The 5th point of the Scout Law tells us to be Courteous.
The other night as our Troop camped on the Oregon Coast we had an opportunity to discuss this fine point of the law.
You see, it seems that some of the Scouts did not understand the difference between having fun and being disrespectful.
By definition Courteous or Courtesy is a matter of manners and respect or consideration of others.
When it is quiet time in camp, it is quiet time in camp. That rule is not there to zap the fun out of the camping experience, rather, it is in place so that we all can enjoy a peaceful night, under the stars in the quiet of the woods.
So I found my way to the noisy patrol. They were not to hard to find. We had a discussion on Courtesy and having consideration of others. It comes down to respect and thinking of others needs before thinking of yourself.
I had the boys place their hands in front of their noses and then move their hands as far as the out stretched arm would take it. I had them focus on their hand, and then focus on what was beyond their hand.
This illustration showed them that they need to looked past themselves. To remember that there are others out there and that while they were having fun, they were taking away from the experience of the others.
The selfish act that they were demonstrating effected more than themselves.
Needless to say it got pretty quiet after that, and they still enjoyed the rest of the evening.
Too many times we let our selfish needs get in the way of courtesy. We tend to forget that by our actions we can be disrespectful and discourteous.
The Scout law asks all of us to remember to be Courteous.
Have a Great Scouting Day!