A comment in another thread got me thinking again about the stigma of being a scout, wearing the uniform and having friends see you in public as a scout when it's not considered a "cool" thing to do. When I was a kid, the neckerchief was often the most despised part of the uniform, and some of us opted for bolos instead, although in hindsight I'm not sure it was any better of a look.
I've never been involved in a unit that voted to not wear neckerchiefs, although I've heard of some that do vote to go without them. Historically they served a practical purpose, but they were also larger back in the early days and their usefulness in things like first aid was far greater. Today, in their current size and shape, there isn't much use for them beyond uniform wear and unit identification, which is redundant.
Has the time come for the BSA to consider a more formal reduction of the neckerchief in uniform wear?
If one were to follow the example of National, you'd think neckerchiefs were already long gone. Few (if any) folks from National are ever seen wearing one. Many adult leaders leave them off, even in units where the policy is to wear them.
Just wanted to hear some thoughts on this. If your unit wears neckerchiefs, why? And if not, also, why?
In my opinion, this seems like one of the easiest changes we would potentially make to reduce some of the "uncool" factor of being in uniform, especially when there is no practical reason to wear them anyway. How many kids quit because of pressure from non-scout friends, or the perception that it's lame or dorky or whatever to be a scout? I don't expect that removing the neckerchief will completely change the school-age perception of the program, but if it helps at all in making the kids feel more comfortable in uniform, I say ditch the neckerchief.
Edited by EmberMike, 28 February 2017 - 10:25 AM.