Re: Canadian Sea Scouting Uniforms
Jack Durish (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Tue, 01 Apr 1997 08:21:04 -0800
Eric Rimkus wrote:
> >Canadian Uniforms are listed within the Bylaws, Policies & Procedures
> >(BP&P) of Scouts Canada, latest revision, Fall, 1996.
> Why is it that the Canadian's have a uniform so very well defined in bylaw
> and policy and the US does not? A nation with a rich and colorful sea
> going history as great as the United States and significant involvement in
> Sea Scouting, and we can not develop, agree, define and impliment a
> uniforming standard. What is wrong with this picture?
> Eric Rimkus
> Mate SSS601--City of Roses
> Portland, OR
Tradition is a lot like religion when it is viewed narrowly. It sets
people to arguing about phantoms.
Actually, I'm pleased to see that "tradition" is alive and well in Sea
Scouting; that people are arguing over uniforms in the same manner that
church prelates once argued over the number of angels that could dance
upon the head of a pin. And with the same affect.
Uniforms in history (and tradition) are anything but... uniform. Every
branch of service and every service organization has individual styles
based on current fashion as well as utility. Watch a Shriners parade or
a military parade and my point is proven. If uniforms were strictly
uniform, parades wouldn't be parades, they would be "borings."
Do you want more evidence? Look to the Civil War. Students of that
period often wonder how friends distinguished their foes. Union soldiers
came dressed as Turks, Prussians, and more. Confederates often looked
Uniforms change with time. I was a Vietnam era soldier and we referred
to the oldtimers as the "Brown Shoe Army." In Officer Candidate School
we distinguished ourselves by painting our helmet liners and wearing
cravats; very un-uniform. I recently saw a uniform and didn't recognize
its wearer as a member of the Army. I wonder how they refer to us
Vietnam vets? (Kinder I hope than our contemporaries.)
Please, do not suppose that I am critical of your debate. You may find
it interesting that the youth are equally fervent in their opinions.
Orange County ships adopted a casual dress uniform some years ago. It
consists of a plain white shortsleeve shirt with appropriate patches
(worn over a white turtleneck sweater in cold weather), blue slacks, and
no hat. When my ship, the Buccaneers were formed, the youth elected to
wear traditional Navy blues. I was pleased. The other youth of Orange
County were not (vocally so). Tough.
Personally, I enjoy the diversity. I enjoy watching the parade at the
Ancient Mariner's Regatta each Memorial Day Weekend. Last year, a unit
showed up wearing traditional Navy blues supplemented by leggings and
Popeye pipes. Their sense of whimsy was highly entertaining; even more
so when they chose to march in the cadence employed during the Civil War
period. I enjoyed watching an ROTC-style unit marching with pretend
rifles and practicing the manual of arms (this set some old-timers
grumbling about militaristic overtones). I enjoyed the grumbling.
So let the debate continue, but please don't enforce one uniform. Keep
your senses of humor and remember what we're really here for.
Jack Durish, Skipper
SSS 935 - Buccaneer
Orange County, California