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David CO

Lone Scouts - a better structure

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7 minutes ago, David CO said:

I know you don't care.  You only care about your own program.  I don't have the power to change anything.  I can't scrap the current patrol method.  I'm just a bystander to the bankruptcy.  I suspect that if your program gets cancelled, and if you sound angry, people might say that you are simply over reacting.

Mmm, OK?

Have a good day.

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3 hours ago, David CO said:

That is simply not true.  Lone Scouting was originally created in Chicago to serve newspaper boys and other urban working boys.  My dad was one of them.  He peddled vegetables off of a street cart on the south side of Chicago.  As such, he knew a lot of the newspaper boys who sold newspapers on the street corners.  They recruited him into Lone Scouting. 

Many small farmers would bring their crops into the city and sell them to street vendors, like my father.  They got to know each other, and Lone Scouting spread to small farmers and agricultural worker in rural communities.  By the time BSA bought out LSA, there were more rural Lone Scouts than urban Lone Scouts.  There were once 250,000 Lone Scouts.

Can you imagine what a difference it would make today if BSA had 250,000 Lone Scouts registered?  BSA has distorted the original vision of Lone Scouts.  I know that you would like to restore the original vision of Boy Scouting.  I wish you would want to restore the original vision of Lone Scouting as well.

This is incorrect. I have attached the official BSA Lone Scouting  guidebook for reference. https://filestore.scouting.org/filestore/boyscouts/pdf/511-420.pdf

Here is also an article from Bryan on Scouting that helps explains the origins and reasoning behind Lone Scouting: https://blog.scoutingmagazine.org/2015/09/28/what-are-lone-scouts/

I don't believe the BSA has a distorted vision of Lone Scouting. It actually may be you have a distorted vision. Hope that helps. Thanks. 

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What I found from wiki. Membership numbers are fuzzy but @David CO seems correct.

Lone Scouts of America (LSA) was a Scouting organization for American boys that operated from 1915 until it merged with the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) in 1924. The LSA was founded by W. D. Boyce, publisher of the Chicago Ledger and the Saturday Blade and one of the founders of the BSA. Boyce felt that the program of the BSA did not help the rural boy who could not find enough other boys to form a troop or a patrol. James E. West, the first Chief Scout Executive of the BSA, disagreed with Boyce's concept, believing that the 4-H program was fulfilling the role. After Boyce left the BSA, he started the Lone Scouts of America and incorporated it on January 9, 1915. Boyce became the executive officer or Chief Totem and Frank Allan Morgan became the editor of The Lone Scout. In October 1915, Boyce appointed all of his paperboys as members of the LSA and published the first issue of The Lone Scout magazine.

The LSA program was inspired by the Lonecraft program of the British Boy Scout Association and by Ernest Thompson Seton's Woodcraft Indians program that used American Indian themes.[1] No adult leaders were required in the Lone Scout program, and there were no age limits. By November 1915, over 30,000 members were reported. Lone Scouts who lived near each other could form a "local tribe", while others could form a "mail tribe" and communicate by post. Tribes could join together to form "wigwams". Tribes elected officers such as chief (president, initially called captain), sachem (vice-president), scribe (secretary) and wampum-bearer (treasurer). By October 1916, the LSA reported 133,000 members. By popular demand, a uniform was created in 1917 and the Lone Scout Supply Company was formed

In April 1924, Boyce finally accepted James West's persistent offer of a merger with the BSA. On June 16, 1924 the merger was formalized. When The Lone Scout ceased publication, many of the boys dropped out of Scouting entirely. About 65,000 Lone Scouts transferred to the BSA, and membership peaked at 108,000 in 1926. The BSA ran the program unchanged for about a decade as the Lone Scout Service and then the Lone Scout Division. The unique program features were then eliminated and the Lone Scouts transitioned to the standard Boy Scout program. Lone Cub Scouts were added after the Cub Scouting program was introduced in 1930.

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

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1 hour ago, carebear3895 said:

I don't believe the BSA has a distorted vision of Lone Scouting. It actually may be you have a distorted vision

I don't think so.  I was a Lone Scout, and later a member of the Lone Indian Fellowship, an alumni organization made up of former Lone Scouts.  I had many opportunities to speak with men who had been amongst the first group of Lone Scouts.  

