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#81 GeorgiaMom

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Posted 14 July 2014 - 10:23 AM

I think you failed to understand my point. I never said "no big deal" those are your words, not mine. Alcohol violations are generally given a pass in this society unless it involves a motor vehicle. Alcohol is much more likely to kill especially when considering interactions with other substances. I also never said anything about keeping this information from the rest of the troop. That would be nearly impossible anyway. Your points are valid, but don't put words in my mouth.

I apologize if I mischaracterized you. Statements like "reefer madness hysteria" downplay the damage done by THC. GeorgiaMom
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#82 fred johnson

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Posted 14 July 2014 - 04:53 PM

Sentinel947 ... Tough situation - I agree.


It is strange, but I do have more sympathy for rank advancement than for membership. I fully believe scouts "earn" advancement. So if the scout can make amends for his action, I'm okay with it. Advancement is not the goal of scouting, but it is something scouts value. So I have sympathy there ... after he makes amends.

Plus pot is just not that big a deal anymore. Many kids have tried it. It's everywhere at high schools and somewhat in middle schools. So I sort of view this as a "whoops" depending on the kid and the situation. Him and his family and the courts will work it out. I'll let him continue his advancement journey if he wants ... after closes out the issue.


As for membership, I'm very utilitarian. Troops have to recruit or they die. And, families want their troops to be a place of safety and innocence for their sons. A kid dealing with an in-the-troop drug incident is a big big issue for membership.


That's why my priorities are inverted and it might seem strange for people to believe that. Plus, who knows. The scout will be going through tough issues. Perhaps by working together on those last few advancement steps during this critical time we can talk about character issues and choices and maybe scouting can be a safe haven for him for a few months longer.
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#83 qwazse

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Posted 14 July 2014 - 09:55 PM

.... Now ask me how much I appreciate a 15 year old giving my son weed behind my back with the knowledge of an sm who has decided in his own infinite wisdom ​that " reefer madness" is "no big deal". You can't dispute that weed is Everything is a big deal when your child is failing in school and you're trying everything you can thing of to fix it. I was told that scouting can be great therapy for autistic kids. Please don't let the PC drug culture ruin that. ..... SM's should not have discretionary power to expose my child to this once they are aware of it.

I couldn't agree with you more, except for one thing: it could just as easily turn out that our sons are the perpetrators. So all of us best only withhold forgiveness to the degree we won't need any ourselves.
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#84 Lurking...

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Posted 15 July 2014 - 06:28 AM

With drugs floating around at school, in churches, at the Boy & Girls Clubs, at the mall, at the YMCA, and just about every other place a kid hangs out, when we see an incident like this in Scouting we get all Chicken Little about it. Somewhere along the way we have latched onto the uber sensitive idea that BSA is exempt from the normal course of life out there and this idealized program is the miracle cure-all for their son's ills. Sorry to have to inform everyone, but Scouting is the means to get the boys ready for a life that has these things all around them and they are going to have to learn to live with it with appropriate choices. If one want their sons to be exempt from any and all of these issues, they will need to institutionalize them, because these things are out there in the real world. Of course institutionalizing them isn't going to solve this problem either. So what's the issue here? A boy got caught selling pot? Or there are drugs out there so prevalent that even at a scouting event your son is going to have to face real life choices every day? How many of the scouts got and smoked some of this boy's merchandize that the SM never found out about? Getting caught is usually only the tip of the iceberg. Now there's a thought that will keep Chicken Little up all night worrying about. Stosh
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#85 GeorgiaMom

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Posted 15 July 2014 - 08:06 AM

Jblake, you seem to have forgotten your scout spirit. "Institutionalize" is a harsh word to throw out to parents dealing with very real medical problems in their children. I do worry about my autistic son. I worry about the physical bullying he's already run into in elementary school. I worry about drugs and God knows what else in middle and high school. He is the sweetest little boy. No trouble at all in scouts or school, just vulnerable due to a medical condition he can't help. I wish scouts would make up their minds. Some tout the program as a safe haven for disabled kids to grow, where a higher standard off behavior is taught and expected. Others, like jblake, say it's a real world environment where drug dealers are a normal part of life. If an adult sold or gave illegal drugs to a child, he would be in jail. Why should a minor get a free pass? Is the scout in the op such an innocent that he didn't know drugs were illegal? If the scouts aren't committed to teaching and expecting a higher standard of behavior than the local public school of ymca, then why does it even exist? For the pretty uniforms and overpriced camps? GeorgiaMom
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#86 Lurking...

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Posted 15 July 2014 - 09:43 AM

Jblake, you seem to have forgotten your scout spirit. "Institutionalize" is a harsh word to throw out to parents dealing with very real medical problems in their children.


Not really, how far would one have to go to isolate one's child from the world? Unless one is planning on locking their children up in their house somewhere, I don't know of anything other than institutions that can come close to protecting people from the outside world and protecting the outside world from certain people.

