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Posts posted by InquisitiveScouter

  1. 19 minutes ago, swilliams said:

    From the article: [quote]The Patriots’ Path Council council did not disclose the purchase price for the Sabattis Adventure Camp. They also did not name the buyer, except to say the purchaser is a neighbor of the camp who has “agreed to permit the council to use the property for at least five more years,” according to the letter from council leaders.[/quote]

    One big problem - going back to 2020 - is that with the Covid restrictions placed on the camp by NY State, they are still not running a full program this summer.  We didn't go last year, and are not going this year, and are pretty broken up about it.  It's nice that the purchasers agreed to let council use the property for five years, but kind of pointless if council can't run a robust program.

    Are any other council properties being successfully leased back?

    We were going to Sabattis this summer... then they cancelled all regular program in our week...

    I think they are only running two weeks now...and it is really "bring your own merit badge counselors"...at least, that is what they told me last October/November.

    They are hosting mostly treks during those weeks.

    We are going to Onteora now...

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  2. 33 minutes ago, yknot said:

    The concept of Outdoor Ethics mean leaving wild lands wild.

    Yes, but part of that wildness was periodic, natural fires to burn away the accumulated fuel.  We have interfered with that, stopped those fires, and let the fuel pile up.

    Good stewardship includes prescribed burns.

  3. 19 hours ago, ThenNow said:

    5. If BSA is dismantled, will scouting cease to exist? By the words of many, many of you Scouters, it's a resounding no. In that case, are kids safer in thousands of independent groups without a high level of institutional oversight, including the rigorous input of BSA CSA survivors? I'm concerned that it would not be. 


    18 hours ago, vol_scouter said:

    Number 5 is a brilliant observation.  My feeling is that Scouting will continue in America.  If no BSA, another organization could emerge but likely there will be many separate scouting programs that will make youth protection less likely to be strictly followed. I would argue that a comprehensive single program is best able to enforce strict youth protection policies.

    I would contend that kids are less safe in either situation, without the constant vigilance of adults who are watching out for them.

    Policies do not equal vigilance...that is part of the thinking that got us here in the first place.

    As a kid who was groomed and abused, I know what the predator looks and acts like.  He is the nicest person in the world.  He cares for your kids.  He is friendly.  He goes out of his way to help them and you.  He is biding his time and waiting for the opportunity.  What I'd really like to know is, how long does he wait before he gives up and moves on to a new target?  And does he stalk several prey at once?

    Here's a good synopsis of the process...


    Look at the first three behaviors...these align somewhat with what a good Scout leader actually does as far as recruiting Scouts, gaining trust of Scouts and parents, and filling needs for adventure, organization, advancement, etc.

    It's where number four comes in that we need vigilance.  Vigilance by parents, leaders, and Scouts.  BSA National doesn't do squat in this area.  They really don't come into the picture until after an abuse has occurred and been reported.  BSA has NO insight into unit programs or what goes on at the unit level.  So, in essence, there are a multitude of separate programs underway right now.

    YPT begins at home.  It should be pervasive in schools.  It should be an attitude and mindset that we all have (all people...not just all Scouters).

    I never, ever, left one of my kids alone with anyone other than a family member.  In some families, even that is a risk...  And I told my kids when they were younger, that they were never to be alone with an adult unless Mom or Dad said it was OK.

    You would not believe how many parents now trust me implicitly with their Scouts.  Parents would be OK with having me pick up and drop off their kids for Scouting events.  They would be fine with dropping them off at my house for merit badges or Scout skills.  But I do not, under any circumstances, allow a situation where I am alone with someone else's kid.  I maintain the vigil on myself, and it surprises me how many parents would willingly put their kids into my hands, and who offer that as a matter of convenience on a routine basis.

    It's like the message just doesn't get through...  In spite of parents having to read and go through YPT stuff with their Scouts.  I sincerely doubt most read it.

    An abuser can easily mimic my behavior and concern for Scouts.

    Watch out for the ones who seek to be alone with a Scout!  To me, that is the key, critical behavior that is the red flag.

    When we go camping, I want as many adults around as possible.  The more eyes, the better.   The more collective training we have, the better.

    We had a saying in the military, when figuring out how to defeat our adversaries...

    You must learn to think like the wolf before you can kill the wolf. 

    Most people will not put themselves into the thought process of the predator.  I did, and I do.  How does someone want to get my Scouts?  Act like me, and then isolate them.

    That will not happen on my watch.

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  4. No trailer works for patrol outings...  two adults, 5 to 8 Scouts...maybe one extra car (a parent) for transpo...

    For Troop outings...nope.

    We have 57 Scouts now (in 7 Patrols) Our average on outings is about 30-35 Scouts.  The average family's vehicle can hold about five passengers, so we need 6 or 7 vehicles just to get the bodies there.  The average family car cannot hold passengers and gear for six people (including the driver, when they are camping.)

    Most families do not own trucks or SUVs in our area...

    Our Troop owns two gear trailers: one large for Troop outings (and storage) (donated long ago), one small for medium sized outings (and storage) (purchased recently with Troop funds).

    We recently changed COs.  The CO does not have space for a shed for troop gear storage, so we purchased the smaller trailer to act as a "mobile shed" of sorts.  The used trailer costed us less than a shed would have.  And now we have the capability to send out medium sized trips of several patrols to different locations.

    Our practice is that all trailers must be single axle, under 3000 lbs, so as not to require brakes on the trailer, inspections (in our state), and vehicles with higher towing capacity and wiring for a trailer brake controller.  The trailers can be towed with most SUVs and just about any truck.  We have at least 10 families that can tow (about 20% of Troop).

