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What would B-P think?

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Given all the issues discussed about Scouting that seem to ruffle feathers of both Scouters and non-Scouters, I wonder which would be the ones that would concern B-P the most.

 

I would not call myself a B-P historian, but I have read a decent amount by and about him, and in my opinion topics that seem to get the most attention wouldn’t be at the top of his list of concerns.

 

My guess is less emphasis on outdoor programs, poor use of patrol method, interference of youth-led philosophy and decline in membership, among other things, would be a bigger concern to B-P than gay Scouts/Scouters, woman leaders, female Scouting units and professional Scouts.

 

What issues do you think would be at the top of B-P’s concern list?

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I think he would be deeply concerned about our dependence on prefabricated tents. ;)

 

Actually, I bet ...

 

He would be thrilled with Scouts Indonesia. The scouts in former Eastern Block countries would receive high praise for rebuilding from scratch. He would tout those as models for the rest of us.

Scouts UK's decision to give different oaths for different religious sensibilities would baffle him.

Regarding BSA, he would challenge us about what we're doing with an abundance of riches.

He would be very concerned about facilities for scouts in distant parts of the world.

 

It would be neat to have a monthly podcast from him.

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Actually, people living in the roaring twenties dealt with many of the same issues we are talking about now. Since B-P didn't embrace these values during the era of "Anything Goes", I have no reason to believe he would do so today. 

Edited by David CO
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Aaah, the thread in which we project our values onto BP. ;)

 

 

Scouts UK's decision to give different oaths for different religious sensibilities would baffle him.

 

 

Aye, he'd probably just go "I say, keep it simple, one promise for everyone. The girl guides have managed it"

 

He'd probably be a confirmed environmentalist, if you judge from "leave the world a little better than you found it". 

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Here's a link to an interesting article about B-P:

 

https://www.theguardian.com/uk/2000/jul/30/bensummerskill.theobserver

 

'We scrambled down the bank where we were sitting... and he came towards us demanding: 'What the dickens are you doing here?'

'Our `patrol leader' said: 'We want to do the same thing as the boys. We want to be girl scouts.' Baden-Powell said: 'That's impossible, this is only for the boys.'

'We thought he was going to send us away but in the end he said: 'I'll think about it.' We went into the arena when it began to rain and then joined the march-past. We were put at the back with some other girls.

'We were laughed at, we were whistled at, there were catcalls, but we didn't mind. We were there and we were part of the show and when the speeches were over and the telegram from the King was read we raised our hats and our poles and cheered the King and we did the same and cheered Baden-Powell.'

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By setting up an independent program for the gals, it would seem that he wasn't all that excited about co-ed, not even on the scouter level.

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Stosh, at the risk of thread creep, lets not forget who BP was.

 

He was born and brought up in Victorian England and gained all his experiences from that time much of it serving in the military at the height of the British empire. The UK has changed. The USA has changed. The world has changed. What BP did or did not make of coed scouting at that time is irrelevant. 

 

More the question would be what would he think, should he have lived to whatever age he would now be, with a further century of experience? That century has seen women prove their worth in many different fields to which they were previously either official or culturally barred. I am guessing he would have been won round.

 

However back to the main point of the OP, I think that he would be most concerned with whether the scout movement was continuing to serve the youth members. Whether scouts are being given the opportunity to lead, whether there are the actual places for them to do so (eg campsites and the like), as Ian said I think he would be deeply concerned with the state of the environment and would be championing scouting as a force for good in terms of looking after it. I think he would be deeply troubled by the state of mental health among young people in the western world.

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I think it would be difficult. Like our UK friends have said, we are projecting modern values upon historical figures. It's a dangerous territory to go into. Next thing we know, we will be asking to tear down his statues and change the whole world movement. 

 

Would he be ok with the Secretary General of the WSOM being a 33 year old Jordanian and the headquarters being in Malaysia? Yeah, I think he would. 

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So, we are saying folks of BPs day didn’t understand (or respect) the value of single gender role models? Could maybe the possibly be that are generation doesn’t get it?

 

After seeing what national politics did to the Canadian Scouts, I think he would have concern of who controls the organization vision.

 

Barry

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I think he’d very much hate the infusion of girls in to Boy Scouts. Reading his book that was a key issue for him.

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With all due respect to BP, I care as much about his opinion on the inclusion of girls in BSA as I do about the Founding Fathers opinion on women being able to vote.

 

That doesn't mean I condemn either based on modern morality, but it also doesn't mean that I think we should be wedded to or stuck with 19th century thinking.

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With all due respect to BP, I care as much about his opinion on the inclusion of girls in BSA as I do about the Founding Fathers opinion on women being able to vote.

 

That doesn't mean I condemn either based on modern morality, but it also doesn't mean that I think we should be wedded to or stuck with 19th century thinking.

Being Pedantic, but BP wrote Scouting for Boys and founded the movement in the early 20th century. The Founding Fathers wrote the Constitution in the 18th Century. The 19th Century was 1801-1900.

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Being Pedantic, but BP wrote Scouting for Boys and founded the movement in the early 20th century. The Founding Fathers wrote the Constitution in the 18th Century. The 19th Century was 1801-1900.

 

Without being pedantic ;)  , I think BPs views were ensconced in the 19th century. He was born in 1857, after all.

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Aaah, the thread in which we project our values onto BP. ;)

 

Exactly.  He is similar to George Washington in that regard, with either of them you can usually find a quote that supports whatever you want to say.  The "what would B-P say" game has been played many times in this forum, and the great part is that everybody wins, every time!  Because each player decides his/her own score, and because it is almost never possible to prove who is right and who is wrong, because B-P is not around to ask him the question.

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I think BPs views were ensconced in the 19th century. He was born in 1857, after all.

 

Beat me to it.

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