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Boy Scouts to continue review of membership policy, take action at May meeting

The Boy Scouts of America’s executive board has directed committees to continue an exhaustive review of the BSA’s policy barring gays and lesbians from the program. The approximately 1,400 voting members of the national council will take action on the resolution at the national meeting in May 2013 in Grapevine, Texas.

Please read the full text of the BSA’s release:

For 103 years, the Boy Scouts of America has been a part of the fabric of this nation, providing it’s youth program of character development and values-based leadership training.   In the past two weeks, Scouting has received an outpouring of feedback from the American public. It reinforces how deeply people care about Scouting and how passionate they are about the organization.

After careful consideration and extensive dialogue within the Scouting family, along with comments from those outside the organization, the volunteer officers of the Boy Scouts of America’s National Executive Board concluded that due to the complexity of this issue, the organization needs time for a more deliberate review of its membership policy.

To that end, the executive board directed its committees to further engage representatives of Scouting’s membership and listen to their perspectives and concerns.  This will assist the officers’ work on a resolution on membership standards. The approximately 1,400 voting members of the national council will take action on the resolution at the national meeting in May 2013.

View the PDF of the release at this link.

506 Comments on Boy Scouts to continue review of membership policy, take action at May meeting

  1. Connie Knie // February 6, 2013 at 9:50 am //

    I just responded on the National Facebook page as well asking what happened to A Scout is Brave? No matter what the decision is going to be it needs to be made.

    • Dan Smith // February 6, 2013 at 7:52 pm //

      I am extremely disappointed in the BSA announcement today. I have been a volunteer leader for 29 years and expect to do so for several more years regardless of the outcome of this vote. Pandora’s Box was opened with the announcement of this proposal and the only way to close the box and to end the uncertainty and resulting carnage is to quickly make a decision and vote. This is not something new that has suddenly been thrust on them as serious debate on this issue has been going on for a long time and they have the membership numbers and financial reports in front of them. Make a decision! Ou council has lost 4 chartervpartnerscthis week and a major FOS Donor. I’m not sure we can afford 3 more months of this.

  2. Good. They’re going to take their time and hear everyone out. I like it.

    • OlderScouter // February 7, 2013 at 6:28 am //

      mikemenn,

      They’ve been tossing this around for years. How much further are they going to kick this can down the road? It’s not like it’s going to go away if they keep ignoring it.

  3. Last Sunday was Scout Sunday at the Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd and at many other houses of worship across the country. Young men in khaki uniforms and merit badge sashes helped our ushers with bulletins and the collection basket, and we publicly thanked our troop leaders for their great work.

    The only remarkable aspect of that picture is that Good Shepherd is not just the sponsor of a Boy Scout troop and a Cub Scout pack but also an inclusive congregation — a faith community that gladly includes anyone regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity. We celebrated our first same-gender marriage in December after voters in Washington State backed marriage equality. We are part of a denomination that allows congregations to call gay and lesbian pastors.

    Reconciling these facets of our congregational personality can create a paradox. For a congregation to be truly inclusive, it needs to be able to welcome everyone, even those who don’t want to welcome everyone. While some people question our affiliation with the Boy Scouts of America, many of our strongest LGBT advocates see our troop sponsorship as an opportunity to demonstrate that welcome to the scouts and their parents.

    Don’t think that we accept the anti-gay policy of scouting’s national organization, because we believe it diminishes the scouting program that we cherish. No matter how hard we work at the troop level to be inclusive, the national policy will push some families away. Since scouting is part of our ministry to youth, the national policy hurts our congregation. We’ll gladly take scouting warts and all, but we look forward to the day when our troop can express as generous a welcome to LGBT families as our congregation does.

    Indeed it is hard to imagine how the national policy could actually be applied in a community that respects gays and lesbians. Are we really supposed to tell an elementary principal that he can’t be an assistant scoutmaster because of his sexual orientation? Do we exclude “avowed homosexuals” whose only vow is one of marriage, sanctioned by the state and performed by a Lutheran pastor? Do we really tell a lesbian married couple that only one mom should attend the court of honor?

    The national policy needs to change, but it need not come at the expense of other faith communities with other beliefs. Last Sunday was Scout Sunday at the Mormon church too. It is important that scouting work for many faiths, and in fact it does. Indeed, with the notable exception of the policy toward gays, scouting has been incredibly successful at encouraging a spiritual dimension of youth without endorsing any particular faith or denomination.

    The national scouting leaders have proposed to accommodate these differences by letting individual unit sponsors make their own decisions about whether to include LBGT people as troop volunteers and whether to include gay boys as scouts. This approach respects the range of conscience-bound views held by scouting families.

    The Lutheran church followed a similar “local option” path in 2009 when it changed its policy toward LGBT clergy. The ELCA did not compel every congregation to accept gay or lesbian clergy, but it allowed a congregation to make that decision for itself based on where it saw God leading them. The ELCA recognized that the sexual orientation of their clergy was not a core matter of faith for the denomination.

    A local option approach for scouting puts the sexual orientation issue where it belongs. It is not a core value of scouting. The leaders of our scout troop are emphatic in saying that they don’t want to be an anti-gay troop or a gay-friendly troop; they want to provide the best of scouting to all the boys and their families. For some sponsoring organizations, sexual orientation may be fundamental. For Good Shepherd Lutheran and many other congregations, scouting best serves our mission to youth when it respects our welcome of all people.

    • My opinion….
      The BSA will decide to either stay with the policy they have-(seriously doubt it) -OR- take NO position on this policy at all-( I see them doing this).
      It’s in the BSA’s best bu$ineSS interest to rethink this policy of “banning gays and lesbians” because it’s costing them corporate sponsorship money. If they “delete’ this policy -OR- re-write it to simply state that they neither endorse nor deny the LGBT community to be members in Scouting, and defer it to the Unit-Chartering Organization level – they stand a better chance of retaining or continuing to get the money that they’re losing right now. BOTTOM LINE: It’s all about money to them. This isn’t even addressing the tens of thousands they most likely spend these days in litigation costs in defending the policy they presently have??!!

    • You choose to use colorful and fancy words to attempt to justify your denominations sinful behavior in not following God’s written Word with regard obediently acknowledging homosexuality as an abomination to the temple of the Holy Spirit; God’s creation of man… There is no such thing as homosexual marriage in the eyes of God.. Marriage is a convenant between a man, a woman, and God.. God will never be part of a homosexual marriage so there will never be such a thing as a true homosexual marriage in the eyes of God.. This is just the truth; accept it or not.. Just because the militant homosexual aggressors have taken over your denomination it doesn’t make your denomination Godly on the issue of homosexuality and marriage and church leadership… God will woo your denomination back into obedience with His will known to me, you and all Christians who choose to read His Holy Word; the only way we know His true nature… I guess your denomination will either become obedient or remain disobedient but God will never change his mind on the issue.. homosexuality is an abomination in the eyes of God and sinful requiring forgiveness from Him in order to remain in a close relationship with Him.. Just truths; fancy words don’t change truths.. homosexuals will never change His true Word; will they??

    • The BSA policy concerning not allowing homosexuals, atheists, and agnostics to become members of their Godly organization does not have to change to appease you or any other human being on earth… They have policies based in Biblical Principles to appease a Godly mission to help nurture and build the character of you who choose to follow God’s written Word as He gave it to us in His Bible.. Just because your denomination has decided to ignore His word with regard to God’s declaration that Homosexuality is an abomination against His creation doesn’t mean that you can control everyone to follow your sinful ways of teaching His Word.. You should be more prayerful on this issue and listen closely to the Holy Spirit.. Truths never change; not in this modern day, past modern days or future modern days.. His Word is timeless and you can’t pick and choose which of His words you want to believe or not believe.. You have a responsibility as well as I have a responsibility to mold our characters to become more like Christ; I don’t think God is going to change His mind just to make you and your Lutheran denomination happy!! do you really believe that?? If you do then as the scouts would say “Be Prepared” for Him as He finds His ways to woo you all back into a closer relationship with Him.. He has His ways; some are gentle and some are firm…. but your always free to choose; part of what makes us beautiful when we choose to freely grow closer to Him….

      • ronwfox@aol.com // February 6, 2013 at 5:50 pm //

        Wallace – the BSA’s policies are NOT based on Biblical principles. From it’s very beginning the BSA has accepted members of all faiths. In my own experience I have attended a Scouting banquet for a unit sponsored by (and made up of members of) a Buddhist temple, although with a professional Scouter from the local Council. I have met Scouts from all over the world who are of a great many faiths. In fact, there are probably more Scouts professing Islam than there are any other single religion.

        • Every Godly faith understands homosexuality is sinful behavior or its really not a truly Godly organization.. There is only one True God.. I wonder if your free to join the Islamic Scouts of America.. Never heard of one; why don’t you go make one?? Wonder what that organization is like or would be like.. Let me know how you like it if you have the courage to go join it.. I can’t imagine what that might be like..

        • Wallace -
          The BSA welcomes Islamic Scouts. There is no need for an “Islamic Scouts of America” organization – Muslims are welcome in the BSA.
          The BSA also welcomes Hindu Scouts, Buddhist Scouts, Jewish Scouts, and even Pagan or Wiccan Scouts.

          A Scout is Reverent. He respects the beliefs of others.

          Many religions welcome homosexuals into their congregations. COs should be able to follow their own moral teachings when it comes to deciding who to welcome to their troops.

        • As an Eagle Scout & Leader with many many years of scouting experience I’ll “respectfully” say that you are either a liar or that you completely misunderstand the truth about the BSA. BSA Scouting is a Godly organization. The world scouting organization can freely choose to do whatever they freely choose to do. I don’t try to control the world scouting organization and I’m tolerant with regard to whatever they choose to do. I’m a member of the BSA, Boy Scouts of America. I say the Scout Oath and live the Scout Law. My choice; feely made. I will stand up against aggressive militant homosexuals and their supporters who are trying to destroy the BSA with their immoral pursuits of an equality that has no biblical support; equality isn’t biblical; understand that if your a biblical person; I am. This is from an old BSA Scout manual that I have which specifically addresses what “Morally Straight” means in the Scout Oath. “George Washington said that morality cannot be lasting without religion. A morally straight Scout knows how to love and serve God in the way He wants Him to. We are created by God and we owe certain duties to this Heavenly Father of all of us. You learn to perform these spiritual duties in your home and in your church or synagogue. Some Scouts learn these most important duties in the schools they attend. On Mt. Sinai God gave to Moses the Ten Commandments. He laid down certain definite Laws for all. Not to steal, not to lie, not to abuse your body are some of these Laws. Keeping these Commandments is an important step towards being morally straight.
          A loving Scout son always asks His Heavenly Father’s pardon before he goes to bed at night for any offense he may have committed in thought, word or deed during the day. This is a Scout’s way of saying: “I am sorry, dear God, and with your help I will not offend you again.” Your own spiritual leader, minister, priest or rabbi will teach you how to know God better. ” Then on the next page it defines “Reverent” as “He is reverent toward God. He is faithful in his religious duties, and respects the convictions of others in matters of custom and religion.” This doesn’t say that he is accepting of those convictions or embracing in these other customs etc. It says that a scout respects your freedom to choose to live your life in the way you choose to do so. I don’t just read words; I meditate on them and try to understand what they really mean. If you don’t understand the BSA to be a Godly organization that chooses freely to not accept active homosexuals, atheists, or agnostics into the BSA then your either lying to yourself and completely misunderstand what the BSA stands for or your simply another aggressive militant homosexual or homosexual supporter trying to hijack and steal something that simply doesn’t belong to you. Tomorrow I’ll be proudly pinning the Eagle Rank Medal on my son. It’s a good organization; one that I’m very proud to defend. And I encourage my son to defend the BSA now that he has become a leader in our troop; and he does. When you attack me as a member of the BSA you’ve chosen to be aggressive toward me and the BSA and I’ll fight for what I believe in. What kind of an Eagle Scout would I be if I didn’t bravely stand up for what I know to be the truth given to us through God’s Word; the same Word of God my old scout manual taught me to mold my character to every time I stood and stand and recite the Scout Oath.. It’s an oath to live by; builds good strong American Men.. That’s why I’m still a leader in the BSA; I want to be part of keeping this country free and strong and it takes the next generation of American Citizens to defend this nation and all it stands for as they prepare to defend our Constitution 24/7/365 and every day beyond… You should respect the BSA’s free choice to operate my organization in the very best way possible to acheve our mission and fulfill our committment to keep our country the greatest country on Earth. My free choice and I’ll defend the BSA Godly character; I’m part of it…

        • your saying there are more scouts of the Islamic faith in the BSA than any other Godly faith?? I dont believe that. prove it!! I’m only concerned with the BSA because other countries are not controlled by the BSA and they can chiose to do whatever they want to do..

  4. delaying the decision is going to cuase confusion and more issues. the press is going to have a field day wth this..

    • Couldn’t disagree more. Delay give everyone time to think, process and listen. MUCH better than a knee-jerk reaction. Is this how you run your life and scouting unit? I’m glad they’re taking their time.
      And so what on what the press does?

      • Your patronizing mikemenn .

        • You’re right. I apologize for the “is this how you run your life and scouting unit” comment. I stand by the rest of it.

      • Mike, I respectfully disagree. The BSA has had years to consider their position, and the only thing that has changed is that some corporate gifts are being threatened, largely due to pressures from gay/lesbian influences. It is interesting to note that the most vocal voices for gay inclusion are also atheist and agnostic leaning people when you dig (certainly not all though). The BSA brought on the deadline by their announcement, and now is delaying likely still because of financial reasons. We are in the midst of FOS, through April, and the LDS,, and Methodist Catholic churches are not happy with a potential inclusion. Combined the three groups are a huge percentage of the BSA chartered organizations, and allowing gays to enter could well be the demise of the BSA.

  5. Leslie Sanborn // February 6, 2013 at 9:59 am //

    As a “representative of Scouting’s membership”, where/whom should I write to best be “engaged”?

    • Great question.

      • Jon Paulson // February 6, 2013 at 2:40 pm //

        You can send an email to nationalsupportcenter@scouting.org. That’s what I did, with the subject line “Opinion re: Policy Change”

  6. Charles Featherer // February 6, 2013 at 10:02 am //

    Delaying this decision is not morally right. The executive board is full of men afraid to take a stand against discrimination.

    • Taking time to think about something, listening, trying to understand, etc. isn’t “moral”? I’d like to hear your reasoning on this. I think these men … and women … are VERY brave and NOT afraid. Let’s support them, not belittle them.

      • Connie Knie // February 6, 2013 at 10:19 am //

        You know in retrospect you are correct and there are times when I should take a moment before hitting send. I guess my frustration is that all of this bally-hoo is taking away from the real program. I simply want a decision made so that everyone can stop talking about it and move on.
        If National really wants to listen they need to use a formal survey done by a professional, respected entity asking the right questions.

        Now as you don’t know me you don’t know that this is a very unusual comment for me to make as I don’t put alot of stock in surveys in general. (Don’t get me started on the Voice of the Scout). But at least this gives the process some kind of direction?

        • Good reply. And I agree. Would be nice to put this behind us. I guess it’s hard for us “in the trenches” folks since we have no real power to sway (other than voicing our opinions to the right people) and we’d like to just get on with raising great kids.

      • Markus Harrild // February 6, 2013 at 10:21 pm //

        Mike:

        I don’t know you, but you seem like a nice guy. You can’t be laid back and dispassionate about this question! Actually, I think the BSA National Execs and Council members are all deeply concerned and scared as all get out about this explosive issue.

        The antagonists have stretched and looked for weakness, continued to stretch and look for weakness, until this issue is stretched tighter than a gnat’s hind end stretched over a rain barrel.

        That being said, what is there to listen to, understand, and reason about with this issue? What it boils down to is whether or not A PRIVATE YOUTH ORGANIZATION, THAT HAS the RIGHT to DETERMINE MEMBERSHIP POLICIES, is going to cave to the gay, lesbian, transgendered and bisexual activist groups and their supporters. That is the issue!

        As I have stated before in this topic line, this is NOT about inclusiveness, discrimination, or sexual orientation. It is about the RIGHT that the BSA has to specify the BSA’s policies and ideals as a private youth organization and then practice said policies and ideals; no matter what antagonists say. Once again, that IS the BSA’s right as a PRIVATE youth organization.

        If individuals don’t agree with the BSA’s policies and membership requirements, then they have the right to disassociate themselves from the BSA and find a private youth organization that fulfills their ideals, or they have the right to establish the type of private youth organization they desire.

        I find it interesting that the gay, lesbian, transgendered, bisexual (GLTB) activists and their supporters have spent so much of their time and money to chip away at the ideals and membership policies of a positive PRIVATE youth organization, which does so much good within our communities, but the said GLTB activists and their supporters have not used their time and money to organize their own private GLTB youth organization, which is their right to do.

        I would think that after 20 years of litigious assaults upon the BSA (a private youth organization that has the right to determine membership policies for its members) by these activists that their money and time would be better spent on establishing such a needed organization.

        This aggressive onslaught by the GLTB activists and their supporters reeks of an ongoing activist agenda rather than true concern for the GLTB individuals who would like to be youth leaders. If the GLTB activists and their supporters were truly concerned, there would be private GLTB youth organization sponsored by them in every city in this nation. So, what’s their real motive?

    • ronwfox@aol.com // February 6, 2013 at 5:52 pm //

      The Executive Board is full of people – I imagine there’s women on it, too – who know that overturning a 103 year old policy that has this much contention and emotion concerning it is not something that should be done a) by them and b) with such short notice.

  7. Hallelujah, please take time to thoroughly look at the impacts of caving to PC nonsense. It has never been about allowing them to join us, it’s about destroying BSA. The left doesn’t want young men of moral character and what it takes to be a civic minded citizen at the local, state, or national level. They are already prepping for allowing atheist into BSA.

    • Love is all you need // February 6, 2013 at 11:40 am //

      Well everybody knows that that the ONLY people with moral character are Christians, while homosexuals and atheists are out to destroy all that is good in this world.

      • now that sounds sarcastic. Godly organization.. and you recognize the one true God as the truth. and He teaches us what a Godly life is all about; living in His will and homosexual behavior is sinful.. and I dont believe the Christian faith is saying the homosexual isnt wanted in the church etc. but their behavior IS biblically sinful.. and the scouts decided a long time ago to be a Godly organization.. and there is only one bible that contains the true word of God.. and these biblical truths never change.. and He
        calla us each to prayerfully mold our lives to His will.. everyone has their iwn barriers

        • Not all Scouts are Christians.

          Not all Christians agree with you.

        • Walla e,

          I strongly suspect you are a troll, and that we should just ignore you. If you aren’t a troll, then I’m deeply saddened that you are a BSA registered leader and an Eagle Scout.

          If you are truly an Eagle Scout and a leader, it’s time for you to start living up to the standards of the organization you represent.

          You are attempting to impose your agenda of religious zealotry on everyone in the BSA, and that is in direct contradiction of the Declaration of Religious Principles that you signed on your Adult Application:

          “The Boy Scouts of America maintains that no member can grow into the best kind of citizen without recognizing an obligation to God and, therefore, recognizes the religious element in the training of the member, but it is absolutely nonsectarian in its attitude toward that religious training. Its policy is that the home and organization or group with which the member is connected shall give definite attention to religious life. Only persons willing to subscribe to these precepts from the Declaration of Religious Principle and to the Bylaws of the Boy Scouts of America shall be entitled to certificates of leadership.”

          Let’s look further, shall we?

          - The Boy Scouts of America does not define what constitutes belief in God or the practice of religion.
          - The Boy Scouts of America does not require membership in a religious organization or association for enrollment in the movement but does prefer, and strongly encourages, member-ship and participation in the religious programs and activities of a church, synagogue, or other religious association. If a Scout does not belong to a religious organization or association, then his parent(s) or guardian(s) will be considered to be responsible for his religious development.
          - The Boy Scouts of America respects the convictions of those who exercise their constitutional freedom to practice religion as individuals without formal membership in organized religious organizations. In a few cases, there are those who, by conviction, do not feel it necessary to formally belong to an organized form of religion and seek to practice religion in accordance with their own personal convictions. Religious organizations have commended the Boy Scouts of America for encouraging youth to participate in organized religious activities. However, these same organizations reject any form of compulsion to enforce conformity to established religious practices.
          - If a boy says he is a member of a religious body, the standards by which he should be evaluated are those of that group. This is why the application for the Eagle Scout Award requests a reference from his religious leader to indicate whether he has lived up to their expectations. Throughout life, Scouts are associated with people of different faiths. Scouting believes in religious freedom, respecting others whose religion may differ from theirs, and in the right of all to worship God in their own way.

          (This material was sourced from meritbadge.org … I happen to have that site bookmarked).

  8. braddelaney // February 6, 2013 at 10:05 am //

    So it looks like in May they’ll have to either decide to join the 21st century or start preparing to enter the history books.

    • There is no evidence that allowing openly gay individuals is a savior to the program. The Girl Scouts, Exploring, Campfire, Boy & Girls club, membership drops even though they have openly gay members.

      There may be some more money nationally, but our whole district which heavily relies on LDS and Catholic church resources will likely fail if they pull out. I haven’t talked to Council but they have been talking of merging with another council long before this. Oddly enough overall Council membership has been growing.

      • Both the LDS church and the Catholic church embrace celibate gay members. Why would they want the BSA to reject these people as members?

    • Markus Harrild // February 6, 2013 at 10:30 pm //

      Brad:
      Your a kinsman, and I can’t believe you made that comment. Joining in with the 21st century doesn’t mean its right or moral!

      This is an issue about the RIGHT of a private youth organization to determine it’s ideals and membership policies. Nothing to do with inclusion, discrimination, or sexual orientation.

      Anyone who feels they need to catch up with the moral decay of the 21st century is sadly mistaken and doesn’t understand what the Boy Scout Oath is about.

  9. Bev Armstrong // February 6, 2013 at 10:09 am //

    Ruling that each charter sponsor can decide for themselves opens individual sponsors up to litigation if not protected by the national policy. Also, although each charter partner had the right to choose, it would effect district, council and national events where groups are brought together. I understand that many of your religious based charter partners are opposed to this change, making up half or nearly half of all membership. I understand that there might be some corporate sponsership that is threatening to withdraw if you don’t make the change. When United Way pulled out their support years ago everyone was so worried about the financial problem it would be, but others who supported BSA stepped up. Please think carefully and prayerfully about this decision.

    • Connie Knie // February 6, 2013 at 11:24 am //

      As far as litigation. I submit that most COs, long before the SCOTUS decision, already had a policy in place. And the ban in 2000 actually made alot of groups that were already inclusive restrict their membership against their will.
      The same goes for groups who were already restricted. The ban simply made it easier.

      Either way, if the COs weren’t being sued then, why would they be sued now? Nothing has really changed as far as their membership policies.

      My concern, as an ADC is the PTAs and what kind (if any) of issues will this raise? I mean these groups are simply parents who volunteer at the schools and may just not want to be involved in the drama. So they will just withdraw the charters OR the other scenerio is a parent will use their position in the PTA to push a personal agenda also resulting in the withdrawl of the charter.

      Either way………..drama is coming. I just wish a decision would come either way so we can get on with it and get it over.

    • You are correct. If national take a up to units decission that will allow the ACLU to attack each council, district or unit. That will make it easy for them to win. They have the bucks and the smaller the group they attack the easier the win. Once they get a win all will fall!

      • Gary Wilson // February 6, 2013 at 1:27 pm //

        Chartered units already have the right to say who is permitted in their units in may other realms. For example, a unit chartered to a church currently may elect to only have members and leaders who are members of that parish.

        When that occurs, it is the district’s responsibility to make sure that other units are available to others. This doesn’t result in lawsuits, and a church can’t be sued by anyone over it’s religious beliefs, even it it involves homosexuality. The Dale Decision also still says that BSA has the right to it’s own membership standards concerning anything.

        So the rumor that the proposed change will result in lawsuits is a myth and past experience bears that out.

        • Carrie Westfall // February 6, 2013 at 3:00 pm //

          Since when has any decision ever resulted in stopping the ACLU???? They will still attack… thats what they do… and they will keep attacking until a CO either gives in or pulls their charters…. it is that simple… The reality of the situation is that nobody is going to win….

      • Even the ACLU can’t defeat a decision made by the US Supreme Court which protects the BSA’s right to freely operate their organization anyway they legally see fit to do.. A right protected under the US Constitution and protected daily by all invaders who choose to try to take Constitutional rights away including the ACLU, and other anti freedom groups.. Our military troops defend these rights every moment of every day, 365 days a year and forever as long as there is a United States of America…

  10. CubmasterJoe // February 6, 2013 at 10:09 am //

    A majority of Americans, over 56%, consider homosexuality to be “morally acceptable,” while only 39% view it as “morally wrong.”

    Now this is the Boy Scouts OF AMERICA… shouldn’t the organization reflect the views and values of the country it is serving?

    The BSA established it’s current interpretation of the Scout Oath and Law to defend the exclusion of homosexuals in the case of “BSA v. Dale” (2000). It was developed with a 1990′s outlook. But a lot has changed since then. In 2000, public acceptance of homosexual behavior was under 35%. The overall public understanding of homosexuality was misguided. We, as a nation, were ignorant. But it’s 2013 things change.

    The BSA needs to get with the times and adapt to the nation it’s serving or else I agree that they’ll soon be only found in the history books.

    (Data source: http://www.gallup.com/poll/147785/Support-Legal-Gay-Relations-Hits-New-High.aspx)

    • Another Gallup poll taken in late November 2012 (2 months ago) asked questions on a variety of homosexual rights. All the questions except for one showed a majority of respondents in favor of homosexual rights. A specific question asked if BSA should allow homosexual leaders. A majority said no. Yes 42% (should allow homosexual leaders), No 52% (should not). I believe the margin of error was plus/minus 4%

    • I respectfully disagree. You can find statistics that will reflect the opposite. The BSA should reflect the views and values of those participating, registered members, and only participating registered members. They have a stake in the program. They are vested in its survival. Outside opinions are fine but not at the expense of those who serve and build it everyday. National seems to have forgotten that as evidenced by their decision today. Those of us in the program need to make double sure they never forget it again.

      • Currently registered members aren’t the only stakeholders affected by this discussion… what about all the people who want to join but can’t because of the current policy? Don’t they get a voice? What about former members who left in protest because of the policy? If only people already in Scout can have a voice, you’ll get a very skewed view on the issue.

        • Respectfully I would say no they do not not until they are members.you will find that almost every single private volunteer organization operates in a similar manner. Membership decisions are left to the members. The BSA is in this situation because they listed to those with no vested interest in the program.

    • No one asked me. Everyone I know thinks homosexuality is morally wrong. Polls are taken by groups that ask questions that get answers they want to promote their views. National needs to to set up a website to allow leaders and parents for thier oppinions.

    • The BSA should stand true to their mission of standing with an oath of moral integrity and if the organization fails a new organization will rise up because the mission is a true mission… Evangelical Churches are booming because people are fleeing the Presbyterian (USA), Lutheran and Episcopalean denominations.. Their denominations will in time go bankrupt as people come to realized that their denominations have been taken over by militant homosexual aggressors… God has His ways of keeping us all turning to Him.. I wouldn’t join those denominations and wait for those ways to come…

    • God has ruled homosexuality to be an abomination to His creation.. It doesn’t matter if 99.999% of his creation believes it or not.. His truths don’t change just because we say or think they do.. Truths never change… His Word never changes..Also 56% of the population do not believe homosexuality is morally acceptable.. you should substantiate your lies with documentation.. That is a lie and you know its a lie…

  11. David Hanks // February 6, 2013 at 10:10 am //

    Scouting is a safe haven for our kids. I would like for it to remain so. Scouting has morals as well as merits.

    • Yes, and I would like my kids to learn the morals and values of respect, tolerance, compassion, understanding, and diversity. Shunning people because of who they are isn’t very Scout-like.

      • You don’t understand the true mission of the BSA… maybe homosexuals should practice tolerance, respect, compassion, understanding, and allow the BSA to run their private organization in the manner they choose to run it in order to achieve the mission of the organization which is to nurture boys to grow to become young men of Godly moral character.. You should find another organization if you don’t think the BSA is a good fit for your children. It isn’t for every boy and there is no requirement that your son participate in the organization.. But if it is an organization you want your boy to be involved in because of the Biblical Principles they follow then you should encourage your son to participate in the program… or maybe it would be best if you simply created your own youth organization with your own ideals being the template to build your program around… this is the United States of America and your certainly free to do that.. The US Constitution and the US Supreme Court give you the freedom to do the exact same thing the Boy Scouts of America have done… good luck….

        • Wallace, with all due respect, the BSA is not a Christian organization. There are Scouts for whom Biblical Principles are not part of their religious beliefs. Expecting the BSA’s policies to strictly follow the beliefs of any one religion is misguided.

      • Morals and values…..and where does homosexualality fit in that? If you are or were a scout or leader this is the code we strive for. Also from one who was abused from a leader as a child I can’t and won’t let any boy be a possible target. And I’ll quote the White House ” If it saves just one child, then its worth it.”

        • Abuse is wrong. There is no place for it in scouting.
          No one here, on either side of the issue, wants children to be abused.

          Those for removing the ban believe there are good men and women, who are gay/lesbian, who are fully capable of working with kids without abusing them, and that the BSA will benefit from their involvement..

        • I’m sorry for what happened to you, john, but excluding homosexuals from scouting won’t prevent abuse. (As it clearly did not in your case). I agree, abuse is wrong. We therefore don’t allow abusers in.

  12. Jane Marie // February 6, 2013 at 10:11 am //

    The Mormon Church allows gay members in their church… but they won’t let them in Scouts? Huh? I’m confused. Let’s just stop the discrimination!

    • http://www.mormonsandgays.org/

      Please go here for an answer to your question. Always better to get the info from the horses mouth so to speak.

    • When you stand up for a biblical principle I guess your in good company and if you want to call that discrimanation then I guess your saying that God discriminates too… He wrote the book and He’s the one who said homosexuality is an abomination against His creation.. If you don’t believe in God then your not welcome to join the Boy Scouts of America.. It’s ok that the BSA has standards of morality consistent with Biblical Principles.. The US Supreme Court even said it was OK for the Scouts to be a Godly organization and discriminate based on Biblical Principles… Sinful Behavior is actually immoral behavior… like I said; if your not a believer in God then join another organization… I’m in the BSA because I’m a believer in God and try to mold my behavior to His principles given to us by Him through His Holy Word.. its my life choice; freely made… Maybe the Mormon’s should start their own youth organization based on their principles for living… or is it just easier to hijack the BSA and try to bring some sort of behavior justification to homosexual sinfullness by affilitating with a solid traditional organization like the BSA..

      • Wallace I liked your comment until you spoke about the LDS on Scouting and Gays. Apparently you don’t know about LDS, they tolerate people that have same sex attraction but using Gods will they aren’t suppose to act on that attraction. It’s an old Christian belief where some Christian Churches have gotten away from because they think that they would lose members if they allow same sex attraction. LDS troop are led by people of high morals, not people of no values.

        • http://www.mormonsandgays.org/

          Please go to this website for the LDS Churches position on homosexuality as a good resource in your intellectual journey.

        • Does the LDS follow the King James Version of the Holy Bible.. if not then we do disagree.. That’s the version of God’s Word I follow… God considers homosexuality sinful behavior and an abomination against His creation… If you’ve been baptized then you’ve accepted the Holy Spirit into His creation; your body… But I’m not casting any stones at anyone; I’m not the judge… and when facing judgement by the mob Jesus convinced the mob to disperse and told the sinner to go on in her life.. but he didn’t tell her to go on in her life and continue sinning… He told her to go on in her life and to sin no more.. There is a far greater love than fulfillment of a sexual desire.. It doesn’t matter what sexual orientation, race, gender, or any other nature you are; He calls us to be in a close relationship with Him and that can’t be achieved through living a life in sinful disobedience… That’s why I choose to accept His blood for my forgiveness… we all have sinful behaviors but I’m not trying to change sinful behaviors into being morally acceptable behavior just because were alive today (this “modern” day).. Scouts don’t want homosexuals to be leaders or members; why would they want to be?? How will they stand up for an oath that calls them to be morally straight.. but they can choose to aspire to a greater love and choose to be morally straight not engaging in sinful behavior… then why would they even reveal their struggle; we all have our crosses to bare… I don’t expect anyone to change His Word to eliminate my sins and to free me to live an immoral life; I’d always know the truth; the Holy Spirit would constantly haunt me with it until I repented.. I’m thankful for that… My desire is Eternal Life; the one Jesus promised to me…

      • Wallace – why do you hold the sin, as you see it, of homosexuality so far above similar sins? Adultery, for example, is not Biblical, yet the BSA does not take a stand on it. Similarly, sex before marriage is sinful, yet the BSA does not ban Scouts who sin in this way. Why the different rule for homosexuality? Are we not all sinners?

  13. Mary Ann Hicks // February 6, 2013 at 10:11 am //

    I feel we should leave our policy the way it is..we do not need gays or lesbians in our organizations..Baden Powell would be very disappointed in us if we would allow this influence amongst out boys

    • How do you know how Baden-Powell would feel in 2013 regarding this issue?

    • BP would be disappointed about a great deal of things in Scouting today.

      • I’m sure he’d be disappointed in discrimination and exclusion.

        • Markus Harrild // February 6, 2013 at 1:53 pm //

          That is NOT the issue. It is the right of a private youth organization to determine its own ideals and vision. It is the right of choice and the Scouting ideal of being “morally straight,” as defined by Judeo-Christian and other religious faiths, that is at the heart of this issue.

          The BSA has a right to espouse those beliefs, just as a gay, lesbian, transgendered, or bisexual (GLTB) has a right to espouse their beliefs. The problem has been that the activist GLTB agenda has been to force their beliefs upon the BSA. It has nothing to do with being “socially enlightened” or inclusive, but everything to do with forcing a private organization to follow the GLTB beliefs.

        • If you read some of his books, B P actively took part in discrimination and exclusion on a daily basis. Racial purity is also one of the recurring themes of his different books. The Siege of Mafeking which was one of the catalysts for by scouting movement was part of a “white man’s war”.
          Off the top of my head almost all of his military based books are pretty exclusionary if not racist.

          As for the homosexual. B P writes of self control in all things sexual and how biological functions should be addressed only with one’s wife. In Rovering to Success Chapter 3 he writes of sexual matters with significant depth.

        • ust because we legally can exclude gays doesn’t mean we should.

        • Markus Harrild, the BSA is not considering a policy on transgendered members, so the GBLT abbreviation does not really apply here.

    • Would you seriously allow your 11 year old son to go on a campout with two homosexual lovers who chose to become leaders of a boy scout troop?? I wouldn’t.. that’s what’s going to happen if you allow homosexuals to be leaders in the BSA.. Different for a baseball team playing one two hour game and as a parent your right there for the whole game… How will that headline look in the newspaper?? Think the media isn’t having a field day trying to attack and discredit all the good works that have taken place in the BSA over the years with the tragic events that at times happen in every organization… It would be the beginning of the end of an amazing American institution….

      • Would I seriously allow your 11 year old son to go on a campout with two homosexual lovers who chose to become leaders of a boy scout troop? Yes, I would. I currently let him spend extended time alone with his two guy aunts.

        • * whoops, I meant MY son. I would let my son go camping with 2 homosexual leaders… he already has gone camping with my sister and her wife outside of Scouting.

      • >>>Would you seriously allow your 11 year old son to go on a campout with two homosexual lovers who chose to become leaders of a boy scout troop??

        How would that be any different than going with a heterosexual married couple? If I felt uncomfortable with any leader, for any reason, I’d make sure my husband or a trusted friend went along on the trip, or my boy wouldn’t go. It’s my job as a parent to make these calls on an individual basis. Blanket bans may give the illusion of protection, but in fact they aren’t particularly helpful.

