Pushups and hazing
Kim Moye (kmoye@SUN2177.SPD.DSCCC.COM)
Thu, 23 Jul 1998 08:52:57 -0500
Okay, I'll put on the flame retardant suit.
At our Cub Scout Day Camp, I called a Boy Scout over who had left something
on my range. One of the adults on staff informed me that I could take him,
but I needed to make him do a "push-up" because the Scout still "owed" him
I explained that I just wanted the Scout to pick up some stuff that he had
left on the range by accident and said "I don't do pushups."
It appeared that pushups were being used if the Boy Scouts were not doing
things *exactly* the way they were told to, or if they were slow in
responding to what they had been asked to do.
I will admit, I thought it was wrong. Several Boy Scouts kept asking me if
they could work my area with me. I explained to them that I could not change
their jobs and if they wanted to change they had to speak with adult who
was in charge of the Boy Scouts.
I told my son and his buddy that if they were working an event and were told
to do pushups as a "punishment" because they weren't quick enough, they were
to tell the adult, politely, "I'm sorry that this is not working out. I'll
go to headquarters and see about being reassigned." I told them if they
were having to do pushups because they were fighting, or back-talking, that
was another story. (*I* can't see doing this for any reason, but that's me.)
I told the adult leader in charge of the Boy Scouts what was happening and
told her that if my son came home from helping out and told me that he had
to do this, he would not be back the next day.
One of the Cubs left a water bottle on the range. At the closing ceremony
I announced I was looking for "xyz" to return his water bottle. Several
adults, including the one who was having Boy Scouts do pushups, told me to
make him sing to get it back. I explained that I don't do that.
At the last Cub Roundtable, I explained the safe haven concept and told them
that I hated standing before them and explaining policy when I could not
give them a reference to look up, but it was *my* opinon that the above
items were hazing. The district exec explained that the standard "anything
that is embarrasing or demeaning to the boy is hazing".
Some boys won't hesitate to get up and sing. Others will not claim the item
if they know what they have to do. I know the boys in my pack that could
handle this, and might even enjoy it. Since I don't feel comfortable
doing it to *all* the boys, I don't do it. I also feel there is a difference
in doing it before your troop or pack and doing it at cub day camp or a
camporee where you have more people.
Sorry that this is so long, but this is something I feel strongly about.
On a more positive note, the adult leader who had the Boy Scouts do pushups,
is an enthusiastic leader who contributes much to the district. I think
this and the singing is a holdover from his youth.
cubmaster/pack 308/allen tx
cub rt commish/arrowhead district/circle 10
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City