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Gwaihir

New YPT declares corner ripping for Totin Chip/Whittlin Chip as Hazing?

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It is not "Hazing" if done properly and if the result is expected.  Every government agency, every company or organization big enough to be concerned about public performance or safety and accidents has standards of behavior, and consequences for not following those standards.

Cause an accident? Neglect a responsibility?  Reprimand in file, day(s) off work , forfeited annual leave,,,,  

Every state requires standards of behavior to drive a car, a truck, own a gun,  practice medicine.  Fail to follow those standards,   lose something....

Throw a knife? Drop an axe?   Threaten another human with a sharp tool?   Lose a privilege.   In the Adult World,  it is called "Progressive Discipline".   It is not hazing.  BUT>>>

Requiring a Scout to sing, IN PUBLIC, to HUMILIATE himself IN PUBLIC to regain his/her property, that is hazing....

PRAISE in public,    DISCIPLINE, COUNSEL, ADVISE in private..... 

Scouts will emulate, copy, expect what they see their adult leaders do. They will copy, emulate, try to outdo, pass on ("well, he did it to me....")  what they see,  hear,  from their SPL, ASPL,   PL....

SO,  DO AS I SAY< NOT AS I DO ?   I don't think so.   

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45 minutes ago, blw2 said:

yeah, I never bought into the corner cutting thing either.  They earned the card or they didn't.  Don't make up requirements.

... so, maybe the PL's corner should be cut because one of his boys failed to continue to show mastery?

As far as requirements, ( from https://www.scouting.org/programs/boy-scouts/advancement-and-awards/merit-badges/totin/ emphasis mine)

Quote

The Scout must show his Scout leader, or someone designated by his leader, that he understands his responsibility ... {requirements/responsibilities listed} ... The Scout’s “Totin’ Rights”

can be taken from him if he fails in his responsibility.

So, clipping of corners is a way of adhering to the intent of the card. It symbolizes Totin' Rights being whittled away. It should be done quietly, with assurances that you (SPL/PL/SM) believe he is capable of behaving according to the what he claimed he understood to be how he should behave ... that this is a way of helping him prepare behave safely and responsibly.

But, Totin' Rights removal alternatives to this form of nano-hazing (pico-hazing?) could also be:

  • Take the whole card. Hang it in a public location for a day.
  • Leave the card. Take the cutting implements. Return them after the scout retrieves his card and reads it publicly.
  • Paint a scarlet "T" on scouts forehead, so that all will know to keep implements of tote from him.
  • Saw a large stump, stick card on it, mount it sideways at 10 paces, hold axe-throwing contest. First scout to sharpen ax well enough to split card at that distance, gets another card.
Edited by qwazse
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A lot of hysteria over the OP hearsay.

This is a safety issue. We occasionally tear corners of a Totin Chip card but more frequently we immediately take away the object that is not being used safely and that intervention  is not deterred by the presence of others.

No songs, rather retraining.

This is made clear to parents so we are all on the same page.

My $0.02

 

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2 hours ago, qwazse said:

 

But, Totin' Rights removal alternatives to this form of nano-hazing (pico-hazing?) could also be:

  • Take the whole card. Hang it in a public location for a day.
  • Leave the card. Take the cutting implements. Return them after the scout retrieves his card and reads it publicly.
  • Paint a scarlet "T" on scouts forehead, so that all will know to keep implements of tote from him.
  • Saw a large stump, stick card on it, mount it sideways at 10 paces, hold axe-throwing contest. First scout to sharpen ax well enough to split card at that distance, gets another card.

What about taking the card and holding it until the Scout re-qualifies for the card by doing all the requirements again?  Why does there have to be any form of hazing at all?  

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6 hours ago, David CO said:

We would have shown him the door and invited him to find another unit. The SM is in charge. Nobody disrespects the SM.

 

When the lawyer is a member of the church that sponsors you and does a lot of pro-bono work for that church, you say "Sorry sir, it won't happen again".

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59 minutes ago, CalicoPenn said:

When the lawyer is a member of the church that sponsors you and does a lot of pro-bono work for that church, you say "Sorry sir, it won't happen again".

