dave c jarzabek (Dave.Jarzabek@ORYX.COM)
Tue, 28 Mar 1995 13:40:24 CST
I've been lurking out here for a couple of months and thought it
time to introduce myself.
My name is Dave Jarzabek and I'm a relative new-comer to scouts.
As far as ancient history goes, I did some scout time back in
the late 50's - early 60's as a cub, but became discouraged
because we had a very boring den/pack (so it seemed to me at the
time anyway). Our family camping/activities were more interesting.
I became involved again a couple of years ago when I talked my
son, John, into trying out scouting to see if he liked it.
Fortunately, he joined as a Bear, just before they had a campout
and he was hooked. This was Pack 233, Longhorn Council, Lewisville
Texas. The group was fairly active. I acted as an Assistant Den
leader in an unofficial capacity throughout his time as a Cub.
My son just bridged into Boy Scouts (Troop 9168 in Lewisville, TX)
at Blue and Gold. I just finished Scoutmaster Fundamentals last
weekend and will end up as an Assistant Scoutmaster or Troop Council
member. My son is geared up to work for his Eagle and has my full
support and encouragement. He was just elected Patrol Leader of
the new patrol and he is planning for the Camporee next weekend.
With that as an introduction, I would like to add my $0.02 about
a couple of topics which seem to occupy a lot of posts to this
RE: Snipe hunts/hazing:
Last weekend, my son and the new scouts were on a campout and they
were the object of a snipe hunt organized by the older boys. Having
just gone through YPT, I know that snipe hunts are not supposed to
take place, but I for one see no problem with them. Had I been
at the campout rather than SM Fundamentals, I would not have objected.
It is my personal opinion that these sorts of things need to be placed
in perspective. Considering the amount of physical and emotional
harassment that kids are subjected to in school, this is small
potatoes. (My son goes to a church school where the harassment
level is less, but still present to a greater degree than this
I know the kids involved quite well, having been with
them for the last couple of years and none of them are so sensitive
that this sort of activity is going to scar them emotionally. All
of the kids love practical jokes and took the hunt in the spirit in
which it was intended. In fact, the only thing that amazed me is
that they fell for the trick in the first place.
I realize that BSA must set guidelines which seem sometimes too
constrictive along these lines in order to avoid legal problems,
but sometimes we can go overboard by being too overprotective to
the point where the kids are deprived of the life experiences of
youth. These are good healthy boys and need a mixture of positive
and negative life experiences to develop character. Being too over
protective, IMO does not perpare them for life as an adult in the
RE: Mixed Gender Adult Leaders
I, for one, do not understand why this is an issue. Female den
leaders are common place in Cub scouts. I know several women who
are actively involved with scouting on the Boy as well as Cub level.
They are competent, trained leaders.
On the Boy Scout level, I think it is most desirable to have male
leaders as the primary leadership, just as I believe that it is
most desirable to have female leaders as the primary leadership
for Girl Scouts. I believe this because these are the role models
to which the youths are looking and I believe that it is more
appropriate to present same gender role models in the primary
I do not, however believe that either group should practice the
exclusion of the opposite gender as leaders. Boys and girls need
to have both genders as role models to which they can look for
guidance. Both genders have the ability to contribute in a positive
sense to the development of the youths. If they are willing to
contribute, they should not be turned away.
With regards to requiring that campouts have a female leader if
girls are present and male leader if boys are present, I believe
that this is by far and away the most desirable scenario. If nothing
else, it is best to have a leader of the same gender around in case
of physical or emotional emergencies. I do not think it is nearly
as desirable if same gender leadership is lacking, however, if a
campout has been planned and for some reason, same gender leadership
cannot be arranged, I see no reason to cancel the campout.
I have a daughter who is still a bit too young for Girl Scouting, but
when she is old enough, I would have no problem in sending her on a
campout with adult male leaders if no women were available. This is
because I will be involved enough to make sure that the leaders are
well trained and qualified to do the job. I am definitely concerned
for the well being of my children, as all parents are. I also believe
that it is my responsibility to be involved with the adult leaders to
the point that I feel that they are a positive influence to my
Please forgive the length of this post. I guess I just got carried
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City