I was playing Eagle director this week and since my staff didn’t feel comfortable instructing Citizenship in the Nation it fell to me.   Each of the citizenship badges is unique in ways besides simple scale and Cit Nation repeatedly asks the question “how does this affect you?”  I generally consider this a good question except that it takes a lot of time to review these pieces with each kid.  I don’t mind using a group discussion to cover requirements that say “discuss” but stuff that says “explain” tells me that there’s an individual imperative to stay something.  This extends into the pre-requisites that in one case asks the Scout to visit a national monument and explain its importance.

A Scout claimed to have visited the Lincoln Monument but that our department somehow lost his report.  Curiously, our department happened to also lose his paperwork for each other badge he was attempting while not losing a single requirement from any other Scouts, hm…. Regardless, I said that if he could verbally review the content he’d be fine.  He responded that he couldn’t as the experience of us having lost his stuff got him so upset he couldn’t remember anything… swell.  So, I led him over to one of the department computers and let him review the Wikipedia article on the Lincoln Monument and asked him the question of “why are so many protests held at the Lincoln monument”.  After a few minutes of reading, he called me over:

Him: It’s large.
Me: Yes, it is but do you think that’s the reason?
Him: Yes, the statue is also impressive.
Me: Well, that’s why the area may work, but why do people want to be associated with Lincoln?
Him: That’s not the question you asked. I can’t believe you’re putting me through this
*Cut him off* Me: I’ll send you to an article on Lincoln *he reads for a few minutes*
Him: Because he won the Republican party nomination for president.
Me: Not entirely.
*We go back and forth with these for a bit*
Him: Ok *reads for a few minutes*  Because he was slow to abolish slavery?
Me:  That’s like asking Washington why the Revolution took so long.   How about this, you need to prove that you visited.  Do you remember what the vendors were selling near the monument?
Him: Yeah! Pretzels as big as your head.
Me: Spectacular.  You’re done.
Him: Thank you for recognizing my work.