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Trevorum

LDS Scouts in mainstream units

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Hi Schleining,

 

Better than cable TV, isn't it? :) "Meet us next week for our next episode".......

 

I think it's pretty cool that I can write about 5 lines and Bob will turn it into a full page of responses. Kind of like the multiplying of the loaves and the fishes or something.....

 

It's interesting to know that some folks are hanging on my every word, (literally, I think) I guess, but sheesh......

 

For the rest of you I've had more pleasant conversations with, you should know that (1), I've been a leader for 8 years, (2) I've had all the training, and them some, (3), I've actually read the books, and (4) I've been complimented up to the Council level for running successful programs.

 

After reading Tort's comments, I'm confident that the LDS troops are doing just fine.

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Prairie

If you have facts that dispute any of the facts I have presented please share them.

 

If your only point is to demean me in general then that is inappropriate to the topic of the thread and to the purpose of the forum.

 

I have no problem with anyone wanting to debate a point. But to lack facts and supplement them with personal comments about another poster does nothing to support your position on the topic.

 

 

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Bob,

Rather than try to respond, I'm just going to say that since I can't seem to have a pleasant discussion with you, I'm going to take the "ignore this user" forum option. I'm sure that others have interesting discussions with you, but I seem to be unable to. This seems to me to be the best way to retain my own enjoyment of the forums.

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Okay, it has been some time so I figured I might as well chime in and get slapped around a little. After reading all the posts I do not understand the difference between one CO being able to "adjust" rules and other CO's or troops being chastised for it. An example of this is a recent post to a thread I made indicating I had a set of troop bylaws (which some agreed with, some didn't) and in those bylaws I had a statement that only 5 bluecards could be out at one time. Many people disagreed with this rule because it was not allowing the scouts to have as many bluecards out as desired and was against BSA policy. After reading the responses to the post I agree that the scouts should not be limited to the number of bluecards, revisited the bylaws with the committee and changed this rule. The rest of the bylaws were all statements taken from the SM handbook and G2SS so they remained. Now I read statements like "just because a program is different it isn't bad, just different" by the same people that state you should not defer from the BSA program at all. How does denying a scout the opportunity to camp differ from denying a scout the opportunity to work on 50 merit badges? How does denying women to camp with their son differ from recent posts stating that BSA rules are such that no parent will be denyed the opportunity to camp with their child?

 

I was unaware that scout leaders were asked to be leaders instead of volunteering but it now makes sense. One of my workmates is a CM for a LDS pack. In recent discussions I ahve noticed that he really doesn't have his heart in this position. One example was the talk we had the other day about cross over and he told me that he didn't have time to do anything for the boys who earned arrow of light which were crossing over. I told him I thought it pretty important to recognize these boys and even offered to have some arrows made up for the boys but he refused. It seemed he just didn't care about the position he was in. I would site this as an example of "filling the empty seat." On the the other hand, another person that I work with was an ASM and CC for a LDS troop. Talking to him about scouting I see he has the desire and knowledge to perform both tasks well.

Our council has implemented a LDS week for summer camp. I feel this is wrong because it limits the number of selections for scouts of other religious backgrounds as the other camps fill up rapidly. I realize the LDS community in scouting is very strong but do not believe that rules should be changed or summer camps set aside for one particular religion no matter what that religion is.

 

 

On the positive side. I think it is great that the church is so involved in scouting and they really support their scouts. I truly wish other religions backed scouting like the LDS do.

 

Okay, I am now braced, fire away.

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t487, I had many of the same thoughts you express. Thanks for "verbalizing" them, I wasn't sure how to say it. I do see a definite double standard playing out. As you indicate, this is not a slam against the LDS, but rather against the double standard.

 

Vicki

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Ooooooh, T487!!!

 

Actually, even as an LDS Scouter I appreciate your post. I think LDS Scouters need to hear that - which is one reason I WISH the BSA would be able to be more assertive with out-of-sync units than they are.

 

>How does denying a scout the opportunity to camp differ from denying a scout the opportunity to work on 50 merit badges?

 

Well, to address this specifically there is no BSA requirement that women (or mothers) be allowed to camp with the Boy Scouts. The BSA ALLOWS it, but does not require it.

 

>In recent discussions I ahve noticed that he really doesn't have his heart in this position. One example was the talk we had the other day about cross over and he told me that he didn't have time to do anything for the boys who earned arrow of light which were crossing over. I told him I thought it pretty important to recognize these boys and even offered to have some arrows made up for the boys but he refused. It seemed he just didn't care about the position he was in. I would site this as an example of "filling the empty seat."

 

And I wish there was a way for the BSA to "officially" inform the ward leadership when an LDS Scouter was not fulfilling his calling/position. Sounds like a new discussion (seriously).

