scouts-l Mail Archive for July of 2000: Eagle or Not
Ted Mahler (t-mahler@TI.COM
Mon Jul 17 2000 - 08:02:35 CDT
This topic is talked about a lot. But I guess you never really pay
attention until its your time. Now it's my time. I am Scoutmaster. I
have a 17 year old Scout who, in my opinion, does not meet the 2nd
requirement for Eagle. He does not live the Scout oath in his everyday
life. Yeah, I know, what 17 year old boy does.
But this young man has been in trouble almost constantly. In Scouts
and in school. Some of the school infractions are "flipping off" a
teacher, cussing out a teacher, plus the usual ones like pushing and
shoving matches. His grades are bad and he has failed a grade. I have
had a teacher ask if he was going to make eagle. When I said that he was
about to complete his requirements, she shook her head. He just sits in
meetings slumped over and inactive. He will not help other scouts and
usually is verbally abusive to them. When put up for OA his peers did
not elect him although we had only two boys up for election.
His parents are leaders and have been from tiger cubs. He has been
active since tiger cubs although lately (within the last year) he has
not attended campouts or even meetings. We keep a discipline log and his
name is all over it. When I look at him and I read the scout oath, to
me, he is not an Eagle Scout.
On the other hand, he doesn't use drugs (that I know of), he is not
physically abusive to the other boys. He comes from a poor family. He
has completed all the book requirements (under heavy parent pressure)
and, here at the last minute, completed his project (once again under
heavy parent pressure). I know this because is dad has chewed him out
and "read him the riot act" about getting merit badges and requirements,
in front of the other leaders and even, now and then, in front of the
other boys. His dad is usually the one with the paper work in hand.
Yet I don't feel he is evil. Just very misguided.
Earning Eagle would be one of the few things in his youth he can look
back with pride.
My questions for my Scouter friends;
Do I have to sign off requirement 2 if I don't feel he lives up to the
Scout law and oath in his everyday life?
What have others done in a case like this? Consult with the boys
minister? Some of his teachers? His assistant principle? (I know them
Defer to the committee?
Bring in the Scout exec?
If I sign this off I feel I am doing a disservice to the troop and to
scouting. Yet I am not all knowing and I may be falsely denying a boy
something that he has but one chance to earn.
Am I making to big a deal about this? Am I churning my stomach over
something that in the overall scheme of the universe is not worth the
Sorry for the length, thanks for reading.