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Decorum And Acting Scoutlike


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I hesitate to respond to any of this, but I suspect there are some out there who have joined the forum fairly recently who are scratching their heads about what is going on in this thread.  I therefore feel compelled (perhaps foolishly) to offer some explanation.  I am trying to word this as neutrally as possible.

This thread, and the two posts in this thready by @SCOUTER-Terry, the owner of Scouter.com, were a response to the reaction of some in this forum to the decision by the BSA in 2015 to end the exclusion of leaders on the basis of sexual orientation, except for CO's that are religious institutions whose values dictate otherwise.  During that time, there were certain posts that the moderators (of which I was and am one) viewed as unacceptable for this forum - some with photos and other graphic graphics - and we took the actions that we felt were appropriate.  A few of the posts were, quite frankly, disgusting. There were those in this forum who disagreed with certain actions by some of the moderators, and said so.  Some disagreed very strongly, and there was a certain amount of (in my view) "bashing" of the moderators.  Of course, those doing the "bashing" felt that it was fully justified.  Things got pretty heated.  One person ended up getting himself banned.  A couple of others left in a huff.  (In light of EagleDad's comments above, I feel compelled to mention that he always stated his views in a gentlemanly way.  But some others did not.) 

Into this scene strides the owner of this forum. Terry's first post in this thread clarifies what is acceptable on the subject and what isn't.  The second, in response to further complaints about the moderators, basically says hey, lay off the moderators, and if you want to complain, complain to me (Terry), not in the forum.  I personally appreciated his comments.  Nobody was being prevented from expressing their opinion in a Scoutlike way.

If anyone really wants to see the background of what I am talking about, I would suggest first reading this thread from the beginning, and then, for those who really have time to kill and are not of faint heart, read the threads in the "Issues and Politics" section from, say, the second week of July to the first week of August, 2015.  You will not see the "worst" few posts, because they were deleted.  But some of what is there is still bad enough.

All of which, among other things, led a significant number of people (not including me) to feel that the Issues and Politics section should not be here at all, but here it remains.

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The volunteer moderators of this forum do cheerful service, usually just keeping SCOUTER.com organized and enjoyable.    The policy and standard of decorum for participation here has always included

@seguru, welcome to the forum? Anyway, nobody said you can't express your opinion. But if you're not courteous then we will remove posts. Those are the rules. 

As I promised Sentinel, I took time off and took a hike.  While I'm back I'll take this time to apologize to BDPT00 and the forums in general for 'going off' the way I did. Stosh was right, I should

Well, I for one am always grateful to those who are generous enough with their time to help guide and tame the discussions that go on here, and compared to some other forums I have been a part of, I have found the conversations here to be predominantly civil and considerate. Thank you, moderators, for all that you do to provide a safe place for learning and discussion. I know I have benefited HUGELY from it as I have used this forum to expand my understanding of Scouting and connected with people of similar purpose!

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I have to mimic The Latin Scot's comments, this forum is predominantly civil and considerate. It's members manage to disagree (to a large extent) with civility and compassion. When they do fail, it's usually in minor ways and often apologies are given. Unlike so many other forums that quickly devolve into hateful shouting.

I have said this before, there are people on this forum that I sometimes strongly disagree with, but everyone of them are people that I would be honored to call friend and would gladly share their company around the campfire (with one exception that hasn't posted in a long time). Because from their many posts here, I see how they are good people that really care about scouting and the boys (and girls). We all want what is best, it's just sometime we disagree on what that is, or how to get there.

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  • 7 months later...

The Scouter Forum was a place I could come to for advice in Scouting, sadly, lately all it has become is a forum to bash others and to turn their words around to bash some more.  I am sad that all the changes in Scouting have resulted in other Scouters feel the need to berate other Scouters and make fun of their posts.  People would start a post talking about one subject and others would make sure they change the subject to enable them to push their views.  God forbid you site a BSA Regulation or Policy.  That will get turned around into something that doesn't look anything familiar to what your post was.  I hope things change on this page as it was a good place to get help.  I will not be coming back as I have been beat up enough and for some reason the moderators do not feel the need to step in.  Good Luck to all you Lifelong Scouters out there that truly love and enjoy the program.  I for one will continue to keep my Troop moving in the direction that Lord Baden Powell envisioned.

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As stated in 

"Members can "report" a topic or response which does not follow the Scout Oath and Law, by using the  "Report Post" feature in the upper right corner of the response."

You did not report your complaint to moderators who apparently saw no more than the usual back and forth.  Which topic(s) was this in?  

@MattR @desertrat  @NJCubScouter @LeCastor

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On February 1, 2019 at 6:05 AM, RememberSchiff said:

As stated in 

"Members can "report" a topic or response which does not follow the Scout Oath and Law, by using the  "Report Post" feature in the upper right corner of the response."

You did not report your complaint to moderators who apparently saw no more than the usual back and forth.  Which topic(s) was this in?  

