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Sea Scouts is OFFICIALLY the youth program of US Coast Guard Auxiliary

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Merlyn:  What the information you have means is that if the unit wants to call itself a "Sea Scout ship", the declaration of Religious Principals does apply.  If they want to call themselves an "Maritime Explorer Post", the declaration of Religious Principles does not apply.  An Auxiliary Flotilla can actually offer both registration status at the same time.  The Exploring program is a career-oriented subsidiary/membership category of the BSA that has no religious membership standard.  One of the reasons it was established was because of complaints of persons such as yourself, that government should not require a young person to recognize any religious principal in order to participate in programming.  So, a young adult who wants to be active with the youth program offered by a Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla can resister as either a "Sea Scout" or an "Explorer" and do the same things.  I might also mention that although Scouting had a "don't-ask-don't-tell" policy for about 20 years (eliminated movement wide-about 5 years ago), that never applied to Exploring either.  I was a Sea Scout and we never had religious content in our program, and I think that is typical.  If you have a young adult that wants to take advantage of our maritime programs, you can do so knowing she will be welcomed and will not have to recognize any religious principles.  

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9 minutes ago, Cburkhardt said:

Merlyn:  What the information you have means is that if the unit wants to call itself a "Sea Scout ship", the declaration of Religious Principals does apply.  If they want to call themselves an "Maritime Explorer Post", the declaration of Religious Principles does not apply.  An Auxiliary Flotilla can actually offer both registration status at the same time.  The Exploring program is a career-oriented subsidiary/membership category of the BSA that has no religious membership standard.  One of the reasons it was established was because of complaints of persons such as yourself, that government should not require a young person to recognize any religious principal in order to participate in programming.  So, a young adult who wants to be active with the youth program offered by a Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla can resister as either a "Sea Scout" or an "Explorer" and do the same things.  I might also mention that although Scouting had a "don't-ask-don't-tell" policy for about 20 years (eliminated movement wide-about 5 years ago), that never applied to Exploring either.  I was a Sea Scout and we never had religious content in our program, and I think that is typical.  If you have a young adult that wants to take advantage of our maritime programs, you can do so knowing she will be welcomed and will not have to recognize any religious principles.  

 

"An Auxiliary Flotilla can actually offer both registration status at the same time."

No, it can't.  The US CG AUX is part of the government and can't discriminate on the basis of religion by chartering any BSA unit that does not allow atheists.

"So, a young adult who wants to be active with the youth program offered by a Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla can resister as either a "Sea Scout" or an "Explorer" and do the same things."

But this is advertised as being only GCAUX and Sea Scouts as its official youth program.  Anyone looking into the Sea Scouts will see that you have to follow the DRP, and the government can't require that to join their youth program.

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1 hour ago, Merlyn_LeRoy said:

 

"An Auxiliary Flotilla can actually offer both registration status at the same time."

No, it can't.  The US CG AUX is part of the government and can't discriminate on the basis of religion by chartering any BSA unit that does not allow atheists.

"So, a young adult who wants to be active with the youth program offered by a Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla can resister as either a "Sea Scout" or an "Explorer" and do the same things."

But this is advertised as being only GCAUX and Sea Scouts as its official youth program.  Anyone looking into the Sea Scouts will see that you have to follow the DRP, and the government can't require that to join their youth program.

Any Sea Scout from any ship can join the CGAUX even if they are not in a Ship that is not sponsored by the Auxillary.  Normally you need to be 17 to join the Auxiliary.  The Auxiliary also provides deeply discounted rates for the excellent training courses they provide for Scouts and Scout leaders.

It is a small percentage of Sea Scouts that go into maritime industries in the future.  Some do for sure, but most are in the program to have fun scouting on the water.

Explorer Posts are part of the Learning for Life program on the BSA and can be sponsored by the Auxillary, Police, Fire, and others.  They don't follow Advancement in the same way as types of units.  I believe Stem Scouts also don't have the same by laws as well.

 

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Posted (edited)

BSA expressions of its  policy on "Reverent" and "Duty to God" are sometimes clear, sometimes opaque, and always inconsistent.  

 

Buddhism (to touch on only one of the expressly non-theistic religions allowed to have BSA units for nearly a century):

 

"Religious Principles and Key Terms

• Goal: Enlightenment through understanding of the reasons and causes of suffering.

