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christineka

When Doing Community Service

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It's better to ask for forgiveness than ask for permission.  If he's proud of his uniform, wear it.

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There are specific events where wearing the uniform is a no-no, hence why BSA says "Ask your leader".

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And BSA, not being especially knowledgeable these days, cannot conceive of a Scout thinking his PL is his "leader."  How sad.

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There are specific events where wearing the uniform is a no-no, hence why BSA says "Ask your leader".

  

And BSA, not being especially knowledgeable these days, cannot conceive of a Scout thinking his PL is his "leader."  How sad.

Exactly where does BSA tell a boy "Ask your leader?" And what leader handbook or training syllabus lists those "specific events" when a member should not wear the field uniform?

 

Who among us spends a lot of time finely parsing BSA rules and regulations? (http://www.scouting.org/filestore/membership/pdf/BSA_Rules_and_Regulations.pdf)

Some general principles there, but no "list." I'm not finding anything that tells me I have to warn a kid not to uniform while working a community-oriented aspect of a MB.

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If a boy is doing community service for BSA advancement or MB credit and can't be wearing the uniform, he shouldn't be doing the project in the first place.  If it isn't good enough for BSA credit find something else to do.

 

1) either there is an inherent honesty issue underlying why one can and can't wear the uniform.

 

2) there might be a politically correct hypocrisy going on here about the uniform.

 

or 

 

3) BSA is going to be faced with an embarrassing PR issue it has to try to cover up.

 

So what's the message BSA is promoting with it's uniform policy?

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Exactly where does BSA tell a boy "Ask your leader?" And what leader handbook or training syllabus lists those "specific events" when a member should not wear the field uniform?

Who among us spends a lot of time finely parsing BSA rules and regulations? (http://www.scouting.org/filestore/membership/pdf/BSA_Rules_and_Regulations.pdf)

Some general principles there, but no "list." I'm not finding anything that tells me I have to warn a kid not to uniform while working a community-oriented aspect of a MB.

The BSA website has a buried sentence about asking one's leader if in doubt on where to wear the uniform. The uniform guidelines mentions the BSA "Rules and Regulations" around when it's appropriate to wear the uniform. It would be helpful if all this was in one place, but this is BSA....we know better than to expect that. ;)

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The BSA website has a buried sentence about asking one's leader if in doubt on where to wear the uniform. The uniform guidelines mentions the BSA "Rules and Regulations" around when it's appropriate to wear the uniform. It would be helpful if all this was in one place, but this is BSA....we know better than to expect that. ;)

By implication, then, a boy asking his leader about uniforming is no more likely to get an informed opinion than a boy reading his handbook about uniforming.

 

Think about it. By her posts, we know @christeneka is about as informed a leader as any. She led a den. The uniforming issue is almost the same there as here. However, the den probably always did scouting together. Here, the boy's on his own. She's smart enough not to have confidence in an SM's opinion. Naive enough to think we'd be any more definitive.

 

This isn't just about the OP. The fact is, some kid in my unit might ask me the same question, and so far his book and my gut are the best tools I have ...

 

Partisan politics? No.

Selling used cars? No.

Doling out glue and glitter? Have yet to hear a good "Here's why not ..." :p

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By implication, then, a boy asking his leader about uniforming is no more likely to get an informed opinion than a boy reading his handbook about uniforming.

 

Think about it. By her posts, we know @christeneka is about as informed a leader as any. She led a den. The uniforming issue is almost the same there as here. However, the den probably always did scouting together. Here, the boy's on his own. She's smart enough not to have confidence in an SM's opinion. Naive enough to think we'd be any more definitive.

 

This isn't just about the OP. The fact is, some kid in my unit might ask me the same question, and so far his book and my gut are the best tools I have ...

 

Partisan politics? No.

Selling used cars? No.

Doling out glue and glitter? Have yet to hear a good "Here's why not ..." :p

 

I agree the answer is not in one place, nor is it abundantly clear what is/is not in scope unless you really, really look. The webpage for uniforms and insignia has it buried in Section 1 of a pdf and then it is not clear and only references BSA "rules and regulations" without a link to that doc (which you provided, thank goodness).

