BSA membership resolution passes with more than 60 percent of vote


After an extensive discussion within the organization, the Boy Scouts of America’s approximately 1,400 volunteer voting members chose to adopt the membership policy resolution and remove the restriction denying membership to youth on the basis of sexual orientation alone.

The final vote breakdown was 61.44 percent for the proposal, and 38.56 percent against. The change takes effect Jan. 1, 2014.

Voting results were tabulated and certified by TrueBallot, an independent, third-party voting firm.

Read more at this site, or find the full text of the BSA’s official media statement below:

For 103 years, the Boy Scouts of America has been a part of the fabric of this nation, with a focus on working together to deliver the nation’s foremost youth program of character development and values-based leadership training.

Based on growing input from within the Scouting family, the BSA leadership chose to conduct an additional review of the organization’s long-standing membership policy and its impact on Scouting’s mission. This review created an outpouring of feedback from the Scouting family and the American public, from both those who agree with the current policy and those who support a change.

Today, following this review, the most comprehensive listening exercise in Scouting’s history the approximate 1,400 voting members of the Boy Scouts of America’s National Council approved a resolution to remove the restriction denying membership to youth on the basis of sexual orientation alone. The resolution also reinforces that Scouting is a youth program, and any sexual conduct, whether heterosexual or homosexual, by youth of Scouting age is contrary to the virtues of Scouting. A change to the current membership policy for adult leaders was not under consideration; thus, the policy for adults remains in place. The BSA thanks all the national voting members who participated in this process and vote.

This policy change is effective Jan. 1, 2014, allowing the Boy Scouts of America the transition time needed to communicate and implement this policy to its approximately 116,000 Scouting units.

The Boy Scouts of America will not sacrifice its mission, or the youth served by the movement, by allowing the organization to be consumed by a single, divisive, and unresolved societal issue. As the National Executive Committee just completed a lengthy review process, there are no plans for further review on this matter.

While people have different opinions about this policy, we can all agree that kids are better off when they are in Scouting. Going forward, our Scouting family will continue to focus on reaching and serving youth in order to help them grow into good, strong citizens. America’s youth need Scouting, and by focusing on the goals that unite us, we can continue to accomplish incredible things for young people and the communities we serve.

1,432 thoughts on “BSA membership resolution passes with more than 60 percent of vote

  1. Fixing my post above…..

    Unfortunately the “basic” problem ( not Brad Carter?) spell check…

    “” Who can’t get over the fact that people are different ….”” again spell check….

  2. People that I know have always respected the BSA for keeping Timeless Values and many people continue to want their sons joining moral organizations. The BSA National Council voted for the resolution because of a loss of money; they weren’t concerned with individual youth personal growth by associating with adults that can be good role models. The GayKK only wanted to get a foothold in Scouting so that maybe the BSA will allow future LGBT adults. What is wrong with this picture. The future of the BSA will be like the Canadian Boy Scouts, they have lost 50% of there membership, the people with a strong character and backbone left and the parents want no part of an experimental organization with there children. The Girl Scouts are now the face of every Liberal agenda program possible, teaching sex education, supporting the Planned Program Association,etc., they are losing membership. The BSA isn’t a religious organization, what? The Oath says Duty to God, Country ,and Self. The 12th point of the Scout Law is “A Scout is Reverent.” I don’t want the BSA to be an experimental Sociology study.

      • Your checking the wrong book. “Respectfully”, reverence is to GOD & the seriousness of a promise. Duty, Honor & Reverence are often NOT a convenient proposition. I understand that most of our earthly religious books speak to love each other. It doesn’t mean I have to love another’s way of living or their actions. Nor should I be forced to sacrifice my freedom of association. This does not make me a hater. It simply means I prefer the historical traditions of BSA. BSA has made their collective decision & now many other will make their own. God help us.

        • rev•er•ent (ˈrɛv ər ənt, ˈrɛv rənt)

          feeling, exhibiting, or characterized by reverence; deeply respectful.
          [1350–1400; Middle English < Latin reverent-, s. of reverēns, present participle of reverērī to revere1; see -ent]
          rev′er•ent•ly, adv.
          Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.

        • No worries, Mark, you have it right. Bob is just taking the typical progressive track of redefining accepted terminology to undermine an argument he can’t win. In context – that is, from the Boy Scout Handbook: “A Scout is Reverent. A Scout is reverent toward God. He is faithful in his religious duties. He respects the beliefs of others.” Ironically, the last part is the part being violated by the Bob and his ilk. If he and they truly respected the beliefs of others, they’d be Navigators.

        • The BSA’s interpretation of reverent includes a statement of respect for the views of others. I ask, rhetorically, if you didn’t agree with the organization, why did you join?

        • ya know Bob O..

          When I was in elementary school, I was taught you can’t use the word to define the word……

          Entertained by all the thrashing about here…..

          I understand that I will never change your mind……just as you will never change mine.

        • and yet we debate.

          “By the very act of arguing, you awake the patient’s reason; and once it is awake, who can foresee the result?”
          ― C.S. Lewis

        • Another deflection, Bob? This is why debating with progressive zealots is pointless. Pretending that you do not understand the Boy Scout Handbook, while claiming to argue that you understand Boy Scout values better than I, is disingenuous at best, blatant lying at worst. You don;t have a moral leg to stand on. Enjoy your victory and stop gloating. Move on; we will be.

    • I was told over a year ago from some older Scouters that have always had a keen eye for seeing the path that the BSA was heading. I did not want to believe what he was telling me. Well guess what, he was correct. Exactly what he said would happen did. Every blog site a could find that was discussing this had exactly the opposite outcome forcasted. It was planned by the upper management in BSA to do exactly this. Why is hard to understand as it will cost millions in lost revenue from the ranks and I don’t see corporate sponsors lining up to give their support.

  3. Do I know there have been, are and will continue to be gay Scouts? Of course.
    And that, coupled with the black and white, clinical words of the BSAs ruling today, is not the problem.
    Within minutes of the ruling, I saw posts from LGBT people saying the ruling is not enough and they’ll not be satisfied until openly gay leaders are allowed.
    I have a boatload of problems with that.
    First of all, if I have a child, it should be my place to be able to discuss sexuality issues with them, not to have the issue forced onto us, on a timeline that is beyond our control.
    Scouting has a “two-deep leadership” rule for the last several years that prohibits one-on-one contact between Scouts and any adults, unless that adult is a family member, so I have no concern of molestation.
    However, if gay leaders are allowed, there are other aspects of “two-deep” that will quickly become unworkable.
    Currently, unmarried adults of the opposite sex may not share tents, nor can Scouts stay in a tent with an adult who is not their parent of legal guardian. Allowing gays to assume leadership roles in a Scouting unit adds layers of complexity to what now is a fairly easy thing to regulate. But if a Scout has two parents of the same sex, but perhaps one is not a legally recognized guardian, that Scout would be forced out of the family tent, since no legal parental relationship exists.
    Also, since having gay leaders would make tenting with members of the same sex problematic, since the ‘unmarried’ relationship would be assumed for persons of the same sex, as well as the opposite sex.
    Although I do not have a problem with the youth policy, if anyone thinks it’s going to be sunshine and lollipops when these Scouts come out of the closet, they’re kidding themselves. I would earnestly hope that the Scouts would remain kind, as the Scout law requires, but I assume the same types of issues might arise, even within Scouting, from isolation, to unfortunately, hazing and potential violence. I suspect, due to this, there will be an unofficial and unspoken “Don’t Ask; Don’t Tell” policy followed by most gay Scouts and among most Troops.
    Finally, faith has always been a component of Scouting. No one ever tells a Scout how to be faithful and reverent, just that they acknowledge a higher power. Because of this foundation of faith, a significant number of Scouting units are chartered by religious organizations and churches, many of which believe, rightly or wrongly, that homosexuality is wrong. The youth ruling today will likely lead to some organizations to disband their Troops or Packs. Extending the ruling in the future, I fear, would wound Scouting to the core and lead to its dissolution.
    Gallup polls indicate about 4 percent of the population is gay. I believe in minority rights, but Scouting is a private organization and it is a shame that such a small group of potential members could undermine and destroy an organization devoted to teaching our youth life skills and the worthy ideals in the Scout Law.

