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Gwaihir

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

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10 hours ago, desertrat77 said:

Boy Scout Handbook, Seventh Edition, Seventh Printing, January 1971, page 39:

"A Scout is TRUSTWORTHY"

"A Scout's honor is to be trusted.  If he were to violate his honor by telling a lie or by cheating or by not doing exactly a given task, when trusted on his honor, he may be directed to hand over his Scout badge."

Well, you can imagine how society would react today if a scout was directed to turn in his scout badge.  For any reason. 

For some, lectures and encouraging words don't have much impact.  Stronger consequences are sometimes needed to change behavior.  Cutting off that corner, or, back in the day, turning in a badge--that might be the day the scout reconsiders his actions.  And changes his life for the better.

 

...And in front of the troop.

 

 

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Well, I honestly thought this topic had died a natural death but then someone asked me a question and I felt it would be discourteous to not respond.

I will try to clarify my position one last time and then let the thread go into the ether. Besides, this entire thread (and my participating starting on page 3) is based entirely on hearsay from the OP. We don't know if any of this is even valid.

Most of the arguments in support of cutting the corner have relied on various subjective reasoning. If each scouter can subjectively decide what is or is not hazing/bullying, then we have no real standard - and it is wide open to abuse. If one scouter thinks it is OK because the card cost $0.19 but would object if the cost was $5, where as a different scouter would not object until the cost was $10, then we again have a subjective standard where by it will be considered inappropriate by some and OK by others. I again prefer a more objective standard when it comes to things as serious as a potential violation of YPT. If scouters of good conscience can't agree on a standard that would be "too much" then the best and only objective standard is "not at all."

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21 hours ago, Hawkwin said:

The cost of the card is a Red Herring. Would you change your position if the card cost $200? If you would, then you have to admit that cutting a corner is still not proper, regardless of the cost.

As stated up thread, cutting a corner is unnecessary and does not accomplishing anything on its own. As you illustrate, you still have to have a conversation. Can you cut the card and walk away, assuming you did your job? Could you have a conversation without cutting the card and have a different result? Perhaps cutting the card doesn't accomplish what you think it does if you can't do only that and get the same result.

I also don't see any relevance to knowing whether or not a scout, now 17, may have used a knife in an unsafe manner when they were 11. We don't care if a scout, at age 17, violated some aspect of safe swim defense when they were 11 as long as they behave correctly now. I can't think of any other practice in BSA that results in the damage - even as something as minor as cutting a corner - of a scouts personal property. Confiscation, yes. Damage, no.

Flip the question around, why are you so for it? What do you think would happen if you still had the same conversation but without cutting a corner? And why stop at a corner? If minor damage of scout property is such an effective means of corrective action and re-education, why not patches? Toss trash on the ground, get the bottom quarter of your Outdoor Ethics patch cut off. Get caught not being Reverent, cut off the left quarter of your religious emblem.

At some point, most scouters would likely object to the damage or destruction of such property and if you object to one, how can you allow another - on such subjective grounds as cost? If $0.19 is OK, what amount isn't? At what cost does something become hazing or bullying?

I'd be ok with the $200 card being cut.  However, that would raise unit dues quite a bit.  

The relevance of a physical action like cutting corners is that people are physical beings.  Why even give out a card if physical things are not important?  I could agree with a practice of marking the card, but the point of cutting the corner is so that all adults involved know that something happened.  When I was an ASM, I might not know everythign that happened at the last campout.  If I were to find a boy misusing a knife,  I could instantly know if he had done a knife infraction before.  I still don't see what the big deal is.  I think we have adults being snowflakes on the issue. This is not hazing. It may not be a practice you don't agree with, but it comes nowhere close to the definition of hazing.  

 

The legal definition of hazing in my home state, Florida (as found in stophazing.org):

Quote

1006.135 Hazing prohibited at schools with any of grades 6-12.—

(1) DEFINITION.—As used in this section, “hazing” means any action or situation that endangers the mental or physical health or safety of a student at a school with any of grades 6 through 12 for purposes including, but not limited to, initiation or admission into or affiliation with any organization operating under the sanction of a school with any of grades 6 through 12. “Hazing” includes, but is not limited to:

(a) Pressuring, coercing, or forcing a student into:

1. Violating state or federal law;

2. Consuming any food, liquor, drug, or other substance; or

3. Participating in physical activity that could adversely affect the health or safety of the student.

(b) Any brutality of a physical nature, such as whipping, beating, branding, or exposure to the elements.
Hazing does not include customary athletic events or other similar contests or competitions or any activity or conduct that furthers a legal and legitimate objective.

