Settummanque, the blackeagle (waltoml@WKUVX1.WKU.EDU)
Fri, 15 Jul 1994 20:33:42 CST
Scott Begin <0005555440@MCIMAIL.COM> writes:
(Daniel Kropveld <KROPVELD@AMC.UVA.NL> wrote about the "adult run,
controlled" initiations used by his troop.)
(Scott compared Daniel's comments to those that many American
Scouters *used* to do before the implementation of the Youth
Protection Policy by the BSA)
>There are those who take the other side of the game, providing these
>"nonexistant" items to scouts as a way to reverse the joke to those who
>asked for the thing. I've actually seen a smoke shifter (and it seemed
>to work, too) that was saved just for the occasions when someone asked
I was one of those that did just that. Man, were *those* Scouters
really mad when I demoed the use of those items to the Scout and then
told the Scout to show the Scoutmaster, Assistant, etc. what he'd got
from us and how to use it...and even "to BRING IT BACK SO THAT SOMEONE
ELSE THAT ASKED FOR ONE CAN GET IT FROM ME".
After several "left-handled smoke shifters" came back to me, along
with the "20 feet of shore line" and the "rope detangler", the "fun"
of sending a Scout (new ones mostly) off to look for those things
endlessly became less of a game and they stopped coming by
mysteriously. I still have pictures of me demoing a smoke shifter at
summer camp once around here.
>The only problem I've heard of with these rituals is that under the
>Youth Protection Plan, it can be considered hazing (which is
>phohibited), and shouldn't be done. I think the argument is that it
>humiliates the scout. I can't say I completely agree with this, but I
>do understand the arguments.
I agree with Scott. While there were many "disappointed Scouts" that
came back to camp empty-handed to the laughs and giggles of their
peers at this "form of initiation", what would happen if this was
EXTENDED to other forms of "we all had to do it"?? A little horseplay
is good for the Scout, but when we INSIST that "it HAS to be done
because everyone else had to do it", we get into some really grey
When I as assigned to a Engineer Battalion as their Communications
officer, they had a ritual in which they would use two backhoes and
dig a trench four foot deep and five feet across. One by one, they
would throw those that attended their first annual training into the
Engineer pit, which would be full of dirt and water, mixed into a
soupy mess. Everyone had fun with this, and it was "blessed" by the
Battalion Commander...until it was HIS turn to be "blessed" into the
pit. He refused, and it sent a echo to everyone else "it's good for
us, but not for him".
The next year, the practice was mysteriously ended to the
disappointment of those "oldtimers" that insisted that "we should
continue this for the good of the unit and for tradition sake".
Unless *you* as a Scouter are willing to endure what your Scouts must
endure, you cannot ask them to do anything. That's part of
leadership. That's part of what we're teaching our youth. For this
reason, many Scouters don't want to look for shifters, and rope, and
grease at all hours of the night.
We shouldn't expose our Scouts to such sillyness as well, then.
It's illegal and wrong. It's also a part of Scouting that went to the
Settummanque, the blackeagle... (MAJ) Mike L. Walton (
(h) 502-782-7992 (f) 502-781-7279 (w) 502-782-7467 |-=-|]
3201-D Cave Springs Avenue -- Greenwood, KY 42104-4439 -=====-
Internet: WALTOML@WKUVX1.WKU.EDU/America OnLine: KYBLKEAGLE@AOL.COM
"Not speaking for WKU......................but I do speak well!!"
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