    • I agree with most of your post. The resolution by the BSA states that homosexual and heretosexual conduct is impermissible. They basically put everyone on the same footing. We had an incident where a divorced father without warning brought his girlfriend. We were faced with the uncomfortable situation of explaining the problem. Then, I find out later that my 9 year old son saw these two idiots “making out” when they thought no one was looking. My son wanted to know why that woman was kissing his friend’s father; and where was the friend’s mother. It’s about respect for others. Something that has been lost. As far as the religious perspective, I was taught that you embrace them and pray for them to repent and for their salvation. They are not be excluded as long as the respect goes both ways.

    • >>>>First of all, if I have a child, it should be my place to be able to discuss sexuality issues with them, not to have the issue forced onto us, on a timeline that is beyond our control.

      While on the surface that sounds sensible, in the real world your kids will encounter gay peers in school, in church, in sports, in their neighborhood, and perhaps even within your extended family. Realistically, you can’t create a “gay-free” world for your kids.

      >>>>Currently, unmarried adults of the opposite sex may not share tents, nor can Scouts stay in a tent with an adult who is not their parent of legal guardian.

      There is no reason for this to change. If need be, side-by-side tents can be arranged, with the consent of the legal guardian.

      >>>>Also, since having gay leaders would make tenting with members of the same sex problematic, since the ‘unmarried’ relationship would be assumed for persons of the same sex, as well as the opposite sex.

      It is unwise to assume that there were no gay leaders under the previous policy. Better to assume there *are*, and write policies accordingly.

      >>>>I would earnestly hope that the Scouts would remain kind, as the Scout law requires, but I assume the same types of issues might arise, even within Scouting, from isolation, to unfortunately, hazing and potential violence.

      It will be easier to nip this in the bud, if vulnerable scouts are able to share their concerns/experiences with leadership without fear of getting kicked out.

      >>>>I suspect, due to this, there will be an unofficial and unspoken “Don’t Ask; Don’t Tell” policy followed by most gay Scouts and among most Troops.

      I expect you’re right, especially if the scout aspires to holding a leadership position after age 18.

      >>>>a significant number of Scouting units are chartered by religious organizations and churches, many of which believe, rightly or wrongly, that homosexuality is wrong.

      Generally they believe homosexual *behavior* is wrong. That view is not inconsistent with the new policy, as written. Read it carefully.

      >>>>Scouting is a private organization and it is a shame that such a small group of potential members could undermine and destroy an organization devoted to teaching our youth life skills and the worthy ideals in the Scout Law.

      I don’t think a few gay scouts will undermine the whole organization, if the folks who aren’t gay give it a chance. Those kids have been there all along.

      • It is unwise to assume that there were no gay leaders under the previous policy. Better to assume there *are*, and write policies accordingly.

        Wow. What other sexual activities should we “assume” ‘are’ going on so we can write policies for them?

        • She didn’t say there were sexual activities going on in scouts. Only that some leaders probably happen to be gay.

        • So, beth, do we really want people who Nature has decided should no longer be in the gene pool, and therefore led them to choose to be gay, teaching our kids life lessons? Really?

        • Bob, people don’t choose to be gay. They just are gay. They realize it at some point in their development.

          As for having gay individuals lead our children, and teach them life lessons… I don’t see why not. Gay people have taught my son in school. There are gay members of my family that have made beneficial contributions to the lives of me, my son, and all the other members of my family. Gay people are just people. They want the same things we all want.

        • “Gay” doesn’t mean behaving in any specific way. It means simply an orientation. You seem to think all gay people have sex in scouting. A ridiculous assumption. Assuming you are straight , do you have sex during your scouting activities? Or any activities?

        • Jeff, most every homosexual i know exhibits behavior related to their sexual orientation. Men behave and dress in a certain way so do women. Its ridiculous to assume they do not.

          Nice try to misdirect the argument to me. Do you not believe that placing sexually confused and sexually attracted youth togther does not raise teh risk of boy-boy sexual contact? Man, you are blind if you do.

        • @Fred Cooper
          >>>It is unwise to assume that there were no gay leaders under the previous policy. Better to assume there *are*, and write policies accordingly.

          Boys typically join Scouting when they are 7 or 8. At this age, in most cases, sexual orientation couldn’t be farther from their minds. As they enter their tweens, they may start getting crushes, as most of us do. For a few, those crushes will be on guys. It’s unrealistic to think that they will immediately think, “Hey, I think that guy in my math class is cute. Oh, that must mean I’m gay. Better tell mom & dad tomorrow that I’ll have to quit Scouts”. It’s a *way* more complex process than that. Therefore, it’s not unreasonable to assume that there will be some boys in Scouting who experience same-sex attraction. Having policies that recognize this reality is safer for the boys than writing policies that assume that this is never the case.

          >>>>Wow. What other sexual activities should we “assume” ‘are’ going on so we can write policies for them?

          When it comes to activity (rather than just attraction), the new policy makes it clear that “Any sexual conduct, whether homosexual or heterosexual, by youth of Scouting age is contrary to the virtues of Scouting.”

        • EagleMom If the ban was lifted because of the silent homosexuals that were in Scouting what does that say about the those who remained silent. Eagle Mom we are a nation of laws and so is the BSA. I have always expected that when a Eagle Scout recieved his award it was because of his obediance to the Scout Oath and Scout Law that the BSA have supported for a 103 years. No Council ot troop that approves any action based on dishonesty, cheating or disrespect for the purpose of that organization will survive in the long run. I believe that the ban should not have been lifted based on the fact that some homosexual scouts were dishonest and chose to be a scout under a cloud of dishonesty. Eagle Mom what if one of you children cheated at school and passed their test knowing that they were dishonest and you found out about it would you appove of that dishonesty? If a person does not like the laws then try to change them before they break them that is the American way.Sincerely, Trenton Spears

        • Trenton, I can see your concern that gay scouts should not “hide” to avoid being kicked out of Scouts. But how do you see this playing out, in practical terms?
          –Most kids join scouts when they are 7 or 8. It’s inappropriate for anyone, including a boy himself, to label a kid this age “gay”. All of these boys should be welcome in Scouting. And yet, a small percentage of these kids will, by their teenage years, consider themselves to be gay.
          –At some point, a boy may experience same-sex attraction – having a “crush” on another boy. Like for other young girls and boys, this “crush” is unlikely to lead to any sexual behavior. Should such a boy reveal his crush to his parents, and ask to leave Scouts?
          –If the same-sex attraction continues, the boy may begin to consider himself “gay”. Again,, he has not acted on his feelings. Should he, at this point, reveal his feelings about being “gay” to his parents, and ask to leave Scouts?

