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12 minutes ago, malraux said:

At the cub level, the requirements can be a burdensome. Two deep leadership at every den meeting, and requiring female leaders, even when parents are always present gets tough.

For Lions & Tigers, I do question the need for two leaders when every scout has a parent present.  

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@RichardB I  know better than to not follow the rules. So I do my best to keep up with BSA policies to the point that I have often had to tell my council's professional staff what is and is not a

Boy, I'm not sure why you want to set people's teeth on edge before you offer input, but you sure do a good job at it.  It's not the way I'd try and persuade folks, but I'll assume you have a reason.

"Coffee is gone"  😈👿😡

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26 minutes ago, Eagle1993 said:

I know dodgeball comes up and that impacted our troop as nearly every meeting ended in dodgeball.  We’ve excepted it and moved on.   To be fair, most schools in my area have also banned dodgeball so I don’t see this coming back.

And yet, some approved and completed Eagle projects in my area have been Gaga pits for schools. :unsure:

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3 minutes ago, RememberSchiff said:

And yet, some approved and completed Eagle projects in my area have been Gaga pits for schools. :unsure:

Yeah, that is a bit odd.  Though there are no gaga pits at the schools in my area (at least town) and the one at the scout camp we went to was removed.  However, they appear to be more common than schools playing dodgeball.   I'm not sure why gaga is considered safer than dodgeball.

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The frustrating part of G2SS for me is that it remains inconsistent with well known risks in other parts of the program. I work in an industry that has many, highly regulated, safety risks. Just because something is risky doesn't mean you never do it, it means you teach awareness of the risks and how to minimize them. That is a far better life lesson to kids than cutting activities and sitting around and playing computer games all day (which has it's own physical and mental health risks). Yes, they are teenagers and a lot of it doesn't stick the first few times you tell them, but you keep the message going rather than not do the activity.

Think of all the physical risks posed at Philmont or Northern Tier. We're willing to trust 14 year-olds to not fall/jump off a cliff, not drown in a lake in the middle of nowhere, make a .30-06 round and fire it, but can't trust them to play dodgeball or laser tag? What message does this send, other than "adults are inconsistent and the rules don't make sense". 

The problem I find with many large organizations is they aren't willing to tell their lawyers "no". Lawyers get paid to make up rules, they won't stop doing this until you tell them "enough". CEOs and Boards of Directors, most of whom have very little true understanding of risk management, believe that if they ever say "no" to a lawyer or an insurance company that wants to impose new restrictions, they are responsible for anything bad that happens afterward. What they fail to understand is all the bad things that happen when they agree to new rules/restrictions.

Edited by sierracharliescouter
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24 minutes ago, sierracharliescouter said:

The frustrating part of G2SS for me is that it remains inconsistent with well known risks in other parts of the program. I work in an industry that has many, highly regulated, safety risks. Just because something is risky doesn't mean you never do it, it means you teach awareness of the risks and how to minimize them. That is a far better life lesson to kids than cutting activities and sitting around and playing computer games all day (which has it's own physical and mental health risks). Yes, they are teenagers and a lot of it doesn't stick the first few times you tell them, but you keep the message going rather than not do the activity.

Think of all the physical risks posed at Philmont or Northern Tier. We're willing to trust 14 year-olds to not fall/jump off a cliff, not drown in a lake in the middle of nowhere, make a .30-06 round and fire it, but can't trust them to play dodgeball or laser tag? What message does this send, other than "adults are inconsistent and the rules don't make sense". 

The problem I find with many large organizations is they aren't willing to tell their lawyers "no". Lawyers get paid to make up rules, they won't stop doing this until you tell them "enough". CEOs and Boards of Directors, most of whom have very little true understanding of risk management, believe that if they ever say "no" to a lawyer or an insurance company that wants to impose new restrictions, they are responsible for anything bad that happens afterward. What they fail to understand is all the bad things that happen when they agree to new rules/restrictions.

No disagreement from me here.  But, we are unlikely to see this attitude change much due to our terribly flawed legal system.  Many of the lawsuits we see in this country would never even make it to court elsewhere.  While common sense appears in danger globally to some extent, in this country it is on life support.  JMHO of course, having ridden in pickup beds and not having had a helmet for my balloon tired, coaster brake bike, or for that matter, when I first rode a horse or rolloer skated.  No pads either.  That does not mean I do not agree that these safety items are not needed, only that overkill tends to lead to rebelling, or simply ignoring.

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My troop played laser tag at the Airforce Academy and they had a lot of fun. But, it seems, the reasoning behind that ban has nothing to do with safety.

I also don't think a "slight concussion" is anything to brag about nor sue anyone over.

My guess is that one reason for the draconian rules is the fact that unit leaders have zero consequences for going rogue. Everyone knows of troops that don't participate in any district or council activities, thumb their noses at all the rules and will just do as they please. And probably most do fine but some get into a lot of trouble. Adults driving scouts drunk, taking canoes on rapids way beyond their abilities, or just camping in situations beyond their abilities. Or leaders skimming bank accounts. And that trouble spills over to the rest of us trying to do the right thing. In our council, there was a subset of LDS units that kept the pros quite busy from the in-oove-tthei-heads type of problem. If you're an okay troop that wants to improve then the DE has no time for you because all they do is go around fixing problems.

