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Eagle_23

Changing the Order

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Folks,

 

I think I have an idea of what's going on, and we all do this at times. And that is parochialism. We all see things through our own eyes, and situations vary not only from region to regions, but also district to district.

 

So I think some of the negative attitudes SP is seeing is in his neckof the woods, which would not be viable in others.

 

And I can see a little of that. I've seen a little of that attitude, thankfully not much.

 

But overall I have to agree with Emb. Most of the adult Arrowmen I know are in it for the kids and are selfless in their service.

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SP, from one volunteer to another, I've simply been stating the case for one of the hats I wear in scouting. I'm sorry your lodge has left a bad taste in your mouth. I seem to have offended you. Nothing I said was intended as an offense. I apologize if it was taken that way.

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"Scouting is all about cheerful service."

 

While this is true, there are some who don't get it. And sadly for some people you need to be a bit blunt about it.

 

"But telling adults that you aren't wanted except as a car driver and grunt laborer is demeaning and entirely the wrong attitude, in my opinion. "

 

You're entitled to your opinion.

 

But the issue, IMO, isn't the attitude but maybe the expression of it.

 

The thing is, as adults in the Order, our job is to advise and SUPPORT the youth in THEIR PROGRAM.

 

Note that.

 

Advise and support the youth.

 

More so then Boy Scouting (certainly more so then Cubs), the OA is a YOUTH RUN program.

 

And sadly there are some adults who don't get it. Let's be honest, we all know of the troops who are 'boy led' in name only, who are really adult led. Most lodges I would hope would try to be diplomatic about it, but sometimes we have to be blunt. Sometimes we have to have 'adult meetings' with all of the adults to ensure that everyone gets the message (especially important after an Ordeal when we have a new group of adults who join). Most get it. But you always have the few, especially the new adults who had never been in the OA as a youth who don't get it. So we try to explain it. And sometimes it get to the point where we have to say the above to them.

 

Frankly, I don't think most old time adults get offended by that attitude. Often times because most of us understand our role in the OA, and we're usually among the first to pull aside an adult who doesn't get it and help explain things to them.

 

 

 

 

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If an adult is active in supporting the outdoor program in his own unit, then he certainly deserves to be considered once he has met the requirements. The adults with whom I have occasional issue are ones that somehow get nominated from outside the unit, and who basically do nothing to truly encourage the camping of units. Fortunately, there are fewer now a days it seems in our lodge, though still some. Still wish National would consider alternate requirements for unit level scouters who have spent years doing the 2 and 3 day campouts, but use their limited vacation days for family, so never do the long term. Especially if they have made the effort to get advanced outdoor training. Have had a couple that were deemed ineligible because of no summer camp, yet had spent in excess of 25-30 nights out with the troop over a few years, and did High Adventure training, Trail Boss, and first aid, including wilderness level. One finally was able to go to summer camp; but his son was pushing 17 by then. We had nominated his dad the year before, including an explanation of his qualifications, but our local SE refused to waive the summer camp part. Really was disappointing, as he had hoped to go through an Ordeal with his son. But, when he did do it, his son was there getting Brotherhood.

 

But, as one of the gold tabs informed me at jambo 2010; "No way will they ever consider having an optional adult requirement. If they cannot go to summer camp; tough luck." Or words to that effect.

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Skeptic,

 

There are some things that cannot be waived and the camping requirement for volunteers, stressing volunteers, is one of them. Pros are automatically eligible, even if they don't have a nite under nylon, b/c it is considered part of their job responsibilities (DEs are de facto chapter staff advisers, but depending upon their boss may or may not be involved), so they need to go through the Ordeal ASAP if not already a member.

 

However this is the definition of long term camp:

* A "long-term camp" is one consisting of at least six consecutive days and five nights of resident camping. A "short-term camp" is anything less than that. If memory serves, that can include one fo the HA bases and Jambo.

 

 

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Eagle92;

 

I understand the current requirement, though my understanding is that any council SE can, if he chooses waive a particular element in special circumstances. But, my point is that for adults with families and limited vacation have family priorities which may take their longer term time and making it hard for them to work in the resident camp. Meanwhile, they spend almost every month out for one to three nights, do the training, teach skills for camping and hiking, and so on, but they are not allowed to be nominated unless they are willing to choose the troop over their family. That can easily be fixed with alternate requirements which include what I just described. For example: use the current in place requirment; or have 25-30 (you choose a reasonable number)of overnights with the troop as a leader, a tenure of say at least two or three years, and complete certain training, including specific outdoor training and first aide.

 

My point is that there are adults nominated and approved that barely have those 15 days and nights, including the long term, and who have only the minimal training. Their contributions are far less than someone with two or three years of regular monthly camping; and their skills are often inferior and their repertoire with the scouts less inclusive. If anything, if the alternate was installed as an option, those that were nominated under it would be, most likely, better OA members.