          You can see that there is not a specific point in this development where the boy switches from “presumably not gay” to “gay”; rather, it is a continuum. As such, it’s perfectly reasonable to see that there will be a small number of boys at some stage along this continuum in Scouting, even if they leave Scouts before they participate in any homosexual behavior.

      • As a lad 40 years ago now……I had a gay ASM as a member of the troop. Great guy.

        As a current leader I have met a number of gay scouters…..Great folks.

        As a current leader I have met a number of gay scouts……

        • You guys must have really put the welcome mat out or are a San Fran or similar city unit. Never seen or heard of a homosexual in Scouting in 16 years. don’t know anybody who has.

        • Fred I feel so sorry for you a a person to live in such a small universe. Best of luck in life love and tolerance I will pray for you.

        • I appreciate your prayers. And I pray for enlightenment for you as well and a internal examination of you moral standards especially since you have children. I will pray for them as well.

        • @Fred Cooper
          >>>>You guys must have really put the welcome mat out or are a San Fran or similar city unit. Never seen or heard of a homosexual in Scouting in 16 years. don’t know anybody who has.

          My kids have a friend who is a gay Eagle scout. Been to Philmont and the whole shebang. In the Northeast, it’s not that big of a deal, as the BSA survey showed. But at the same time, the gay folks I know don’t go around talking about it all the time either. If you are an older gentleman, it may be that gay folks in Scouting simply don’t share that information with you. Indeed, it could get them kicked out of Scouting, so it would not be wise for them to be open with you about it. Don’t assume you don’t know any gay Scouts; in fact, you probably do.

        • Northeast. That explains a lot. I’m sure you do have a lot of homosexuals running around your Troops. I am from the South. I am sure I do not. And yes, they would be out if they told me because I don’t willingly violate Policy because i want homosexuals in Scouting.

        • @Fred Cooper
          >>>>Northeast. That explains a lot. I’m sure you do have a lot of homosexuals running around your Troops. I am from the South. I am sure I do not. And yes, they would be out if they told me because I don’t willingly violate Policy because i want homosexuals in Scouting.

          – How do you know you don’t have any gay Scouts? How do you know they just aren’t telling you, because they know you’d kick them out for it? I don’t think there are any fewer gay teens in the South than there are in the Northeast.

        • I think you have no understanding of the South. I am basing my opinions on what I know of the Northeast from what I have read, people I have talked to, BSA studies and surveys and what you have said.

          Preparing for the name-calling to follow…

          I stand by what I said before about homosexuals in the South in Scouting.

        • @Fred Cooper
          >>>>I think you have no understanding of the South. I am basing my opinions on what I know of the Northeast from what I have read, people I have talked to, BSA studies and surveys and what you have said.
          Preparing for the name-calling to follow…
          I stand by what I said before about homosexuals in the South in Scouting.

          I’m not going to call anyone names.
          I believe you when you say that you’ve never seen or heard of a Scout you knew to be gay. I’m not disagreeing with that.
          I’ve lived in several areas of the South myself, though I now live in the Northeast. I do believe that gay teens in the Northeast are more likely to be open about it. Communities in the Northeast are more likely to be accepting of their gay youth. After all, most of the states in the Northeast now allow gay marriage; many through votes in the state legislature or even statewide ballot initiatives.
          However, I can’t think of any reason why there would be significantly fewer gay teens in the South than the Northeast. While adults may move to places like California or New York, where they are more accepted, teens have to “grow where they’re planted”, at least while they are young. And of course boys join scouting when they are 7 or 8, an age where sexual orientation doesn’t generally come up, so I’d expect the percentage of gays in Scouting to be about the same as in the general population, at least initially. So I’m assuming that there are likely to have been some Scouts you’ve encountered over the years who are in fact gay, but who have not brought it up with you. Do you think that’s a possibility?

        • I don’t see any point in responding to hypothetical s that I have already said I have not encountered in the real world. The culture is different is why you have so many homosexuals in the Northeast in my opinion. Very few teach it is immoral and wrong.

        • Having lived most of my life in the northeast (Massachusetts) and south (Georgia and Virginia), Fred is absolutely correct. Basic societal structures, especially the family and the neighborhood, are ex-urban anymore and thus live and thrive in the south but have been all but destroyed in the northeast. There are still some bastions of morality and “old-fashioned” family values in the few remaining farming and fishing areas of the northeast but, in general, the I-95 corridor north of the Potomac is Provincetown writ large. One has to search long and hard to find Mayberry in the northeast – in the south you have to avoid it if you so desire.

        • Old fred is in the south…….

          Where they cancel prom so the Colored and White folk don’t mix and then throw race specific Graduation Dances….

          Several of the gay scouters I met were on Woodbadge staff. Not hating great folks.

        • All posters will remember that I posted: “expecting the inevitable name-calling to follow.”

          I am glad you are consistent Bob!

          Let’s see. The most successful KKK membership numbers were in Indiana.

          Glad to see you are firmly rooted in the past and bring your regional biases up whenever you need to cloud the issue. Good work!

        • I honestly look forward to looking at the new organization that the On my honor group is creating…….

          I would like to see their membership standards…..So what about adulterers and Divorcee’s? How are they going to fit the moral code???? What about Parents who have youth out of wed lock???? Are they morally acceptable to be leaders?????

          Ya I am trolling,

        • I am interested too. I believe it will look a lot like the BSA policy before yesterday. Immoral and unprincipled people will not qualify. True, there are not as many to go around these days but what organization is worth joining that does not have standards. There are many out there and they are Social Clubs. I am sure they could add a chidrens program and might be more appealing to some.

    • I agree with your questioning. As a Scoutmaster there are way to many possible scenarios that could go haywire. As Adult Leaders we already have a great responcibilty to keep the Scouts safe and free from any harm, now that they have permitted this policy, I see potential for foul play amongst Scouts. I can foresee lawsuits because a Gay Scout inappropriately touched or fondled a non-gay boy. Another scenario would be the potential for boys immunlating their parents homophobic idealogy, right or wrong, and saying a gay Scout did something he may not have done. Enter the Lawyers. My stand is the same, I have yet in 43 years of Scouting seen any occasion for either lifestyle in Scouting. I do not tolerate any fooling around in my troop. Just goofing around and towel snapping or “nut-slapping” is off limit. Parents are notified and told to come get the Scouts involved. As a Christian, I follow the Scripture as reverently as I can. It says that it is an abomination before God. This is fine for those who believe the divine Word of God. Those who are agnostic, atheist, or occasionally religious are far more accepting of this policy. For that reason alone it should have been a National Membership vote. Yes Membership, the boys have a right to have their voice heard as well.

