Re: What National should really be looking at!
Jonathan Dixon (dixonj@ROCOCO.COLORADO.EDU)
Mon, 9 Feb 1998 14:50:07 MST
From: CzarCasm <stanleyb@CRL.COM>
> It seems to me that aside for the 20 nights of camping.... A successful
> Scout can not be differentiated from almost any other moderately involved
> youth in today's society.
> I thought Scouting was to introduce boys to those things he would not
> encoutrer in his everyday life....not give him credit for them....
Actually, Scouting is about teaching Citizenship, Character, and
Fitness to young men. More generally, I would say Scouting is about
teaching those skills which will allow people to survive and succeed
in this world.
If you look at the lack of citizenship (and lack of understanding of
citizenship) shown by most Americans today, I would not cut back on
what we teach. Safety reflects the fact that (if I remember
correctly) accidents are the leading cause of death and disability in
all but the very young and very old. Emergency Prep/Lifesaving both
help train Scouts how to respond in crisis situations (quite different
from Safety and Swimming, actually).
There are very few times that being able to build a signal tower or
run an orienteering race will be so important. They might be great
hobbies, but so are many other MBs.
You are also overlooking a couple of other things. First of all,
"Scout skills" such as knots, map & compass, hiking, etc., make up the
bulk of the requirements leading to First Class. Once First Class,
they have already had a fairly unique experience and have been
differentiated from other youth.
Second, the major part of Scouting is boy leadership; this is
something that will not be encountered many other places. Most other
activities will involve the youth being told what to do by an adult --
in school by teachers, in sports by coaches, in band by directors,
etc. We let him choose the path (within limits) and put him in the
position to lead others to follow that path. We even allow him to
fail (or we should). This is a unique experience.
Personally I think that most of the choices for required vs
nonrequired badges are well done. I don't see any major rethought
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City