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What's in a name?

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1 hour ago, John-in-KC said:

Did you post this on bookface in the WB group?

Guilty as charged.  Quite a conversation, eh? 

 

Girl Troopers?   Boy Troopers?  

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Male or Female, I'm going to refer to Scouts that are ages 11-17  "Scouts." Just like I have since I became an adult leader. I don't have a problem with referring to it as Scouts BSA if that's what the BSA wants it to be called, but otherwise I plan to refer to the program for 11-17 year olds as "Boy Scouts." If there are girls involved, I'm calling it "Scouts" or "Scouting" or "Scouts BSA." 

I've effectively "retired" from my Troop, but we're staying all Boys. We have no intention to start a Girls Troop. So for us, it's remaining "Boy Scouts." We'll refer any interested girls to a troop in town that has a very successful venturing crew and is starting a girls troop. To start our own at this juncture might simply cripple both groups. Our troop leadership wishes the other troop starting a girls unit great success. 

Edited by Sentinel947

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15 hours ago, shortridge said:

If you feel you can speak for them - why did they feel this way? Why do they see a girls’ troop as an issue to overcome? What impact did they see a girls’ troop having on their Scouting experience?

Not knowing Monkeytamers son I cannot speak for him or his friends. 

   But more than a few older scouts that I do know are also planning on leaving or have already departed.   It does not seem that it is so much an issue with girls troops as much as the boys feel that the troop belongs to them.    they have spent a third of their life in it after all.  They deeply resent National changing its membership, its focus, its very name.   They have no voice, no platform, so they vote with the only means left to them. Their feet.

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23 hours ago, Monkeytamer said:

Not to quibble, but it is still "Boy Scouts" until the end of the month.  I know that seems like semantics, but it is an important distinction to a small number of highly interested Boy Scouts, one of whom is my youngest son.  See, last year when all of this began, it lit a fire under him and his classmates.  All of them decided that they wanted no part in any of it.  They came to me and asked if we would help them get out under the wire.  Now, my son is the second oldest in the group and turns 18 in April anyway.  So he was already going to need to get in gear during this time, but the rest of his class of juniors (there are eight of them in his group still in scouts) all became highly motivated, even though some of them still have a year.

They all worked hard and wrapped up their merit badges.  We helped them navigate the Eagle process and they all sat for their initial BORs in November or December.  They spent Christmas break helping each other with their Eagle projects, which are all solid projects mind you.  No weak sister projects in the bunch.  five of them, including my son, will sit for their final Eagle Scout BOR next Tuesday night.

These boys are the core leadership of our Troop.  they are all good scouts , excuse me, Boy Scouts.  They grumble sometimes, like most boys, but they all like being scouts and camping together.  They would have stayed in longer, but they all decided that they came into this and have worked all these years as Boy Scouts and that they deserved the right to go out as Boy Scouts.  I don't blame them one iota.  I could not be prouder of my son for earning Eagle, but I am also proud of the way he and his buddies decided to overcome this issue.

@Monkeytamer, all the best to your clutch of Eagles!

I would be remiss if I didn't encourage you to tell them that theirs still work to be done. There a Palms -- not just insta-palms -- to be earned, Hornaday Awards, Patrol leaders to train, camps to staff, adventures to be had, etc ... There's nothing greater than a bunch of fellas modelling scouting to the rest of the troop without fretting over advancement. The rest of their terms should be awesome.

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23 hours ago, Oldscout448 said:

Not knowing Monkeytamers son I cannot speak for him or his friends. 

   But more than a few older scouts that I do know are also planning on leaving or have already departed.   It does not seem that it is so much an issue with girls troops as much as the boys feel that the troop belongs to them.    they have spent a third of their life in it after all.  They deeply resent National changing its membership, its focus, its very name.   They have no voice, no platform, so they vote with the only means left to them. Their feet.