  4. I comment the BSA National Council on putting the issue to a vote of the Council members. Two decades ago when this got started what bothered me the most was that policy on a divisive issue was instituted without input from local Councils or a vote to amend or clarify National’s Charter, Bylaws, Rules or Regulations regarding membership.

  5. In 2000, the U.S. Supreme Court affirmed the right of the Scout organization to exclude homosexuals, because the behavior violated the core values of the private organization. Also known as “Timeless Values”

    • Yes, that decision did affirm the right of the organization as a private entity to set its own membership policies, including discriminatory ones.

      It also affirmed the organization’s right to have *non*-discriminatory policies if it saw fit to do so. The 1400 voting members saw fit to make such a change yesterday.

      For 70-and-some years, those “Timeless Values” did not include any specific statement on sexuality.

        • yes, i completely agree with that statement that sexuality has no place in scouting, however, what i don’t agree with is the discrimination. I don’t care if you are gay or bi or whatever, just as long as you don’t implement it into what you do in scouting i am a happy, as i said it doesn’t belong but it doesn’t mean you should ban them, just don’t ask, and if you happen to find out they are gay, as long as their not implementing it or expressing their sexuality in scouting it should be alright and should be allowed to stay. However, if they are implementing it and then at that point its game over. But this is just my opinion that can differ from anyone else. we all have opinions that differ and no one has the right say you are wrong on it, that is why it called an opinion.

    • How “private” is a tax-exempt organization? I applaud the Scout leadership for finally affirming that we are here to serve ALL boys. As Wayne Perry said, “No matter how you feel about this issue, kids are better off in Scouting. Our vision is to serve every kid. We want every kid to have a place where they belong.”

      My kid has found a wonderful place to belong…..and I want that same opportunity to be available to all boys who choose to live by the Scout Oath and Law.

      • yes Nancy I agree. I even spoke of this issue today with a troop leader and he even stated that if people think that there has never been gays in scouting then they need to wake up and take off their blinders.They have always been there with very little to no issues and I am sure these young men all became better adults for the tolerance they all learned, and the friendships gained.

        • See my response to another poster. In 16 years I have never seen or heard of a homosexual Scout or Scouter in Scouting or OA and not even at Jamboree. Where do you live? You Troop meetings must be much more open than ours.

          In any case, better they stayed in the shadows and homosexuality would still be out of Scouting as an official policy.

        • Tani I was a Boy Scout in 1949 and the only reference to homosexuals was outside of scouting and they were refered as being queers and to be left alone. There might have been homosexuals in scouting but I did know of one it wasn’t because I had blinders on I was just an innocent 12 yr.old kid enjoying the fun of scouting. I found out in 2000 that a homosexual could not be in Scouting because of the Supreme Court decision that the BSA had the right to exclude gays. I have personally never met a homosexual in 28 years of scouting. So my blindness came from not seeing any homosexual’s in scouting. The reference to blinders has raised its discriminating head and those who knew homosexuals in scouting deliberatley ignored it and it became a protective issue for the homosexual not a very scout like attribute. Trenton Spears
          Trenton Spears

        • Well and Politely said Trenton . I respect your honesty. But they have always been there just like in the military, it has just been kept quiet. Allowing people to be who they are is a good thing. I respectfully hope Boy Scouts continue and grow from this decision

        • Tani here is how it is working out Latest news report.The historic vote by the Boy Scouts of America’s National Council Thursday to allow openly homosexual youth in the program but exclude homosexual adult leaders has left people on both sides of the issue unhappy.
          California Democratic state Sen. Ricardo Lara says that despite the vote, he will continue to push a resolution that would revoke the BSA’s tax-exempt status “to ensure that discrimination in any form does not exist – not in our state, not on our dime.”
          The homosexual-rights group GLAAD said it and other like-minded activist groups will now encourage “gay” youth to participate in the Boy Scouts. But spokesman Ross Murray said “the ban on gay adult leaders is still a major barrier for many families and organizations.”
          He hopes, the Washington Post reported, that as homosexual youth “demonstrate their dedication to the program; hopefully it can change the culture of the organization from the inside.”
          Meanwhile, a coalition of members of the BSA who actively opposed the policy change says it is considering forming an alternative scouting organization.
          “Many Americans around the country will find it difficult to support the Boy Scouts of America after this decision,” said John Stemberger, founder of OnMyHonor.Net. “Despite this setback, we will look to the future.”
          Stemberger said his group will meet with likeminded organizations, parents and BSA members next month in Louisville, Ky., to discuss the creation of a “new character development organization for boys.”
          “We grieve today, not because we are faced with leaving Scouting, but because the Boy Scouts of America has left us,” Stemberger said.
          “Its leadership has turned its back on 103 years of abiding by a mission to prepare young people to make ethical and moral choices,” he said. “Instead, it is embarking on a pathway of social experimentation that we believe will place at risk the very youth the organization is entrusted to serve, while rendering as hollow the tenets of the Scout Oath.”
          Stemberger said his group welcomes public comments as it develops its plans, via email at Contact@OnMyHonor.Net
          The Assemblies of God and the Southern Baptist Convention are among the church denominations that already have formed their own Scouts-like organizations.
          The BSA said Thursday the resolution to change the membership policy was approved by 61 percent of the approximately 1,400 Boy Scout leaders from across the nation who voted at the organization’s annual conference in Grapevine, Texas.
          In a statement issued after the vote, the BSA said the resolution “reinforces that Scouting is a youth program, and any sexual conduct, whether heterosexual or homosexual, by youth of scouting age is contrary to the virtues of Scouting.”
          The policy change is effective Jan. 1, 2014, “allowing the transition time needed to communicate and implement this policy to its approximately 116,000 Scouting units.”
          Responding to the vote, the Family Research Council “expressed deep disappointment at the Boy Scouts of America.”
          “Sadly, the Boy Scouts’ legacy of producing great leaders has become yet another casualty of moral compromise,” said FRC President Tony Perkins. “Unfortunately, Boy Scout delegates capitulated to strong-arm tactics and abandoned the timeless values that have served the organization well for more than 100 years.”
          Perkins said the delegates “succumbed to a concerted and manipulative effort by the national BSA leadership despite the BSA’s own survey showing 61 percent of its members in opposition to changing the policy.”
          The new policy, devised after an extensive survey of BSA members, is a revision of a proposal issued in January that would have allowed local troops to decide whether or not to accept openly homosexual members and leaders.
          The Scouts count more than 2.7 million members and more than 1 million volunteers.
          The BSA said it has “no plans for further review on this matter.”
          “The Boy Scouts of America will not sacrifice its mission, or the youth served by the movement, by allowing the organization to be consumed by a single, divisive, and unresolved societal issue,” the statement said.
          The BSA said that while “people have different opinions about this policy, we can all agree that kids are better off when they are in Scouting.”
          The BSA’s decision to propose a change in policy, as WND reported, coincided with a sudden drop in major corporate funding that began last summer after a “gay”-rights blogger for the Huffington Post published a collaborative report that named the donors and chastised them for violating their own policy of not discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation.
          Stemberger has contended that a change in the membership policy would “gut a major percentage of human capital in the BSA and utterly devastate the program financially, socially and legally.”
          He has called the policy change “logically incoherent and morally and ethically inconsistent.”
          “Opening the Boy Scouts to boys who openly proclaim being sexually attracted to other boys and/or openly identify themselves as ‘gay’ will inevitably create an increase of boy-on-boy sexual contact,” said Stemberger in an open letter to the voting Scout leaders.
          He says internal estimates by the BSA project an estimated $44 million of lost annual revenue if the policy is changed.
          He points to BSA’s own “Voice of the Scout” surveys that indicate tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of parents, scoutmasters and scouts would leave the program if the proposal were adopted.
          A member of the National Council previously told WND a decision to change the policy would prompt a mass exodus at all levels of the organization.
          Last July, after a thorough two-year study, an 11-member committee of professional scout executives and adult volunteers unanimously concluded the policy of not allowing open homosexuals should be maintained.
          In 2000, the U.S. Supreme Court affirmed the right of the Scout organization to exclude homosexuals, because the behavior violated the core values of the private organization.
          © Copyright 1997-2013. All Rights Reserved.

