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How about those who prefer leaders keep their hands off the kids?

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How about those who prefer leaders keep their hands off the kids?  Given the number of kids with sensory issues, and the number of kids who aren't participating with two parents, etc.   I don't see any value in the custom. 

Edited by WisconsinMomma

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One isn't going to rewrite history by citing current "norms".  It was a tradition that many new Cubs looked forward to.  I thought it was kinda fun. 

21 minutes ago, WisconsinMomma said:

How about those who prefer leaders keep their hands off the kids? 

In the later years, it was the parent who tipped the Cub upside down.  Musta been parental abuse then......

Given the number of kids with sensory issues,

A lot of us outgrew it.....

and the number of kids who aren't participating with two parents,

Divorce wasn't the "norm" back then.....

etc.   I don't see any value in the custom. 

One might not see it today, but many did back in the day....

Some today even adhere to the era of the 50's and 60's Scouting as the Golden Age.  I wonder what they know that is no longer remembered today.

 

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24 minutes ago, WisconsinMomma said:

How about those who prefer leaders keep their hands off the kids?  Given the number of kids with sensory issues, and the number of kids who aren't participating with two parents, etc.   I don't see any value in the custom. 

When It was done to me, parents were part of it. My Mom and one of the other dads held me. There was no value, it was FUN ( EMPHASIS , ok shouting a little with joy at the memory. wish my sons could have done it).

And I can second the kids were the most upset. I was doing ceremonies with the OA when the ban came about. Lots of Cubs were ticked off that they could not longer do it. Reading Mr. Ruth's letter, his explanation is as idiotic as the ban on Cub Scouts using carts on a service project ( but that can do pushmobiles) and the ban on waterguns.

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58 minutes ago, WisconsinMomma said:

How about those who prefer leaders keep their hands off the kids?  Given the number of kids with sensory issues, and the number of kids who aren't participating with two parents, etc.   I don't see any value in the custom. 

If that's a deal-breaker, then maybe Scouting, and many other things as well, can be summed up by the phrase: "It isn't for everyone".  What is regrettable is that changes made to mollify a few incessant hand wringers results in a detriment to many others seeking fun with their boys. 

Now I'm not saying that the upside-down Bobcat tradition was necessary and its demise was the death-knell of the program, but by eliminating it, a little bit of fun and joy in a specific situation is no longer an option for a far greater number.

Traditions don't have to be codified to be important. S'mores certainly aren't in the book but I'd challenge you to find a Cub Scout camping without them. You could argue the lack of nutritional value and the proximity to open flame as a reason to eliminate them and a few would sigh with relief that little Johnny won't complain about being denied a sugar rush just prior to lights out and the avoidance of the Cub Scout Comet (the panicked flinging of a flaming marshmallow) as a safety precaution. But does the the benefit outweigh the lost experience?

Edited by numbersnerd
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3 hours ago, WisconsinMomma said:

How about those who prefer leaders keep their hands off the kids? 

That is a very good point, and I think it deserves more discussion.

 

Edited by David CO

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First, here is a discussion about it --- very old, from 1997 -- that covers a lot of the topic:

https://groups.google.com/forum/#!topic/rec.scouting.usa/DXEr2AotQiw

Second, look at the news right now and inappropriate touching.  Society has changed since the 1950's.    There is to reason to physically manhandle a kid at a Pack meeting and it's wrong. 

Not everything about the good old days is good. 

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When I went through it, leaders DID NOT (emphasis) touch the Cubs except to pin the Bobcat badge on. Parents were the ones touching the Scouts and holding them. And this was something everyone knew about and was looking forward to. It was fun. In my years of seeing this done, approximately 15 years, NO ONE  was upset by the practice. The Cubs were upset when the practice was cancelled. If I recall correctly, one family  after the meeting did it in the parking lot with dad holding the Cub upside down, and older brother, either a Boy Scout or Webelos, doing the pinning. When  several other families saw that, they got into it.

10 hours ago, numbersnerd said:

Traditions don't have to be codified to be important. S'mores certainly aren't in the book but I'd challenge you to find a Cub Scout camping without them. You could argue the lack of nutritional value and the proximity to open flame as a reason to eliminate them and a few would sigh with relief that little Johnny won't complain about being denied a sugar rush just prior to lights out and the avoidance of the Cub Scout Comet (the panicked flinging of a flaming marshmallow) as a safety precaution. But does the the benefit outweigh the lost experience?

Does anyone remember when  the head Health and Safety guru stated that they were considering banning marshmallow toasting in Scouting because the H&S folks call if "campfire napalm" and a few kids have been burned by it. Only reason they didn't was because of the unanimous support for the practice. 

Sometimes I wonder if one person is against something, will the BSA ban it?

 

16 minutes ago, WisconsinMomma said:

First, here is a discussion about it --- very old, from 1997 -- that covers a lot of the topic:

https://groups.google.com/forum/#!topic/rec.scouting.usa/DXEr2AotQiw

Second, look at the news right now and inappropriate touching.  Society has changed since the 1950's.    There is to reason to physically manhandle a kid at a Pack meeting and it's wrong. 

Not everything about the good old days is good. 

