Scouts-L Mail Archive for February of 1999: Re: Character Counts
Re: Character Counts
Thu, 18 Feb 1999 08:15:16 -0500
Lee Hudson wrote:
>Adult male, age 22, new step-father to Bear Cub, former Star Scout in
>neighboring troop, former Council camp staff (3 yrs), in full uniform
>(by the way), shows up at all den and pack meetings and exhibits "Scout
>Spirit" each time. Recruited by DL & CC (no active CM) as ADL for
>Bears. Man admits to having been convicted and sentence served for
>forgery one year ago. he looks you in the eye when he tells you, he
>"did a really stupid thing", "he learned his lesson", and "doesn't drink
>anymore because of this." <snip>
>Question: Should this automatically preclude him from leadership? <snip>
> this issue has prompted "Character Counts"
>conversations with my 15 year old Scout son. He feels that character
>should be judged on their whole person, not just a particular incident
>and that we learn best from the mistakes we have made........
Congratulations, Lee, for raising a wise and compassionate son. This
potential ADL needs to be brought back into the fold. It sounds as if he
has had his life-changing experience, survived it, and has come out a
better person for it.
I read somewhere about a basketball player, town hero, lots of money but
used it to help urban kids get out of trouble, donated way way more than
his fair share of time to kids in the town, very high community spirit, and
really helped many kids stay out of trouble for many years. He was brought
before a judge on a possession of small amount of drugs charge. He was
very contrite and ashamed, admitted he had done a stupid thing, and
accepted responsibility for it, and was willing to accept the punishment
that the court set. The judge told him, in effect, 'You have deposited
into the Bank of Good Will in this town for many years, and your deposits
have been frequent and many. Now is the time for you to draw on that
account. I am dropping the charges. Your account is now empty. If you
appear in front of me again it will be overdrawn.'
Your son, Lee, recognizes that this man has used his Good Will account up
and is looking to reopen the account. It sounds as if your Pack may have a
good opportunity to really live the Scout Law here. Everyone is allowed a
mistake. It is what you do with that mistake that matters. Give this
fellow a chance, with the full knowledge that he will be watched carefully.
His account has been emptied, allow him to start redepositing into it.
Just My Opinion, YMMV