        • I will share my experience, as someone with gay family members and close friends who lives in the Northeast (yes, where more people are comfortable being “out”) and in a state that has legalized gay marriage–i.e., someone who might be more aware if someone is gay or not. I have occasionally been surprised to learn that someone I have known for some time is gay, and I only find out because of something they say about their same-sex partner or spouse. Two points here: 1) the gay people I know look and act pretty much like everyone else I know, and 2) sexual orientation can be easy to miss–or hide, when necessary. Anyone remember Rock Hudson?

          I suspect there are just as many gays in the South as anywhere else–many just keep more quiet about it, to minimize the backlash from those who think they are evil sinners.

  6. So if a scout stays “in the closet” that’s ok, we’ll share tents and showers with them, like we’ve been doing the past 100 years. But the moment that boy comes out, he gets a special tent area and showers. And why would a gay scout ever come out? All he hears now at meetings is how bad this decision is and “no son of mine” blah blah blah. Any boy who comes out becomes the target, not the predator.

    • No such comments have been made in any meeting that I have ever heard of or conducted. This has been & should always be a conversation between a boy & his parent(s) or guardian. I have had this conversation with my son & now he / we have a decision to make. There may be some that worry about predatory practices, but not me or mine. It is simply a matter of choice. I would choose a “straight” BSA. Are there gays? Sure. They have always had the choice to stay in the closet or come out. No matter how you slice it; its a mess. I just don’t think I should have to sacrifice my freedom of association. This stinks.

    • Any gay scout joined under false pretenses. One cannot be simultaneously gay and morally straight, reverent, and do(ing) their duty to God as Scouts swear to do. “Gay Scout” is an oxymoron.

      • Bob Osipov writes: “One cannot be simultaneously gay and morally straight, reverent, and do(ing) their duty to God as Scouts swear to do.”

        We understand that in your church that is impossible. Please be tolerant and understand that in my church it is possible, so we welcome the new rule as one borne out of love.

        • Then you should have joined the Navigators rather than join an organization with which you obviously disagree with the sole intent of destroying that organization. Where is your “tolerance”, db? Why not associate freely with those of a similar bent rather than interfere with the lives of others you obviously do not respect?

  7. Settle down, everyone, with the conjecture. This policy doesn’t go into effect for 7 months.

    When the US Military removed it’s “Don”t Ask , Don’t Tell” policy, they spent a lot of time first working out the technical details before actual implementation and then conducting education on it. If the military could figure it out with people living together 24/7, I’m sure BSA can also come up with workable guidelines during the coming months.

    • Gary,
      Keep in mind the military members work within a different structure. They are given no choice and are not allowed to publically discuss it. I think if you talk to individual members, you will not find a easy compliance – particularly in the dorms.

    • Gary, you fail to undertsand something very basic. When I joined th service, I had a choice to join or not to join and under what terms. When you belong or join an organization that met your beliefs and standards and they change them, against your core fabric, then you have a make a decision. It’s a person choice – whether to stay or leave based upon ones beliefs.

      • Glenn nice try the increase in the military does not have anything to do with the Homosexual moverment there is simply no jobs for many of the adults coming out of High School and College earning money is a necessity and joining the military has been a great source for suviving in this economy. The need join the BSA is a non essential choice. Trenton Spears

      • In my experience second hand sources are often biased and original sources more accurate, The WND link does not cite the referenced report and the 20% number is from a person who operates a partisan web site.

        Original reports on the subject available at
        The DoD site contains a report citing the percentage of unwanted sexual contact on active duty men as follows:
        2006: 1.8%, 2010: 0.9% & 2012: 1.2%

        Did I check all reports? NO. Investigate and discern the fact yourself

      • lol, yes, William, this pretty much blows the “Family Life” MB out of the water, doesn’t it? Of course, by voting to abandon the Oath and Law they’ve pretty much put everything else on the table, too, so who knows how this will go. Will the next MB be “Heterosexual Awareness”?

        • Absolutely ridiculous. The Family Life merit badge is still relevant. Gay people have families, after all. There’s certainly no need for a homosexual merit badge. Gay people don’t want to join scouts for a place to be gay. They want to join scouts for a place to be scouts.

        • That’s ludicrous, beth. They wouldn’t have “joined to be scouts” knowing that scouts did not include gays. They joined to deny scouting to others, to advance their own choices over those of others. As for “family”: if they had a functioning family, they wouldn’t have chosen to be gay.

        • @Bob Osipov
          >>>>That’s ludicrous, beth. They wouldn’t have “joined to be scouts” knowing that scouts did not include gays. They joined to deny scouting to others, to advance their own choices over those of others. As for “family”: if they had a functioning family, they wouldn’t have chosen to be gay.

          Most kids join Scouting when they’re 7 or 8. They don’t join to make a political statement, or to somehow deny Scouting to others through their presence, or to advance or advocate for any kind of life choices. They’re little kids. They join to do Pinewood Derby, and go camping, and spend time with friends,

  8. I want to thank the 1400 Members for voting and helping to guide Scouting during this time of change. This decision was not an easy one as it is such a polarizing topic. We are a providing a program for the youth, and we needed to keep that in mind. I thought the vote would have been decided by tenth of a percent in either direction, I am happy to see the difference in opinion was much larger.

