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A Letter from BSA’s Chief Diversity Officer & Vice President of Diversity and Inclusion


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I agree Fred, I  have never heard a kid say that they joined Scouts to learn leadership, responsibility, life enriching lessons, diversity or inclusion.  They want to camp out, play with fire and kniv

I am a lifer. Started as a Cub, earned Eagle and aged out. Was a Sea Scout for a bit while serving as an ASM. Not only did i not leave the movement,  but I also worked for it.  In my professional opin

This is a long-stated position of mine.   BSA needs to be careful about their messages to the adult volunteers.  Adult volunteers too often hear that BSA is about leadership.  Thus, their job is to

Ok, I'm gonna say this and expect tons of backlash and criticism,  but here goes:  my true thoughts on this whole BSA thing and thats Cubs, Scouts, Ventures, Explorers, OA, Sea Scouts or Yogi Bear himself;  use all that you have and know but break out a big dose of COMMON SENSE and make things work!

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5 hours ago, Mrjeff said:

The simple fact that a person is a Scout is enough. A Scout is a Scout regardless of race, creed, .......it's just that simple and to have separate venues for certain people builds further exclusion.  If this kind of thing is appropriate for one segment of Scouting it should be acceptable for all.

 

 

While it would be great that just being a scout would be enough, it obviously is not.  Otherwise we would have racism, the sex abuse scandals,, or any other issues.  But we do, so living in a fantasy world simply is not realistic. 
 

maybe you have never been part of an organization where you were in the minority, where you did not have a voice or you were different and it impacted the people you got to know, the roles you could play, the friendships you could make.  That is the service these styles of meetings provide.  They are not secret cabal to take over scouting, or develop a separate set of rules, or anything.  To be honest, if everyone was living up to the scout oath and law, we would not need these meetings for minority groups.  
 

 

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19 hours ago, Mrjeff said:

BOY Scouts has an ALL GIRL (no boys) camporee.  I guess that's just a grand idea, but it sure is giving me a headache 🤯

Sounds like an organization that my mother, sisters, wife and daughter belonged  to once upon a time.  

Squirrel  Gouts?  Something like that anyway.

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A fantasy world is achieved when reverse segregation is implemented in an effort to change biases and segregation.  That doesn't even sound right, "let's have a gathering of all red headed men with beards so they will have a voice and be recognized".  Having these separate gatherings clearly sends a message that its just fine for certain groups to practice this and its not just fine for others.  In reality these pore minority groups are more biased and self serving then the majority.   I am braced for the flashback......

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And please, please, please don't make assumptions or presumptions as to what I have or have not been a part of.  I've been many places, many things, and have been a part of a bunch of stuff, so please don't make inferences about me based on the fact that you disagree.

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51 minutes ago, Mrjeff said:

A fantasy world is achieved when reverse segregation is implemented in an effort to change biases and segregation.  That doesn't even sound right, "let's have a gathering of all red headed men with beards so they will have a voice and be recognized".  Having these separate gatherings clearly sends a message that its just fine for certain groups to practice this and its not just fine for others.  In reality these pore minority groups are more biased and self serving then the majority.   I am braced for the flashback......

There is no flashback.  Your example of red heads is absurd.  Affinity groups, if integrated well into an organization can be very beneficial and successful in developing a culture of inclusion and belonging. It is a longstanding best practice in large organizations.   If you want to have a meeting of only white males, go right ahead.  So long as it has the same goals and structure as other affinity groups within Scouts BSA. 

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Affinity groups is just another term for reverse segregation.  These groups may work in a commercial environment when an individual's livelihood is on the line.  If the focus was aimed at the kids and not precieved ideals all of this dialog wouldn't happen because the kids don't care, it's the adults with their ideas of how things should be, that brings us to this point.  Face it, life is in no way fair.  Some have advantages that others don't an this is based on ability, desire, self motivation, drive and desire.  Throw in a couple of doses of experience and add a dash of genetics and you have an individual.  Its up to that individual to find their place because that place is not going to change for the individual.  And none of that has anything to do with affinity groups, segregation is what it is no matter what someone names it.

 

 

 

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To me, the bottom line is this. You can't make people like someone else and it's impossible to force anyone to accept anything.  You can't control people unless you can control their money or their freedom.  Anything else is the choice of the individual, regardless how much diversity, sensitivity, equality or acceptance education and training someone is exposed to.

 

 

 

 

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35 minutes ago, Mrjeff said:

Affinity groups is just another term for reverse segregation.  These groups may work in a commercial environment when an individual's livelihood is on the line.  If the focus was aimed at the kids and not precieved ideals all of this dialog wouldn't happen because the kids don't care, it's the adults with their ideas of how things should be, that brings us to this point.  Face it, life is in no way fair.  Some have advantages that others don't an this is based on ability, desire, self motivation, drive and desire.  Throw in a couple of doses of experience and add a dash of genetics and you have an individual.  Its up to that individual to find their place because that place is not going to change for the individual.  And none of that has anything to do with affinity groups, segregation is what it is no matter what someone names it.

 

 

 

If I may, I think you're getting hung up something that's maybe not as significant as you think it is. Instead of calling it an affinity group or whatever just think of it as subcommittees: Engineering, Finance, LGBTQ. That's how I view it. Everybody has a specific task to work on and bring back to the group. 

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55 minutes ago, yknot said:

If I may, I think you're getting hung up something that's maybe not as significant as you think it is. Instead of calling it an affinity group or whatever just think of it as subcommittees: Engineering, Finance, LGBTQ. That's how I view it. Everybody has a specific task to work on and bring back to the group. 

Apologies if this comes across as snarky,  but I would expect engineers  to report on Engineering, accountants on financial situations, what are the aforementioned racially and sexually defined affinity  groups supposed to report on?  

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