If, however, you are speaking of my distorted eyesight, you would be absolutely correct.  I had an eye doctor appointment last week, and I need new lenses.  Old age is not for wimps.

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7 hours ago, David CO said:

That is simply not true.  Lone Scouting was originally created in Chicago to serve newspaper boys and other urban working boys.  My dad was one of them.  He peddled vegetables off of a street cart on the south side of Chicago.  As such, he knew a lot of the newspaper boys who sold newspapers on the street corners.  They recruited him into Lone Scouting. 

Many small farmers would bring their crops into the city and sell them to street vendors, like my father.  They got to know each other, and Lone Scouting spread to small farmers and agricultural worker in rural communities.  By the time BSA bought out LSA, there were more rural Lone Scouts than urban Lone Scouts.  There were once 250,000 Lone Scouts.

Can you imagine what a difference it would make today if BSA had 250,000 Lone Scouts registered?  BSA has distorted the original vision of Lone Scouts.  I know that you would like to restore the original vision of Boy Scouting.  I wish you would want to restore the original vision of Lone Scouting as well.

This sounds like a wonderful program - even in today's uber connected world of 2020.

I don't know why this is an either/or scenario.  You want the lone scout experience - join up that way.  You want patrol method Scouting just a Troop.  Both can exist can't they?  I'm on board 100% - what do we need to do?

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53 minutes ago, ParkMan said:

This sounds like a wonderful program - even in today's uber connected world of 2020.

I don't know why this is an either/or scenario.  You want the lone scout experience - join up that way.  You want patrol method Scouting just a Troop.  Both can exist can't they?  I'm on board 100% - what do we need to do?

BSA policy states that Lone Scouting is only for kids who are unable to join a traditional unit.  If a traditional unit is available, and if the boy is able to attend traditional unit meetings and activities, he is ineligible to be a Lone Scout.  

 I really do appreciate your conciliatory attitude.  It's just not possible.  The only likelihood for Lone Scouting to rebound would be for BSA to go under.  It really is an either/or scenario.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, David CO said:

BSA policy states that Lone Scouting is only for kids who are unable to join a traditional unit.  If a traditional unit is available, and if the boy is able to attend traditional unit meetings and activities, he is ineligible to be a Lone Scout.  

 I really do appreciate your conciliatory attitude.  It's just not possible.  The only likelihood for Lone Scouting to rebound would be for BSA to go under.  It really is an either/or scenario.

My gut tells me that in this climate, if a group could articulate a mechanism for a lone scout program to work and coexist alongside traditional patrol based programs then it's a possibility.  I've been around enough high level Scouters to know that the door is open for all kinds of innovative activities right now.  The challenge in things like this is knowing how to talk to the right people about it.  You call up your DE or local membership chair and start talking Lone Scouts and they'll go tilt.  They are generally not going to have the right opportunities in the organization to even know how to raise it.  But, if an organized, knowledgeable group had the right approach for raising it internally, then anything is possible.

Edited by ParkMan
clarified a thought
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2 hours ago, ParkMan said:

if a group could articulate a mechanism for a lone scout program to work and coexist alongside traditional patrol based programs then it's a possibility. 

A talented group of Lone Scouters could probably articulate a mechanism for Lone Scouting to work as a stand alone program.  I can't imagine any way it could work within the council structure alongside traditional units.  OA doesn't accept Lone Scouts, so they won't be any help.

 

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2 hours ago, ParkMan said:

But, if an organized, knowledgeable group had the right approach for raising it internally, then anything is possible.

The ideal solution for Lone Scouting would be split off Lone Scouts of America into its own separate corporation again.  Undo the merger.  I can't imagine anyone at BSA would be open to that possibility.  I don't know if the bankruptcy court would consider ordering the separation.  So the demise of BSA is still the best bet for Lone Scouting.

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9 hours ago, David CO said:

A talented group of Lone Scouters could probably articulate a mechanism for Lone Scouting to work as a stand alone program.  I can't imagine any way it could work within the council structure alongside traditional units.  OA doesn't accept Lone Scouts, so they won't be any help.

