(no name) ((no email))
Tue, 5 Feb 1991 17:46:00 EST
This is NOT a reply to the "list" question...it IS a reply to the
earlier response I stated here about Scouting and patroitism.....
I (finally) got a call back from Carolyn Cummings. She is the
Assistant to the "official spokesman" of the BSA, Raul Chavez. (actually, her
job title is that of "external communications coordinator", but that's neither
here nor there....)
The questions I asked were (and her responses, and those of Raul):
1) What is the official position of the BSA in the "war in the gulf"?
(The BSA joins with the World Association in denouncing all forms of warfare.
However, the BSA does join with the rest of the country in supporting the war
effort. (he said, and you didn't hear (or see) this from me, that you will see
a new program emphasis dealing with that come this fall...)The Boy Scouts of
America stongly beleives that all Scouts and Scouters should be looking for
ways of being of service to their communities and in especially those areas
which has a large number of "soldiers" there, be looking at ways to support
those families there (again, you did not hear this from me, but, national
is also hoping that this strong nationalist pride will spill over in and
more people will become active again in supporting scouting! $$$wise)
2) What kinds of things can Scouts and Scouters participate in that
will not show Scouting's non-partisian role??
(The same things I wrote about in the last note to everyone. Carolyn
said that there were lots of Scout troops that have sent reports through the
Scout Executives stating that they have arranged for shopping for families
with small children, babysitting, "playtimes" in which parents can "dropoff"
their kids and allow them some breathing (and personal) time, and small
candleight rallies in front of city hall in addition to the rasing and lowering
of the flag. Raul stated to "be creative but cautious" in what you do. There
are some things that Scouting has always done, such as arrange for honor guards
and parade guards. There are other things that Scouts CANNOT do, like hand out
partisian flyers ("vote for me") ("vote for prop X") ("issue X is wrong (right)"
) and the like. Scouts CANNOT stand on the podium WITH a candidate (off to a
side, off the podium, in the audience) IN UNIFORM.
(at that point, he paused, while Carolyn reminded me that "whatever we
did while we were NOT identified as Scouts or Scouters is fine. It is what we
do IN UNIFORM that "flames" the national folks....)
3) Is there anything we can do to show our support in ways other than
in service projects??
(Yes. Some Troops and Packs are observing a momment of silence in
their meetings at the beginning or end....to honor the troops there. No prayer;
just a moment of silence. Other troops are wearing yellow or red, white and \
blue ribbons and encouraging others to do the same. Still other units, including
a Explorer Post, is showing their support by arranging with a local printer t
get paper flags and insuring that they get up in the approviate places.)
4) With the threat of terrorism in some localities, will some Scouting
events be cancelled or delayed??
(Carolyn stated that it was the Council Scout Executive's call. As far
as she knew, NOTHING has been cancelled, athough I know of a Winter Camporee
at Fr. Bragg that was cancelled, for fear that having open access to Fort
Bragg by Scouts and Scouters could result in a dangerous situation for the
people living at the home of the 82d Airborne and the Special Operations Command
(the main people at Fort Bragg).
5) Is there anything else that Scouters should be aware of that could
result from all of this??
(Raul stated "definately"; Carolyn said "yes". They both emphasized
that Scouters, particularily Scoutmasters, Den Leaders and Cubmasters, keep
a eye open for signs of depression and other problems with some Scouts (and
I added, Scouters). We could be that solitude in the "television war" by
continuing the same things we were doing before all of this started. Young
people like continuity...and will rebel otherwise. Carolyn said that Scouts
should be encouraged to talk openly about the war..especially since, like
with everything else, they proably cannot talk about it as openly with their
parents or even schoolfriends. Both said to "not let things there overwhelm
the intent of Boy Scouting..that is, to have fun while learning valuable
***I wish to add at this point that Scouting has always been there
in times of need. We have all read about Scouts and Scouters doing what they
could in times of flood, earthquake and other natural occurrances, and doing
both World Wars. We need to be there for those Scouts because they need us..
our evenhandness in this war will dictate to a large extent their behavior
if (and I pray we don't get to that point) they are called to serve at home
I hope that this infomation has been of use to my fellow Scouters.
I apologize deeply for the delay in getting this information; part of the
problem is that we cannot call out long distance without a calling card from
this campus..and I have overextended (read "went over the limit") my phone
card. So I borrowed someone elses to make the call.
The other o
The other part was that it took a while for National to decide
"what their official position" is in this situation. Be looking for the CSE's
comments in SCOUTING and EXPLORING soon.
Mike L. Walton (blackeagle)
Eastern Kentucky University
Richmond, Kentucky 40475-3101
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City