We don't make unit policy that way.

This sort of stuff is nothing new. There have always been pushy people who try to throw their weight around. It not only happen is scouting, it happens in sports programs too. In fact, it happens a lot more often in sports programs.

A scout unit needs to have a IH and COR who aren't pushovers for that sort of thing.

 

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From 2013:

Ask the Expert: Is cutting corners off the Totin’ Chip allowed?

https://blog.scoutingmagazine.org/2013/08/13/ask-the-expert-is-cutting-corners-off-the-totin-chip-allowed/

Note the first comment:

Well looks like for Cub Scouts, Cutting Corners from the Whittling Chip is now forbidden. Page 69 of the 2017 BALOO Syllabus states:

"Describe how the Whittling Chip, if revoked, must be re-earned as a complete unit in order to again carry and use a pocketknife. The corners cannot be cut off from the Whittling Chip for infractions—the certificate must be treated as a single entity."

-------------------------

I would think that any action that leaves the card permanently damaged both unnecessary and probably a form of hazing. Once the scout has completed the actions necessary to earn the privilege to have a knife again, the card will still bear the cut. A cub scout version of a scarlet letter for a past infraction.

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Hazing

I say again,  if safe behavior is in question, if poor choice of behavior is observed,  the PL, or SPL, or APL,  or the adult nearby needs to step in, CAREFULLY remove the tool involved, and take the Scout aside , and "Courteously" explain what is wrong.  If deemed necessary, indeed ask for his/her Totin' Chip or Whitlin' Chit card.   Any policeman observing really unsafe driving will remove the license from the driver.  How is the Scout world different? Those cards are the Scout's "License" to use the tool, yes?    If you lose your driver license from poor choice of behavior , how do you regain it?   By following the law, and perhaps taking some "Safe Driver" training.  Can it not be the same thing here?   

Probation?  That is the means to prove, by good subsequent behavior, that one is worthy of the trust involved with "owning" a license.  Can this not be the same with the Chips?  

Hazing is wrong and counterproductive. Public humiliation does not teach good behavior, it only creates anger and resentment .  What behavior would you favor the Scout copy?  Semi-bullying ? Or asking him/her to live UP to your standards?   

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We seem to have two threads running simultaneously here. One is cutting corners which in my mind is like a policeman pulling you over and giving you a point or two for speeding. Where is taking the entire card is like pulling your license for reckless or drunk and driving.

On the subject of singing for something lost it has to actually be carelessly lost, not just on a table for a moment with every intention  or retreving said object.

Heck, they made me do it when I left my Scout jacket at a function because had a sick Scout to get home.  the scouts gleefully picked it up and told me I had to sing Itsy Bitsy Spider if I wanted it back. I just been with me for many a year and has patches on it nearly 50 years old I have no compunction about singing a small song to get it back I didn't consider to be degrading or humiliating.  one Scout some years ago was asked to sing I'm a Little Teapot he protested he didn't know the words he never heard the song. In today Society I quite believe it so his whole Patrol came out stood next to him and sang the song for him all 7 of them and he got his stuff back. He found out he had several friends that day who would come to his Aid when needed and the whole troop gave him a standing ovation. 

Let us not paint with too broad a brush.

Can singing a little song be construed as hazing?  I guess it could be micro-hazing (although I'm not at all sure I am ready to concede such a thing exists) , but I remember all to well real hazing and attempted hazings that left kids bleeding and bruised.  If any good came out of that I utterly missed seeing it.

I'm not trying to imply that everyone is turning into a fragile snowflake, but the world is a hard place sonetimes, I don't think we serve the scouts by keeping them enveloped in bubblewrap.

 

 

 

Edited by Oldscout448

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10 hours ago, Hawkwin said:

... Well looks like for Cub Scouts, Cutting Corners from the Whittling Chip is now forbidden. ....

I would think that any action that leaves the card permanently damaged both unnecessary and probably a form of hazing. Once the scout has completed the actions necessary to earn the privilege to have a knife again, the card will still bear the cut. A cub scout version of a scarlet letter for a past infraction.

