Scouts-L Mail Archive for December of 1999: Re: help with laser tag
Re: help with laser tag
Bruce E. Cobern
Wed, 15 Dec 1999 23:12:27 -0500
> From: Scouts-L Youth Group List [mailto:Scouts-L@listserv.tcu.edu]On
> Behalf Of (MAJ) Mike Walton (settummanque, the blackeagle)
> Sent: Wednesday, December 15, 1999 4:41 PM
> Expect that the Guide to Safe Scouting 2000 will also say
> something about laser tag and all other "military-oriented
> wide games." Most Councils are siding with National's
> Risk Management Division in saying that "war gaming,
> whether with paint balls, balloons or lasers, is not an
> appropriate activity for Cub Scouts, Boy/Varsity Scouts
> or Venturers."
I don't know what you are quoting from the Risk Management Division, but
unless and until they actually PUBLISH a G2SS or other document which
expresses these "feelings" there is no prohibition on laser tag,
although we can talk philosophically all we want about whether there
"should" or "should not" be such a ban.
> Remember that the BSA is trying hard, Mike, to SEPARATE itself from
> "militaristic-type activity and appearance" (no camo, no "war
> gaming-type wide games", which Paint Ball and Laser Tag and their
> variants are considered, no military rank).
The fact is that we have had endless debates about exactly what the
statement about use of military uniforms means and, again, without CLEAR
statements from national that will never be resolved in a forum like
> I would stay clear of it no matter what the *current* Guide
> to Safe Scouting says,
There is absolutely NO BSA provided reason to do this. If, on the other
hand, your unit's leadership doesn't feel it is an appropriate activity,
then don't do it. But since you are asking whether it is permitted,
that appears not to be the case. The answer to your question is that
there is no current national prohibition.
> and if your unit STILL wants to do such an activity, to
> make SURE you clear it with your Council's Scout
> Executive (and NOT your District's Executive or
> senior professional).
I also see absolutely NO reason to do this. Why highlight something
like this and allow someone to make an issue of something that is not an
issue. Unless you have seen, or are provided, in writing, a statement
about a resolution of your council's executive board which prohibits
this activity, which prohibition should have been widely distributed
within your council, your event is no different than any other allowable
activity. File a Tour Permit indicating what you intend to do and just
go do it unless you get flak about the tour permit. Remember, your
Scout Executive CANNOT decide to prohibit this activity. He does not
have that authority as he is NOT a policy making force in your council.
Your council is bound by national rules unless its governing body, the
executive board, has adopted more restrictive policies.
> >The big question is laser tag would be considered a war game?
> >If it is how come.
It might be, but only specific types of war games are prohibited.
Bruce E. Cobern
Founders District, Queens Council, NY