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Tampa Turtle

Help! Can you have a toxic scout?

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The other side of this issue is the leaders. While one just commented that a Scoutmaster may have a calling, and many, if not most do, I can tell you that many if not most ASM's do not share the same enthusiasm or calling (from what I've seen).

 

Yep, our troop lost a bunch of those guys, and we're better for it. (And I say that with a world of respect for them as they went and started their own troop with its own set of problems.)

 

Part of being an ASM is making sure the SM doesn't bend too far for a kid. I've offered to ride a bad kid home when push was coming to shove. Would've ruined my weekend, but all options needed to be available to the guy so he could make an effective decision.

 

SP if this kid is as insistently thuggish as you think he is, TT's troop may have to be a revolving door for a while, with repeated suspensions until the kid shapes up or ships out. Only he knows if the SM is up for the challenge of keeping the kid around. The timbre of the SPL at the time makes a huge difference. This year our SPLs are kinda weak, so I think a bad kid would be more likely to see himself shipped home. But, you never know until the situation is in front of you.

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Hello Basement,

 

 

I don't see this as a matter of race or class. I see it as an issue of a boy actively subverting the values of Scouting in ways that are actively harming other boys and could easily threaten adult leaders as well.

 

Knowing when to fish and when to cut bait are both necessary skills. Mostly we fish. If we fish when we should be cutting bait we are subverting our values, undermining our unit and threatening the safety of all concerned.

 

From the comments made in this thread, I'd say it's time to cut bait. I'd suspend the boy for 30 days and then give him another opportunity to see if he wants to live the Scout Law.

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Oh this is very much a race and class issue........

 

Class or societal norms are very different between a home on welfare or working poor and folks in the Suburbs of Dallas or Atlanta......

 

We have some well mannered boys, but we also have some boys, I bet most of you would discard.

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>>We have some well mannered boys, but we also have some boys, I bet most of you would discard.

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Some of our most serious trouble makers came from the perfect looking white upper middle class families. They are no longer in the Troop.

 

Some of the best Scouts now in our Troop are minorities from single mom families. They set an excellent example for the rest of the Scouts.

 

The difference between the two? The boy who wants to be a Scout, irregardless of class or race, tends to follow the Scout Law, enjoy outings, and contribute to the good of the Troop.

 

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basement, I hope you aren't reading my posts in that frame. The "toxic" kid I'm describing IS white, upper middle class, from a fairly wealthy exurban community that is lacking in diversity of any sort (race, class, religious, political, you name it). His major targets were boys who didn't fit his background or outlook, and boys who were easily ostracized for other reasons. The final straw for me was when the "toxic" scout went down the path of spouting racist garbage all over the place (extolling Hitler and Nazis, talking favorably about the KKK - which has a presence in that town to this day, calling non-white people obviously offensive names, verbally fantasizing about white supremacist movements, their tactics, and their goals, etc.). The racist stuff was directed at the only minority boy in the troop.

 

It was appalling to me, not only that this boy was doing this (physically sickening in the way qwaze describes - makes me want to vomit, not just makes me angry), but worse, that most of the troop adults found it acceptable to excuse this repeated behavior - among many other repeated behaviors by the same kid, and by his parents too. Because of this, I resigned my position with the troop - I couldn't be party to that garbage and was severely disappointed in the rest of the troop leadership for being unwilling to do anything about it. Either they did not understand the serious impact of what this kid was doing on other boys, or they were afraid to stand up to his (toxic) parents, or both. It wasn't something I could accept. Unfortunately, I lost some friends over it. People who are generally good and kind, but just couldn't get this.

 

 

 

 

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Basement,

 

I think you are trying to pull class and race issues into a discussion that has nothing to do with class and race. This is a manipulative boy who is harming the troop. The issue is how much of that harm does the troop allow, in the name of helping the miscreant, before worrying about the harm done to the rest of the boys.

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First off, GREAT discussion and I want to thank from the bottom of my shell all the advice. This kid does come from a good background; I do think it is a manipulative sort of thing. Apparently had his Tenderfoot BOR and there was an almost hour long discussion on Scout Oath and Law. I do not know if he passed or not. I do know his minor POR is in jeopardy as well as his PL is reassessing his choice. (he can be charming) Funny thing is his Patrol mates see things once he is away -- "why were we so mad at Taylor? He is a nice guy..." and they start to catch on. So I take that as a good sign.

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TT: I think I might have been the scout you're talking about back in the day...

 

If that's any indication, teaching the other patrol members how to ignore that kind of manipulation or bullying instead of following along with it will help more than trying to address the kid or the parents directly.

 

He'll stop doing it if people stop giving reinforcement to the actions.

 

Consider his attitude as a product. If you react to the product, you've purchased it from him. If he cannot sell his product, he will adjust it until it sells or will leave the market.

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The basis of the program is trust and an underlying desire to follow the Oath and Law.

 

I've always thought Scouting was cumulative, meaning the first thing we teach the Cubs, "Do Your Best," continues to apply all the way through. If the Scout and his family won't TRY to live up to the ideals, I don't think the program has much to offer them.

 

Sometimes I think the lesson we are best at teaching kids like this is how to take their behavior underground and not get caught. I hope that doesn't become the case.

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I do not know WHAT the SM told him but he is avoiding me like the plague. I bumped into him at church and it was like I had a repulser ray. Funny as heck.

 

He seems a bit chastised around the other boys. I think they got his number. So maybe there is hope. I still will tell the other adults at camp. I strongly suspect a return of old behavior.

 

Also the COH is upon us and he needs me to sign off on some knot requirements; so I am and make sure I am near other adults and am kind, formal, and professional--killing him with kindness. But trust em? Nahh.

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