• Essential elements: Awareness of impermanence and of oneself and compassion toward others.

Fundamental doctrine of Buddhism is the Four Noble Truths, which are:

o Noble Truth of Suffering

o Noble Truth of the Cause of Suffering

o Noble Truth of the Cessation of Suffering

o Noble Truth of the Path that leads to the Cessation of Suffering

• The last of the[se] Four Noble Truths is also referred to as the Noble Eightfold Path, and includes the practice of:

o Right Views

o Right Thoughts

o Right Speech

o Right Conduct

o Right Livelihood

o Right Effort

o Right Mindfulness

o Right Meditation

https://filestore.scouting.org/filestore/pdf/210-012_WB.pdf  

 

"Declaration of Religious Principle. The Boy Scouts of America maintains that no member can grow into the best kind of citizen without recognizing an obligation to God. In the first part of the Scout Oath or Promise the member declares, "On my honor I will do my best to do my duty to God and my country and to obey the Scout Law." The recognition of God as the ruling and leading power in the universe and the grateful acknowledgment of his favors and blessings are necessary to the best type of citizenship and are wholesome precepts in the education of the growing members."

The Handbook explains “reverent” as “A Scout is reverent toward God.  He is faithful in his religious duties.  He respects the beliefs of others.”

All levels of advancement in the Scouting program have requirements recognizing “duty to God”:

 

Boy Scouts of America believes that no member can grow into the best kind of citizen without recognizing an obligation to God.  Accordingly, adult volunteer leaders of Boy Scouts of America obligate themselves to do their duty to God and be reverent as embodied in the Scout Oath, the Scout Law, and the Declaration of Religious Principle.  Because of its views concerning the duty to God, Boy Scouts of America believes that an atheist or agnostic is not an appropriate role model of the Scout Oath and Law for adolescent boys.  Because of Scouting’s methods and beliefs, Scouting does not accept atheists and agnostics as adult volunteer leaders.

 

The Aim of the Scouting Movement:

 ” Its aim is to produce healthy, happy, helpful citizens, of both sexes, to eradicate the prevailing narrow self-interest; personal, political, sectarian and national, and to substitute for it a broader spirit of self-sacrifice and service in the cause of humanity; and thus to develop mutual goodwill and cooperation not only within our own country but abroad, between all countries.”  B-P.

 

Wiccans have been allowed to charter a few units, but they believe is a God and a Goddess.  They express thanks for Her blessings as, as well as His.

 

Then we have the Higher power" interpretation - BSA as a Twelve Step organization.

"'That was a cornerstone to growing developmentally as youth do, that they need to have a belief in a higher power,'said Brian Nastase, scout executive for the area Quivira Council. “And a belief in God means we are open to all faiths. We have Jewish scouts, we have Muslim scouts, Christian scouts, Buddhist scouts. It’s probably the most diverse organization in the city of Wichita, maybe even the country.”

 

Then we have the snake devouring itself tail-first.

"The Boy Scouts of America maintains that no member can grow into the best kind of citizen without recognizing an obligation to God and, therefore, recognizes the religious element in the training of the member, [BUT] but it is absolutely nonsectarian in its attitude toward that religious training."

non·sec·tar·i·an

nänsekˈterēən

adjective

not involving or relating to a specific religious sect or political group.

Edited by TAHAWK

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"Any Sea Scout from any ship can join the CGAUX even if they are not in a Ship that is not sponsored by the Auxillary."

That's not what I'm talking about at all.

The CGAUX can't charter any Sea Scout Ships.  They can't have the Sea Scout program as their official youth program.

"Explorer Posts are part of the Learning for Life program on the BSA and can be sponsored by the Auxillary, Police, Fire, and others."

That's because Explorers don't exclude atheists.  The Explorer program USED to, but when the ACLU sued, the BSA split it into Exploring and Venturing (with Exploring being under L4L and Venturing still excluding atheists).

The Sea Scouts still exclude atheists.

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3 minutes ago, Merlyn_LeRoy said:

"Any Sea Scout from any ship can join the CGAUX even if they are not in a Ship that is not sponsored by the Auxillary."

That's not what I'm talking about at all.

