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Postby ASM-142 » Wed May 18, 2005 12:08 pm

Buffalo Bill wrote:We've put it in writing for our Troop. 2nd Class and below: Scout shirt with neat, clean, properly fitting, shorts or pants is OK.


Once you put it inot writing that not wearing scout shorts or pants is allowed then you are altering the scout uniform which is not allowed.
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Postby Buffalo Bill » Wed May 18, 2005 1:52 pm

Please oh please, don't call the uniform police! Whatever will we do!

We provided the option to open the program to more boys whose parents are unable, or unwilling, to provide for full uniform. I'd rather have boys show up in at least their shirts than not at all. After 20+ years as an adult leader, I've found that offering incentives to wear the uniform work better than dictatorial edicts. Honor guards and such wear full uniform--gets the younger ones eager to procure all items early--"So, you'd like to be part of (insert group here). Sure, but you'll need full uniform first."

Uniforming is but one of the methods of Scouting, no more critical than any of the other methods. Thank heavens the founders had the foresight to allow for individual tweaking in the use of those methods. Thank heavens the current powers-that-be allow continued tweaking by the use of words such as "should" instead of "must" in the vast majority of Scouting printed guides.

Full uniforming for all is a great goal. It is one of my goals, but I also realize that I must keep the program a tad more inclusive for some until I can set the hook. Momma always told me you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.
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Postby Scouting179 » Wed May 18, 2005 2:04 pm

Buffalo Bill wrote:boys whose parents are unable, or unwilling, to provide for full uniform.


UNWILLING is usually the operative word here. 99% of the people I see who claim they can't afford a uniform have nice cars, clothes, cell phones, computers, game boys, etc. It's usually merely a matter of priorities.
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Postby wagionvigil » Wed May 18, 2005 2:10 pm

When I grew Up my parents worked hard to provide for my brothe and myself. We never had anything extra or fancy BUT we had complete Uniforms. Every boy had one and we all wore them at all activites not just for formal occasions. I still have a couple of the old shirts with no collar thay were great for the warm weather. Look how society has changed I bet everu adult on here had a suit for dress up. How many youth today have a suit? Not many! I think it is time the word should be replaced in all BSA literature with the word MUST and see what happens.
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Postby Buffalo Bill » Wed May 18, 2005 2:29 pm

I think if "MUST" started appearing more we would lose quite a few more boys to other programs.

I'm fighting a constant battle to guess just what type of program we can support just to keep the guys coming to Troop events in light of everything else that is going on in their lives. It is hard enough getting them to realize that their patrol needs them just as much as, if not more than, their sports team does. I've seen parents spend megabucks on a sports uniform and shoes, yet refuse to do the same for their Scout uniform. I've had boys show in their expensive sport uniform to meetings because they "didn't have time to go home and get their Scout uniform" Now, they didn't wear the sports uniform to school, but planned and brought it, but they couldn't bring the Scout uniform at the same time?

This weekend had a Momma want to take a boy out of his OA Ordeal so he could go to a band banquet. of course she would bring him right back--and I'm sure he would have honored his vows at the banquet. Every campout we have Scouts who will miss the entire weekend to play one sports game for about an hour on a Saturday.

I'm thinking we can't compete unless we keep it palatable for them. Without an exciting program we lose. I'm not saying we lower our standards. We must continue by making smart decisions about those 8 methods.

While I too feel the pain. I can't see "Must" being the answer. I sure do wish I DID have the answer.
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Postby evmori » Thu May 19, 2005 7:32 am

Buffalo Bill wrote:We've put it in writing for our Troop. 2nd Class and below: Scout shirt with neat, clean, properly fitting, shorts or pants is OK. 1st Class and above: Full Scout uniform must be worn for BOR. Reasoning is that, by 1st Class the boy should be able to have earned enough $$ and have made a comittment to the program.

We wear uniform while traveling and Scouts keep Scout shirts and Class B's tucked in while out in public. We have Troop Class B's and hats, as well as neckers.


By doing this, you are adding to the requirements for rank advancement. Can't do that. You can't require something the BSA doesn't require to be a member.