        • then you definitely dont understand what scouting is all about.. its about letting your son go with a morally straight trustworthy group if men to learn moral lessons, outdoor skills, citiczenship, friendships; its really a guy thing; you really wont understand.. call me whatever; if you just said what you said you really have no idea what the Boy Scouts of America is all about!!

        • Walla e -

          I completely agree that part of scouting is learning outdoor skills, moral lessons, leadership, and citizenship, making good friends along the way. My husband and I value all that our son has learned through scouting, and we are proud of the young man our scout has become.

          That said, I don’t blindly trust a scoutmaster any more than I blindly trust a teacher or a priest. The days when those in such professions could be assumed to be uniformly pure and good are over; in fact we have learned that it was never true. If I am uncomfortable with someone in such a position being around my child, I will exercise caution; I hope all parents do the same. This doesn’t mean I don’t know what scouting is all about; it just means I am a cautious mom – that’s my job. Over time, individuals in the BSA have earned my trust, and my son has spent many years on staff at summer camp.

          Where you and I differ is that I think that gay and lesbian youth can also benefit from what scouting has to offer, and that they do not pose any more of a risk, as a group, than heterosexual scouts. (In fact, there are already gay and lesbian scouts in troops who practice a de facto “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy; these scouts are good kids, who have a lot to offer scouting.) In addition, we differ in our religious beliefs as to whether it is possible for someone with same-sex attraction to live a moral life, and whether the BSA should be standing in judgement of this or whether it should be left between the Scout, his CO’s leadership (as opposed to National), and his God, much as the BSA currently treats issues of sexual purity and morality .for heterosexual scouts.

        • What makes you think anyone has any right to attack the BSA and their membership policies? their a private AMERICAN organizatiin free to choose the way they want to run their organization. if theybwere exclusively white and promoted an agenda toward working to promote white people in our American society what would people and the media say; what do people say about the NAACP now.. shouldn’t they be under attack for not including everyone in their mission and forced to promote whites, yellow, blacks, reds, homosexuals etc.. NO.. its their freedom to choose to operate their organization anyway they choose.. If the BSA say we’ve decided to be a Christian organization then their a Christian organization and your being intolerant and disrespectful of their American right to freely run their organization anyway they choose.. that’s the real issue.. it doesn’t belong to everyone.. some people are excluded because their principles for living a moral life dont align with the moral standards the BSA has chosen freely to set.. I think people that don’t like the way the NSA is run should walk away and leave the BSA alone.. the members who have chosen to spend their lives complying with the program deserve the same respect that members of the NAACP get. the majority of people involved in the BSA are Christians.. thats a simple fact; do you dispute that.. I dont belive the BSA has any such thing as a dont ask dont tell policy; never in my life ever heard of such a thinv in the BSA; your invention??? the BSA doesn’t recognize different God’s; is that what your implying? there is only one God and there is only one written Word where He has revealed Himself to us about His Way… if you join the BSA accept that and if you diagree then why would you join.. I’m not a member of the KKK because I choose not to agree with their ideals.. do I have a right to change what they freely choose to be? No.. I don’t even pay them any attention..

      • Love is all you need // February 10, 2013 at 6:19 pm //

        Explain to me the difference between leaders that are two homosexual lovers as opposed to two heterosexual lovers. Your child wouldn’t be a part of either loving relationship, so I don’t comprehend your phobia.

        • if i have to explain this to you then i’m probably waisting my time but this is hust a fact of the matter whether you want to accept it or not.. a heterosexual couple don’t lead boy scout troops; at least they shouldn’t. they shouldn’t be out together on campouts with the boys.. if you allow two male homosexuals ti become leaders of troops some are going to be bad and think displaying affection to eachother around the boys would be good to teach the byos that homosexual live is normal and acceptable.. most of; nearly all, the boys and other adult leaders will be repulsed; fact of nature that isn’t changing no matter how much you try to wish it away.. now the BSA has all kinds of more problems to deal with.. you cant see that writing on the wall? if you say no then your either blind or simply lying to me.. your not going to change the mind of a heterosexual man or boy on the way they feel; YOU ARENT going ti desensetize them and their parents are pulling them out of the troop anyway.. if you want homosexual youth led organizations then for your own… Yes! that’s really the answer if you feel so strongly about this.. why terrorize and hijack the BSA?? cause its a social agenda!!!the homisexual l

        • Why shouldn’t a heterosexual couple lead a boy scout troop? There is no policy disallowing this. In fact, in the YPT guidelines, Scouters who are married to each other are permitted to share a tent. I know many married leaders that attend camping events together.

        • women shouldn’t be on overnight campouts with the adult male leaders and with the boys.. that’s not what the Boy Scouts should be all about.. its extremely akward for the boys; ever ask them?? I have.. just not what scouting is about.. if you don’t understand then go back and read what Baden Powell envisioned for the scouts and prayerfully try to understand it.. if you can’t understand then I doubt you’ll accept any message I have to share.. the Boy Scouts of America shouldn’t have women on campouts with the boys..

        • Amen!
          That is why it is called “Boy Scouts”.
          That is why they have “Girfs Scouts”

        • Walla e, you’re proposing a new ban? I, for one, go on campouts with boys all the time. If I didn’t, our troop wouldn’t have two deep leadership. It’s that way for many troops. They aren’t all so fortunate as to have enough men step forward to lead.

        • Not by choice, we currently have more female committee members than men. We do end up with females on camp-outs to ensure 2-deep leadership. Luckily at least 1 is firm in discipline while others less so (more nurturers). Some come through the ranks with cord still attached too. Most know it and cutting the cord is a process for both son and mother. We try to help with that.

          I am aware that it is common practice for single parents to seek out troops so their sons can be exposed to male influence. My goal is to minimize the number of females involved in the troop not by losing these women but hopefully expanding the male influence/numbers within the troop.

          I respect what my female members bring to the troop but recognize the need to maintain a masculine experience.

        • homosexuality is repulsive behavior not only to adult heterosexuals but to heterosexual youth too. isn’t the truth allowed into the discussion.. there will be homosexual leaders who would feel some sort of duty to try to normalize their abnormal behavior by exhibiting intimacy withtheir homosexual bf during campouts etc.; not hard to see into that crystal ball; wouldn’t be much of a scout if you weren’t prepared to see that coming if the BSA changes their policy.. its not a phobia; no fear involved.. its a feeling of repulsion.. just natural feelings a heterosexual would have seeing homosexual behavior.. the bible says God sees homosexuality as an abomination; He’s not afraid of it either, just finds that sinful behavior ti be repulsive too.. lot of catch words out there that aggressive militant homosexuals like to call people ti try to demonize their natural feelings toward homosexuality.. doesn’t change the truth that heterosexual adults and children feel repulsed by the exhibition of homosexual intimacy.. are you afraid of just allowing people to be honest about how they feel about homosexual behavior.. I hope you understand there are homosexuals out there with aggressive sociaal agendas thinking their going to terrorize or desensitize people away from their human nature??? its ridiculous idea; this isn’t racism which is dying.. thia is perverted abnormal sexual behavior which will forever be repulsive to heterosexual people… no place in a scout troop for homosexual male lovers to be in a leadership position pushing this kind of social agenda. truths

        • Honestly, Mike, I agree with you. One of the things I value in the program is the male role models that my son encounters in scouting. I am a single mother as well. When my son joined as a tiger, he did so because he wanted to shoot bb guns. I was asked to be a leader because no one else would do it. I was his webelos den leader as well. (We left the program during wolf and bear years because of lack of leadership in the pack). When we came back when he was in the 4th grade, I really wanted someone else to be the den leader. I was working 50 to 60 hours a week and trying to work on my masters degree. I did it because there were no other options. By the time my son crossed over into his troop, I could not imagine not being part of it. I was hooked. I’ve met some of my best friends in scouting, both males and females. I have had unforgettable experiences with my son. I do know, however, that there are plenty of things I can’t teach him. (Or the other boys). I don’t try to take the place of the men. I see myself as present in a support role. I am much better at maintaining the discipline with the other boys. I do have a bit of a nurturing side, and some of my male friends know when to tell me to tone it down. In the time we have spent in scouting, though, we have become a scouting family. I foresee myself volunteering with this organization long after my son ages out. At the age of 14, he is looking forward to the day that he will share scouting with a son of his own.

          Incidentally, my son also wants the current policy excluding gay members changed. When I told him they were considering it, he said “it’s about time”

        • Too bad beth. if you truly respected what scouting is all about you’d find adult male role models for the boys to camp with. they might say their ok with you being there but most would only just be being polite.. i would instinctively feel very out of place going camping with the girl scouts in a similar fashion. wrongful. it just is wehether you want to accept that truth or not.

        • I would find adult male role models for the boys to camp with? There are adult male role models for the boys to camp with. Sometimes, if I don’t go, there won’t be two of them, however. Why am I in boy scouts rather than girl scouts? Because I’ve been blessed with a son rather than a daughter. I’m involved in it specifically to spend time with my son doing something we both enjoy. As an aside, I help to put on a quality program not only for the boys in my son’s troop, but for the cub scout pack he was a member of (which I still volunteer for), the district and the council. I’m proud of the work I do with the BSA. Trust me, as a single mom, I know my son needs strong male role models, which is another reason why I value the program, because he has plenty of role models from which to choose.

        • Mike – You sound like a wise leader. The BSA and the Scouts in your troop, are lucky to have you.

  14. Well, Praise teh Lord. The People won round one. Now it is up to the Council and those who care that the Scouts stay “Morally Straight” must Stand Firm and stay on the offense. The enemies are not going to and we have won a battle the War is still on and at risk. Here is a perfect example of why this issue is so severe and puts our young at risk and look at some of the comments by the professional radical responders. You must get involved and stay involved and let your voices be heard loud, often and clear.
    Here is a letter I sent to the Board yesterday and News article posted yesterday also.

    2.5.2013
    To Wayne Brock
    Boy Scouts of America Board of Directors
    I am a former Scout
    Here is a classic prime example of what most are saying to you.
    WND EXCLUSIVE
    BOY SCOUT LEADER CHARGED WITH SODOMIZING SCOUT
    Organization faces vote on policy for homosexuals
    Published: February 5, 2013 2 hours ago

    A former Boy Scout leader has been charged with sodomizing a boy in his troop who was under the age of 13.
    News of the indictment Monday by a grand jury in Charlottesville, Va., comes as the Boy Scouts of America faces a vote tomorrow by its executive board that could reverse the iconic organization’s century-old policy of barring homosexuals from its ranks.
    David Watkins, 49, was arrested Nov. 28 in Charlottesville, Va., where he works as CEO of Watkins Computer Services. Watkins founded Keswick Troop 1028 in 2002 and was its scoutmaster until 2008.
    The abuse took place in 2005, according to court documents, but the victim, now an adult, waited several years before coming forward, reported WHSV-TV in Harrisonburg, Va.
    #########
    This is what happens when an organization compromises its core values for the sake of “cash”.

    The three major promises of the Scout Oath are:
    Duty to God and country,
    Duty to other people, and
    Duty to self (to keep oneself morally straight)
    “Be morally straight. To be a person of strong character, your relationships with others should be honest and open. You should respect and defend the rights of all people. Be clean in your speech and actions, and remain faithful in your religious beliefs. The values you practice as a Scout will help you shape a life of virtue and self-reliance.”
    God will hold you accountable for these actions.
    Taylor E. Hoynes, Jr.

    • I don’t see how this story applies to the policy. It sounds like a Youth Protection policy issue. Was this so-called leader a confirmed homosexual? Probably not. The policy obviously didn’t keep him out.

      • I’m with Karen. Sounds like a Youth Protection policy was clearly being ignored for a long time. These men don’t just decide to sodomize a child on day 1. It is after a long ‘trusting’ relationship they build with a child. ….most children who are sexually abused are done so by a member of their family or close family friend. And Gay DOES NOT EQUAL Pedophile. Most pedophiles live ‘straight’ lives and would fall right through the cracks on any ‘anti-gay’ policy.

      • We are back to playing semantics and word games.
        So, let’s get down the nitty gritty; the bottom line. Now we have the true side of those who are pro homosexuals, LBGT, GLAAD, ACLU and all the others. The bottom line: MORALITY.
        I have posted fact based sites for anyone to check it out at the end here.
        But, the radicals are not interested in facts, this is an AGENDA and they are committed to CHANGE. That is to change America from “One Nation Under God” To “One Nation Under Government” and the only way to do that is to secularize America which is what they have been and are doing constantly; THEY ARE COMMITTED AND THEY ARE RADICALS.

        Have you ever heard of Saul Alinsky’s book Rules for Radicals?
        Alinsky codified and wrote a clear set of rules for community organizing. His rules for radicals are now used as key tactics to learn in the training of new community organizers. (Ends Justify any Means) of which President Obama used during his career of a community organizer in Chicago as well as Hillary Clinton.
        “The enemy properly goaded and guided in his reaction will be your major strength.”
        I encourage all America ns to read it and Rules for Revolution and comments by David Horowitz (Freedom Center).

        Alinsky codified and wrote a clear set of rules for community organizing. His rules for radicals are now used as key tactics to learn in the training of new community organizers. (Ends Justify any Means)
        “The enemy properly goaded and guided in his reaction will be your major strength.”

        So, here are some of the comments from some of them:

        “Morally straight” and “clean” are outdated and wrong?

        I (like many other Scouters) think that someone can be a homosexual and still be “morally straight” and “clean.” I don’t see homosexuality as immoral and I don’t see how one’s sexual orientation conflicts with the ideals of Scouting”

        “Well, there are also millions of us in the Scouting movement that have invested time and money and want our sons to have a program that teaches and instills the proper values of tolerance, acceptance, and understanding. As such, we feel that excluding someone based on their sexual orientation is wrong and in conflict with the aims of the Scouting program.”
        [That’s interesting in that there are only 909,576 boys ages 11 to 17 in Boy Scouting and Varsity Scouting (BSA 2011 Report to the Nation) 2.7 million total in all scouting e.g. Cub Scouts etc]

        “Sorry, but as the parent of a Scout, I think the BSA’s interpretation of the terms ‘morally straight’” and “clean’ is outdated and wrong. I hope the BSA revises their view and their policy.”

        “It’s not about ‘sex’.”

        THEN WHAT DOES THE WORD “HOMOSEXUAL” MEAN? the dictionary and medical dictionary says it means “SODOMY” and that is unnatural sex between men and men or boys and boys or men and boys and that Lesbeins (female) have sex with other women and girls. Those who have sex either way are Bi-Sexual.
        HOMOSEXUALITY IS A BEHAVIORAL CHOICE; NO ONE IS BORN WITH ANY GENE THAT MAKES THEM THAT WAY. The atheist Richard Dawkins speculates that a “gay gene” causes homosexuality, but science has not discovered such a gene.
        The increasing claims of being “born that way” parallels the rising political activism of homosexual organizations, who politicize the issue of homosexual origins. In the 1970s, approximately ten percent of homosexuals claimed to be “born homosexual” according to a large scale survey.

        Moral Relativism
        You must teach your children to discern “good” from “evil”.
        Research shows that our young people by the age of 13 have formed their moral and spiritual foundations.
        “America is like a healthy body and its resistance is threefold: its patriotism, its morality and its spiritual life. If we can undermine these three areas, America will collapse from within.”
        Josef Stalin (1879-1953) Communist leader of the USSR”

        Character matters;

        Morality
        Thesaurus: Ethics Morals Principles Goodness Decency Honesty Integrity Virtue Godliness Uprightness, Rectitude, Morality Righteousness, Honor, Truthfulness, Reliability.

        Webster’s 1828 American Dictionary
        MORAL’ITY, n. The doctrine or system of moral duties, or the duties of men in their social character; ethics.
        The system of morality to be gathered from the writings of ancient sages, falls very short of that delivered in the gospel.
        1. The practice of the moral duties; virtue. We often admire the politeness of men whose morality we question.
        2. The quality of an action which renders it good; the conformity of an act to the divine law, or to the principles of rectitude

        IMMORALITY, n. Any act or practice which contravenes the divine commands or the social duties. Injustice, dishonesty, fraud, slander, profaneness, gaming, intemperance, lewdness, are immoralities. All crimes are immoralities; but crime expresses more than immorality.

        So parents, do you want to take the risk of corrupting your child for the rest of his life by taking the chance of our sons in the same tent with someone that might turn him to homosexuality or worse an adult leader coming into his tent and committing SODOMY.

        PLEASE NOTE: THERE ARE THOUSANDS OF HOMOSEXUALS AND LESBIANS WHO HAVE SUCCESSFULLY COME OUT AND LEAD A NORMAL HERTOSEXUAL LIFE. MANY AFTER AGE 25 GROW OUT OF IT.

        GO THE SITES HERE AND FIND THE TRUTH.
        Fact Sheet:
        http://factsaboutyouth.com/posts/male-homosexual-behavior/
        Letter:
        http://factsaboutyouth.com/wp-content/uploads/Superintendent-LetterC_3.311.pdf

        Founding President John Adams said many years ago,
        “Their reason becomes at last an eloquent advocate on the side
        of their passions …
        bring[ing] themselves to believe that black is white, that vice is
        virtue, that folly is wisdom and eternity a moment. …”
        President John Adams

        Pluralism
        Existence of different groups within society; the existence of groups with different ethnic, religious, or political backgrounds within one society. Pluralism in itself is not bad, but it has been taken to the extreme which has led to relativistic pluralism. Relativism says there is no truth and all world views, ideologies and faith are all equally true. This is the same thing as “democracy” which is majority, mob, rule and considered to be despotism which is tyranny.

        ############

    • He was a divorced man – which would put him on the hetrosexual team. The policy in question regarding gays would have no bearing on this alleged pedophile.

      His wife brought up his behavior in their divorce proceedings according to news reports. She made no allegations of homosexuality.

    • Albert J Weiscraft III // February 6, 2013 at 3:15 pm //

      This is pediphelia NOT homosexuality. Saying that just because someone is attracted to the male gender makes then want to molest boys is wrong. If so, it we must exclude women from scouting (unless the only women we are allowing in are lesbians). Pediphiles, often, don’t care about the gender of the victum, just that they are young.
      The BSA is not planning on allowing pediphiles in the organization. Plus follow YPT and this is not an issue

    • Being charged with a crime and being convicted are two different things… Until this man is convicted in the court of law he’s innocent.. I don’t think Mr. Watkins should be persecuted until he has his day in court.. If Mr. Watkins has been practicing two deep leadership then he has nothing to worry about since the BSA policy is that a leader should always be with another leader when being with a youth… If your an adult leader you have to be careful about not being with a youth alone.. I think this is all a pity as when I grew up in scouting I only remember scoutmasters as being the best men I’d ever met in my life.. I still believe in the character of scoutmasters and thank them for their dedicated service.. It takes a lot of time and commitment to be a good scoutmaster..

  15. This is truly a sad day for a once proud organization that used to stand against the storm. There was a time when doing right was more important than money or media perception. The Executive Board has treated their CO’s and members with complete disdain and contempt. There was no dialog with the “Scouting Family” only with the choice few who will fall in lockstep and not make waves. Councils were completely blindsided. So the original questions still linger in oblivion. Who rewrites the Scout Oath and Scout Law to apply equally across the board should the policy change? How doe a potential policy unite Scouting instead of dividing it into red.blue, have/have not, inclusive/exclusive, etc. ? A change in policy would invalidate the protections afforded under the 2000 SCOTUS ruling so what legal protections will National provide CO’s, Councils, Districts, and Scouters from the flurry of lawsuits that will be filed? Who are these 1400 board members we are supposed to interacting with? Will a direct survey of active registered adult scouters take place?

    • Connie Knie // February 6, 2013 at 10:29 am //

      Andrew, National will provide the same legal protections against law suits they do now no matter the ruling. There have always been lawsuits brought against Scouting for lots of reasons other than this issue.
      There is wording in the charter agreements with National regarding their protection of units against law suits.
      So what protection that is already there will still be there no matter what.

      • Legal experts disagree on this and that is why it is an issue now. There will be lawsuits filed and it will be incumbent on the CO’s to expend precious resources to defend themselves. Legal experts disagree on Nationals obligations. Many believe that National will have no obligation to defend the CO’s. Many do not have those resources to spend.

      • http://blog.libertyinstitute.org/2013/02/the-boy-scouts-threat-to-religious.html

        Interesting reading from another voice in this discussion.

        • Connie Knie // February 6, 2013 at 4:59 pm //

          Yep I just read it. They are talking worst case scenerios for sure. We can’t know what is going to happen but I do know that for years the BSA has been under attack for one reason or another. Now the COs that decide ON THEIR OWN to uphold their membership restrictions could possibly face law suits but again I stand by the theory that these guidelines that they decide to uphold are ones that they already have in place and if they are not getting sued now what is going to change?

        • Respectfully I disagree. Having personal experience with the legal brigade of the LGBT Community there will be lawsuits filed. Guilt or innocence does not matter. Every victory no matter how small becomes a legal precedent for the next legal battle. I have witnessed the damage caused by good people who have done nothing wrong only to spend thousands and thousands of dollars protecting themselves and their legal in a court of law because some lawyer thought there was a chance of success no matter how small. Yes most will prevail but at what cost? This is how those outside of Scouting seek to effect change. Most people do not have the resources to fight and most will not because they cannot risk it. Essentially they will walk away because well meaning people beat them into total submission. Ultimately the BSA and its membership is being bullied in a very real and very legal way. Good people will be destroyed by those that may mean well but failed in their duty to make choices that may be heartbreaking but right. The BSA is not for everyone and sometimes as adults we have to stand up and say no. Not every boy can be a member and not every adult can be a leader. You say the letter is worst case but because of personal experience I believe it is best case. Sadly this is the society we live in.

        • A good scout truly follows the motto of “Be Prepared” and that means considering the worst case scenario with regard to a situation under consideration requiring a decision.. its a good motto.. i try to live it daily.
          timeless truth

    • If a Catholic church wanted to exclude an individual from membership in their church they can do so. No one is suing the Catholic church because they’re being excluded from a congregation because they’re gay; nor do we hear about lawsuits brought against the church because they excommunicated someone. They can legally discriminate and they can back it up with the religious convictions of their organization

      So if a Catholic-sponsored Boy Scout troop decides to exclude someone because they are gay, they can back it up with the religious convictions of the organization (the Catholic Church) and there is no law suit to be had.

      Rather than using the BSA’s moral objection to homosexuality (the one that was established in the 2000 SCOTUS ruling but could be overturned in by the vote in May) to defend yourself, you would use the Catholic Church’s moral objection to homosexuality. No debate, you’re a private organization, you can discriminate how you please.

      Now if you are chartered by a public school or a public library and you want to discrimination against homosexuals, well, then you may be in for legal trouble.

      • Please do not misunderstand me. I could care less about gay straight black white tall short male or female. There are serious questions that have not been answered. Everyone just wants to pretend life will go on as usual and there will be no consequences from National’s actions today or in May. That is simply naive and quite frankly ignorant. The larger issue is an organization’s ability to define membership criteria and apply policies and procedures equally across the board. I find it morally reprehensible and patently dishonest to join a volunteer organization that I do not meet the requirement for and then demand that requirement be changed just to accommodate me while kicking long time members to the curb. I would never join the NAACP and then demand they create a white award for me at their awards show. I would never join the Congressional Black Caucus and then demand they let other white legislators in. This is no different.

        • I joined a volunteer organization that I do meet the requirement for and I am demanding that requirement be changed so other moral human beings can benefit from the great things Scouting provides. I don’t want to kick any members (long-time or new) to the curb… I want the BSA to become an open and accepting organization where we all can be members together.

      • The Roman Catholic Church does not consider same sex attraction – homosexuality – a sin. The grievous sin is homosexual acts. Thus celibate gay or chaste lesbian ok. I’m paraphrasing… for the fine print see the Vatican’s on-line Catechism and US Conference of Catholic Bishops website for exact wording.
        I bring this up as an example because I propose the BSA should at least separate policy on homosexual youth and from adult policy. I assume and hope more of us would be accepting of BSA youth struggling with same sex attraction.

        • I don’t think the BSA is saying that someone who has homosexual desires is being excluded from membership; how would anyone know? If you openly present yourself as a homosexual then you no longer meet the membership requirement of the BSA with regard to this issue.. I don’t see why there would be a need for a separate policy for youth and adult leaders? If you don’t feel in the truth of your heart that you are honest in standing up and reciting the Scout Oath then you should probably not join the BSA; why would you? It would like being a liar to yourself… I would imagine Godly people that struggle with the sinfulness of homosexuality also know in their hearts if they can stand and recite the Scout Oath with a true sense of honor.. If you can’t then you should probably resign because that’s simply one of the requirements of being in the BSA.. Everyone doesn’t have to be a member of the BSA; its ok if you join another organization that doesn’t have the same standards for membership..

  16. Let’s face it, sexuality is not a “core value” of Scouting. In fact sex and sexuality isn’t even a topic in Scouting.

    You (and your faith) may say it’s wrong… I (and my faith) may say it’s ok… why can’t we both be Scouts?

    You might think eating bacon is ok… a Jewish Scout might find that morally wrong and not “clean” or “obedient” to his God… a Muslim Scout may also say eating bacon is against his duty to God (as the Quran forbids it)… a vegetarian Scout may feel eating that meat is unhealthy and against his duty to keep himself “physically strong”… a vegan Scout may believe it is inhumane and not “friendly,” “courteous,” or “kind” to kill a pig for meat. Yet we don’t debate bacon. we let all in Scouting regardless of their diets and beliefs.

    A Scout is reverent, “he respects the beliefs of others.” Let’s end this discrimination against homosexuals and let them enjoy the benefits of Scouting too!

    • Thank you Paul. I don’t know how clearer that could be said.

    • Paul O,
      While I would like this to be a non issue as well, what do you suggest as the compromise? The outside groups backing this bid identify themselves by their sexuality. I don’t bring up my sexuality when I introduce myself, however these groups and many former scouts that are gay do.

      • They aren’t asking to come in and broadcast their sex lives with the Scouts. I don’t talk about my sexuality with Scouts… nor would a gay leader. A gay leader bringing his husband/partner to a Court of Honor isn’t bringing up his sexuality any more than if I were to bring my wife to a Court of Honor.

        • Oh but they are. A gay Eagle scout. A lesbian Cub leader, etc. They do and will continue to broadcast their sex lives to everyone.

        • Aggressive Militant Homosexuals have an agenda of trying to normalize their sexual behavior in the eyes of men.. That’s why their trying to take over the BSA and have taken over certain mainstream Christian denominations like the Lutherans, Presbyterian (USA), and Episcopalians.. That’s why they attack the covenant of marriage thinking they can change God’s will on what a marriage covenant with Him can be; don’t see that happening… God has already revealed to us through His Word that He sees homosexual behavior as an abomination to His creation… If your a Christian and have been baptized in the Holy Spirit then His creation is also the temple of the Holy Spirit… Why should the scouts answer the call of a group that includes less than 1% of our population just to appease the media who is trying to dictate our culture.. It’s ok if homosexuals aren’t accepted into the BSA.. They don’t have to join our organization.. I don’t think I’ve ever joined an organization where I wasn’t going to be accepted; why would I… If those are their membership guidelines then that’s their freedom to choose; I respect their right freely choose how to run their organization for their own purpose and reasons… I’ll be tolerant and respectful of their rights given to them under the US Constitution and upheld by any Supreme Court decision that has been made supporting their rights to freely choose how they want to operate…

        • According to your reasoning, if I were black and I joined the KKK, I should expect the KKK to change it’s policies to accommodate my agenda? Makes perfect sense to me. I think everyone should join a private organization that is diametrically opposed to their views and expect, no demand that the policies of said organization should be changed. With this kind of thinking no wonder America is in its twilight.

        • Your one person Marcus.. one opinion.. but then there will be the homosexual leader who brings his homosexual lover to parents night ir maybe their lover will be at camp as an assistant.. should the manual be changed to say no homosexual lovers should be together at camps etc..? got to think of worst case scenarios as if homosexuals and other groups haven’t caused scouting enough problems.. your talking about best case scenarios.. what about the militant homosexual who shows public displays of affection to their lover in front if scouts?? these are the truths homosexuals are trying to force on our organization.. isn’t ok that we don’t want to have any of it.. for what??

      • Brad, I think when a former Scout who is gay wants to provide input on this issue, mentioning that he is gay puts his other thoughts in context for us. He can speak to the issue from a point of view that the rest of us can’t. His voice, his perspective, is part of what we should be listening to as we consider the pros and cons of changing the policy. While this may be “identifying himself by his sexuality”, I think it makes sense in the context of this issue. It certainly doesn’t mean that he’d be discussing it in scouting scenarios such as troop meetings, summer camp, etc.

        As an example, here is one scout’s perspective.

        • How dramatic, funny thing is that all it really accomplishes is re-enforcing the majority view. That radical homosexuals do have an agenda.

    • Bacon! The scouts in my troop can relate. Thanks Paul O.

      • Luke Drummond // February 6, 2013 at 7:10 pm //

        MORALLY STRAIGHT, come on leaders, stand up to this, tearing down the Boy Scouts of America, if we let immoral behavior into Scouts, we might as well throw out the Oath, Law, and the motto, as well.

    • I think homosexuals should respect the beliefs of others and allow the scouts to run their organization as they see fit in fulfilling the mission they’ve chosen to fulfill.. If you don’t like scouting the way it is then why would you be interested in scouting at all.. I suggest you start your own organization that is built on the standards you want to build into your own organization… Your free to choose to do that and the BSA is free to choose to do what they choose to do.. You don’t have to choose to be a member of the BSA and the BSA doesn’t have to allow everyone into their organization… The BSA is free to set the membership standards they choose to set excluding people that simply don’t reflect the moral character they stand for.. It’s ok that they choose freely to do this and if you don’t qualify you should be tolerant of their decisions and end your ridiculous attacks against policies..

  17. Let’s see the Summit was provided because the government withdrew it’s support for the National Jamboree site because of the BSA stand. So now if the BSA reverses it’s position I wonder how the contributors to the Summit feel. Gee I would feel it was theft by deception. The majority of the BSA contributors are probably scratching their heads now.

    • Sorry, Stephen D. Bechtel, Jr. Foundation… no take-backs!

      • Actually case law says otherwise. If a donor gives to a nonprofit with limitations, specifications, etc and the nonprofit does something else they can get it back.

        Remember Garth Brooks and the hospital? He got his money back
        ($500,000 donation + $500,000 punitive)

  18. A very sad day. The executive board is neither brave nor reverent. Just as there are religious people who are against any change, there are religious people in favor of inclusiveness. I thought the BSA was open to all religious beliefs, but apparently not. There are many churches, packs and troops who want their program to be open to everyone and wish that they had that option.

    • The churches, packs and troops that truly want to do that can choose to leave the BSA and start their own youth program promoting homosexuals as their leaders.. Maybe that would be best; if you started your own organization.. I wonder how well you would attract members? Maybe you’ll find much success.. Why would you think the BSA is open to all religious beliefs? Did they lead you to believe this or did you simply not take the time to understand their membership requirements.. They haven’t changed from what they were; maybe you just changed your mind about being a member.. You don’t have to renew your membership now that you’ve come to understand that scouting really does have an oath that calls for boys to life a morally straight life and have a belief in God.. you are free to walk away and I’d encourage you to walk away if you find the BSA to not be the right organization for you…

  19. Leave Scouting as it is ASM

  20. Morally straight means no sexual activity either homosexual or heterosexual. Adult sexual orientation is irrelevant as long as there is no pedophilia!

    • Albert J Weiscraft III // February 6, 2013 at 3:21 pm //

      I would gladly drop kick a gay or straight leader from my troop if they started telling the kids of their sexual exploits. If it is a scout, I’d counsel them first but with a warning that this is not an appropriate topic of conversation. There is no place in the BSA program for this activity, there is too much other, just as much fun, stuff to do.

    • its not irrelevant.. The scouts are going on overnight campouts with leaders.. As a parent this would be very relevant to me.. You’ll never convince me after seeing what aggressive militant homosexuals have been doing that they don’t have an agenda to carry their agenda of trying to normalize their sinful behavior into the BSA trying to teach boys that homosexuality is ok and normal behavior and should be tolerated by everyone.. Their is a true agenda and maybe the people attacking the BSA should be more honest of what their true plans are for the BSA..

  21. Gary Wilson // February 6, 2013 at 10:47 am //

    What the Executive Board has in effect said that this is is obviously a contentious issue and that if it is to be implemented successfully, wider local buy-in needs to be assured first.

    To be frank, some of the postings from both the left and right I’ve seen in various media over the past week show an appalling lack of the knowledge of BSA organization, history, the Youth Protection Plan, the non-sectarian nature of “Duty to God”, the apolitical obligations of registered Scouters, and the role of chartering organizations in BSA.

    So this and the rest of the internet isn’t the forum to debate it. I would suggest that if your interest really is in furthering Scouting and not in just promoting some outside political agenda, join a civilized, respectful discussion within your local district or council to provide your input as to how their representatives should then vote on it at the broader National Meeting in May.

    I’m certain there will be discussions about it at every District Roundtable across the country over the next few months. So if it’s really important to you, participate there, not here.

    • This is the perfect format to debate this issue and every voting member should read all these posts but still vote their true hearts desire when it comes time to actually cast a vote.. Why wouldn’t this be the perfect modern day forum.. Mass media takes the opportunity to try to dictate our culture every day.. It takes a discerning eye to see truth from lies.. If it wasn’t for the mass media this would be a non-issue as the number of homosexuals truly desiring to change scouting would be such a silent minority nobody would ever pay them any attention.. I’m not sure why their getting the attention their getting now; their still a tiny tiny minority and have no true basis from which to try to dictate our culture or any policies of the BSA.. In a democracy the minority really doesn’t rule the majority.. The majority just needs to remember their strength is in their numbers…

  22. Dan Toomey // February 6, 2013 at 10:52 am //

    This delay is unnecessary and disappointing. The right thing, to service all the boys who come to Boy Scouts regardless of their sexuality and to accept the help of honest, good, upright volunteers regardless of their sexuality, is clear. This policy, which is not based on the Scout Law or the Scout Oath, but which reflects the hidebound approach of “leaders” who fear to lead, should be eliminated immediately. It runs counter to the Boy Scouts role in American life.

  23. “To do my duty to God and my country” I believe God’s decision on the issue of homosexuality is quite clear. So this LBGT agenda on the BSA is not about tolerance or acceptance to homosexuality, it’s not about money, it’s about taking one small step at a time to eventually get to their ultimate goal of removing “God” from the BSA.

    • “To do my duty to God and my country” I believe God’s decision on the issue of homosexuality is also quite clear. This anti-gay agenda of the BSA is about intolerance and hate towards others, it’s not about “timeless values,” it’s about taking one small step at time to eventually get their ultimate goal of removing compassion and respect from the BSA. God loves homosexuals (or at least my God, who is a Christian God, does).

      • Yes, God loves the sinner, not the sin. And yes God’s decision on homosexuality is quite clear. At least in my Bible, it still lists it as a sin.

        • Well that’s the great thing about the diversity of America’s melting pot… you’ve got lots of different people, and you’ve got lots of different Gods and you’ve got lots of Bibles. Who said your God and your Bible is the one the BSA should force on all of us? To my God, being gay is not a sin.

        • Marucs,
          We are on the opposite side on this one, but tell me what you think would be a solution? I know you want to allow gays in. But some of those pushing for the change want more than that. They seem to want to not only be included but also identified by their sexuality. That would not be tolerant of my beliefs.

        • Connie Knie // February 6, 2013 at 12:55 pm //

          Brad, where does it say they want to be identified by their sexuality? What am I missing? Anyone, gay or straight who brings sex into the Boy Scout program should be asked to leave. Does anyone truly believe that if the BSA votes to rescind this policy that we will suddenly be talking about sex (or having it) in meetings or on campouts?