 

This is where we need a group of proponents of Lone Scouting to advocate for it.  If I wanted to see this happen, I'd get my fellow Lone Scouting supporters together and come up with a description of how it could work and the value it would bring to Scouting.  How would it attract new youth to Scouting, what would they do, how many members could it attract, how would it be additive to our current programs?

Then I'd call up a progressive local Scouter (a District Commissioner, District Chair, or VP of Programming perhaps) and get them on board.  From there we'd take it to the Council Key Three and get them to support it.  What I find becomes important in this is that a group needs to have a plan that they enlist others to support.  That plan has to bring value to Scouting and be achievable.

If the council key three and board support this, then the OA will make it work.

8 hours ago, David CO said:

The ideal solution for Lone Scouting would be split off Lone Scouts of America into its own separate corporation again.  Undo the merger.  I can't imagine anyone at BSA would be open to that possibility.  I don't know if the bankruptcy court would consider ordering the separation.  So the demise of BSA is still the best bet for Lone Scouting.

I suspect that this is a non-starter.  Why would the BSA ever agree to this?  If the BSA did this they'd in essence be starting a competing Scouting program using the intellectual property of the BSA.  Hows does doing that help either the BSA or the youth it serves?  I think you'd find a lot more support for this within the BSA.

However, if you just want a "Lone Scouting" program that doesn't use the BSA's materials, then I don't see why you can't just go start one.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, ParkMan said:

Hows does doing that help either the BSA or the youth it serves? 

I agree that BSA would just see this as a competing organization.  They would never go along with a split.  

BSA has a lot of "paper" Chartered Organizations.  These are fictional entities that only exist on paper.   Their sole purpose is to allow the leaders of new units to complete the chartering paperwork without actually having a Chartered Organization.   A Lone Scout program would benefit BSA by allowing BSA to get rid of all of these fictional charters without depriving the scouts of an opportunity to participate in scouting.  

This, of course, would require both BSA and LSA to adopt a little bit of a Kris Kringle attitude towards each other's scouting programs.  If you can't give the Macy's customer what he wants, send him to Gimbles.

Edited by David CO

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Posted (edited)
14 minutes ago, David CO said:

I agree that BSA would just see this as a competing organization.  They would never go along with a split.  

BSA has a lot of "paper" Chartered Organizations.  These are fictional entities that only exist on paper.   Their sole purpose is to allow the leaders of new units to complete the chartering paperwork without actually having a Chartered Organization.   A Lone Scout program would benefit BSA by allowing BSA to get rid of all of these fictional charters without depriving the scouts of an opportunity to participate in scouting.  

I thought you wanted an organization where the Chartered Organizations ran everything? Why the sudden shift in heart? 

 

Edited by carebear3895
deleted unkind comment.
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Posted (edited)
18 hours ago, RememberSchiff said:

What I found from wiki. Membership numbers are fuzzy but @David CO seems correct.

 

It's not like I made anything up. I literally provided official BSA sources. 

And David suggested Lone Scouting started in an urban environment. You and I, based on your wiki source, actually agree that it didn't 

Edited by carebear3895
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11 minutes ago, carebear3895 said:

I thought you wanted an organization where the Chartered Organizations ran everything? Why the sudden shift in heart? 

 

No sudden shift in heart.  I loved being a Lone Scout.  I also loved being a scouter for a CO.  I can see the benefits and disadvantages in both ways.  In a more perfect world, we would have both to choose from, and our primary focus would not be competing for memberships, but on what is in the best interest of the scout.

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13 minutes ago, carebear3895 said:

It's not like I made anything up. I literally provided official BSA sources. 

And David suggested Lone Scouting started in an urban environment. You and I, based on your wiki source, actually agree that it didn't 

Are these the same BSA sources that say we never allowed dodgeball?  BSA sources are not always reliable.  They have their own agenda to push.

The authors of the Wiki article didn't seem to be too clear on the origin of Lone Scouting.  The article acknowledged the role played by the newsboys in Chicago, but it sounded unsure about many of the details.  Which came first, the newsboys or the farmers?  I strongly suspect that the authors read the BSA sources, and were confused by the discrepancies. 

Having spoken first hand with men who were among the first Lone Scout recruits, I am convinced that LSA started with the newsboys in Chicago.
 

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