 

https://www.stophazing.org/florida/

 

I can see how you could outlaw cutting corners as a practice based on other issues. but hazing it is not.  

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1 hour ago, perdidochas said:

I'd be ok with the $200 card being cut.  However, that would raise unit dues quite a bit. 

Oooh, but maybe if it's a chip card with bluetooth! Without even taking it out of the scout's pocket, it could automatically retract a corner, then update Scoutbook accordingly. Once all four corners are retracted, it would sense when Johnny is approaching a blade and send a push notification to the nearest leader.

"Warning! Warning! A scout in your vicinity must report to re-training immediately!

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3 hours ago, Hawkwin said:

If scouters of good conscience can't agree on a standard that would be "too much" then the best and only objective standard is "not at all."

In my experience, scouters can't agree on anything. If we required agreement, nothing would get done.

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3 hours ago, Hawkwin said:

If scouters of good conscience can't agree on a standard that would be "too much" then the best and only objective standard is "not at all."

One could very easily use the same reasoning to reach an opposite conclusion. If scouters of good conscience can't agree on what hazing is, then we shouldn't have any hazing rules at all.

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4 hours ago, Hawkwin said:

Well, I honestly thought this topic had died a natural death but then someone asked me a question and I felt it would be discourteous to not respond.

I will try to clarify my position one last time and then let the thread go into the ether. Besides, this entire thread (and my participating starting on page 3) is based entirely on hearsay from the OP. We don't know if any of this is even valid.

Most of the arguments in support of cutting the corner have relied on various subjective reasoning. If each scouter can subjectively decide what is or is not hazing/bullying, then we have no real standard - and it is wide open to abuse. If one scouter thinks it is OK because the card cost $0.19 but would object if the cost was $5, where as a different scouter would not object until the cost was $10, then we again have a subjective standard where by it will be considered inappropriate by some and OK by others. I again prefer a more objective standard when it comes to things as serious as a potential violation of YPT. If scouters of good conscience can't agree on a standard that would be "too much" then the best and only objective standard is "not at all."

your entire premise is based on your stance being proven verifiable fact.  Show me the evidence that a decades old practice has no basis for being effective. 

Also, someone posted material from the BALOO training manual that corner cutting on Whittling Chip is not allowed, so this isn't hearsay. 

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41 minutes ago, Gwaihir said:

Show me the evidence that a decades old practice has no basis for being effective. 

Only because I keep getting asked direct questions... :)

I asked for evidence in this thread that cutting a corner was effective. I asked multiple times if scouters thought that cutting a corner, in and of itself, was sufficient in teaching responsibility and/or correcting behavior. I don't think anyone replied in the affirmative. In every case, from what I recall, there was also the requirement to have a conversation with the scout. My theory is that it is the conversation, the interaction with an adult leader, that results in the change of behavior, not the corner being cut. As such, cut corners is neither necessary nor helpful and can be seen by some as either hazing or bulling.

45 minutes ago, Gwaihir said:

Also, someone posted material from the BALOO training manual that corner cutting on Whittling Chip is not allowed, so this isn't hearsay. 

That was me. The hearsay was the fact that you started this thread by stating someone from the council said it also applies to the Totin Chip. We can't substantiate that claim currently but it would not surprise me since it is already prohibited for one type of card.

Lastly, but in a desire to not simply use an appeal to authority argument, it does appear both from my quote and you hearing from your council that this is a practice that is not supported by BSA. Perhaps it really isn't all about me and my lil ole opinion but more significant negative feedback BSA has received on this topic that lead to this decision. I really don't think they would move from a position of "no comment" in 2013 to a position of "no more" in 2017 if there was not a reason for it. Everyone posting that they don't see any harm in it doesn't change that fact.

What I don't get is if we can agree that it is already a banned practice for the Whittling Chip, why is it so outrageous that we would prohibit it for the Totin Chip?

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11 minutes ago, Hawkwin said:

What I don't get is if we can agree that it is already a banned practice for the Whittling Chip, why is it so outrageous that we would prohibit it for the Totin Chip?