          Time for a reality check here.

          And might there be some folks who once they join see this as a chance to spout their beliefs? Yes (shoot folks do that now on a number of issues). But should they be asked to leave? You betcha. And there will be sufficient grounds to ask them to leave that have nothing to do with their sexual orientation……….

        • Connie,
          Yes some of these groups are identified by their sexuality. There is a strong possiblity we may be talking about sex a lot if we model this after other countries scouting programs. Have you looked as some of the leadership materials for scouts in other countries? The UK even has a leader’s guide for what to say when a boy comes out to you as gay at at scouting event. They say it is an honor to have this boy tell you about his sexuality. Without clear guidelines, this issue will be come up.

        • Connie Knie // February 6, 2013 at 4:29 pm //

          Well Brad,
          It seems that guidance will be what is needed if the ban is lifted. I have confidence that since we don’t allow sex to be one of the components in our program now, we won’t be changing that any time now.
          If a scout came to me now and shared some personal news of a sexual nature I would have to be guided by what he told me and take it from there.

        • It’s not about sexuality. And as usual some folks make a knee jerk reaction on what I was saying. We do allow male and female leader. So the BSA doesn’t discriminate on sexuality. Unless you’re saying we should also allow girls to be boy scouts? It’s all about identity politics. I agree if they change the policy to put in wording not to discriminate on sexual behavior (hetero, or homosexuality). I agree, people are not going to start openly flaunt their sexual orientation, if the policy is changed. The BSA doesn’t accept any sexual behavior regardless of orientation, the BSA is not the proper place for that activity. So if everyone agrees if sex isn’t suppose to be brought up in the BSA or asked? Then why are we having this conversation? It’s all about the BSA being tolerant regarding sexual orientation. Hypothetically, let’s say the BSA does change their policy this problem is going to go away? You’re so naive, like I mentioned in my original comment, its not about that. God does love everyone, I don’t hate homosexuals. Its all about my GOD thinks homosexuality is a sin, and my GOD thinks homosexuality is not a sin. So how do we resolve that problem. Well the next step is to remove “God” problem solved.

      • But God does say that homosexual behavior is sinful and an abomination against His creation.. At least that’s what the Word of God says in my copy of His Word.. And God offers forgiveness to sinful behavior through the blood of His son Jesus.. Truths don’t change just because you forget what His Word says.. God love’s sinners but he hates their sinfulness; keeps them from being closer to Him… just truths; I didn’t write His word; He did… can’t change it… mold your life to it; His Will…

    • Which God?

  24. For those wondering what Baden Powell would say or how he would feel I would encourage you to read his books. I would also encourage you to read the accounts of the first Boy Scout Troops and how selective they were. You will get a clear understanding of what Powell believed the Scout Oath and Law were for and how they work.

    • Can you supply a quote, excerpt, summary, or interpretation?

      • Scoutmaster Jason // February 6, 2013 at 12:37 pm //

        From “Scouting for Boys”, first edition, Baden Powell said, “every Scout should have religion”:
        “Religion seems a very simple thing: First: Love and Serve God. Second: Love and Serve your neighbor.” That’s it. Period. No endorsement of a particular creed or faith. Remember, England had torn itself apart for centuries pitting catholic against protestant. Baden Powell wanted a world movement of “peace scouts” (direct quote) bonded in brotherhood and a generalized love of god rooted in good deeds. As for morality, BP’s chapter on “continence” is the closest he comes. Paraphrased: “don’t masturbate.”
        By the way, there are more muslim scouts worldwide than any other faith, and in the US the religious emblem “duty to god” program recognizes 34 organized faiths, from African Methodist to Zoroastrianism. Many of these, including United Methodist, Episcopal, Presbyterian, United Church of Christ, and others have adopted inclusive policies. These faith communities are leading our scouts and their families as moral guides and sometimes as chartering organizations. National should embrace the true diversity of “a scout is Reverent” and accept that even christian sects disagree on this question AND that it’s none of our business to tell a scout how to Love and Serve God. Let the charter orgs set the policy and then let the scouts and their families vote with their membership.

        • The United Methodist Church does not accept sexually active homosexuals as ordained minsters in their churches… The Lutheran’s, Presbyterian (USA) (not American), and Episcopal church do… you should be more clear on what you mean by “inclusive policies”.. seems your trying to create a larger group than their actually is to support your argument… this is misleading..

      • Please understand I am not being difficult or obtuse. I asked the same question to a college Professor once regarding a similar subject. Here was his answer, If you want to know what he thought and why he thought the way he did you will do the work yourself. Besides why should you take my word over your own experience. You may disagree with me on my conclusion and offer your own.

    • The God that believes homosexuality is a sin. That is the GOD the LBGT want’s removed. Because the next activist group that is going to accuse the BSA of discrimination is the atheist groups. And they will want “God” to taken out of the Boy Scout Oath.

  25. DenMotherMaggie // February 6, 2013 at 11:33 am //

    Hey, BSA… you can’t keep calling them “timeless values” when they’re already out of date. Stop the discrimination! End the hate!

    • Markus Harrild // February 6, 2013 at 9:28 pm //

      This issue has nothing to do with hate or discrimination Den Mother Maggie. It does have to do with a private youth organizations right to determine and live by their aims, methods and ideals, whatever those ideals might may be. That is their right as a PRIVATE youth organization.

      If others don’t agree with or support the BSA’s policies and ideals, then those individuals have the right to quit and disassociate themselves from the private youth organization.

      I find it disingenuous that the gay, lesbian, transgendered, and bisexual activists and those who support them spend their time, and money to tear away at the founding ideals of a positive private youth organization like the BSA, but do NOTHING to build and establish a private youth organization for those gays, lesbians, transgendered, and bisexuals who desire to be a member of such a gay, lesbian, transgendered, and bisexual private youth organization.

      Don’t you think establishing such an organization would best serve their needs, rather than trying to destroy and take away the right that the BSA has, as a private youth organization.

      This is NOT about discrimination, hate, sexual orientation, or inclusiveness. It is about a basic right that any private organization holds in this free country.

  26. George Vincent // February 6, 2013 at 11:38 am //

    I pray that the executive councill will leave the membership policy the way it has been for 103 years. I change it and leave it up to the sponcer to dice will open them up to court cases by the hundreds and thus do what they are trying to do, distroy scouting.the other issue is how can a scout say morrilly strat when he knows he may be doing wrong . please excuse the spelling

  27. The Executive Board has a difficult decission to make and it should be allowed to take time. I just want to say, that there is a place for everybody in this world and we have a choice where we want to belong. It is nothing wrong with making a change, the question is whether the change is for a better. The BSA is a special organization and it’s values should be preserved not compromised. This is a home to young boys that are looking up to their leaders for their guidance and role models.’
    I am asking all of the scouting family parents. Can you imagine sending your son to a camp where he might ingage in a sexual activity with other boys, sleeping under the same tent, just because his gay leader is doing it and it is O.K.?
    This not a discrimination issue anymore! This word is overused anyway.
    This is an issue of loosing values that the majority of our population has and this organization preserved for over 100 years. Our youth is bombarded with so much contradicting information that can not process fast enough to know what is wright and what is wrong anymore! Could we give them a brake and keep their organization intact?
    We want to preserve our marriages and our values in our children!
    I hope that the Board will put our youth as a first priority when making a final decision.

    • You’re correct, Margaret, the interest of the boys and girls that we serve are the most important factor in this. The thing is, some of the boys and girls we serve are gay. We should consider their needs as well. Not only do they often need the acceptance they find in the BSA, they may also benefit from the leadership of a perfectly good upstanding citizen who happens to have a natural inclination to be attracted to members of the same sex.

  28. Ken Badgett // February 6, 2013 at 12:02 pm //

    Please publish a list, with contact information, of the National Council Representatives for each council in the USA. These individuals will vote at the national meeting in May on whatever policy is proposed and should expect to hear from the public over the next four months.

    • Gary Wilson // February 6, 2013 at 12:34 pm //

      You can find that by actively participating in person in your council and district. The Council President certainly one. And it isn’t the public whose opinion counts… it’s the ones actively working within Scouting.

  29. Ellen Dougherty // February 6, 2013 at 12:06 pm //

    When the USGSA proudly proclaimed their tie to Planned Parenthood, many people were very upset over this. So much so, that USGSA retracted their statement and continue to deny their relationship with PP. A few moms were quite upset over this, that they created their own group- American Heritage Girls. The by laws were written according to BSA guidelines and is a wing of BSA. This group is leaps and bounds across the nation because of its Christian ideology.
    2 things bother me about this whole thing. This is agenda driven. It has been agenda driven since the late 1970s. Since when should someone else’s agenda dictate what a private group does or does not do? Think about it. They tried suing the BSA and lost. So, they went the most feasible route- getting rid of their funding. This agenda is only 30 plus years old. It is not the 21st century as many claim it is. I grew up in a very gay neighborhood in the 60s & 70s. My gay neighbors had respect for their heterosexual neighbors and their children. We had them over to our houses for dinners, birthday parties, etc. Everyone knew and respected the boundaries. Today, there are no boundaries. With boundaries blurred or erased, that brings me to my second concern. How will National be able to fund a defense for all these mini-fires that will take place at the local level? I assure you, that as soon as this passes and the bylaws are re-written, every BSA unit and Charter that says it is closed to the LGBT community, will get sued. And the Catholic church right a long with it.
    So, why haven’t they created their own counter group as did the American Heritage Girls? There are the Royal Rangers – another boys group that was started by the Assemblies of God. Why are they not being targeted. They are a closed christian based program? No, it is not about them being “excluded” or “included” it is about destroying a foundation that has been built on large principles.

  30. I’m an old Eagle Scout, served my country over 13 years (so people have freedoms), and currently work with youth groups in sports and just recently enrolled my 12 year old son into Scouting. The reason I wanted my son to become a Scout was to learn the moral and beleafs of the BSA. I have always talked with him concerning being an Eagle, walking the path of Scouting and Eagle, making discussions based on the Scouting principales. Now, the National Council seems to have lost there backbone concerning this issue. I personelly feels that our charter should remain as is! Based on the 103 year history of keeping ourselves “Morally Straight”.
    Ya know, if you stop and look at it, this is the same what happened when “Prayer” was removed from our schools, a “hand full” of people pushed and pushed until they got their way, not what the majority wanted. Making it politically incorrect?? Kinda like whats happening here, huh!

  31. So let me ask this… as a member of the World Organization of Scouting Movement, why is BSA the only country that has this policy? I can’t find a reference to this in any other, including in BP’s home country

    • That’s because sexual orientation wasn’t, and isn’t, one of Baden-Powell’s founding values, aims or methods. There’s no reason for this policy to exist!

  32. If our military can let gays openly serve… why can’t the Boy Scouts do the same?

    • Because the military isn’t a Godly organization nor is it a private organization with it’s rights to operate freely protected under the US Constitution and substantiated in a Supreme Court Decision… The BSA isn’t an agency of any government and chooses to be a Godly organization with a desire to operate under Biblical Principles in which God says homosexuality is an abomination of His creation; the temple of the Holy Spirit that He created… Our military used to follow similar principles but chose not too.. their choice to do what they did and the BSA’s Choice to do what they do in order to fulfill the mission statement they’ve set out to fulfill… Are scouts wrong in taking an oath to live a morally straight lifestyle which includes many more things than not choosing to participate in homosexual behavior… NO!! their not wrongful… God says they aren’t wrongful and He matters more than anything else…. just truths; can’t change just truths…. like gravity; never changes…

    • Markus Harrild // February 6, 2013 at 9:09 pm //

      And by doing so it has created a cluster flop.

      • How so?

  33. Does anyone know when exactly in May this vote will be taking place?

  34. Just to clarify where BSA currently stands on this issue.

    BSA currently expresses a message that homosexual conduct is not morally straight.

    Any delay in not changing that expression, is choosing to continue an expression of hate and disdain toward all homosexual citizens of the United States, as well as their friends and family.

    A decision to not make a decision, is the same as a decision to support the current message of disdain for gays. Until they decide to change their current expression, BSA will continue to feel the consequences of that expression, just as they have for the last 20 years.

    • Ellen Dougherty // February 6, 2013 at 12:51 pm //

      So, cwgmpls- You admit that the gay agenda has only been around for 20 years? The BSA 103 and the bible over 2000 years. Lets put things into perspective here. What about disdain and discrimination against heterosexuals? I feel like my rights are being violated as well. Because I believe the words written in the bible is the word of God, does not make me homophobic.

      • No. It was 23 years ago that BSA told the Supreme Court that BSA teaches that homosexual conduct is not morally straight. BSA funding and membership has tanked ever since. BSA’s assertion of this message is 20 years old.

    • Markus Harrild // February 6, 2013 at 1:26 pm //

      Remember, the BSA is a PRIVATE youth organization and as such has the RIGHT to determine its operating precepts. No one is forcing gays or lesbians to join, nor do they have to join. So your notion of “freedom of choice” only extends to you and activist gay, lesbian, transgendered and bisexual individuals. Your choice is that the BSA must accept gay, lesbian, transgendered, and bisexuals as Scout leaders. What about a private organization’s right to say, “No.”

      • I never said BSA doesn’t have a right to their message. I’m just saying it is not a good idea. And disdain for an entire group of people is not very Scout-like, besides.

        • Markus Harrild // February 6, 2013 at 7:48 pm //

          cwgmpls:
          You’re missing the larger point of the issue. It’s not about inclusiveness, the issue is about a private youth organization’s right to determine and live by their aims, methods and ideals, whatever those may be and whether or not anyone else thinks its a good idea or not.

          To those who bring up the inclusiveness or discriminative disputes, I find their reasoning faulty. One hundred years ago the policy of being morally straight was not an issue. Fifty years ago this was not an issue, but today in the “enlightened” 21st century, many individuals live free and easy lives with an anything goes type attitude about what is immoral and what is moral. Ones preferred sexual orientation or the willingness for sympathetic individuals to promote this issue as such, has NOTHING to do with this issue and is a red herring.

          What those issues do show is a pejorative social degradation of the mores within our culture and society, a diminished belief in God and His teachings. But , as you see, the God and sexual orientation issues take us away from the salient issue and that is:

          “It’s not about inclusiveness, the issue is about a private youth organization’s right to determine and live by their aims, methods and ideals, whatever those may be and whether or not anyone else thinks its a good idea or not.”

        • DEstridge // February 7, 2013 at 7:15 am //

          I guess disdain for drunkards, drug addicts, and adulterers is not very Scout-like either. Adultery, polygamy, incest, pedophilia, bestiality, homosexuality are all sexual sin. Just because something isn’t illegal doesn’t mean that it is morally straight!

        • I have tried to teach Boy Scouts where ever I find them that there is more to morally straight than sex or sexual orientation just as there is more to clean and reverent than good personal hygiene and personal prayers. Scouts and their leaders do not get to parse and parcel the Oath and Law to justify poor behavior at any level. We operate within the frame work of policy to provide clarity for membership. We operate within the bounds of the Oath and Law to build better people. Respect does not equal acceptance nor does love mean acquiescence. Sometimes we have to say no even when it means feelings get hurt. Sometimes we have to not join groups or organizations that we really want to because we do not meet the criteria for membership. We have a duty to be true to ourselves and if that means we are not able to associate with volunteer organizations for whatever reason we do not join. It is not appropriate or ethical to deliberately cause discontent or sabotage any group merely because we feel that we are entitled to belong or we feel we are magically entitled to fair treatment. As adults we are raising generations of youth that suffer severe entitlement issues and who believe they should get everything they want even at the expense of others. We have adults and youth who have never heard the word no.

        • Grouping homosexuals with adultery, polygamy, incest, pedophilia, bestiality is exactly the problem. Morally straight wasn’t a problem until BSA re-defined “morally straight” in 1991. Many scout families don’t agree with that re-definition.

        • Respectfully here is a thought. Then do not join. There is no entitlement to belong to a group that you do not meet membership criteria. Just say no and form your own organization and compete in the arena of ideas on a level playing field. Teach a deeper lesson to youth i.e. it may be unfair but we will do the hard work and defeat them our way with our own voice and with our own organization.

        • That is exactly the problem. People aren’t joining BSA. Membership is down 20% since BSA asserted its anti-gay teachings.

          It is the national council’s job to figure out what to do next. That is what they are doing. Telling people to not join BSA is not in the interest of the future of BSA.

        • You said below that membership is down 20% due to not allowing gays,

          I call you on that, Membership is down in most organizations, (4-H, Lions, Kiwanis,….) People are busier each year and the need to belong has diminished due to the internet. Kids would rather play video games than be active in anything these days including sports,

          4-H was once a proud organization of rural America but the local agent admitted to me they are now a third tier organization meaning that they will choose two other activities over them, Usually sports which in recent years trumps wed night church service and anything else with mandatory practices., .

          It use to be kids have nothing to do., Now there are too many choices.

      • You’re right, the BSA is a PRIVATE youth organization and as such has the RIGHT to determine its operating precepts. So why don’t we also kick out all blacks, or Jews, or left-handed people? Just because we legally can exclude gays doesn’t mean we should.

        • Marcus, do you read your comments before you hit send? No one wants to kick out anyone. If you are a homosexual and are a leader in BSA you will not be kicked out. You will be kicked out when you shove your agenda down our throats. Witness the lesbian Cub mom. She was the one who made her homosexuality an issue. She was the one who wanted a fight, well she got it and didn’t like the result. So she did what all cowardly people do, she played the “VICTIM” card.

        • Markus Harrild // February 6, 2013 at 8:02 pm //

          Private organizations are not for everyone, that’s way they’re PRIVATE. As such they have rights to determine who can become members and what requirements those who join must follow. Whether someone disagrees with their ideals doesn’t matter.

          Those who disagree don’t have to join the private organization. They can find like-minded individuals and establish their own youth organization, with their own ideals and vision.

          I respect your right to disagree with the BSA’s ideals, but if you and others who feel the way you do, don’t agree with or like the BSA’s ideals and policy, you all have the right to form your own private organization for youth.

          In fact, I wish someone would do so to take care of all those poor folks wandering around out there who are searching for gay, lesbian, transgendered, and bisexual youth organization that they can join and support.

          This issue isn’t about inclusiveness or sexual orientation; it’s about the right of a private youth organization to follow their ideals – period.

        • johnnyrat78, Take for example my friend Todd. He was a Scout leader, he is gay. He never once talked about his sexuality at Scouts; never once brought it up. But the parent committee found out he had a boyfriend and they asked him to leave. I’d call that kicking someone out.

        • Then he should have never joined. It is patently dishonest intellectually and incorrect morally to join an organization knowing you do not fit the membership requirements, hide or in this case deliberately not disclose a disqualifying situation then scream discrimination when found out. The point is however well meaning he should never have been there in the first place. We may not like it, we may even feel it is unfair but that is life. Many adult leaders have influenced youth in positive ways and most have not been in the BSA. There are more appropriate avenues. As I have posted many times a volunteer organization is that, volunteer. There are no inherent rights to join and as such there are expectations of accommodation if you do not meet the criteria. The BSA is only responsible for its members who are registered and active and who meet the membership requirements. Everyone else can just go away as they have no vested interest in the program or have no business being there.

        • Marcus, again you throw out a straw man. If he let people know he had a boyfriend, then he was open about and obviously happy to let everyone know his sexual preference. I don’t go to our troop meetings every Thursday night and announce that I am married.

        • johnnyrat78… So you’re telling me that no one in your community or in your troop knows you have a wife? You keep her hidden away and never talk about her in public or are seen with her anywhere? Wow!

        • johnnyrat, the lesbian mom den leader in Ohio, Jennifer Tyrell, did NOT make her sexual orientation an issue. She was just a den leader, doing her usual thing. They asked her to help with some of the financial aspects of her den. When she came across something she thought was inconsistent, she asked questions about it. That’s when they kicked her out, and used her sexual orientation as pretext. Yes, she then started a change.org petition on the matter, but someone else made her orientation an issue first. She was not shoving it down anyone’s throat.

        • This is not the full truth but you can pick and choose to serve your purpose.. she should never have joined the BSA knowing their membership requirements.. she should have simply enrolled her children if that was her free will and declined any opportunities to register knowing the membership requirements.. she registered with a purpose to attack the system; this is the truth.. I wonder if she will ever admit the truth?? why would she now.. integrity???? she attacked my council but the truth is known about her true intent.. if your not a member then you really have no right to address the BSA on this issue.. was that part of why she joined??

        • Dear beth,
          I am not sure you know all the facts. But I will play along. Jennifer did make a choice to make waves when she joined Cub Scouts. By signing her application, she consented to adhere to the guidelines and rules of the BSA. She automatically disqualified herself, when she said she was trustworthy.

        • Boys become Cub scouts when they are very young. It doesn’t make sense to ask a 7 year old if he thinks he might be gay when he gets older, and if so to not join Cubs. To say “then these boys should never have joined the BSA” is to ignore the fact that by the time they realize they are experiencing same-sex attraction, they have invested many years of hard work in Scouting. To ask them to give all that up, even if their religious beliefs don’t consider being gay sinful or morally wrong, is simply wrong, and usually based on fear, misguided assumptions, and stereotypes.

          A Scout is kind and friendly. There’s nothing kind or friendly about shunning hard working Scouts and Scouters, who have worked alongside their straight friends and colleagues for many years, just because they are gay. Private Catholic high schools don’t shun these boys; why should the BSA?

          And if these shunned folks raise a ruckus – well, if they are simply telling their story and asking folks to consider whether the BSA behaved appropriately or not, and whether the policy should be changed, that’s not shoving an agenda down anyone’s throat. That’s speaking out in a way that we Americans are proud of – peacefully using our first amendment rights to create a public dialog about whether the status quo should change.

        • No it is called holding young men accountable and there is a big difference. You appear to excuse virtually any behavior in order to keep from holding young men accountable or to avoid hurting feelings. Choices and decisions have consequences. I have been adamant that when you no longer meet ANY volunteer organizations membership requirements whether it is age 8 to 80 you walk away. This is not based in fear or stereo types it is based in reality. Duty, Honor, Loyalty, Trustworthy, and Obedient are not just lofty goals that the boys do not have to learn. They are not optional principles or standards. Why would anyone of conscience continue in a pursuit that they were no longer eligible for? Why would anyone of integrity enable the stealing of a rank advancement that was not earned? There is no entitlement to continue in the Boy Scouts if you do not meet membership standards. There is no entitlement to stay because you worked hard or because somehow you are owed something. Any adult leader that would enable ANY young man to pursue an award or rank they did not earn is obligated by duty and honor to walk away and not reward poor choices. That young man should also turn in his ill gotten gains and walk away. Sometimes adult leaders have to say no. Sometimes adult leaders have to say thanks for your efforts but you do not meet the requirements come back when you do. Sometimes adult leaders have to be compassionate by being tough and holding the line because to do less demeans what those who met the FULL requirements not just part of them. There is more to Eagle or for that matter even a Scout than completing some requirement on a list or completing a service project. When you part and parse the Scout Oath and Scout Law into a two tiered system the entire system crumbles because pretty soon there are no standards left. Adults cannot and should not right every perceived wrong and protect a Scout from any adversity or hurt feeling. We are raising generations of “entitlement” children that cannot understand how or why anyone would ever dare to hold them accountable or tell them no.

        • Andrew,

          One cannot be held accountable for an immutable characteristic. One can be held accountable if he were to commit a crime or an immoral act. To base a judgment of character on how one “be’s,” how one exists as a human person, is preposterous. Judgment of character must be based on how one thinks, speaks, and acts. Does one’s thoughts, words and actions exhibit trustworthiness, loyalty, helpfulness, friendliness, courteousness, kindness, obedience, cheerfulness, thriftiness, bravery, cleanliness, and reverence? If yes, he has character worthy of scouting.

        • The immutable characteristic is not what is at issue, rather the conscious decision to participate under false pretenses. I am a firm believer in be who you are. Make no mistake lying to yourself is every bit as wrong as lying to others. Taking an award or rank that has not been fully earned is theft. I know many atheists and agnostics that exhibit good character and live the tenants of the Scout Law but they are not eligible to be Scouts or Scout Leaders. I know young men who have walked away from Scouting not because they were kicked out but because they were not willing to hide who they are or what they believe in order to meet the membership requirements. They were not willing to stay under the cover of a lie to earn some patch or piece of paper. They were not willing to allow others to lie, cheat, steal, hide, distort, or obfuscate the standards just so they could stay. Yes I agree with you character is words, actions, and thoughts. Those who live life as they are. Those who are unwilling to allow anyone to lie for them. Those who are willing to walk away because it is right that they do so. Those are the ones I want with me in the hard times because they have shown the character that means far more than a patch. They have shown the character that can truly make a difference in someones life. They are the ones I want working for me in the business world. They are the ones I want my kids to know because they uphold the meaning and wear the fabric of the Scout Oath and Scout Law even though they are not technically Scouts or Scout Leaders.

        • Andrew, I suppose we’re beating around the bush here. My point is that the determining factor of whether one should be a participant and able to advance in the Boy Scouts of America, as it is presently stated, is in contradiction with the values that we both hold, and that the BSA purports to hold.

          Does the BSA have a right to exclude certain persons from membership? Yes, freedom of association, first amendment.

          Does the BSA’s policy match the Scout Oath and Law? No.

          While you may maintain that the honorable thing to do when one realizes that their being is in contradiction with the membership standards of an organization is to leave that organization in order to maintain honesty and integrity, I maintain that no organization should have a standard of membership based on how well one can exist-in-a-certain-way. It should be based on how well a young man can follow the Scout Oath and Law, not how lucky they were to have a particular biological or psychosocial makeup. In this instance, the honorable thing to do is to make the organization more just.

        • Well stated. We will have to agree to disagree. I am unwilling to legitimize what in my opinion are poor character flaws. That has nothing to do with gay or straight. My heart goes out to those dealing with those issues. The BSA is extremely dependent on exist-a-certain-way that is how Baden Powell intended the Oath and Law to be. Have a blessed day.

        • As unsatisfactory as I find this resolution, I hope you likewise have a blessed day.

        • johnnyrat, when Jennifer Tyrell joined the BSA as a tiger parent and den leader, she asked the cubmaster if it would be a problem that she is gay. She was told it was not a problem. The unit didn’t have a problem with it. Her son just wanted to do all the fun scouting activities that his friends were doing. As a good mom, she was doing her best to contribute to his pack. All kids should be so lucky as to have such an involved parent. Not all the kids in my pack have that.

          (I’m well versed in the specifics of this case, by the way. My facts are not lacking. Thanks).

      • Markus -
        I completely agree that the BSA has the legal right to deny membership to gay and lesbian Scouts and Scouters. However, the fact that something is legal does not always mean that it is the right thing to do.

        In this case, I think –
        The friendly thing to do would be to welcome all boys who are willing to do the work involved with scouting into the BSA.
        The kind and courteous thing to do would be to reach include those who may be “different” from the average scout and help them to feel at home in the BSA.
        The reverent thing to do would be to allow each CO to let their religious beliefs guide them to decide whether to open their troop to gay Scouts and Scouters.
        The brave thing to do would be to give this change a chance.

      • Markus, yes the BSA is a private organization and they have the right to set their membership policies as they see fit. They also have a right to decide that their policy excluding a large number of people simply for who they were born to be is no longer in their best interests. That’s what they are considering now.

        • the homosexual population is not a large number of people as you suggest. they are a tiny tiny percentage of the overall population in this country; naturally.. without the media to amplify their tiny voice we wouldn”t even be discussing this.. the liberal mainstream un-american media has chosen to lead the attack against the BSA and identify them with what their doing; i never watch them, that’s one they don’t reach with their lies for sure.. Scouts are doing fine with the program as it is and have a lot more to loose if they choose to change to an immoral membership policy.. people are abandoning religious denominatiins that have decided to ordain homosexual leaders and create some sort of homosexual union without a Godly covenant to create a marriage… its ok if were different; you should respect and tolerate our place and i’ve never gone out if my way to pay any attention to what homosexuals, atheists, and agnostics do or have to say about anything.. why would I; the aggressive militant members of these groups are just ruining things for everyone.. God always has His victory though; In His time and in His way.. you can count on that… all of our bodies die but some find eternal life with Him and the Holy Bible shows the way…

    • Is it ok if I speak the truth of my heart and simply say that i think homosexual behavior is repulsive… I’m not saying I hate anyone but that I find homosexuality to be repulsive.. is it important that you choose to speak for me??? I’ll speak for myself and allow you to speak for yourself.. It’s also ok if I choose to believe God has revealed Himself through His Word being the Holy Bible. It’s also Ok if I choose to try to follow Biblical Principles as the model for my life… It’s also ok if I like the BSA just the way it is; a Godly organization founded on Biblical Principles.. It’s also OK if I choose not to follow a sexually active homosexual, homosexual, atheist, or agnostic as my moral leader or spiritual leader.. Its a truth that a total group of homosexuals and bisexuals equal less than 3.4% of the population and that I don’t recognize them as a majority to speak to any issue.. It’s ok if I believe the the ACLU isn’t more powerful than the US Constitution or the US Supreme Court’s decision that the BSA is a private organization with the right under the US Constitution to operate their organization any way they choose as long as they don’t disobey the law.. It’s ok if I believe that discrimination between right and wrong is ok, moral and immoral is ok, truth and lies is ok…. It’s ok if I be free too… and it’s ok if the tiny minority of homosexuals choose to be tolerant of the BSA and allow them to do their own thing and I have a strong feeling that the BSA has never nor will ever aggressively attack the homosexuals for their sinful behavior; I’ve been in the organization for many many years and I’m and Eagle Scout and I’ve never taught any person to hate anyone nor have I ever been taught by any member of the BSA to hate anyone including the homosexual community… The minority really has no voice in this unless the media amplifies them disproportionately above the True and significant majority.. I’d be a fool to allow the media to dictate my morality, or my culture.. They don’t have the kind of power they think they do… And I teach my children the same lessons… Truth never changes no matter how many lies are told…

      • You are free to say that. But why make BSA the spokesperson for your belief? Especially when so many other Scouts don’t agree with you.

        • The BSA i their own spokesperson. And, they have SPOKEN for the last 103 years. So, if you really want to know how the BSA views the “issue” (an issue they did not make an issue) refer back to history and what the BSA was built upon a century ago.

        • This is just about the silliest statement regarding this issue. Just who are these “so many other Scouts” ?

        • BSA’s speech about gays started in 1991. 22 years ago, not 103 years ago.

          These “so many other Scouts” are the ones who have now gotten the national council’s attention and led them to re-consider the ban.

        • mismysis – The BSA made this issue an issue when they chose to expel James Dale because he was quoted as saying he was gay in a newspaper article. They made it an issue when they asked Pack 442 to remove their non-discrimination statement from their Pack web site. They made it an issue when they removed Denise Steele from her leadership position because her partner picked her up at summer camp. There are other examples. None of these cases had anything to do with abuse, or inappropriate speech or actions within the context of scouting. Many people seem to think that the BSA has a defacto Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy. But it does not.

    • Homosexuals don’t own the word Gay.. I’m a Gay heterosexual man; who gave them claim to that word or did they just steal it? I have never seen anything in the BSA program that ever promoted that the BSA has a disdain for homosexuals.. They just don’t accept them as members of their organization.. If a homosexual wants to be a member of the BSA then quietly do so and leave your sexual preference at the door; who would know unless you make it an issue??

      • You can call yourself a gay heterosexual if you want to. Nobody is stopping you. Except BSA has the legal right to kick you out if you consider yourself openly gay.

        BSA considers open homosexuals to be immoral. That is disdain.

        • God said homosexual behavior is an abomination to His creation and a sin against Him.. I didn’t write His Word to us.. I agree and try to surrender my will to follow His principles; Biblical Principles.. BSA chooses to freely do the same thing as I’ve done; yoked equally so I’m a member because of it.. If you don’t choose the same then why would you even want to join our membership; or are you even a member?? if not then the policies we choose freely to create which abide by law; follow our legal rights under the US Constitution and have been supported by the Supreme Court if the US are ours to freely create and freely follow… Gotta Love America and the Freedoms protected by daily sacrifices…

        • Belief in your God is not a requirement for membership in BSA.

        • I find homosexuality to be repulsive and God finds homosexual behavior to be an abomination to Jis creation.. But God loves His creation and will always keep His arms wide open for sinners to repent and accept forgiveness through the nloid sacrifice of His Son; my savior.. truth of my heart is that I honestly have no disdain or hostility toward anyone; its the blessing of the Holy Spirit within me but I am repulsed by the sin of homosexual behavior; maybe you understand what I’m saying and maybe you don’t .. I don’t know if you’ve accepted His Holy Spirit into your life or not; I hope you have!! I wouldn’t consider my journey through life to be gay if I was burdened with the sinful desire to engage in homosexual relationships.. I struggle with my own cross but I’m not gathering an army to go on an aggressive militant mission to attack Godly organizations, institutions and people to force them to change God’s Holy Word just so I can pretend my sinful desire is now no longer a sin in God’s eyes.. I think that would be a pretty evil and selfish mission on my part.. If the scouts choose to change and homosexuals infiltrate leadership roles in the BSA then Godly people will just leave; its callex Freedom.. and in time they’ll build a new organization and the BSA will colapse from a lack of membership.. thats ok; God always has His victories in His time and in His Glorious Ways… why do you think non-denominational churches are growing and the Lutheran, Presbyterian (USA), Episcopalean churches are dying; God’s way of wooing them back to His Will.. when they begin pretending to marry homosexuals in His name they’ll have just about destroyed themselves and that’s ok too; God’s seen disobedience and rebellion before and He always Has the final say; He ALWAYS has His victory in His time and in His Glorious Way… be patient; you’ll see…

  35. Tom Weiser // February 6, 2013 at 12:59 pm //

    Do not change the way the scouting operates. I am a 20 year scouter with an Eagle son. The scouts need to stay the way it is in the interest of providing moral leadership to the youth of our country. We need these young men to take leadership positions in the future that will clearly demonenstate moral type leadership. Say no to any changes

  36. The foundation in which the BSA was built and structured (a century ago) has been the deciding factor in why parents, children and sponsors chose this organization opposed to others. The morals, values and beliefs adopted by BSA, initially, is what fueld its appeal and longevity. The “foundation” of this organization is why being a scout is such an honor. When you remove the “foundation” of ANYTHING it does not continue to stand as it once was.

    • The foundation in which BSA was built and structured was to leave sex education up to parents and clergy. BSA changed this foundation in the 1990s, to start teaching a message about homosexuality.

      The vast majority of Scouts families, liberal and conservative, don’t want BSA teaching boys about sex.

      Let’s move BSA back to its foundation and leave sex up to the family and church to deal with. That is the one, single position that all Scouts, liberal and conservative, can agree on.

      • Proof?????

        • “Education for sexuality belongs in the home… Scouters should reinforce rather than contradict what is being taught in the family and by the youth’s religious leaders” BSA Statement on Human Sexuality, 1984

          BSA held that policy until 1991, when the statement “We believe that homosexual conduct is inconsistent with the requirement in the Scout Oath that a Scout be morally straight and in the Scout Law that a Scout be clean in word and deed, and that homosexuals do not provide a desirable role model for Scouts.” was released. Starting in 1991, teaching about homosexuality was moved into part of BSA’s program, rather than being left to parents and clergy.

      • Sex, the teachings of it nor homosexuality were mentioned in my comment. The values, beliefs and morals in which BSA was created is what I spoke about. And still, that is the foundation on which it was built and, again, when the foundation of anything is removed it WILL fall. Furthermore, my comment is based upon my 12 year olds point of view. My very invested CHRISTIAN scout! Again, yet another truth, on which the BSA is built, its boys!

        • But the teaching sex has been part of BSA’s program since 1991. That is the problem the national council is trying to deal with now.

          BSA is not just for Christians, by the way. You should know that if you are a Scout. Read “A Scout is Reverent”.

