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21 hours ago, AVTech said:

The mission statement of the BSA has always said YOUTH, without mentioning gender.

That is correct, but to be clear the mission statement has not always been part of scouting canon, it is a product of the 60's or likely 70's.  There has not always been the feel good mission statement

Looking at the old school Scoutmaster Handbook (mine is 1938 printing) the emphasis is clearly on Boys.  What do Boys need.  How can the Scoutmaster make an impact in a Boys life.  What do Boys do and how do they interact and function in their gangs

No youth, only boys

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10 minutes ago, Jameson76 said:

That is correct, but to be clear the mission statement has not always been part of scouting canon, it is a product of the 60's or likely 70's.  There has not always been the feel good mission statement

Looking at the old school Scoutmaster Handbook (mine is 1938 printing) the emphasis is clearly on Boys.  What do Boys need.  How can the Scoutmaster make an impact in a Boys life.  What do Boys do and how do they interact and function in their gangs

No youth, only boys

That's open to interpretation. I often say "The boys are doing XYZ," or, "Let's get the boys going," or something along those lines just out of convenience (or laziness). It doesn't mean that I think only boys should be doing whatever it is I'm talking about. Nor does it mean that I can't just as easily adapt to saying "Scouts", "kids", or any other general descriptor. 

I suspect many Scouting materials have been written over the years with the same tone and for the same reason. It's easy to just say "boys", but it doesn't really tell us anything about any possible underlying intent of the person saying it. 

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3 minutes ago, FireStone said:

That's open to interpretation. I often say "The boys are doing XYZ," or, "Let's get the boys going," or something along those lines just out of convenience (or laziness). It doesn't mean that I think only boys should be doing whatever it is I'm talking about. Nor does it mean that I can't just as easily adapt to saying "Scouts", "kids", or any other general descriptor. 

I suspect many Scouting materials have been written over the years with the same tone and for the same reason. It's easy to just say "boys", but it doesn't really tell us anything about any possible underlying intent of the person saying it. 

Not disputing that the activities can be done by anyone of any gender.

That being said, the first sections of the older SM guides are clearly about boys, male youths.  The intent is to focus on the boys, and the program is interpreted and (at the time) designed for boys.  The discussion is about boys.

From the British - About the Boy Scouts Association - Royal Charter 1912

The aim of the Association is to develop good citizenship among boys by forming their character -- -training them in habits of observation, obedience, and self-reliance --- inculcating loyalty and thoughtfulness for others --- teaching them services useful to the public, and handicrafts useful to themselves --- promoting their physical, mental, and spiritual development.

From 1913 Scoutmaster Handbook - The ultimate Aim of Scouting

Aim to secure balanced, symmetrical activities for your patrols. Remember your Scout is four sided, that he is physical, mental, social and religious in his nature. Do not neglect any one side of him, but get the proper agencies to cooperate with you for these ends. Let the boys do what ever they can. Merely insist on adequate adult supervision. Above all be patient, practical and business like and remember that old heads never grow on young shoulders. The Scout Master should take his place in the community by the side of the teacher of secular and religious instruction. He is an educator and is dealing with the most plastic and most valuable asset in the community — boyhood. Let him take his task seriously, look upon his privilege with a desire to accomplish great things, and always remember that the good of the boys is his ultimate aim.

 

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5 minutes ago, Jameson76 said:

Not disputing that the activities can be done by anyone of any gender.

That being said, the first sections of the older SM guides are clearly about boys, male youths.  The intent is to focus on the boys, and the program is interpreted and (at the time) designed for boys.  The discussion is about boys.

From the British - About the Boy Scouts Association - Royal Charter 1912

The aim of the Association is to develop good citizenship among boys by forming their character -- -training them in habits of observation, obedience, and self-reliance --- inculcating loyalty and thoughtfulness for others --- teaching them services useful to the public, and handicrafts useful to themselves --- promoting their physical, mental, and spiritual development.

From 1913 Scoutmaster Handbook - The ultimate Aim of Scouting

Aim to secure balanced, symmetrical activities for your patrols. Remember your Scout is four sided, that he is physical, mental, social and religious in his nature. Do not neglect any one side of him, but get the proper agencies to cooperate with you for these ends. Let the boys do what ever they can. Merely insist on adequate adult supervision. Above all be patient, practical and business like and remember that old heads never grow on young shoulders. The Scout Master should take his place in the community by the side of the teacher of secular and religious instruction. He is an educator and is dealing with the most plastic and most valuable asset in the community — boyhood. Let him take his task seriously, look upon his privilege with a desire to accomplish great things, and always remember that the good of the boys is his ultimate aim.