Their response makes little sense. Their troop is not affected - it remains all male. Since they have invested so much time in Scouting, why should they leave? Allowing girls to become Scouts in the BSA at younger ages than 14 does not affect their troop. Trademark issues required a name change of the program. Surveys of the youth (and absolutely every group measured including volunteers, donors, Eagle Scouts, the OA and others showed a similar level of support) in Scouting showed a 75% or greater support for the addition of girls so they had a voice. The youth were in favor of adding girls. The focus has not changed from developing character and leadership in today's youth for tomorrow's citizens. So they have a voice, their platform was not successful, so they should have learned that is life for all of us. They should be encouraged to continue as perseverance and resilience  is something that we all hope as volunteers that we are helping the youth to do.

Obviously, I have no first hand knowledge beyond units that I am a volunteer, but this kind of reaction seems to represent the adult volunteer views influencing the boys. It is sad that because the program is being offered to more youth that some now wish to discourage youth from participating in a positive life changing program.  

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Now why do you want to throw such a logical and true comment into the mix?  Don't you know that young adolescent males are threatened by intelligent, focused females that may add broader ideas and challenge them?  The real irony is that when you look at inter-gender activities that do challenge boys with new direction and willingness to take on responsibility and leadership you see overall more success within those activities.  And, in many cases, you still see boys rise to the challenge.  And it is sometimes the boy that seldom had risen beyond the group before.  

As one of my Scouter friends said a day or two ago when we were discussing "issues"; "If we could just get rid of the adults, the youth would be fine!"  Or, something to that effect.  More and more often this is exactly where the real problem lies.  JMHO of course.

 

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I don't see the benefit of engaging Monkeytamer. It was his first post and he implied he wants to get out of scouts before girls are allowed to join. Which is less than 3 weeks from now so I doubt he'll be around much longer.

The issues being brought up on this forum do not match my experience locally. Everything I've heard from local troops are that whether they do or don't want girls they either will or will not create a girls troop. That's the end of the discussion. So I think these people that say they have to leave before girls join are not that common. What's probably more common is a mix of opinions in each troop. And those that are upset will leave. Those that stick around are going to make themselves miserable.

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1 hour ago, skeptic said:

Now why do you want to throw such a logical and true comment into the mix?  Don't you know that young adolescent males are threatened by intelligent, focused females that may add broader ideas and challenge them?  The real irony is that when you look at inter-gender activities that do challenge boys with new direction and willingness to take on responsibility and leadership you see overall more success within those activities.  And, in many cases, you still see boys rise to the challenge.  And it is sometimes the boy that seldom had risen beyond the group before.  

Since skeptic started his juvenile post with a condescending opinion, I am curious to hear his evidence of inter-gender activities that he says challenges boys with more success. A mature response would have started with evidence and skipped the unscoutlike postering.

Barry

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2 hours ago, Eagledad said:

Since skeptic started his juvenile post with a condescending opinion, I am curious to hear his evidence of inter-gender activities that he says challenges boys with more success. A mature response would have started with evidence and skipped the unscoutlike postering.

Barry

Okay, while I apologize for what you feel was a juvenile response, though I would say it just reflects my screen name, I will make an effort to give you a sense of my opinion. 

I have spent over fifty years working within the Scouting family and have witnessed boys being challenged by girls in venture groups and on a number of camp staffs, and on one or two occasions unexpected intermixing with Girl Scouts on an outing.  But, most of the observation of which I speak come from working in middle schools and a few high schools where there were mixed gender groups for projects and such.  There were a few instances even at the fourth and fifth-grade levels.  Since I subbed for twenty years in many schools and three districts I had a fairly broad experience. 

I have also spent many years reading various discussions and studies related to these kinds of interactions just for interest sake and a broadening of my perspectives.  

I guess I am simply getting jaded in regard to the over the top responses being proffered in regard to this current issue, but also every issue that suggests moving in new directions within the BSA and Scouting in general.  It should be obvious by other posts that I believe change is a constant and necessary and should be run with to the best of our abilities.  At the same time, I have noted that any changes come with the need to be flexible and find the best paths forward.  Change is inevitable in whatever arena we are in.  So, I hope this post may be cleared now and I have been able to reenter my dotage.