        • My very invested 14 year old Scout believes the current policy is immoral. So who’s right? Well, what I believe is that we all are. If you and your scout believe homosexuality to be immoral, that is your right. If my scout and I do not believe it to be immoral, that is our right. A scout is reverent. We respect the beliefs of others. So where is the disconnect with the proposed policy change?

  37. BSA have to be divided in two or more organization, like Spain scouting. They have an umbrella organization of scouting by Law. It divided in various organization: ASDE a non religious scouting, Catholic scouting, and others. they participate in the world scouting movement and any scouting activities. The scout and their family chose the troop, council, organization they value, like and enjoy.

    • BSA’s structure is divided in a similar way. That is what Chartering Organizations are for. The Chartering Organization retains the right to conduct its Scouting program according to its own policies and guidelines, as well as screen and select unit leaders who meet the organization’s standards.

      BSA has been structured this way since 1911. I don’t know where anyone got the idea that all BSA troops all have to have the exact same policies, guidelines, and leadership standards. They don’t. A CO can make a Catholic troop, a Mormon troop, a non-religious troop, whatever type of troop agrees with the guidelines of the CO.

      Each CO gets to make their own rules for their troop in this regard, as long as they also adhere to BSA national rules. It always has been that way.

  38. Scouting is a values based organization. Those values include the Scout Oath and the Scout Law:

    Scout Oath
    On my honor I will do my best
    To do my duty to God and my country
    and to obey the Scout Law;
    To help other people at all times;
    To keep myself physically strong,
    mentally awake, and morally straight.

    Scout Law
    A Scout is …
    trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly,
    courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful,
    thrifty, brave, clean, and reverent.

    So… is sexuality discussed in either the Scout Oath or Scout Law? No. The closest you can come is morally straight.. So… what does morally straight mean?

    To be a person of strong character, your relationships with others should be honest and open. You should respect and defend the rights of all people. Be clean in your speech and actions, and remain faithful in your religious beliefs. The values you practice as a Scout will help you shape a life of virtue and self-reliance.

    It’s tied to religious beliefs. Ultimately this is going to come down to how the chartered organizations feel about the issue. The Boy Scouts does not have a single member – youth or adult – that “belongs” to the legal entity known as the Boy Scouts of America. The Boy Scouts “charters” organizations to offer a Scouting program. These organizations are typically churches, PTA groups, civic organizations, etc. Scouts then join that chartered organization. The vast majority of the Scout units out there are chartered by the Church of Latter Day Saints (the Mormons) and the Catholic Church. What the Boy Scout organization has said is that they are considering letting the issue of gay scouts/leaders be addressed via the chartered organizations. In my humble opinion, they’ve passed the buck. I get why they did it – there are millions of dollars of corporate fund raising at risk – the potential exists for those corporate entities, who do adhere to an anything goes, diversity, respect for every conceivable lifestyle, etc., to face scrutiny from their shareholders. It matters to them, so the Boy Scouts have passed the buck to get a buck. That’s pretty telling right there and I think if more parents understood that, they might very well pull their kids out of Scouts.

    The real question here is whether those organizations will change their values? Or be forced to change their values. I think some congregations will welcome all with and some will resist. Will they be forced to change? Who will force them? We then get into the whole thorny issue of separation of church and state. I don’t think anybody can force the churches in question to change their values. They can drag them through the mud, much as outside forces have to the Boy Scouts.

    I get that times change and values change. And society becomes more accepting of things that it might not have accepted in a different time.

    The bigger question in my mind is why are we talking about sexuality with a group whose membership largely contains 1st through 5th grade boys?

    I want my kids to be accepting of others. I also want my kids to be safe. And I want a say in what my children are taught and to what they are exposed. This is the first step, imho. First it will be “accept the gay & lesbian community”. Then it will be “a certain percentage of your leaders must be gay & lesbian”. Then it will be “this is an alternative lifestyle”. Then “accepted”, then “normal and usual and preferred”. I have a problem with that.

    And, believe it or not, Scouts do undress and change clothes in front of one another. Today the Scouts are required to have separate changing and showering facilities for adults, youth, and gender. Will we now have to have additional showering areas for gay and straight youth? Gay and straight adults? What about sleeping arrangements? Today we say that a youth cannot sleep in the tent of any adult other than his parent. While I would imagine that the vast majority of those that want to join under the auspices of being a gay adult rather than as a gay youth, what happens when a boy declares his homosexuality? I guarantee you that there will be issues with changing, bathing, and sleeping.

    Scouting serves boys from seven years old (first grade) through 18 years. There’s probably some older boys who will declare their sexuality. Do we really believe that the rest of the boys are mature enough to not comment or tease others about this issue? Sure, Scouting values teach Scouts to be respectful of all people. This has the potential to be a very divisive and hurtful experience for lots of people.

    Ultimately I could care less if somebody decides that they’d rather be with someone of the same sex. If they’re happy, great, I’m happy for them. I thing it wrong that somebody say “I’m going to hire, fire, promote, whatever because of your sexual orientation.” I’d have ZERO problems with “gays in Scouting” if everybody just kept their mouth shut about it. Why do we have to talk about sexuality in the Boy Scouts? Let’s all go do a good turn daily, live our lives the best that we can, and be as happy as we can.

    I am very concerned about the issue of grooming. I don’t equate homosexuals with pedophiles, but I do question the wisdom of introducing a male (adult or youth) who professes to like having sex with men into a group of young men and boys. Do I believe that that a male that has identified himself by his sexuality rather than himself as an individual would rather have sex with a 18, 17, 16, 15 year old than some 50 year old guy that he met in a bar? You bet I do. So… that’s the part that will get me labeled as a homophobe. Sorry, those are my thoughts both as a parent and as a man that was groomed and sexually abused by an older man when I was a 16 (not within the Scouting organization).

    We all know that there are LGBT members in the Boy Scouts today. Those members, though, don’t seem to feel the need to proclaim their lifestyle in the Scouting environment.

    • If current LGBT members in BSA don’t feel the need to proclaim their lifestyle in the Scouting environment, then why does BSA use the Scouting environment to proclaim that the LGBT lifestyle is immoral?

      All people ask is that BSA not talk about sexuality, period, and to leave those conversations up to each CO to have if they want to.

      We are trying to get discussion of sexual lifestyle out of Scouting, since BSA started proclaiming their views about sexual lifestyles 20 years ago.

      • So a parent of a Scout happens to have a same-sex partner at home. It would be considered unacceptable to let them into your troop because they obviously would be bringing their sexuality into Scouting. And we don’t want sexuality in Scouting.

        So then I guess I bring sexuality into Scouting all the time because I have a wife! By your logic, the only way to keep sexuality out of Scouting is to only allow celibate asexuals in the program.

        • Markus Harrild // February 6, 2013 at 8:22 pm //

          Marcus, that’s not the issue. The issue is that a private youth organization has the right to determine what their organization’s ideals and laws should be and the right to determine what is acceptable within their private organization, whether you or others agree with it or not.

          It’s interesting to me the amount of time and money that activist gays, lesbians, transgendered, and bisexuals have spent to force the BSA to abandon their rights, as a private organization, to establish and live their organization’s ideals.

          Don’t you think it would be more positive, productive, and inclusive of the gay, lesbian, transgendered, and bisexual (GLTB) activists to organize their own respective private youth organization for those who are searching for such a group?

          To me, it appears that the GLTB have squandered their money, efforts, and time for 20 years. It makes me wonder what their real agenda is to blatantly disregard an obvious solution to their supposed dilemma.

        • Yes, it is unacceptable in The Boy Scouts of America as it was built upon 103 years ago and, as we, a private organization know it today.

        • A Scout having married parents, or a Scout leader being married himself, is not the same as talking about sex in Scouting. I think that is pretty obvious.

      • Proof??????

      • Its their RIGHT AS A PRIVATE ORGANIZATION TO DO SO.

        • The debate isn’t that BSA can’t exclude gays. As a private organization they have the legal right to exclude whomever they want for whatever reasons they want. The debate is that the BSA shouldn’t exclude gays.

  39. DEstridge // February 6, 2013 at 2:32 pm //

    This debate is over the demise of the Traditional Family and when is enough, enough. With the demise of the Traditional Family comes the lack of moral character, promiscuity, and poverty, not to mention many other cultural issues. The Traditional Family has a core value system that may not be biblical but has many values that are. Similar to the 10 Commandments being from the bible, but regardless of where they came from are still statements of moral character. Yet the liberal lobby has repetitively tried to have them removed from the public square.

    #1 – Scout leaders are mentors for their Scouts. We should all expect our leaders to be of high moral character that model traditional family values. That translates to, refraining from leaders that are adulterers, drug addicts, drunkards, and homosexuals (note the list should be long). I know many drunkards that are great people, but that doesn’t mean that I want them mentoring Scouts.

    #2 – What would your stance be if a rogue religion believed it was fine to handle poisonous snakes. Do we allow that in Scouts? What if bestiality or pedophilia is acceptable amongst this rogue religion? Do we support them because that is what their God allows?

    The bible hasn’t changed in 2000 years. Liberal translations of the bible has. It is the liberal interpretation and their assault on Traditional Family values that has polarized this issue. The founder of MADD, Candice Lightner, left the organization because it was hijacked by extremist. Don’t let the BSA get hijacked!

    • When did BSA start allowing divorced adults, or single parents, to be Scout leaders? When did BSA stop modeling traditional family values?

      • DEstridge // February 7, 2013 at 7:37 am //

        Great point. The BSA hasn’t restricted leadership based on divorce or single parent status. I’m a little confused has to how you assume that a divorced or single parent doesn’t support the traditional family. I’m sure they went into marriage wanting to be divorced or widowed, or parenthood as single mom (please note sarcasm). If they are divorced or single I expect them to promote and model the core values of the traditional family, best they can. Homosexual relationships make it impossible for them to believably promote or model those values.

        • “I’m a little confused has to how you assume that a divorced or single parent doesn’t support the traditional family”

          Because, according to many people here, the traditional family is defined in the Bible. And the Bible clearly states that a traditional family is a man and a woman. In addition, the Bible clearly states that re-marriage after divorce is a sin.

          I fully respect their beliefs, and encourage them to not permit adults re-married after divorce into their troop. As long as they don’t impose the same rules on my troop. Specific criteria for membership can be established by each chartering organization, but they shouldn’t be imposed on the entire BSA nationwide.

    • DEstridge – We don’t allow bestiality, or pedophilia, or human sacrifice because they are illegal. A Scout has a duty to Country and to be “obedient” (which the Scout handbook defines with “A Scout is obedient. He obeys the laws of his community and country.”) Same reason we don’t let murders or drug dealers in Scouts.

      But being gay isn’t against the laws of this country… nor is it against the Scout law.

      • DEstridge // February 7, 2013 at 8:15 am //

        You’re absolutely right. The BSA shouldn’t support criminal acts. NEWS FLASH: Not all immoral behavior is criminal and they shouldn’t support them either. For over 100 years the BSA has defined the behavior that is expected in their Oath and Law. They have been consistent and good at how they’ve done it. Just because the liberal agenda has strengthened in this country and has moved the BSA up on their list doesn’t negate the integrity or the purpose that BSA has used as their foundation for the last century. You’re asking the BSA to redefine something that has already been defined and successful.

        By the way, not supporting criminal acts is discriminating against criminals. Discrimination isn’t always a bad thing.

  40. The BSA like all youth organizations must put the safety of the youth first. Inviting an openly homosexual man to care for other boys overnight and away from home is inviting trouble. A man who is sexually attracted to other men should not be put in a situation where he has many opportunities to be alone with a minor. For the homosexual man, the temptation and the possibility of a wrongful accusation is too great. As a normal male, I would not take a group of 16 and 17 year old girls on an overnight without their parents, regardless of the current protection plan guidelines, i.e. at least two adults, no adults sleeping in a tent with a child, at least two children in a tent together, etc.. The risk is too great and unnecessary for the adults and the children.
    Life is full of unfairness. I should be able to walk anywhere in the city of Chicago with no concern of violence, leave the keys in my car and my front door unlocked. I live in the real world not Disneyland.
    This issue has little to do with excluding homosexuality , but everything to do with teaching children that homosexual behavior is normal and acceptable. It is neither normal or acceptable. It is tolerated. Children should not be involved in ANY sexual behavior, nor encouraged to experiment. Sex is for adults and marriage. Sex has long term consequences that which children (and many adults) are ill-equipped.

    • BSA’s ban on gays is not a part of BSA’s youth protection policies. It is a part of BSA’s moral teaching policies.

      If you are right, then BSA should make banning gays a part of their youth protection program, where it belongs.

    • Albert J Weiscraft III // February 6, 2013 at 4:38 pm //

      If a troop sends their scouts out to sleep alone with a single individual (male,female,gay,straight) so as to allow clearly preditory actions to occur is more of a statement against the troop leaders.
      The BSA has clear guidelines about YPT and pediphiles, this is not up for change. A normal gay or straight male would not find young children sexually attractive. And would you not be able to control yourself during the night even if you were one-on-one with a young girl (non-scouting of course)? Gay does not mean they are predators anymore than hetero means to be a predator to a young girl.

      • A pedophile is not motivated by sexual attraction, anyway. I agree with your points.

      • Having an attraction to a 17 or 18 year old is not pedophilia.
        Sending two twenty year old male leaders out on an overnite with a group of 16 and 17 year old girl scouts would be ridiculous. The girls and young men are fully aware of the sexual tension, and the parents should have the wisdom to protect their children. There should be no sexual tension or attraction between the adults and youth, nor between the youth. Just like how girls only and boys only schools remove the distraction of sexual relationships from the day to day activities. A scout should not be concerned that his tent mate or his leader may be sexually attracted to him.

    • If a gay male leader is a threat to the male youth of Scouting, then a straight female leader must also be one…right? Let’s kick out all female leaders!!!

      And what about all the straight males in the co-ed Venturing program… we’re just asking for trouble with all those female youth.

    • Nancy Grossman // February 6, 2013 at 9:46 pm //

      OK–I have to say, I am a heterosexual middle-aged woman, and I am constantly going on camping trips and to summer camp with boys from 11 to 16 or 17 years old, and….BSA has said that that is OK. So why is the risk not “too great” in this instance?

      The difference, for those who have not caught on yet, is that I am not actually a pedophile, and I am not interested in any kind of relationship beyond the usual Scouter-Scout one with these boys. Which doesn’t mean that all of the appropriate youth-protection guidelines aren’t followed, because in our troop we follow them religiously. Whether someone is a pedophile or not has little to do with sexual orientation (just take some time to read the research if you disagree)—in fact, most pedophiles actually identify as straight, so a no-gays policy does little to keep them out. (Anybody follow the Scouting sex-abuse scandal of the last few months? These guys said they were straight, right?)

      I wouldn’t have a single qualm about having gay leaders take my son and our other Scouts camping. And I keep my eyes peeled for inappropriate activity no matter whom the kids are with: man, woman, gay, straight—even other teens.

  41. Albert J Weiscraft III // February 6, 2013 at 4:24 pm //

    I find it interesting when people start claiming that being gay is wrong just because the Bible says so. Why do you pick on this one particular point to be so literal? If you read the Bible, in addition to a few passages about gays, it clearly approves of slavery, stoning the perpetrator and victim of rape, forcing the rape victim to marry the perp, ritual human sacrifice, murder of weathermen, murder of adulterers, death for sex out of wedlock, death to non-virgin women, death to non-believers or those not of your religion, death for striking one’s parents, killing an entire town’s population because someone there worships another God, forced circumcision, and, best of all, death to those who work on the Sabbath (this is not just paid work, but even household chores!) My guess it that many of us have fallen afoul of one of these rules.

    If you are going to take any one part of the Bible absolutely literally, you need to do so with the entire text as there is no place where it says, “never mind, don’t pay attention to Exodus 3:12, Deuteronomy 22:23, or Judges 5:30), they were added by mistake”. So when you start taking the entire Bible literally, you must start viewing blacks as the slaves and don’t forget to grab a pile of stones and stand outside the local high school because there are surely a lot of people who, your literal Bible, declares as people that you should be stoned to death. Of course you wouldn’t do this because these rules are clearly wrong in today’s thinking. But they were previously used to justify slavery and justify murder and the punitive laws against women in other countries and religions that derive from the writings found in Exodus (at least in the extreme versions of these religions). So you now use these same measures to justify the discrimination of gays today. What difference is there between your views and those of certain regimes in the Middle East?

    Then many will declare themselves as “Christian”. This means you follow the teachings of Christ, or do you. Christ speaks of tolerance and acceptance of people different than yourself. Christ NEVER says anything at all against gays, nothing. I find this quite interesting that if this such a heinous condition, wouldn’t you think He’d address it? He even heals a dying servant who is gay! (Matthew 8:5, Luke 7-1). If Jesus can find it in His heart to heal someone who’s gay, maybe you can too. [And doesn’t this contradict the rules found in the OT?

    But please do not mistake homosexuality for pediphelia. The latter is NEVER acceptable. Start doing some critical thinking for yourself and stop letting others simply feed you your opinions. God gave you a brain, use it to clearly think about discrimination and if it is ever acceptable (in any instance not just this case).

    • Markus Harrild // February 6, 2013 at 8:33 pm //

      Come on Albert, we have civil laws that prohibit most of the acts you illustrated. Stick to the real issue. This has nothing to do with being Christian or non-Christian, or whatever your sexual orientation might be.
      It has to do with the rights of a private organization to determine their ideals and the requirements members are to follow while being members of their private organization.
      If individuals who have joined don’t like those ideals or requirements, they have the right to leave and join another private organization that holds ideals and requirements more to their liking.
      This isn’t about inclusiveness or sexual orientation, it is about the rights of a private youth organization to follow their ideals and rules of conduct. Anyone that makes it more than that has an agenda.

    • Nancy Grossman // February 6, 2013 at 9:12 pm //

      Thank you, Albert–excellent points, and some that I think of frequently whenever the “word of God” is cited. Turns out that Jesus himself is quoted as mentioning homosexuality exactly zero times in the Bible, and, one would think that he might get around to talking about it if he considered it such a grievous sin. Apparently homosexual rape is mentioned as a sin, as should be any kind of rape, homosexual or heterosexual. And, if we are all to take the Bible in literal terms (if we are even interpreting it correctly 2000 years after the fact, and not just interpreting it as if it were written yesterday), then Christians would share all possessions communally, redistribute landholdings every 50 years, never charge interest on any loan (any bankers in Scouting?), not blink at polygamy, etc. Clearly, thinking has evolved on many issues, except not….this one.

      If Scouting is so big on keeping out gays, how about going for the entire enchilada? How about screening for adulterers? I personally do not consider someone cheating on their spouse to be the all-time best role model for my son, but….nothing is said about this particular “sin.”

      Jesus, to my understanding, was huge on demonstrating love and compassion for the downtrodden and despised in society. In my humble opinion, it is hard to believe that he would approve of all the hating and excluding that goes on in his name.

    • Well said. But you’re going to have to provide proof on the weathermen point…..

    • The Bible, both old and new testament defines marriage as the union of man and woman. It also states that a man should not lie with a man as with a woman. Christ did say he came to fulfill the law not nullify it. The Bible does not condone slavery or rape. I don’t no what Bible you are reading but Mat 8:5 and Luke 7 does not mention a homosexual. Mat 8:5 does not mention a healing at all!. Jesus does command us to love one another, that we are not able to judge the heart, that we are to judge actions.

  42. CWgmpls my concern: the problems with this “new policy” is that BSA will leave without legal cover the small troops! BSA will take the money from big donors, but the small troops will be open to legal challenge to their local membership policy, and the smear campaigns. BSA should accept gays or not for all the organization, it’s wrong doing a membership policy by troops, sponsor organization or council. Example if a troops sponsor is the Mormon church they will have money and good lawyers for the legal battle, but if the troop sponsor is a small inner city school it will be legal trouble. The troop will be shoot down!!

    • If a troop is sponsored by a church or other organization that has some kind of teaching against homosexuality, they will have no problem. Any lawyer who tries to sue a church over its religious beliefs, including teaching about homosexuality, would be laughed out of the court room. It just won’t happen.

      Even if a troop is not sponsored by an anti-gay group, all they have to do is state that the troop, itself, teaches that homosexuality is immoral. A troop that teaches against homosexuality cannot be forced to admit gays. BSA proved that in the Supreme Court.

  43. What a damn mess.

  44. As a former scout, current Scoutmaster and former Assistant Scoutmaster for 10 plus years, son and nephew of Eagle Scouts, father of an Eagle Scout, father of a Life Scout for Life, father of a Life Scout close to Eagle and finally a father who can’t wait for his youngest son (who by the way is going to join BSA in March), I am appalled that this discussion has gone this far. BSA has stood for what is good and right with America for over 100 years. For the past decade BSA has withstood onslaught after onslaught from the liberal, politically correct crowd regarding homosexuals and their desire to infiltrate our fine organization. Am I naive enough to believe that there are no, nor have ever been any homosexuals in the BSA? Of course not. Am I so cold-hearted to deny a boy an opportunity to join BSA if his mother is a lesbian or father is a gay man. Of course not. Am I going to stand by and do nothing while the politically correct corporate entities and a small vocal minority dictate what BSA’s sexual orientation policy should be? OF COURSE NOT!
    BSA has never been and never will be about how much money X or Y corporation will donate to the program. BSA has been and hopefully always be about guiding boys into adulthood using morals that the majority of Americans still approve. In every poll on the subject I have seen, the highest percentage of people who want to see a change is 42%. That is nowhere close to even a simple majority.

    The vast majority of charter organizations in the BSA are Christian churches, Catholic churches, LDS churches and other conservative groups. If BSA national caves to the pressure and allows the sexual orientation restriction to be removed, how many of these organizations will pull their charters? I would venture to say most, if not all. Sure, some more corporations will stop sponsoring BSA if we stand fast. But that is a small price to pay for keeping our integrity that has stood the test of time for over 100 years. What is the use of corporate sponsorship, if there is nothing or no one left to sponsor? If BSA keeps our current policy, we may lose some corporate money. No big deal, BSA will survive. If BSA caves to the pressure of the minority and allows the sexual orientation policy to change, it will lose my support as a volunteer as well as my monetary support. I am confident that this would be the case with the vast majority of scouts, scouters and their fmilies. Will BSA survive a hit like this? More than likely not. It can’t because BSA is not about corporate sponsorship. It is about the scouts, scouters and all the other volunteers needed to make BSA run.

    By taking the easy way out and letting charter organizations “determine how to address this issue”, the BSA as an elite organization will cease to exist as we historically know it. This is not as I have heard it likened to, states rights. BSA national is the hub of the wheel of scouting. Everything runs through national, from Tiger through Eagle, national is involved. A strong national organization is why I can be at a gas station in Columbus, OH and a guy sees my Eagle Scouts license plates and asks if I know so and so from Camp Falling Rock. It turns out this guy was an Eagle Scout from Chile and the USA. Would that happen if we were not part of a strong national organization? More than likely, no.

    The eight or so years boys are in BSA are some of the most awkward years in a young man’s life. I am sure you remember eighth grade, I sure do.
    How can an organization that has a young man’s best interests in mind even consider allowing open homosexuals to become leaders? How can it even consider allowing open homosexuals to become members? I say this with all sincerity, if we change the policy regarding sexual orientation, we may as well change everything and allow 11-18 year old girls to join Boy Scout troops. You will never convince me that a openly homosexual boy should be allowed to bunk with a heterosexual boy, to be in the same shower house with a heterosexual boy. Just as you will never convince me that a boy and a girl should be allowed to do the same. You can not tell me with a straight (no pun intended) face that there are no potential problems in those situations. If there is the possibility that a boy and a girl could do something that is considered immoral and get into trouble, then what is to prevent two homosexual boys, or a homosexual and heterosexual boy from doing the same thing? Hormones are raging at these ages and if a boy is homosexual or heterosexual, hormones are not put on hold while they are at camp or attending meetings.

    I will conclude with this. People often mistakenly link “gay” rights with civil rights, this is wrong . The civil rights movement addressed issues that were truly discriminatory against a race of people. Blacks could not vote, they could not sit at the same lunch counter nor drink out of the same water fountain as whites. Homosexuals could, can and always will be able to do these things. Homosexuals are not discriminated against according to our country’s laws. They have the same right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness as the rest of us. A small vocal, radical minority are wanting more than the basic rights afforded to all all Americans. You see this with the attack on marriage, with the attack on churches, with the attack of every traditional institution in America. BSA has taken a strong stand and has stood fast against this onslaught. The Supreme Court of the United States of America has ruled that BSA policy is not discriminatory. BSA needs to continue to stand fast or it will not survive.

    Yours In Scouting,

    Kurt Lofton SM Troop 345, Ohio Valley District, Simon Kenton Council, BSA

    For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. Hebrews 4:12

    • Thank you so very much! VERY WELL SAID, every feeling we have that we couldn’t put into words. Thank you again, from my scout (heart) to yours!!!

      • Thank you. This really gets my goat. I actually have a couple of homosexual friends and I work in a liberal social service organization that has many homosexuals employed there. The vast majority don’t even care about this issue. But here are a very few that would love to see BSA go down in flames. They don’t care about inclusion only about their agenda.

    • Amen Brother.

  45. This is such good news, and the one they would have been better to have started with in the first place – that is, to take time to collect and consider input from all involved and allow the larger group (1,400+?) at the national council meeting to review a proposal and vote. This is fair, and just, and brave (they are going to take a lot of heat for “leaking” the possibility and then making the hard choice to bring the issue to the larger Scouting community). If all the concerns are voiced, and the corporate group decide to make this change, then it will be the represented voices of all Scouts.

    Would a change of this magnitude require a 2/3 vote or a simple majority? If it is a 51/49 vote would this risk splitting scouts?

  46. Baden Powell is the influence of all religous values in Scouting. There have been many who have tried to say the BSA should not be involved in religion. Under the long time and present values that all scouter’s have embraced since its beginings we have all excepted the direction that the National Boy Scouts have done for the youth of America and without a moral compass that is the core of the BSA it would be a recipe for failure. The fact that 70% of all BSA Charters are Church based and the reason for so many Church Charters is both Church and BSA youth programs compliment each other. I believe that the BSA must keep its policies the way they are. Sincerely, Trenton Spears

  47. Carl Hoffman // February 6, 2013 at 7:49 pm //

    Wayne Perry, Chairman, BSA: I have been a volunteer grant writer and fund raiser for the Lighthouse District, Gulf Stream Council, Florida for approximately 2 years. If you give in to the pressures of this small minority, they will eventually own you. Ask yourself why would someone of an effeminate nature want to go through the rigors of Scouting? Only one answer, Perry, they want you to accept and embrace their life style and it sickens me to think that you would cave in just for the money. The Scouts are going to have more Jerry Sandusky’s to fend off than you can count.

    Next, it will be that they are offended by the Pledge of Allegiance in that it has “Under God” in its body, that we ground our Scouts in religious beliefs, that we mentor them in moral conduct, respect, responsibility, etc. Everything that is alien to the liberal will be under attack.

    I am looking forward to this weekend the American Legion (I am a Member) is hosting the 2nd annual American Legion/BSA Cracker Trail Camporee at Tanah Keeta and I look forward to seeing boys be boys, without a cell phone or I-Pad in sight. Kids pulling cracker trial wagons, living in tents, competing in 15 skill sets including Americanism, guarding and presenting the Flag, rifle, shotgun, archery, first aid, compass reading, etc.

    Go Gay, it will be my last event and I will resign from the FOS Committee and the American Legion Cracker Trail Committee. It’s not all about money; it’s about the future leaders of America. Stand firm and gain respect, if you give in Scouting will change forever; look what they’re doing to our Country.

    C Hoffman
    Boynton Beach Florida

    • Nancy Grossman // February 6, 2013 at 9:25 pm //

      Not a small minority–more and more and more Americans have looked into their hearts and chosen to support the rights of our brethren to live lives free of discrimination and hatred. And–you can’t really pretend that an anti-gay policy isn’t hateful. And equating homosexuality with pedophilia is misinformed, to put it mildly. Most pedophiles actually identify as straight and not gay. The issue of youth protection is different than the issue of sexuality, and one which troops always need to take seriously.

      Sorry, Carl, if we lose your service over this issue, but it is high time that the BSA stand up for what is right–in my mind, to respect and honor all of our fellow citizens, not just the straight ones. Since when did it become OK to teach our boys that discrimination is cool?

  48. BSA is an exclusive private organization which promotes those values regarded as most popular, appropriate, and productive among its administrators and existing members, based upon its record of past success. This popular opinion becomes the ethos or morality of the organization and we have, for the history of the organization, felt that these values are in alignment with the values of the American people.

    The Boy Scouts of America cannot be expected to make policy in conflict with its mission and values. In keeping with the values of the Scout Oath, homosexuality is not in keeping with “morally straight,” but not for the reasons many may think. An action or belief that is moral is one that is prudent and “for the good of the many,” if practiced by everyone. Since total homosexuality would ultimately cause the demise of our species within one human lifespan it can scarce be considered to be for the good of the many …and by this yardstick must be regarded as immoral. Traditional heterosexual practices which perpetuate our species would be deserving of regard as “moral.”

    Some arguments for inclusion of homosexuals is as follows:
    Homosexuality does occur in nature, thus it could be argued that homosexuality is natural. Deformities, blindness, cannibalism, and infanticide also occur in nature – and are natural. What’s your point?

    We teach our Scouts to embrace diversity, yet we exclude gays. Sounds unfair for a split second …but wait!! We don’t include girls, either! If we are going to include gays who may have a sexual interest in their tentmate, then we better allow girls – and they better be allowed to tent with the boys. Is this not acceptable to you? Then where do you draw YOUR line for what is fair or inclusive. Why would gay rights be more important than girls’ rights? They aren’t – and never will be. Girls have wanted to join forever!! …And then we need to be realistic about separate accommodations and related privacy issues at every camp out and activity from the “inclusion” day, onward.

    Scouting believes that same-sex attraction AND opposite sex attraction should be discussed outside of its program with parents, caregivers, or spiritual advisers, at the appropriate time and in the right setting. Leaders or Scouts that proclaim their sexuality are drawing unnecessary and unwanted attention to an issue which has no place in the activities of our boys. More importantly, why would an 11 year old boy know he’s gay, anyway? That seems inappropriately odd.

    If someone does not agree with the values and policies of the Boy Scouts of America… simply don’t join!! It is not for everyone, nor did it ever pretend to be so. Here is where the misconceptions and hurt begin. You don’t buy a house downwind of a farm and then complain about the country aromas, unless you are a bit of an idiot or a trouble-maker.

    The ultimate truth is this: A boy and his parents must make appropriate choices by researching the mission and policies of whatever organization the boy is considering joining. If we are going to change the organization to include and embrace one sexual exception, then girls had better be included in that change, lest we relegate their wishes to a status of less importance than the gay boys that they so dramatically outnumber.

    • Markus Harrild // February 6, 2013 at 10:45 pm //

      JR:
      I appreciated your treatise; well written.

    • “Scouting believes that same-sex attraction AND opposite sex attraction should be discussed outside of its program with parents, caregivers, or spiritual advisers, ”

      BSA told the supreme court that they “teach that homosexual conduct is not morally straight”. Who’s right? Does BSA teach about homosexuality in its program, or not?

      • As a Scoutmaster, I don’t teach about homosexuality or heterosexuality. I guide my scouts to lead each other in the variety of activities that BSA offers. Quit trying to insert words to try to prove your point.

        • Those aren’t my words. Those are BSA’s words. You may not teach about sexuality, but BSA says they do. Are you saying BSA is wrong?

        • cwg please show me those words. Provide a link please. Thanks.

        • Just google “homosexual conduct is not morally straight”. You’ll get about 11,000 links. Choose whichever one you want.

      • It isn’t my place as a scout leader to teach the children about homosexuality; they don’t come to the meetings to do that…We learn about scout skills, dutiful citizenship, leadership and other lessons already provided in the scouting program… Scouting is actually nothing about homosexuality because it isn’t an issue; its truly insignificant in proportion to its actual size as an issue… Wouldn’t care what homosexuals did as long as the aggressive militant homosexuals weren’t attacking me… But they are and why would the majority of scouters allow a tiny minority of individuals to terrorize us into being obedient to their demands??? I don’t think I’ll choose to allow militant homosexuals and the leftist media to dictate my culture to me; why would I, its wrongful.. I understand God’s Word well enough to figure it out for myself…

  49. Nancy, it is not an anti-gay policy, it is a policy to protect our youth. The majority of scouts, scout families and scouters don’t want the policy changed. And yes, it is a minority of very vocal, homosexual bigots who want to break down every traditional American value. They won’t stop until they have done it.

    • Nancy Grossman // February 6, 2013 at 10:24 pm //

      johnnyrat–I respectfully disagree–CBS News and Gallup (and maybe others, but that’s as far as my research went at this late hour) say that 51% of Americans support gay marriage, and, while polls are not necessarily 100% accurate and results can be interpreted in many ways–I read from these numbers that a growing number of Americans are choosing to accept gays as part of society. I am not reading in these and other on-line forums on this topic anything written by someone I would consider a (ouch! What happened to respectful speech?) “homosexual bigot”–in fact, I am not sure anyone who is writing in is gay–there are no gays in Scouting, right?

      I do hear people speaking up who think Scouting should stand for respect and acceptance. For myself, I have gay and lesbian friends and neighbors and family members, none of who are in Scouting (or, frankly, could even stand the thought of their kids joining such a discriminatory organization). I speak up about the issue because I feel it is wrong, and because suicide and attempted-suicide rates among gay youth are at astronomical levels (like: somewhere between 28 and 40% of all gay youth attempt suicide at some point). No one can say that exclusionary form-your-own-groups-and-stay-out-of-ours policies don’t contribute to the suffering and discrimination that gay kids already go through. What if one of these kids was our kid, or a member of our extended family? I hope that any of us would put aside our own assumptions and walk through fire to do whatever it takes to help them–including speaking up endlessly when these issues are raised.

      And, instead of taking a leadership position on this significant threat to the lives of children, the Boy Scouts has chosen to rub salt in the wound by bending the interpretation of “morally straight” to the latter-20th-century’s connotation of the word “straight.”

      I would like to see the BSA have the moral courage to say that we will not tolerate any threats to children’s health and welfare. Imagining that we can teach our boys not to discriminate, while at the same time excluding gay kids and adults as somehow not good enough or because of some kind of perceived threat to our youth, is ludicrous in the extreme.

      • I truly am sorry that you feel this way about the BSA. But, if this is truly the way you feel and you don’t like the way BSA runs its private organization, then you are welcome to leave. BSA is a last bastion of strength, standing for what is good, moral and right with America. You point out suicide rates for gay teenagers. Okay, I am sorry that these teens have taken their lives. By the way, murder is murder, whether you murder an unborn baby, another person or yourself. But it is not BSA’s duty nor should it be to prevent gay teens from killing themselves. You have been sucked into this debate by the liberal media, the homosexual bigots, (who demand tolerance and acceptance, but don’t practice what they preach).
        I hope that BSA will stand and carry on. But if they cave and it all falls apart, so be it. Then the bigots will have won and may youth will have ha a great dis-service done to them.