I do worry about my autistic son. I worry about the physical bullying he's already run into in elementary school. I worry about drugs and God knows what else in middle and high school. He is the sweetest little boy. No trouble at all in scouts or school, just vulnerable due to a medical condition he can't help.


As would any parent. No one who has kids owns the ultimate concern over their children as a parent. I would seriously doubt any parent out there that has a child with the intent of having them grow up to be a serial killer.

I wish scouts would make up their minds. Some tout the program as a safe haven for disabled kids to grow, where a higher standard off behavior is taught and expected. Others, like jblake, say it's a real world environment where drug dealers are a normal part of life.


My formative years were in the 1960's. I think it is reasonable to assume that I have spent my life in a drug cultured society and for the past 50 years it has gotten progressively worse.

If an adult sold or gave illegal drugs to a child, he would be in jail. Why should a minor get a free pass? Is the scout in the op such an innocent that he didn't know drugs were illegal?


And kids today know enough that in some states one can walk into a store and purchase pot with no hassle whatsoever. We live in a
society of double standards. That's yet another lesson our children should learn as well.

If the scouts aren't committed to teaching and expecting a higher standard of behavior than the local public school of ymca, then why does it even exist? For the pretty uniforms and overpriced camps?

GeorgiaMom


Yes and also for moral character development, leadership development, and a few other things that the other programs don't really teach. And for the most part, a lot of parents don't either. The more BSA buckles under to societal pressure to conform, the more it will become what our society is: the real world that one grows up in and basically doesn't understand very well until they get well into adulthood. Good luck in guiding your child through that gauntlet.

Stosh
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#87 qwazse

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Posted 15 July 2014 - 09:45 AM

Jblake, you seem to have forgotten your scout spirit. "Institutionalize" is a harsh word to throw out to parents dealing with very real medical problems in their children.

Rhetoric can be rough sometimes. Let's substitute "build a hedge around" and move on from there OK?

I wish I could say there was a way we could slap one bad actor so hard, that it will discourage the other ones.
I wish I could say that there was at least one neighborhood where you could go and be free of this stuff. The now-deceased director of our county health department gave a lecture that disavowed me of all such notions.
I wish I could say that homes where some particular scripture is upheld raise kids who are immune to all of this, that if you see such a home, their kids would be the best match for your kids.

I've seen shock and disappointment in too many friends to believe any of that constitutes a hedge.

Should we hold scouts to a higher standard?
Yes.

Should we let thugs know they aren't welcome in our units?
Yes.

Do our scouts need to be kind and supportive to boys with disabilities?
Yes.

Can we guarantee they always will be?
No.

Can you guarantee your son won't be one of those thugs in four years?
Sounds like your odds are above average, but ...

When you and your son get to know the boys in your troop, and the one who is nicest to your son turns out to be the thug, will you want that thug out of there?
Probably.

... forever?
I'm not so sure GAmom. Because it sounds like you're the kind of person on whom a bunch of boys will grow. Even if you're not an SM, these boys will become your boys and there'll even be a place for the thug among them. Chances are, that might be the one thing that'll keep him from staying a thug.

I do worry ...


Well that's the mom's burden, isn't it? Thanks for bearing it.:)
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#88 MattR

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Posted 15 July 2014 - 10:08 AM

There are a couple of details I should add about this boy. My troop has more than it's share of kids with issues. Aspergers, ADHD, PTSD, a kid whose parents are in jail, and who knows what caused by medications (why does it take you a half hour to make a bowl of cereal?). The boy of the OP is probably one of the best kids in the troop at getting these other kids to participate. He has plenty of good to work with. That's not a pass for the bad, but it's enough for me to try. There are other scouts that, if they did this, I'd just show them the door and say that's it. This kid doesn't fit that. Secondly, I have since found out his offering to another boy was entirely caused by another scout walking in on the boy and asking him if he was smoking mj. i.e., he was busted and the first, stupid, thing that came to mind was "don't tell anyone and you can have some." This kid is not trying to deal.
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#89 fred johnson

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Posted 15 July 2014 - 11:40 AM

MattR ... nice comments ...

Your troop sounds sort of like ours, dead on. Aspergers, ADHD, PTSD, kids whose mother is in jail, medications, etc etc. At a court of honor, my wife said the troop was filled with more than our share of special needs.

Please please please forgive me for ever thinking this ... but I wonder if that is a potential problem that scouting has these days. Medical practitioners and others have recognized that scouting can be good for kids facing social challenges and other challenges.

So scouting becomes a treatment option.

It is strange because those same kids seem to get weeded out of baseball, football and other sports programs ... or so I think ... I don't have real evidence. I just see a high sports drop out rate 3rd grade and up and it's during those years that social issues become more visible.

