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DeanRx

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DeanRx last won the day on March 7 2014

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About DeanRx

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    Junior Member

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  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    California
  • Occupation
    Medical Field
  • Interests
    Getting away from the city, golfing, non-pc jokes and second guessing draconian rules made by autocrats who have never spent a day of their professional life actually doing the tasks they sit in judgement of....
  • Biography
    I was born... then I grew up.... now I try to adult, but I don't take it too seriously.... with any luck, I'm about half way done with life... hope the second half is just as interesting as the first half. Wish the second half would take longer than the first :)

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  1. DeanRx

    Have you done the new Youth Protection Training?

    Yes, I really do not understand this change... if a patrol wants to have a patrol meeting at a public park, why the need for ANY adult supervision? Out of uniform, a group of six or so boys meeting up at the park to hang out is normal boy behavior. But wear a scout tee shirt and discuss scout stuff... all of a sudden it requires TWO registered adults to supervise it?
  2. DeanRx

    Have you done the new Youth Protection Training?

    The one thing that would be great is a “skip directly to the test” portion for those of us who have done it EVERY TWO YEARS for over a decade now. I under the need to update it. But much like a lot of BSA training, it’s pretty straight forward and most Changes are cosmetic at best and seem to be new admins peeing on the fire plug (so to speak) so they say they did something new.
  3. DeanRx

    Have you done the new Youth Protection Training?

    Yeah, its greeeeaaat, isn't it...
  4. I think there is a LOT of adults that have a fear of things not going as planned. The patrol method is the definition of things not going as planned. Most of the time, it is barely controlled chaos. When I have to talk with parents because they are upset that there is "free time" scheduled on campouts, we have a problem. If the entire day from sun up to sun down isn't scheduled... then what is being accomplished? and Gasp!, a boy might get into trouble without someplace to be at all times ! I firmly believe this should be required reading before ANY adult it allowed to sign up as a leader in a unit: http://richardlouv.com/books/last-child/
  5. Unfortunately, I have found a couple axioms in my 10+ years as an adult scouter. I have served as a DL, a CM, a CC, a MBC and an ASM since my now 17 year old eagle scout joined as a Tiger at age 6... 1) The WB aloofness abounds in BSA. Either you've done it or you haven't. If you haven't - there are some who will write you off as a leader with any knowledge worth sharing. 2) There are HUGE fiefdoms within most training groups within districts and councils. I have volunteered in the past to help train at the district level for BALOO and IOLS. Mostly first aid and fire building... some geocache and map and compass on the side as I seem to like those things and are relatively knowledgeable in those areas. I no longer do this. Why? Because, once when giving the fire starting / camp stove class for BALOO, a very well meaning guy with a woggle came by and started telling me how I shouldn't discuss liquid gas stoves, etc... because BSA had recently ruled them unsafe for scout use. Same for "hobo" stoves, etc... I asked what I should recommend for use in survival MB type situations? I got told, "Well, I don't know... but we can't teach liquid anymore b/c G2SS". I asked so we should exclude something that the adults and youth MIGHT come across because its no longer allowed? I said, so no knowledge is better than some? Can I tell them "well, these are not approved types of stoves... but some scouts like to try to build them... so if you come across them... here are the warnings / precautions you should take..." I got told in no uncertain terms "nope... can not discuss because they are NOT BSA approved stoves"..... Hmmm, ok? Fast forward 3 more years... I'm getting ready to go with my oldest and his group to Northern Tier. We need at least ONE adult to be Wilderness first Aid trained as well as BLS. I have the Healthcare provider level BLS / ACLS because of my job... Council only offers Wilderness 1st Aid twice a year. I look into getting certified as a Wilderness 1st aid instructor. There are two main resources for this coursework. One is the ARC (Amer Red Cross) - which they want a nice chunk of change (around $500) and I would have to travel from San Diego to the LA area just to take the class. The other is ECSI (Emergency Care and Safety Institute). BOTH are certified with BSA national... I opt for the ECSI course, as I can do it via online webinar and submit supporting documents (like my medical credentials) and viola... I'm a certified training site. I fronted about $300 of cost for the training and ten copies of the field manual (which has the BSA logo right on the front cover of their books) and the training aids to start training folks. Now, I hold a Doctorate of Pharmacy degree. I have been in practice for over 20 years. I am a former Army Officer who has completed the C4 course (Combat Casualty Care Course), I held BLS/ACLS for healthcare provider at the time, and I had previously trained as a flight medic while on active duty in the Army. I figured that was probably some decent qualifications... I called the council office to inquire about getting my course offered via their website. I figured I had the materials to train up 10 adults and other units in my area might have a need to have a trained adult for high adventure outings before the next time the council offered the course. I asked to charge a nominal fee of $75 to cover the field manual, registration with the course company, and misc supplies (bandages / face shields / gloves / etc) needed to teach the class. Well, I got asked to come down to the council office to discuss this training with the council training rep (volunteer position) and the two Wilderness 1st aid trainers (married couple who had been doing the twice a year training since Christ walked the earth). All three are part of the pink scarf crew. I take off work early on a Friday to make the meeting. The three are already in the office discussing me when I walked into the council office. I present my idea for the class, show them the training aids I plan to use, show them a copy of my resume to give them background on my qualifications, I volunteered to demonstrate some of the techniques covered in the class (stabilize a limb, apply traction to correct a dislocation, etc) ... The meeting was a complete waste of everyone's time.. because the decision was already made before I walked in the door. Immediately, I'm met with, "Well, we use the ARC materials, not the ECSI.... we don't like the ECSI stuff". OK? But, both are approved by national, right? The BSA logo is embossed on the front of their field manual? Doesn't matter. "You should have talked to us first." "Maybe if you take our class first and then we can train you up and monitor a couple of the classes you want to teach..." "Why do you want to change $75?" Well, I have costs associated with the training. I'm not making a profit... just covering program costs... council charges more than that for the class.... "Well, that money goes to council." Really? Did council buy the supplies for you to use? "Yes"... so the monies are used to defray program cost? "Well, yes.. but it goes through council".... Ok, then let me run the costs trough council... "No, you aren't using the 'right' program..." I even called national. I wrote them letters. Bottom line. No pro scouter is going to cross up a volunteer trainer that has been with their council forever. I'll offer it to folks who ask about it. Our council has to accept someone's training that I give, because it is approved by BSA national. BUT - council will not promote it as an alternate training site to their council ran training. They will not provide me with an e-mail distribution to solicit other scouters to take the course. So, I have no method to promote it to other scouters. They refused to allow me to set up payment via doubleknot on the councils website to provide payment for the course. Basically, they like to pretend that an alternate training doesn't exist. That only those blessed by the council training rep and this ONE couple can provide the proper Wilderness 1st Aid training for anyone in the council. Bottom line - I failed to ask permission before moving forward with getting certified as a train the trainer site. I failed to genuflect to the proper authorities within council training and get their blessing before moving forward. I was very clear that I was not attempting to step on anyone's toes or take over or usurp their established training. I was only trying to provide additional training opportunities to a council that serves SD and Imperial counties (a very LARGE geographical area), that had historically only offered this specific training a couple times a year. After that - I decided two things... 1) I sure as hell don't need WB and 2) I'll help keep the adults in my unit trained up... but the district and council are on their own. The fiefdoms are real folks... and they detract greatly from brining new blood into the training teams. Dean
  6. DeanRx

