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Cito

Sore subjects

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While I've only been able to contribute for a few weeks, I've been reading the forum for nearly a year. I've noticed that there are clearly several topics that if you bring them up, you'll be sorry.

 

The biggest ones that I see are anything to do with knots or adult recognition, troop over patrol, then maybe wood badge and anything praising National.

 

So, I'll just come out and ask, what subjects are people better off not asking about..?

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You must not be a member of the Tea Party movement. The answer is that there's nothing you can ask that doesn't carry the risk of people ending up arguing about things.

But wait, there's more.....for example you can start with a question about, say, merit badges and end up arguing over whether or not washing hands is affected by BSA membership policy. Is that COOL or what? So it's best if you don't try to understand or make sense out of any of this.

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Sure, there is no telling where threads go, but there are certain topics that are doomed from the word go.

 

Not sure of the Tea Party reference? Want to clarify what you're inferring?

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Sure, you seem to be wanting to avoid conflict. That kind of disqualifies you from the Tea Party doesn't it?

 

As for topics, stay away from the ones you mentioned already, and anything that might belong in Issues and Politics (like that Tea Party thing ;) )

Saying 'hello' isn't going to get much argument. Asking for links to resources is good. Somewhere later asking for skit ideas might generate some argument maybe. Recipes seem to fare well. Favorite books, movies seem good too. I can't remember anyone getting bent out of shape telling embarrassing stories on themselves, or things like that. You'll probably figure this out better on your own though. Good luck.

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I started on this forum because I had a lot of questions about being a crew advisor. I consider myself to be a by-the-book kind of guy, but folks were accusing me of being divisive. Following these threads helped me to iron out sore subjects in my head before "bumping into the issue" in face to face conversation.

 

But for me, I can think of two:

- requiring adults on parol overnight outings

- that unfounded teaching method our boys have to mimic to advance.

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Yah, what packsaddle said, eh? :)

 

I reckon it's just fine to ask about anything, so long as you recognize that we have some "personalities" around an you'll have to sift through the replies a bit to find what you're looking for.

 

I think it helps a bit to be as specific as yeh can in your request, and provide enough background and detail so that folks get a sense for the thing. Otherwise, yeh leave everybody to guess what's behind the curtain, and you'll get the oddest results as different people make different guesses. If you're up front and honest about where you're at, I reckon you'll get a lot of answers of the same sort.

 

At least for the first few pages. ;) After that, unless yeh join back in and ask some more, the thread is goin' to drift like any conversation, as people start responding to each other rather than (just) to you. That can be a fun thing, eh? It's just that scoutin' in the U.S. does have its "camps", and eventually you'll see folks from different camps sawin' our old sawhorses.

 

As to the "National" stuff, I think da first thing yeh have to realize is that the folks 'round here really love Scouting, and workin' with kids. To a man or a woman they're givin' a good piece of their heart, soul, and pocketbook to the greatest youth movement that Planet Earth has ever seen. Every last one of 'em.

 

It's hard sometimes to reconcile deep, personal commitment to Scouting as a youth movement with the Boy Scouts of America Corporation that has a monopoly on the movement in the U.S. That's to be expected, eh? Corporation workplace dynamics and ways of thinkin' are just fundamentally different from volunteers-in-a-movement ways of thinkin'. Some here see BSA, Inc. as being Scouting, since it is the brand of scouting that they are most familiar with and have materials from. Da rest of us come at it from a bit of a different direction, and see both good things from the BSA and some stuff that just drives us completely nuts. And a few are from da old or international schools and just think corporate scouting is an odd American abomination.

 

It's hard sometimes to watch those "conversations" until yeh realize that at the hear of it are just some great people who care passionately about Scouting and kids. Passionately enough to get a bit hot and bothered about doin' it well.

 

Don't run from those folks, eh? Those are the folks who make the very best Scouters, because they care, and they take ownership.

 

So I'd say go ahead and post your questions!

 

If yeh want a list of "stock controversies", though, I'd say:

 

Uniforms & uniforming (full vs. partial, adult awards, dress-designer vs. practical etc.)

Advancement (First Class First Year, "mills"/dumbed down, high expectations vs. "don't add to requirements", etc.)

