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David CO

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Posts posted by David CO


  1. 3 minutes ago, Navybone said:

    With schools closing and moving to on-line teaching, and groups gathering sizes being limited, how do we sustain interest in and maintain advancement, where we can, in scouting?  Virtual troop or patrol meetings on platforms like Zoom, trail to first class discussion in a chat room?  Emphasize some merit badges (reading) over others?  Interested in thoughts from the community.    

    I would rather suspend the program for a while than adulterate it.  Scouting is an outdoor program.  We should keep it that way.  


  2. 5 hours ago, ParkMan said:

    But this group arrived at a different decision - and it's been working.  Call it a mistake or accident - but it's working and succeeding.  Yeah - maybe it's not the perfect Scouting structure for how the BSA views the structure working - but I don't see the need to tell them this needs to stop.  Sometimes the need of the unit outweigh the rules and regulations.

    I would tend to agree with you if the OP said outside forces were telling the unit this needs to stop, but this just isn't the case.  It is the unit committee who is telling the scoutmaster this needs to stop.  

    I am much more doubtful about the claims that this is working and succeeding, as I am with the assertion that it has unanimous support from the boys' unit.  The opposition from the unit committee might indicate otherwise.

    In any case, if the scoutmaster and the unit committee are at loggerheads on this issue, I think the COR needs to step in and settle the issue.

    • Upvote 1

  3. On 3/10/2020 at 4:52 PM, atrox79 said:

    Actually, none of the boys wanted to run against her because she is that respected in the Troop (17 and just earned her Star). 

    I wouldn't dismiss the possibility that one or more of the boys actually objected to having a girl run for SPL of the boy's troop.  The current climate of the two units might be such that the boys felt like they could not express their opinions about the election without facing condemnation for being sexist.  Continuing on that thought, it might also be remotely possible that some of the boys expressed these feelings to their parents, who consequently raised these issues at the committee meetings.

    Having some committee members object to the election is a problem.  If it is actually the boys who object to the election, it is a much bigger problem.

     


  4. 22 hours ago, atrox79 said:

     

    I feel like we were doing that, but now the Committee wants to step in and tell me how to run the program.

     

    You should be aware of the fact that both the COR and the IH have the authority to step in and tell you how to run the program.  If the committee knows what they are doing, they will go to the COR, the IH, or both.  Maybe they have already done so.  The committee doesn't need to go to national. This can be handled in unit.

     

    • Upvote 1

  5. 1 hour ago, DuctTape said:

    I think some of this stems from scouters trying to create loopholes by saying "we won't call it a scouting event" simply as a means to avoid the rules when it clearly was a scouting event.

    I think you're right.  It's like calling dodgeball "avoid-a-sphere" and claiming it's a different game.

    I have no doubt that there have been sex offenders who have used scouting to make contact with vulnerable youths, and then arranged to meet them in a less safe (non-scouting) environment.  I don't deny that this has been a problem.  This is a classic strategy for pedophiles.

    As much as we want to prevent predatory relationships forming in scout units, we can't just ignore the fact that many scouts and scouting volunteers have pre-existing relationships (like membership in the Chartered Organization) that they are unwilling to give up in order to participate in scouting.  We need to find a way of recognizing these pre-existing relationships without creating loopholes for negligence or abuse.

     

     

     

     

    • Upvote 1

  6. 52 minutes ago, ParkMan said:

    If Tom & other kids are friends through Scouts - no sleepovers. 

    What if Tom & the other kids were friends before becoming scouts?  What if they have been doing sleepovers since they were toddlers?  Are they now expected to stop doing sleepovers?  

    BSA should make it clear what the rules are before people sign up.  If it means that Tom has to stop having sleepovers with his friends, he should be told this before he joins the unit.  It should be clearly stated on the application.  It should be clearly explained at scout night.  Full disclosure.  No surprises.


  7. 2 hours ago, SSScout said:

    True, no one HAS to follow BSA training guidelines outside of the world of BSA .