 

>Our council has implemented a LDS week for summer camp. I feel this is wrong because it limits the number of selections for scouts of other religious backgrounds as the other camps fill up rapidly. I realize the LDS community in scouting is very strong but do not believe that rules should be changed or summer camps set aside for one particular religion no matter what that religion is.

 

I agree if the scouts are put at detriment. I disagree if the BSA is attempting to meet the needs of a large number of BSA units, where such needs result due to the religious beliefs of the sponsoring organizations. In other words, let's say that a BSA camp setup one week each summer where camp went from Sunday through Friday to accomodate Jews. Would that not be okay?

 

In our own council (and also in Golden Empire Council where I grew up), they designated one week each month for LDS units. Non-LDS units could also attend if the LDS units did not fill the camp. Also, the councils condition the set aside on the LDS units actually providing enough units to make it worthwhile.

 

Similarly on Woodbadge, SHAC recently held a week-long training without a Sunday overnighter. The purpose was to allow LDS leaders to attend without missing camping on Sunday. However, only about 25 or so LDS leaders showed up, about 10 or 20 non-LDS, and as a consequence SHAC decided not to do it again the next year.

 

Sounds right to me. If the LDS leaders want to be accommodated by the BSA, they had best take advantage of it or live with the consequences. In those accomodations, nothing is being done against the policies/standards of the BSA. It's just flexibility within those rules.

 

I don't see why that's wrong (or unfair). I see reasonable accommodations while not breaking the rules as being "kind".(This message has been edited by tortdog)

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t487 wrote >I feel this is wrong because it limits the number of selections for scouts of other religious backgrounds as the other camps fill up rapidly.>

 

tort, without trying to put words in his mouth, speaking strictly for myself, I think I understand what t487 is saying. From my perspective it would be OK if our council had more space - there is such a shortage of available space in our Boy Scout camp that to take one week out of the "camp lottery" to accommodate one specific, albeit large, group would be tantamount to discriminating against anyone who didn't belong to that group.

 

Vicki

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That is a prefectly reasonable question and it has a perfectly reasonable answer.

 

The difference is in who made the program alterations. In the case of you deciding to limit scouts to 5 merit badge opportunities at a time, you made the rule, and you do not have the authority to change BSA advancement policies.

 

In the case of the modified program for the LDS church. The BSA made the alterations. The were developed by the BSA on a national basis for the LDS churches specific needs rrether than one persons preference, and they were approved by the BSA executive committee who do have the authority to make said changes where as you and your troop do not.

 

There are indeed specific areas where a CO can customize the program to fit the specific and unique local needs. Advancement is not one of them.

 

I hope this clarifies things. It was a good question. Thanks for asking it.

 

BW

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Vicki, if the LDS units are not at a LDS week during scout camp, they will be clogging up the spaces on the other weeks (just arriving late to allow Sunday worship). The LDS units don't stay home if there isn't an LDS week at scout camp.

 

Now, are the non-LDS units prohibited from participating during the LDS week? If so, I could see the argument if there was not enough room during other weeks (if the LDS units did not fill that one week up).

 

If you look at it this way, however, about 20% of the BSA units are LDS. If a BSA camp dedicated 20% of the slots to the LDS units, the LDS units would have more than just one week. It would have 20% of the summer, or almost one week each month.

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"Well, to address this specifically there is no BSA requirement that women (or mothers) be allowed to camp with the Boy Scouts. The BSA ALLOWS it, but does not require it."

 

I could very well be wrong here but I thought the BSA did have a rule that parents will not be denied access to any BSA event. Again this is from a memory which seems to dump more info than it retains.

 

As for the disinterested scouter, I finally convinced him that he needs to become involved or find another person to be CM and he agreed. It was not fair for the boys who worked so hard.

 

No matter what religion, I do not feel it is right to offer a councils property to one specific group. I have talked to the council about this and they tell me that anyone is welcome but I know for a fact that other groups do not know this. I also know in the past chapel has been geared towards LDS which is great for those who are LDS but not non-denominational as the rest of the camps are. Like I said before, my post like all others I see here are not against the LDS religion, instead I feel that all members of BSA should be treated the same and not given specific privileges that others can't receive. The reason I brought up the camp is the fact that camps fill up early in my council. Many reservations have already been made for 2006. If you don't get in early enough, you won't be able to camp and now we have just bottlenecked this process further by labeling one week of camp "LSD Week"

 

Bob, I realize also that BSA has agreed to these rules and accepted them unlike the my rule about bluecards. I appreciate everyone bringing this to my attention and this has been changed. But it is also somewhat contradictory when BSA QU requires x number of boys to attend summer camp yet young LDS boys can't. Here they are saying they want everyone else except LDS to send their boys.

 

I feel if BSA is going to make exceptions to the rules and desires of the organization then they need to weigh those decisions and make them for the whole. For example, if BSA feels women should not camp with their son it needs to be a BSA rule for all troops. If BSA is okay with this then they should request that LDS troops allow moms to camp with their sons. I am particularly bothered by this rule. There are a lot of great women scouters out there and I am sure there are many that would like this opportunity.

