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JoeBob

WHY the Uniform Pants?

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Reading your thoughts Beavah and I conclude you are correct, lets dump the uniform altogether and be done with it

 

Hmmm... I reckon yeh didn't read my thoughts very well, eh? I wasn't suggestin' ditching Uniform Method at all. Just usin' it with more wisdom.

 

But the ODLR legacy? Yah, well, I guess I wouldn't mind if we dumped that. ;)

 

Beavah

 

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Well, I guess SR540Beaver said it a hell of alot better than I could, but that's what I meant:

 

It doesn't matter who you are or what you (r dad) make(s) or where you live. It doesn't matter if you shop at Macy's or Bargin Barn.

 

No matter what goes on elsewhere, when you are scouting, you are equal and on the same ground.

 

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"No matter what goes on elsewhere, when you are scouting, you are equal and on the same ground."

 

Scoutfish, that's a statement we can all agree on.

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The uniform puts you all on the same plane, makes you equal, equal parts of an organization you all choose to participate in.

 

That said, I'm okay with schluffing it a bit. I get tense around the uniform Nazis and my motto is "less is more."

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re: Girl Scouts and vest

 

There's a part of me that likes what the Europeans/world scouts seem to do: just wear a neckerchief.

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Those of our boys who are 14 or older are part of a Venturing crew whose uniform is the brown Scout shirt with jean pants. Presto, no longer are they in "half/pseudo" uniform, they are now in full uniform. The younger boys are still generally in "half" uniform. :p

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Our boys seem to like the scout pants just fine. In fact, most would prefer the Scout Pants (or shorts) with a Troop t-shirt to the uniform shirt with jeans. I like the Scout pants, if they were priced a bit lower or were American made, I'd have no problems with them.

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Well, these five pages capture every argument for and against that I've heard about the uniform and its various parts over the last twenty years or so. Personally, I think that whatever stated purposes (practical, symbolic, or psychological) that the Scout uniform may have served in the past have for the most part fallen away, and what remains is the Scout uniform as a marketing tool, both externally and internally.

 

Externally, BSA wants the public to be able to identify Scouts, triggering at least a brief recollection of the other positive aspects of Scouting's "brand" -- good character, outdoorsmanship, helpfulness, and emergency preparedness being the major ones. The pants help with this aspect, because they make Scouts look more uniform, and it is easier to sell an organization whose members look good.

 

Internally, rank badges, event patches, position patches, Quality Unit/Journey to Excellence patches, etc. all represent achievements and desirable experiences. Wearing those badges and patches -- on the uniform, of course -- markets those achievements and experiences to other Scouts and Scouters, causing those Scouts and Scouters to want those things, and to get those things by staying in the program and using the program more and more. The pants are not much help with this.

 

Dan Kurtenbach

Fairfax, VA

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I know this makes me a member of the uniform police, but here goes:

 

Bart, the Venturing Crew cannot make the Boy Scout shirt and Jeans its uniform. They can cone with anything they want to be the Crew uniform with the exception of recognized BSA uniforms. Then its the Venturing Uniform completely. We had a few EMO girls in the Crew that wanted to wear Cub scout unforms (Very EMO, or it was) and say it was the crew uniform.

 

Would I jump up and down and scream foul? Or even J'accuse if I saw youth dressed like that? Never, I would just be happy that a Crew was out doing something

 

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For the life of me, I don't know why people don't like the uniform pants. They are cheaper than a pair of Levi's. For at least 15 years a pair of baggy cargo pants have been in most guys closets. In my opinion jeans look redonkulus with a boy scout shirt. If someone can't afford both the pants and shirt, go to old navy and get a pair of green cargos for 14 bucks on clearance. Just be prepared to replace them every 6 months or so. . I don't want cops in flower print brumuda shorts and I don't want scouters in jeans. Just my opinion.

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I have to admit I love my scout pants so much that I wear them out of uniform...zip offs and all. And with the exception of a bad estimate on my youngest son's leg length they seem pretty tough.

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The BSA is a uniformed organization for a reason. It builds unity among the boys, removes perceived class structure, and is a statement to any onlookers that they are organized and not rag tag. I knew coming in that the uniform was to be worn and I am proud to wear the entire uniform.

 

I have a pair of the cargo pants with the zip off legs and they have served me very well for two years now. No problems, no complaints.

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Yah, so I was at an EBOR last night and I asked about Federalist's statement. I always like bringin' this kind of question to EBORs, so it was handy!

 

The lad was quite a quick-witted fellow.

 

He said something like "Yes, it builds unity. We are unified in how much we dislike the uniform. Yep, it removes class structure, because everybody classifies us as dorks. We do it because all the adults are so into dressing up to impress others. It's just something we do because we like Mr. Scoutmaster and we like scouting. It's not something that we really identify with, though, the way the older adults seem to. Maybe it was different back when they were little. For us, you could do away with it tomorrow and nobody would object."

 

The lad, of course, was more eloquent and pithy than I am in tryin' to remember. ;)

 

Beavah

(This message has been edited by Beavah)

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