Given this environment, the draconian rules are not really a surprise. Unit quality is the issue. I like @sierracharliescouter's approach of better training but without better consistency of unit leaders being more humble, or whatever it takes to appreciate their limits, we are where we are.

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2 minutes ago, MattR said:

Everyone knows of troops that don't participate in any district or council activities, thumb their noses at all the rules and will just do as they please.

We don't participate primarily because this is where we see some of the most egregious violations.

It is bad enough at summer camp when the camp's adult leaders don't even follow the rules.  Thunderstorms is one of the biggest issues.

"Yes, I hear the thunder, but no, we aren't closing down the program areas... that storm is not going to come over us."

SMH

Here are the results of a similar incident...

https://www.latimes.com/archives/la-xpm-2006-jun-16-na-scouts16-story.html

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2 hours ago, Eagle1993 said:

Yeah, that is a bit odd.  Though there are no gaga pits at the schools in my area (at least town) and the one at the scout camp we went to was removed.  However, they appear to be more common than schools playing dodgeball.   I'm not sure why gaga is considered safer than dodgeball.

Because in Gagaball you aren't allowed to throw the ball, only hit it while bent over, which means the amount of force that can be exerted is severely limited.  Plus, the space is limited, which means the chance for the ball to arc up high enough to hit above the waist is low.  In 10 years of Cubs and Scouts, every injury I've ever seen in Gagaball is either from someone just getting jostled and falling down, or someone trying to jump/climb out of the pit and falling over the wall.  (or banging their hand into the ground or wall trying to hit the ball)

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@InquisitiveScouter

Councils that don't follow rules is another thread. Case in point,  camp MB counselors that aren't certified counselors. Ever notice that the best MBs are usually the ones that require certified counselors? Shooting, water, climbing - they're all inherently dangerous and therefore exciting. Further, with well trained leaders they are great ways to fulfill scouting. That sounds like a better approach to safety that also accounts for the needs of scouts.

 

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2 hours ago, InquisitiveScouter said:

We don't participate primarily because this is where we see some of the most egregious violations.

It is bad enough at summer camp when the camp's adult leaders don't even follow the rules.  Thunderstorms is one of the biggest issues.

"Yes, I hear the thunder, but no, we aren't closing down the program areas... that storm is not going to come over us."

SMH

Here are the results of a similar incident...

https://www.latimes.com/archives/la-xpm-2006-jun-16-na-scouts16-story.html

District / Council level events can almost be a waste of time.  

In Oct we went to a Webelos Woods and one the of the Troop led rotations was "Hiking".  The Scout presenting told Cub Scout Webelos, if bitten by a snake to kill the snake, cut off its head and take it to the hospital with you so they can see what it is.  

This past summer, I saw pictures from our Council Resident Camp for Cubs, not Webelos Resident Camp.  There were Scouts showing Cub Scouts....   squirting lighter fluid into a charcoal chimney.  I am unsure what they were "teaching", but I hope and pray none of ours were paying any attention that day.

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15 minutes ago, 5thGenTexan said:

  There were Scouts showing Cub Scouts....   squirting lighter fluid into a charcoal chimney.  I am unsure what they were "teaching", but I hope and pray none of ours were paying any attention that day.

Hmm.. I've been known to say "Ok guys, this is not the way to do this, so cover your eyes" when I'm using lighter fluid with the charcoal chimney.  I probably need to look up tips on getting all the coals hot at the same time.  Fortunately, the scouts aren't supposed to use liquid accelerants anyway. 

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No one has been able to answer the question of why BSA thinks that Scouts today are less capable than their peers 100 years ago.  The organization would have died out if the same rules were in place, yet this seems of little consequence.  Why can't a patrol go camping?  Page 18 of the 9th edition of the Boy Scout Handbook says, "The goal of a patrol should be to be so well trained in camping that it can take off on its own overnights."  Why are we assuming youth have become enfeebled in the past 36 years?  

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55 minutes ago, elitts said:

Hmm.. I've been known to say "Ok guys, this is not the way to do this, so cover your eyes" when I'm using lighter fluid with the charcoal chimney.  I probably need to look up tips on getting all the coals hot at the same time.  Fortunately, the scouts aren't supposed to use liquid accelerants anyway. 

I can get a charcoal chimney just fine with some paper. :)  Probably faster than lighter fluid. ;)

I wont even let my Webelos and AOL start a fire with a match.  When I do fires in camp, I dont even use a match.  

Its a sore spot for me to see lighter fluid in the world.  😁

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17 minutes ago, 5thGenTexan said:

I can get a charcoal chimney just fine with some paper. :)  Probably faster than lighter fluid. ;)

I wont even let my Webelos and AOL start a fire with a match.  When I do fires in camp, I dont even use a match.  

Its a sore spot for me to see lighter fluid in the world.  😁

What are you using, flint and steel?  9V battery and steel wool?

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10 minutes ago, Armymutt said:

What are you using, flint and steel?  9V battery and steel wool?

I use a ferro rod with a dry cotton ball and vaseline cotton ball for my fires.

I light the stove and a charcoal chimney with a flick a flame thingy.

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