my experience over a "career" of 43+ years as a Scout and Scouter says it just isn't so.

    And as this culture comes more and more to light, as it has in the national-level controversies of recent decades, and as it is in this bankruptcy process, BSA membership will dwindle.

    Character matters.


    • Upvote 1
  5. 18 minutes ago, PaleRider said:

    They keep a damn book with names and hid them.And still today are fighting to keep them all from being released.Here is my bigger paint brush for 40 damn years my life has been pure hell because those suit and ties for over 100 years did nothing but protect them and the abusers not us.Now unless you were abused don't preach to me.You haven't a damn clue as to how I'm feeling.Sobyou can take up for these clowns all you want to.BUT THE FACT IS THEY FAILED US.THEY PREACHED TO US WHAT A BOY SCOUT REPRESENTS WHILE THEY DID NOTHING TO PROTECT US. NO NEED FOR YOU TO REPLY BECAUSE IM DONE WITH THIS CONVERSATION.AND IF I RUFFLED YALLS FEATHERS TO BAD CAUSE EVERYTHING IVE SAID IS THE TRUTH.

    No ruffled feathers here, brother.

    I am heartened by your righteous indignation and want you to stay and keep giving us that perspective. 

    • Sad 1
  6. 14 minutes ago, Eagle94-A1 said:

    Scouting lost phenomenal folks due to the changes in the age policy, All of them feel that BSA disrespected them. Which is really sad because in my experience the 18-20 year olds are better Scouters than the recently crossed over adults because A. they have the knowledge, skills, and abilities already, despite the lack of official training, and B. they were the peers and role models of the Scouts, and they already have the respect of them. In one case the person who aged out would be unable to follow YP policies outside of Scouting since he is still in HS and several of his classmates are involved in Scouting. Since he is not registered, he can contact the Scout anytime needed now.


    I'd really like to see any empirical data that shows the 18-20 y.o. is more of a danger to Scouts.

    Without that, I believe the policy should say just one adult over 25 years (yes, 25 years old) to run an outing, with another adult over 18.

  7. 5 minutes ago, 69RoadRunner said:

    I got an email that we weren't rechartered because we didn't pay. I had our treasurer send proof that they deposited our check.

    Now I noticed that one of our scouts and his mom are no longer showing up in Scoutbook. He has the same first and last name as another scout in our troop who aged out but is now a registered adult with our troop. We had problems with his account in the past because of it.

    My son just aged out but registered as an adult. He now appears twice in Scoutbook both as a scout, not adult.

    Scouts who left our troop and did not re-register still appear in Scoutbook.

    Calling this a mess is really an insult to messes.

    Our Charter Org is our homeowners association and not to blame here at all.

    Frustrating.  When we cannot get basic administrative tasks dealing with membership right, our confidence in the integrity of all other processes erodes.

    Best of luck as you wade through the mess.

    Have you spoken directly with your registrar?

  8. Yeah, this is a judgement call...there is no definitive answer.  Put it back on the Scout...ask him if he really considers this to have met the spirit of "mountain biking" rather that some legalistic definition (e.g., "I rode a mountain bike, so it must be "mountain biking")

    IMO, paved is definitely out for "mountain biking", and there are some well-groomed crushed stone trails in our area (rails-to-trails), that I would also not count as mountain biking.

    We do have a long, somewhat flat dirt trail with lots of mud, and a few ups and downs fortified with gravel to prevent erosion, and I have seen a number of Scouts fall in the thick mud and take spills coming down hills and trying to make a turn in gravel.  They learn 😛

    The requirements for that option speak of dealing with obstacles and proper technique for mountain biking over rocks, roots, and gravel...things you should not do with a road bike 😛

  9. 3 hours ago, mrjohns2 said:

    Key 3’s can pull this from my.scouting for those in their unit. 

    Awesome!  I did not know you could do this!  Thanks!

