Re: Full Uniforming & "Po Folks"
Sat, 8 Apr 1995 02:07:14 -0400
On Thu, 6 Apr 1995 11:25:04 -0400 "Paul H. Brown" <phbrown@CAPACCESS.ORG>
wrote in response to my post:
On Tue, 4 Apr 1995 Freemason@AOL.COM wrote:
<Stuff deleted for brevity>
>> BTW, for those who think they can get around the pants issue by using
>> military surplus uniform parts, think again: it's not proper uniforming,
>> it's against our National Charter to wear military uniform parts. Think
>Where does it say this?>
Remember, you asked for it :)
The following are some selected excerpts from the BSA Rules and Regulations
in the book _Insignia Control Guide_. I am quoting from the current
(copuright 1986, 1993 printing):
Article X, Section 4, Clause 4, prohibition of Alteration or Imitation.
"(a) No alteration of, or additions to, the official uniforms, as described
in the official publications, or the rules and regulations covering the
wearingofthe uniform and the proper combinations thereof on official
occasions, may be authorized by any Scouting official or local council or
andy local executive board or committee, except the Executive Board of the
Boy Scouts of America after consideration by the Program Group Committee.
"(b) Imitation of United States Army, Navy, or Marine Corps uniforms is
prohibited, in accordance with the provisions of the Organization's
Now, I have discussed this rule at length, for many years, at many council
and district levels, with commissioners, executive board members and
professional staff, and the response was always the same: wearing of military
uniform parts is interpreted as an imitation of military uniforming, and is
therefore not allowed.
Lest you think this is something new, I have encountered some variation of
this rule in uniform and insignia guides into the mid 50s. Seems there was
an incident at a military base where anolder Scout was arrested for being
A.W.O.L., although he was not, in fact, in the service (I think it was one of
Settumanque's postings about 3 or 4 months ago, under the subject of
recognition knots replacingribbon bars - is the story right, Mike?). My
sources don't go back much farther than that, unfortunately.
I would tend to agree that the newer pants aren't as "bulletproof" as the old
cotton ones from as late as the late 60s, but they are definitely better than
the plastic wrappers from the 70s - or, at least they were when Levi Strauss
made them. Can't really speak for the new design.
BTW, the cotton uniform shirts are of heavier material than the polyester
ones - I think that the pants are heavier too. Can't tell for sure - don't
have any personally.
when I was a kid, we usually saved the field uniforms for troop meetings,
hikes into camp, summer camp dinners (retreat), and camporee & other
ceremonial occasions (did this after ripping my pants on barbed wire during a
snipe hunt :). Rest of the time, especially if the event involved work or
play in dirt, we wore jeans & T-shirts.
Going back to resources (from an earlier thread):
I see no sense in letting an experienced uniform go to waste. Use your
resources. The ones available to me are available to a lot of you, too.
I try to scour the thrift shops whenever I have a few bucks to spare, and
clean out the Scout uniforms (I'm a collector). Usually, I get the shirts
for about $3-5, and the pants for $5-6.
I offered them for sale at School Nights & Open Houses, whenever a parent
carped about the cost of the uniforms (What's a carp? A goldfish that
complains a lot :), but only had a few takers.
Seems the offer tended to kick the soapbox out from under their feet when
they wanted to make a case for the unit providing the uniforms gratis. Goes
along the same argument about government handouts, (yeah, heard that one,
too -the gummit should provide the uniforms, pay the leaders, hand out the
program - too socialistic for me, folks;) usually from the same people who
think that "BSA" means "Baby Sitter's Association" and "Me volunteer? I don't
have time for my kid - YOU raise them."
Heck, even offered them for the price of doing a little yard work or wash my
car (earning it), but never had any takers on that one. No wonder I have a
rather jaundiced view of society today, and why I stress the improtance of
encouraging (not forcing) good uniform practice in the units I serve. The
boys have more pride in themselves at the meetings, for starters.
Randy Spradling, P.E.
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City