I'm glad to help. I'm glad that my kids socialize and get to know that kids with special needs are okay too and can have normal friendships. It's just that when your own kids don't have aspergers, ADHD, PTSD or other similar conditions and well over half the troop does, you begin to wonder if you should find a place with a lower ratio of special needs that would better serve your own son.

Anyway ... it's something I think about. My apologies even for even thinking about it.
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#90 Scouter99

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Posted 15 July 2014 - 02:57 PM

That's not a pass for the bad, but it's enough for me to try. There are other scouts that, if they did this, I'd just show them the door and say that's it. This kid doesn't fit that


Oh boy, the kids with the least resources get the boot but the golden boy gets the golden parachute. Have fun with the fallout when you kick the next kid out but not this one.
Now that the troubled kids know golden boy has the hookup I bet he'll be even better at motivating them to show up.

#91 GeorgiaMom

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Posted 15 July 2014 - 07:11 PM

.... Medical practitioners and others have recognized that scouting can be good for kids facing social challenges and other challenges. So scouting becomes a treatment option.


Scouting is not a treatment option. I just got back from one of my son's weekly treatments. $300 a pop with a PhD who has 20 years worth of professional experience treating kids with autism and auditory issues.

The idea that scouting is a treatment for any medical condition is ridiculous. We take our son to medical professionals for that.

What we do hope for from scouting is an environment free of bullying. I want my son to simply be able to take part to the best of.his ability. He is quiet and gentle. His biggest sin is that he sometimes can't hear the leader and that he has poor gross motor skills. I fail to see how he has negatively impacted any of the other boys.

We will likely be dropping out of team sports this year. My son loves basketball, and had been involved in a small church league for the last 4 years. He loves it and does his best, but he isn't a star athlete.

Last season was awful. None of the other boys would pass to him during games. On the rare occasions when he did actually get his hands on the ball, one teammate would constantly grab it.out of my son's hands so he could get yet another basket. My son effectively was blocked from playing.

I asked the other kid's mother to ask her son to stop, and explained that my son has a disability. Her reply? "Why shouldn't my son do his best because of your kid?". How Christian of her.

I'm not going to institutionalize my son or pull him out of scouts because of his disability. Anyone who thinks we're too inconvenient to have around can pound sand.

There but for the grace of God go you. Your child is one car accident or bad fall.away from dealing with the medical, educational, and financial.burden we deal with every day. Try to extend the same grace you hope you would receive in our shoes.


GeorgiaMom
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#92 King Ding Dong

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Posted 15 July 2014 - 09:44 PM

"Try to extend the same grace you hope you would receive in our shoes." Is suppose that sentence has different meaning to us both.
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#93 Lurking...

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Posted 15 July 2014 - 10:00 PM

And what makes one think that the rest of us don't have problems we deal with as well as parents? My son made the local boys' choir (one of the top in the nation, tours Europe, etc.) and did so with a perfect audition. He lasted less than a year because the conductor didn't think he needed his ADHD medication. The public school was legally forced to deal with him and the school was also sued for denying him his civil rights and he won. It's not just other boys, sometimes adults are just as bad bullying kids as other kids so no one out there is exempt. My boy has now gone about 7-8 years without communicating with anyone in his family as a result of his and many other factors that turned a nice kid into someone who can't function in the real world. There are no guarantees in this life. The best we can do is get the boys prepared, i.e. Be Prepared, for what life has to throw at them. Stosh
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#94 fred johnson

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Posted 16 July 2014 - 10:37 AM

Ya know, I just wanted to share. I am sad you just can't take my thoughts at face value without jumping all over it.

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GeorgiaMom ... Treatment option ... You are being unfair. Youth with special needs have multiple treatment paths that are pursued concurrently. Yes, your son has extremely trained doctors and physical therapists and occupational therapists and probably others and special help in schools, etc, etc. But medical professionals do often suggest scouting as part of options to help their patients. It addresses social, physical and skills needs. It is a very very very good outlet. You might not like me using the term "treatment option" but when it is suggested by doctors I consider it exactly that.


GeorgiaMom & jblake47 ... I know life is very hard with kids with special needs. Just don't infer I'm not sensitive to this. We each have our own issues and none of us get through life without difficulty. Plus our troop in no way could function if us adult leaders who are at camp month in and month out did not deal with these issues. Many of us have taken special training both at University of Scouting and through community education. We are very sensitive to it and very supportive. As a parent, I've worked with my children to also be understanding, supportive and teach them to be inclusive of everyone in the troop.

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My point is just that kids are just kids and everyone in scouts is a volunteer, youth and adults. You may have had to use your legal rights to get schools to respond. But I can't make families bring their kids to scouts. Heck, my kids don't always want to attend either. Scouting depends so so much on the social abilities of the scouts and socializing disorders does affect the program.

I'm just wonder how socializing disorders affects current membership issues and the perception of scouting.