        • And if the scouting spirit is real then a new scouting movement will rise up out of the ashes and there will be like minded Godly people forming similar units with the same spirit of scouting as ever before. It isn’t about the BSA completely; at one time there wasn’t a BSA. It’s about a Holy Spirit that has a desire to follow God’s will and that will never change because God’s truths will never change. So if the aggressive militant homosexuals cause the leaders of the BSA to sell us out then we can walk away from the BSA and re-establish a new organization where parents and their sons have an option to participate. The militant homosexuals may not have the courage to create their own youth organization but the members of the BSA will have the courage to start a new organization because its not about selfish political and social accolades; its a spirit of wanting to provide a wholesome environment for boys to simply grow up without being battered with all the social and political bullshit militant homosexuals think they have to try to pound into their heads. The boys don’t want the bullshit. They want to be scouts and follow all the good and Godly things scouting stands for. pretty simple. That’s what its really all about. The spirit will live even if the name is changed; we don’t have to be called the Boy Scouts of America to fulfill our mission. The BSA doesn’t have a patent on: Trustworthy, Loyal, Helpful, Friendly, Courteous, Kind, Obedient, Cheerful, Thrifty, Brave, Clean, and Reverent; these are Godly virtues… Maybe we just need to “Be Prepared” to courageously make a change…

      • Markus Harrild // February 7, 2013 at 12:06 am //

        Hi Nancy:

        I appreciate your passion and defense of youth and those of differing lifestyles. That is a commendable trait. As an ex-police officer I have seen much of what you shared with us.

        The relative nature of morality and what was considered by most individuals in this nation to be morally acceptable to our society has changed from the 1950′s to 2013. Does that mean we accept amoral behavior? From statistics, 50-51% of our population think the moral standards of this nation are socially acceptable. Does that mean they are right?
        Does that mean that those gays, lesbians, transgendered, bisexuals, pedophiles, and their supporters, have the right to tear down a wholesome and positive private youth organization as the BSA because they don’t agree with their membership policies?

        The truth is that for 20 plus years the gay, lesbian, transgendered, bisexual, pedophile activists and their supporters have been forcefully assaulting the BSA and other private organizations like it, to acculturate their ideals and beliefs into the fabric of the Scouting ideals and policies. By tearing down this iconic private institution, the gay, lesbian, transgendered, bisexual, pedophiles, and their supporters make themselves more socially accepted within our culture. That is the agenda of gay, lesbian, transgendered, bisexual, pedophiles and their supporters. I know, I have talked with many of them about it. My great uncle and a foster brother of mine were and are homosexual.

        I, too, am saddened by the suicide rate among our country’s youth. The “experts” give us many reasons for these pejorative results, especially for young men. The BSA has been a great tool for lifting boys, young men and young women. It teaches them the importance of hard work in order to accomplish a worthy goal. It also builds confidence and self-esteem. When they have good adult leaders, the youth are trained in leadership skills, learn to trust others, develop their faith in God, give service to others in need, run their own programs, learn what it means to be reliable, and are able to look outside of themselves.

        Nancy, the issue is not about discrimination or sexual orientation, it is about the right a private youth organization has to determine its own ideals and to define their own private membership policies. This is an inherent right ALL private organizations possess. If individuals do not agree with the ideals and membership policies, those individuals have the right to disassociate themselves from that organization, or find another private organization to their liking, or establish their own private youth organization with the ideals they desire. Isn’t it great that we can do that in this country?

        Does the BSA, as a private youth organization, have the right to determine their ideals, methods and membership policies? YES!
        Do all other individuals have to agree with those ideals, methods and membership policies? NO! That is their right.
        Do individuals who become members of the BSA have to espouse its ideals, methods, and adhere to its membership policies? YES!
        If members are dissatisfied with the ideals and membership policies of a private youth organization must they stay in the organization? NO!
        ALL private organizations hold the right to set governing policies for membership.

        The issue is not about discrimination or sexual orientation, it is about the systematic dismantling of a positive, life-changing, private youth organization for the social acceptance and acculturation of gay, lesbian, transgendered, bisexual, pedophile activists and their supporters. These activists would force a private youth organization, that has a legal right to determine their organization’s ideals and membership policies, to follow their activist ideals and membership policies. You talk about fairness, openness, discrimination, and making a choice – is what these activists are doing to the BSA fair? Aren’t the activists discriminating against a private youth organization that has a legal right to establish their organizations guiding parameters?

        If these activist individuals were truly concerned about this issue, there would be a private gay, lesbian, transgendered, bisexual, pedophile private youth organization in every city of this nation, lead by a gay, lesbian, transgendered, or bisexual adult leader. Wouldn’t their money and time be better used in that positive endeavor? That is not their agenda.

        I hope you are able to discern the real issue of this question and not muddle it with other concerns that do not apply.

        • YES! Truths never change.. our nation’s youth need the Boy Scouts of America as it stands.. if you think their’s a demand for a similar organization in the homosexual community then build your own.. parents will vote with where they register their child and themselves.. it’ll be American Capitalism in practice.. are you fearful of the outcome and what the truth would reveal? or is it truly to hijack the BSA to serve a more selfish and self serving political and social agenda??

        • Markus – No one is suggesting that pedophiles be allowed to be part of the BSA. On this, we can all firmly agree.
          The proposed policy does not mention transgendered people – that is a different discussion altogether.

    • In my area of the country, the majority of heterosexual scouting families want the policy changed. We have gay friends at school, in the workplace, in sports, on our neighborhoods, and in our churches. While there are vocal minorities on both sides, it seems reasonable that an individual scout troop should be able to determine which members meet its CO’s views on “morally straight” and which don’t, based on the values of their CO and their community. I think we can trust individual scout troops to take this responsibility seriously, and do the right thing.

      • EMom You are falling into the same pool as the rest of the folk who want the policy changed. You say that “the majority of heterosexual scouting families want the policy changed”. Come on, how can you even say that with a straight (no pun intended) face? The majority? Have you done exhaustive research to back up this claim?

        Truth be told, I think that most of the scouts, scouters and other volunteers don’t want the policy changed.

        You also proudly point out that you have “gay friends” at school, at work, in sports, in your neighborhood, in church. So what, You and others like you claim that homosexuals are not in this fight to proclaim their sexuality, but you go ahead and celebrate it. Curious.

        • Maybe all registered members as of January 1, 2013 should be permitted to vote on this issue. It is truly a life and death issue for the BSA. Yes it is a big deal to Godly members registered in the BSA. Not everyone has to understand that but if your not a member then it doesn’t matter if you understand or not because its simply none of your business what our private organization does.

        • Johnnyrat78 -
          I said the majority of scouting families IN MY AREA want the policy changed. I fully understand that in other areas of the country it may be different. On this issue, there are clear red state / blue state differences. I also know that individual COs and their troops may differ from each other. The nice thing about the proposed policy is that it takes this into account. Troops and their COs can follow their conscience and their religious beliefs to decide how they want to structure their membership policy. If it’s true that the vast majority of scouts and scouters don’t want this policy, then very little will change. Their troops can keep things the way they are. In areas like mine, some troops may change their policies, but not all. Families can find the troop that best fits their family values.

      • Did you have an election.. How do you justify saying the majority of heterosexual scouting families want the policy changed? I personally don’t believe your statement to be true.. homosexuality is a very small percentage of the population. Your speaking for one small group. What about the other groups in your area that don’t want the policy changed; don’t they get a voice too; its their organization too? Its wrong to hijack the organization as it is away from them too… Why do you think you can trust individual scout troops to do the right thing if their being run by an aggressive militant homosexual pair of leaders? Isn’t that what might happen? Yes it is…

        • Wallace, the proposed policy allows different troops to have different membership policies, to reflect their CO’s beliefs and values. And because of this, scouts and their families can “vote with their feet” by joining the local troop that best reflects their values. If a particular family doesn’t care for the membership policy or the leadership of one troop, they can join another. If they can’t find one that suits their needs, they can start one. If the vast majority of scouting families prefer a troop with a “no gays” membership policy, then those troops will thrive, and there will be little if any change to the status quo.

          If a troop is run by “an aggressive militant homosexual pair of leaders”, I think it’s safe to say that few if any scouts will join this troop, and without scouts you don’t have a troop.

          The nice thing about this policy is that it allows troops in different parts of the country reflect the desires of local scouting families. There would be no need for anyone to join a troop whose membership policy they do not agree with.

  50. Less than 1/3 of Americans support the BSA’s policy. This is the Boy Scouts of AMERICA… should they reflect the values of the country they are serving?

    Date Source: http://www.dallasvoice.com/poll-finds-majority-nations-voters-support-bsas-gay-ban-10138617.html

    • Marcus, do you have an agenda? It sure seems as if you do. You have touted your gay aunts, your gay friend. So what! Stop already, we understand that you are another white guilt liberal, although now your cause is helping the poor, persecuted homosexuals. We get it.

      • Well as an Eagle Scout, I’ve pledge to “help other people at all times!”

        • What is really amusing about all this. Re: your 1/3 of Americans support of BSA policy. Is that many Americans don’t care what goes on with the BSA. It is a private organization, so most Americans can’t speak for it.

          Again, if you are so upset with the current policy, are so offended that a private organization you are a member of is discriminatory, then give back your Eagle medal. Be like the over 100 Eagles who have done this. It is America, you still have that right.

        • The KKK is a private organization, and most Americans aren’t members… but many American’s have opinions on them and their policies and practices. While being a private organization, they are in the public eye and they set an example, a tone, and send a message to those not in the organization.

        • Marcus, so now BSA = KKK? What a jump. Interesting that you are still a member.

        • No, I’m not saying the BSA is the KKK… However the KKK is a private organization and I am not a part of it; however I still care what they’re doing and the attitudes that they’re projecting on our country. Likewise there are people who are not members of the BSA who also care about the actions and attitudes of the BSA.

          The BSA may be a private organization, but they have a huge public image and influence. That affects all members of the Scouting community… members or not.

        • Marcus, here are your words: “No, I’m not saying the BSA is the KKK… However the KKK is a private organization and I am not a part of it; however I still care what they’re doing and the attitudes that they’re projecting on our country. Likewise there are people who are not members of the BSA who also care about the actions and attitudes of the BSA.

          The BSA may be a private organization, but they have a huge public image and influence. That affects all members of the Scouting community… members or not.

          You are so worked up over this that you don’t know what you are typing. “That affects all members of the Scouting community… members or not”.

          Again, if you don’t like it, if you are so ashamed of us neanderthals who want to keep BSA in the dark ages. Please give back your Eagle Medal and leave the organization. Be like the 100+ Eagles who have done the same.

    • Statistics are so deceptive.. That’s not a truth… Allow all members of the BSA to vote on this issue and there will be the only statistic that should count.. We are a private organization and what we choose to do freely is all that matters.. This is our right as an private free organization in the United States of America with our free rights protected under the US Constitution and upheld by the US Supreme Court.. Rights our troops defend and have defended every minute of every day since this Nation was founded..

      • Just because the BSA legally can exclude gays doesn’t mean they should.

        And I agree we should respect the rights our troops (which now include gay service men) defend and have defended every minute of every day since this Nation was founded. We’ll let a gay man risk his life to defend our freedoms and liberties… but we won’t let him serve as a Scout leader? What a shame.

        • @Dan Duley – If this is your concern, what about the lesbian girls? Why must they be excluded?

        • That’s exactly the tactic aggressive militant homosexuals are using Marcus; you hit the nail right on the head?.. Try to get as many organizations that didn’t accept homosexual behavior as acceptable behavior and then use their acceptance against everyone else that feels homosexual behavior is sinful and wrongful… But 2 wrongs really don’t make a right in this case.. The way a heterosexual man or woman feels about homosexual behavior will never change and it will always be repulsive behavior to heterosexuals.. That’s just a fact.. And the Boy Scouts of America have no obligation to accept homosexuals, atheists, or agnostics just because any or everyone else does.. I hope the BSA stands its ground and does what the majority of the paid members want which is to keep the membership criteria the same.. The majority do have the power to make or break our organization and I believe the power lies in the Godly Christian organizations that charter the packs and troops.. It’s not loosing all those charters to save a few that choose to accept a membership policy that would allow homosexuals, atheists and agnostics to join… The majority won’t stay quiet on the issue for ever.. They will react with the true strength they truly have if the BSA chooses to go against their will.. The vast majority of Americans still say they are Christians and that hasn’t changed just because someone wishes it would…

        • http://blog.libertyinstitute.org/2013/02/the-boy-scouts-threat-to-religious.html

          Happy reading.

    • The American public doesn’t get a vote on this issue.. This isn’t a political issue.. This is a private organization free to operate in any legal way they choose to operate to fulfill their mission. It’s worked for 103 years to today so why would they choose to break something that isn’t broken.. Changing this policy will open so many cans of worms it’ll be a disaster.. and the aggressive militant homosexuals with a liberal mass media to amplify their cause will be successful in having destroyed the BSA to serve their selfish purpose.. But if the BSA stands strong in their convictions then I can’t wait to see the divine ways all of it will work out in the end.. Gotta stay true to your heart and if the BSA stays true to the hearts of the paid membership they will not change their policy.. In time the homosexuals, atheists and agnostics will just come to realize that the BSA is built on a rock and is simply as untouchable as the Bible and the Word’s God shares with all of us…

  51. Nancy Grossman // February 6, 2013 at 10:35 pm //

    And…seems to me that the military hasn’t disintegrated with the demise of “don’t ask, don’t tell,” nor have states that have legalized gay marriage fallen into abject ruin, either. Could be that the BSA joins the 21st-century on this issue and lives to tell the tale. After all, many other Scouting organizations, from the Girl Scouts to Boy Scouts in other countries, don’t discriminate and seem to do just fine.

    • Give it time. Beside the military hardly has a Morality plank in its bylaws. actually it does have a sodomy rule in the UCMJ. guess they can change that. Rome did not fall in a day. When your morals decline so will whatever is built on top of it. As for BSA, it will not live to tell anything if the Ban is dropped. I guess that is really the agenda here anyway. Hardly see a lot of gay folks beating down the doors to help in scouting. They are simply activist trying to normalize what is abnormal. Just like woman in combat and open gays in the military. Once all the bricks are pulled out the wall will come down. For the record I am not a hater just a moral realist who is tired of having all this stuffed down my throat

      • Amen. You’re right about Rome. The US taking the same path. I’m a volunteer for Scouting. Have been for years. It is hard to get participation and support from parents. I believe you’re right about just any bastion for activists to infiltrate and make less effective. If they change the policy, I will leave the organization and so will my grandsons. This is based on religious beliefs. I still have that freedom, don’t I?

        • Betty, here’s the conundrum. My religion, church, and chartered organization believe this is a social justice question, and that it’s about equality and human dignity.

          You appear to be saying that your religion and church feel that this is a sin and shouldn’t be allowed.

          So, what do we do? The proposed policy change would allow each of us to run our unit according to our beliefs. Not changing the policy is tantamount to telling our church that your religious beliefs take precedence over ours.

          The proposed change does. not. effect. you. Period. Continue to run your unit the way you want. It does allow others to approach scouting in a more open and affirming way.

          If your religious beliefs say that nobody else should be allowed to run their scouting units according to their beliefs, and that you’ll leave if it’s allowed, then you’re basically endorsing a theocracy or “christian sharia law”. You are treading on the BSA’s policy of religious freedom.

        • Here is alternative voice on the subject you have raised
          http://blog.libertyinstitute.org/2013/02/the-boy-scouts-threat-to-religious.html

        • Andrew, that’s a very interesting perspective. It’s easy to discount it, given the source (they make a living suing people who disagree with their interpretation of religious freedom).

          It seems clear that religious organizations are free to select their members and officers. Otherwise there would be rampant litigation to force the Catholic church to ordain female priests. You can’t force a Presbyterian church to elect a Lutheran to their committees.

          So for religious chartered organizations, I’d call this Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt. Similarly for Fraternal organizations. I couldn’t expect to sue the VFW and be admitted as an officer because I once visited Germany in the 80′s.

          Community organizations, like a School or Volunteer Fire Dept, might have an issue here.

          However, if that’s the basis for continuing to discriminate (there, I used the word) against an entire class of people … then I won’t lose any sleep over it.

      • “Hardly see a lot of gay folks beating down the doors to help in scouting…” Hmm. Could this be explained, perhaps, by the fact that they are banned by BSA from “helping”? Think about it. Or just think.

    • ronwfox@aol.com // February 8, 2013 at 2:02 pm //

      Nancy, let me tell you what’s going to happen here. A 13-year old gay kid is going to make the foolish decision to make sexual advances towards his tent mate. Don’t tell me that’s not going to happen – it happened to me when I was 15. And it’s the very hallmark of children to make foolish decisions. Heck, people twice and 3 times that age make foolish decisions regarding making sexual advances.

      His tent mate is revulsed by his up-to-then buddy’s advances. One would hope he would react by saying “Sorry, I’m not interested.” But then again, he’s a kid too. Perhaps he himself is on the fence about his sexuality and is insecure. “Oh my God, everyone thinks I’m gay!” And he reacts by stabbing his tentmate.

      Don’t think this will happen? If so, your experiences with children must be very limited. I’ve seen kids react extremely disproportionately towards an insult, a threat or a slight. I’ve seen a knife involved. With as many Scouts as there are in the BSA this is bound to happen. And then I will have to call that child’s parents, while the people pressing for this change will accept no responsibility for forcing the situation that resulted in this.

      • Lets say your scenario plays out… How would the current ban prevent this? If a kid has been in scouts since he was six (as a tiger cub) and he starts to think maybe he’s gay when he’s 13… He would already be in scouts. The ban would not have kicked him out at this age.

  52. A question or two for all you heterosexual men and women who think that it will be just fine if BSA caves and changes its sexual orientation policy.

    Men, can you honestly tell me that you never look at a woman and think, wow! That you never glance at the female lifeguard at summer camp? That you don’t notice that attractive ASM on the trail with her troop? If you can honestly say no, then I commend you.

    If you have to say yes, then you are in a pickle. Because how can a homosexual man or boy honestly say that he would not do the same at the pool, the volleyball court, the shower house, or anywhere else at camp? As I said in my first post, hormones are raging at the 11-18 yr. old level be they gay or straight.

    So if the homosexual only wants to be a leader and or join the troop and has no real agenda; what are we going to do when a straight man feels uncomfortable about being in the same shower house as the gay man? Do we blow off the concerns of the straight man just to appease the homosexual? Please tell me.

    • Pedophilia is not motivated by healthy sexual attraction. Most pedophilia is committed by heterosexual men. BSA has extensive youth protection policies in place to prevent pedophile attacks, non of which have anything to do with homosexuality.

      • Are you promoting pedophilia now and trying to justify another form of sex sin to promote homosexuality. In the scouts if anyone is found to be a pedophil they can no longer participate in the scouting program. We have strick laws in America to punish sex offenders, we don’t allow them around our children. In fact sex offenders can’t even get a job working with children. Why then would the boy scouts promote and encourage people who have unusual sex lives to participate in activities with their children. honorable men a women will leave scouting if homosexuals are allowed to be leaders in the BSA no doubt about it.

        • Are you for real? One does not mean another! Just because you are a homosexual, does not mean you are a pedophile just like being black make you a rapist.

      • Total BS. Pedophiles who go after young boys yet maintain a relationship with woman are NOT heterosexuals. They are, by definition, bisexuals .

        The uncomfortable fact that the homosexual community will not face is that such homosexuals simply prefer boys rather than other men.

        • Pedophiles are, by definition, rapists. Which has nothing to do with their sexuality. Any more than murder has anything to do with hunting. They are using a normally healthy action to commit an act of violence. Equating sexuality with rape is as ridiculous as equating hunting with murder or equating contact sports with assault. One is normal human behavior, the other is an act of violence. Pedophilia is violent rape, not a form of sexuality.

      • Better show proof of that unsubstantiated statement.. pedohilia is committed by pedofiles; their in a class all by themselves.. Why would you say they are heterosexual.. heterosexuality is a normal sexuality; Godly in design.. a sexual attration to children is sinful and that’s why the term pedophile was created; to designate that behavior from heterosexuality which is normal sexual behavior serving a true Godly purpose…

        • While most victims of pedophilia are boys, 95% of known pedophiles are heterosexuals. http://www.crisisconnectioninc.org/sexualassault/pedophilia_and_molestation.htm

  53. I don’t understand why this issue is so hard to decide. My boys have been involved in scouting since 2004. One is a Eagle scout the other just needs to complete his Eagle project. In all the years my family has been involved in scouting I have never come across a situation that involved sex. If someone has a skill to teach them who cares if that person is heterosexual or homosexual.

    • candy… are you ok with with your son being approached by an 18 year old gay scout and having his privates grabbed. I have had a gay man grab me before – it is in their nature… attraction to the same sex. I’m not saying every gay scout will do that but it will happen. You ok with your son being grabbed by a gay scout in the shower?

      • People need to get a grip // February 7, 2013 at 2:59 pm //

        You, sir, are completely ridiculous and utterly absurd.

        • He’s just sharing part of the worst case scenarios that are going to happen.. first time a homosexual leader attacks a boy, and its going to be “i told you so” by everyone that opposes a change now. then what??? gotta think ahead about these scenarios.. then the BSA will be bad for having changes their rules that allowd this to happen to a young boy… Yes it will happen

        • Here locally they shut down a rest stop because of it. Turned it back to grass.

          A local DNR property was so bad they brought in game wardens from throughout the state to run a net to put a stop to it. Dozens were arrested. Even the employees were afraid to walk into the restrooms alone because they were being solicited along with the kids. These are facts confirmed by the courts, law enforcement, newspapers, etc..

          Some would never think to do this but others obviously do and that is where the issue is.

        • People need to get a grip // February 10, 2013 at 11:58 am //

          Walla e, if you insist on pointing out situations that “are going to happen” with homosexual leaders, I have two words for you: Catholic Church. Or how about two more: Penn State. All actions were committed by self proclaimed straight men.

          The BSA would indeed be “bad” if they too chose to cover up incidents of molestation and abuse for decades. Not for simply being a decent organization that chose to encourage and accept people for who they are.

        • Thanks; you proved my point “Join the conversation”.. When a known homosexual eventually does attack and gets caught raping or molesting a scout the media is going to destroy the BSA for having changed their policy and having gone against their best instincts which have obviously always been to not accept sexually active and known homosexuals, atheists, or agnostics into the ranks.. If I was building a Godly youth organization I’d do the same too.. I’d imagine how I’d want the organization if my children or grandchildren were involved in it… It would be a fundamental cornerstone.. You obviously are very weak in your understanding of the Catholic Church and Penn State.. There was one man covicted at Penn State and the media persecuted the entire university along with some top notch quality men including Joe Paterno.. But weak minded people chose to believe the worst case and implicated the entire university including the football teams historic victories;;;; amazing.. I think you’ve proved my point though.. Thanks!!!

        • I’ll speak to Penn State & the BSA policy.. I’m an Eagle Scout, A BSA Leader, a Penn State Alumni and I personally knew Joe Paterno when I lived in State College; he was my neighbor.. He was a good man.. A man I would have let my son spend time with anytime.. If you think he actually knew what was going on and did nothing your either very ignorant of the situation or simply wrongful in your understanding of the man… He’s the kind of man I would hope and pray my Eagle Scout son would grow to become…

        • If you don’t insist on looking ahead and trying to point to situations that will happen if the BSA changes their membership policy then what kind of a scout are you; or are you.. I’m an Eagle Scout and a leader.. I was taught by the program to “Be Prepared”. That motto is all about looking ahead and planning for what might happen.. It sure doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see into the crystal ball on this one.. My 10 year old could see the writing on this wall.. And I’m being kind.. If you really want to think of the worst case scenario I’d have to really dig in my heels and struggle to come up with it.. Some of the most horific situations are very difficult for a man to think about when he has two children of his own that he loves dearly.. Any loving and decent parent would understand exactly what I’m talking about.. Imagining harmful things happening to your children is very very difficult as a parent..

        • People need to get a grip // February 12, 2013 at 6:55 am //

          What I see in so many of the words on this blog is fear, hatred, and ignorance which is being taught to your children. I can not understand how homosexuality is treated as such a perversion, that in your minds they have become likely child molesters–that’s where your understanding is weak.

        • to Godly people who choose to accept Gods Word as the Way to live a Godly life homosexuality is an abomination to God’s creation and to the temole He created to place His Holy Spirit to those who choose to accept His Spirit into their hearts.. there’s no hate there.. God gave all of us a way to overcome our sinful natures and grow in a relationship to Him; its a one on one relationship.. for a Christian Jesus came to forgive sinners, all of us in our own way, so we could be free to be close to Him.. none of its about hate of anyone but it is about becoming free of the evilness of livjng with unforgiven sin..

      • Joe, you wrote that violating another’s bodily integrity ” is in their nature,” but you’re “not saying every gay scout will do that?” Balogna assumptions about gay men aside, how can something be in a group of persons’ nature, yet not every person in that group will not perform said natural inclination?

        Are you aware of free will? Human moral autonomy? The ability to choose between right and wrong behavior?

        Because one individual may have transgressed on you, will all others? No. That is the logical fallacy of inappropriate and inaccurate induction.

        Because one person may have a sexual attraction to another, will that person violate another person’s being? No. That is why sexual assault is a crime and a reprehensible and immoral act. Because some persons violate other persons does not mean that all persons cannot resist violating other persons. I for one have absolutely NO desire to ever violate another person’s bodily and emotional integrity. I certainly hope you do not either.

        In conclusion, persons gay and straight are not animatrons. We all have control over our actions. We all have the ability to behave morally, and to not commit crime.

        • So your saying let L/G’s in. How about Bi-sexuals? Would we need policies for that? How about NAMBLA members? Would you draw draw the line there? Discriminate against them but not you? Isn’t this about all “discrimination” ?

          Policy nightmare…. It seems there are two issues, 1. The threat to children. 2. The definition of morality (which apparently is different depending on your position).

        • No different policies would be needed for bisexuals than would be needed for gays and lesbians.

          NAMBLA members advocate committing a crime. Consent is impossible in a relationship between an adult and a non-adult. Sexual activity without consent is a crime. To be bodily violated is to be the victim of a crime. Keeping criminals out of places where they express desire to commit crime against vulnerable persons is not discrimination; it is the philosophy of the American criminal justice system. Therefore, to juxtapose NAMBLA with lesbians and gays reveals a severe lack of comprehension of legality and discernment of moral action on your part.

          So, anyone who is a threat to youth should not be in the Boy Scouts. Lesbians and gay men, whether as youth themselves or as adults who are well adjusted and not criminally inclined, like their straight counterparts, are not a threat to youth.

          The definition of morality is discerned through one’s Church, Ward, Synagogue, Mosque, Temple, or other house of worship, as well as varying on an individual basis within those groups, and the moral judgement upon gay sexuality will vary in a pluralistic society. To disallow Group A, because Group B disapproves of them, when Groups C, D, and E affirm them, shows preference to Group B not just over A, but over C, D, and E as well. Group B is free to maintain its moral precepts; but it is not free to make Groups C, D, and E maintain them as well.

      • It is unacceptable (and illegal) for *anyone* to grab *anyone*’s privates in the way you describe. Sexual orientation of either party doesn’t come into it at all.

        Women are sometimes groped by men. Yes just because a few heterosexual men treat women this way, doesn’t mean that women should shun all men, or assume all men are likely to behave this way.

        Most heterosexual men (and women) are good people who behave with common sense and decency. Most homosexual men (and women) are good people who behave with common sense and decency.

        We should not shun individuals because a few members of their group behave in unacceptable ways.

        • You’ve just come across a perfect idea to guarantee safety in Boy Scouts! You are right, straight men sometimes abuse others, and gay men sometimes abuse others. So, obviously, the way to 100% guarantee safety in Boy Scouts is to make it a club for girls and women only!

          Let’s just lock up all men in their homes after 6 PM, and let women and girls go about as they please. Public violence will disappear overnight!

      • It is not in the nature of gay men to assault other people. It is in the nature of jerks to assault other people. Those come in both the homosexual and heterosexual persuasions.

      • It is not in a gay man’s “nature” to assault another person. That’s what you describe. Sexual assault. A person whose “nature” it is to assault another person is a jerk. A self entitled jerk that thinks he (or she) can do whatever he wants. Those come in both the homosexual and heterosexual varieties.

        • Whoops… sorry for the duplicate post. I thought the first one didn’t take. Wish I could delete one…

    • ronwfox@aol.com // February 8, 2013 at 2:09 pm //

      candy, when I was 15 and in my cabin another Scout made sexual advances towards me – very plain and specific. And that was in 1969. What are the odds that this will happen a lot more often if gay kids are explicitly permitted to join and be open about their sexuality. What do you think the odds are that some kid to whom advances are made reacts wildly disproportionately? And violently? Based on my 20+ years in Scouting I think the odds are excellent.

      • Ronwfox, I am very sorry that happened to you. That should not happen to anyone. But please understand that that individual made an immoral choice. It should say nothing about anyone but him or her. Likewise, if anyone were to do that without an explicit ban on gay youth, that is in total violation of the Scout Oath and Law. I would imagine that individual would be asked to leave and reported to law enforcement.

      • I’ve been through Scouts and spent many nights in cabins and tents with teen-age boys. I can tell you, without a doubt, that the straight boys were much more likely to sexually abuse other boys than the gay boys ever were.

        If I had a choice, I’d tent up with a gay kid. Much safer than tenting up with a testosterone-laden straight teenage boy, any day of the week!

    • Candy; EXACTLY!! You proved the obvious!!! you haven’t come across a situation that involved sex… Maybe that’s because the policies the BSA has put in place are working!!!! .. So your going to change them and break what isn’t broken..

    • candy, you obviously don’t go camping with the scouts and I do.. BSA Camping is not the place for women or homosexual men or women to be with the boys.. That’s just the truth of the BSA.. It doesn’t fulfill the true intent of BSA as envisioned by Baden-Powell.. Truths are truths and someone elses opinion on this issue doesn’t interest me.. I didn’t invent the truth I just seek it and then try to follow it.. Don’t believe me; ask the boys in the scouting program… They’ll tell you the same thing; I’ve heard them cause I actually asked them… They have a right to be heard too.. Anyone asking them.. It’s actually a program for them and not for aggressive militant homosexuals, atheists, and agnostics to fight a social war against unacceptance in a culture that is never on a whole going to accept homosexuality as anything less than repulsive sexual behavior.. Yes; many people actually believe homosexuality is repulsive sexual behavior.. see much of it on television or the movie theater.. NO.. Because people don’t want to pay to see that form of immorality thrown at them when its their nickle.. if they did don’t you think advertising money would be spent on programs promoting this kind of activity in these forms of entertainment..? You can’t force heterosexuals to think homosexuality is not repulsive behavior; its a natural aversion to an abnormal behavior.. just truths; take them or leave them.. if you want to understand the truths you be prayerful and find them on your own.. I did.. Starts with God’s only true Word written for us; the Holy Bible..

      • Women have been camping with boys in BSA since 1988. 1/3 of all adult leaders in BSA are women. If BSA does not adhere to your values, then why did you join in the first place?

  54. OlderScouter // February 7, 2013 at 6:25 am //

    jonnyrat78 – Just because I’m attracted to a woman doesn’t mean I will have sex with her, especially not by forcing myself upon her. Teen hormones are raging but a gay boy isn’t going to attack his friend just because he’s attracted to him. It’s called self-control, and though it’s been a while since I was a teen, I don’t remember trying to have sex with every girl I was attracted to, much less jumping them.
    You’re saying that because teens have raging hormones, boys who are gay won’t be able to control themselves when camping, swimming, tenting, etc with other boys?
    And that’s a similar argument made by strict Islamists about women, that men have no self-control, therefore women must cover themselves in a burka and can never talk with a man who’s not a direct relative, .Otherwise the men’s raging hormones would force them to have sex with the woman.
    Both arguments are wrong.
    All the showers at camp I’ve seen in the past 20 years provide private showers. Depending on the camp, some even have private changing areas. When my troop is at camp, the boy-leaders take the troop down to the shower house. At one camp, I walked to the showers at the same time but I but used the adult facilities and never went in the boy’s changing area when they were changing. That’s basic Youth Protection, which all adults agree to abide by, right? And by that time we should be able to overcome our raging hormones.
    Your inference that some homosexual leaders have an agenda – sounds like you’re saying they either MUST have sex with every person that moves – adult or child – or that they want to convert everyone to *their way*. The only “homosexual agenda” is the agenda that African-Americans had back when they were excluded from Scouting – that they want the same opportunities to be a Scout that whites had – to not be excluded because of something they had no control over.
    Finally, If you’re a straight adult man and you’re worried that a gay man in Scouts is going to attack you, please consider therapy. Because adult gay Scouts are even more afraid of offending their fellow leaders than you are scared of being jumped. Get over yourself – you’re just not THAT attractive that any Scout would consider raping you! :-)

    • the aggressive militant homosexual agenda isn’t rooted in a desire to be good role models and leaders to boys; why would it be.. the agenda is to attain some sort of moral acceptance for a behavior God called an abomination to His creation and sinful.. that will NEVER happen.. homosexuality will always be repulsive to heterosexuals and maybe vice a versa.. goes against the deep inner emotions of humanness; just a fact of the humanness of mankind.. if homosexuals seize control of the BSA leadership they will try to bully a tolerance and level of acceptance into and against anothers free will and human nature to be repulsed by their SINFUL behavior.. In the truth of your heart you can’t deny any of this would not be the ambition of the militant homosexuals.. racism will disintegrate in time but the way heterosexuals and God feels about homosexual behavior will never truly change.. just accept the fundamental truths of human nature and homosexuals go freely do whatever you choose to do and quit being so intolerant

      • Walla e,

        You’re trying to impose your religious beliefs on others.

        Many religions don’t agree with you. Respect their beliefs. That’s a large part of what this issue is about.

        • UnGodly people aren’t welcome in the BSA.. I think that’s pretty clear.. the BSA is a Godly organization for Godly people; that’s pretty clear.. I believe in God and He tells me who He is through His Holy Word; the Bible… I didn’t write His word but I do have a desire to surrender to His true Word and mold my character to the biblical principles He gave all of us to freely choose to live by.. why would I surrender to your wrongful teachings? I wouldn’t betray God to appease anyone.. I sin but I don’t try to normalize my sins and try to convince people to change God’s truths so I’m not sinful.. I accept my sins and take them to God asking for forgiveness through the blood sacrifice of His Son.. Its what this is all aboutt.. the Scouts are a religious Godly organization and militant homosexuals don’t like it because to them the BSA stands in the way of their agenda to simply eliminate their sinfulness in the eyes of God and make them think their free to “marry” and do other blasphemous things in the name of equality, non-discrimination etc. But the truth is that in God’s eyes homosexual behavior will always be an abomination to Him no matter what modern day it is.. Its a truth of the Holy Spirit.. God’s Holy Spirit.. I guess the truth hurts sometimes; when I know I can’t do whatever I want to do because the Holy Spirit within me tells me its sinfu sometimes I feel anxious about it too but then I prayerfully thank God for His love in my heart and thank Him for His promise of an eternal life with Him; His promise if I keep a close relationship with Him and that’s only attainable by trying to live a life without sin and simply believing that His Son died for my sins freeing me to be in His presence.. Its not just my religion and its not antiquated in any modern day; its timeless.. truths never change and neither will the issue that God sees homosexual behavior as a sin against His creation…

        • I take it that respect for our religious beliefs will not be forthcoming.

        • Walla E
          Godly organization?! Why is that people like me who are Atheists do more that Christians will do for their own children in such a “godly” organization?

      • Kevin… sounds like you are not respecting Wall e’s religion. You should be more tolerant with those who you don’t agree with.

        • Ha ha ha … that’s funny! I assume you’re kidding.

        • I would assume sexually active homosexuals with a hearts desire to be Christians have a struggle carrying their cross.. I’m a Christian.. nothing I’ve said contradicts my faith.. my troop is a Christian Godly troop.. we aren’t fearful to pray and ask God’s blessing ti be in the work we do.. that’s why the scouts don’t welcome homosexuals, atheists or agnostics; why would you want to be part of a group that your not welcome in.. you won’t find me crying foul because I can’t join the homosexual, atheist and agnostic groups.. and you wont find me attacking their freedom to exist either.. I never said I was tolerant.. if you attack me or something I believe in I fight.. I like to fight for a cause I believe in.. I’ll fight for the BSA. I grew up in it.. I became an EagleScout.. I’m a leader.. My son just became anEagle scout and he likes to fight for what he believes in too.. chip off the old block and I’m proud of him… it insures the future’s moral straightness; don’t you just love it!!