    I think that is exactly what we are talking about.  Do scouts and scout leaders have to follow YP in those areas of our lives which many of us would normally consider outside of the world of scouting?  Some good examples were given.  Can scouts invite their friends out to a movie?  Can scouts invite their friends over to their house to play?

    Yes.  As a teacher, I have run into some of the same protection issues at school.  Sometimes they make sense.  Sometimes they go too far.  At one Catholic school I worked at, the principal and pastor were insistent that male teachers not join the local YMCA.  Our students regularly used the YMCA, and the school didn't want the male teachers changing and showering with their male students.  It made no difference to them that the YMCA activities were outside of school.

    One of my principals clearly stated that she preferred to have the teachers live in a different town.  She felt it was best to have the teachers avoid contact with their students outside of work.  She lived 40 minutes away from school.  Said she didn't want to bump into students and parents at the grocery store, and thought it would be best if teachers took the same attitude.  

    Public schools don't have this problem.  The union would tear the administrators to pieces if they tried that sort of stuff on public school teachers.  The teachers are allowed to live a normal life outside of school.

    If scouting rules interfere with your family's ability to have a normal life, it is time to get out of scouting.

     


  8. 14 minutes ago, SSScout said:

    they make sense outside of Scouting too.  

    There is no way I would apply YP outside of scouting.  It doesn't make sense, and it's not practical.  I think most people would quit scouting if it meant they had to follow YP in their everyday lives.  


  9. On 3/2/2020 at 3:32 PM, ParkMan said:

     Further, if one pack is too progressive for your liking, join the more conservative one down the street.

    That might work at the unit level, but a conservative parent doesn't get a choice between a conservative or liberal council.  

    • Upvote 1

  10. 5 hours ago, RememberSchiff said:

     

    Together, the camps cost about $375,000 each year to operate. That cost was determined to be too high, while offering experiences Girl Scouts could get elsewhere in the area, CEO Loretta Graham said.

     

    Let me guess.  Is her salary about $375,000 each year?  I might also guess it hasn't been determined that her salary is too high.  It would appear that Boy Scouting and Girls Scouting do have some things in common after all.


  11. 20 minutes ago, walk in the woods said:

    The post-modernists that run our Universities and public schools believe that any organization like the BSA is a remnant of the patriarchal hierarchy oppression machine.  There is no good that can be done in service to the hierarchy and therefore the organization  must be destroyed to free society.  BSA is a paragon of toxic masculinity.

    Toxic masculinity? :confused:  If only that were true.  Most kids today think the boy scouts are a bunch of wimps.  


  12. 6 hours ago, dkurtenbach said:

    Either the program isn't that great after all, or the stewards and guides of the program over the years broke it.  

    Both.

    Scouting has always been a game with a purpose.  It's a good game.  It's a good purpose.  But scouting has never been this all-important, world changing movement that many die-hard scouters keep imagining.  The stewards and guides of the program broke it by giving it this inflated sense of greatness.  They encouraged adults to treat scouting like some sort of religious cult.  It is not at all surprising that child sexual abuse (and a cover up) arose out of this mentality.  Sexual abuse often occurs in cults, or cult like organizations.

    Many people still fail to understand that this cult-like attitude is what created the problem.  Their cult-like devotion to scouting is what perpetuates the problem.  They see themselves as the solution, but they are actually the problem.

     


  13. 7 hours ago, qwazse said:

    I agree with a letter signed by the IH informing the council that the scouter's resignation was accepted, and he is no longer on the unit's roster.

    Copy the SE, COR, CC, and unit leader.

    Then, it doesn't matter what council does our does not do. He's not on your roster, even if his name appears on a printout somewhere.

    I agree.  


  14. 1 hour ago, ParkMan said:

    I think we have to distinguish between an advertising campaign and a PR campaign.  An advertising campaign is a bunch of commercials designed to sell Scouting.  A PR campaign could be a proactive effort to get out there into the media and talk about what they are trying to do.  They could get spots on news talk shows, on the morning TV programs, etc.  