@MattR @desertrat  @NJCubScouter @LeCastor

Are you responding to my post?

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4 minutes ago, RememberSchiff said:

Yes I was...but more than a week later maybe just water over the dam?

No water under the bridge.  I am disappointed that same members are allowed to distort facts and give advice contrary to BSA Policy and no one corrects them. You @RememberSchiff of all people that I have followed for years always were a down the middle Scouter that I could always look to see how "You" did it for good direction.  Now you are a moderator that seems to blow things off and go "Whatever" when it comes to issues that might be "sensitive". This site was a great place for Scouters to come to for advice and ideas, now it is a place for people to air their Political views and Personal issues.  I received a beating for not being clear enough on a thread that was talking about a Scout being Suspended but because I didn't say "suspended" each time, my post wad taken out of context and I was treated like I kicked their dog or something.  No time did the moderators get involved.  Very sad.

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1 hour ago, Ranman328 said:

I received a beating for not being clear enough on a thread that was talking about a Scout being Suspended but because I didn't say "suspended" each time, my post wad taken out of context and I was treated like I kicked their dog or something.  No time did the moderators get involved.  Very sad.

These is a saying "never attribute to malice what can adquately be explained by incompetence."   How about considering accepting that some people genuinely misunderstood you and were not trying to take your words out of context?   

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  • 4 weeks later...

A few decades ago the "Issues & Politics" thread was created for the specific purpose to house many of the controversial areas of Scouting.   Therefore, as a moderator, it was my belief to be slightly more tolerant of behavior that I thought was questionable - that is, something I may take an issue with in "Advancement" would get more of a pass in "Issues & Politics."

But just like I tried to discuss in a Scout like manner on  this forum why I thought the decision to ban avowed homosexuals was incorrect before the policy was changed (we could debate if it really ever was an official policy - IMHO it was not) we should be able to debate the policy now.   But we should take great care and err on the side of caution not to disparage youth for their sexual identity regardless of what it is.  That really falls out of our purview and should be up to the Scout's family and others.   I treat religion in the same way - I've been a member of a Roman Catholic charter organization and an Episcopal charter organization and am a member of neither.   I could answer questions about religion wrt the BSA but I made no attempt to "teach" the Scouts about certain denominations.   That was a task for others.

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Sorry, but before I identify as a Scouter, I first identify as an American... and anytime someone says they're going to "block" or "delete" or "censor" free speech, I say NO, and offer the warning that you don't "get it" when it comes to Free Speech.

The proper response to "offensive" speech is MORE SPEECH, not less... especially in a forum specifically categorized as "politics" where there are deeply-held and fundamental beliefs.     The "sanitizing" of opinions is not healthy, despite your good intentions.

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  • 2 months later...
On 7/24/2015 at 2:35 PM, MattR said:

Terry, I agree with 99% of what you said and what you and the moderators do for this forum and scouting. Without the help I've found on this forum I would have given up on scouting a long time ago - and I'm not done needing help. I also agree that acting scout like is paramount. That said, I'd like to hold your feet to the flame to a much higher standard than anyone else here is held to. Most likely I just want to make a point and picking on you is the best chance I have to do that. Please let me explain. Your post comment "(or start one of your own!)" reflects what was said a lot to those people that wanted a change in the membership policy. That comment was always said with a bit of my way or the highway, take it or leave it, I could care less about what you want attitude. I've never thought it to be scout like. Yes, you said up front that you respect the religious differences of everyone here, and yes, your point that you won't tolerate the denigration of gay scouts is also admirable. However, that phrase doesn't help and right now we need to figure out how to help each other.

 

We need to help each other against the extremes that will never be happy with what the BSA is doing. We also need to keep helping each other learn about scouting. We have a wide range of expertise here and the last thing I'd like to see is a big chunk of that leaving over this issue. Some will. But hopefully many will stay. I would very much like to invite them to my campfire.

 

This forum reminds me of my extended family and how sometimes it's more important to tolerate your father-in-law than confront him. It made me better in the long run, even if it took nearly 30 years!

 

Thanks again for what all y'all on this forum do (All y'all is Southern for "every single one of the many" :))

30 years.

It is how it ends that counts.

 

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On 7/25/2015 at 7:48 AM, packsaddle said:

David, I've seen that already but not, I suspect, in the context you are thinking about. I've seen (counting through memory now) about a dozen, at least a dozen times that a leader in both cub and boy scout units have suggested a different faith as superior somehow to the faith that a boy's family currently followed. It has happened to me and my children as well. For my children, on a couple of occasions when they politely declined, they were informed that they were "going to go to hell" as a result. Do you think these 'invitations' came from persons from 'liberal' faiths?

 

This kind of nonsense is not something new and I've seen it all my life. I admit I was surprised when it 'emerged' from unit leaders but it did.

I have never found labels to be useful or explanatory.  Liberal, conservative, well, they mean nothing to me.  I am much more interested in the opinion of A on issue X.  That I can meaningful respond to.

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