Dang Magic Cards
Dan OCanna (ocanna@ALPHA.CAER.UKY.EDU)
Wed, 19 Jul 1995 15:31:23 EDT
Jack Wood asks:
"Have Magic cards been a problem to anybody else ? Are these cards substance-
free drugs? Or what?"
I vote yes and yes to the above. These cards seem to hit all the "hot buttons"
of Scout age boys (girls too?). They are collectible. The games are fairly
short and relativly easy to play, and there is some skill involved. As
such I've no real problem with the game or cards ... in MODERATION. Like the
examples you mentioned our troop has suffered a certain amount of disruption
from Magic Cards. We've dealt with it in the following ways:
1. The PLC set down rules about Magic games and cards durring Troop meetings.
Any Magic cards visible durring meeting times are confiscated. On the first
offense by a Scout the cards are returned at the next meeting. Second offense
they are destroyed. Stiffer penalties than the adult leaders would probably
have set. Once the rules were inplace there have only been two infractions.
The boys seem to police themselves pretty well.
2. Because of the collectable aspect of certain cards excess value is placed
on some of them by the boys. This can make them an object of theft. Our
troop policy on valuable items brought to meetings or campouts and lost/
damaged/stolen can be summarized in one word: TOUGH. If a boy brings a
________ to camp and don't get home with it who's fault is that? His! (fill
in the blank with: Hierloom pocket knife, Ming vase, $100 bill, or $75 Magic
3. At summer camp my ruling on Magic games was:
a. Don't let me see you playing when you are scheduled to be in class.
"But Mr. O, I dropped that class..." "Fine, don't be playing
Magic during that time." (rumor is I get grumpy at Summer Camp).
b. Lights out at 10 p.m. and we get up at 6:30 a.m. If you want
to play Magic by flashlight OK. You get up at 6:30 anyway.
c. "If I hear, 'My card was stolen' one time I'll confiscate every
card I see" (I really must get grumpy at Summer Camp)
4. One of our ASM's has devised a couple of fantisy type games for publication
in the past. He lead a months worth of meetings in an attempt to get the guys
to come up with a game of Scouting skills and situations. After 4 meetings
the boys and adults were bored with the concept and it faded.
I personally feel the blasted things are a total waste of time and money.
If Scouting is about anything, though, it is about putting young men in
situations where they can make some decisions for themselves and learn the
consequences. It is stretching some to think of Magic cards as a tool to
be used in advancing the Aims of Scouting, but as long as they are not
disruptive to the program I can live with the fad till it fades out. After
about 6 months that seems to be happening in our troop.
Dan O'Canna [firstname.lastname@example.org] Lexington, KY USA
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City