    JTE Commissioner Requirements

    Unfortunately, UCs are much like DEs in my 10+ years as a scouter... Hardly ever hear from them. When you do, you can bet its about one of two things: 1) recruitment and more likely 2) Can I do a FOS presentation? They're also good for showing up at your Blue and Gold once a year (in cubbies) and bumming a free meal off the unit the one time a year you see them
  7. DeanRx

    Regulating Fall Risks and Nature

    Sometimes we need to be reminded of perspective. I've often offered up the undisputable fact when someone is arguing for or against the relative risk of a scouting activity... that more than likely the most dangerous thing we do in scouting is riding in a vehicle, for multiple hours at a time, with other non scout drivers on the same roads.... The most dangerous thing we EVER do in scouts (by far) is driving to and from scouting events... and no one thinks twice about it.
  8. They work right up until the phone's battery goes dead. There's a reason the GPS is always secondary to the map / compass / orienteering skills as primary. The primary still works when you have no power or you can't lock onto the satellite for some reason Its all very elementary in the classroom setting, or even on a course in the local park... things get very real when you are 3 days out on Northern Tier in an area with nothing but a bunch of dotted lakes hooked together with little dotted portage trails and the patrol of scouts have a difference of opinion about which portage trail is the correct one to take !
  9. DeanRx

    What do you want the District to do for you?