Don't get me wrong. I think the uniform should be a MUST to be a member. I wear mine to all Troop meeting & BSA functions (when appropriate). We encourage all the adults & Scouts to wear the uniform and have had pretty good results.
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Postby ASM-142 » Thu May 19, 2005 7:44 am

evmori wrote:
Buffalo Bill wrote:We've put it in writing for our Troop. 2nd Class and below: Scout shirt with neat, clean, properly fitting, shorts or pants is OK. 1st Class and above: Full Scout uniform must be worn for BOR. Reasoning is that, by 1st Class the boy should be able to have earned enough $$ and have made a comittment to the program.

We wear uniform while traveling and Scouts keep Scout shirts and Class B's tucked in while out in public. We have Troop Class B's and hats, as well as neckers.


By doing this, you are adding to the requirements for rank advancement. Can't do that. You can't require something the BSA doesn't require to be a member.

Don't get me wrong. I think the uniform should be a MUST to be a member. I wear mine to all Troop meeting & BSA functions (when appropriate). We encourage all the adults & Scouts to wear the uniform and have had pretty good results.


I made a similar comment earlier in this thread and got the response from Buffalo Bill:

Please oh please, don't call the uniform police! Whatever will we do!
If it is not written down then it is not an official rule
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Postby Buffalo Bill » Thu May 19, 2005 1:07 pm

My gosh people!

It is a sad state of affairs when we must equate the wearing of the uniform to a BoR to adding to the requirements. We are not adding to the requirements, we simply will not convene a BoR if the Scout doesn't wear the uniform which we know he already has. If you have a problem with that, fine. You run your unit as you see fit, and allow me the courtesy to run mine.

I fail to see the purpose in my comments being taken completely out of context. The statement about uniform police was in response to our willingness to allow a little flexibility in uniforming being criticized. Your mileage and opinion may vary. Petulance isn't needed here.

Uniforming in Scouting is not like uniforming in the military, and thank heavens for that. I retired from active duty 8 years ago. We're dealing with children here. If you act like a uniform NAZI your Scouts may just vote with their feet. References to this statement can be found in another posting of mine, if someone is inclined to take another statement out of context.

Let's try to remember that we all have the same goal here. How we reach that goal is subject to a modicum of interpretation--it's not all black and white. This great game with a purpose has many ways to be played. As long as we play it safe, and remain faithful to the intent, we are probably doing OK. Flexibility is key to success.
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Postby ASM-142 » Thu May 19, 2005 1:24 pm

I respect that you served our country, however, your reference to the other leaders, to include myself) in stressing the proper uniform and rules of the BSA as being "NAZI" like is fare from the truth. There is no similarity between enforcing the BSA uniform as is it written and being a uniform NAZI.

In my dealings with scouts as a leader along with my time as a scout myself I have not heard anything negative from scouts about the enforcement of wearing the BSA uniform. I also do not know of any boy that has left scouting beacuse of having to wear a uniform the corect way.
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Postby cballman » Thu May 19, 2005 1:38 pm

Ok people lets not get personal about this subject or it will be locked. everybody has a opinion whether you think it is right or wrong. I personaly think that if you have a uniform wear it and if you dont then I will help you get one. as for the BOR IMHO no uniform = NO BOARD.
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Postby Buffalo Bill » Thu May 19, 2005 1:39 pm

I again emphasize that we are all in this together...

I never accused ANYONE of being a NAZI. Please reread my statement. I am only stating that IF we act as such, the Scouts may leave.

I repeat that full uniforming is a great goal, one that I support wholeheartedly. In a perfect world it would happen. Truth is, we all have Scouts that have committed to the program in varying levels. We're just seeking a happy medium in which we can "set the hook". Our avenues we persue in order to get to that goal may differ--it doesn't mean that that either one is wrong.

Our commonalities as Scout leaders far outweigh our petty differences.
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Postby cballman » Thu May 19, 2005 1:43 pm

Bill
I understand that yes we all take things out of context but after reading your post over the last few days I dont see anything wrong with the post or YES I would have removed it or edited it quickly. you were making a statement that yes I also beleive in. but sometimes other people dont like they way we say things. so that is why I have asked everyone not to get personal in this section or I will lock this thread.

Thank You
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Postby ASM-142 » Thu May 19, 2005 1:54 pm

I respect everyone's opinion on wearing (or not wearing) the BSA uniform. I just don't find it appropriate to include any reference to NAZI in any of this. If uniform police wants to be used OK but please do not use uniform NAZI.
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Postby Buffalo Bill » Thu May 19, 2005 2:03 pm

I apologize if my use of the term "NAZI" has offended anyone in any manner. The use of the term was only intended to emphasize the dichotomy of approaches to the issue.
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Postby evmori » Thu May 19, 2005 2:13 pm

Buffalo Bill wrote:My gosh people!

