Today’s about remembering the life of John F. Kennedy, but it’s impossible to do so without mentioning Lee Harvey Oswald.
Kennedy was the first president to have been a Boy Scout, and earlier today I offered an in-depth look at Kennedy’s involvement with Scouting and strong positive opinion of the organization.
It’s clear our 35th president’s life was improved by his involvement in Scouting. But what if Lee Harvey Oswald had been a Scout? Would it have altered his life’s course? Would he never have taken that history-defining shot?
That’s just what California Scoutmaster Robert W. Wiley posited in the July-August 1964 issue of Scouting magazine.
I recently uncovered his editorial while browsing Scouting magazine’s digital archives, and I wanted to share it with you. Full text after the jump. Continue reading
When he was 12 years old, John F. Kennedy asked for a raise.
The year was 1929, and Kennedy was a new member of Troop 2 in Bronxville, N.Y. Now that he had reached Scout age, Kennedy reasoned, it was time for his allowance to match his new Boy Scout-level maturity.
With that in mind, he penned this letter to his father:
My recent allowance is 40 cents. This I used for aeroplanes and other playthings of childhood, but now I am a Scout and I put away my childish things. Before I would spend 20 cents of my 40 cents allowance, and in five minutes I would have empty pockets and nothing to gain and 20 cents to lose.
When I am a Scout I have to buy canteens, haversacks, blankets, searchlights, a poncho — things that will last for years and I can always use while I can’t use chocolate marshmallow sundae ice cream, and so I put in my plea for a raise of 30 cents for me to buy Scout things and pay my own way around …
Kennedy dreamed differently throughout his life, and this letter proves that his uniqueness started as a Scout. In fact, he was the first president to have been a Boy Scout. And like all presidents from William Howard Taft to Barack Obama, he served as Honorary President of the Boy Scouts of America.
And so on the 50th anniversary of his death, let’s look back on the life of the man who led our nation and was a strong advocate for Scouting. Find Scouting-related photos, the condolence telegram the BSA sent Jacqueline Kennedy and much more after the jump. Continue reading
Updated, Nov. 22 | The chat is over, but the transcript remains. See below. And stay tuned for future Ask the Expert: LIVE events!
You’ve got advancement-related questions. He’s got answers.
At 11 a.m. Central Time on Friday, Nov. 22, Chris Hunt, the BSA’s Advancement Team leader, will join us for an hourlong live chat, which you can access at the link below. (That’s noon Eastern, 10 a.m. Mountain and 9 a.m. Pacific.)
I’ll moderate, and Chris will answer your queries live. If you’d like a head start, feel free to comment below with your questions, and I’ll try to incorporate them into the live chat if there’s time.
And if you can’t make the chat, don’t fret. I’ll update this post with a transcript soon after we’re done.
If this Ask the Expert: LIVE experiment succeeds, I’ll find other BSA experts to answer your questions about other topics, including Health and Safety, the Eagle Scout Award and more.
LINK FOR THE LIVE CHAT Transcript
Click Here for the transcript (opens in a new window)
It’s been more than a year since I blogged about the switch to the Scout Oath and Scout Law in all programs, a change that primarily affects Venturing and Cub Scouting.
The resolution, passed by the National Executive Board last year, means that soon every Scout of any age will use the Scout Oath and Law instead of reciting separate, program-specific sayings. Cub Scouts will recite the Scout Oath and Law instead of the Cub Scout Promise and Law of the Pack. Similarly, Venturers will no longer use the Venturing Oath and Venturing Code.
As I said in the October 2012 post, the changes weren’t immediate. And today, I have new details about the rollout.
The rollout is timed “with the release of youth handbooks and leader aids supporting this and other changes related to Strategic Plan Goal 411.”
That means for Venturing, the change will take place in May 2014. For Cub Scouts, it’s May 2015.
Follow the jump to learn how you can get a head start on finding out about the new program changes for Venturing and Cub Scouting. Continue reading
For many Scout leaders, it’s not the Scouts that’ll turn hair gray — it’s their parents.
