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Posted by: BoydKKK ( )
Date: September 17, 2023 12:33PM

Have never really been a fan of Boy Scouts and scouting. More my problems with Authority and liking individuall pursuits than anything really associated with them.

Years of mountaineering (expeditions of more than a month many times) and outdoor activities were normal for me. Growing up shooting rabbits & squirrels to help with food, spending the time alone and even the occasional deer...

Got enrolled in Cub Scouts and that didn't last long. Too structured and it all seemed so simplified. Never got into the higher scouting. Watched them tho, badge crazy types who drove you nuts.

Teens we moved to Utah and Mormon troops. Way different from the guys I knew in Oklahoma and Texas. More superficial and it seemed every other kid was EagleScout by 13 years old.

I do know there are and were problems. At the same time I met many involved at all levels who were dedicated, sincere and worked hard to help the kids. They hate the dirtbags even more than most of us do.

They deserve credit for their work with the kids. Some I know would be first in lie for a firing squad to deal with the abusers.

Watching through the years I have seen a lot of differences in Scouting with most of the troops outside MFMC being better run with actual volunteeers rather than desperate appointments.

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Posted by: summer ( )
Date: September 17, 2023 12:42PM

When I was growing up in New England in the 60s, my brother and dad were both in scouting. I don't think that the troop was affiliated with any church. My brother eventually got his Eagle Scout, and my dad acted as some sort of advisor to the troop. I remember him occasionally sitting with scouts at the kitchen table, going over things.

Back then, a boy did not get his eagle until he was close to finishing high school, and even then, not every boy got it. I always thought it was weird how the Mormons handed out Eagles like candy.

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Posted by: Lethbridge Reprobate ( )
Date: September 17, 2023 01:44PM

I enjoyed the 4 summer scout camps in the Rockies....but not much else about scouting. I had no success at tying other things...and that whole taking orders deal woulda led to abject failure had I ever gone on a mission or been in the armed services.

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Posted by: Heartless ( )
Date: September 17, 2023 03:20PM

I didn't like scouting that much.

I remember very little of cub scouts other than I received my first pocket knife and have carried one everyday for over half a century.

Oh and Dads building rockets and pinewood derby cars.

Weblos was a turning point for me. The monthly badges to earn so I could get my arrow of light award.

I could have cared less about the award, it was imaginary to me.

My parents threw a fit. How dare I not care. God himself said the boy scout program was inspired. How dare I not try and excel!

I countered they simply wanted me to succeed for their own bragging rights. That earned me a beating.

So I earned the award. Once I hit Blazers, the first year og boy scouts, I knew I faced more harassment, pressure and punishment if I didn't get eagle scout. The sooner the better.

So I scoured the merit badge book, found things that interested me, got the badges.

Of course some were fun, swimming, lifesaving, shooting, geology. Others were earned when connected to other activities I did. Went to a NASA sponsored summer camp and earned merit badges in computers, atomic energy, space exploration etc.

So, after a short 18 months, I had earned the 24 badges. I just had to wait out the time and do the service project.

Then a month after my 13th birthday I received my eagle scout award.

The catch? Once I aged out of the deacon quorum, like all my buddies, I wanted nothing more to do with scouts. Never did another scout camp, earned another badge.

My parents could have cared less. I was the first eagle scout in the ward and my name was first on the list of eagle scouts on a plaque that hung in the ward lobby for forty years. They were always bragging about it.

Myself, I'd give the eagle back in a heartbeat. It meant nothing more to me than a rite of passage and a step towards getting away from an abusive home.

I wonder how many Utah eagles were in my situation. How many just needed patents off their back.

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Posted by: elderolddog ( )
Date: September 17, 2023 04:25PM

The one year I went to summer scout camp, our troop had to dig down around our campsite's flag pole so that we could "fly" our troop flag below ground level...because you flew your troop flag at a level based on a troop inspection.

A number of us were four-year Tenderfoots (Tenderfeet?).

I didn't rank all that high on the list of underachievers.

All those years, we only briefly had one scoutmaster who cared even a bit about the scouting program.

Once, on a ward hunting trip involving scouting-aged boys, one of the bishop's counselors kicked up pebbles and dirt ten feet from me, shooting at what he swears was a jackrabbit. The dirt and dust kicked up an instant before the sound of his 12 ga registered... It didn't bother me because I am immortal (yes, Gladys, I'm also immoral...) and continue to this day to prove my immortality.

No one in my ward age group got anywhere close to Eagle. Most of the guys were in active rebellion versus my passive rebellion.

One grandson fell prey to his TBM mother's typical search for shared mormon glory. His Eagle Scout project was a 'bridge' over a tiny swale at a park in the city where she works. You could step over it even when there was water in it, according to a family source.

Per the family source, his TBM parents did the design and measuring, bought the wood, delivered it to the park, brought all the tools, and then showed him what to saw and where to hammer... And then they cheered lustily for him at the award ceremony and shared the video of them doing so.

His two younger brothers? Well, they've been inactive for a few years, and I have to suppose that their road out must have started early enough so that they didn't give a hoot about scouting. There were never any stories about any scouting accomplishment

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Posted by: cludgie ( )
Date: September 19, 2023 03:14PM

When I was placed in a Mormon foster family after my parents died, I was pushed by force into the scouts doing the old Explorers program. I thoroughly hated it, and it brought no good memories. One of the Explorer advisors -- my own foster father -- would sometimes physically abuse me. On one of our trips, he'd single me out each and every day. Once when I asked him to quit, he punched me full in the face. This behavior does not a good scout make. I do blame myself, however, for not contacting my social worker and reporting the incidents, but I'm not sure where that would have taken me. It might have sent me somewhere I didn't want to go.

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Posted by: donbagley ( )
Date: September 20, 2023 04:01AM

Very odd for me, the Boy Scouts. I was twelve and 100% agnostic when I joined the Mormon Boy Scout troop. This was in Pennsylvania. Both scoutmasters were expert woodsmen, and the state is heavily treed. We camped out once a month on a weekend, even in the snow. I lived for those campouts. We had a brief priesthood meeting in the woods on Sundays. These were the best church meetings I ever attended. Sitting in the woods and ignoring the Mormon psychobabble was relaxing. Alas, I had but two years. Everything else about the church is garbage to me.

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Posted by: BoydKKK ( )
Date: September 20, 2023 01:25PM

BYU used to have a degree program for Professional Scouting leadership.
What happened to it? Still going, somehow?

Scouting can be a good thing. We vary and their leaders vary. Just as with so many things it can be difficult to find the right fit.

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Posted by: donbagley ( )
Date: September 22, 2023 06:59AM

I was nuts about Boy Scouts. We camped every month, and it was at least a hundred miles from my asshole father. An added bonus was being in the woods on Sunday and having a twenty minute priesthood meeting. No other services.

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Posted by: squirrely ( )
Date: September 22, 2023 11:50AM

Had great expereince as a kid and as an adult leader. Focus was always on fun and outdoor stuff not merit badges. As a leader I stayed away from all the training etc., and if I did go to a training, the first time someone said "when I was a boy" I got up and left.

As far as getting an Eagle, if you are interetsed enough to show up every week and do the work you get the eagle. Its not a big deal. You can get 10 merit badges just going to camp each summer. It was mostly the kids with parents that pushed who got eagles. The other kids were in it for the fun and hiking etc., so that was the focus. As a leader I did not care if kids got eagles.

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