    In my.scouting (if you are Key 3 or a delegate) under the Roster, select the individual, then select Print, and from the pull down menu select Unit Advancement Details Report.  This will generate a report which looks like a complete record.  Here's a sample of mine....dates removed to protect identity 😜

      Adult Award Veteran Award - 20 Years
      Adult Award DoD-USM Outstanding Volunteer Svc.
      Training Awards C51: Den Leader Training Award
      Training Awards C54: Cub Scouter Training Award
      Training Awards S41: Boy Scout Leader's Training Aw
      Adult Award Veteran Award - 20 Years
      Youth Award Historic Trails Award
      Training Awards D61: District Comm Scouter Tng Awd
      Adult Award Veteran Award - 30 Years
      Adult Award Unit Leader Award of Merit - SM
      Training Awards S40: Scoutmaster's Key
    • Upvote 1
  10. 50 minutes ago, NJScout1980 said:

    I have been reading this blog for months and finally decided to express how I feel about this plan.  I have always and continue to believe there are thousands of fraudulent sexual abuse claims filed in this bankruptcy.  I also believe there are thousand of legitimate abuse claims that have not been filed.  I am frankly disgusted by the lawyers of the Coalition and more specifically those of AIS.  The coalition and the “supposed non organization” (AIS) actively recruited “victims” without, in my opinion, any legitimate vetting.  My attorneys required a vast amount of evidence, which I provided, to ensure my claim was vetted and valid. 

    I was sexually assaulted by a volunteer scouter in New York, which fortunately for me is an open state.  I waited years and years for NY to finally open the SOL so I could seek justice.  I waited and accepted the fact I would not be able to seek justice unless NY acted and I am happy they finally did.  
    While I voted REJECT on the original plan, I am now voting to ACCEPT.  My reasoning is simple:  

    1.  A tougher level of proof is required and many, if not most, of the fraudulent claims will be paid out at a lower rate.  

    2. People from closed states will receive some form of justice and payment even though, sadly in all legal reality, are entitled to nothing 

    3. Someone like me who has indisputable and clear evidence will be able to have his case heard before a judge and receive full compensation.  Yes the $20,000 fee is ridiculous, but for some of us it is worth the risk.   

    I agree survivor v. survivor may not be appropriate, but unfortunately it is a reality.   Laws sometimes hurt certain groups of people and those from open states should not be punished because others are from states with closed-minded ignorant and uncaring legislatures.   This plan, while imperfect, is the best possible solution as it benefits most, maybe not in a perfect way, but certainly in some way.  

    The last point I wish to make deals with Chapter 7 bankruptcy.  This choice is completely ignorant and self serving to a certain lawyer and a group of his minions who, in my opinion, do not represent the beliefs and attitudes of most survivors.  Under no circumstances do I believe scouting should cease to exist.  Scouting had a tremendous positive influence on my life.  Aside from the sexual abuse, I was happy with my experience and so proud to have achieved the rank of Eagle.  My scoutmaster, who did not sexually abuse me, was a stern and strict leader who instilled in me the idea of being responsible for my decisions and how to be a good leader.  His teachings instilled in me values that make me the man I am today and I have nothing but fond memories of him.  Don’t throw out the baby with the bath water.  Yes scouting has ruined many, but that does not mean the entire organization is rotten.  The TCC’s push for better YP is a step in the right direction. 

    I am sorry for the length of this post but I needed to express my opinion. Agree or disagree is ok, criticism of me is ok; my scoutmaster taught me to always stand up for what I believe to be fair and just, and accept the criticism for what comes with it.  That is an important value scouting taught me.  It is a main reason why I could NEVER support the end of scouting as it is today.  It is the reason I now support this plan.  

    @NJScout1980, welcome!

    Thanks for your input, and I wish you the best in your endeavors.  Agree with all you have said except one sentiment... baby and bathwater...

    The baby is Scouting.

    The bathwater is the BSA.

    We could throw out the bathwater and keep the baby.  I do not advocate fully this yet, but do not see progress on the "reorganization" front...so await the final outcome of Chapter 11.  I see no problem with Chapter 7. 

    We can find our way without the BSA ;)

  11. On 2/5/2022 at 9:43 PM, fred8033 said:

    Hand it to the council and buy the award. 

    If you wish to have this "on your record", then you will need to go thru the paperwork process.

    Did you know you each adult has an official awards record as well?  If you are on good terms with your registrar, you should ask for your own record. 

    Please be mindful of your registrar's time; I do not recommend you ask for this frivolously.

    • Upvote 1
  12. 1 hour ago, SiouxRanger said:

    BINGO. Where is the meaningful change? Like the Wizard of Oz, "Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain."

    I am sick of the secrecy.

