Paul S. Wolf (Paul.S.Wolf@ALUM.WPI.EDU)
Mon, 27 Jul 1998 11:12:39 -0400
Mark Riffey wrote:
> She must have been confusing the ban on actually turning the boy
> upside down during the ceremony that was handed down several years
> I thought that was yet another urban legend. Our boys would be sorely
> disappointed (IMO) if we stopped doing this. Our dads' backs would
> just stop being sore<g>
> Would this 'edict' be in my leader book and I just missed it? If its
> not in my leader book, its pretty hard for me to accept it as policy.
> Especially since Ive only been a scouter for a little over 4 yrs.
Here is a copy of a letter sent out by BSA on this topic to a Scouter in
Mid-Iowa Council that has been posted here before:
>> Dear Ms. B**:
>> For several years, the Cub Scout Division has been trying to
>> discourage the use of the Bobcat cermony in which boys are physically
>> turned upside down. There are several reasons for this:
>> 1. It has a strong possibility of being frightening to some boys.
>> 2. It smacks of adult harrassment of kids.
>> 3. It makes a frivoulous occasion of what should be a solemn,
>> dignified ceremony.
>> 4. It carries a real potential for injury. I wonder what
>> explanation a leader could give to the parents (and possibly,
>> the attorney) of a boy who was dropped on his head as to what
>> was going on and why it was important.
>> 5. There is no Cub Scout basis to the ceremony. "Do a good turn
>> daily" is the Boy Scout motto. There is no point to pinning a
>> Bobcat pin upside down until a boy does his "first good turn",
>> because the daily good turn is not a Cub Scout concept.
>> In summary, there is no point to this type of "ceremony" and it
>> contains significant potential for harm. As such, it has no place
>> in Cub Scouting and should not be used.
>> Ernest R. Thomas, Jr.
>> Associate National Director
>> Cub Scout Division
>> cc: Gene Stone, National Director
>> <name deleted>, Scout Executive of Mid-Iowa Council
Seems pretty clear to me. DON'T DO IT!
> Next thing you know, someone will tell me we can't paint faces either
> (we paint the faces of all new bobcat, bear, wolf, and webelos at the
> earliest pack meeting after the achievement). Course, I can see where
> the use of a paint roller on a boy's face would upset some folks
I see no reason for this either. The statements (1, 2, & 3) in the
letter I quoted seem to apply to this "tradition" as well. There are
many ceremonies in the literature that are meaningful, fun, and
appropriate, that don't involve such actions as you have listed. I'd
suggest you use them. Start a NEW tradition, of following the
guidelines BSA has developed.
Paul S. Wolf, PE mailto:Paul.S.Wolf@alum.wpi.edu
Traffic Engineer, Cuyahoga County Engineer's Office - Cleveland, Ohio
Past President, Great Lakes Region, Federation of Jewish Men's Clubs
Winding Rivers Dist. Advancement Comm., Greater Cleveland Council, BSA
Advancement Webmaster, US Scouting Service Project (www.usscouts.org)
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City