When should Scouts wear hats indoors?

Tuesday-TalkbackWear your hat outside; don’t wear your hat inside.

Seems simple, but it’s not that easy. Take, for example, this exception from the BSA’s Guide to Awards and Insignia [PDF]:

Official headgear may be worn while the unit or individual is participating in an indoor formal ceremony or service duty, except in religious institutions where custom forbids.

Typical indoor activities of this type are flag ceremonies, inspections, orderly duty, or ushering service. In any informal indoor activity where no official ceremony is involved, the headgear is removed as when in street clothes.

There are ceremonial reasons for leaving headgear on, but there are practical ones, too. Requiring boys to remove their hats at the beginning of a Cub Scout pack or den meeting likely would result in most of those boys losing their hats by the meeting’s end. Tough to misplace a hat if it’s on your head.

Social customs are changing, too. There was a time when men removed their hats when in the presence of a woman, but those days have passed — for better or worse.

What I’m saying is the answer isn’t black and white. So let’s discuss this gray area in this week’s Tuesday Talkback. Tell me: What’s your unit’s hat policy? And how’d you decide it?

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“No Hats” photo from Flickr: Some rights reserved by Rusty Clark

About Bryan Wendell 3282 Articles
Bryan Wendell, an Eagle Scout, is the founder of Bryan on Scouting and a contributing writer.