    If the news is reporting it, now's the time to get out there and share our vision.  I've said this before - the BSA ought to go out and hire a really good PR person to serve as spokesperson for the organization.

    Isn't that what we want a chief scout executive to do?  


  15. 34 minutes ago, Pale Horse said:

    And how is this hypothetical scenario different than what's currently being done by the media?  

    There has naturally been a lot of stories in the press about the BSA bankruptcy.  This is to be expected.  The press would be remiss if they didn't report on it.  This is real news.

    I will admit that I don't watch much late night TV, but the best/worst of the parody sketches usually get repeated in the daytime press.  I haven't seen any parody sketches arising from the BSA bankruptcy.  The so-called comedy shows seem to be laying off of scouting (for now).  This could change.

    A PR campaign would almost certainly trigger a response from the entertainment media.  BSA cannot saturate the media sufficiently to overwhelm negative press.  First of all, they don't have that much money.  Even if they did, the bankruptcy court wouldn't allow BSA to spend the money that way.  A PR campaign would be a losing battle, and would just make things worst.

     

     


  16. Advertising would invite parody.  If BSA put out a commercial, the entertainment media would immediately come up with parody sketches about scouting.  Many of them would be certain to include allusions to sexual abuse.  The so-called comedy shows are very clever about this.  They could take any positive message that BSA PR people might come up with and make it look sinister.

    If the scout uniform is used in the commercials, fair use rules might allow them to be used in the parody.  The more visible the PR campaign, the more vicious the parody.  If BSA bought commercial time during the super bowl, for example, the resulting parody would be merciless.  Do we really want that?  


  17. 5 hours ago, Cburkhardt said:

     

    National withdraw the charters of the four councils, took direct control of properties and started from scratch with new staff and volunteer officers reporting directly to National.  During that time, principal decisions to implement the combination were made, including staff changes, volunteer restructuring and property sales.  

     

    Maybe this should not be used as an example, during the bankruptcy proceedings, to demonstrate how councils are separate and independent entities.

     

    • Upvote 2

  18. 3 hours ago, MattR said:

     Pick an outside entity with no skin in the game and have them do a 360 review. Fiscal health, endowments, donors, usage, membership, camps and history of all that. Talk to council staff and volunteers, district staffs and units. Ask start, stop, continue questions about processes and camp, and hire, fire, encourage questions about people. The big question is whether each council is delivering a quality program and has a bright future. If a small council is doing that then don't muck with it. If a large council is just barely making ends meet then merging it with a failing council likely won't help. There is always a trade off between centralized, large control and distributed, small control, so don't assume bigger is better.

    This sounds like a government solution.  When in doubt, form a new committee.  I don't think we need a new committee, or any other new entity.  Just ask the Chartered Organization Representatives.  This could be done by mandating a one-time vote of confidence/no confidence in every council.  Only the COR's vote.  If they vote no confidence, everybody at council is fired.  Then let the COR's form a new council.  If they want to merge with another council... fine.  If they want to divide up into smaller councils... fine.  Let them decide.   No interference from national.  

    Once the new councils are settled, have them choose delegates to a sort of constitutional convention.  This time, we have a vote of confidence/no confidence for national.  If they vote no confidence, everyone at national is fired.  Have the delegates form a new BSA.

    Could BSA leaders survive a vote of no confidence?  I doubt it.  

    • Thanks 1

  19. 14 hours ago, yknot said:

    In trying to visualize a more decentralized future for scouting, one of the things that keeps stopping me is liability insurance.  

    I don't know why.  Many of us have been saying for years that the BSA insurance coverage was probably insufficient to adequately protect us.  We recommended buying your own insurance policy.  I certainly did.  My Chartered Organization did as well.  

    Insurance companies still sell insurance.  I would suggest that scout leaders contact a good insurance broker.  He/she will be able to help determine the amount and type of insurance needed.  Much better than asking for expert advice over the internet.

    • Upvote 2
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