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Bad Manners displayed by Adults

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Gold Winger writes:


There is the question of whether Scouts should remove their caps indoors. There's a website out there someplace with discussion of that topic. There are pictures in old handbooks showing Scouts in meetings wearing their hats.


That would be The Kudu Net, of course.


I scanned 33 photographs and drawings from official BSA handbooks showing Scouters, Scouts, Sea Scouts, and Dan Beard (one of the BSA's founders) all wearing Scout hats indoors during both formal and informal activities, including church services and service projects in churches.


One interesting detail is that when the BSA switched to field caps, the illustrations of people wearing campaign hats indoors were painstakingly redrawn and the photographs were carefully re-shot to show everyone all wearing the new hats indoors!




I guess "bad manners" aren't what they used to be :-/




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A scout hat is part of the uniform indoors or outdoors. If it is not worn the scout is out of uniform.


To illustrate the lack of understanding on this, my boys at summer camp were asked by camp staff specifically to remove their hats at the outdoor flag ceremony. They were the BSA Expedition hats and they refused to remove them because it was conveyed to the camp staff that wearing BSA hats was required if it's part of a troop's uniform.


The staff researched it and publically apologized to the boys and noted to the rest of the campers that if it's part of a troop uniform the boys are expecteded to wear it to be in full uniform.



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Hats are interesting. I remember that when I was in the Air Force, there was a detailed series of rules on when one did and did not wear the hat. The Navy had an even longer series of rules.


I am also a bit surprised that no one has mentioned the current recommended way in the BSA of preparing for prayer. The leader is recommended to say "Please prepare to pray according to your tradition." Those who want to remove hats do so; those who leave them on do so.


As far as hats in church, I remember from my youth in Catholic churches that men were not to wear head cover and women had to. I can only speculate on why and suspect that the reason is not complimentary to women :)


Courtesy cuts both ways just like loyalty and obedience. If you try to be courteous, according to your tradition and beliefs and the other person chooses not to be courteous, it doesn't diminish you. One can always say "Sir (or Madam as the case may be) I am attempting to be courteous to you. I am sorry if I offended you or if you did not perceive me as courteous."


As far as the men not taking off their hats in an LDS church, if there were a correction to be made, it appropriately should be done by someone who is a member of the church. I am sure that if someone from that church had said "Excuse me, may I ask you to remove your hats. That is the custom in our church." They would have done so. I know that years ago, exactly that was said about smoking in the LDS church and the man stopped.


I would respectfully suggest that one controls one's actions and is courteous in one's own actions. In one's home "turf", one guides others to be courteous and respectful. However, to take offense at another person because they are doing something in a third parties "turf" which is perceived as inappropriate is not courteous. Rather, the courteous thing to do is either to ignore the "offense" or to say privately and respectfully "Excuse me but would you mind removing your hat. I believe that it is the custom in this church to do so."


I one time saw an adult leader walk over to a Scout during an interfaith service and rip the hat off a boy saying "Take off your hat. Show some respect for God." Turns out the boy was Jewish. The adult had no idea what he was doing. Courtesy is not being offended at what other do; rather it is controlling what we do and doing our best to accomodate and accept others

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