The team behind ScoutCast recently asked 56 experienced Scoutmasters from across the country this question: “What do you know now that you wish you knew as a new Scoutmaster?”
The overwhelming response was not handling issues with Scouts but with their parents.
So with the help of Zach Chopp-Adams, who has been a Scoutmaster or assistant Scoutmaster since he was only 18 years old and serves as Advisor for the new Section C2 in the Michigan Crossroads Council, the November ScoutCast teaches you how grown-ups can be the problem and how to handle it when they are.
Listen to the November ScoutCast here.
Cub Scout leaders, don’t miss this month’s CubCast. Details after the jump. Continue reading
Don Bennett directed Eagle Scout boards of review like a film director creating his latest masterpiece. He challenged the Eagle candidates with expertly crafted questions all with the goal of making the young man see just how his time in Scouting has formed who he is. He brought out the best in people.
That deft touch in Eagle Scout boards of review is what David Watson will remember most about Don, who died earlier this year.
David wrote a touching tribute to Don (pictured above) and gave me permission to share it with you all. You’ll find it’s about more than just a great man; it’s about the attitude he brought to an Eagle Scout board of review. Consider it mandatory reading for anyone who may some day sit on an Eagle Scout board of review and decide the fate of an Eagle candidate.
Find the tribute, edited for style, after the jump. Continue reading
The battle for fundraising dollars is on.
At offices everywhere, parents peddle pizza dough, flower bulbs, Christmas wreaths and more to their coworkers in the name of financing their kids’ extracurricular activities. It seems every orchestra, soccer team and stamp-collecting club in a 50-mile radius wants your money.
In this sometimes-cutthroat world, surely there’s a way for packs and troops to make their fundraisers stand out from the crowd. But how? Continue reading
An Eagle Scout who was shot in the leg during Friday’s deadly attack at Los Angeles International Airport credits first-aid training he learned as a Scout with saving his life.
Brian Ludmer, a 29-year-old California teacher and former member of Lake Forest, Ill., Troop 48, used a makeshift tourniquet to stop the bleeding in his leg and keep himself alive.
In an interview with NBC News, Dan Stepenosky, superintendent of Ludmer’s school district, said Ludmer’s Scouting skills proved invaluable.
“He dragged himself to a nearby closet, closed the door and relied on his old Boy Scouts training to create a makeshift tourniquet to help slow the bleeding,” Stepenosky said.
Ludmer, who remains in good condition at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, earned his Eagle Scout Award in 2002. To reach Scouting’s highest rank, Ludmer had to earn the First Aid merit badge, which teaches Scouts both how to apply a tourniquet and the benefits and risks of doing so. Continue reading
Shane Victorino already had Eagle Scout, 2008 World Series champion and three-time Gold Glove winner on his list of accomplishments.
Tonight, the Boston Red Sox outfielder added 2013 World Series champion to his résumé, and he did so with a timely swing of the bat in the bottom of the third. With the bases loaded and two outs, Victorino delivered a three-run double that gave the Red Sox a 3-0 lead that they wouldn’t relinquish. (Watch an animated GIF of the hit here.)
“My parents always told me to take every moment, live every moment, love every moment,” he said in a post-game interview broadcast on FOX. “I just went up there and said, hey, I get another moment. … It’s time to shine, do what you can, and I was able to get in a good hitter’s count. I was able to put a ball off the wall and enjoyed every moment of it.”
Victorino’s hit provided all the runs the Red Sox needed to win the game, 6-1, and their eighth World Series championship.
It had to have been especially sweet for Victorino, who sat out Games 4 and 5 with lower back tightness, to come up big in a critical situation in Game 6. But then again, this Eagle Scout has been impressing people all his life.
Whichever Major League team you cheer for (if any), let’s all give a big round of applause to this member of the Scouting team.
Victorino on Scouting
Read Victorino’s 2010 interview with Boys’ Life
Shane with some Boston-area Scouts
The Boston Minuteman Council shared the photo below on its Facebook page: Continue reading