    1) I echo the thought of rotation of RT nights. I get that for consistency sake the 3rd Thursday of the month works well... unless that is your unit's meeting night... or you work late shift every Thursday, etc... 2) As hard as it might be... go VISIT units !! My largest pet peeve with district folks (both vols, but especially some DE pros)... is the ONLY time you see them all year is when they want to show up at your Blue and Gold or a Troop COH to pitch FOS. If you can get there to ASK volunteers who are already giving both time and money to the organization for MORE money... you can get there to see what the needs are. 3) Be observant. I've had too many well meaning, but often old school DC's show up and try to take over a meeting or espouse to the unit adult leaders how something should or should not be done in the unit. Look, unless it is violation of YPT or G2SS... the unit is THEIRS. Learn how THEY do things, instead of telling them how they should be doing it. You might pick up some tricks you haven't thought of before
  10. Yeah Hawkwin... it is a serious question. From the standpoint that over the past 12 to 18 months (at least), BSA seems to have taken the "boys" for granted. Its ALL BSA4G, ALL the time. Don't think the boys do not notice this. What I mean by asking if they ever cared... does the powers that be in Irving actually care about the scouts? Or is it (and has always been) about how to retain the most members? I ask this because back when they had the LDS pumping their coffers and meeting rooms full (and to a lesser extent the Catholic churches).... then it was OK to exclude gays, it was OK to ask members (both youth and adult) to "go away" if they professed a lack of some type of faith. That was a calculated membership exclusion based predominantly on the views of some of BSA's deepest pockets. The secular views have shifted somewhat, but not that much in the past 5 years, to make the case that BSA somehow just became "enlightened" with regards to their membership standards. The shift in admission policy correlates directly with the loss of support from those "traditionalist" entities. This makes me think that the membership standards have more to do with WHO they can recruit and retain with the blowing winds of popular opinion, than it EVER had to do with any "morally straight" or "reverent" ideals that BSA (at the national level) supposedly supports. Sorry, I don't see it as facetious hyperbole or musing at all. Its a question about the integrity of those who sit in meetings and hand down the "rules" of the program the volunteers are supposed to implement.
  11. "Now tell me why boys should not feel they have lost their Scouting program? I predict BSA will lose more boys than girls gained for a net loss of overall membership. Faced with this reality, they'll change to program to make it even more girl-friendly. Boys are the failing segment of our society right now, and nobody cares - nobody. " The crux of the argument to me is in this sentence... I don't think ANYONE believes this is not a great opportunity for female youth. But, did anyone stop to ask IF it was in the best interest of the male youth? Yes, males need to learn how to interact with females... I don't discount this. However, they get a heaping helping of this already at school, at church youth group, at sports, at any other youth activity ever. BSA was the last place that boys could interact with just boys. And yes, boys need to be boys - with the boys... Not to be misogynistic, not to be chauvinistic, not to bash on feminists...not to tell penis jokes and make fun of the opposite sex... but to be BOYS. Anyone who doesn't understand that the dynamic is changed when you go Co-ed is fooling themselves. Do some people complain too much on these boards? Maybe. But its one of the FEW places a dissenting opinion can be stated. You try to even breach the subject on any of the boards that National has their hand in... the content is removed immediately. You try to contact national with ANY expectation of a response... you're pissing in the wind (I've tried multiple times). They've gone incommunicato... sans their talking point briefs handed down from on high to the paid scouters at council and their PR campaign. John-KC = while I respect your sentiment that this thread should be in I&P... that shows the exact distain for "conditional scouters" that is being projected from national !! How is the largest membership shift in BSA history NOT a PROGRAM issue? I understand national's need to promote BSA4G... but the saturation point is salt in the wound to those who disagree with the move in the first place. Most of the information put out doesn't give clear guidance on how to implement either... Its just Ra, ra, ra... this is going to be GREAT !! As for what the youth want? Since when does a 11-17 year old know? You don't think this younger generation is plugged into (probably even more so than us old farts) the idea that hell hath no fury like a pissed off feminist? They know better than to try and cross something that would get them perceived to be non-PC. Heck, in most their schools... even voicing such an opinion, no matter how polite, would get them expelled. Its been that way for them since Kindergarden !! You want proof that its not a popular idea? Well, since national won't make their "studies" public (of which I was never once asked to participate... despite being a 10+ year scouter and holding leadership in both a Cub unit and Troop - one of which was a key 3).... Let's look at data we DO have. What do the FOS donations look like this year? When people are not listened to or given a voice... they vote in one of two ways.... with their feet (which may or may not be happening - remains to be seen) OR with their pocketbook (that one is pretty dang obvious in the past 12 months). I agree that most will surround themselves with like minded folks and just repeat in their own echo chamber what they already hold to be the axiom to the question at hand. So, I question the following: 1) Its good for girls... will it be in the best interest of boys? Does BSA even CARE about the second part of the question anymore? Did they EVER care? 2) Of the people who are PRO BSA4G in theory.... how many actually have female youth that will be signing up? How many will be adult leaders in female units? The news media and celebrity endorsements are nice... but they have an opinion based on what is "fair" and how they want their world view reflected in the institutions of our country. Very few (if any) actually have daughters that will sign up. 3) How many boys are gunning Eagle right now in an attempt to bolt? Once the LDS dust settles, what will the net loss / gain in membership be? Once those cute little gals in cubbies cross over from co-ed cub units into Troops after Web II, how many of them (or their parents) do you think are going to be OK with "separate, but equal" troops? Not many, I would venture to guess. Full integrated co-ed troops will be the norm within 5 years. I'm not sure this wasn't the intent of national all along. So yes, a LOT of long time scouters are dismayed, some a outright pissed off. Because, it was supposed to be ABOUT THE BOYS. Can we say that is true anymore? If it is not, then BSA has already morphed into something it has never been, nor was intended to be. Whether the phoenix rises from the ash of the old BSA to become the premium outdoor / youth led program for all youth remains to be seen. I am seriously concerned for the wellbeing of the organization (whatever form it takes in the next decade). Me voicing my concerns about that does NOT make me a conditional scouter or unscoutlike in the least.
  12. I think there are a few issues at play that might not be considered in the research article. First, the internet provides two things that were lacking in previous generations 1) anonymity - youth can go on chat boards and social media and ask / inquire / experiment with very fluid gender dynamics without much repercussion. Often, this can be done in an online culture that is very open to these ideas and is at least neutral towards them if not outright encouraging instead of disapproving. 2) They can find like minded youth, struggling with the same gender identity issues. They find not just a couple, but hundreds or thousands. All of a sudden, you're not such an odd duck. Second, this leads to normalization of the idea. When we were youth, if someone thought they might be a girl trapped in a boys body... they shut the hell up about it. There was no support group to validate the feelings. So, the question is the trend more prevalent? Or is it just more openly accepted now, so those that fall somewhere between 1 and zero feel more comfortable discussing / exploring it? Third, yes - its trendy. I think this plays into it somewhat. I knew of girls in college who were referred to as LUGs (Lesbian Until Graduation). Why do this? Well a few things... They do not have to worry about the pressure of having a boyfriend while pursuing their studies. They can fool around as much as they want (physically) without fear of a birth control failure and an unwanted pregnancy ruining their career plans. Even in the late 1990s, it was empowering for a woman to self identify this way. I know several who hung out with nothing but other gals... dated... hooked up / etc... that have since settled down with a guy and had the kids / family they always wanted. I know some for whom this was a true sexuality and remain in female - female relationships today. So, all this boils down to... is there a higher prevalence? Or just a greater acceptance and thus less taboo about identifying as they are truly feeling? Someone made the tattoo analogy, which I think is a red herring. A tattoo is permanent. You can be trans / gay / bi in high school and college and revert to a traditional hetero lifestyle when you are ready if one wants. Historically, people waited until they were adults and self sufficient to come out to their families as gay or lesbian. Mostly because of the stigma and most don't want to loose support (physically / financial / emotional) if the family takes it the wrong way... so best to be able to support yourself. Again, with the stigma relaxed or nearly non-existent any longer... there is no real detriment to keeping one's true sexuality hidden from friends and family for as many years as most people did in the past.
  13. DeanRx

