Just the other night I had a brief conversation with a scout leader that is participating in a parade with his cub scouts...great publicity for the unit, I thought.
But the conversation quickly soured in my mouth when I found out that the leader told me how great it would be seeing his scouts hanging out of the windows, waving to the crowd, while riding in a bus.
I quickly reminded him to rethink the issues of safety and the projected image of scouts doing something unsafe, even at a slow speed and how that might be seen as a less than ideal image to present.
He didn't think that this was a problem and his response was, "the whole parade is a poor image from start to finish."
I wondered if he felt this way; why he would even bother to enter his unit in the event?
He finally thought that I was probably right and he would tell his scouts that they couldn't hang out the windows and would have to sit in the bus because, "Commissioner Keith says so."
Reminding him to consult his copy of "The Guide to Safe Scouting," and his obligation with "Youth Protection;" he might discover that the policy that the BSA established was designed for maximum safety at all cost.
Leaders fall from the pedestal of trust, that the scout families put them on, when they suddenly sacrifice safety for a fleeting chance of fun when risking the well being of their scouts and those that participate in the activity.
In short, when in doubt, refer to your Youth Protection training and "The Guide to Safe Scouting."