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Just Asking

Singing for forgotten items

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I'm not sure what is the source for the 'Ed vs. world' thing, but if you set emotion aside, I think Ed has a legitimate question. Andrewcanoe gave an example of a boy who quietly limits his own potential in order to avoid what he perceives as an undesirable situation. He could be an expert camper, be elected, and deserve recognition, and yet he would not get the honor because of his perception of one of the requirements. Remember, it is his perception as the recipient of the treatment, not the perception or intentions of the rest of us, that counts.

I think it is OK to disagree on this. But a constructive dialogue would be far better than spitting venom at each other.

 

Acco40, "Oh I wish I was an Oscar Mayer weiner...."

or

"Little girls have pretty curls, but I like Oreos..."

try to get those out of your head!

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Is singing for lost items hazing? Most likely. But in doing it, the youth did learn some responsibility. And there was some discipline. Now, there is not any real consequence for actions. Also a lack of responsibility.

 

And making boys sing is the best way you can think of to teach them discipline and responsibility?!?

 

That's one of the problems I have with this stuff. It's like quack medicines. It's not that the snake oil will kill you, but that while you're taking the snake oil you're not getting the real medical treatment that could save your life.

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In the given example I can't say for certain what the boy feels about the ordeal (the source of his discomfort) but it is clear that something about it bothers him. For want of a better term to apply to it, to me the answer could be 'YES', at least in the boy's view. Perhaps andrewcanoe can provide more detail.

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Oh for Pete's sake answer the question.

 

Does the OA require the candidate to perform an embarrassing act in front of the other members?

 

And I warn you if you say "yes" somebody is going to ask you to name it because many of us are OA and we know that there isn't any such inane requirement.

 

Not even one that you can conjure through some overactive imigination or pretense.

 

 

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Oh for Pete's sake answer the question. Does the OA require the candidate to perform an embarrassing act in front of the other members?

Aggravating isn't it!

I guess you need to define embarrassing? Tossing rocks into bucket could be embarrassing. Just having to complete the ordeal could be embarrassing!

And I warn you if you say "yes" somebody is going to ask you to name it because many of us are OA and we know that there isn't any such inane requirement.

And why does it have to be embarrassing? It is an initiation! And initiations are prohibited.

 

G2SS Physical hazing and initiations are prohibited and may not be included as part of any Scouting activity.

 

Sounds like the ordeal to me! And I am an OA member!

Not even one that you can conjure through some overactive imigination or pretense.

Don't need an over active imagination.

 

OGE,

I'm not taking shots or sitting here "rubbing my hands". My point is if you consider singing for lost items hazing why don't you consider the OA ordeal hazing? Valid question!

 

Ed Mori

Troop 1

1 Peter 4:10(This message has been edited by evmori)

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"I wrote the original question and it was the first time I used the forum, so I was a bit worried about responses. The singing for forgotten items has been going on for some time in our troop, but an incident which was the "last staw" for me was when a 13 year old scout forgot his scout uniform on a camping weekend which was with the troop only. The troop policy is to not take him. The SM was not there, so the Asst Scout Master didn't have it in his heart to call his mother to come get him. The SM did arrive at the campsite later that evening. The next day, in order to make a point of the scout forgetting his uniform, he made him were his (the Scout Master's) size 3X Large scout shirt for pictures. Of course, all the other scouts were laughing. After the trip when the SM asked the Asst. Scout master to send him the picture to show it around, the Asst. would not. Just wanted your thoughts on this."

 

This is not hazing - this is abuse. I would report it to your SE immediately.

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In troops where singing for lost items is the norm, are the Scouters also expected to sing when they lose something, or just the Scouts?

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In troops where singing for lost items is the norm, are the Scouters also expected to sing when they lose something, or just the Scouts?

 

Everyone sings!

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I find myself getting overly emotionally invested in this topic. I beleive having a troop policy/tradition/whatever of making someone sing or otherwise perform for the troop for a lost article is hazing. I dont beleive the OA Ordeal, Brotherhood or Vigil Ceremonies are. I beleive I have made valid arguments supporting my views. Perhaps they are strong, perhaps they are not. I do know my continued active participation in this thread will not be positive to scouting.

