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About AskAndy

Andy is a Board Member of the U.S. Scouting Service Project, Inc.

Andy is currently serving as a Unit Commissioner. He has previously served in a number of Scouting roles including Assistant Council Commissioner, Cubmaster, Scoutmaster, Den Leader, and Senior Patrol Leader as youth member. His awards include: Distinguished Commissioner, Doctor of Commissioner Science, International Scouter Award, District Award of Merit (2), Scoutmaster Award of Merit, Scouter's Key (3), Daniel Carter Beard & Cliff Dochterman Awards, James E. West Fellow (2), Wood Badge & Sea Badge, and Eagle Scout & Explorer Silver Award.

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Author Archive | AskAndy
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Issue 407 – July 29, 2014

________________________________________ These 407 (and counting) columns offer advice to Scouts and Scouters, parents and professional staffers, but sometimes—like now—I defer to others. This is one of those situations where, in response to carious questions about the American flag for which answers can’t be found in the handbook or U.S. Flag Code, I’ve reached out to [...]

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Issue 406 – July 22, 2014

________________________________________ Dear Andy, Why is it that the Boy Scouts doesn’t have a “square knot” for our American military veterans? In thinking about the “do my duty…to my country” part of the Scout Oath, it just seems so natural, especially since the Scouts’ founder, Lt. Gen. Baden-Powell, wore his military ribbons on his Scout uniform. [...]

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Issue 405 – July 15, 2014

________________________________________ Dear Andy, During our troop’s recent week-long summer camp in the Adirondack Forest Preserve, our Scoutmaster and Assistant Scoutmaster did something leaving me seeking advice. I’ll admit that the senior patrol, which I’m a member of, had been slacking a little in performance. Although we were still cooking all our meals, in the morning [...]

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Issue 404 – July 10, 2014

________________________________________ Hi Andy, About those patriotic veterans who found fault with Cub Scouts carrying the American flag horizontally, yes, the US Flag Code does say it shouldn’t be carried flat. But it goes on to say that “This code is the guide for all handling and display of the Stars and Stripes. It does not [...]

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Issue 403 – July 1, 2014

________________________________________ Independence Day is just three days away so let’s consider what Benjamin Franklin had to say about democracy and liberty… “DEMOCRACY is two wolves and a lamb deciding the lunch menu; LIBERTY is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote.” ========== Dear Andy, Can an Assistant Scoutmaster sign off on a merit badge requirement if [...]

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Issue 402 – June 25, 2014

________________________________________ Dear Andy, Does a Boy Scout troop have to accept all boys who want to join? I’m asking because we’re a troop in a small town. There were a couple of parents who didn’t like the way the troop was being run, even though two Unit Commissioners and a council professional say we’re doing [...]

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Issue 401 – June 18, 2014

________________________________________ Hello Andy, I’m the camping coordinator for a BSA troop based in England. We’d planned on attending British camp this summer, but the camp isn’t going to open this year due to low sign-ups and funding problems. Consequently, we and a neighboring troop have decided to put together a program for our Scouts as [...]

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Issue 400 – June 10, 2014

________________________________________ The universe is composed of three things: matter, emptiness, and opinions. Unfortunately, the latter two are often confused with one another. ================================================================ Hi Andy, Our troop and district have always told Scouts that they can’t use pressure treated lumber for Eagle service projects and such. But I can’t find anything online stating why, and [...]

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Issue 399 – June 3, 2014

________________________________________ Dear Andy, For the National Outdoor Badge—Camping Segment, if a Scout spends the summer as a camp counselor at his local Scout camp, and stays in the same kind of tent that he would have were he a camper at summer camp, do all those days/nights of camping count toward this badge/segment? (Bob Fales, [...]

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Issue 398 – May 27, 2014

________________________________________ Have you ever noticed that, when somebody misreads or misinterprets an advancement requirement, it somehow never favors the Scout? Here’s yet another case in point… Hi Andy, My son’s a First Class Scout. He’s just completed all requirements for Star including a total of eight merit badges to date. All eight of his merit [...]

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