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T78Scoutmaster

Eagle Board of Review Question

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I guess I'm a little sensitive to EBOR questions because I was asked a question in my EBOR eons ago that I thought I answered well. When called back in the gentleman who asked the question said I was wrong about my answer and did it in a way that shook me to my core. The board still approved me as Eagle Scout. I've carried the gentleman's answer with me over 30 years later. I realized several years after the EBOR that the gentleman was right, but at the time I was traumatized.

 

Along a corollary theme, what would you say if your boss or someone else in authority asked who you were going to vote for this year? And that it was tied to a promotion or raise? I know it's slightly out of context given that Scouts must understand citizenship and our jobs may not have that requirement.

 

I think our EBOR of the young man handled it well because they did not critique his particular answer; we discussed privately that he had put some thought into his answer. If any adult had critiqued his answer or had the answer sway his decision, then I would have supported the young man in an appeal.

 

Religion, politics, and family are always dangerous topics, but it is refreshing to know the Scouting program is building Scouts who are able to handle tough questions and answer with confidence.

 

Thanks again for all the great responses.

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Yeah, I understand how that would make you sensitive. I had a nearly perfect EBOR...perfect, that is, in the manner it was run - I have no idea if my performance was exemplary but I was evidently good enough to pass.

 

I use my students as a model for these things. If I stand at the beginning of lecture and remind them that tomorrow is election day and urge all the students to participate in the election, I am engaging in public service. If I urge them to vote in any particular manner, I might get fired and rightly so. If I engage them in a discussion of the political issues in my science course, I will be derelict in my duties. The problem comes when there is a political dimension to a scientific issue. That's when the fun begins.

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I just think that there's better questions that could have been asked to assess citizenship. Personally, if I wanted to ask a question along this line, I would ask something to the effect of "How are you deciding who you will vote for in the next election?" This way, the scout could explain his values, his though processes, critical thinking, etc - i.e., the very things that Scouting tries to develop. Also, the scout will not feel compelled to reveal information he might prefer to keep to himself, and the board could have a discussion that focuses more on values, morals and citizenship than on politics. It also requires a lot more thought to answer this question than simply saying "Obama" or "McCain" or "Steven Colbert!" Personally, as an Eagle Scout, I'd be upset if I was asked such as question at my EBOR. I can say now, looking back, my thoughts on politics have changed greatly since that time. However, I'd like to think that my values, and commitment to citizenship have not changed. And isn't that what we're trying to assess?

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Why are we afraid to ask a direct question like "Who would you vote for if you were eligible to vote?" What that man told you, T78Scoutmaster, was out of line but there is nothing wrong with asking a direct question! And yep asking who someone would vote for is directly related to Scouting - citizenship.

 

Ed Mori

1 Peter 4:10

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If asking who the scout was going to vote for is appropriate, then his response "None of your beeswax" is also appropriate. Actually, I think a scolding by the scout to the asking adult about the sanctity of the secret ballot and how it relates to the integrity of the election process would be appropriate.

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Actually, I think a scolding by the scout to the asking adult about the sanctity of the secret ballot and how it relates to the integrity of the election process would be appropriate.

 

LOL!

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Hmm, I have to repeat my post, I dont see a problem asking a scout his stand on a political issue or who he intend to vote for and why. I want to hear his reasons. Now, to my way of thinking, there is no debate or rebuttal to the scouts answer. Question asked, answered and we move on. Its a board of review, not a politcal debate or discussion group. However, if the youth shot back an answer such as Hillary because she is such a babe, I might aquestion whether or not the scout respects the BOR.

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If you want to know how the candidate stands o a political issue then why not just ask them what they think is an important issue to consider when choosing who to vote for? You can easily find out what he feels about issues without requiring him to reveal who he intends to vote for in a secret ballot.

 

Would you condone a group of older scouts calling a younger scout into a roome and asking to know who he intends to vote for in a troop election?

 

The question is rude and coercive.

 

 

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If you want to know how the candidate stands o a political issue then why not just ask them what they think is an important issue to consider when choosing who to vote for? You can easily find out what he feels about issues without requiring him to reveal who he intends to vote for in a secret ballot.

 

Since the Scout isn't 18 yet, he can't vote so he won't be casting his secret ballot therefore not revealing anything secret.

 

Would you condone a group of older scouts calling a younger scout into a roome and asking to know who he intends to vote for in a troop election?

 

Would anyone? No. Then again, that is totally different and a poor analogy.

 

The question is rude and coercive.

 

Rude? How?

 

Coercive? How?

 

Ed Mori

1 Peter 4:10

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Ed, I think in the original scenario the scout was going to turn 18 after the EBOR but before November, therefore able to vote then.

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Ed, If in your annual performance review, your boss asked you who you were going to vote for, would that be appropriate? Would it be rude or coercive?

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Ed, If in your annual performance review, your boss asked you who you were going to vote for, would that be appropriate? Would it be rude or coercive?

 

Gern,

 

Who I vote for has nothing to do with my job. And my annual review is not in anyway shape or form similar to an EBOR. Again, poor analogy. And if I was asked, my answer would be "The candidate who I feel is the best one for the job."

 

The question at an EBOR "Who would you vote for in the upcoming election?" is directly related to citizenship.

 

Are we afraid to ask direct questions at an EBOR? And if so, why?

 

Ed Mori

1 Peter 4:10

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Seeing as how we have had a bunch of "Death Bed" Eagles, it is entirely possible to have an EBOR for a scout who is over 18, at least within 3 months of his 18th birthday. So, it is entirely possible to be speaking to a registered voter when doing an EBOR. And I don't see how asking a scout who he is thinking of voting for is rude and coercive if you ask and listen to the thought process that lead the person to the selection and move on. No, you don't debate or argue the selection, you listen to the reasoning and move on. If you can't ask the question without adding a value judgement, then don't ask the question. I think the question is valid, judging the answer is not. This does bring up a quesiton, some don't want to have a scout's thoughts on reverence brought up because its too personal. And now, who the youth will vote for is too personal. A few people even suggested that the scout should respond by saying, My religious beliefs are my private thoughts and I dont feel comfortable discussing them or words to that effect, and now, we encourage the scout to answer the question of who they will vote for with an answer of 'none of your beeswax or something similar. So, what about other attributes? When you ask a scout what being trustworthy means to them, can they answer none of your beeswax or being trustworthy is part of my personal code of conduct and I dont feel comfortable discussing it with you? What about loyal? Friendly? The reason for questions that cannot be asnwered with a yes or no is to see how the scout reasons and communicates, there are no right or wrong questions that can be asked, well, I guess 2, but thats thats it!

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Actually Ed, I think the analogy of an employee performance review and an EBOR is pretty good. The BOR is a performance review of the scout.

 

Why ask the scout who he's going to vote for if his answer should have no bearing on the decision of the board? Why do you care?

 

Ask him IF he is going to vote. Ask him HOW he will decide who to vote for. Ask him WHY he should vote. But never WHO.

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