    Us volunteers FUND National and the Local Councils, all not-for-profits, yet all the financials are hidden.

    Nothing is GAAP. At least that which does see the light of day.

    Time for a change.

    I believe the only way for that to occur would be to remove the money.

    Just about everything I have seen that is "wrong" with the organization stems from the consolidation, the pursuit, or the protection of money.

    Was BP on to something when he essentially asked for that?

    To my Brother Scouters and Guides:

    Cecil Rhodes said at the end of his life (and I, in my turn, feel the truth of it), "So much to do and so little time to do it." No one can hope to see the consummation, as well as the start, of a big venture within the short span of one life-time.

    I have had an extraordinary experience in seeing the development of Scouting from its beginning up to its present stage. But there is a vast job before it. The Movement is only now getting into its stride. (When I speak of Scouting I include in it Guiding also.) The one part which I can claim as mine towards promoting the Movement is that I have been lucky enough to find you men and women to form a group of the right stamp who can be relied upon to carry it on to its goal. You will do well to keep your eyes open, in your turn, for worthy successors to who you can, with confidence, hand on the torch. Don't let it become a salaried organization: keep it a voluntary movement of patriotic service.

    The Movement has already, in the comparatively short period of its existence, established itself onto a wide and so strong a footing as to show most encouraging promise of what may be possible to it in the coming years. Its aim is to produce healthy, happy, helpful citizens, of both sexes, to eradicate the prevailing narrow self-interest; personal, political, sectarian and national, and to substitute for it a broader spirit of self-sacrifice and service in the cause of humanity; and thus to develop mutual goodwill and cooperation not only within our own country but abroad, between all countries. Experience shows that this consummation is no idle or fantastic dream, but is a practicable possibility - if we work for it; and it means, when attained, peace, prosperity and happiness for all. The "encouraging promise" lies in the fact that the hundreds of thousands of boys and girls who are learning our ideals today will be the fathers and mothers of millions in the near future, in whom they will in turn inculcate the same ideals - provided that these are really and unmistakably impressed upon them by the leaders of today.

    Therefore you, who are Scouters and Guiders, are not only doing a great work for your neighbor's children, but are also helping in practical fashion to bring to pass God's Kingdom of peace and goodwill upon earth. So, from my heart, I wish you God-speed in your effort.



  13. 56 minutes ago, ThenNow said:

    Narrow with plantar fasciitis supports. New balance have been my shoe for decades. They stopped making my number or changed it a lot. I’ll see what I can find.

    I am in a very hilly neighborhood with easy to challenging natural trails nearby. We walked 3 a day in the neighborhood until the colder weather deterred my wife. I used to do the park with my (then living) dogs several times a month. That was a good bit ago. 5 flat for sure. Have to build back in our neighborhood. Good advice, all. I am very competitive and tend to push. With the trauma issues, I’ve battled eating disorders and exercise addiction back in 2010-2012. Wound up with a heart attack. Low carb, low fat and 600+ calorie per day burn on cardio alone. I’m past that now after residential treatment.


    So, you're a late fall or early winter chicken? 😁😁😁

  14. 20 minutes ago, ThenNow said:

    I know this is like asking for opinions on the best BBQ and other highly contested subjects, but recommendations for light hikers? I wore Merrills for a while then the last and sizing got off (and my feet bonier) and they became uncomfortable. I’ve given away the last two pair I’ve had. My Gortex boots are well-preserved Montrails and I still like them a lot.

    Your footwear is critically important. Do you currently need arch supports, or have a wide foot?  I do, and use New Balance trail running shoes, as they accommodate my orthopedics.

    Next...crawl, walk, hike, backpack...I'm sure you are past the crawling.  Do you walk a lot?  If not, start there.  Even on a treadmill, if necessary.  Can you walk five miles at a good pace (you have to define this for yourself) with no problems?  If yes, you are ready to do longer days hike.  

    Carry Scout Essentials only, hit a local urban trail, and shoot for 10 miles.  Recuperate, evaluate your footwear and gear, and do it again.  And again.

    Then try a 15er in a day.

    Do those, and then we can talk backpacking and lightweight gear.

    Work up to it please.  You ain't a spring chicken anymore 🤪🤪🤪

    • Thanks 1
  15. 1 hour ago, GiraffeCamp said:

    I'm totally following. What about keeping your body heat trapped inside the bag?