The CGAUX can't charter any Sea Scout Ships.  They can't have the Sea Scout program as their official youth program.

"Explorer Posts are part of the Learning for Life program on the BSA and can be sponsored by the Auxillary, Police, Fire, and others."

That's because Explorers don't exclude atheists.  The Explorer program USED to, but when the ACLU sued, the BSA split it into Exploring and Venturing (with Exploring being under L4L and Venturing still excluding atheists).

The Sea Scouts still exclude atheists.

Feel free to tell that to the units that have already been chartered over the last few months.  I know this on actual fact, let me know if you would like to the National Commodore, I have his info.

 

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"Feel free to tell that to the units that have already been chartered over the last few months."

I'm sure the Freedom From Religion Foundation legal department and the Appignani Humanist Legal Center will be contacting the Sea Scouts and the CGAUX instead of individual units.

"I know this on actual fact, let me know if you would like to the National Commodore, I have his info."

I would, thanks.

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16 hours ago, Merlyn_LeRoy said:

But this is advertised as being only GCAUX and Sea Scouts as its official youth program.  Anyone looking into the Sea Scouts will see that you have to follow the DRP, and the government can't require that to join their youth program.

I expect you are correct … and I doubt the BSA has enough money or will to fight another lawsuit.  In reality, I don't think it would have any day to day impact on the Sea Scouts, so I doubt BSA would fight hard.  You could probably send them a strongly worded letter on a law firm letter head and see the change later this year.

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Well, here we are again in the Faith and Chaplaincy forummmmmm.

I suppose the big question is, is the Coast Guard Auxiliary really a US Government agency?  (Named under the Homeland Security Department, appears yes)  

*Do  the folks there receive a federal pay check?  (yes and no.  Upper organizers do, local folks are volunteers).   

**Or is the Aux agency only supported with federal "stuff".?  (Appears, yes and no. )

***Are  dues paid by "members" for the USCGAux activities?  ( most definitely.  But  for the volunteers and their support, there would not be a USCGAux. )

> > > >  For instance,  ScoutsBSA troops regularly visit and camp on federal property (parks,  army bases, naval vessels, etc.) but that does not equate with the Scout units being "chartered" by  any gov't entity. 

The US  Coast Guard (semper paratus) is not the sponsoring agency.... It's the Auxiliary.  But, the Aux is very closely linked . . . .  It is NOT expected to be a Coast Guard Reserve, that is a different thing entirely.  

Then too, we can discuss whether atheism is a religion  ( a belief system?)  unto itself.....  If so, then there is no reason why the BSA can't recognize the Humanist Society Youth Awards.... 

Howdy , Merlyn, glad to see you still up and around..... https://americanhumanist.org/get-involved/events-and-conferences/ 

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Even the BSA's own documents on chartering organizations says the USCG AUX can't charter units:

https://scoutingwire.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/Chartered-Organization-Resource-Guide_522-925_wb.pdf

In the section titled "Chartered Organization Code List" starting on page 125, it lists codes for various chartering organizations, and EVERY government organization has an asterisk, which is at the end of the list meaning "* Available to Learning for Life only"

Note this entry on page 126:

075 Coast Guard (Stations, Reserves and Auxiliaries)*

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1 hour ago, Merlyn_LeRoy said:

Even the BSA's own documents on chartering organizations says the USCG AUX can't charter units:

https://scoutingwire.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/Chartered-Organization-Resource-Guide_522-925_wb.pdf

In the section titled "Chartered Organization Code List" starting on page 125, it lists codes for various chartering organizations, and EVERY government organization has an asterisk, which is at the end of the list meaning "* Available to Learning for Life only"

Note this entry on page 126:

075 Coast Guard (Stations, Reserves and Auxiliaries)*

So you keep saying they can't charter units but they have.  Maybe the publications haven't been updated.  

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No, it's a sure loser in court.  I've already notified the FFRF and the AHA, both of which file lawsuits to protect the rights of atheists.

The BSA simply can't be trusted.

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Clearly someone is not as sure about it being a loser.

I agree that that someone may be wrong.

That said, what is the other premier sailing organization for youth that the USCGA could charter?

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Use Maritime Exploring Clubs, they're under Exploring/LFL and don't have religious requirements for membership.

 

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