    Background checks - concerned parent

    I don't have much else to add than what others have stated... but its an excellent question... There are times I wonder if the checks actually get done. If they do, what they actually check? Obviously, and offense that could endanger a minor (child abuse / molestation / DUI / etc)... but as another poster stated, I'm not sure if you write bad checks, that will even come up (depending on what BSA asks about). Then if the record is sealed or expunged... or if the record was plead down to a misdemeanor... or if it was recorded when they were a youth... all reasons it might not show. I also wonder IF BSA actually runs the checks all the time? The reason I question this, in California, it is a legal requirement that a voluntary background checked individual has a write to a copy of any report that gets ran. I've asked for this on a couple occasions for myself at time of recharter or when I've transferred units... I've never received a report. Now, I don't expect anything to pop up... so if the report comes back with no information, maybe that is not reportable... or maybe the check never actually got done? Bottom line - if you have concerns for any reason about the safety of the youth an adult might / will be around... then its best to ask about it to COR and council in confidence and out of an abundance of caution. That being said, unless you have first hand knowledge of the issue (i.e. you work in LE and arrested the dude before...) then I would be very cautious about it. The responsibility to vet the volunteers is on BSA, not the fellow volunteers. We assume everyone else is clean until proven otherwise, not sure I'd suspect someone on heresay alone.
  14. DeanRx

    Eagle Reference Letters

    My older son had one of his letter of recommendation written by his younger brother (who just joined the troop from cub scouts 4 months ago).... detailing how his older brother has mentored him, served as den chief for his wolf den, etc... through the younger lad's entire scout career thus far. Pretty cool that the older boy asked his kid brother to do that. Even more cool that the 11 year old put together a letter of recommendation that was better than a lot I've seen from references when I've done hiring actions for adults applying for jobs.
  15. I hope more units are seeing that. This is the only thing that will keep BSA afloat with the departure of LDS looming... I have since aged out of pack activities with my boys, so I do not have a good feel for how many cubbies are coming from siblings versus new scout families. If the majority are from the later group... this bodes well for the membership health of BSA. It bodes well for the leadership needed to support BSA4G units too.
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