Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
The Latin Scot

Wearing uniform hats indoors?

Recommended Posts

Hey everybody, I have a question about the wearing of official uniform headgear indoors. I have a campaign hat which I love to pieces, and wear as often as I can. Now to be clear, I was raised well enough to know that I should remove it inside chapels, in front of ladies, at the table, et cetera, and of course when I am wearing any other kind of hat it comes off when I am indoors, but I was under the impression that when wearing official uniforms, be they Scout, military, law enforcement, or whatever, they could be worn otherwise even when indoors. I don't ask my Cubs to remove their hats indoors for den meetings; we meet at our local church, but in the classroom wing, not the chapel (where I do insist hats be removed out of reverence). But in all other cases their hats are always on; it's a part of their uniform and I like to see them fully dressed.

 

My brother, however, is of the mind that all hats should be removed as soon as we walk through the doors of any building, period - uniform or not. I have searched all the materials I have over and over and can't find a conclusive answer yet, but I know somebody here will be able to help - when are official uniform hats appropriate to wear, and when ought they to be removed? Any help or insight, but especially official BSA publications on the issue, will be greatly appreciated.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I also just realized this topic is better suited to the Uniforms section. Moderators, feel free to move this if you wish!

Edited by The Latin Scot

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My brother, however, is of the mind that all hats should be removed as soon as we walk through the doors of any building, period - uniform or not. I have searched all the materials I have over and over and can't find a conclusive answer yet, but I know somebody here will be able to help - when are official uniform hats appropriate to wear, and when ought they to be removed? Any help or insight, but especially official BSA publications on the issue, will be greatly appreciated.

 

All I can find is this.

 

Headgear Regulations

Official headgear may be worn while the unit or individual is participating in an indoor formal ceremony or service duty, except in religious institutions where custom forbids. Typical indoor activities of this type are flag ceremonies, inspections, orderly duty, or ushering service. In any informal indoor activity where no official ceremony is involved, the headgear is removed as when in street clothes. The Scouter dress uniform is always worn without headgear.

 

For me that wording is a bit vague. "As when in street clothes" is confusing. Why not just say "remove head gear all other times"?

 

Our unit suggests that guys not wear hats in doors unless part of a ceremony.

Edited by Col. Flagg
  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I also just realized this topic is better suited to the Uniforms section. Moderators, feel free to move this if you wish!

 

So moved.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Personal view ... not BSA interpretation ... ... At some point, it's a utilitarian issue.  If you have a roof over your head, you don't need to wear a hat.  I also take my jacket off when I go into a heated building.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

(Retired military guy typing....)

 

For military, there are very few exceptions where hats/covers are worn indoors (escorting prisoner, or in formation, etc.).  Ninety nine percent of the time, the hat comes off swiftly, right at the threshold of the door.

 

Regardless of branch of service, basic training instills the no-hat-indoor habit in a very forceful, life-long, unambiguous manner...:)

 

Though I've been retired for a couple years, this habit remains.  I don't correct scouts or scouters, though...to each their own.  But I can always spot another vet by how quickly they remove their hat at the threshold.  :)

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To me, this is the key sentence - "Official headgear may be worn while the unit or individual is participating in an indoor formal ceremony or service duty, except in religious institutions where custom forbids."

 

Similar to military practice (ex-Navy here), one will wear their cover indoors when on duty (quarter deck watch, master at arms, etc).  If I remember correctly, it comes from wanting to keep hands free to perform official duties and to indicate the duty personnel.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you all for helping to point me in the right direction. I found this link: https://blog.scoutingmagazine.org/2013/10/29/tuesday-talkback-when-should-scouts-wear-hats-indoors/which pointed me to the official policies regarding hats, which I greatly appreciate. I also thank you veterans for letting me know the military protocols regarding their "covers" (a term which I am now excited to introduce to my Scouts!). If those in the military remove their hats so promptly and habitually when they go indoors, it seems only fit and proper for me to do the same. Thank you for giving me such clear models to emulate!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you all for helping to point me in the right direction. I found this link: https://blog.scoutingmagazine.org/2013/10/29/tuesday-talkback-when-should-scouts-wear-hats-indoors/which pointed me to the official policies regarding hats, which I greatly appreciate. I also thank you veterans for letting me know the military protocols regarding their "covers" (a term which I am now excited to introduce to my Scouts!). If those in the military remove their hats so promptly and habitually when they go indoors, it seems only fit and proper for me to do the same. Thank you for giving me such clear models to emulate!

 

On the term "cover", being a non-military person myself, the first time I ever heard that term used to refer to headwear was about 12 years ago when our troop first attended "Scout weekend" at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, and the very nice and professional 20-year-old-ish midshipman who led us on our tour of the Academy referred to taking off our "covers" when going into a building.  He was also an Eagle Scout if I recall correctly. That was a great trip, even if it did get pretty chilly at night (I guess it was in early November) and in the football game, Navy beat Rutgers, my alma mater.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you all for helping to point me in the right direction. I found this link: https://blog.scoutingmagazine.org/2013/10/29/tuesday-talkback-when-should-scouts-wear-hats-indoors/which pointed me to the official policies regarding hats, which I greatly appreciate

I think you missed the link in this post that quoted the policy and gave you document. ;) I took out the middle man (the blog).

Edited by Col. Flagg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think you missed the link in this post that quoted the policy and gave you document. ;) I took out the middle man (the blog).

 

I didn't miss it; yours was one of the posts that pointed me in that direction in the first place. I apologize if I should have credited you more specifically, but I am grateful to you for putting up that link. Thank you!

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One issue on this topic is that the BSA guidance used to be "keep hats on indoors most of the time". Go look at all those illustrations and photographs from the BSA publications showing scouts with hats on indoors. I know most of the troops around here appear to be "keep the hats on" types. The BSA is not the military, and has deliberately cultivated different traditions in many ways (while adopting others of course - don't expect consistency from the BSA).

 

I don't like the current guidance, as it fly's in the face of what I understand is the historical tradition in scouting. You are not in full uniform without the hat (hence the modern need to put it back on if you are participating in a ceremony). I (and most of the scouters in my units) are keep the hat on types. I will take it off if I enter a religious building where that is expected, and usually when I sit down to eat indoors. But otherwise it tends to stay on my head. If you want to do it differently, no problem - just don't snap at my scouts about their hats, you will get an ear-full from me.

 

The problem with hard rules is that what is appropriate is often really dependent on context. For example, no hats at meal times. I know of a few religious traditions where not wearing a hat a mealtimes is considered disrespectful. I would never ask or expect a scout from one of these traditions to take his hat off at the diner table, nor would I assume he is being disrespectful.

 

As for standard civilian hat etiquette, when was the last time you saw a hat rack or a hat check at a restaurant, movie theater or other venue? Some high end theaters have a coat check that can check hats, but most don't. Practicalities have to inform etiquette: if there isn't any place to put that expensive hat, what are people supposed to do with it? Wearing it at the restaurant table is often the only real option (if you don't want to let it get stepped on, kicked, dirty or lost). When everyone wore hats, society made accommodations. Now that the vast majority don't, society doesn't. Therefor the rules need to change (unless you answer is "don't wear a hat").

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×