        • Nope… serious. Too many times we hear of those who are tolerant of all views except those that are Christian. Hypocrisy.

        • Then you have me at a loss Joe. I apologize if I haven’t been clear. What we want is that our unit (which is charted by a Christian church) be allowed to follow our beliefs, which are “open and affirming”. As I read Wall e’s comments, he claims that his beliefs supersede those, and that we must follow his biblical interpretation.

          I’m not taking the position that his unit needs to change its policy. If they chose to exclude LGBT individuals, that’s their decision.

        • Walla e,

          Our church is also Christian and welcomes LGBT individuals. We interpret the bible differently than you do. We see no struggle for someone to be both LGBT and Christian.

          I respect your beliefs, your right to express them, and your right to follow them in your BSA career.

          It’s just that your beliefs, or your Church’s beliefs, hold no authority over our Church, and by extension, the unit we charter.

        • There’s nothing in the Christian faith that I’ve ever seen that said a Christian should be tolerant and accepting of another faith… Nothing I’ve ever seen in the Bible that says we should do anything less than share the Gospel with others.. Why would I be tolerant and accepting of an atheists viewpoint? It’s my prayer that they find the truth leading to everlasting life the same way I did; alone with the guidance of many hours of prayer and teachings of many Christian brothers and sisters.. But my being intolerant doesn’t lead me to join a members only Blog and struggle to destroy the BSA which is a Godly organization strongly rooted and led by Christians and Christian organizations.. If you drive away the Christian Faiths there won’t be a BSA left to support them and becomming more worldly is just the way the BSA will ultimately destroy themselves.. right now their in control of their own destiny by not changing their membership policy; even have a Supreme Court decision supporting their Constitutional right to freely run their organization to fulfill their mission of providing a safe place for boys to grow through the good moral leadership of Godly men and the BSA program… So you won’t find much tolerance for people that choose to attack my organization.. I’m a paid member of the BSA and this is a Blog for paid members of the BSA.. If your on here and not a paid member then your on here wrongfully.. But then your ultimate is nothing less than wrongful so why wouldn’t you be trying to hijack this site to also serve your aggressive militant social agendas…

        • If you accept sexually active homosexuals into your leadership and think homosexuals have some sort of godly right to be married then your not a Christian Church; your a cult of some sort.. It’s not hard to interpret the Bible on this issue; doesn’t take a theologian of any sort.. The Holy Spirit will tell you the truth of all of it.. I’m not the authority over your church; God is the authority.. I wonder how you answer His Word giving your church direction on how to address homosexuality?? It isn’t a behavior that should elevate you into the leadership of any Christian Church.. It’s sinful similar to so many sins of humankind; of the sinful nature Jesus offers forgiveness for.. The goal of a Christian on earth isn’t to find eartly pleasure and sexual love.. The goal is to find a close relationship with God and to live a life worthy of being judged by Him to be worthy to live an eternal life in Heaven.. You can choose to follow your church or to follow God.. The true church is made of the body of people coming together to serve His will for our lives… living blind and not recognizing the sin in your life will only lead you to be distanced from a closer relationship to God.. Think I wrote His Word? I just read it and the Holy Spirit He blessed me with provides me interpretation…. Show me biblically where any of what I’ve said is wrong.. the BSA is a Godly organization and has gathered the vast majority of its support from the Christian Faith.. That’s a true majority to be listened to because without the majority everyone looses everything… Start your own groups in your own local groups; your free.. start your own local youth groups and go recruit a homosexual male couple to lead it.. if you feel so strongly in favor of that sort of leadership then go do it.. I’m sure the media will be more than happy to promote your endeavor and achievements.. but I wonder how many parents are going to actually let their boys and girls to camping or go on any other outdoor activity with them… truths don’t change… its what your talking about isn’t it???

        • Wallace,

          It sounds like you should consider getting out of Scouting. Your statements show you don’t agree with the declaration of religious principles you signed on your leader form. Specifically clauses 1 and 2 (“nonsectarian” in clause 1, and “he respects the beliefs of others” in clause 2). Perhaps you should form your own organization, one that better suits your religious beliefs, or stick with your church’s youth group?

          Note, this takes us full circle, as my Chartered Organization, an “Open and Affirming” Congregational Church, is asking that its beliefs be respected (and by extension, honored within our unit).

          However … I have to admit that I’ve been on the fence for some time. I’m torn between letting chartered organizations decide, and feeling that is inadequate. To me it’s uncomfortably like segregation [because I accept that someone "IS" LGBT, rather than they "CHOSE" to be LGBT]. The BSA had “Black Units” from the very beginning, but integration was another matter entirely. Units in some Councils in the South threatened to burn their uniforms if they were forced to integrate, and the NAACP had to threaten to sue the Mormon Church in order to have African Americans allowed to be leaders in Utah (where virtually every unit was chartered by a Mormon Church).

          You’re actually pushing me toward viewing this as more of a civil rights issue … probably not the consequence you wanted. But you and Taylor have exposed the “radical Christian agenda” behind the hate speech directed at the LGBT community.

          —- For reference —-

          Article IX. Policies and Definitions—From the Charter and Bylaws

          Section 1. Declaration of Religious Principle, clause 1. The Boy Scouts of America maintains that no member can grow into the best kind of citizen without recognizing an obligation to God. In the first part of the Scout Oath or Promise the member declares, “On my honor I will do my best to do my duty to God and my country and to obey the Scout Law.” The recognition of God as the ruling and leading power in the universe and the grateful acknowledgment of His favors and blessings are necessary to the best type of citizenship and are wholesome precepts in the education of the growing members. No matter what the religious faith of the members may be, this fundamental need of good citizenship should be kept before them. The Boy Scouts of America, therefore, recognizes the religious element in the training of the member, but it is absolutely nonsectarian in its attitude toward that religious training. Its policy is that the home and the organization or group with which the member is connected shall give definite attention to religious life.

          Section 1. Activities, clause 2. The activities of the members of the Boy Scouts of America shall be carried on under conditions which show respect to the convictions of others in matters of custom and religion, as required by the twelfth point of the Scout Law, reading, “Reverent. A Scout is reverent toward God. He is faithful in his religious duties. He respects the beliefs of others.”

          Section 1. Freedom, clause 3. In no case where a unit is connected with a church or other distinctively religious organization shall members of other denominations or faith be required, because of their membership in the unit, to take part in or observe a religious ceremony distinctly unique to that organization or church.

          Section 1. Leaders, clause 4. Only persons willing to subscribe to these declarations of principles shall be entitled to certificates of leadership in carrying out the Scouting program.

      • MoveOnAlready // February 7, 2013 at 9:37 pm //

        AMEN and Thank You Walla e for your input. Well said in both your comments. Keep the faith and we’ll all keep praying that God’s will will prevail.

      • I can tell you, from what you just wrote, I do not want you around my sons!

    • I’m not tolerant of people who attack the BSA just because their not welcome to join… my faith doesn’t encourage me to be tolerant; does yours? if yours does then why don’t you walk away from attacking the BSA and respect their Constitutiinal right to freely choose how to run their organization.. why would you huh?? its not your true agenda to just join and contribute… defending the BSA against people like you… It’s my hearts desire.. equqlity’s not biblical and you don’t have a right to be in the BSA bases on a misconception that equality is a legal right within a private organization.. start your own youth organization and build it to be everything you want it to be.. that’s what America’s all about; competition… go for it…

      • Your faith is one of hate that I have heard around too many fire rings at BSA camping events.

        • Gene S… What ridiculous comments you make.. What are you trying to say?? Are you thinking and speaking for me now?? Your wrongful.. Your obviously a very angry atheist.. You make unsubstantiated comments wrecklessly destroying any credibility you hope to attain… good luck with that strategy to the aggressive militant atheist agenda on how to destroy the BSA for my own selfish purpose…

      • So then the BSA must be defunded and not given special treatment when it comes to schools and such.

        You are, after all, a private organization and therefore not in need of pubic funds.

    • johnnyrat78 // February 7, 2013 at 3:41 pm //

      Stop with the black/gay comparisons, they are nothing alike. See my first post. Stop using little smiley faces to make a point.
      And by the way, I am sure you are okay with your son being gay, or being approached by a gay boy. It’s just a natural progression of an enlightened society, right??

    • ronwfox@aol.com // February 8, 2013 at 2:12 pm //

      “Teen hormones are raging but a gay boy isn’t going to attack his friend just because he’s attracted to him. It’s called self-control …”

      OlderScouter, if you’ve been in Scouting long are you going to tell me that teens are noted for their self-control? “Attack” is too strong a word, maybe, but you don’t think that a gay Scout isn’t going to make advances towards another Scout at some point? Do you think that every Scout so approached is going to act in a mature and controlled fashion? I’ve been doing this for 20+ years now as an adult (and about 12 years as a Scout) and from what I’ve observed (including having been the subject of sexual advances from a fellow Scout) I’m guessing that within a year some kid is going to get stabbed over this.

  55. Frances123 // February 7, 2013 at 8:09 am //

    In my opinion, the leadership of BSA fully intended to allow local chartering organizations to decide membership criteria for themselves, which is why the initial announcement was made just a few days after the news that a pack in Cloverly, MD was required to take down its non-discrimination clause from its website, or lose its charter.

    The BSA leadership must have checked with higher-ups in the LDS, Catholic, Methodist and Baptist churches before making the announcement that they expected to vote to remove the no-gay policy nationwide and let it be a local decision.

    They underestimated the reaction of the members of those churches, apparently and now need time to soothe the masses and reassure them that this policy will not affect their own troops.

    Meanwhile I have completely lost faith in BSA, and this has been the final straw. As members of BSA here have made it very clear that people should start their own scouting group, I will be joining the Baden-Powell Service Association, and starting a new group in my community. This organization is based on traditional scouting as intended by Baden-Powell and is inclusive, and run by volunteers so no heavy- handed councils and national to deal with. I am so sick of the way scouting has turned into a political issue instead of being what it was originally intended to be.

    • The LDS church allows openly gay men to be leaders in the church. Why should the LDS church not be allowed to have the members of its own church be members of BSA?

      • Because the BSA chooses not to follow the LDS.. if your church isn’t satisfied with their affiliation with the BSA then set your troop free from your organization and they WILL find like minded organizations to Charter their troop.. you dont have to charter a troop if the BSA moral codes disagree so much with the codes of the LDS.. why would you.. just because the LDS changed their morality doesn’t mean the BSA has to do the same.. maybe the LDS should build their own youth organization?? let parents decide when it comes time to choose which youth organization they want themselves and their family to be affiliated with..

        • The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints has their own youth organization. They partner with the BSA and utilize the Scouting program as the activity arm of their young men’s program. Incidentally they have maintained this partnership for 100 years. Much longer than a majority of other CO’s in the United States. They also account for roughly 35% of the BSA’s membership. As for changing their morality please refer to the following website for a more complete introduction of their morality on homosexuality http://www.mormonsandgays.org/

    • ronwfox@aol.com // February 8, 2013 at 2:17 pm //

      “The BSA leadership must have checked with higher-ups in the LDS, Catholic, Methodist and Baptist churches before making the announcement that they expected to vote to remove the no-gay policy nationwide and let it be a local decision.”

      Check that. I have seen no announcement anywhere that the BSA expected to approve this policy. I’ve seen announcements that they were planning to consider it. The presumption that they would approve it is an invention of the media, who seek to advance this as their idea of social justice.

    • Please don’t include the United Methodist Church in this list! Open Hearts, Open Minds, Open Doors.

  56. Eddie Reeves // February 7, 2013 at 9:26 am //

    People are focusing too much on the ban and if its right or not. For one the Boy Scouts is a “PRIVATE” organization and can set guidelines as they see fit. The program at no point touches upon sexual orientation and that’s how it should be.

    Scouting is not in the business of sex education, we are a set of volunteers from all walks of life and faith that come together to teach boys about nature and build self confidence. It is not our business what people do in their private lives, we must not push what happens at home upon other people’s children no matter what it may be.

    As a leader, I could care less if someone is gay or not, a good person is a good person regardless of preference. I only ask that everyone use common sense and act like mature adults, there are somethings that we don’t need to share with children.

    • “Scouting is not in the business of sex education,”

      I agree. The problem is, current BSA policy says that they are in the business of sex education. Current BSA position statements in court state that BSA “teaches that homosexual conduct is not morally straight”.

      That is what the national council is now dealing with. How to get sex education back out of Scouting, after it was forced into Scouting about 20 years ago.

  57. Nancy Grossman // February 7, 2013 at 10:01 am //

    You know; I think we have all missed the point a bit here.

    With all due respect to our Executive Committee, I think these guys need to get out more.

    Anyone who has been on a Scout camping trip anytime in the last, oh, 10 to 100 years, would know that the real distractions in Scouting do not have to do with sexuality.

    I would like to suggest the following as way, way, way more worthy of national policy than the tired old “we don’t like the queers” gig. Really now; been there, done that—right?

    I hereby offer a menu of much-more-practical, way-less-likely-to-get-your-troop-kicked-out-of-that-nice-open-and-affirming-church-you-have-met-at for-the-last-50-years policy suggestions.

    Mind you, I am not recommending that the BSA adopt all of these prohibitions. That might prove to be just a tad too exclusive for an organization that tries to be a home for boys from all kinds of backgrounds and life experiences (except gay ones, of course) and their overworked parents. Since most of our young Scouts have not had the life experience to (yet) be exhibiting most of these inappropriate behaviors, I am talking here about the adults, those intrepid men and a few women who head to the woods for a weekend or a week, likely just so that they can indulge their bad habits without remorse or apology.

    But, truth to tell, if all of these mission-busters were thrown out, troops might be hard-pressed to nail down enough reliable adult leadership.

    So let’s just choose one. Recommendations, anyone?

    In terms of “distraction,” I would have to list the Snorers at the top of the list.

    Anyone who has tried to get a good night’s sleep camped on that one tiny piece of open and flat tent space that just happens to be too close to a Snorer’s tent knows exactly what I mean. And, in the morning, you have grumpy Scouts and bleary-eyed adult leaders—all except for the offender, of course, who has likely slept blissfully through the night, completely unashamed of their deviant behavior.

    Now, I am not suggesting that BSA ask upfront about snoring. I am only recommending that we promptly boot any “open and avowed” Snorer. “Open” is when you are caught in the act, of course, and “avowed” is anyone foolish enough to proclaim, “I am a Snorer! It’s part of who I am, not a behavior that I can change!”

    Of course, we all know that, with enough prayer, willpower, and investment in costly treatments, any such “orientation” can be overcome. So please don’t offer up any of that “I was born this way” crap.

    Next in line, of course, would have to be the inveterate email/voice-mail checkers—you know the ones I mean, the guys who will climb four miles straight up a mountain trail just to get that oh-so-good cell-phone reception at the top (OK, so maybe the dog was sick at home). And, of course, since the Scouts aren’t permitted to stay plugged in on these outings…well, once again we are talking about those inappropriate adult role models. I shudder to think of one of them converting my son to his can’t-live-without-it-for-a-day “lifestyle.”

    And my third nomination for Distracters Royale would have to be the compulsive campfire-makers, the gotta-make-a-fire-morning-and-evening-no-matter-the-red-flag-status guys (and you know who you are). While the occasional resulting wildfire is sure to be a flaming high adventure for all concerned, it is also likely to prove a “distraction” to the financial solvency of the small, rural fire departments that are called upon to extinguish it—no?

    And, no list would be complete without mentioning the Loud-Mouthed Mothers: the don’t-forget-your-sunscreen-and-you-really-need-to-get-out-of-that-lightning-storm ones. They see an issue, and they just have to speak up about it, LOUDLY. Talk about “advancing an agenda”…and who let them into this organization, anyhow? Isn’t this the Boy and Former-Boy Scouts of America?

    Really—let’s focus on the true threats to the mission of the BSA.

    • MoveOnAlready // February 7, 2013 at 10:50 am //

      Since when are ANY of the items you just listed considered a sin or an abomination in the eyes of GOD?!?!? The point is BSA is supposed to be an independent organization allowed to make its own rules, regs, etc. If you don’t like their rules….GET OUT. Go make your own We Like Everyone Everything You Do Is Okay As Long As It Makes You Feel Good Scouting Organization. Stop trying to shove your agenda down our throats. Why do you want to be a part of a group that doesn’t share the same views, morals, opinions? I just don’t get it.

      • Frances123 // February 7, 2013 at 11:32 am //

        MoveOnAlready,

        My God considers snoring to be as much a sin or abomination as being homosexual — which is to say in my religious faith, neither one is a sin or in any way immoral.

        The reason why I and others might want to be a part of Boy Scouting is that it is a decent organization, except for this one issue of discrimination against people who are gay. I don’t dislike the BSA but simply cannot put on the uniform and become an adult Scouter unless its policies in this area change.

        • Dear Frances123; GOOD BYE!

        • Johnnyrat78 – Please keep the conversation civil. While we disagree, and have strong feelings on the subject, we can still all try to model kindness in sharing our thoughts and perspectives.

        • Dear EagleMom,
          This is a direct quote from Feances123 ” I don’t dislike the BSA but simply cannot put on the uniform and become an adult Scouter unless its policies in this area change.”

          I am simply say good bye, because she/he can’t abide by the BSA policy. I don’t know how much more civil I can be.

        • I think you got it right in the first few words you said; “MoveOnAlready” and you should.. Why do you waist your time with an organization that not only doesn’t accept homosexuals as members but atheists and agnostics.. It’s a Godly organization and the very fabric of scouting is woven with Godly principles so you would only find a time of complete torment to you… It sounds like you don’t share the same respect fot Godliness that the BSA stands for because your making a joke of religion by saying snoring is sinful in the same way God sees homosexual behavior.. God doesn’t hate homosexuals.. He does say that homosexual behavior is an abomination against His creation.. I hope you find another place apply your leadership skills where their uniform would fit you better…. good luck

    • I love it! We should make a “Sense of Humor” merit badge a requirement for Eagle Scout. Thanks for putting things in perspective!

      • frances123 // February 8, 2013 at 10:44 am //

        Wallace and johnnyrat78, your comments are not surprising. They are typical of much you read and hear from people involved in BSA.

        “You don’t like it, leave!”

        This is exactly what has been happening. People who don’t like the policies have been leaving BSA in droves. It is impossible to find leaders for our packs and troops. Without leaders we cannot run a successful pack or troop. We ALL know that a great deal of adult work is needed to make a pack or troop successful How can we have adult leaders when the official policy of BSA is discrimination? People are ashamed to let it be known that they are a part of this discrimination.

        Understand it isn’t BSA we don’t agree with — it is the policy of discrimination. One PART of BSA, and a part which we think should change.

        The organization is dwindling locally and will continue to do so if BSA won’t even allow individual troops to state publicly that they refuse to discriminate against gays. Corporate donations will continue to drop — and apparently BSA needs these donations to continue to exist.

        Yet children more than ever need encouragement to get out of the house and develop a connection with the outdoors, leadership skills, connect with others and be of service to their communities.

        People WANT to be involved in scouting, real scouting and not just after school nature and enrichment clubs, which I am sure are also fun. Those of us who have a history in Scouting value tradition, which is why the rejuvenation of the Baden-Powell Service Association — a return to scouting’s original roots — is a very appealing option. But obviously it is a young program and many people would prefer to be involved with an established organization, which I can understand.

        However, perhaps BSA is *too* established. As is clear from these discussions, Boy Scouting has gotten enmeshed with religion, and big business, and corporate donations, and politics, to a point way past anything like what Baden-Powell could have ever envisioned when he introduced boys to “the game of scouting”. I wonder of what he would think of American scouting today?

        • If the aggressive militant homosexuals hadn’t chosen to start their war on our culture including the BSA maybe you wouldn’t be having the troubles your having.. our pack and a sout troop have never been stronger.. its a blessing to see it all flurish.. i think in ways its because people are seeking moral havens where they can confidently allow their children to grow in the BSA knowing the high standards of morality they keep.. I hope things turn around for your unit.. it isn’t for everyone but you can’t make it what you want; be tolerant and accepting for what its taken hundreds of dedicated volunteers to make it over the last 103 years.. HAPPY BIRTHDAY BSA; 103 years old today!!!

        • I guess you can describe the truth as typical words.. sounds like you keep hearing the same song from lotsa different singers.. guess its cause its the truth.. if you dont like the BSA then leave.. why would you stay.. if it grows smaller but keeps its integrity then that’s ok.. doesnt have to include everyone; just those that want it the way it is and there are millions who want scouting to be left the way it is; ME!! I love it the way it is and dont believe in lowering your moral standards for every minority group that comes aling with a

    • Thanks for the laugh! I hope they don’t kick out the phone-checkers. I’d be out on my backside!

  58. Boy Scouts want to build good character, which to Scouts includes being physically strong, mentally alert, and morally straight.

    Those who do not want to build good character with these core values do not have to join the Boy Scouts. They can form their own organizations to suit themselves.

    So why don’t they just form the Gay Scouts, or GBT Merit Badge Society, or whatever they want?

    The answer is that they won’t tolerate the Boy Scouts being morally straight. They want to destroy the Boy Scouts because they hate people who believe that good character is morally straight.

    The LGBT activists have a zeal like that of Muslim jihadists to forbid anyone to speak against them and destroy any group that won’t bless their behavior.

    The proof shows in universities where speech codes ban free speech that does not approve homosexual conduct, and policies forbid even Christian groups from expecting their student leaders to be morally straight.

    The Battle over the Boy Scouts is not about tolerance, but tyranny.

    • Very good sir!

    • EXACTLY.. Truth is truth and can’t be changed and Fred’s words ring with so much clear truth… by the way; equality, tolerance and non-discrimination are not biblical principles to be followed by Godly and Christian people.. We can do them all in a Godly Way and He shows how in His only written word given to all of us whether you choose to accept it or not; the Holy Bible… the Bible teaches Godly people to be intolerant of sin in their lives, teaches people how to be unequal in leadership and a subordinate roles and teaches people how to discriminate using His principles to mold our lives to live a life within His will for each of us; whether you accept it or not is everyone’s free will.. He loves our free will.. does make everything more beautifully exciting; I think I get that part of Him…

      • BSA is not a Christian organization.

        The Boy Scouts is “absolutely nonsectarian in its attitude toward that religious training”. I learned that my first month in Cub Scouts. What has BSA been teaching its members the last 20 years? If BSA allows its membership to advance in rank while believing that BSA is a Christian organization, then BSA has brought this all on itself.

        If you want to be a national organization, but then you identify your organization as exclusively Christian, you put your self in a no-win situation. That is where BSA has put themselves.

        At this point, having allowed itself to be labeled as exclusively Christian there are only two choices for BSA.

        1) Continue to cater to a Christian audience. As the US grows increasingly pluralistic and secular, this will quickly move BSA into the backwater of U.S. culture. A position occupied by “Awana” and “Royal Rangers” when I was a kid. BSA can choose to join them, and put itself in a place where the vast majority of Americans doesn’t know them, and doesn’t care.

        2) BSA can re-claim the nonsectarian values that it was founded on. The very same nonsectarian values that made it possible for Catholics and Protestants and Mormons and Jews to all build together the greatest youth development program in the 20th century. Sure, this will piss off a lot of the current members of BSA, who somehow were taught that BSA is Christian. But nonsectarianism is the true nature of Scouting. People of all faiths, working together, is what built BSA. These same people can come together and re-build BSA from the rubble that BSA has created of itself. But only if BSA lets them come together. Only if BSA is brave enough to re-assert the truth that BSA is nonsectarian.

        I am pretty pessimistic about the chances of BSA. But then I remember that “A Scout is Brave”, and I think, there may still be some true Scouts in BSA, who remember the founding values of nonsecarianism, and who are willing to stand up and make the hard choices to bring this country back together again around Scouting, and reclaim BSA from the Christian sects who have begun to claim BSA as their own.

        A Scout is Cheerful. A Scout is Brave. We might just pull this off after all.

        • The majority of Americans identify themselves as Christians and I’m one of them.. Our troop is sponsored by a Christian church as many packs and troops are.. I teach the scouts and my children Christian principles; this is how we live our lives molding ourselves to God’s biblical principles.. my free choice protected by my US Constitution and defended by many… you wont muffle the Christians and all of this is only awakening a patient and quiet majority.. aggressive militant homosexuals are making a big mistake in attacking the Christian majority in this country.. their only ruining things for all the civil homosexuals who could care less about the BSA or other political and social issues they will never change.. other people have rights to and when they trample on somone elses freedoms their going to get a backlash of people willing to stand up for those rights.. ME!

        • you obviously don’t understand Scouting like you think you do.. it is very much a Godly faith bases organization and God has blessed it because of that commitment.. Godly principles have always been part of it and the Christian faith is woven all through its fabric.. it doesnt have to xhange; UnGodly people who want to participate in the BSA do..Have you ever recited the Scout Oath or been in a banquet where a thankful prayer to God was made for the meal about to be shared. there will never be no religion and no God; dream on.. He puts a desire to be close to Him in the hearts of Godly men and women.. you only pretend to believe the things you say; they arent truthful.. He won’t allow it.. He created us..

      • “equality, tolerance and non-discrimination are not biblical principles” … “the Bible teaches Godly people to be intolerant of sin in their lives, teaches people how to be unequal in leadership and a subordinate roles and teaches people how to discriminate using His principles”

        Wallace, may I ask what denomination you call home? This comment bewilders me, as it runs contrary to my understanding of Christianity.

        • I’m a Christian. Don’t you understand His truthful Word???? If there’s something you don’t understand specifically just ask???

        • Maybe you don’t understand Christianity Kevin.. might be the basis for our apparent disagreement in what scouting as a Christian is all about.. I don’t check my faith in at the door anywhere I go.. my freedom; my choice…

        • Wallace, why do you expect others, who do not believe as you do, to check THEIR faith at the door? I personally don’t believe homosexuality to be contrary to my beliefs of Christianity. My church agrees with me. My freedom, my choice. Live and let live.

        • no answer to this simple question asked 2 days ago… interesting…

  59. I choose to look at the worst case scenario when making a decision.. It’s the scout way; “Be Prepared” and I’m an old Eagle Scout who chooses to try to live the Scout Oath and follow the Scout Law… The actual worst case scenarios I don’t choose to imagine as a father of two children, one of which is receiving his Eagle Rank in a ceremony held in his honor tomorrow. Sorry but if homosexuals, atheists, and agnostics are allowed membership into BSA the truth is the door will be opened to all of them not just the ones with truely honorable characters. Militant members of all three groups will choose to attain leadership positions to futhrer their political and social agendas; think their fight is over if they destroy the BSA.. they want the Baptist Church, marriage, the Catholic Church and probably even God to be convinced that their homosexual behavior is normal behavior and not an abomination or a sinful at in the eyes of God. A millitant homosexual male couple take control of a boy scout troop. they choose to begin to push their agenda of acceptance upon the other leaders and the scouts by being openly affectionate during campouts and summer camps etc. This will be repulsive to heterosexual youth and leaders who don’t want any displays of affection at the outdoor BSA events; its a guy thing.. but its going to happen and if the other leaders and youth comment about how their repulsed by that behavior they’ll be called intolerant, old fashioned, homophobic, discriminatory, etc. Why wouldn’t that be one of the scenarios that would happen; its already happening in my life, on television, in the print media and on the radio… And if I sit and try to imagine all the potential worst of the worst case scenarios then it isn’t hard to imagine that the BSA will ultimately have to go bankrupt from a lack of support because people have the free choice to leave and build their own youth organizations that have policies they want to live by to provide their children the kind of lifestyle that’s going to lead to helping them in their mission of building men of solid moral character who have a love of God, Country, Family and themselves.. Truths are truths.. you can choose to think of the best case scenario but that would be foolish when the worst scenario will sometimes happen to.. gotta “BE PREPARED” for all of it or your not a good scout.. If your not a scout then none of this discussion is any of your business because its our private organization and the US Constitution and the US Supreme Court says we can choose freely in the USA to run our organization any way we choose to run our organization and I will respect the rights of any free and legal organization to do the same… It’s my BSA too.. I paid my Dues… I have a rightful say…

    • Good post.

      I want to note that here in fly-over country, I have been around people of this life style in the past and today as well. I considered them friends even though I did not condone their sinful lifestyle. In all my cases they did not flaunt their lifestyle and kept it private. They are not the activist of this lifestyle. This is not the case with those who are pushing this agenda nationally. Anyone reading their threads, subscribe to George Takei on FB and read the comments, etc know that they intend to not keep their lifestyle private.

      BSA is not a Christian organization but the majority of religions consider this lifestyle a sin. Yes some Christian denominations ignore the sin and even do sermons with only a single bible verse reference so they can pick and choose. Theoretically, they still use the same bible.

      I know a few scout leaders that if this goes through will hang on a year or so to get their son their Eagle and then they are gone. That probably includes me. This is regardless of what their CO decides. Mine CO is Methodist and I assume they will not take a stand.

      I heard from council that a large majority will leave and they are the long term committed older leaders who donate. They expect the organization to shrink immensely and consolidate to survive as similar organizations did when they made the move.

      I hope it won’t change in the Midwest overnight for most troops but it looks like there is a chance that it will. Sadly I can see a time when the rank of Eagle is not valued in the world (It has already been sliding in recent times due lower standards) and I can no longer note with head held high that I am involved in scouts in my particular community as I do today.

      • You have to stand up for what you believe in to be the truth of your heart.. Scouts will be much better off if they dont change their membership policies and keep the Christian organizations that make up a far greater number of supporters than the truly tiny tiny minority that make up the homosexuals, atheists and agnostics trying to join with a true hearts desire to make it a better organization rather than a triumphant accomplishment in creating some kind of false acceptance of their abnormal lifestyle.. if only Christian organizations sponsor BSA groups then BSA’s better off starting with them than they will be in starting without them. It doesnt matter to me what people think of my Eagle Rank.. I did it for myself because it was in my heart to do it.. it will always have a value to those that value what scouting means and what it means to live by its Oath and Law.. that’s what it symbolizes.. a particular character of man.. my vote counts too..

        • yep

  60. I see another problem. Advancement among the committee. Who’s going to be Scout master, etc. We decide in committee. We make judgement calls on their qualifications, how they handle kids, their personalities, their leadership skills and their morality.

    There are several on the committee that would never make scout master. If one is L/G are we opening ourselves up to a lawsuit? Happens all the time in the workforce. Lawsuits because of gender, etc. even when the decision was skills based. Assuming I have a CO that accepts LGB’s in leadership rolls, do I now have to meet a quota since this decision is based on sexual preference?

    We just had a review with our local United Way,. They had all kinds of ethnic questions to determine if we were all inclusive. Will I have to give sexual orientation statistics in the future?

    • There are many fellow Scouters that will bury their head in the sand or rely on their peers honor to not sue but I am far more pragmatic. The language the use makes it clear e.g. good first step, more is needed, does not go far enough, the BSA can do better, not inclusive enough, still discriminating. The ONLY way to achieve the desired goal is through vicious and predatory litigation with extreme prejudice. Personal experience tells me get ready for the whirlwind. That is why I could care less about gay/straight. That is not THE issue. I am worried about the procedure and who rewrites the Scout Oath and Law to apply equally across the board with no exceptions. I wonder what happens when you let those who have no vested interest in the program or those who joined under false pretenses determine membership for those that have acted honestly. Here is a link to exactly what the legal issues will be and where CO’s will be liable. Happy reading.

      http://blog.libertyinstitute.org/2013/02/the-boy-scouts-threat-to-religious.html

    • A chartering organization retains the right to add additional requirements to adult leadership positions, above and beyond what BSA requires. Some COs will not allow a woman to be scoutmaster. Some COs would not allow a practicing Muslim to be scoutmaster. This is all legal as long as it is within the leadership requirements laid out by the CO.

      Now, if you receive United Way funding, then of course you have to follow United Way rules too. But receiving United Way funding is not a requirement to have a Scout troop. United Way is a private group and can set whatever rules it wants, just like BSA. If you don’t like United Way’s rules, you don’t have to take their money.

      If you don’t have enough community support to pay for a Scout troop with the values you agree with, then maybe you need to find another community. Or maybe you need to ask yourself why your values are so outside those of the community that the community won’t support you?

      • The larger issue is one of advancement. There will essentially be two standards for rank advancement and Eagle. You will have (for lack of a better term) “progressive” CO’s and Units that will allow virtually any behavior classified as morally straight or clean sending their District Eagle Advancement Committees candidates as Eagle worthy. You will have more “traditional” CO’s and Units holding the line on the standards rejecting young men for rank advancements and for Eagle. Essentially it creates a division, a two tiered standard for something that should never be that way. That is why I have been screaming about the mechanics of such a divide. I can tell you form a District standpoint this is a MAJOR concern since we are not just a rubber stamp.

        • This already happens. There are some troops that know they have atheist kids, but don’t make a big deal of it. If the kid recites the Oath in some manner, and doesn’t cause a fuss, and meets all other qualifications for Eagle, the advancement committee sends him on his way. In other troops, they have a much more rigorous test of demonstrating one’s duty to God in some fashion. Specific standards vary from one unit to another. As long as core BSA standards are upheld, kids tend to get a pass on stuff that varies from one troop to the next.

        • The situation with an atheist or agnostic should NEVER happen. A core tenant of the Scout Oath is “Duty to God.” The BSA has specifically interpreted that to mean duty to a higher power (Creator) than yourself. Atheists and agnostics have no such beliefs and therefore are not capable of performing their “Duty to God” under the Scout Oath and Scout Law. Additionally on the 2012 Eagle Application one of the required references is “Religious Leader.” If a young man were to come before my Eagle Board of Review he would be denied Eagle Rank or ANY rank for that matter. Why? He fails to meet the standard. You mention following the core BSA standards but you are advocating creating a mulch-tiered standard based on nothing more than the direction the wind is blowing or because little Johny might get his feelings hurt. By your own admission you would sanction awarding Eagle Scout to an atheist or any unworthy Scout just because he meets the checklist requirements of Merit Badge, time served, and completed project. There are far more components involved. ANY Scout regardless of race color creed orientation size height intelligence handicap or “helicopter leaders and parents” that lies, cheats, steals, hides, obfuscates, misleads, or obtains ANY rank advancement including Eagle should hand them over and leave the BSA. They were acquired under false pretenses which violates most of the Scout Oath and Scout Law. Any adult leader that knowingly facilitated such a travesty should also leave the BSA for gross misconduct against the Scout Oath and Scout Law. The ends NEVER justify the means and it is precisely that ludicrous thinking (anything goes because the standard is inflexible or unfair) that has put the BSA in the position it is in. I cannot speak for other Districts but I feel very confident in saying that those of us who serve on District Eagle Advancement Committees and District Advancement Committees that have been properly trained and vetted understand this vital principle. We understand that as adults training tomorrows leaders sometimes you have to say no and break hearts because it is the right thing to do. The standard is the standard and it does not break because some adult leader is too weak to make the tough choice. Sometimes Scouts have to be told “good try” but you do not meet the standard come back when you do. As adult leaders we have to realize that every perceived wrong cannot be righted nor should it be. Life does not work that way and I can tell you from experience the business world does not either. We are raising generations of “entitlement” inflicted youth. I would rather hire a young man who failed at Eagle but succeeded in following the Scout Oath and Law in his life than hire a young man who made Eagle but lied, cheated, misled, hid, stole, or obfuscated his character to do so.

        • When I am reviewing the candidate, I ask questions especially if I do not see any letter from church. In the past (before me) our troop has had a kid go home to think about his answers and come back in 30 days.

  61. It is not like these people are going to be having sex at scouting events. Gay people are not going because we choose to ignore them. Do they not love and have families and children like the rest of us? We can’t change and control people just because you don’t agree with their lifestyle. We should pray for them and look inward at our own short comings. We are not all so different.