 

Same with the requirements of camping for QU. If BSA feels that young boys should attend summer camp, they should request LDS send the boys just like they hound our troop to do. If it is not important, then remove this requirement from QU.

 

Again, this is not meant to be anti LDS, I just feel that everyone that belongs to BSA should be treated the same. If a rule is made by BSA, it should apply to everyone.

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Tortdog, I think I would be better to answer this question since it is happening in my council and I posted the original. It is not that LDS are "clogging" up the camps or that they are not participating. The problem is with the other camp dates. 75% of the other camps were completely full and the LDS Week camp was only 20% full. It has since been filling up but everyone else has to get their reservations in 8 mos in advance to get the spot they want (including the LDS units that can't make their camp date) Also, no, the other units are not shunned from this week of camp. As everyone knows, you can't please everyone. Chapel is supposed to be non-denominational to include the majority of participants. My question is why even label a camp? The camp has been shortened by one day but for what reason? What has been gained by doing this? Why not have all camps run the same time, if a group cannot attend Saturday, no problem, see you Sunday or leave Friday. If a group cannot attend Sunday, no problem, see you Monday.

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t487scouter, you are jumping to some very incorrect conclusions here!

 

Bob, I realize also that BSA has agreed to these rules and accepted them

 

More than that... the BSA MADE these modifications.

 

But it is also somewhat contradictory when BSA QU requires x number of boys to attend summer camp

 

No they don't! They require that the troop attend summer camp. no specific number of boys is required.

 

yet young LDS boys can't.

 

Sure they can. They have the choice to attend locally or to attend a camp outside the council approved by their local council.

 

Here they are saying they want everyone else except LDS to send their boys.

Not at all, an LDS troop must still have a long term camp in order to achieve Quality unit.

 

I feel if BSA is going to make exceptions to the rules and desires of the organization then they need to weigh those decisions and make them for the whole. For example, if BSA feels women should not camp with their son it needs to be a BSA rule for all troops.

 

But the BSA does not say that to ANY unit. They give all COs the choice as to who to select as leaders and allow on campouts. Some choose not to send women, heck if a CO chooses they don't have to send a man. The BSA offeres every CO the same choice they offer the LDS church.

 

I am particularly bothered by this rule. There are a lot of great women scouters out there and I am sure there are many that would like this opportunity.

And they have that opportunity if it is approved by the CO. Women in the LDS church already know and understand this decision it is a part of their belief system as well..

 

Same with the requirements of camping for QU. If BSA feels that young boys should attend summer camp, they should request LDS send the boys just like they hound our troop to do. If it is not important, then remove this requirement from QU.

 

But the BSA does support LDS troops going to camp.

 

Again, this is not meant to be anti LDS, I just feel that everyone that belongs to BSA should be treated the same. If a rule is made by BSA, it should apply to everyone.

 

Nothing you have mentioned so far is a rule. There is no rule that a woman must go camping. There is no rule that a troop must go to summer camp. There is a leadership option that units can choose or not choose. There is an award that troops can choose to earn or choose not to earn. You have not shown an example of a rule that differes between the programs. I know of no rule that does not apply to everyone in an LDS troop and a non-LDS troop.

 

(This message has been edited by Bob White)

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You are right Bob, these are assumptions and probably incorrect. I thought that a certain percentage of scouts were required to attend camp for QU but I am at work and don't have the paperwork with me. It has been my experience (a very limited experience) that more younger boys attend camp than older boys. I just figured by not letting the young scouts attend summer camp that the unit would not be able to reach this goal (I thought it was someting like 80%)

 

You also state that all boys can attend summer camp. I thought I had read in a past post that young scouts were limited to 2 or 3 days. Again, maybe I just imagined this and don't have time to go back and look.

 

As for the no women rule. Is it not a BSA rule that parents cannot be excluded from a BSA activity? Again, this is from memory.

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t487,

 

Just in regards to your question about parents participating, there is a section in the Guide to Safe Scouting, I think the area about "secret organizations" that says that all Scout activities are open to observation by the parents.

 

Regards the length of camps for younger Scouts, I don't remember the specific rules and don't have them right in front of me, but Scouts normally start camping with their units as Webelos Scouts, and those outings are usually 1 or 2 nights. I think there is also a Resident Camp that Webelos Scouts can go to that runs longer, but I'm not entirely sure about that.

 

Regards QU, on the boy scout side, there is a requirement to have a certain number of outdoor activities, but it doesn't say anything about how many have to participate. They do have to attend a summer camp as well.

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Prairie, in our council there's a mini-camp (2 nights) for the Webelos 1 (between 3rd and 4th grades) and a week long resident camp for the Webelos 2 (between 4th and 5th grades). Totally separate facility from the Boy Scout camp.

 

Vicki

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