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InquisitiveScouter

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Posts posted by InquisitiveScouter

  1. 6 minutes ago, DuctTape said:

    And quite a few had a youth scouting experience which was completely adult driven and run; they are doing what they know. Quality Control in BSA is non-existent and hasn't existed for decades.

    The only apparatus I know of for this "Quality Control" and some sort of 'standardization' of program and execution would be through a Commissioners' Corps.

    This is one critical area lacking in our council...I think because the primary pool of candidates for Commissioner, those 'graduated' unit leaders, have become jaded by how crappily (is that a word?) our council is run and how our dedicated volunteers are treated with disdain...

    No one wants to join a losing team, especially when they have seen others with equal dedication join that team and just get beat down...

     

    • Upvote 1
  2. 1 minute ago, yknot said:

    It's a great approach but it's counter culture in a lot of units. 

    You got that right!

    But, there is loads of research touting the value of unstructured time as critical for youth development.

    • Upvote 1
  3. 29 minutes ago, yknot said:

    So true. Unfortunately there are a lot of units that have a very advancement focused, regimented culture. If you can't find time for a hike, or a couple of hikes, or for just checking out the stream or some flashlight games, something is wrong. The other thing I hate is when it becomes tailgating in the woods and no one can leave the campsite because food is the entire focus. I don't mind an occaisional camp out dedicated to cooking involved meals, or a signature fun meal or snack, but I also think if you are toting multiple coolers and apparatus into the woods every weekend you are missing out on the woods.

    One thing we have put into the Troop culture for trip planning is to block off 3 or 4 hours of 'unstructured time'  where the Scouts figure out what they want to do 'in the moment'.   All kinds of Scouting breaks out...one set of buddies builds (another) fire,  some hike, some have a rock skipping contest, flag folding, lashing, knife, ax, and saw work, rope work, some grab an older Scout or adult to work on requirements, etc, etc, etc  The only limitation is that you cannot sit around playing on a screen. 

  4. 50 minutes ago, 69RoadRunner said:

    One thing to always remember is that the rules imposed by national are created by people who don't have to live with them and make them work. They are also created by people who, in my opinion, are more focused on the big picture of keeping the organization financially solvent. That second part is definitely necessary, but it can come at the cost of frustrating the VOLUNTEERS who have to make their decisions work.

    I'm sure they will deny it, vigorously, but I don't get the impression that National and Council leadership cares much about the effects their decisions have on us or if we don't like their decisions.

    We haven't done a camporee in years because the scouts said it was the least enjoyable activity. It was the only activity I did because I had to be there, not because I wanted to. I hated being crammed together with other troops, many of whom disregarded quiet hours. Adults next to us started their breakfast at 4:30am. I really had to censor myself when I asked them what they were doing. They said their troop starts early. Fine, if you're by yourselves, go ahead. That was our last camporee.

    And if you've got some very small troop struggling to survive, support their efforts to live. But I also get the impression that national would prefer consolidation of troops into fewer, but bigger troops. Well, you're going to have to dump the dumb (IMHO) charter organization way of operating for that.

    Just my 1 cent. It's really not worth 2 cents.

    Your wisdom is worth much more🙂💪😜

    • Thanks 1
  5. This rule is ludicrous.

    To the point, as an SM, I answer to the Troop Committee Chair and the Chartered Org Rep.

    In the case of multiple units camping together, if all CORs approve, the district or council can't say squat.  This is probably the only lever that National wants the LCs to pull anyway.  If you have CO top-cover, thru your COR, you are good to go.

    So, if you have say an email chain from the three CORs approving the event, you could send that to your DE, informing them of your outing, so they know, for 'legal' purposes only.

    If your COR is not FULLY aware of the scope and program for your outings, then you have failed to 'let your boss know what you are doing'

     

    • Upvote 1
  6. 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.

    Barry

    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
  7. 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.

     

  8. 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
  9. 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
  10. 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
  11. 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.

  12. 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?

  13. 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 😛

  14. 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
  15. 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 ;)

  16. 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
  17. 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.

    Baden-Powell
     

     

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