1. Cub scouts is not Boy Scouts. Nor is Whittling Totin'. But, this may be @Gwaihir's instructor's source of confusion. The privilege of greater accountability comes with moving up in the big leagues.

2. It's a card. In a kid's pocket (hopefully in a wallet :eek:).  It's likely to not survive the boy's tenure. If he damages it, should we call him out for hazing himself? Not every negative action is hazing.

3. We are not interested in collecting/sequestering knives and axes. We want scouts to hold onto them and keep working with them, making the world a better place in the process.

4. Some people see permanent damage. Others personal growth.

The thing about those clipped corners? Scouts actually look at cards and compare how they've been cut. In looking at them, they sometimes read what's on them.

BTW - after the first summer camp, I rarely see boys commit safety violations. (The catapult lofting empty water bottles at my tent being a rare, and admirable, exception.) I keep an open offer to replace any cut cards with whole ones. So far no takers.

Edited by qwazse
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10 hours ago, Hawkwin said:

From 2013:

Ask the Expert: Is cutting corners off the Totin’ Chip allowed?

https://blog.scoutingmagazine.org/2013/08/13/ask-the-expert-is-cutting-corners-off-the-totin-chip-allowed/

Note the first comment:

Well looks like for Cub Scouts, Cutting Corners from the Whittling Chip is now forbidden. Page 69 of the 2017 BALOO Syllabus states:

"Describe how the Whittling Chip, if revoked, must be re-earned as a complete unit in order to again carry and use a pocketknife. The corners cannot be cut off from the Whittling Chip for infractions—the certificate must be treated as a single entity."

-------------------------

I would think that any action that leaves the card permanently damaged both unnecessary and probably a form of hazing. Once the scout has completed the actions necessary to earn the privilege to have a knife again, the card will still bear the cut. A cub scout version of a scarlet letter for a past infraction.

Considering I know who wrote that comment on the blog and heard him talk about it, I can tell you it was made to show how BSA policies and literature is constantly changing,  contradictory and confusing. One BSA official document, Bryan's Blog, is NOT stating that  the practice of cutting corners of TOTIN" CHIP ( emphasis) is being denied.  And many Packs use those policies in absence of specific Cub Scout ones, or to help Webelos transition to Boy Scouts. But then a change is made in another BSA document, 2017 BALOO Syllabus, stating that you cannot cut corners on Whittling Chip. 

As a former trainer, I can see where all these constant changes can cause confusion, especially for former Cub Scout leaders who are now Boy Scouters and are still following Cub Scout policies and not Boy Scout policies. I just checked out the current ITOLS syllabus, and no prohibition on cutting corners is in there.

Regarding cutting corners as a form of hazing, please explain to me how talking to a Scout about a minor infraction and cutting a corner to serve as a reminder to do better is hazing? I admit singing for lost items is pushing it IMHO, but anyone who has been a pledge for a fraternity/sorority knows what hazing truly is. Anyone who has been to a service academy, or been through boot camp knows what hazing truly is. 

Cutting corners is not hazing.

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9 hours ago, SSScout said:

Hazing

I say again,  if safe behavior is in question, if poor choice of behavior is observed,  the PL, or SPL, or APL,  or the adult nearby needs to step in, CAREFULLY remove the tool involved, and take the Scout aside , and "Courteously" explain what is wrong.  If deemed necessary, indeed ask for his/her Totin' Chip or Whitlin' Chit card.   Any policeman observing really unsafe driving will remove the license from the driver.  How is the Scout world different? Those cards are the Scout's "License" to use the tool, yes?    If you lose your driver license from poor choice of behavior , how do you regain it?   By following the law, and perhaps taking some "Safe Driver" training.  Can it not be the same thing here?   

Probation?  That is the means to prove, by good subsequent behavior, that one is worthy of the trust involved with "owning" a license.  Can this not be the same with the Chips?  

Hazing is wrong and counterproductive. Public humiliation does not teach good behavior, it only creates anger and resentment .  What behavior would you favor the Scout copy?  Semi-bullying ? Or asking him/her to live UP to your standards?   