Membership Requirements (gays and godless mostly, not many co-ed advocates)

The Program Debacle of '72 (not a controversy, actually. Everyone agrees it was dumb, it just still sets people off)

Patrol Method (also not a controversy, just lots of passion on how to do it well)

The Guide to Safe Scouting (meant as a helpful reference, viewed by some as an absolute rulebook, new restrictions being added every 3 months)

Woodbadge (21C vs. "old" WB, The Game of Life, the elitist attitude)

Conservative vs. liberal politics (in various forms, kind of entertainin' if you're in the mood, nice cross-section of America, actually)

 

B

 

 

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I think the only subject you shouldn't bring up is the toilet paper over/under controversy - otherwise, everything is fair game and don't worry about whether what you ask or post will result in someone getting sore because you can bring up fluffy bunnies and run the risk of upsetting someone. Heck, I'll even put my money where my mouth is and bring up the most controversial subject you'll ever see discussed here - even more controversial than the Three G's - and will succeed in inflaming some folks with just two words:

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

 

Red Berets

 

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Cito, my advice would be that if you want to bring something up or ask a question, go ahead and do it and don't worry about the consequences. Keep in mind that if someone reacts in a "negative" way, it may just be that one person's opinion, and their "pet subject." There are a few "regulars" here who seem to get their "agenda" into almost every thread that remotely touches on "their issues," and even some that don't. (And I am not even talking about "Issues & Politics" subjects.) And as Packsaddle said, there is no way to predict (or control) in which direction(s) a thread will end up going anyway. Just jump in when you want to.

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Red Berets !!! What's wrong with Blue, Yellow, or Orange Berets!!! Why do we only have Red Berets.. It clashes with my hairdo..

 

Fluffy Bunnies? Who Fluffed them? Was there animal abuse involved??? Grrr....

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I do have a red beret from my 1987 era scouting. I haven't worn it in 24 years if that means anything.

 

I've also figured out to not mention how old I was when I finished Eagle. :)

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The topics of Scouter Forum are as varied and diverse as the members of Scouter Forum, which is to say varied and diverese. There have been Scouting related forums where the moderator(s) have been heck bent on keeping threads "on topic" and for the most part, those Forums are inactive. Others have the Moderators clearly steer the discussions in specific directions and although my opinion may be a tad biased, I think the moderators here do a good job of not steering threads, heck yeah we will give our opinions, but rarely are threads closed.

 

Cito, I am not sure if you are old enough to remember the movie "Forrest Gump", in the very beginning there is a feather that gently floats down and lands next to Forrest. Threads here are very much like that feather, they may have a general sense of direction, but it doesnt take much to alter their direction. Once a discussion starts, there is no way to determine where and when the discussion will end.

 

There are times when I see what someone has poated and the words of the Immortal Bette Davis as Margo Chaninng burn in my head, "Fasten your seatbelts, its going to be a bumpy ride"

 

Given it may be a bumpy ride, I would hope no one would ever not post their thoughts because of what they perceive the reaction to be. If we cannot be honest and forthright here, then where is that place where we can express ourselves?

 

Within reason of course and I get to choose the boundaries of reason and I think I better think this out again(Ron Moody as Fagin)

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A friend of mine is a moderator on another Scout Forum and they go to great lengths to avoid the 3 G's

God.

Gays.

Girls.

This is to my thinking a mistake.

There have been forum members who have really stirred the pot. Not so much due to the subject, but more because of the way they stated their case.

There have been members who have gone out of their way to upset others.

However for the most part the people who are members now are a group that I wouldn't mind sitting around and talking with face to face.

We don't always see eye to eye.

But that's OK and maybe even a good thing?

Sometimes we or at least me! Are not always fair or kind.

I remember some years back there was a female ASM who posted that she thought it was a good idea that the SPL at summer camp keep track and record when Scouts moved their bowels.

I found this to be not only funny but also really silly.

I posted as much.

Still this lady was really serious and didn't see any of the humor.

I was out of line but just couldn't get the idea of the SPL asking each Scout and thinking what he might end up saying.

Ea.

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An SPL tasked with tracking bowel movements. That deserves its own thread. Any kid who does that for his POR truly earns his next rank. In fact he'd probably become a real fan of the patrol method and putting PL's in charge at 300' in a real hurry.

 

In any case, its good to see a sense of humor in the thread. I'm certainly not worried about stirring the pot, just want to make sure people want to ask questions. Keeps it far more interesting.

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Anything can be a topic of heated discussion here. If you don't want to stir up discussion, why are you posting?

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