 

JMHO of course.

 

 

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>

 

 

 

I've never heard anyone from the lodge in the districts I've been involved with make any such statements.

 

It's that attitude expressed on these forums that I find offensive.

 

If some OA leader had made that point when I was nominated for OA as a Scoutmaster, I would certainly have complied with those wishes by never doing the Ordeal. And I wouldn't have risked offending other adult leaders by nominating them in future years.

 

It just might be that if some units say "we don't do OA" when called, the reason might be that someone is making that point in a ham handed and offensive way.

 

What a shame! For thirty years I felt honored to have been nominated for OA as an adult. Now I discover that was a mistake and rather than feeling honored I should have been told my function was to be a driver and grunt laborer.

 

You guys have finally stripped those rose petals from my eyes! Happy with that?

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SP,

 

All you had to say was apology not accepted. Since we are being honest with each other, I would appreciate it if you would quit putting words in my mouth. While you are welcome to your own interpretation, it is incorrect in regard to my comments. I think I've done an ample job of explaining things here and it isn't what you think you heard. The other posters seem to get it and understand. We just need to agree to disagree.

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"What a shame! For thirty years I felt honored to have been nominated for OA as an adult. Now I discover that was a mistake and rather than feeling honored I should have been told my function was to be a driver and grunt laborer. "

 

SP- you seem hellbent on finding some way to get upset about the Order.

 

Rather then trying to come up with some explanation, I think it might be a good idea to go back to basics.

 

Here is what the current "Guide for Officers and Advisors", an official publication of the Order says about adult selection into the order.

 

QUOTE- Recommendations of the adult selection committee... will be candidates for induction, provided the following conditions are fulfilled:

 

* Selection of the adult is based on the ability to perform the necessary functions to help the Order fulfill its purpose, and not for recognition of service, including current or prior achievement and positions.

 

* The individual will be an asset to the Order because of demonstrated abilities that fulfill the purpose of the Order.

 

* The adult leader's membership will provide a positive example for the growth and development of the youth members of the lodge. END QUOTE

 

QUOTE Because the Order of the Arrow is principally a youth organization, unit, district, and council Scouters are not selected for membership as a recognition. Selection should take place only when the adult's position in Boy Scouting or Varsity Scouting will make Order of the Arrow membership more meaningful in the lives of the youth membership. END QUOTE

 

this may be found on page 21 under Membership Requirements.

 

Instead of making any comments, I would just suggest you read this and think about it.

 

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As I noted earlier, no one I've dealt with in OA has ever mentioned the differing expectations for youth vs adult leaders brought up in this thread.

 

It sounds like you folks are correct in your claims.

 

If this had been pointed out to me at the time, I would have refused OA membership.

 

Just tonight the OA chapter adviser who has spent much time rebuilding our district OA chapter announced he can't continue with the contribution he makes without help. He is a fine person, but I suppose he'll have to look elsewhere for help.

 

Whether justified or not, the distinction described seems like a pointedly unfriendly policy. Grasping, I'd call it. Perhaps there are reasons for it, but it is decidedly unattractive to me.

 

I have plenty of Scouting activities to do, so I don't need OA to keep me busy. No doubt OA will soldier on without my support, assistance or participation.

 

Congratulations on your accomplishment by pointing out this membership provision: another person now opposed to OA.

 

 

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That's OK SP, we're used to most OA members choosing to be inactive for a variety of reasons. That's why we like to inform Troops during the election process of what they are looking for in the way of youth and adult candidates. Full disclosure. We want the troops to take the process seriously. There are in each troop, those adults who struggle to have time to assist with the troop. There are those people who only have time for the troop and dedicate themselves to it. There are those people with more time on their hands who desire to help beyond their troop. People who want to serve on daycamp staffs, be commissioners at summer camp, assist in training courses like IOLS, NYLT or WB, serve as popcorn kernels, etc. Those are the people who have shown a desire to serve above and beyond that should be nominated. While they are nominated for the service resources they can provide for the benefit of the boys, it is still an honor to be nominated.

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>

 

 

 

Apparently not:

 

 

QUOTE Because the Order of the Arrow is principally a youth organization, unit, district, and council Scouters are not selected for membership as a recognition. Selection should take place only when the adult's position in Boy Scouting or Varsity Scouting will make Order of the Arrow membership more meaningful in the lives of the youth membership. END QUOTE

 

 

 

You can't have it both ways.

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Whether or not it is an honor does not really matter as the OA is a thing of the spirit. However any adult should feel good to be recoginized as one who will make Order of the Arrow membership more meaningful in the lives of the youth membership. If you are recognized as such isn't that an "honor."

 

Arguing sementics and "bling" is not what the order is about.(This message has been edited by johnponz)

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Proud of having been elected by my peers as a youth. Probably meant more to me than the Eagle badge. Sadly, today's youth don't feel the same way, in my experience.

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