 

The trouble is that the world has changed, beyond recognition, since those texts were written.

Two world wars, the rise and fall of Communism, man has been to the moon, universal suffrage, the admission of women to professions like law and medicine that wouldn't have been dreamed off 100 years ago, the internet. All these things have been massive changes to the world.

Someone from 1912 would probably struggle to recognise the planet if you brought them in a time machine to today. The same will probably be true if you were to find yourself in 2021.

Next month I will go to my cousin's wedding. She's 29 and a fully chartered accountant. She is finance director of the company she works for. Our joint late grandmother wanted to become an accountant when she was in her 20s, that was the 1930s, and she wasn't allowed simply because she was a woman. She had the necessary qualifications. It was simply being a woman.

I am not making a direct comparison with what was an outrageous piece of sexism and the argument that teenage boys and girls are different because there is no comparison. My point is that arguments about things being done a certain way in the early days so should continue to be done that way don't hold water because the world has moved on, massively.

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37 minutes ago, Cambridgeskip said:

I am not making a direct comparison with what was an outrageous piece of sexism and the argument that teenage boys and girls are different because there is no comparison. My point is that arguments about things being done a certain way in the early days so should continue to be done that way don't hold water because the world has moved on, massively.

There is a nuance to the discussion that is unfortunately been entirely missed and would have been very worthwhile. I wish we would have had time to discuss it but that is not the way the organization made the decision. At this point as the decision has been made (and rather poorly rolled out) all we can do is decide what we as individual and units are going to do. 

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33 minutes ago, Tampa Turtle said:

There is a nuance to the discussion that is unfortunately been entirely missed and would have been very worthwhile. I wish we would have had time to discuss it but that is not the way the organization made the decision. At this point as the decision has been made (and rather poorly rolled out) all we can do is decide what we as individual and units are going to do. 

Pretty sure poorly rolled out is an understatement

With each "Big Announcement" (no doubt prepared by the the well paid PR team) there come out multiple clarifying statements.  

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1 hour ago, Cambridgeskip said:

Someone from 1912 would probably struggle to recognise the planet if you brought them in a time machine to today. The same will probably be true if you were to find yourself in 2021.

I don't think 2021 was the year you were looking for.  That's 3 years from now.   :)

But I mostly agree with the rest of your post.  The fact that "the world has changed" doesn't necessarily mean that any particular change is justified.  But it also is not enough, in opposing a particular change, to say that that isn't the way it was done 100 years ago.  The question is, what will be the effect NOW?  And based on that, I have said in the past that my preference was to have boys be Boy Scouts and girls be Girl Scouts, with the Girl Scouts doing much more to make sure that their outdoor program (which does exist) is actually being delivered on the local level, which it often isn't.  But here we are, and we each have to decide individually how we're going to deal with it.

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3 minutes ago, Jameson76 said:

With each "Big Announcement" (no doubt prepared by the the well paid PR team) there come out multiple clarifying statements.  

Wait... we're still talking about the BSA and not other current events, right?  :D

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1 hour ago, Jameson76 said:

Not disputing that the activities can be done by anyone of any gender.

That being said, the first sections of the older SM guides are clearly about boys, male youths.  The intent is to focus on the boys, and the program is interpreted and (at the time) designed for boys.  The discussion is about boys.

 

*psst* Someone might point out that our country was also once founded on the idea that only white males mattered too but then we evolved. Might want to make sure the reason you are relying on a 100 year old gender-based exclusion is sound and is still valid.

With women now being active in all military units, my theory is that if BP were alive today and starting Scouts in 2018, he would do it much more like it will be in 2019 than what it was like in 1910.

Edited by Hawkwin
added a missing word
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4 minutes ago, Hawkwin said:

*psst* Someone might point out that our country was also once founded on the idea that only white males mattered too but then we evolved. Might want to make sure the reason you are relying on a 100 year old gender-based exclusion is sound is still valid.

With women now being active in all military units, my theory is that if BP were alive today and starting Scouts in 2018, he would do it much more like it will be in 2019 than what it was like in 1910.