If you get a ticket for reckless driving or speeding, you get points on your license.  Enough negative points and then you lose your license.  Getting points on your license is the exact same thing as getting corners taken off your totin' chip card (and used to be Whittlin' chip card too).  

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16 minutes ago, Eagle94-A1 said:

Considering I know who wrote that comment on the blog and heard him talk about it, I can tell you it was made to show how BSA policies and literature is constantly changing,  contradictory and confusing. One BSA official document, Bryan's Blog, is NOT stating that  the practice of cutting corners of TOTIN" CHIP ( emphasis) is being denied.  And many Packs use those policies in absence of specific Cub Scout ones, or to help Webelos transition to Boy Scouts. But then a change is made in another BSA document, 2017 BALOO Syllabus, stating that you cannot cut corners on Whittling Chip. 

As a former trainer, I can see where all these constant changes can cause confusion, especially for former Cub Scout leaders who are now Boy Scouters and are still following Cub Scout policies and not Boy Scout policies. I just checked out the current ITOLS syllabus, and no prohibition on cutting corners is in there.

Regarding cutting corners as a form of hazing, please explain to me how talking to a Scout about a minor infraction and cutting a corner to serve as a reminder to do better is hazing? I admit singing for lost items is pushing it IMHO, but anyone who has been a pledge for a fraternity/sorority knows what hazing truly is. Anyone who has been to a service academy, or been through boot camp knows what hazing truly is. 

Cutting corners is not hazing.

Better a cut corner than a knife wound. Better a hurt feeling than a hurt hand. Not saying there may be better things to use in your correctional bag of tricks but there are times you need to make an impression. Knives and fires are not toys and there are real physical consequences to their misuse.

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9 hours ago, Oldscout448 said:

We seem to have two threads running simultaneously here. One is cutting corners which in my mind is like a policeman pulling you over and giving you a point or two for speeding. Where is taking the entire card is like pulling your license for reckless or drunk and driving.

Why isn't cutting the corner of your chip more like the police officer cutting the corner of your license? A point or two for speeding eventually goes away. You never regain the corner of you chip.

1 hour ago, Eagle94-A1 said:

Regarding cutting corners as a form of hazing, please explain to me how talking to a Scout about a minor infraction and cutting a corner to serve as a reminder to do better is hazing?

Because it is permanent. What other "punishment" or corrective action do we take in BSA that leaves a permanent mark? You can never regain that cut corner. It builds resentment and does nothing, on its own, to teach better skills. Cutting the corner of a card is as an effective method of corrective action as making someone sing for their stuff back.

In thinking about this, I considered other "inappropriate usage" violations my scouts might have at home. If my scout was using their tablet or their PS4 inappropriately, I would not take out a knife and permanently damage their tablet or their PS4 controller as a constant and permanent reminder of previous transgressions. I would take away their usage until they could demonstrate that they can use such items appropriately. Cutting the corner feels almost like we hold a multi-year grudge against them.

My son has a bow. If I saw him use it in an unsafe manner, I would take it away from him and not permit him to use it until he demonstrates he can consistently use it safely. I would not take out a knife and cut some permanent mark on the riser that would be a constant reminder to him in future years that he was previously irresponsible when he was younger.

What do we cut off the scout(er) that accidentally violates the YPT? ;)

What do we say to the scout that catches an adult doing something wrong or incorrect when they ask us what they get to cut off of ours?

1 hour ago, Eagle94-A1 said:

but anyone who has been a pledge for a fraternity/sorority knows what hazing truly is. Anyone who has been to a service academy, or been through boot camp knows what hazing truly is. 

I've been in two frats and through Army Airborne boot camp (which was easy compared to the treatment I received at my actual Airborne Infantry unit) and while I would agree that there are certainly worse forms of hazing but also know that the severity of one doesn't invalidate the other.

Edited by Hawkwin
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22 hours ago, Gwaihir said:

Real lesson learned 2.0: Lawyers ruin everything.  No offense @NJCubScouter

I would have a real problem if I took offense at every jab against lawyers in this forum - or in real life.  :)

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