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Context is everything of course, but if we're talking about the real deal and not some overly prudish adult's worry that Johnny used a bad word or drew a silly stick figure in the dirt, then I don't care if they're 500 miles away. Parents can come get their little darling.

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Lisabob, I agree that context is important but it isn't everything. To make a judgement, content is also important and the comparison you just made is one largely of content, not context.


I also suspect that there are some things that all of us would agree are the 'real deal' but there is also probably a gray area where an unrestricted magazine qualifies as the 'real deal' for some but for others it is merely silliness (your other characterization).


I see the real problem in terms of the need for the boys to develop healthy minds and judgement. We can't necessarily do that merely by restricting access to whatever media we control. We also have to teach them (with a capital 'T') to be able to make good choices on their own.


Edited part: Lisabob, I just realized that my post could be viewed as a strong disagreement. I didn't mean it to be taken that way. I was trying to clarify and expand on your post.(This message has been edited by packsaddle)

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I think there is a distinction in that it is legal to possess Playboy magazine but the hardcore on the phone may constitute illegal underage material. The sexting is a huge issue in that it may be a felony to even possess. Something to think about when you are confiscating the phone is that now you are in possession of that material. A girly magazine, while wrong by the standards of the Scout Oath and Law does not carry the legal ramifications of the cell phone porn.


On a lighter note. A few years ago a couple of us were doing a campsite inspection. On the bunk of an older scout was what appeared to be a "gentleman's magazine". I didn't recognize it but it appeared to be on the order of Maxim. Nothing dirty, just mildly suggestive.


Another ASM and I stood there while the SM rounded up the two scouts that shared the tent. While we were waiting it struck me that something didn't look quite right. As the SM and the scouts returned I turned the magazine over to discover that it was a gag cover printed on the back of a Mad Magazine. Clearly the scouts had set us up to see what would happen. Maybe we should have reacted differently and taken it more seriously but we all had a good laugh and left it at that.


We have had issues with language and inappropriate conversation which we deal with as the severity dictates but so far (knock on wood) no issues with porn.

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I'm curious: have any of you actually sent a Scout home from a trip because you found porn in his kit?


The public humiliation, shame, and his anger would almost certainly mean that you would be seeing that Scout for the last time. Has anyone in this forum hung a scarlet letter on a boy and had that boy return to the group that so branded him?


Any kids I know would choose to hang out with their other school friends and talk about how 'up-tight' the Boy Scouts were.


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So, JoeBob, how would you handle hard core porn at camp, or a phone full of sextext's pictures? Would you be willing to risk your charter because you didn't want your troop to appear "up-tight" about porn? Sextext pictures of under age youth are illegal (they are considered to be child-porn), and being an adult on the campout you would be responsible.


How about if this material is found, have a SM conf with the Scout(s)(MAKE SURE THAT YOU HAVE ANOTHER ADULT WITH YOU), have the Scout delete the material and then confiscate the devices, and return it at the end of the campout (or meeting). Teach that this sort of material is not proper for youth to have and ask a simple question like "how would they feel if their sister or cousin or someone that they knew were in those pictures?. (Don't they have to lie and state that they are 18 or older to get this junk?)

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A few years ago at summer camp I was wandering around our campsite, looking things over ahead of a visit from the Commissioner to do a campsite inspection. I spotted some stuff sticking out the back of a tent. I pulled it out and "Hello Miss October". Fortunately it was an issue I hadn't seen. I asked the two occupants of the tent about it. One rolled over on the other immediately. I didn't send the offender home, but told him I was going to mention it to his Mother when she came to get him. I think he would have rather had a whipping. Mom showed up and I told her. She promised to get into it with Jr. She said he had probably swiped it from a stack dear old Dad had in the garage. End of story and last time it's come up.

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Had that problem at JLT. Guy taped a Playboy to his leg and got caught. SM of the course did a SM conference with him, confiscated the magazine, and did tell him mom when she showed up at the end of the week. Mom thought it was funny. We didn't try to embarrass the guy, in fact we tried to be as discreet as possible, but word did get around. He got the nickname "Hugh Hefner" for the rest of the course by his patrol.


In reference o where they are getting the images. If it's sexting, then it's usually via their email or whatever program the phone uses, and the pics are usually their girlfriend, their friend's girlfriend, or a teenager not smart enough to realize what they have done. We've had problems with the computers at work, and even when you DELETE something, until the memory is fully swiped, it's possible to get that info back.

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None of the above actions are the best course of action, really.


You are not going to make the scout stop in the long run. All his friends do it too.


To illustrate my point, I will use a real life example involving a teacher and Freshman boys.


Teacher borrows student a's phone on a car trip to use the internet, as he had unlimited internet usage. She and student b are trying to look up the phone # for a hotel they were going to stay at. They saw porn links in the browser history of the student a's phone and even clicked on one (accidentally I assume).


Point is, student a could not argue about the posession and what could the teacher do?


She could punish student a .... but she was the one that asked to borrow his phone in the first place. Plus, that would only make student a hide it even better next time.