 

 

Edited by skeptic
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4 hours ago, vol_scouter said:

 Surveys of the youth (and absolutely every group measured including volunteers, donors, Eagle Scouts, the OA and others showed a similar level of support) in Scouting showed a 75% or greater support for the addition of girls so they had a voice. The youth were in favor of adding girls.

Would you please post where you got those results? I have been looking everywhere, and cannot find the results of the membership poll BSA took after teh town halls in 2017. All the stats I have seen comes from non-member surveys.

I know in my neck of the woods, it is no where close to 75% for the membership change. Maybe 35-40 overall, and youth is more like 5% for.

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I was shown the official survey results. Many groups were surveyed and the results were similar. Some groups were over 85% positive. There were a number of questions to elicit quite a bit of information to have confidence in the results. That the results for all surveys were all highly supportive of adding girls gave me confidence that the decision is well supported in the field. People tend to socialize with folks who have similar views so I have no doubts that some folks will be aware of views overwhelmingly pro or con. I know some who only have heard supportive views. In my area in the conservative south, the support is very high with also no one opposed.

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Like many of us who post here I'm just a lowly volunteer.  I work mostly with the OA at the chapter level where about a dozen troops make up 90% of its active members.  As far as I have been able to ascertain none of those Scout participated in the survey. In fact they were totally unaware that  the survey even existed. I learned about it only from this forum.  I heard nothing from my district, nothing from my Council, nothing from my lodge. Nary a word could I find pertaining to it on the many pages of the council website.

So please excuse me if I am also a bit of a Skeptic.

Edited by Oldscout448
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The OA was surveyed. I do not recall the method by which the members were surveyed, but there was a good response. For the survey that went out to the councils, some councils asked invited everyone in the council to participate - that occurred in my council. Some councils selected a smaller group, some only the board, and some only the Key 3. That survey was controlled by the councils. All of the others was much more broadly surveyed.

 

 

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On ‎1‎/‎11‎/‎2019 at 5:50 PM, John-in-KC said:

What the devil is this addition to the requirements of “an initial board of review”?  You do have a copy of the Guide to Advancement, yes?

I'm sorry John. I don't understand your question.  I'm not being snarky either.  I just don't get what you are asking me.

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On ‎1‎/‎11‎/‎2019 at 6:29 PM, shortridge said:

If you feel you can speak for them - why did they feel this way? Why do they see a girls’ troop as an issue to overcome? What impact did they see a girls’ troop having on their Scouting experience?

I tried to reply once, but it disappeared.  If I end up with two replies, I apologize for the redundancy. 

I have been with them for most of their lives.  I was their CM for their entire cub career and have been an ASM for their entire Boy Scout career.  So although they never asked me to, I can probably speak for them as well as anyone.  They will never be impacted directly by the appearance of girls in the troop.  Our troop is an established troop and will never willingly be "linked".  Our CO has no interest in the mammoth undertaking of standing up a girls troop.  Plus they support a vibrant GSUSA program.  So these boys will probably never see a girl Scout in the field.  What they have a beef with is not finishing as what they started as, i.e. Boy Scouts.  They feel that some adults who don't know them or speak for them in a far away place have pulled the rug out from under them and that the National organization does not value their time, commitment and hard work all these years.  They feel like they should have earned the right, through many years of hard work and endurance to go out as Boy Scouts, not as some name that doesn't even make sense to them.  One of them asked me: "what even is a Scout BSA?  Tat's not even a noun!"  They feel like they earned the right to earn their Eagle Scout and take the mantle as a Boy Scout, just like their brothers and fathers and every other man who ever reached that pinnacle of Boy Scouting.  So they looked at the timelines and realized that by getting their butts in gear, they could make the deadline and stand among the last remaining Boy Scout Eagles instead of as one of the new "Scout BSA" Eagles.  I think they took proactive steps to make something they wanted happen instead of howling at the sky.  I think it was a pretty mature reaction.

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