    These solutions make sense for our unit, and the program that our Scouts have chosen.  These are the basics for us.


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  5. Neat!

    Yes, these tankers were made primarily to refuel our Cold War bomber fleet.

    At the end of the Cold War, we began using them for contingencies and conflicts like Bosnia, Iraq, Afghanistan, etc.  The tanker fleet is a crown jewel in our national ability to project power around the world.

    The saying is NKAWTG!!  Nobody kicks a## without tanker gas

    • Upvote 1
  6. 2 minutes ago, Eagle1993 said:

    Many members of our Troop went to a National Guard base 128th air refueling wing to tour and earn aviation merit badge (the airplanes were outdoors).  Next weekend, we have a backpacking trip ... only 5 scouts out of 44 signed up.  We have more adults interested than scouts...

    Even if you only have two Scouts, go!!

    And, did you learn anything interesting about the KC-135R??  (I flew them 😝)

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  7. As SM, I saw it as my role to help (NOTE: "help") recruit new ASMs, and then oversee their training and development.  When my self-imposed term limit was coming up, I made a recommendation to the Committee of the top three who I thought would be the best for the Troop.  I reminded the CC it was their job to recruit the new SM, discuss and get "advice and consent" from the committee, and then get COR approval of the change (as they would be the one signing the application). [It depends on the mood of our registrar as to whether we have to fill out a new application or not...check with your registrar...your mileage will vary 😜 ]

    Sadly, none of the three would take the position.  We wound up will a suboptimal volunteer, and it has hurt our unit over the past year.  As things have spiraled downwards (because I say "No" to things that are not my responsibility), everyone sees the decline, and now one of the three will take over at the beginning of summer.



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  8. We camped in a local county park and did rock climbing.  (Our local climbing gym has group rates.)

    Other than climbing for about five hours Saturday afternoon, lights out at 10, and a Scout's Own on Sunday morning, we had no scheduled events.  Just hanging around in hammocks, building fires, cooking meals, etc.  For those Scouts who wished to work on other advancement, older Scouts and adults were available for requirements.

    We were all outdoors, as the weather was absolutely beautiful.  About half of our Scouts slept under the stars...no tents.  (Sorry, but there is no such thing a "camping" in a cabin :) )

    We had to have several attempts at washing dishes, with a review of proper dishwashing outlined in the Scout Handbook...


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  9. 9 hours ago, yknot said:

    I'm sure you know that goes without saying. I'm not sure what your point is there. But it's only in scouts where you are banned or muzzled or labeled fun police for simply reading, knowing, and following the policies and procedures manual, which in BSA's case is G2SS. In any other youth organization it's not a battle to get people to follow it. If you don't follow it, you generally get tossed. BSA has a 100 year history with youth and it still has major disconnects when it comes to keeping them safe is my point. 

    Ahhh...I see what you are saying...I misunderstood what you were aiming at...

    Agreed...I even got skewered by National (and specifically Michael Hohnson) for pointing out inconsistencies and holes in the wording and implementation of policies.

    As I said in another post somewhere, I have never seen another org "shoot the messenger" as much as BSA.

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  10. 2 minutes ago, yknot said:


    This is where I am stuck. If we know gross buffoonery and safety issues are STILL occurring after being sued into bankrutpcy, why are we trying so hard to save this organization? Can it be saved? A small part of me thinks it's possible, and that's why I'm still here, but why should any volunteer have to fight so hard to keep kids safe in a 100 year old youth organization? 

    If BSA goes away, we can still do Scouting.  And you should always be fighting hard to keep kids safe...no matter the organization or its age.

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  11. 5 minutes ago, jcousino said:


    Got to be careful

    I got told that i use to much of the councils time having to deals with my  safety concerns  and youth management issues and i have been banded  from any activities outside of my unit.






    I am in the same boat...lol

    But I still file incident reports whenever any of our youth attend district/council events, and there is gross buffoonery going on...

    (OA and NYLT)

  12. 7 minutes ago, yknot said:

    Think about what scouters do with other peoples' children and where they do it with them. It doesn't take much to prove willful negligence on the part of a scouter or a CO in the event a child is injured on an outing. Weather is a big one. Scouters who proudly, publicly, and recklessly claim they never cancel a camp out...  

    Agreed.  That is why I am such a jerk about every BSA policy, planning, swim checks, permission slips, medical forms, etc., etc., etc.  There is a fairly high price (in time required) for due diligence.

    Scouts who do not abide by instructions and discipline do not last long in our Troop.  If you do not do as you are told (in matters of health and safety), then I refuse to take you into the woods...

    Firm but fair...

    Due diligence begins before you even depart for the trip.

    So, @yknot have you ever been sued for something Scouting related?

  13. 1 minute ago, yknot said:

    That's partly why I'm no longer a scout leader. As far as forming a board, if it is a board formed of local families, then you are the board. If someone wants to sue, they are not suing a valued community institution with long term stature like a church or service organization, which might give them pause, they are suing a random group of adults. 

    They'd still be suing a non-profit with no assets (except camping gear and a paltry bank account)... officers of those organizations cannot be held liable for things other than what was listed above, which is tantamount to criminal behavior anyway...


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  14. 2 minutes ago, yknot said:

    As I've advised before, anyone can sue you for anything and even if you are proven blameless, you can spend a lot of time dealing with a very stressful situation, having to hire a lawyer, attending hearings, and taking time off from work until it's resolved.

    Agreed...which begs the question, why even be a Scout leader, if this is the case?

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