    • It is not like these people are going to be having sex at scouting events.

      Sad Bill, gay men have sex in public restrooms, in parked cars at interstate rest stops, in locker rooms etc. Heck, summer camp will be like Club Med for them. All homosexual sex is, is lust plain and simple. If it wasn’t they would not approach heterosexual men and boys.

      • Straight people also have sex in public restrooms, in parked cars at interstate rest stops, in locker rooms etc. And I’m sure there are stories of straight male and female leaders hooking-up on Scouting events. Heck, the BSA even allows married couples to share tents on Scouting events.

        You seem to assume that all gay people completely pre-occupied and focused on sex. That is false. Should we assume that all straight men are horny, lusting, sex-crazed adulterers just because some are? No! Most homosexuals (just like most heterosexuals) aren’t totally consumed by sex and don’t revolve their entire lives around having sex and hooking up with random individuals.

        • Difference is we segregate youth tents by sex in Explorers,etc. Now will we segregate by boys/girls and put each l/g one per individual tent? That would standardize the process to match what is current. Can’t put all the gay boys in one tent because that is like putting the boys with the girls. You might be able to put the gay boys with the straight girls but what about the Bi-sexuals. If Cub Scouts-put them with the parents but what about the Boy Scouts

          You have to agree with the logic. I am curious how you would resolve the dilemma.

  62. If the BSA wants to continue hanging on to these out-dated views, perhaps they should remove themselves from the World Scout Organization.

    The World Organization of the Scout Movement stated in 2011:
    “Scouting is an organization that is not exclusive on any grounds of discrimination. The World Organization of the Scout Movement has to stand up for civil and human rights… The World Scout Committee expresses deep concern at the occurrence of violations and discriminations of human rights in the world against persons on the grounds of their race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, sexual orientation, gender identity, birth or other status stresses that human rights and fundamental freedoms are the birthright of all human beings, that the universal nature of these.”

    I’m surprised that WOSM allows BSA members to wear the purple World Crest on their uniforms when the organization clearly discriminates on the grounds of sexual orientation.

    • Marcus — I agree 100%, if the BSA wants to continue this discrimination (which they have the legal right to do in America), then they really should stop calling themselves Scouts and remove themselves from the World Organization of the Scouting Movement. As WOSM says: “Scouting is an organization that is not exclusive on any grounds of discrimination” including “sexual orientation” and “gender identity.” It’s clear as day.

      It will be interesting to see what happens in 2019 if the BSA does not change their policy. As the World Scout Jamboree is currently scheduled to come to the Summit Bechtel Reserve in 2019. What will happen when the gay-banning BSA has to welcome and interact with homosexual Scouts from around the world?

      • “What will happen when the gay-banning BSA has to welcome and interact with homosexual Scouts from around the world?”

        According to some of the people here, apparently that is when hell will freeze over. I’ve always wondered what a frozen hell would look like, so I am kind of looking forward to the event.

  63. I would like to make you aware that not all Scouts follow the Hebrew or Christian Scriptures, nor are they required to for membership. However, for those who do, this might be useful:

    The Hebrew word toevah, in English translated “abomination,” does not signify something intrinsically evil like rape or theft discussed elsewhere in Leviticus, but something ritually unclean for Jews, like eating pork or having intercourse during menstruation. A prohibition against grave sexual sins like prostitution uses the word zimah, appearing in Lev 19:29. The Greek translation categorizes it under infringement of ritual purity rather than under violations of law or justice.

    A purely homosexual interpretation of the story of Sodom can be traced to Ambrose, Augustine, and Gregory the Great, when the story of Sodom included the concept of divine punishment for sins of the flesh, scelera carnis. Isa. 3:9, Jer. 23:14, Ezek. 16:49-50, Ecclus. 16:8 and Matt. 10:14-15 all advance theories of pride, greed, and contempt for strangers. Even an explicitly sexual reading in 2 Peter 1:10 is not concerned with homosexual acts.

    Romans 1 is intended to condemn Gentiles for their general infidelity; there was a time when monotheism was offered to or known by the Romans, but they rejected it (19-23). The point of Romans 1 is to stigmatize people who have rejected their calling and gotten off the true path they were once on. It would completely undermine the argument if the persons in question were not naturally inclined to the opposite sex as Paul says people are naturally inclined to monotheism. What caused the Romans to sin was not that they lacked what Paul considered proper inclinations but that they had them: they held the truth, but suppressed it in unrighteousness (18) because “they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer,” (28). Also, “against” is somewhat of a misleading translation of the preposition “παρά.” In the New Testament usage, “παρά” connotes not “in opposition to” (expressed by “κατά”), but “more than” or “in excess of.”

    Two words in 1 Corinthians 6:9 and one in 1 Timothy 1:10 have been taken at least since the early twentieth century to indicate that “homosexuals” will be excluded from the kingdom of heaven. Malakos, used in 1 Cor 6:9, is a common Greek word meaning “soft,” and is frequently understood as weak willed, debauched, licentious, loose, wanting in self-control, unrestrained, or wanton. Contemporary writings use it to describe opposite-sex lusts. The best evidence suggests Arsenokoitai meant “male prostitute” well into the fourth century. In 1 Tim 1:10, it is next to andrapodistes, which can be translated to ‘kidnappers’ or ‘slave-traders.’ One aim of the slave trade was to provide prostitutes for brothels; this could suggest that Paul is condemning a very specific and exploitative sexual system rather than gay sex.

    From an Eagle Scout and Catholic theologian, fully supportive of the Boy Scouts and its gay and straight members.

  64. I’ve participated in this same conversation, in several different arenas. This discussion has gone on for years in Linkedin’s scout leader groups.

    I see the same pattern every time. We start by removing “Cheerful”, “Friendly”, “Courteous” and “Kind” from the Scout Law. Then we change “Reverent” to “Fundamentalist Evangelical Christian”. “Brave” has tough going, because there’s so much fear of what could happen in tents at night. “Obedient” takes top billing, but only if you’re obedient to a particular religious viewpoint.

    I see people saying they are Scout leaders and Eagle Scouts, and then they say hateful things about people they’ve never met, arguing that an entire class of people are “unworthy”, “predators”, or “sinners.” It saddens me to hear leaders and Eagle Scouts talk that way.

    Usually there are cries to prevent the vast homosexual conspiracy that wants to destroy Scouting. Wow. Really? I have dozens of friends who are LGB or T. I’ve worked with them, played sports with them, and socialized with them since I was the age of Boy Scouts. My son and daughter have many friends who fall into these categories. They hang out at our house all the time. They aren’t different in any way that’s important to anything relevant to Scouting. They want to participate and have the same opportunities as straight youth, they want to contribute. The brave thing to do is to admit that they deserve the same opportunities.

    In my personal experience, who are we actually harming? Ironically, it’s the youngest scouts with “two moms”. Yup, the potential Tigers and Wolves who get told “you can be a Cub, but your Mom can’t help” are the only actual victims I’ve seen. I was just at our statewide Eagle celebration, and almost every single Eagle was accompanied by one or two parents wearing uniforms. My experience is that parental involvement is the single most important predictor of a Scout staying in the program and making it to Eagle. We start some kids out by saying “Mom’s not welcome here!” Taking your narrow religious beliefs and your fear out on a 7 year old is inexcusable.

    Homophobia is fading in our country. Surveys show a majority of Americans favor “Gay Marriage”, and support is strongest among the youth (teenagers and those in their 20′s). Eventually, Homophobia will be marginalized.

    • Boy do you ever not understand the significance or even the point of not having homosexuals, atheists, or agnostics in the BSA membership Kevin… Simply another aggressive militant supporter of people who believe and choose a certain lifestyle and then try to be part of something that they know wasn’t created for them… I don’t think I have ever heard of any scout, scout leader, or scout executive ever attack any of the three above mentioned groups or try to invade their decision to live and do what they choose to do.. Why do homosexuals, atheists, and agnostics think they have some sort of ownership and right to join the BSA.. Why would they?? I believe there would be very few homosexual men who would even want to be scoutmasters and this is all just for trying to normalize what they know and every Godly person knows to be abnormal and wrongful behavior.. But I honestly don’t care what you all do on your own time in your own worlds with your own lives; this is the USA after all.. I am willing to predict that any troop that would ever choose to have a homosexual leader would fold; is that the aggressive militant homosexuals desire? I don’t know; probably… “If I can’t win the BSA then I’ll destroy the BSA”. It’s a selfishly motivated battle to take something that simply doesn’t belong to you.. And using any methods to achieve your goal including attacking Christians, Attacking Godly People, Attacking Leaders, Eagle Scouts and everyone else that believes like most people believe which is that homosexual behavior is sinful behavior, I don’t think atheists or agnostics have any desire to join the BSA. All you do is cause more and more of the majority to wake up and defend this issue more and more.. It’s good BSA is waiting till May to choose.. Why wouldn’t they choose to favor the majority. You might attack biblical people but when you attack people who simply consider the Bible God’s Holy Word to all of us then who are you really attacking; your attacking God… Wow!! Good luck with that one… You can call a God fearing Bible reading faith filled Christian whatever you want… Doesn’t change His word.. and anyone that can read can see that God sees homosexual behavior as immoral… its very clear and plane in His Word… So call everyone you’d like to call names to everything you want.. think we haven’t heard it all before.. But no matter what you say the truth is still the truth at the end of it all; never changes does it… And in case your not sure; no it doesn’t…

      • All we need is love // February 11, 2013 at 9:11 pm //

        From the 1914 Scoutmaster’s Handbook:

        “The Scout Movement is not antagonistic to any civic enterprise, but rather seeks to cooperate with all other good movements in the interest of the boy. The Movement is wholly non-sectarian and plans to work with every sect and creed alike; it is non-military, and seeks to promote Peace Scouting and to develop educational character-building for good citizenship. It is wholly non-partisan. It cannot favor one interest against another and cannot countenance interference on any debatable questions, whether social, religious or political.”

    • Homosexuality will never be anything but repulsive behavior to a heterosexual person.. That’s a truth that’s lasted since the beginning of time or we wouldn’t even be having this debate.. It goes against the will of God; wasn’t part of what He intended to happen with His creation.. Do you actually believe it is?? I don’t think there was any problem with the homosexual women’s children in our Council joining the scouts.. Scouts have standards and theirs nothing wrong with having moral standards.. There will be a very small number of people cry and whine and say it isn’t fair but so are many other things in life.. And that’s ok because some people choose to freely build an organization that has one set of standards and another group of people are free to build another organization to best serve their hearts desire.. I think the homosexual woman in Martins Ferry should start her own youth group and serve the like minded youth in her area in the way she feels would best serve those youth.. Respect for God’s Word isn’t radical Christianity.. If you consider Godly people who value His Word to be the radical’s then your going to find a lot of radicals in your world.. Its a freedom Christians choose to exercise.. I really do think you should have the courage to just go do your own thing… If you think your going to ultimately change the Wording of God’s Holy Bible then that’s never going to happen.. It’s written on the hearts of Godly men… Nobody’s saying anyone has to choose to live a sinful life or to not live a sinful life.. It’s a personal choice and each of us have a responsibility to be “Obedient” to His Word or to choose to be disobedient to His Word.. Scouts choose to try to be “Obedient” while being “Reverent”.. its honorable and everyone’s free to choose to do the same thing; even you… maybe especially you… Your wrong about how profuse homosexuality is; that’s completely untrue.. And your very wrong about how socially acceptable homosexual behavior is.. Your information is wrongful and the population of homosexuals is less than 1%.. the vast vast majority of people are not homosexuals… Why would the BSA cater to <1% and abandon the will of 99% of the people… how foolish would that be…..

      • All we need is love // February 11, 2013 at 9:14 pm //

        From the 1914 Scoutmaster’s Handbook:

        “The Scout Movement is not antagonistic to any civic enterprise, but rather seeks to cooperate with all other good movements in the interest of the boy. The Movement is wholly non-sectarian and plans to work with every sect and creed alike; it is non-military, and seeks to promote Peace Scouting and to develop educational character-building for good citizenship. It is wholly non-partisan. It cannot favor one interest against another and cannot countenance interference on any debatable questions, whether social, religious or political.”

      • Wallace,

        Those are some bold claims to make. You will need to provide evidence that all heterosexuals are ‘repulsed’ by gays and lesbians, and that gays and lesbians make up less that 1% of the population. I wish you the best of luck in this endeavor.

  65. I am tired as a Christian giving into everyone. If you do not like a private organizations values then make or join your own. If this ruling passes I see the Boy Scouts of America coming to an end. So kiss 103 years good bye. I will not accept nor will I teach my children to accept this. If I wanted to be a cattle farmer I would go out of business if all I had was Bulls.

    • Sean, I think if a person is part of an organization, it makes sense that they would have an opinion on various issues facing the organization, and that they would advocate within the organization for what they see as positive change.

      Many, many people over the last 20-30 years have reevaluated same-sex attraction as they have learned more about the individuals affected by it. Many Christians have studied and prayed about it, and come to the conclusion that shunning folks because of this sin (if they believe it to be such) is not the kind, thoughtful, or moral way to proceed. In such circumstances, it’s normal and appropriate for people to consider whether the organizations to which they belong should change in response to these now more nuanced perspectives on the issue.

      It’s a *good* thing when members of an organization speak up when they feel something can be changed for the better. We don’t have to agree that they are right in terms of the changes they want, but if an organization is going to survive in the long term, it needs members to speak up when they feel they have a perspective worth considering.

      • Are you saying that your going to rewrite God’s Word Eagle Mom? I don’t think you have the authority?? No! I know you don’t have the authority… If you think ignoring sinful behavior is the answer and you encourage anyone to be disobedient to His Word then do you think you’ll be taking responsibility for their sins when they stand before God in His judgement? When the look behind them at that moment of their judgement and say “but EagleMom said it was ok” do you think you’ll be standing there to vouch for their behavior.. I think each person has a personal responsibility to mold their lives to His Biblical Principles and seek forgiveness for what those Principles reveal to all of us as His sinful behavior.. I really don’t think what people over the last 20-30 years is going to be any less sinful than it was 1000 years ago or 1000 years from now… His Word is Truely Timeless.. I wonder if you simply want to be another people pleaser… I wouldn’t want to be responsible for leading someone away from their opportunity of their eternal life with God??

    • I am tired as a Christian of giving in to fundamentalists’ interpretations dictating the lives of everyone else.

      As an aside, from this angle, all you have is bull.

      • It would be interesting to see how you interpret God’s Word with regard to Homosexual Behavior.. The words are sharp and clear.. Why would God have created a man and a woman to be made the way they are.. Do you believe he made a man to be with a man sexually and a woman to be with a woman sexually? For what Heavenly purpose.. Do you think Sexual Love is the ultimate love He wants us to find in this life? How does your Christian Denomination interpret the parts of God’s Word that deal very clearly and specifically with this fundamental issue of Godliness?? You either choose to surrender and submit to His biblical principles for living a Godly life or accept that when you choose not to then you’ve sinned against God.. How else do you find salvation and accept His promise of an everlasting life with Him.. And that’s His true Gracious Gift promised to all of us that choose to follow His way through His Son’s Blood…

        • First off, Wallace, thank you for asking how my faith understands the Bible when common parlance suggests that it is speaking about the modern notion of constitutively conditioned, identity constitutive homosexuality.

          Before I begin though, I would like to assure you I do not expect you to subscribe to my beliefs. I would also ask that you not expect me to subscribe to yours. No Scout or Scouter should be expected to hold something against their conscience.

          The Hebrew word toevah, in English translated “abomination,” does not signify something intrinsically evil like rape or theft discussed elsewhere in Leviticus, but something ritually unclean for Jews, like eating pork or having intercourse during menstruation. A prohibition against grave sexual sins like prostitution uses the word zimah, appearing in Lev 19:29. The Greek translation categorizes it under infringement of ritual purity rather than under violations of law or justice.

          A purely homosexual interpretation of the story of Sodom can be traced to Ambrose, Augustine, and Gregory the Great, when the story of Sodom included the concept of divine punishment for sins of the flesh, scelera carnis. Isa. 3:9, Jer. 23:14, Ezek. 16:49-50, Ecclus. 16:8 and Matt. 10:14-15 all advance theories of pride, greed, and contempt for strangers. Even an explicitly sexual reading in 2 Peter 1:10 is not concerned with homosexual acts.

          Romans 1 is intended to condemn Gentiles for their general infidelity; there was a time when monotheism was offered to or known by the Romans, but they rejected it (19-23). The point of Romans 1 is to stigmatize people who have rejected their calling and gotten off the true path they were once on. It would completely undermine the argument if the persons in question were not naturally inclined to the opposite sex as Paul says people are naturally inclined to monotheism. What caused the Romans to sin was not that they lacked what Paul considered proper inclinations but that they had them: they held the truth, but suppressed it in unrighteousness (18) because “they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer,” (28). Also, “against” is somewhat of a misleading translation of the preposition “παρά.” In the New Testament usage, “παρά” connotes not “in opposition to” (expressed by “κατά”), but “more than” or “in excess of.”

          Two words in 1 Corinthians 6:9 and one in 1 Timothy 1:10 have been taken at least since the early twentieth century to indicate that “homosexuals” will be excluded from the kingdom of heaven. Malakos, used in 1 Cor 6:9, is a common Greek word meaning “soft,” and is frequently understood as weak willed, debauched, licentious, loose, wanting in self-control, unrestrained, or wanton. Contemporary writings use it to describe opposite-sex lusts. The best evidence suggests Arsenokoitai meant “male prostitute” well into the fourth century. In 1 Tim 1:10, it is next to andrapodistes, which can be translated to ‘kidnappers’ or ‘slave-traders.’ One aim of the slave trade was to provide prostitutes for brothels; this could suggest that Paul is condemning a very specific and exploitative sexual system rather than gay sex.

          Secondly, you bring up the notion of Natural Law. This question exposes a struggle between two understandings of nature in the debate on Christian sexual ethics. In one, nature is generic and functions as an allegedly objective norm. People may feel and act differently than this norm, but what they do is against nature, and the solution to the issue of their behavior not matching the norm is a submission and reconnection to ‘true nature.’ In the other, nature is personalized and subjective but also functions as a norm. If one’s nature is a certain way, and it does no harm to others, it is one’s right, or even duty, to behave accordingly. Thus, homosexuality is seen as natural by some and against nature by others. The direct theological reading of biological facts of heterosexual intercourse as immediately expressing the will of God, and subsequent normalization for all humanity of such facts and characteristics, makes it impossible even to consider the possibility that sexual intimacy of gay persons might be a valuable expression of human love. However, human involvement in correcting and changing what is commonly considered nature or natural is an aspect of almost all cultural activity and is theologically based on the idea that the nature we live in and are a part of is in the process of becoming the Kingdom of God. The belief that God’s presence is in the physical mechanisms of conception and pregnancy has the tendency to make nature as it is understood at a certain moment in history the direct expression of God’s will. In the older tradition of natural law, as with Thomas Aquinas, the most important aspect was directionality, as in the tendency toward fulfillment of purpose and toward good. The purpose of human beings was to become happy by searching for and realizing the common good, which is achieved in a relationship with God. Ergo, no mechanism or aspect of nature can be seen in itself be seen as a direct expression of God’s power and will because a moral analysis must include an assessment of directionality toward goodness.

          An inclusive and morally directional definition of sexuality would be “the expression of the natural human urge to bond together, to fulfill each other’s longings, to enjoy each other’s company and each other’s fulfillment.” This definition recognizes that sexuality is not simply a categorical series of acts, but a form of communion between persons in their entirety. From this perspective, no specific forms of sexual behavior are in-themselves natural or unnatural, much like other areas of human life; if it builds enduring and humanizing bonds of mutual obligation and respect in which eros becomes an expression of agape, it contributes to the good. It is not because ‘people who are gay can’t help it or change’ that gay sexuality should be accepted, but rather because it opens up possibilities for expressing and cultivating goodness by contributing to human happiness in relationships that have been hidden and repressed. This inclusive definition promotes a theology directed toward fulfilling and cultivating the world as God’s creation.

          I hope you can see how our religious views are similar, and how they are different. Again, there are Scouts and Scouters that do not even share the texts and traditions as us, and neither of us can expect them to follow our laws, even if we are convinced they are from God.

          Christ’s peace.

        • jackmichaelson also commented earlier “I am tired as a Christian of giving in to fundamentalists’ interpretations dictating the lives of everyone else.
          As an aside, from this angle, all you have is bull.”
          HERE IS A BLUNT ANSWER:
          To all of your pro LBGT people out there who say it is mean spirited to issue a rebuke to false statements God disagrees with you:
          25 But to those who rebuke the wicked will be delight, And a good blessing will come upon them.
          Prov 24:25
          4 Do not answer a fool according to his folly, Lest you also be like him.
          5 Answer a fool as his folly deserves, Lest he be wise in his own eyes.
          Prov 26:4,5

          jackmichaelson, you are the Master of Bull. You claim you are an Eagle Scout and Catholic theologian, fully supportive of the Boy Scouts and its gay and straight members. What you are is a radical activist and promoter of LBGT lifestyle. Your so called theological background is flawed to say the least. To say that God’s Word does not condemn homosexuality is radical in itself. You use other writings of other promoters of homosexuality which is taking the Hebrew and Greek text out of context.
          You obviously are a student of the extremist John J. McNeill, “Homosexuality: Challenging the Church to Grow” and others who are heretics and an Enemies of the Cross. Your postings seem to be out of McNeill’s pages. I will be glad to provide a line by line rebuke of this by real Bible scholars.
          You use extra Biblical authority and make your statements as if Paul and others were just men writing their own thoughts. You fail to quote His Word that He is the author of all Scripture Old and New Testament.
          You call any Christian a Fundamentalist that disagrees with your belief in sodomy. All true believers accept the Truth of Scripture and for thousands of years sodomy is homosexuality, lesbians and bestiality.

          15 “Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves. 16 “You will aknow them by their fruits.
          Matthew 7:15.16a

          Proponents of this interpretation say the understanding of Genesis 19 as referring to homosexuality arose in the intertestamental period primarily as the result of the books of Jubilees and Josephus. There are even some who try to connect this story with other ancient myths about hospitality.

          18 I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God shall add to him the plagues which are written in this book; 19 and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the tree of life and from the holy city, which are written in this book.
          20 He who testifies to these things says, “Yes, I am coming quickly.” Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.
          Rev 25:18-20
          Rom 1:26–27 is the strongest condemnation of homosexual actions. Rom 1:26 deals with lesbianism (homosexual relationships between women), while 1:27 treats male homosexuality. This is the only text in Scripture that mentions female homosexuality. This passage teaches that homosexual practices are evidences of God’s judgment on those who reject his revelation. What part of this sdo you not understand:
          26 FOR THIS REASON GOD GAVE THEM OVER TO DEGRADING PASSIONS; FOR THEIR WOMEN EXCHANGED THE NATURAL FUNCTION FOR THAT WHICH IS UNNATURAL, 27 AND IN THE SAME WAY ALSO THE MEN ABANDONED THE NATURAL FUNCTION OF THE WOMAN AND BURNED IN THEIR DESIRE TOWARD ONE ANOTHER, MEN WITH MEN COMMITTING INDECENT ACTS AND RECEIVING IN THEIR OWN PERSONS THE DUE PENALTY OF THEIR ERROR.
          Romans 1:26,27

          Perversion of the Gospel and Warnings:

          6 I am amazed that you are so quickly deserting Him who called you by the grace of Christ, for a different gospel;
          7 which is really not another; only there are some who are disturbing you, and want to distort the gospel of Christ.
          8 But even though we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to that which we have preached to you, let him be accursed (gk: anathema).
          9 As we have said before, so I say again now, if any man is preaching to you a gospel contrary to that which you received, let him be accursed
          (gk: anathema).
          10 For am I now seeking the favor of men, or of God? Or am I striving to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a bond-servant of Christ. Gal 1:6-10

        • You know Taylor, you have a point. Do not answer a fool according to his folly, Lest you also be like him. Answer a fool as his folly deserves, Lest he be wise in his own eyes.

          Have a blessed day.

        • I am glad you fianlly understand that.

        • Taylor, You have posted a lot of scripture here. I’ve been doing some digging, and found that there was copious biblical justification given for segregation (back in the day).

          How have you come to a point where you are comfortable ignoring one set of directives, but so strongly defend the other?

        • Liberals try and equate homosexuality with the Civil Rights movement. Although they are both moral issues homosexuality is a choice behavior whereas being a black minority was and is not a choice. It is funny that the vast majority of blacks resent this. Slavery was legal in early America, but was immoral and the Declaration of Independence was the turning point in America regarding that and religious liberty. Slavery was a state that existed, but the Bible never condones it.

        • Taylor, you state, “Slavery was a state that existed, but the Bible never condones it.” Methinks you need to reread your Bible. Among a myriad of other passages, how about:
          “However, you may purchase male or female slaves from among the foreigners who live among you. You may also purchase the children of such resident foreigners, including those who have been born in your land. You may treat them as your property, passing them on to your children as a permanent inheritance. You may treat your slaves like this, but the people of Israel, your relatives, must never be treated this way.” (Leviticus 25:44-46 NLT)

          This (and so many other requirements in the Biblical books of law – when is the last time you helped stone a woman who was not a virgin at marriage as demanded by Deuteronomy 22?) is why many Christian denominations consider at Jesus’ comand to love one another as more critical and relevant to our lives today.

          Each of our personal interpretations of the Bible (or other holy books, for those who are non-Christians) notwithstanding, however, Scouting is non-denominational and we are charged to be tolerant of one another’s faiths. I will not tell you that you have to believe that homosexuality is ok but I will ask that you stop telling me that I have to discriminate within my unit when my faith teaches love and tolerance.

        • MT Momma, methinks my Bible reading and studying is fine thank you. God’s Word has only one interpretation, however you can choose to read into it what you want, that does not change Truth or the Word. There are many applications of Scripture, but only one interpretation. Slavery in the Old Testament was an accepted practice when God ordered His people to take out certain heathen countries or groups. God is not only a God of love, but God is Love. But, God is also a Righteousness Judge and our Lord Jesus Christ came to fulfill the Law. Jesus is the same today, yesterday and forever. We as Christians are to make moral judgments and we are to call out and correct those who make false statements and who try and rewrite the Word of God.
          You are trying to steer people away from the issue and that is homosexuality (sodomy) and not slavery or a civil rights issue.
          There is nowhere in Scripture that says we are to embrace another Gospel.
          8 But even though we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to that which we have preached to you, let him be accursed (gk: anathema).
          Gal 1:6
          Radicals are the most intolerant people in America. God exhorts us to expose false teaching especially where His Word is involved.

          5 “For this you know with certainty, that no immoral or impure person or covetous man, who is an idolater, has an inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God.
          11 AND DO NOT PARTICIPATE IN THE UNFRUITFUL DEEDS OF DARKNESS, BUT INSTEAD EVEN EXPOSE THEM;
          12 for it is disgraceful even to speak of the things which are done by them in secret.
          13 But all things become visible when they are exposed by the light, for everything that becomes visible is light.”
          Ephesians 5:5,11,12,13

          Jesus said, “Know The Truth And The Truth Will Set You Free”
          John 8:32

        • Well, Taylor, you were the one who stated that the Bible didn’t condone slavery. Apparently somewhere you missed some scripture, since it is pretty clear that there are numerous passages which do. (You can even sell your daughter into slavery as far as Exodus is concerned.)

          I do not, however, want to get into a debate over the Bible with you – regardless of what your faith tells you about the validity of your interpretation of the Bible, it is not the only interpretation. And even if all Christians agreed on the meaning of every passage in the Bible, it would be irrelevant to this discussion as the BSA is not a Christian organization. That is the issue that I keep trying to steer us back to. The BSA does not endorse any specific denomination or even any particular faith. Anyone who professes a belief in a higher power is welcome to join. As such, and since the Scout Law tells us that we are to respect each other’s faith and beliefs, you have no right to tell me that my unit has to discriminate against homosexuals when my faith tells me that it is immoral to do so.

        • MT Momma, you can slice it and dice any way you want. But, God’s Word is God’s Word and there is only one interpretation. The BSA was founded on Christian Principles and God ‘s Word.
          That Is The Fact.
          The Boys Scouts of America was incorporated FEBRUARY 8, 1910.
          Sir Robert Baden-Powell began the movement in England two years prior.
          In the pamphlet Scouting & Christianity, 1917, Baden-Powell wrote:

          “Scouting is nothing less than applied Christianity.”

          The Scout Handbook, 5th edition (1948) explained a Scout’s “Duty to God”:
          “You worship God regularly with your family in your church or synagogue. You try to follow the religious teachings that you have been taught, and you are faithful in your church school duties, and help in church activities.

          Above all you are faithful to Almighty God’s Commandments.

          Most great men in history have been men of deep religious faith. Washington knelt in the snow to pray at Valley Forge. Lincoln always sought Divine guidance before each important decision. Be proud of your religious faith”……
          You can choose to do what you want, but God will not be mocked.

        • Taylor, if you read Lord Baden-Powell’s Scouting for Boys, upon which the entire Scouting movement is based, you will find that there are some mentions of God, two mentions of Christian/Christianity, and no mentions of Christ or the Bible. Scouting in America was based on a combination of B-P’s Scouting program plus a couple of existing American programs (Daniel Carter Beard’s Sons of Daniel Boone and Ernest Thompson Seton’s Woodcraft Indians).

          If you check the 1911 Boy Scout Handbook, you will find that, “The aim of the Boy Scouts is to supplement the various existing educational agencies, and to promote the ability in boys to do things for themselves and others. It is not the aim to set up a new organization to parallel in its purposes others already established. The opportunity is afforded these organizations, however, to introduce into their programs unique features appealing to interests which are universal among boys. The method is summed up in the term Scoutcraft, and is a combination of observation, deduction, and handiness, or the ability to do things. Scoutcraft includes instruction in First Aid, Life Saving, Tracking, Signaling, Cycling, Nature Study, Seamanship, Campcraft, Woodcraft, Chivalry, Patriotism, and other subjects. This is accomplished in games and team play, and is pleasure, not work, for the boy. All that is needed is the out-of-doors, a group of boys, and a competent leader.” It also states, “Faithfulness to duty is another one of the scout virtues. When it is a scout’s duty to do something, he dare not shirk. A scout is faithful to his own interest and the interests of others. He is true to his country and his God.” The clearest evidence that it was not founded as a Christian organization is where it talks about how to become a Boy Scout: “The easiest way to become a boy scout is to join a patrol that has already been started. This patrol may be in a Sunday School, Boys’ Brigade, Boys’ Club, Young Men’s Christian Association, Young Men’s Hebrew Association, Young Men’s Catholic Association, or any other organization to which you may belong. If there is no patrol near you, get some man interested enough to start one by giving him all the information.” Pretty sure you can take it to the bank that members of the Young Men’s Hebrew Association were not Christians.

          The 1911 Handbook also explains the 12th point of the Scout Law:
          “12. A scout is reverent.
          He is reverent toward God. He is faithful in his religious duties and respects the convictions of others in matters of custom and religion.”

          Based on what I have read from you so far, I am pretty certain that no amount of reason or evidence is going to change your conviction that the BSA is a Christian organization and that all members must follow your brand of Christianity so this is the last that I will be discussing with you on the topic.

        • specifically where do you find a charge to be tolerant of another faith and specifically how do you define tolerance? How do you think a Christian should respond to someone who chooses to attack the freedom of the BSA to make its own policies and a member of the BSA who also agrees with the membership policies of the BSA ? Do you think God is tolerant of sinful behavior? Do you think people who defend the BSA are without justification if they believe membership should be contingent in a belief in God a belief that homosexuality is immoral behavior and isn’t nature of the men the BSA chooses freely to want to be the leaders of the boys their promoting to parents to be the type of male role model they want to lead their troops and councils..?

        • Walla e/Wallace, the charge to be tolerant of the faith of others comes from the explanation of the 12th point of the Scout law from the 1911 Boy Scout Handbook and continuing today on scouting.org:
          “Reverent – A Scout is reverent toward God. He is faithful in his religious duties. He respects the beliefs of others.”
          http://www.scouting.org/faq/alumni.aspx

          To respect:
          9. to hold in esteem or honor: I cannot respect a cheat.
          10. to show regard or consideration for: to respect someone’s rights.
          11. to refrain from intruding upon or interfering with: to respect a person’s privacy.
          which is actually a greater charge than just to tolerate (to allow the existence, presence, practice, or act of without prohibition or hindrance; permit.)

          I think a Christian should respond with love for one another in all situations. I think Grace covers God’s tolerance. Most importantly, I believe that there are many faiths included in the BSA and that no one faith has the right to tell others what they should believe is immoral or that they must discriminate against others.

          As I said to Taylor, it is my belief that no amount of explaining my position will change your conviction that the BSA is a Christian organization and that your brand of Christianity is the one that we must all follow. As such, I am done spending my time trying to convince you otherwise.

        • It’s all one Word Kevin; God’s. It’s a guide for everyone to follow to if they choose to follow a life that leads to an eternal life with Gid in heaven.. your freedom to choose or not to choose; mine too and I’ve made my choice.. It’s all pretty fundamental; elemental.. The Scouts believe in God; one God.. the God in the Holy Bible.. there is only one God.. that belief led the scouts to exclude people who choose to engage in homosexuality, atheism, and agnostism.. but not those that choose to change their minds about all that and God can lead a person to change their mind about living a sinful life and grow closer to Him with a more pure love.. that’s not evil.. that’s not hateful, that’s through forgiveness by accepting His blood as payment for their freedom.. its spiritual love; not physical and eternal life is far more important than the BSA or anything else on earth.. but it takes a surrender of yourself and a desire to change your life to become cheerful in trying to mold your life to follow biblical principles… scouts want men who will teach boys His ways by leading with true and honest hearts a life that desires to accept His way and His Word as the only way.. its fundamental truth.. fundamental love.. there’s nothing wrong with wanting that and wanting that for everyone.. you can choose and so have I; I won’t change my heart; nothing on this earth would be worth it; I actually know this…

        • We’re definitely talking past each other. I’ve made my point, and I do realize I won’t change your mind. I hope some are open to thinking this through.

          I have found that every one of these discussions (and I’ve been around this subject in several forums, several times) has taught me something.

          Taylor and Walla e/Wallace, I disagree with you, but I wish you well.

        • There is only one interpretation of the bible? Then why on earth are there so many different denominations of christianity?

        • Walla e
          February 12, 2013 @ 5:05 pm
          “specifically where do you find a charge to be tolerant of another faith and specifically how do you define tolerance?”

          I find a charge to be tolerant in the Scout Law. It states A Scout is Reverent. A Scout is reverent toward God. He is faithful in his religious duties. HE RESPECTS THE BELIEFS OF OTHERS.

          Nowhere in the Scout Law does it say that the christian god that Walla e believes in is the one true god that all scouts should be reverent to. Since the Scout Law is our authority here, it supercedes anything that is printed in Walla e’s bible when it comes to scouting.

      • If you choose to consider and call God’s Holy Word Bull then good luck with eternity jackmichaelson… everyone’s free choice to live a Godly life or not.. you can’t trick or fool the truth; it just is what it is…. I’m not interested in changing your mind; you can freely choose to follow the truths of His Word or not.. I’m interested in sharing the truths of His Word and not giving manipulation of His Word unanswered freedom… Funny how aggressive militant homosexuals try to dictate my culture to me; try to convince people evil behavior is normal and justified biblically… good luck with that too.. The Holy Spirit reveals the truth to Christians and Christians make up the vast majority of the membership of the BSA.. And I can sleep easy knowing that truth… your one of a tiny tiny minority with truly a very weak voice on this issue.. without a corrupt media to amplify the aggressive militant homosexual agenda nobody would ever hear a sound because there just aren’t enough people needing to be involved with the issue to make it of any significance in our culture… But people are waking up to the corruption in our mainstream media too and turning them off and turning toward a more honest media… Funny how truth is truly timeless… it always rises to the surface in time…. And it always will..

