Jim Sleezer (JHS8@OSUVM1.BITNET)
Mon, 19 Apr 1993 11:16:22 CST
This past weekend I heard someone refer to the "Scout mentality" of running
things. When I asked for amplification, I was told that the younger boys do
all the work while being bossed by the older scouts. The higher you are in
the organization, the less you do and the more you tell others what to do.
The big deal is to get "high enough" in the organization to just stand around
and talk to the SM and other leaders and not do anything yourself -- except
tell the younger boys what to do.
My immediate reaction was to defend, but as I thought about things, that was
just what was happening. The two newest boys were being expected to do
everything. They gathered the wood, they built the fires, they cooked the
meals, they washed the dishes. The middle group of Scouts got a few duties,
and the older Scouts did almost nothing. Someone remarked that the boys
needed to learn by doing. As I thought about that, I realized that the
boy leaders were "doing leadership" but not the kind I would would like.
Somewhere the idea of team work had gotten lost.
My favorite scoutmaster was the one who did with us. When axes needed to be
sharpened, he sharpened one along with the rest of us. When we learned
semaphone (does that date me?), he sent and received messages, too. When
we played, he joined the game too. Maybe I remember wrong, but years ago
we worked together to get the job done. We often learned skills by doing
them along side of an older scout. I enjoyed those years.
Now, I'm beginning to wonder if a lot of boys drop out because they are
expected to "work for the leaders" both boys and adults rather than working
with them. Do you all have "perfect" units or do some of these comments
about "Scout mentality" fit??
I'll take your comments to the next roundtable for discussion!
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City