 

One thing I noticed glancing over the discussion is that it appeared to be all new parents who were complaining.  No one with a sense of tradition and understanding of why they were doing it was against it.

As to "Physically manhandle a kid" I've seen some skits that have physical contact and 'manhadling" done at pack meetings. Heck, I had my Bears and seen Webelos doing some "manhandling" when teaching first aid skills at den meetings or day camp. One thing not required, but the Cubs had a blast doing it, was the stretcher carry.

And not everything about today is good either. I lament the fact that Boy Scouts cannot do pioneering projects over 6 feet tall, use carts for service projects unless 14,  have watergun fights in the middle of July at camp, etc.

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<sigh>
I try to be open minded but it makes my head hurt when people new to Scouting make judgements but they are ignorant of tradition, take things out of context and do not understand the legacy.
 
Anyway, to the topic at hand, I do not recall the “upside down Bobcat pinning” as a youth, so perhaps it was regional? As an adult, our pack had stopped the ceremony just before I became Cubmaster so I never saw it personally and my boys never saw it. However, I am told parents—not leaders—did the holding and pinning. The Webelos remembered it fondly, and younger brothers were upset the practice was discontinued because they felt cheated of an experience they looked forward to. I recall parents being upset too because they enjoyed the ceremony and it was a fun family tradition for families with several boys.
Edited by an_old_DC
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The tradition of turning new Cub Scouts upside down must have skipped over the packs I have been involved with, and perhaps my entire area.  I never even heard of it before I read (on the Internet) about it being banned.  So I wouldn't miss it even if I thought it was a good idea.

Which I don't.  It sounds like there is a more-than-negligible possibility of injury not to mention the interpersonal difficulties resulting from the few kids who don't want to do it.  And it does not advance any aim or method of Cub Scouting that I can see, with the possible exception of "fun" - and I'm not sure whether that is an official method.  It doesn't even sound like that much fun.  In our troop, at Courts of Honor the Scout who has earned a new rank pins the mother's pin on his mother upside down, and then it is to be turned right-side up when the Scout does a good deed.  That is enough upside-down for me.

In the other thread (I think) Barry said that not all "touching" by a leader is bad, specifically mentioning the "arm on the shoulder" to help a Scout get through a difficult situation.  I agree with that, especially since the SM and Scout are going to be within line-of-sight of other Scouts/Scouters in accordance with YP rules.  I'll bet that @WisconsinMomma would also agree with that.  I think she was really concerned about "manhandling," which is moot if it was the parents who were holding the Bobcat upside down.  I think the holding-upside-down was a tradition worth abandoning even if it was the parent doing the holding.

Edited by NJCubScouter

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I think fun should be an official method. Let's face it, not fun is not motivating to a scout.

But think a bit more about what is fun. Different strokes for different folks. This is a really important idea. Trying to treat every kid the same is a mistake. There are a lot of really outgoing and really quiet kids. Treating the quiet kids like they're outgoing could easily put them in an uncomfortable position. At the same time, treating the outgoing kids like they're quiet could put them to sleep. I've seen studies on how quiet kids are the way they are because everything stimulates them. The other side of this is that the really outgoing kids need more stimulation. Maybe the outgoing kids really benefit from being held upside down, just as the quiet kids might be over stimulated. So what should the adults do? Ask the kid! They'll give you an honest answer.

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There are many people who prefer that teachers, coaches, and scout leaders keep their hands off the kids. I don't think they are in the majority, but there are a significant number of them. 

I once worked in a special education program that had a strict no physical contact policy.  I thought it was odd, but I discovered that I didn't need to use physical contact in order to do my job. I could do just as well without it.

Over the past decade, my school has been incrementally heading in the direction of a no physical contact policy. We're not all the way there yet, but we're getting pretty darn close. 

I don't know if this is going to be the way of the future, or if the pendulum will eventually swing back to a more moderate position. 

Edited by David CO

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17 hours ago, WisconsinMomma said:

There is to reason to physically manhandle a kid at a Pack meeting and it's wrong. 

I am willing to listen to people who feel that we need a different policy on physical contact. I might even encourage the discussion. I like discussion.

That said, I think you are going to far when you say that it is wrong. 

 

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As an Arab American who feels that half of the country's problems stem from men unwilling to greet one another with a holy kiss, I'll comment no more.

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The kindergarten child that falls and skins their knee won't get any help getting up.  They have to do it on their own, while the teacher stands there and cheers them on in their endeavor with kind words like, "Suck it up, Sonny, and head on down to the Nurse's office."

No teacher hugs.....

No pat on the back for doing a good job....

No handshake at graduation...

No helping a little kid get up on the bus.

With individual rights being foremost in today's culture, individual isolationism is close on it's heels.

Some teacher is going to accidentally brush up against some kid in the crowded hallway and be sued for inappropriate "touching."  It's going to happen, just a matter of when.

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Let's keep on topic, adult touching in Scouting.

I have touched Scouts during skills instruction for swimming (swim stroke mechanics),  knots, shooting (postitioning, hold), and First Aid.  Oh I have grabbed and pulled some scouts away from a dangerous situation. Is there a problem?

Touching other the that, nope.  No hugs, no slaps, Scouts can play in the NFL for that. :)

 

Edited by RememberSchiff
safety

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