 

BSA leaves the unit lead as the say within the unit as to when wearing the uniform is appropriate. I guess BSA leaves it to him to enforce the sections of the rules and regulations (Section 2, Clause 2; Section 4, Clause 6&7). Since those sections are not very definitive either, it leaves one to think that the unit lead may have to consult council as to the whether any one event is "consistent with the rules and regulations" of BSA.

 

I agree that logic would prevail here and that it would not be an issue. BSA wants that responsibility to fall with the unit lead. But we have seen in many instances where unit leads are not trained enough or simply don't care to look to find the standard (albeit well hidden and ambiguously defined) BSA answer. 

 

One could always say, "I looked and couldn't find the answer, so we wore the uniform". Given how poorly BSA has articulated this "rule", I would have to agree that's an acceptable course.

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I would expect my son to wear his uniform to an event where he was working with little kids. What better publicity and recruitment tool is there than kids and their parents seeing an older boy doing an activity with them? The only thing that would change my opinion would be if the venue was using permanent ink, paint and super glue.

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Rule #2: Look and act like a scout.

 

If the activity forbids a scout to wear his uniform, then it's not an activity acceptable for scouts to be doing.

 

Political rally?  Do i t on your own dime, it's not part of the scout program, doing it won't get you scout credit, and in light of today's world, there are a ton of other things more important and fun to be doing anyway.

 

Selling used cars?  C'm on, really?  I have a chance to be out in the woods or in town selling cars?  

 

If I could wear my BSA uniform at everything I do in life, I'd be a happy camper, I'd have no problems with the law, and if they wanted to criticize me for my ethics, morals, or biases, they can come out into the woods and find me to yell at me.  

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So if his patrol leader says, "Heck if I know, I don't even own a uniform" is there something particularly bad that happens?

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So if his patrol leader says, "Heck if I know, I don't even own a uniform" is there something particularly bad that happens?

Depends. The unit lead is who BSA will go after. Most events are probably benign. I suspect the obvious ones Stosh noted are tone avoided.

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Twocubdad, Do you suppose that might have happened once or twice, lol?

To me the question here is not so much your pragmatic 'what happens', but rather 'what should happen' which, evidently, no one here can answer to everyone's satisfaction. What's your guess, lol? Twenty lashes with a wet noodle? Require them to interpret into English something that G.W. Bush said? Or....once WE finally figure out what the answer is (unlikely given what I'm reading here) we gently remind them of what the protocol is supposed to be (as if we've known it all along)?

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Depends. The unit lead is who BSA will go after. Most events are probably benign. I suspect the obvious ones Stosh noted are tone avoided.

"go after"? Is there even have one case where that happened?

 

The only one I recall reading about (thanks to someone on this forum) was when a boy showed up in uniform at a town council meeting and made some frank comments that got in the paper. Seems like the kid was working on a MB requirement (communications or citizenship) and something on the docket struck his interest. The SE later sent a letter saying that the scout's views were his own and did not represent those of the BSA. No wet noodles for the unit leader, who should have been quite proud of his scout.

 

Now, there is nothing in BSA literature anywhere that speaks against properly addressing an assembly while wearing your uniform. Yet we hemmed and hawed over that one too.

Edited by qwazse

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Public service.... underline the word "public".... Wear some uniform/BSA label. Digging ditch for conservation project, wear Troop informal/class B/tshirt....(full field uni/class A is overkill, but OK... Directing traffic at a voting poll, wear the formal field uni... passing out literature for a candidate, no uni at all.

Helping at the church daycare, wear the Troop T... serving as an usher for service Scout Sunday, wear the full field....

working at the local shelter, T shirt... helping with the Council climbing wall at the town festival, (it's 85F) wear the Troop T, all the same color... Helping to move the town library for renovations (thousands of books and stuff), Troop T is preferable, but Class A is okay fershur...

 

"It depends". Unit Service projects should elicit a uniform look: All Troop Ts or All Field::: "Ask your Leader".

 

Or , if NOT a unit project, "Ask yourself" (look in the book?).

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