Scouts-L Mail Archive for June of 1999: Re: Needed-Voices of Experience---SOAPBOX Alert!!!!!!!!!
Re: Needed-Voices of Experience---SOAPBOX Alert!!!!!!!!!
Joseph T Gulick
Tue, 29 Jun 1999 11:17:35 -0500
This has major SOAPBOX written all over it!!!!!!!!!!!
Jon Dixon wrote:
"What happened to the "no more, no less" rule? If the boy has finished
the requirements, including showing scout spirit, then they are to be
passed off on the advancement. There is no maturity requirement -- so
long as whatever immaturity there is doesn't manifest itself as
unscoutlike behavior. So there is no basis to hold up the advancement
I would have to disagree with the maturity factor. I would think that it
falls under the Scout Oath as far as Duty to Self. It's part of metally
awake. Unless you are actually mature, their is something missing from
that Scout's full mental awareness of what a GOOD leader is. If he isn't
mature, he is not necessarily as effective of a leader as he should be.
I have personally thought for many years that a Scout is NOT ready for
the responsibility of the EAGLE until he is at least 15. Many people say
that if you don't get it by the time your in high school, than more than
likely you won't. I would say that there is a falicy with this thinking.
I have seen personally on MANY occassions where Scouts have received
there Eagle at 13 or 14, and then they immediately drop out. They
achieved what they were aiming for, and once they get it, they are no
longer seen in the Scouting world. What kind of leader is this?? Not
what I would consider an Eagle. This seems to be the rule more than the
exception in our Council. If a Scout gets his Eagle later, then he more
times than not, he appreciates it more, and is more willling to give back
to Scouting, than just be a memory in the minds of his Troop. Also, an
Eagle should be able to be the SPL and take the Troop out with no adult
help(just for transportation and safety) and be able to create an
effective campout for all to enjoy. With this he should be able to show
OUTSTANDING leadership and skills.
Let's put this into reality then. Let's say we have an Eagle that is 12
or 13 yrs. old. Can he effectively be a leader to 15-17 yr old Scouts.
In most cases not, but there are exceptions to all cases. I have had the
experience that the young Eagles(12-14 yrs. old) tend to use the fact
that they achieved their Eagle at such a young age as a point in which to
brag and show totally unScouting like attitudes and behavior. Many times
it is like they are better than every other Scout.
Be it proper or not, I have the feeling that NO Scout should get their
Eagle until they are 15(I got mine at 17, and I'm glad I was older so I
could appreciate what it stands for more.). I have let my feeling be
known to my fellow Scouters, Scouts, and parents in my Troop. They seem
to be in accordance with this. I don't know what would happen if a Scout
came to me and said at 13 he had completed all of the requirements for
his Eagle. First of all, it wouldn't happen.
By using the requirements of "Live the Scout Oath.....", you can
effectively stave off a Scout who REALLY hasn't exemplified what a Scout
is. I use this requirement religiously. That's what it is for. This
requirement can effectively be a time requirement for those Scouts who
are just not living up the part. I am not saying that it has to be
examined for every Scout, because for many Scouts that requirement is a
cake-walk. I know some Troops that have Scouts that are out of control,
but they are still allowed to advance. Why?
BTW---It has been my experience that if a Troop is truly BOY RUN, than
most Scouts won't get their Eagle at an earlier age, so just remember
that. My Troop is most definitely BOY RUN, so everyone think if yall can
say that. It is their Troop, loosen up their reins, and allow them to
live in Scouting, and not just rush through to their Eagle. I might get
an emmense amount of ugly comments, but the Eagle is not the most
important thing in Scouting, it is the things that they learn from their
experience while in Scouting.
"Every now and again someone brings this up, and I have never
understood where they come up with this claim. I personally went
through Scouting in the 80s, with skill awards and 2 months between
each of the first three ranks. I made Star in right about 10 months
from joining (might have been closer to 11 given the accumulation of
days/weeks for actually getting the BOR). It really wasn't hard to do
with a little dedication."
I went through Scouting in the '80's as well. I still think that the
requirements and the content of that book was better than any other. The
requirements WERE HARDER. Let's look at the Tenderfoot--you had to earn
2 Skill Awards. Each had at least 10 requirements, so Tenderfoot was a
minimum of 20 req's. Second Class required 3 Skill Awards, thus about 30
requirements for the rank. First Class req. 3 Skill Awards and First Aid
MB(the reason now that Star req's one more Eagle MB than Life---this is
absolutely redicious), thus about 40 req. How was this easier???? Go
Needless to say, it is my experience that Scouting in general has become
a kinder, softer, gentler Scouting. I am sorry to see the old ways go by
the way side, but continue to make sure my Scouts are exposed to
everything that Scouting has ever taught to me. I hope that your Scouts
are able to experience the same.
YIS and WWW,
Eagle Class of '90
Scoutmaster Troop 212
Kotso Lodge #330(Vigil 10-11-98) Advisor to the VC of Unit Elections