    • There was a reason for having the 1400 delegates come to Grapevine Texas for the vote it was to sway the delegates with a homosexual biased siminar led by Wayne Brock and his Executive staff. I would like to have minute report of the days leading up to the vote on Thursday. The 1400 delegates could have voted proxy and voted from their home areas. But having to be in Grapevine gave the National leaders the opportunity to convince the delegates that the future of scouting would depend on lifting the ban. I have seen the decline in Scouting for the last 15 years and I believe that the National Board has been under a lot of stress finding a way to stop the decline and lack of funding I have too. I am a Boy Scout recruiter and it has been a uphill battle to recruit with uncertainey in the political arm of the non political BSA. Lifting this ban will not increase membership it will harm the recruiting efforts of the local councils. The facts that 2 to 3 % homosexuals in the nation does not enlarge the recruiting pool. I believe that we are going in the wrong direction and when Adult Homosexuals legally come in to the BSA [ which they will ] it will be the final step to decrease growth and funding in the BSA. Over 60% of responces to the National BSA survey did not want to have the ban lifted their responces were ignored proving one fact the 1400 delegates in Grapevine Texas were out of touch with mainsteam BSA members. I believe that many families wil stay in scouting for a while but I believe that long term scouting is in serious peril and when we recharter in December the result of this vote will have a impact on the decision to remain in the BSA. Sincerely,
      Trenton Spears

        • Excellent analysis? You’re kidding, right? That was nothing but speculation and supposition.

        • .C’mon db, let me see your analysis. I am sure it will be so much better. Where is it? I look forward to seeing it.

      • Totally agree Trenton, we have lost many seasoned troops in our District and Council over the past four or five years. When you investigate the root cause it seems to always go back to a few things. The overall cost of Scouting, All the hoops and redtape and “online” training that has to be done continually, like every two years your Adult Leadership may all of a sudden turn into pedohiles or criminals. If the Districts and Councils did a better job of reaching out to their Troops and Packs, they might have the pulse of Scouting. Many of the new District Executives are recent college grads, who have never even been in Scouts. What better way to infiltrate a private organization with this passive permissive attitude. Another pet-peeve of mine is Councils dictating that the DD’s and DE’s must start so many new Chartered Troops. Why, when in many cases there are already existing Troops that are well rounded and have very deep alumni support. This should not be a requirement of the DE. They need to concentrate on serving the existing Troops and Packs and Training and educating themselves as to what being a Scout is. Look at what a bust the national TV program on “Tougher than A Boy Scout”. What a joke. Get a baker’s dozen Eagle Scouts to go up against three old Scouters or formal Scouters who didn’t quite make it to Eagle. These old guys didn’t stand a chance against these young Eagle Scouts. Now had you done this with Adult Leaders from outstanding Troops and put them against these Eagles, you might have had a show.

      • As far as I am concerned this is a slap in the face to all of the hard working volunteers by the “paid” professional Scouter elite. It affects those of us in the trenches so to speak. We as Leaders are the ones who take on the burden of responcibilty for protecting the Scouts from harmful negative influence. Just stop and think about how many young men we have guided over the years and kept out of gangs, drugs, tobacco, and alcohol. They never forget their Scouting experience. This is why I give away so much of my free time to devote myself to molding these young men into fine upstanding citizens, not polarized politized splinter groups. This will unfortunate set the BSA on to the road to dimenished stature in our respective communities. Iread somewhere that the gay and lesbian populace was like 4-6%. Why would we jepordize over a hundred years of successful youth character building for such a small group, especially since we are a private entity. It doesn’t make any since what their agenda was or is. This is going to hurt in more ways than I care to imagine. I had siz grandsons in scouting prior to this vote. I now have one,the grandson I am raising. The main reason, he told me no matter what was decided,he had spent all of his past ten years to get to where he is in Scouting and he wants to reach his Eagle. I am proud of him for that. My personal beliefs would not affect my Leadership objectives, I just prefer not to have their gay agenda forced down my throat.

        • The ~1400 who voted were volunteers, not professionals. This was a decision made by volunteers.

  9. Hopefully we can all remember our own Scout manners and training and remember to speak respectfully and politely, even to those with whom we disagree. A Scout is kind.

      • “Morally straight” was in use decades before “straight” came to mean “not gay”, and meaning instead, of course, something more akin to “morally upright.”

        • Homosexuality is not even “morally upright” is it? Probably for you though, right?

    • You will see how kind and civil the gay and lesbian groups and media are going to be to the BSA. This is not what they want. They want full allowance of Homosexual Leaders. It will end up being just like our public schools and colleges, led by a bunch of PC wimps, promoting their agendas and exposing our children to this dispicable lifestyle.

  10. I think sexual orientation is a bad attribute to judge fitness for leadership on. If our youth come from a home with two dads or two moms—it seems wrong to me to accept the scout and exclude the parent. We are a family organization, and families come in a myriad of forms. If adults of scouts choose to train, take a background check and volunteer their time with a troop—sexual orientation should not exclude them. Sexual orientation has no correlation to sexual abuse, or to being a good person. The BSA is holding “morally straight” to be “sexually straight,” not the same thing

    • Disagree. The boy is welcome. No one should make any comment about the “family” make-up. IF the parents want the boy in the program, then they have to accept that the program would not allow them to serve as leaders. Doesn’t make them bad or immoral people & doesn’t make BSA the bad guy either. When I think about morality, I think about what I have been taught. While I would not call a LBGT person immoral, I do not believe their lifestyle is “moral”. More over as long as I don’t have to be involved with that issue, then it make sense to me that I should not judge, but when I am attacked for my freedom of association, then who hold the moral high ground.

  11. “As the National Executive Committee just completed a lengthy review process, there are no plans for further review on this matter.”

    Wishful thinking by the Executive Committee. The only way to settle this once and for all is to issue a full non-discrimination policy and open Scouting to all. And yes, that policy should include girls, and should not force a belief in God.

    I propose…. “The Boy Scouts of America does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, sex, age, physical or mental disability, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other basis covered by local law.”


  12. Why did you fail to post my comment about the vote percentage requirements requird by the Charter and Bylaws? This was done before the rest of the above posts for today?

  13. This membership issue is only as issue because we let it be an issue. As a Scout and Scouter for more than a few years I have seen a number of changes that didn’t agree with, but have remained in the program because it’s pluses number way more than it’s negatives. I have never thought that letting women be a Scoutmaster was a good thing, but I’ve seen those troops that wouldn’t exist if it weren’t for that lady. Does the good here outweigh the bad? In my opinion, yes. Would I have voted for the change? Probably not, but that doesn’t mean I’ll resign my membership like some spoiled child who doesn’t get his way. Considering the changes we undertake every day in our lives, it’s amazing some people belong to anything other than their own ego.

    Scouting is still the best and I’m honored to be a member.

      • Okay Me. I like that logic. As long as you can keep down the immoral part, the rest if good. What might cause it ti tilt 50%? Homosexual adults? or will you just the line alittle further back in the sand? I think the latter.

        • your views of morality are a little discombobulated my good sir. Morals differ between people and religion and you really fail to understand(after reading your responses) that people have different opinions. you seem to just get angry like a child when people have different views than you, to me it seems like you are trying to force your opinions on others, and it wont work. everyone on this blog has different opinions about this and some people are just complaining that they did not get there way. i don’t know why people think their opinions are fact over others. come back to reality, their called opinions for a reason. and your morals are not the same as others, so again, just because you believe something does not mean it is factual.

