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Troop Elections

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The boys have troop elections coming up next week. This will be our first election since becoming a much larger troop, and I would like for it to be a special event.

 

Anybody have any good tips, and maybe what not to do, for a fun and productive election night?

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Get a copy of your local ballot for this November and have a practice election. See who the scouts would elect.

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Maybe those running can do a little campaigning too. Hopefully in a little more Scout like fashion than the presidential candidates have been.

 

Ask the SPL candidates if they would like to address the troop to explain why they should be SPL.

Same for PLs talking to their patrols.

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Hmmm... That debate format could prove interesting. Might have some grit rise to the surface!

 

I think at a minimum they should make a statement in front of the troop, and tell them what they are going to do in their term. How many PLC's they will be at, how many campouts they will lead.

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I would be afraid the debate could run negative pretty easily. We have the boys address the Troop. Last time we asked them to discuss their strengths and weaknesses, and tell the guys why they thought they should be SPL. I was impressed with how insightful some of them were about strengths and weaknesses and how they affect the troop. The boy who won was the only one who had well prepared with a 60 second speech about what he planned on doing for the troop. I think the speech helps weed out the guys who want the resume entry but haven't thought about the responsibility.

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If the debate would run negative pretty easily, maybe there are some major problems or people not doing their jobs that is obvious to all that will be brought up. Suppressing freedom of speech isn't teaching American citizenship. Forcing only positive statements isn't teaching it either.

 

We live in a competitive, capitalist, free country where citizens can go negative if they want. So let it happen.

 

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Debate or a five minute speech from each on why they deserve a scouts' vote, both would work.

 

As mentioned above, comm skills and citizenship, can't go wrong.

 

HS debate teams teach strong but civil tactics. Our scouts should not have any trouble learning the principles.

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I would suggest speeches of 2-3 minutes, tops, but ultimately I would leave it up to the boys. Our elections are usually run either by the outgoing SPL, or if the SPL is running for re-election, by a JASM or former SPL, and they pretty much run it however they run it. It is a tradition in our troop that the adults do not say a word to the boys during the entire election process. The way it was run this year made me a little nervous (it seemed kind of chaotic and I couldn't quite figure out what they were actually doing) but the resulting SPL was the one I would have voted for if I had a vote, so all's well that ends well.

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