    I think this works even better to trap heat.  With the bag unzipped and laid on top, it is twice as wide.  Heat wants to go up, so as long as you don't stick your extremeties out from under, it works well...for me at least.  That is sleeping on the ground and not on a cot, though. Give it a try and let us know...

    • Thanks 1
  16. 59 minutes ago, MattR said:

    Good question! Sleeping bags are worthless where you smash them down. That and the fact that the ground is cold means you'll freeze if you don't have insulation directly under you. So, if you're on an uninsulated blowup mattress you will have very miserable night. Same goes for a cot. You need insulation underneath.

    Not sure you'll need it but I put an army surplus wool blanket on the floor of my tent.

    Also, I wear a hat to bed. If it gets real cold I make sure my neck is covered as well but that's just me. The sleeping bags that tie up close around my face don't quite work. I move around too much.

    I sleep pretty splayed out, and I roll and move a lot.  If I zip up my sleeping bag, it is miserable.  I put down two insulated pads, and then lay a fleece blanket over the top of those.  The sleeping bag lays opened up, on top.  The more loft you can keep in your bag, the warmer it will be.  Rolling over in a sleeping bag flattens out the loft.  Stretching out in a sleeping bag also stretches your sleeping bag and kills the loft.  Basically, an open sleeping bag is like a big comforter.

    • Thanks 1
  17. Ready for the next round of tips?

    10.  Coolers become warmers:  If temps are below freezing, do not put ice in your coolers to keep food fresh.  Put in full water bottles with water at around 40F in to keep food from freezing overnight.  Limit opening the "warmers" and close the lids quickly.  We use old 1-liter soft drink bottles.  Each patrol gets two.  They work out nicely.  Wash them out at home, and put in potable water.  (Great way to re-use, versus trashing items or wasting money on bags of ice.)  In a pinch, if water bottles or jugs are frozen, you can use the water from your "warmers" for cooking.

    11.  Below about 20F (your taste may vary), do not bother building a fire.  Insulation works both ways :)  I have seen Scouts try to sidle up too close to a fire with all their gear on...they cannot feel the heat, and they wind up burning clothing.  If you have to have a fire, any time you approach, open up all your layers so you can feel where a safe distance is.  But, when you open those layers, you have just lost all that precious heat you just worked so hard to produce.  Whenever we build a fire, it is usually to dry out wet clothing.

    12.  Shift your menus to more fats, starches, and sugars.  Calorie needs almost double.  Have some sugary things on hand for a quick warm up.  My personal favorite is honey.  If I'm feeling a bit cold, I do 20 jumping jacks (don't work up to a sweat!) and then down a tablespoon of honey.  Fats and sugars for breakfast, and have a big starchy meal for dinner...think beef stew with potatoes, rice or noodles, and bread.  Then, a Snickers bar (or a delicious Dutch oven treat) and top off your fluids before brushing your teeth for bed.  You have to keep the old furnace stoked!!

    13.  Be extra vigilant about hydration.  Dehydration degrades your body performance, and can hasten the onset of hypothermia.  If you feel thirsty, you are already behind.  Everyone is still perspiring, even at cold temps...and you lose a lot of moisture through breathing in the cold...you must replace that fluid.  Urine frequency and color is a good indicator of your hydration level.  See the chart in First Aid section of your Scout Handbook around page 138. 

    14.  Have a plan for a warm safe haven.  If someone starts to succumb to the cold, what are you going to do?  If you are car camping, a vehicle works well...  you can warm someone up within 20 minutes.  If you are further afield, do you have some shelter you can set up quickly to get out of the wind?  How quickly can you make a hot cider with the backpacking stove?  BTW, if one Scout begins having hypothermia symptoms, chances are some others are pretty close to the same condition.  Be wary... 

    15.  If you have snow on the ground, learn to make deadman anchors.  Your Fieldbook has a brief discussion.  Here is a demo (even though his taut-line is incorrect, and he doesn't show you placement... ;) )  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iKBAVvRVwqY&ab_channel=SurvivalCommonSense  This also works well in the sand when camping on the beach!!  Here's another demo so you can see the principle... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b4lDIDpgmdc&ab_channel=CanvasCamp  If you have no snow on the ground, putting stakes in frozen ground (and then getting them out) is a challenge.


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