It is a sad state of affairs when we must equate the wearing of the uniform to a BoR to adding to the requirements. We are not adding to the requirements, we simply will not convene a BoR if the Scout doesn't wear the uniform which we know he already has. If you have a problem with that, fine. You run your unit as you see fit, and allow me the courtesy to run mine.


Refusal to convene a BOR unless the Scout doesn't wear his uniform IS adding to the requirements. Nowhere does it state a Scout MUST wear his uniform for a BOR. It is encouraged but not required.
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Postby Buffalo Bill » Thu May 19, 2005 2:30 pm

You are correct Ed.

There is a statement about Scout Spirit in requirement number 9 for Second Class, 10 for First Class, an 2 for Star, Life & Eagle. "Demonstrate Scout spirit by living the Scout Oath (Promise) and Scout Law in your everyday life." Two parts of the Scout Law deal with Loyalty and Obedience. We interpret wearing the uniform to be a strong indication of loyalty to the Troop and a Scout's willingness to be obedient by following the directives of his elders.

Interpretations of Scout Spirit may differ, and I'm willing to accept other interpretations. I can't see this interpretation as violating even, please forgive the pun, the spirit of the law.
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Postby ASM-142 » Thu May 19, 2005 2:49 pm

Buffalo Bill wrote:You are correct Ed.

There is a statement about Scout Spirit in requirement number 9 for Second Class, 10 for First Class, an 2 for Star, Life & Eagle. "Demonstrate Scout spirit by living the Scout Oath (Promise) and Scout Law in your everyday life." Two parts of the Scout Law deal with Loyalty and Obedience. We interpret wearing the uniform to be a strong indication of loyalty to the Troop and a Scout's willingness to be obedient by following the directives of his elders.

Interpretations of Scout Spirit may differ, and I'm willing to accept other interpretations. I can't see this interpretation as violating even, please forgive the pun, the spirit of the law.


The problem with this logic is Scout Spirit is signed off before the BOR. I am all for uniforms and think that they should be mandatory, but until such a time that National says this we can not force a boy to wear a uniform for a BOR even if he owns one.

Also by directing a scout that he must wear a uniform which is in direct violation of National then this can be considered (in military terms) an unlawful order and therefore should not be followed.
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Postby ICanCanoeCanU » Fri May 20, 2005 3:06 am

I'm with Bill on this one. No uniform - no bor in our troop and guess what, no book - no bor either. This is a standard rule and all the boys are aware of it. If a boy can't be bothered to wear as part of the program they joined, and adults think this is ok, then something is wrong.

So maybe this isn't completely spelled out by nationals but like anything written - as guidelines to the program? Aren't we as adults also suppose to be helping youth transistion into responsible adults? Would we recommend these approaching a boss to ask for a promotion wearing sweat pants (in most jobs). And if showing up for BOR isn't part of scout spirit, being prepared, and many parts of the oath and law, then what is?

If boys are allowed to show up for a BOR without a uniform, I can only imagine what the meetings look like. I would also ask a boy why they are not in uniform? Do you think a coach would play someone in a game when not in uniform? How about a job that requires a uniform?
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Postby ICanCanoeCanU » Fri May 20, 2005 3:14 am

After re-reading this thread - I have a question?

What would happen if a scout showed up at an Eagle BOR without a uniform? Are some of you saying that this would be ok? That no where does it state that wearing a unifom is part of belonging to BSA? So technically a boy could join at 11 participate for 6 or 7 years, earn the rank of Eagle and NEVER own or wear a uniform?
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Postby ASM-142 » Fri May 20, 2005 7:47 am

My troop always stresses that uniforms (to include books) are needed for BOR. However, we have never told any scout that this is a requirement nor have we ever had a scout show up at a BOR without a uniform. If a scout showed up for his Eagle BOR without a uniform I would not stop the BOR. It would be up to the board to come to their own conclusions about the scout. However, if the BOR does does advance the scout and the only reason they state is his failure to wear a uniform at the BOR they they can appeal and most likely it will get overturned.

I do not agree with this but it is the rules that we need to go by.
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