        • Absolutely wrong, J.R. The Scouts were just fine as along as they held to their beliefs. The Scout Oath and Law were the bedrock and the reason most joined. It is those who forced the change in those time-honored values who are intolerant and forcing their views onto others. People happy with gays could easily have joined another organization with which they agreed rather than infiltrate and destroy an organization with which they differed. Gays and gay supporters chose the latter path. For all they demand it, “tolerance” is obviously not part of their chosen lifestyle.

  14. A poster indicated that the by-laws of the organization requires a 2/3rds vote for approval. This threshold was not reached. Can we obtain a copy of the by-laws and/or the name and contact number of the secretary and parliamentarian of the BSA? Brian, can you help.

      • That’s interesting, Gary. Perhaps that’s the way to fix this. Demand a change in the by-laws reinstating the old policy. If opened to entire membership rather than a few spineless functionaries, such an amendment would very likely pass and put us back on the right path. Good thinking!

  15. Right, this is just one of those topics where you have groups yelling at each other from their own ledge. It’s a difficult thing. I just have to think about it that the BSA isn’t a “Christian” organization. They have gone through this type of thing before back when non-white scouts weren’t allowed to be in units with white scouts, etc… Is being gay wrong? From a Biblical perspective the Bible does touch on those things, and it also talks about other things being sins like greed, apathy, laziness, drunkenness, hatred, etc… Is one sin worse than another? I’ve always been taught that ALL sin separates us from God. So, is the BSA the morality police? Well, if they are, then we must disallow every scout from being in scouting that breaks any of the morals in the Bible. So, that being said – we no longer have a Boy Scouts that does actually teach good principles because no one meets the moral code of conduct except Jesus and he had tax gatherers and sinners as his disciples. Hate the sin and love the sinner has typically meant for Christians that we quarantine ourselves from them (though ironically we are one of them). I would propose that we would not be salt and light to the world if we are not willing to associate with the sinner. Which again, we all fall into this category. If you do find the “perfect” boy organization out out there, don’t join it because you most certainly will muck it up.

    • BSA is not the appropriate platform for a boy to “learn” about anything of a sexual matter. There is just too may issues that Scout Leaders should not have to deal with. I do my best to love the sinner; just don’t ask me to have to allow those who find no sin in their way of life into my Scouting life. Just about everywhere we are forced to be PC because we don’t want to offend & for peace sake I go along doing my best to love the sinner, because I am a sinner too. But there has to be some places where for better or worse those who are of a like mind can assemble without have to accept something they do not agree with.

      • You CAN have this! In communist countries, if you don’t believe and abide by the rules you are imprisoned or put to death. Doesn’t sound like much of an inclusive sort of scouting community built on brotherhood, but I do suppose it is achievable…

        But, I don’t know if all of scouting is so “like minded”. I’ve seen some pretty strange stuff in my years in Scouting.

        • Some of us are seeing pretty “strange” stuff right now and expect to see more.

      • Mark, I agree with some of your points. I don’t like to be around people that find no sin in their own lives. We all have faults, and those that think themselves perfect are tiresome.

        I also agree that sexuality should be left to discussion of families. It’s not the place of the BSA to bring this up. By removing a ban on gay boys, we are heading in that direction. The next step is to remove the ban on gay leaders. With no distinction between gay members at all, there will be no need to bring it up.

        • As so many of the pro-policy people have posted, BSA was crawling with homosexuals and has been since Brownsea Island and Gilwell Field in England and we did not have to openly accept it as normal as is the case with the new policy.

          It seems that worked very well. But just like all other organization homosexuals have forced themselves into, they want other adults to accept them openly and without reserve a policy. After a couple of years, you folks will get your wish. BSA Leadership has already proven they have a spine of linguini so to protect money and save legal fees they will capitulate.

        • Hi Fred- it is interesting that you bring it up. You wrote: “BSA was crawling with homosexuals and has been since Brownsea Island and Gilwell Field in England”. There is the long-standing theory that Baden-Powell was a repressed homosexual and that his best friend Kenneth McLaren may have been “less repressed”. So yeah, it is quite possible homosexuals have been with us from the very beginning.

        • What an insulting thing to say about Baden-Powell. You should retract it immediately as it is unproven and baseless. Men could be friends in those days and not attracted sexually. its called male-bonding. If you’re a man, you should try it.

          Homosexuals try to glom on to any great historical figure to increase acceptance and teach it to children. Some are proven, some are not. In BP’s case, it certainly is not,

        • Well – I don’t think its baseless. Some of it is pure speculation based on how we stereotype homosexuality today: Baden-Powell liked to put on musicals. He’d dress in drag. He didn’t sleep in the same room as his wife. His relationship with McLaren. The strongest evidence was his own writing after viewing and admiring photos of boys skinny dipping. Do we know? Of course not. Does it matter? Not to me.

        • Then why bring it up and provide “evidence” that you believe supports your theory? Obviously it matters to you. Go ahead. admit it.

        • db Great Kudus to Baden Powell for over 106 years he has given the opportunity for the youth of the world to be a member of the greatist charector and value building organization the Boy Scouts. This is quite a legacy that is unmatched in the history of the world. For the last 13 years the homosexual movement have tried to change the suucess of Baden Powell even refering him to to favor homosexuality in his mission of Scouting. It is simply not true. The BSA National Board has imbarked on a mission to distroy Baden Powells mission for the last 100+ years. They betrayed the trust of the people on the front lines the Volunteers of Scouting. Their 60% voice’s on May 23rd became silent after months of expressing their views through written surveys to leave the policy as it is no homosexuals in Scouting. I believe that Wayne Brock was elected the top executive of the BSA to change the policy of no homosexuals in scouting this was his mission and his personal desire. db I read my local paper the Bakersfield Californian and in some of the comments from the article was from Rich Ferraro of GLAAD said he will continue to discourage corperations from giving to the Boy Scouts till they lift the ban on adult homosexuals. Funding was the primary reason the BSA National Board voted to partially remove the ban. It looks like the mission was not accomplished and the vote was wasted and it has become the greatist blunder in the history of the BSA. I can hear Baden Powell say do you miss me yet. I say yes Baden we certainly do. Sincerely, Trenton Spears

  16. Apparently the BSA has decided it would rather have the approval of the media and politically correct rather than maintain a system of values and morality. Better change the Scout oath and laws to correlate to your new-found “standards”.
    Oh, and better get used to a much reduced membership since you have opted for the approval of “the world”. Anyone who continues in the BSA after this decision should be ashamed.

  17. Vote with your feet. Don’t join organizations you disagree with. Leave organizations who change you now disagree with. Let the 200,000-300,000 membership loss begin. If the 1400 voting membership is out of touch of us Scouters – let them find out quickly.

  18. I am saddened to see the snarky level that this conversation has sunk to on this site–other times this issue has been discussed here, the tone has been much more respectful throughout more of the comments–just about the only place on the Internet where that was true in regards to this topic.