For sort of the same reason that I'm on point when cubs want a campfire, but prefer to nap while scouts are lighting fires.

Whittling Chip assumes there is an environment of immediate adult supervision (sort of like when a dad is holding a power drill for a Bear scout properly goggled).

The Boy Scout certifications assume there is an environment of youth leadership that may be patchy at times (sort of like a PL going off to play catch while a couple of his designees are still cleaning up dishes). The cards/buddy tags help leaders communicate. Communication helps discipline. Discipline helps learning. That's why BSA's official stance on them is that the Scout’s [totin; firem'n, and we may include swimming] rights can be taken from him if he fails in his responsibility.

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39 minutes ago, qwazse said:

That's why BSA's official stance on them is that the Scout’s [totin; firem'n, and we may include swimming] rights can be taken from him if he fails in his responsibility.

Did you miss the part where the Whittling Chip can also be revoked? I will note that BSA official stance for the Totin IS NOT, "You may cut off the corner for an infraction." Perhaps the absence of that language is intentional?

https://www.scribd.com/document/361593410/510-033-17-BALOO

If the Cub Scout does not follow the rules as taught and as listed on the Whittling Chip card, the Whittling Chip will be revoked, no exceptions!• There is no such thing as “cutting a corner off” for infractions. The rules are followed at all times. The Whittling Chip card stays as a complete unit.

What is the rational for such an explicit prohibition?

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Because previous guidance from the BSA on the Totin' Chip is:

"This is a decision for troop leaders, and I’d recommend including your senior patrol leader in the discussion as well. Set a standard, and enforce it. "

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

Cub Scouts are not Boy Scouts.  The guidance does not have to be the same for both age groups.  Cutting corners can be an effective communication tool to issue warnings for minor infractions.  Different troops can have different policies.

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Mind = Blown. :o Serves me right for getting my info from https://www.scouting.org/awards/awards-central/whittling-chip/,

6 hours ago, Hawkwin said:

Did you miss the part where the Whittling Chip can also be revoked? I will note that BSA official stance for the Totin IS NOT, "You may cut off the corner for an infraction." Perhaps the absence of that language is intentional?

https://www.scribd.com/document/361593410/510-033-17-BALOO

If the Cub Scout does not follow the rules as taught and as listed on the Whittling Chip card, the Whittling Chip will be revoked, no exceptions!• There is no such thing as “cutting a corner off” for infractions. The rules are followed at all times. The Whittling Chip card stays as a complete unit.

What is the rational for such an explicit prohibition?

I had no idea BALOO insisted on a wholesale confiscation of a cub's card. No merciful clips. No warnings. No temporary suspensions. Just cruel zero tolerance.

OH THE HUMANITY:eek:

I think I understand why @Gwaihir's instructor got it wrong. He/she thought that the consequences for violating the Whittling Chip contract would, by virtue of being cubs, be the least traumatic. But. the opposite is the case. With bunches of young cubs, and typically shorter terms in camp, you don't have time or youth leadership to coach self discipline. Moreover, a lacerated cub is more traumatic risk. Therefore, you don't have the luxury of giving each scout four chances. Boy scouts have markedly more time in camp, and a greater need to work with cutting tools. So, leadership has the latitude for and need to offer second/third and fourth chances by only removing leaving a scout with 96% of a card after the first infarction.

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8 minutes ago, qwazse said:

 

I had no idea BALOO insisted on a wholesale confiscation of a cub's card. No merciful clips. No warnings. No temporary suspensions. Just cruel zero tolerance.

OH THE HUMANITY:eek:

 

Yikes! 

 

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6 hours ago, qwazse said:

I had no idea BALOO insisted on a wholesale confiscation of a cub's card. No merciful clips. No warnings. No temporary suspensions. Just cruel zero tolerance.

OH THE HUMANITY:eek:

I believe there is also waterboarding involved to fully drive home the error of their ways, though I may have misread that part

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58 minutes ago, Jameson76 said:

I believe there is also waterboarding involved to fully drive home the error of their ways, though I may have misread that part

That is why I prefer just cutting the corner, to spare the scout the indignity of the march up to the Scoutmaster in front of the Troop, the long drum roll, and the slapping of the cheeks three times with the confiscated card. 

Don't get me started on the traditional OA punishments for flaming arrow abuse.

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