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"I find myself getting overly emotionally invested in this topic. I believe having a troop policy/tradition/whatever of making someone sing or otherwise perform for the troop for a lost article is hazing. I dont beleive the OA Ordeal, Brotherhood or Vigil Ceremonies are.

I'm in complete agreement with you.

CBW

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Bob White, I said, after qualification, YES.

I do understand that the intent to do harm, etc. does not exist. In that respect my answer may not meet legal scrutiny. Instead I am trying to see it through the eyes of a boy who may miss an opportunity as well as the benefit of such recognition...because he sees the ordeal in terms identical to those of hazing. My dictionary defines ordeal:

1 : a primitive means used to determine guilt or innocence by submitting the accused to dangerous or painful tests believed to be under supernatural control

2 : a severe trial or experience

 

When I went through the ordeal, way back when, it was clear to me that the ordeal was intended to simulate definition number 2. We slept under the stars with limited (or no) bed clothing, were not allowed to speak, ate practically nothing, and then worked all day in the blazing sun or rain with minimal breaks and food. Today, the candidates are no longer disqualified for speaking (we were) but most of the rest of the ordeal remains the same. What I observe here, during ordeals under the summer Southern sun, easily passes my test for definition number 2.

 

In the eyes of a boy whose imagination has been working on this, I understand how he could dread such an experience. If he meets all other qualifications for this honor and recognition but, for dread of the ordeal, takes himself out of consideration, that is a shame.

 

I submit that if the ordeal merely became a service project with good working conditions, most of the argument over this would go away. I think that camaraderie would not suffer and its just possible that with better conditions, the project would benefit as well.

 

OGE, I must have missed something along the way, I'm not sure why you have reacted so strongly. I hope you can see that I am trying to be constructive here.

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Packsaddle,

 

An extended backpacking trek (a la Philmont) may be considered and ordeal by many scouts (and adults). In fact, I consider long term treks that I have taken to have been more arduous than any ordeal or service project in the OA.

 

Suppose then, that a scout wants that arrowhead patch, but is afraid of the trek and decides not to go because of it. Is that wrong in your opinion? Candidates hear the tests before they are asked whether they wish to continue. They have to decide whether this is something that they wish to with their fellow candidates to show their willingness to service and their willingness to learn the lessons of the tests. I see nothing wrong with this.

 

Now the question of whether this is a violation of the BSA's no hazing or initiation policy is another matter. I think that the ceremonials of the OA do include initiations. The difference, I believe, is that they have been carefully examined, submitted, and approved. They have been found not to be psychologically or emotionally damaging in any way. The only symbols worn by the candidates (not unlike the uniform itself) are symbols of being chosen for quality and set apart for a higher purpose. There are no acts of submission to any ceremonial figure. The acts of service are to one's friends. There are also acts of cameraderie with all one's fellows. These are taken in common (not unlike the Scout Oath and Law).

 

The OA does involve initiations. Then again, so does the BSA itself. A scout is expected to recite the Oath on his own, to put on a uniform (some see this as below their dignity..), and pledge alliegance (an act beyond anything in the OA) to a flag and a Republic. Yes, the BSA does approve of initiations in the OA, but they are no more damaging or demeaning than the initiations of the Boy Scout troop itself. Perhaps the BSA should change the wording on its initiation prohibition, but it should not change its practice.

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This issue has long ago been settled and this issue is no longer about hazing and hasn't been for a very long time.

 

The issue is now obedience. That's right, ol' number seven, obedience.

 

The BSA has a rule, not a guideline, not a suggestion, a rule. And the rule is that the whole singing thing and other such acts are not allowed. Period, end of discussion, next page.

 

Now, as adult leaders of the BSA who are duty bound to subscribe and adhere to the rules of the BSA and have agreed to run the BSA program for the boys. Are we going to do as we all ask of our Scouts and be obedient and obey the rules or not?(This message has been edited by Mike Long)

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