scouts-l Mail Archive for June of 2000: Re: Should Every Boy be an Eagle?
MAJ) Mike Walton (settummanque, the blackeagle (blkeagle@USSCOUTS.ORG
Thu Jun 15 2000 - 00:32:16 CDT
Pete Murphy wrote and asked:
>Please help me in my struggle with my conscious.
>A gentleman in my troop has taken on the job of nagging all those boys who
>have been Life for a couple of years to get off their duffs and finish up
Back in 1993, we called this the "Assistant Scoutmaster for Butt Kicking"
or the "Assistant Scoutmaster for Getting the Rear in Gear" on this list.
There was a really good conversation on the merits and demerits of such a
"office", but most agreed on the purpose: to MOTIVATE the Life Scout(s) in
a Troop or Team toward Eagle.
Not to PUSH them toward Eagle.
>There's a boy who's been in the troop for 6 years. Was Second Class for most
>of those 6 years. Became First Class almost a year ago. Needs 2 Eagle
required >merit badges for Star. Has only 10+ months until he turns 18. The
chief pusher >wants this boy to get his Eagle. So he asked me if it would
be alright for the boy to >do the 2 Eagle required merit badges and then
back date them and the Star BoR to >last April.
NO. It is NOT alright. Each Scout progresses at his own rate and speed.
So if "pokeymon" doesn't want to earn Eagle bad enough to earn the two
merit badges on his own, he doesn't deserve to become an Eagle Scout.
Plain and simple.
Look at this way: If somewhere down the line, it was discovered that you
did just as he asked, it could mean that someone else would have to make a
value judgement on you and the "Eagle Pusher". Don't do it...nothing is
worth that much aggrevation and Maalox, Pete!
>I do not believe every boy needs to be an Eagle, it's not one of the
>aims or goals of Scouting. It's obviously more important to this other
>gentleman. Maybe because he's an Eagle and I'm not. IMHO, there's nothing
>difficult about the requirements for Eagle. Any boy could accomplish them.
Exactly. Any boy WITH THE WILLINGNESS can earn Eagle. And he can earn it
before he turns 18 years of age. But he's got to want the badge. Not
Mom. Not Dad. Not the academic counsellor at the high school or junior
college. And not the "Eagle Pusher".
>If I bend the rules for one boy how could I justify not bending them for
>others? What criteria do you use for determining when your bending them
I use the "have you done your best rule" whenever I bend a requirement for
a youth. I've never done so as a Scoutmaster, because the requirements are
cut and dried. But I have done so lots of times for Cub Scouts and WEBELOS
Cub Scouts in my Dens. It is the "have I done my best" part that actually
MOTIVATES the kid to go back and TRY IT AGAIN, almost to the point of
tears, to meet the requirement. But he feels twice as big when he realizes
that I'm not going to sign in the Akela's spot until I KNOW that he's done
the very best he can. Some of the boys clearly could not meet the
requirement....but I get them to explain why they can and to demonstrate to
me their inability to meet the requirement.
As I stated, the Boy/Varsity Scout requirements are cut and dried. It says
that the Scout must meet the requirements. Therefore, I cut no slack when
talking with Scouts during the Scoutmaster's Conference....either you did
or you didn't.
You did right by saying "nah....let him earn it."
You may want to reorient your "ASM for Eagle Pushing" to move in the right
(MAJ) Mike L. Walton (settummanque, the blackeagle)
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