  66. Also nice move on the BSA to put this vote off until May. That will force everyone to pay their dues before the vote and most will have already paid for camp. DO I GET A REFUND IF THE VOTE DOES NOT GO MY WAY?

  67. “Unworthy”. This is the term bandied about with suck ease by those who call themselves “Loving Christians”. Such an oxymoronic term “loving Christian.”

    Know this. Homosexuals, and the more despised atheists, are already in your ranks as both leaders and scouts. You call us friends and we fill the many positions the “loving Christian” fathers and mothers are too lazy or selfish to fill. We simply keep our mouths shut about who we are. Typical that Christians seem to like it that way.

    You also call us all types of vile and disgusting names around campfires not knowing that we sit amongst you, not knowing that you insult the very people helping you to keep your atavistic organization going.

    So, as one such person who has been told that I am the epitomy of all that is wrong, evil, vile and corrupt in the world while doing more for Christian children that their own parents are will do, I tell you now, I am done.

    I am done supporting parents that not willing to put forth the effort for their own children that I am willing to put forth for strangers.

    I am done listening to one vile comment after another about someone like me who actually lives the standards that most Christians and scouts simply pay lip service to.

    I will also no longer fear threats against my children for simply having a father like me.

    I am an atheist.

    I am finished doing anything for the scouts.

    You want me gone, so be it.

    No “clean, decent, Christian hetero” parent, as you call them, will fill my place. They are simply, too lazy to back up with actions what they claim to support publicly.

    • Gene -

      Dads like you who are willing to do the hard work that makes Scouting what it is are hard to find. I hear your frustration. But please consider staying. Scouting is changing, and some folks have a rough time with change, and sometimes that comes out in their behavior. You can help.

      A scout is Friendly and Kind. Gently call others on it when they speak ill of people different than themselves. Call them on it when they rely on stereotypes to judge others. Call them on it when they speak from ignorance. You don’t have to share your personal beliefs to do this. You just have to let go of your fear of being shunned or ousted. Once you’ve faced this possibility, and made your peace with it, you can be a powerful force for change. Poet Audre Lourde said, “When I dare to be powerful, to use my strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid. …I have come to believe over and over again that what is most important to me must be spoken, made verbal and shared, even at the risk of having it bruised or misunderstood.” A Scout is Brave.

      Be open with your boys about what you’re feeling. Help them to learn how and when to gently call others on their behavior. Be an example to them of how peaceful change can happen, one person at a time. Scouting benefits from having a wide range of participants, from a wide array of backgrounds and beliefs. Scouting is not owned by any one belief of what makes a person “reverent” or “morally straight”. A Scout is friendly and kind. Stand up for this truth. Work for change.

    • So hateful and so wrong… You are so wrongful… Thanks for leaving the organization; I don’t think we were a good fit for you.. We don’t have to be a good fit for everyone but everyone is welcome to join and follow the scouting program which will lead you to enjoy some very wholesome and Godly experiences.. It’s been all pluses for me from the time I was a boy growing in scouts and earning my Eagle Rank through my time as a leader helping and watching my son and other scouts now earn their Eagle Ranks… Its been very rewarding for me as a leader… An experience I wouldn’t have missed for the world… Think your the first angry person to call me names? No.. But that’s ok because I don’t feel the same way toward you… You certainly have a lot of labels for people… I wonder what you call yourself.. oh yea.. an atheist… and that’s your free choice.. good luck with that one…

    • We have plenty of qualified leaders and organizations that will step in and fill any voids left by people or organizations that currently support and choose to not support the BSA in the future.. As an atheist it must have been very difficult to stand up and recite the Oath and other Godly aspects woven all throughout the Scouting Program.. You should be happy to leave.. And I have met some of the hardest working, exciting adults leading the BSA units I’ve been involved in.. Maybe when you leave your unit will improve its spirits… God Blesses Godly people… and He always keeps His arms open to you if you ever choose freely to change your mind about your faith; I hope you do… I hope you find eternal life too… its free; just a promise away…. yours Gene S

  68. We should adopted the old policy of do not ask and do not tell.

  69. Submitted to BSA and duplicated on The Patriot Post:

    Your media release re criteria for openly homosexual members & leaders appears to be nothing short of capitulation to an ardent and noisy minority who, with the help of decidedly biased media outlets, hold in contempt the long and successful tradition of “morally straight” that has made the BSA such a winner in contrast with an increasingly self-centered and hedonistic populus.

    Please bear in mind that most anything -goes “progressives” so quick to hurl accusations of bigotry are also those who would readily surrender the U.S. Constitution to the U.N.; removing our First and Second Amendments and empowering a juggernaut bureaucracy more onerous than any we have ever known.

    Scouting being one of the last firm bulwarks against such incursions against our liberties, and all the more potent because of its training of future generations, allowing homosexuals in carte blanche will indeed be the camels’ nose under the tent; goodbye Scouting as we know it.

    Recently we have seen “under God” omitted from U.S. dignitaries’ publicly recited Pledge of Allegiance, as well as aggressive efforts to redefine marriage. Will BSA eliminate or merely redefine “morally straight?”

    If so, it will indeed be the proverbial bloodless coup; membership will plummet, BSA will be emasculated, and the local holdouts will be relentlessly attacked for defending their values: The perfect Divide and Conquer strategy.

    Bear in mind that the cry for “tolerance” is followed by a cry for “endorsement,” and then “mandate,” with the ultimate objective being to dilute, demean, degrade and finally depose traditional values. We must not surrender this front.

    And to quote from http://www.dennisprager.com : Sowing internal dissent is the best way to destroy an organization. That’s the what the Left is trying to do the Scouts. They may succeed. Why are they so bent on destroying the Scouts? The Scouts don’t make Leftists.

    • “The Scouts don’t make Leftists.” Nor do they make Right-Wingers. Scouting is the premier leadership program for young men, not a political organization. There are plenty of liberals in Scouting.

      “Why are they so bent on destroying the Scouts?” They aren’t, they want to participate on an equal basis, without being judged for things that have nothing to do with the Scouting program.

      • Scouts don’t have a patent on building a youth organization; they’ve just built the best one I’ve ever been involved in and I’ve been involved for many many years… If you love the quality of the scouts and value everything it is then why would you ever want to be trying to break something that’s fixed??? Thanks for your support in saying that Scouting is a premier leadership program for young men; but they aren’t young men.. their just boys.. very impressionable.. and they don’t need to be exposed to all the efforts of what homosexual leaders are going to be trying to confront them with as the aggressive militant homosexuals try to normalize to boys what their heart is going to tell them is wrongful.. Does anyone understand that homosexuality is simply repulsive behavior.. that includes all aspects of homosexual intimacy and there is simply no place for it in the scouting program and YES there will be homosexuals who feel they need to prove who they are to everyone around them.. I see it now and its repulsive to me.. why wouldn’t it happen in scouting to if the BSA permits homosexuals to become members of scouting??? It will happen.. Don’t need a crystal ball to see that coming and then units will collapse because parents will pull their kids and leaders will walk away from it all.. And the tiny number of militant homosexual aggressors who blow through a big megaphone called the media will have been successful in terrorizing the vast majority and destroying the very premier youth organization you consider the scouts to be…

        • Your heart =/= everyone else’s heart. I know this is difficult, but not everyone will agree with you. Not everyone thinks that God feels the way you believe God to feel. And no matter how much you are absolutely certain that you are right, and for all I know, you could be, that should not mandate belief or action on the part of other Scouts or Scouters.

        • You don’t have to believe me.. If your able to read and comprehend and your heart’s full of the Holy Spirit you’ll find the truth yourself.. Last time I heard His Holy Word is still the number one selling book in the WORLD.. This isn’t a me thing.. and I know only certain people will choose to answer His call to be Godly men.. but its a choice we each have the responsibility to make for ourselves.. you can choose to seek an eternal life with Him by following His way to Him through His written Word or you can choose to not seek an eternal life.. I didn’t write the book; see my name on any of the pages?? I just try to mold my life to what He calls me to do… And that’s what the scouting program calls me to do too… part of it all… You don’t have to be Godly but you have to be Godly to honestly join the BSA or everything they are will only be a torment to you… why would you choose that.. God made the BSA Great by blessing it for its obedience to His Word… He’s ok with taking that blessing away and letting it all crumble.. He is infinite and patient.. There will be another Godly organization to take its place just like there will always be Godly men born to take my place one day… It’s timeless and far more infinite and powerful than me… And you know what jackmichaleson; a lot more people believe like me than you even want to begin to think… This is the thinking of the majority of scouts… don’t fool yourself to believing anything different or your just lying to yourself and a good scout is honest too….

      • I influence many youth with my ideals.. As a leader its my responsibility to let the scouts know that I’m a Godly Christian Man… I wear my faith everywhere I go and never check it in at the door.. Why wouldn’t I; I’m a Citizen of the United States of America and proud and thankful for my Constitutional Rights… paid for in Blood…

        • Wallace,

          You’ve (inadvertently) made a very important point by attacking the Rabbi.

          Once you’ve decided to be exclusionary, you’ve placed yourself on a slippery slope. You’ve decided to hate and exclude, now you have to decide who you want to hate and exclude. Would you exclude African-Americans? Red heads? Jews? Hispanics? Anyone under 4 feet tall? Should everyone who participates be required to speak English? Should everyone in a BSA unit be a US citizen?

          Once you’ve decided that you are going to discriminate and demonize people, you’re really just deciding where to place the line. You can’t be only half-a-bigot.

        • “I wear my faith everywhere I go and never check it in at the door” … that tells me that you’re carrying on an agenda with your unit that is not part of the purpose of the BSA and is in fact in violation of the declaration of religious principle.

          Perhaps that’s why you’re so concerned that the LGBT community will try to indoctrinate youth, because that’s what you’re doing?

  70. Mike Kennedy // February 10, 2013 at 1:51 pm //

    As a Scouting volunteer for 12 years and the father of 2 Eagle Scouts I offer an Eagle Scout’s perspective: http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/why-did-i-challenge-the-boy-scouts-anti-gay-policy-because-i-am-a-loyal-scout/2013/02/08/346ebab2-7159-11e2-a050-b83a7b35c4b5_story.html?fb_ref=sm_btn_fb

    Maybe some of the people who post here should take a moment and listen.

    • Here is another Eagle Scouts perspective.. As a boy I lost my father when I was 7.. My mother was busy raising 4 children and trying to work a job so she didn’t have time to spend doing some of the things a family with two parents might be able to do.. Scouting became my second home and my scoutmaster became a quasi father to me.. my fellow scouters were my brothers and I still have a bond with all of them and occasionally I’m blessed to spend time with some of them.. When I was a boy if our troop was led by two homosexual men I would have quit.. I know I would have quit.. And my friends would have quit too.. children aren’t blind and they don’t mix words with political correctness etc… we would have all quit and lost out on our opportunity to share in the scouting experience.. Do you think young boys are going to be tolerant to the behavior of homosexuals.. No.. It’s a volunteer organization; their going to quit.. So the vast majority of boys are going to quit and miss out on an opportunity to be a scout and to maybe become an Eagle Scout as I did.. Call me whatever politically correct nasty name you want to call me but one thing you can’t say about what I’ve said is that any of this isn’t the truth because it is… boys and their parents are not going to join the BSA if they don’t offer the level of program their offering today… My son recently earned His Eagle Rank; I’m very proud of him… I’m very proud to be an Eagle Scout too… Your truly wrongful in trying to make Godly men and boys feel badly for standing up for God’s Word with regard to what Morally Straight truly means.. And do you think a true Eagle Scout’s character is one to be swayed from His Truth because of what any man says??? I hope not.. That’s not the character the Scouting program nurtures and builds… Your wrongful Mike Kennedy… It’s just a matter of truth.. You might become a hero to certain people as you seek to please them but the truth isn’t on your side no matter how many people you get to speak to your cause… The truth lies in His Written Word and that’s not going to be changed.. it is a timeless Word because Truths Never Change… They simply don’t

      • Here’s the thing, Wallace (and, honestly, I am not sure why I am ‘feeding’ you, but I feel that I need to respond…) – despite what you apparently believe, Scouting does not belong to any particular denomination or interpretation of the Bible. As a matter of fact, it is not even a Christian organization. As stated on scouting.org’s page on the Scout Law, “Reverent – A Scout is reverent toward God. He is faithful in his religious duties. He respects the beliefs of others.”

        Nothing in the Scout Oath or Law require a person to believe in Christ or Christian scriptures. They require a belief in a higher power. Even among mainstream Christian denominations, there is a huge spectrum of belief regarding homosexuality. I am not telling you that you have to believe that homosexuality is ok. However, part of respecting the beliefs of others means accepting that others can disagree with your beliefs and can still be moral individuals.

        Food for thought for you from Lord Baden-Powell himself, “God is not some narrow-minded personage, as some people would seem to imagine, but a vast Spirit of Love that overlooks the minor differences of form and creed and denomination and which blesses every man who really tries to do his best, according to his lights, in His service.”

        • Don’t worry.. your not feeding me anything; I have a hard time believing you’ll ever say anything that I’ll ever take to heart… It’s apparent to me that this blog is becoming a place where aggressive militant homosexuals, atheists, and agnostics and their supporters have chosen to gather so I’ll have to entrench myself into the battle and continue contradicting lies with truths.. I’ll do it alone if that’s what I have to do; I have a heart to do so… It’s my organization… The BSA will loose a lot more than they’ll ever ever gain if they choose to turn their back on the Christians who represent the vast majority of their membership.. If they didn’t know this truth they would have changed the policy a long time ago.. Why would you turn your back on 99% of your membership in order to appease < 1% of the population??? that would be insanity…

        • I challenge you to read everything Baden-Powell has said about scouting.. don’t pick and choose.. put it all on this blog and let Baden-Powell’s full word speak for itself with regard to how he felt about scouting… my challenge to you MT-Momma… It is rooted in the Christian Faith…

        • “No man is much good unless he believes in God and obeys His laws. So every Scout should have a religion….Religion seems a very simple thing: First: Love and Serve God. Second: Love and serve your neighbour.” – (Scouting For Boys, 1908)

          “Religion is essential to happiness. This is not a mere matter of going to church, knowing Bible history, or understanding theology. Religion . . . means recognizing who and what is God, secondly, making the best of the life that He has given one and doing what He wants of us. This is mainly doing something for other people.”
          (Baden Powell, Rovering to Success 1930)

          “When asked where religion came into Scouting and Guiding, Baden-Powell replied, It does not come in at all. It is already there. It is a fundamental factor underlying Scouting and Guiding.” (Religion and the Boy Scout and Girl Guides Movement–an address, 1926).

          There are more but I believe this makes the point. This is why atheists and agnostics are not allowed. This is also why you cannot have a legitimate two tiered system that allows broad differences in behavior. There must be one standard applied equally throughout the whole program. It is clear that Powell believed that a young man and his leaders must live by the set standard or go away. He believed that essentially you change the person and not the standard. Many in this very forum believe the opposite. They believe that allowing any behavior is preferable to excluding those who are not worthy. Sadly, Scouting cannot be all things to all people and we should stop trying. We cannot right every perceived wrong nor should we. Sometimes we have to just say no.

        • Andrew, thank you for those quotes. The common thread, action-wise, seems to be “Love and serve your neighbor”, “doing something for other people”. These, in turn, are the common themes among the vast majority of world religions. Clearly, if you are welcoming those of differing faiths, and working side by side with them, you put the focus on this common thread – being kind, friendly, helpful, courteous. You don’t focus on the details where your faiths differ; you put those aside in order to work together. You give the Jew an alternative to bacon at breakfast, you allow the Muslim a break to pray five times a day, you make sure the Catholic has an alternative to meat on Fridays. You also “don’t sweat the small stuff”, leaving minor sins (which we all commit) between your fellow Scout and his God, especially if his actions are sinful in your religion and not in his.

          When it comes to this BSA policy, we seem to differ over which category homosexuality falls into. Is homosexuality as sin a core theme across diverse religions? Or it it a minor difference in the big scheme of things, that is largely between the Scout and his God? Is being homosexual such a dire sin to some folks that they simply cannot walk among or work alongside such sinners? Or is it part of the idea that none of us are without sin, and that as sinners we must avoid throwing stones at our fellow sinners?

          The nice thing about the proposed policy is that, at the troop level, these questions are left up to the CO. Each boy is held accountable for his own CO’s standards of morality. For some COs, this means that homosexual scouts will be considered immoral, and will not be welcome. For other COs, embracing such scouts will be the moral position; shunning them would be immoral. (In either case, sexual *behavior* in the context of scouting is absolutely unacceptable, regardless of the gender of either party.) Protocols for scenarios where both types of troops come together will have to be worked out, but the fact is that regardless of the policy there are gay people in scouting, and these protocols are likely to be a wise move regardless.

          I think the proposed policy is right in line with Baden-Powell’s vision for Scouting. It allows those of differing faiths, which take very different views on this topic, to work together in Scouting, serving their communities and doing things for others.

      • Under the proposed policy, your unit would have had the option to not allow homosexual leaders. If the majority of members of your unit would have quit if the leader had been gay, then the unit would likely have been closed to gay leaders anyway. If your unit did allow gay members, then you could have joined a troop that didn’t. See how that works? We CAN respect everyone’s beliefs.

    • Kevin, I’m somehow missing your reverence. I don’t see in you a Scout: just an LGBT apologist. It’s easy to cry “hatred & bigotry” when there is none in evidence. But shouting down or vilifying your opponent is not a cogent argument for your position. Besides, it is absurd to equate sexual behavior with ethnicity. I have met former gay folk, but never former black folk.

      You might have noticed that the kids molested by priests in the Roman Catholic Church were overwhelmingly male, so yes, while we recognize that not all gay or bi men are pedophiles, we also know that Scouting ranges from 5 years old to 21. In a society saturated with blatant sexual messages and personal electronic devices, BSA tries to offer some semblance of refuge from both. This is a good thing.

      With all due respect to my beloved gay friends and family members, I prefer we intersect and overlap in areas of life where it is MUTUALLY agreeable and beneficial, and that we avoid imposing ourselves upon one another where it is not.

      That, Kevin, is courtesy and respect, not hatred and bigotry.

  71. I had a committee member tell me today that he received an email to a survey from National regarding this issue. Anyone know anything about an actual survey sponsored by National?

    I have yet to hear of them actually surveying their adult membership.

    • I haven’t received a survey but in this day and age of electronic communication it wouldn’t be hard to survey every paid member of the BSA.. this would be inclusive of scouts over 16 years old.. jusy ask one question; yea or nea to changing the membership requirements.. i’d be interestes in seeing the results.. i’d want documentation that the results weren’t tampered with..

      • While the results of nation-wide survey of BSA’s membership would be interesting to see (and possibly even helpful to the national board), I do not think that such a “vote” or survey should be the sole deciding factor in this decision. We can not let majority rule trample minority rights.

        • The minority don’t have rights.. We live in a Democracy.. The US Constitution protects your rights and protects the rights of the BSA too..and the Supreme Court of the US even said that the BSA has the right to organize and operate a youth organization with the policies and standards they feel are important to fulfill their mission.. and the same Constitution and Supreme Court are there to protect your rights Kyle to build and protect your own youth organization if you feel so strongly about what you believe.. And if you don’t build your own youth organization then I guess you really didn’t feel as strongly about building a youth organization that reflected your ideals and maybe your real ambition is to simply try to destroy an organization that’s only exercising its constitutional rights to operate freely in a manner consistent with what our forefathers envisioned when they wrote the document over 200 years ago…

      • He sent me a link. Ended up being a link to the “Comments” form. But he did get the email while others did not.

      • Walla e, one of the nice things about this policy is that it essentially *is* a vote. If the vast majority of COs want the existing policy to remain in place, then very little will change. There may be a few troops in liberal areas who allow gay members, but those troops have been “don’t ask, don’t tell” all along.

        • localizing membership policies would be a disaster to unity and uniformity.. troops intermingle all the time at scouting functions and leaders will have no idea of the nature of other leaders who may be in a position of leadership over his scouts at those functions; i.e. summer camp, camporees, jamborees, merit badge colleges etc.. think the leaders of troops who choose to follow one set of membership policies should be different than the uniforms of troops that choose different policies for membership?? probably since they’ll no longer be uniform in fundamental ideals.. will one group recite one Scout Oath and the other a different Scout Oath.. the scouts will be divided and everyone knows what happens when a house is divided; why even go there just to appease a tiny tiny group if people??? totally ridiculous and totally unnecessary since the majority of registered scouts dont want this policy changed.. theirs a reason there’s been no vote of this issue; the answer would be no policy change.. National’s just too worried about lost revenue.. if they go against the will of the majority of the membership they’ll loose far far more than they’ll gain.. no PR’s going to hide the truth from the scouting membership and ultimately members will have their chance to vote when they choose to recharter or choose not to recharter.. there will be an election ultimately… Catholic and Baptists have already said if the membership policy is changed they won’t recharter their troops… how many more. just those two groups far far outweigh any benefit the BSA will realize from changing the membership policy…

  72. Rabbi David Saperstein // February 11, 2013 at 12:43 am //

    On behalf of the Union for Reform Judaism whose 900 congregations across North America encompass 1.5 million Reform Jews, the Central Conference of American Rabbis, with membership of more than 2000 Reform rabbis, I urge the Boy Scouts of America Board of Directors to end the discriminatory ban prohibiting gay scouts and scout leaders into the Boy Scouts of America.

    There was widespread excitement in our movement across North America when we learned that the BSA was reconsidering their policy, yet disappointment at the announcement to postpone the decision. That delay extends the time that the current discriminatory policy is in place. We recognize that deliberate and assiduous review is a part of any policy change; but we urge the BSA to take up the question as swiftly as possible. The cause of equality and justice is an urgent one. Justice delayed is justice denied.

    The promise of the Boy Scouts has always been to develop leadership, foster a sense of responsibility toward others, and strengthen the bonds of community. However, by continuing the exclusion of gay scouts and scout leaders these very goals are undermined. What does it say about leadership to discriminate against our neighbors, loved ones and friends? What does it teach about community to prevent those who may be different from participating in and sharing the values we espouse?

    It is perhaps most concerning when the cost of persistent prejudice against LGBT youth – bullying, discrimination, harassment, and tragically the high rate of suicide to which these too often lead – is taken into account. These young people, so frequently facing isolation in schools and in their family, need more outlets to build community, not fewer. The BSA’s policy of excluding gay scouts denies a population that has a lot to benefit from the Boy Scouts promise.

    That is why, in 1992, the Central Conference of American Rabbis called upon the Boy Scouts to end its discriminatory policy, and the North American Federation of Temple Youth called upon all Reform Jewish youth to divest from and refuse participation in the Boy Scouts of America so long as such discrimination continues. It is also why, in 2001, we recommended that Reform synagogues refrain from sponsoring or housing Boy Scout troops and packs that do discriminate. We look forward to the day we can encourage our congregations to return to their historical role in hosting BSA troops; indeed, we hope that day may be soon.

    Lifting the ban on gay scouts and scout leader would be a major step forward for the Boy Scouts. All people, regardless of their sexuality, are created B’tselem Elohim, in the divine image, and thus have a place in our communities. It would be troubling, however, if the national ban on gay scouts is lifted yet individual troops are permitted to discriminate. At this moment of reflection I urge the Boy Scouts of America to consider not only ending this nationwide ban but also adopting a national non-discrimination policy. That is the only way that we can ensure that no child is prevented from joining the troop of his choice.

    - Rabbi David Saperstein
    Director, Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism

    • What kind of a Christian are you? Oh, waitaminute…

    • I really question the value of what Reform Judaism.. Your out of line.. You have no right to try to dictate what a private organization does in this country anymore than I have the right to say that your form of Judaism has the right to ordain homosexual Rabbis… Your certainly a very curious form of “Judaism”.. I guess you can call yourself whatever you want but I believe your name is very deceptive of who you actually are.. I’ve read about the reform judaism faith.. cult like elements in your faith.. very non-biblical… and using the word Judaism doesn’t make your organization more righteous… Its shameful the stand your taking against the BSA and you should be ashamed of yourself for attacking them.. but God has His ways of bringing the disobedient back into a relationship with Him… It’s a truth; not my opinion.. I’m just a messenger… you can choose to listen or not… You’ve seen the Bible.. Maybe prayerful interpretation will help you to better understand it…

      • Sorry, Wallace – you are the one who is out of line. BSA is NOT a Christian organization!! And perhaps some prayerful interpretation on your part about the whole “Love your neighbor as yourself” commandment would help you to better understand it…

        • I wonder what you specifically disagree with.. Without Christians supporting the BSA the BSA wouldn’t be the organization it is today.. Christians are the backbone of the BSA whether you want to choose to agree with that or not.. Christianity is the truth; if you prayerfully try to understand God will show you the way to a loving relationship with Him.. Are you trying to speak for me and to say that I don’t love my neighbor MT-Momma… Do you think a Christian can love a sinner?? I love myself; I’m a sinner… I don’t think you understand what scouting is all about; what’s it’s mission statement; what’s its true mission?? And exactly how would a homosexual scoutmaster, an atheist scoutmaster, an agnostic scoutmaster fit in with the mission of the Boy Scouts of America?? I lived what the BSA was created for; it was my life experience.. Don’t I count.. Doesn’t my personal experience count.. stealing all of that away from me or from boys today or in the future, is that right.. Do you actually believe a boy is going to join a scout troop led by a homosexual couple, an atheist, an agnostic?? And if they don’t because it goes against their nature to stand making an oath to live a morally straight life; a Godly life while looking at the example of the leadership of his unit and thinking what’s wrong with this picture.. kids aren’t stupid.. I’d of quit, same kid as me today will quit, kids walking the same path in the future will quit.. You won’t understand as boys and girls are different and men and women are different too.. homosexuality, atheism, an agnosticism are revolting behaviors to me but did I ever say I didn’t love people; you said that for me.. Do you think the BSA, my church, the Holy Spirit within me allows my heart to feel that way about anyone; I’ll speak for myself; the truth of my heart is that I’m blessed with a love for my fellow man.. Does that mean that I want Homosexuals to take over the BSA and try to make the scouts and leaders believe their behavior is acceptable to God even though their behavior is in direct conflict to His Word… I do wonder about you MT-Momma.. or maybe as a woman and possibly a mother your just of the nature of being a people pleaser regardless of whether it is in defiance of God’s Word or not.. but if your Godly you can’t choose that path.. Everyone is free to choose to live a life surrendering your own will to follow His as revealed to all of us in meditating on His word, learning His nature and prayerfully surrendering to His will for our lives.. Do you think if I ignore His Word and become disobedient to His Word I’ll find an eternal life with Him one day.. I won’t and you won’t either.. And that’s greater than the BSA or any other earthly thing.. But I won’t surrender to lies to become a people pleaser; He doesn’t call any of us to do that.. I won’t ignore what He teaches us through His Word just to please people and look like I’m in the in crowd and with everyone else on an issue I know the truth about.. How could I love myself then; If I become a liar to what I know is the truth. I couldn’t.. Maybe you can share with me specifically where I’m wrongful in anything I’ve said. I mean wrongful as far as in contradiction to what His Word Says… I’ll speak for myself.. I do love God.. I love His Word… I have the Holy Spirit in my heart.. I do love myself.. and I do love my Neighbor.. Do you think being a Christian has taught me to walk away from the broken man lying on the side of the road even when so many have passed him by? Do you think I’ve ever picked up the broken man or the broken boy and helped them to find healing at a cost to myself? Do you think God blesses Godly men with His love and His Holy Spirit when you don’t take the time to know His Word, prayerfully Know Him and allow His love to fill your heart.. ? My Christian faith doesn’t teach me to surrender to everyone elses will and allow people to beat me away from my relationship with God.. I understand Love… I understand scouting; lived it.. There is a reason for its success and part of it is in the Godly leaders its attracted to run the organization.. I had many many good leaders and growing up scouting was my family and my life and in many ways I owe scouting far far more than I could ever repay… That’s why I’m a leader now.. And my son just earned his Eagle Rank.. And he understands what scouting has meant for himself in his way… I won’t let anyone steal that away without a fight.. Christian’s fight too… I fight for what I believe in.. That’s the character of the man who chooses to become an Eagle Scout… There’s a right and wrong and on the scouting membership policy being changed I know I’m right; can’t be changed.. not fair to all the boys in the program now and to all the boys who have the opportunity to benefit from the program in the future; some in the same ways I did… It’s a man thing; I’d assume most women wouldn’t understand… just truth; call it what you want but truths never change no matter what you call them…. and neither will His Holy Word…

        • Saperstein uses words like discrimination which I take offense to.. Who’s out of line.. Because an organization chooses to follow Biblical principles you don’t say they are discrimination in a way that implies they are wrongful.. That’s wrongful.. If the scouts choose to be a Godly organization, and they do, and they choose to think active homosexuals, atheists, and agnostics shouldn’t become members of the BSA then that’s their business.. You don’t attempt to cast them as discriminatory in the same sense that the discriminate against any race of people; unfair… They discriminate against people who are in conflict with the Scout Oath… Whose unfairly attacked who? Who deserves the apology? Think about what Saperstein has said… read his words closely.. look into what their church has said in the past about the BSA… I’ve read into their organization before… I understand… do you?

      • Wallace, I think you are overstepping the bounds of polite discussion here.

        A scout is reverent. He is reverent toward God. He is faithful to his religious duties and respects the convictions of others in matters of custom and religion.

        It doesn’t mean a scout has to believe what another scout believes. But Scouting, or this comments section, are not the place to be critical of someone else’s religion or religious beliefs, no matter how much you disagree with them.

        Scouting is an organization that welcomes those of all faiths. If you feel uncomfortable with respecting the convictions of others in matters of custom and religion, please prayerfully consider whether you can, with good conscience, follow the Scout Law in this area.

        • Your in title to your opinion.. I disagree.. This is my organization too as I’m a paid member of the BSA and a leader; I have a right to share my opinion on here especially when so many others are heartless in their attacks against the BSA.. Specifically where do you believe I’ve stepped any bounds; did someone set boundaries.. show me the boundaries and I’m sure I’ll find comments that have stepped over the boundaries in what they’ve said against the BSA and their current membership policies.. If you’ve made a comment with regard to the issue and your not a member of the BSA you’ve already stepped over a boundary in my opinion; its not your organization!!! There are people on here attacking the BSA and trying to change something they have no right to change as the BSA is a free and private organization which has chosen to have a membership policy that best serves their mission… If you don’t like it then why would you join??? I have no interest in joining an organization that isn’t Godly… And if they excluded me so what… If you have a better idea for a youth organization form your own based on your own ideals and principles.. I just don’t believe that’s the true purpose of the aggressive militant homosexuals who are trying to take over the BSA to serve their own selfish political and social desires… its a sinful selfish desire and I will defend the BSA… It’s my hearts desire and I believe you should choose to respect my passion for doing so; I wish I didn’t feel I had to and those attacking the BSA would just leave us alone… I’m not afraid to stand for what I believe in… And I would be a liar to myself if I didn’t stand up for what I believe in.. Think that’s the character of an Eagle Scout?? This isn’t a game…

        • I’m good with the Scout Law.. I think others should choose to be respectful of the BSA’s policies and back off.. They said they don’t welcome people who choose to be openly homosexual, atheists, and agnostics then those people should be respectful of that and not join the BSA or if their organization disagrees with the BSA then they shouldn’t charter BSA units… Maybe the BSA will actually look at these discussions.. They should prayerfully consider all factors when making decisions that will effect so many people.. There are truly people who don’t want this policy changed and who will no longer participate in the program if the program chooses to distance itself away from Godly principles… I’ve prayerfully considered all of this and with a good conscience have chosen to fight and defend the BSA membership policy against all the aggressive militant groups trying to attack it… That’s my free choice… If I disagree with a comment on here then I will stand up against it… That’s my free choice… This is a very important issue to me… I have a true right to share my comments; this is my organization…

        • Scouting doesn’t welcome un-Godly faiths.. Godly principles are woven all through the program…

        • What exactly is an “ungodly faith?”

        • Someone said wickams should be scouts?? if you don’t worship the one true God known to us through the Holy Bible then your unGodly.. that’s the foundation of scouting…

        • Walla e -
          Are you saying you believe that only Christians, who worship the Biblical God, are eligible to be scouts?

    • I don’t think the BSA is a good fit for your organization if you feel that way.. build your own youth organization; good luck with that…. Godly parents aren’t mindless…

    • Rabbi Saperstein, I would like to apologize for what Wallace has said here. He truly represents the dark ages underbelly of Christianity. Thank you for persevering in your values.

      Yours in Scouting.

      • Thanks for the confirmation jackmichaelson; I think that’s exactly it .. your thankful for Saperstein persevering in his values and not in God’s; you stand on soft & sandy ground when you stand with a man and a church that’s chosen to be disobedient to His Word.. You’ve made my point for me; don’t speak for me and think you have the power to apologize for me, unnecessary as I don’t apologize; apologize for yourself.. The Reform Judaism Church is a cult and has strayed away from Biblical Principles.. They should remove the name Judaism from their name and choose a name more descriptive of who they are.. Choosing to put Judaism in there name is false; a lie… Anyone that takes the time to understand why they’ve put the word reform in their name will understand that they are being disobedient to Gods Word… Their free choice, God loves freedom but God will patiently woo them back into obedience; in His time and in His way… His Word is full of examples of how He’s done it in the past.. you certainly reveal your true nature when you choose to describe me in harsh ways.. His Word was the same in the dark ages, this age and in all future ages; timeless.. I wonder if you believe your angry words would hurt me.. Their actually confirmation to me that I must be saying things right because your definitely on the wrong side of this issue… good luck with that…

    • I’m glad you lost your excitement…. I hope it continues throughout the month of May and forever more on this issue… but you can choose to change your mind and follow biblical principles.. we all have that free choice…

      • johnnyrat78 // February 11, 2013 at 11:04 pm //

        Wallace, keep up the good work. While I don’t equate BSA and Christianity, because of the generic “god” of god and country. And because of Muslims, Mormons, Hindus etc. who are in BSA. I admire your effort to stand strong for your beliefs.

        I also am a Christian and obviously oppose the radical homosexual agenda being shoved down our throats. I am appalled.

        • Well, if by “good work” you mean making Christians sound completely ridiculous, he is doing a good job.

          I keep hearing about this “gay agenda”. Can someone provide a link to it, so I can read it for myself and decide if I agree or not? Or should I just take your word for it that it is really, really bad?

        • Ask and you shall receive:

          GO THE SITES HERE AND FIND THE TRUTH.
          Fact Sheet:

          http://factsaboutyouth.com/posts/male-homosexual-behavior/
          Letter:

          http://factsaboutyouth.com/wp-content/uploads/Superintendent-LetterC_3.311.pdf

        • Those are links to a self-described Christian group that promotes “traditional values”. Those are links to the straight agenda. I was looking for links to the gay agenda.

        • They are medial facts. You can choose to beleive them or not.

        • i dont afiliate myself with a straight agenda as if i’m part of some sort of organized orgainzed militant social group going out and attacking homosexuals, atheists, and agnostics.. the BSA is a private organization with freely chosen policies to meet the needs of fulfilling their mission to serve youth in the best way they know how.. its their call. its a small group within a group who are angry that everyone doesnt bow down and recognize them as being what they want them to be so they set out to fight a battle they knew was going to be there and it is.. ALWAYS will be. it is biblical and biblical is bery important to the majority of people.. over 80% of Americans consider themselves Godly Christians.. these are facts that are selectively ignored by the media who are disproportionately favoring the aggressive militant homosexual agenda.. imagine what the media reporting was proportional with regard to this issue.. their would be one voice opposing this policy to every 1000 voices favoring the freedom of the BSA to make there own policies..