 Grow tired of misinformation such as the above.  Quit stating opinion as fact 

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5 minutes ago, NJCubScouter said:

I don't think 2021 was the year you were looking for.  That's 3 years from now.   :)

But I mostly agree with the rest of your post.  The fact that "the world has changed" doesn't necessarily mean that any particular change is justified.  But it also is not enough, in opposing a particular change, to say that that isn't the way it was done 100 years ago.  The question is, what will be the effect NOW?  And based on that, I have said in the past that my preference was to have boys be Boy Scouts and girls be Girl Scouts, with the Girl Scouts doing much more to make sure that their outdoor program (which does exist) is actually being delivered on the local level, which it often isn't.  But here we are, and we each have to decide individually how we're going to deal with it.

 

1 minute ago, Hawkwin said:

*psst* Someone might point out that our country was also once founded on the idea that only white males mattered too but then we evolved. Might want to make sure the reason you are relying on a 100 year old gender-based exclusion is sound is still valid.

With women now being active in all military units, my theory is that if BP were alive today and starting Scouts in 2018, he would do it much more like it will be in 2019 than what it was like in 1910.

I wouldn't be too sure. There were a lot of rumors about political pressure making it possible for women to graduate from Ranger School. BP was a veteran and a gentleman. I think he would see the value in single-gender scouting.  As for myself, I can't see me giving a scoutmaster minute to girls about treating women and girls with respect.

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1 minute ago, jamskinner said:

 Grow tired of misinformation such as the above.  Quit stating opinion as fact 

What misinformation?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Voting_rights_in_the_United_States

The United States Constitution did not originally define who was eligible to vote, allowing each state to determine who was eligible. In the early history of the U.S., most states allowed only white male adult property owners to vote.

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

If you can't vote, then you don't really matter.

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1 minute ago, Saltface said:

 

I wouldn't be too sure.

Well, I did state it was a theory. :)

It seems like it would be weird if BP had served on active duty in the British military with women fighting beside him to then make it the rest of his life mission to create a youth organization that excluded them.

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2 hours ago, Jameson76 said:

Not disputing that the activities can be done by anyone of any gender.

That being said, the first sections of the older SM guides are clearly about boys, male youths.  The intent is to focus on the boys, and the program is interpreted and (at the time) designed for boys.  The discussion is about boys.

From the British - About the Boy Scouts Association - Royal Charter 1912

The aim of the Association is to develop good citizenship among boys by forming their character -- -training them in habits of observation, obedience, and self-reliance --- inculcating loyalty and thoughtfulness for others --- teaching them services useful to the public, and handicrafts useful to themselves --- promoting their physical, mental, and spiritual development.

From 1913 Scoutmaster Handbook - The ultimate Aim of Scouting

Aim to secure balanced, symmetrical activities for your patrols. Remember your Scout is four sided, that he is physical, mental, social and religious in his nature. Do not neglect any one side of him, but get the proper agencies to cooperate with you for these ends. Let the boys do what ever they can. Merely insist on adequate adult supervision. Above all be patient, practical and business like and remember that old heads never grow on young shoulders. The Scout Master should take his place in the community by the side of the teacher of secular and religious instruction. He is an educator and is dealing with the most plastic and most valuable asset in the community — boyhood. Let him take his task seriously, look upon his privilege with a desire to accomplish great things, and always remember that the good of the boys is his ultimate aim.

 

I'm still not convinced that any of this was written with any less casual a tone than how I use the word "boys" in my Den and Pack. Swap out "boy" and "boyhood" for "child" and "childhood" and it all still works. 

Someone could show up at my next Den meeting and make the same inferences, that based on the language I use, my program is designed only for boys. In reality, I just have some early habits with how I address a group of Scouts that I will need to evolve out of now. It's not an indication of programatic intent. 

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5 minutes ago, Saltface said:

As for myself, I can't see me giving a scoutmaster minute to girls about treating women and girls with respect.

There is no requirement under this new system that male and female "Scouts BSA" be in the same meeting at all times.  In fact there is no requirement that they EVER be in the same meeting - that's an option, not a requirement.  You can have that kind of talk with the boys alone (though personally I would add having respect for themselves as well), and the female SM or ASM of the female "linked troop" can have the talk with the girls about having respect for themselves, and boys and men.

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