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Joris

Reception of Uniform in the public

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I am a Scout from Germany, and we currently discuss how we want to wear our Uniforms.

Currently, we are wearing it like shown in the Picture.

DSC01775-1920x1280.thumb.jpg.8d0c269e285b10f1bfe966667be72d2c.jpgA major point of our discussion if, that we got from time to time commentary that we would be the Hitler Youth or something like this.  One reason that could be the case is how we wear the Uniform, which is relatively similar to the Hitler Youth, another reason might be that we can be identified as Germans immediately, and we wear any kind of Uniform.

So my Question would be if non-German Scouts who wear the Uniform relatively similar got comments like we got about, for example, Hitler Youth?

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Guten tag, wie gehts?  Welkomen zu Scouter dot com.....

In Germany, I could understand how someone of a certain mindset might try to connect a Pfadfinder mit  die   Hitler Jungen.  Your unfortunate history needs to be remembered and dealt with.    Here in the US of A,   Scouting has  sometimes been thought to be part of our military.  It is important to politely disabuse (explain how it is wrong) that idea ,  both with words and actions. Ignorance must be forgiven, when possible, yes? Education is a blessing.  The uniform should look different.  Ours is decidedly not military, in my opinion.  You should compare how your present uniform is or is not similar to that  unfortunate "other organization", and try to adjust it thereby. Make sure your symbols are markedly different.    It is well known that Hitler did not agree with the ideals of Scouting and actively suppressed it.  His ideals were not Scouting's ideals.  Make that plain.   Let your life show that difference.  

I hope my comments have helped.   

Auf wiedersehn,  sehe sie auf der spur ? 

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When my scouts were picking out neckerchief colors I told them they should not pick solid red (looks like communist young pioneers)  nor solid black (Hitler Youth).   I was not really concerned about people seeing black and making a Hilter Youth connection.  (I have a troop of girls, and there does not seem to be a lot of German influence in the area in which we live.)  I was genuniely concerned about how people locally would react to girls wearing red neckerchiefs.  We have many adults in our community (including the parents of some of our scouts) who grew up in the People's Republic of China.

 

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Welcome to the forum, @Joris. It's always nice to see a scout here. Extra credit for being from outside the US!

What I see in that picture is a scout that likely just got back from a backpacking trip, complete with spoon in pocket and plenty of dirt. But that's me, I've been there before so I know what scouts do. At the same time, my father was born in Krefeld and immigrated to the US in 1939. As a child in the 60's I remember the bad feelings my dad had about Germany. In the late 80's there was a push in Germany to reconnect with Jews that had left before the Holocaust and my dad was invited to travel back to his old town. It was a really good thing for everyone. My dad finally had some closure and the students he talked to learned a great deal as well. Everyone had a chance to see each other as human first rather than some preconceived label.

To answer your question, what people see depends on who they are and what they know. The clothing you wear can not change that. This is not an issue about what clothing to wear, it's about people's preconceived ideas. We have a very similar problem in that many in scouts think some people see our uniform as being militaristic. Many of our scouts think that others see the uniform as being goofy, or silly, or just something for nerds and geeks. Note that the problem is where people in scouts are worried about how others see the uniform. Think of the uniform as an ink-blot psychology test. It's a way to look into what people think. You can't change how others think by what you wear. However, you can change opinions by representing the best of what scouting is while wearing your uniform. Be helpful, friendly and cheerful while wearing your uniform and people will change their minds. Again, let people see you as human first and that will help break down their preconceived ideas.

By the way, I wish our uniform was similar to yours. It's much simpler than ours and looks more useful in the outdoors.

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Hi Joris

I'm based in the UK and have a couple of observations.

Firstly yes, we have had very occassional comments that we are some kind of far right organisation. Mostly they come from very foolish individuals and it has caused very few problems.

Secondly one of my assistant leaders is half German and has spent time with British and German scouts. She does say that the perception in Germany is very different. The group she was associated with in Berlin very rarely wore uniform at all.

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29 minutes ago, Cambridgeskip said:

Hi Joris

I'm based in the UK and have a couple of observations.

Firstly yes, we have had very occassional comments that we are some kind of far right organisation. Mostly they come from very foolish individuals and it has caused very few problems.

Secondly one of my assistant leaders is half German and has spent time with British and German scouts. She does say that the perception in Germany is very different. The group she was associated with in Berlin very rarely wore uniform at all.

How often Uniforms are worn  by Scouts here really depends on the groups. While we are a group with a relatively strict, there are stricter one, many wear them less often or not as accurate as we do.

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1. WELCOME TO DA FORUMS!

 

2. Sadly Hitler and the NAZIs took over the Scout associations in Germany and turned them into the Hitler Youth. Hitler Youth uniforms and equipment  were essentially Scout uniforms with the 'Be Prepared" and other Scout identifiers taken off. I saw online one rare knife from the period that  had the Scout association info  written over,  but still noticable,  by the HY info The NAZI takeover  of the German Scout Association was so big a deal, that BP himself intervened to try and prevent the takeover from happening.

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