scouts-l Mail Archive for May of 2000: Pushing merit badges
Dale & Donna Buss (buss_family@HOTMAIL.COM
Tue May 09 2000 - 13:14:25 CDT
Boy, could I relate to what you were saying.
"It's been a long week and I could use your help! Last week during a
Scoutmaster Conference I asked the Scout for his goals in the Troop. He said
to earn the Eagle. I asked him why and he said to put it on his resume. I
asked him what a resume was, he said he didn't have a clue."
Fortunately, these seem to be the minority, but they do really stick out. I
understand when a young man is 16, 17, 18 they have many more commitments
and may not be able to make it to as many scout functions as they used to.
But, if they have attained EAgle, they are needed as leader/role models in
the troop at whatever they can attend. Actually, a newer Boy Scout who has
this as their sole goal--probably is getting that from a parent (scary
thought!). This is part of today's societal influence....we play basketball
to win, we play football to win, we play volleyball to win, win, win, win,
win. And it is not important to just win a game--we have to win at the
regional and state level. This starts in Jr. High School around here.
Forgotten are: fun, fundamentals, development, character, integrity,
sportsmanship and loyalty.
"Also, right now I am sparring with a new leader, SMF trained, who is
pushing to build an advancement agenda for her sons new boy Patrol. Among
other things, she wants her son's Patrol to do all their Eagle required MBs
first before they loose interest in Scouting. She is driving our Troop Guide
This is exactly what our troop went through and now the ASM who pushed all
of this for her son so he could be the youngest EAgle ever in the troop is
whining that her 8th grade son doesn't want to do scout stuff because
there's no more merit badges to earn. He never learned to have fun in
scouting, hasn't mastered basic skills, does not want to lead, refuses to go
to JLT because mom can't go with him, etc. (He's earned somewhere around
The rest of the Boy Scouts ignored her and her merit badge pushing. They're
still having fun in scouts. She is the type of person that only does
activities if they will benefit her "award searching" in scouting. She
attended SMF & Wood Badge to "qualify" her for OA. (She wants to be the
first female from the troop in to OA). Her desire to get in to OA the last
two years created chaos throughout the entire camp! --- She hasn't made it
yet. You get the picture. We finally had to get the charter organization
involved. She is still a committee member and attends most Boy Scout
meetings & camp outs. However, she has seemed to be "tamed" some. Most of
us just hope she'll quit when her son finally drops out. (Could be awhile
because of course she wants her son to earn the most palms of anybody!)
This is scouting at its worst! Unfortunately, our SM is best friends with
her. He's a wonderful guy who can't see through the smoke she creates. The
boys have even suggested "No Women" camp outs to exclude her from
activities. She has been rude and inappropriately obnoxious with scouts, as
She was like that in Cub Scouts, too. But as Cubmaster, I didn't let her
get away with it. For some reason, the Boy Scout leaders thought her
"enthusiasm" was wonderful.....and they have paid dearly.
Her meddling did create one wonderful situation. So many parents were upset
by her that we now have 12-15 ACTIVE and interested parents on the troop
committee who meet faithfully every month. (We had none ACTIVE before.)
The troop committee sees that things are boy run and she stays out of it.
We have had to be pointed in some of our discussions.
Donna S. Buss
Cubmaster & Cub Roundtable Commissioner
Boy Scout Troop committee
Get Your Private, Free E-mail from MSN Hotmail at http://www.hotmail.com