Imagine an average eleven year old trying to make friends. But the kid he meets stares blankly at him or walks away or won't listen or does something that is socially very awkward. I can't be there every moment to smooth the situation. Heck, in a properly functioning troop, I'm not hovering and I am 300 feet away most of the day.

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There is a local troop that does not seem to have these issues. They are known as a backpacking troop and they go twelve months a year backpacking. High skills. High standards because they need those standards to stay safe. No car camping. No troop trailer filled with heavy equipment and shelters and big big tents. No easy outs if you are not prepared.

IMHO, their program scares away or weeds out kids with special needs. Maybe they have one or two. But there is no way they could function as a troop and do what they do with over 50% with such needs.

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Again, I apologize if this offends you. I just think about it at times.

Just don't think I'm not sympathetic and supportive.

...................................................

If you want to discuss this further, branch into another thread. This thread was for MattR's questions.

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#95 Longhaired_Mac

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 10:58 PM

The Boyscouts refuse membership or kick boys out for being Atheists, for not believing in a greater power. They believe such belief is core to personal growth and as such an Atheist Scout MAY NOT fullfill his best potential.

The Boyscouts kick out boys who are gay or transgendered, because of a fundamental belief that who they are may not be ok. That any form of homosexuality is morally wrong and that such a boy MIGHT behave immorally during scouting activities.

This Boy DID break a civilian law as well as scout law and his scout oath (mentally awake? I don't think so. Morally straight? Still not thinking so). He DID offer it to others, younger and impressionable scouts. When policy has others being refused membership or kicked out for what they might or might not do, this boy should definitely be kicked out for what he DID do. No eagle scout, no pat on the back and saying good try next time you will do better. If he is almost eagle then he has had the opportunity within the troop to know right from wrong and be mature enough to answer for his actions through experiences if not in age.

I live in Washington where it is now legal to buy pot, 3 stores within 15 minutes of my house! My son is almost 12 and very impressionable to the older Boys activities. We all know kids steal cigarettes, booze, or dirty magazines from older siblings or adults in the household out of curiosity. Now the likelihood of pot being easily accessible and stolen in similar fashion and ending up on a camp-out is a guarantee. Policy and examples need to be made now before its not one boy shaming scouts here and there but entire troops.
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#96 Rick_in_CA

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Posted 19 July 2014 - 12:00 AM

The Boyscouts kick out boys who are gay or transgendered, because of a fundamental belief that who they are may not be ok. That any form of homosexuality is morally wrong and that such a boy MIGHT behave immorally during scouting activities.

You do know this isn't true anymore right?

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#97 qwazse

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Posted 19 July 2014 - 04:27 AM

I'd take up Mac's "throw the bums out" mantra if I saw it working. That is if, as a result, contraband would never show up at camp again. If it didn't result in a gang of kids bragging that they are the "kicked out of BS" gang. In general, MattR's more cautiously balanced approach is more likely to yield the desired result. The road off the cliff rarely takes you to the summit.
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#98 Longhaired_Mac

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Posted 19 July 2014 - 03:56 PM

You do know this isn't true anymore right?


I do know that it isn't true anymore, I was trying to make a point contrasting what might be and what was for affect. However those policy even removed, intentionally or not, did set a precedence that hard lines can be drawn. When it comes to drugs I feel, and it's IMHO for sure, high expectations and strict consequences need to be in place. Policies made strategically beforehand rather than later reactively usually work far better.

Is there a criteria set down by National to deal with drug possession and distribution by a boy or an adult while on scout properties or outings? The corruption of minors?
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#99 Lurking...

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Posted 19 July 2014 - 07:41 PM

Doesn't anyone talk to the boys about this stuff BEFORE they are tempted to do it? Every year, all my boys go through the pamphlet exercise, first year with parents, every year after with the troop leadership. I have served youth for 40+ years beginning in the initial stages of the drug revolution of the 60's all the way up until now. I have never had a problem like this, but my boys know exactly what the scout oath and law is all about and how it is carried out both in and outside of scouting. Maybe it's just the midwest part of the country I live in, I don't know, but I have dealt with youth groups out on the west coast and they were just fine. If one is going to teach adulthood to these kids one has to rely on a lot more than just the BSA rank requirements to get these boys ready for life. Stosh
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#100 Engineer61

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Posted 19 August 2014 - 01:36 PM

Yikes ... been hearing more and more about pot at various kid functions...not good ... Rules are rules... rules for all of us are called laws....of course they vary from locale to locale...but in general terms ... If you offer a minor tobacco, alcohol, OTC drugs, illegal drugs or sexual contact ... it's a crime of some sort...that's a job for legal authorities....you break the big rules, you get the big consequences. The kid has problems far bigger than whether or not he Eagles. If he's offered pot up at Scout camp then he's done so elsewhere...
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