Re: Big Brother is Listening
(no name) ((no email))
Thu, 21 Mar 1996 02:16:31 -0600
John Pannell posted an article from the ASTA's publication here
which really bothers me as a Scouter and as a citizen.
>While I will not argue whether an employer has the right to fire >those who
disagree with their policies since I believe it >generally does, I wanted to
share this with you all as a caution >that when writing in any sort of
"public" or quasi-public form >you do not know who is reading what you write.
This is part of the reasoning why many professionals and some
volunteers won't post here or comment as to their own feelings in
our forum or any other forum: the fear of retribution.
Let's be brutal here. There's NOTHING that keeps anyone from the
National staff of the BSA (or any other youth organization, lest
we forget we are first and foremost a YOUTH ORGANIZATION FORUM)
from extracting and distributing information found on our list.
I really hope that someone IS doing it, and getting it to the right places
even though I've been constantly assured that nobody is really interested in
what goes on here in "this little mailing group". *little indeed*
There's also NOTHING that keeps your Council -- or the National
Council -- from deciding to yank your registration for what you
have said (or purported to say) in this forum or any other. That's a right
they have as that "private organization" that the BSA is. You have some
rights as well, as a citizen and as a user of a communications medium
(which, while I'm not a lawyer, I've been also assured that you do have some
rights in this area).
>As with anything else, actions and words have ramifications. >Sometimes
they are unanticipated. As I was told in TTT, the BSA >is NOT a democracy.
Beware what you write here and elsewhere, you >never know who will read it!
Neither John's comments (nor mine) were intended to scare anyone into
"toting the Scouting line". If that was so, then several of us would have
been out of Scouting years ago! Rather, what I believe John's intent is to
state that when you decide to "go around the established links" (chain of
influnce, or chain of command if you want) and decide to post to a public
forum rather than to express your concerns, then you can become a "moving
target" for those that do not share your opinions to do something about it.
My comments here are twofold: to express my personal displeasure at National
for "taking out the problem" instead of examining it and resolving it and to
express what the BSA asserts is their *right* to withdraw membership or
program rights to anyone they choose for any reason whatsoever with little
recourse by the person.
Let's turn it around to our LARGE band of Scouters here at Scouts-L. Because
we are a mailing list, we all know who's here.
By using the REVIEW command, we can see the names of each participant of the
list. That's the way that Doug "Lefty" Coffman and later Jon Eidson
designed the list to run. We don't allow for "false names". This is to
insure that everyone here has some feeling that their words and comments
won't move beyond the confines of the list without the permission of the
This is also why we "warn you" in advance, by way of the WELCOME letter,
that you are more than welcome to share the information from this listing
with your Council, District or unit. We want the information to flow not
just electronically, but also personally. Hopefully, by "advising you" at
the start, we can wave off those that want to "come to cause trouble" with
individuals or with the group as a whole.
When you use materials from this list, we ask simply that you CREDIT THE
LIST as well as the author because in most cases, the postings are a result
of a collaborative effort: someone asks
a question or has a concern here, and everyone that CHOOSES TO can
respond, point to some reference or resources, or comment. You are not
required to respond, nor are you required to explain or
"give names" as far as the situation is concerned. We don't care
about those things...we do care about each and every Scouter that
participates here at Scouts-L.
My heart goes outward to the Scouter that now has to find another summer
opportunity. Philmont is a recreational-person's resume
builder: it is the premiere outdoor adventure facility and the home to much
of the BSA's outdoor research. Those selected to serve on staff at
Philmont, however, are the "cream of the BSA"
and the program should expect some sort of "molding" in order to
reflect that "look" that they are looking for. Personally, I
think that the Philmont Staff Service could have handled it better. As a
Scouter, I have to remember that what I say and do
*can* reflect upon what the outside "thinks" or "feels" about the
I just don't want us all to start "counting our tees" and "doting our i's"
at the expense of sharing what we know and can help others with in a program
we all love and appreciate for what it is.
(MAJ) Mike L. Walton (Settummanque, the blackeagle) (
co-Owner, Blackeagle Services of Kentucky (502.826.7046) __)_
174 Chapelwood Drive, Henderson, Kentucky 42420-5036 | ** |]
(H) 502.827.9201 (F) 502.826.7046 (W) (to be announced) coffee? anytime!
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