In fact, she was even able to get the other Freshman guys to stop needling him about it by stating that "So you've never looked at it before, lets search your phone/computer" and "I don't want him to be embaressed every time he sees me in class again".


The other freshman truly believed that they would be found guilty if their stuff was searched. Nothing more was said about this by anyone probably a day after it happened.


Does he still look? Yes. Does everyone else? Yes. Did the teacher handle it in the most friendly and non-demeaning way? Yes.



One more thing, Kids are smart these days. I have never seen an incoming freshman class before that knew so much about hiding history on the internet.



Finally, don't bother the kid about it. The only thing he will learn is to be more careful around you with it. Not to stop it.

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There is a time and a place for ... most things. Scouting is not it. Fact is, parents (especially of younger scouts) do not expect that their child will be exposed to that sort of stuff in a scouting environment. Adult leaders who just look the other way risk losing many families from the troop when word gets around - and it will get around.


Yup, I suppose we scouters are a little uptight. We don't condone recreational drug use even though smoking a joint from time to time is probably no worse for you than an occasional beer, and probably less addicting than a "normal" nicotine cigarette. Oh wait, we don't drink alcohol on scout outings and we strongly discourage smoking regular cigarettes in view of the youth too. Drat, that whole business of being clean of mind and body, mentally awake, and morally straight. Ruins all the fun.



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Ah good. Reason returns.



I'd certainly follow your second course of action. (Thanks for reminding me about 2DL. I normally would handle such a meeting privately, to cut down on the scout's embarrassment. But this is one where CYA is definitely needed.)


I'm one of the 'No Electronics in the Woods' clan. So my position is based on the assumption that we're talking about a Playboy mag smuggled in to giggle over with friends.

This whole discussion might dampen the desire to confiscate phones for the duration of a trip. If porn is on the phone, and the confiscated phone is in your possession, are you a felon? Can you hear the prosecuting attorney: "So, Mr. Scoutmaster, you confiscated all these boys' phones so that you could enjoy the personal photos of their girlfriends in the privacy of your own tent?"


LisaBob Said: "Drat, that whole business of being clean of mind and body, mentally awake, and morally straight. Ruins all the fun."

We can debate the degree of dirty mind needed to view pronorgraphy. All male members of the forum who have never viewed a photo of a nekkid lady, please raise your hand... Adam and Eve started the world nude, so it can't be too bad. It's your attitude towards nudity that makes it 'dirty'.

Mentally awake? Do folks regularly fall asleep in strip clubs? With 'Morally straight' you have a point, except with troops sponsored by nudists. (Anyone?) Everyone involved with Scouting must adhere 100% to the morals of the majority. So, if you've ever exceeded the 55 MPH speed limit, turn in your car keys.


I do think that Child porno (harmful to the minor in the material) and a repeat offense in disobedience of an earlier warning are cause for sending the Scout home, and in effect booting them from the troop. I just get irate when I observe hypocritical over-reaction to a victimless crime.







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I'm with Lisa and Ed on this one as well.


I draw the line at nudity. That means Playboy is the kick-in point.


More urgent is softcore porn.


More urgent still is hardcore porn.


The most urgent of all, to me, is sexting. Young people do not realize they're bouncing, immediately, into high order Federal violations. A child porn offense ruins a life.


It goes back to Scripture in my mind: All things are possible, not all are right.

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Was it Justice Blackman who said he couldn't define pornography, but he knew it when he saw it?


There are pictures of naked ladies (I suppose they would qualify as nekkid)and then there is porn. Yes, context and content matter.


However one of the prime context issues is that we are talking about a Scout function. There are much younger boys around which we have to consider. One of the reasons parents entrust their sons to us is that we do have higher standards of behavior. You may call it stuffy, uptight or prudish, but you can also call it Scoutlike.



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There were two brothers who wanted to go see a particular movie that they know had some inappropriate scenes in it their parents would not approve of. Their parents didn't allow their kids to see these movies for the bad content. The brothers then tried to be logical with their parents. They knew the movie had a few inappropriate parts, but the overall message of the movie is very positive, and surely one or two small negatives would not be such a big deal, the negatives would be outweighed by all the good things and overall positive message of the movie. The parents said to give them a couple hours to think it over.


So a couple hours later the brothers confront their parents. Mom offers them some fresh homemade brownies, but they can't eat them until they hear dad's story. Dad begins to explain. He says, like the movie, the brownies are mostly good, made with quality chocolate, fresh eggs and filtered water. Also like the movie, the brownies have a very small, practically minute bad part. See, dad put a little bit of dog poop from the yard in the brownie mix. Now, the dog poop was mixed with all of the good things, so surely they would not be able to taste it. Also, it was bake din a 350 degree oven, so any germs would be killed. It would be completely safe to eat, even the dog eats it's own poop and is healthy.


Dad says if they eat their poopy brownie, they can go to the movie. Neither boy eats his brownie. Then dad explains how how if you eat the brownie, sure you may be ingesting some negative things, but they will pass through your system in a short amount of time and be gone. Inappropriate content that they see, whether on purpose or accidentally, stays with them forever.


I wish I could remember where I heard that story from to give the author proper credit.

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