    I am greatly relieved that this policy has been changed, at least for the boys. A bit ironic that Venturers can be “gay and OK” (not to mention female) till they are 21, but gay Scouts are given the boot three years earlier.

    I am glad that BSA has re-committed to serving ALL boys–that is exactly where the focus should be. Some of those boys are too young to even know they are gay–they should no longer have to face expulsion when they figure it out.

    I imagine that someday the old policy will feel as dated as Jim Crow laws–which used to be defended just as passionately, with similar arguments. Scouting values (should) have nothing to do with discrimination. Thank you to our National Council.

    • “I am greatly relieved that this policy has been changed, at least for the boys. A bit ironic that Venturers can be “gay and OK” (not to mention female) till they are 21, but gay Scouts are given the boot three years earlier.”

      As far as I know, Venturers did not have a waiver.

      If you do not understand that allowing homosexuals in the BSA opens the door to militant activism and flamboyant behavior, then you are a bit nieve. These are reasons why my wife and I avoid assiciating with it in our personal lives and chose scouting as a safe place to participate with our children.

      You may be fine with that kind of behavior, but we do not. Look at what the GSA have become…………..

      • I watched yesterday’s press conference (on, and I recall that it was said that Venture Scouts “age out” at 21, and I believe that meant that they can be “out” and stay in Scouting until then.

        Hmm, I was a Girl Scout, and I recall nothing unusual in the girls and women around me.

        As for “militant activism and flamboyant behavior”, the gays and lesbians I know, at any age, tend to go about their lives like everyone else. In my experience, activism and flamboyance have a lot more to do with personality and social conscience than sexual orientation–like some of those Loud-Mouthed Mother-Scouters (oops, count me as one).

        As for the “gay agenda” I keep hearing about–if demanding to be treated as an equal is an agenda, well….bring it on. That’s the kind of “agenda” that Scouting should wholeheartedly support.

  19. DB says excellent analysis? You’re kidding, right? That was nothing but speculation and supposition.
    DB Please check the facts and then form an opinion. Where is your analysis? Trenton Spears

  20. It appears to be strange and inconsistent that the 1400 voting members of the National Council, who are all VOLUNTEERS and are supposed to represent their home councils and regions, voted against the wishes of those they represent. They received a Membership Standards Review Voting Member Information Packet which is available here: and shows that the majority of parents, Charter Organizations, Councils, and Volunteers (though not youth) oppose the change. The Packet also shows that most councils/regions report that they would see a reduction in both funding and membership if the change were to go into effect.
    If the volunteer members who have voting power in the National Council don’t represent their areas, they shouldn’t be representing their councils or regions and there needs to be a reconsideration of how these members are chosen.

    • I have sent a request to my Council’s Executive to respond on who represented us and how they voted and the reply will be reflected in my future FOS. This is not a “Secret Organization”. It just doesn’t work that way.

  21. New program on the horizon. Those who would like to participate in a new program starting up, please go to This group will be spear headed by American Heritage Girls which is a faith based girls scouting program. “When the Enemy comes in like a flood, the Spirit of God will raise a standard against him!” (Isaiah 59:19)

    • Thanks, Kimberly. I’m keeping an eye on, too. When the BSA voted to abandon their core principles, they voted to abandon us. We’ll look for better alternatives or go it on our own. (Until the rabid minority take those options away, too, of course. I simply can’t understand why they choose to define “tolerance” as “destroy groups with which we disagree” rather than simply forming or their own group, live, and let live. Alas.)

      • Keep in mind that a majority of Scouts who were surveyed supported repealing the ban–which doesn’t sound like a rabid minority to me, just a bunch of kids who probably know gay kids who are no better or worse than the next kid. As usual, our young people are way out ahead of so many of the rest of us in terms of social conscience.

        Last I looked, a majority of Americans in a number of different surveys said they support gay marriage (and likely gays in Boy Scouts, too)–the times are changing. It wasn’t that long ago that African-Americans were excluded from an awful lot of places, too–just for being, um, who they are.

      • Bob Osipov Here is a fact. Less than 5% of the Scouts Nationally ever make the Eagle Scout rank that means the rest of the other scouts accomplishments are just for memory. I did not make Eagle when I was a scout so I do have a lot of good memories and I believe why I returned to scouting was a result of my experiences as a youth. If on my return to be a scout leader I would have to accept homosexuality as a condition of my membership it would be contrary to what I have been taught in my in my youth scouting membership and I would not be a scout Leader today. I believe more scouters have become Leaders because of the values that scouting has represented over the years not the political nonsence that is going on now. Trenton Spears

        • Your going to need to site your source sir.

          About 7 percent of all Boy Scouts earned the Eagle Scout rank in 2012.
          Source: 2012 BSA Local Council Index

          I believe that number was 56,000 something……..

          Our council produce 350 alone…..

        • Yes, very true, Mr. Spears. I quite scout after Cubs because I found camping and hiking more exciting than going to meetings. My boys, though, wanted to join scouting so we’re involved again. When I informed my boys of the result of the vote they said they’re no longer interested in Boy Scouts so we’ll be on our own unless the OnMyHonor folks or some other, similar outfit decides to take up the standard in the face of the barbarian hordes.

        • It’s rather offensive to refer to others as barbarians simply because you disagree with them on an issue. Gay people and those straight allies that wish for equality for their fellow man aren’t bad people. They simply have a different opinion about certain things than you have.

        • Beth have you no shame as it is your mission to twist comments to suit your agenda. I have never referred to Homosexuals as barbarians. They are my sisters and brothers in Gods creation, Earth. We are all sinners and all will be judged by the bar of Jehovah me, you and everyone else yes even homosexual scouts. The difference is that some know it as sin and will repent and some do know and refuse to repent of sin. For those who do not know it there will be opportunities to overcome their trangressions it is called Christianity and a belief in God. Sincerely, Trenton Spears

        • It’s ok to call people that you disagree with names… (unless its a person who believes in equality calling their opponent ‘homophobic’). I apparently have no shame because I find that offensive. (I haven’t twisted a thing). This conversation is beyond preposterous. I’m through here. The vote went the way I hoped it would. No need for me to continue to bang my head against the wall. Everyone have a great day/night/life. :-)

      • Check your facts, Nancy: 60% of scouts and scouters said they wanted to maintain the ban. Even the packet handed to the EC admitted that. By just about every respectable poll, including that by the CDC, only 3% of the country is gay. That’s a pretty small minority to force the rest to not only tolerate but support and laud their lifestyle choice. I wonder what fraction of our society choose to be murderers – if it’s near 3% should we let them change our moral codes, too? You say kids are ahead of us in accepting gays and that may be true. They’re naive and subject to constant bombardment by pro-gay propaganda. That’s why families and, until Thursday, Scouting was so important. Kids have to be taught values and YouTube is not the place to get them. Your comparison of gay “rights” with racism is laughable. Race is not a choice.

        And you still (well, not you alone but “you” in the collective sense) have still not explained why it was so crucial to change the Boy Scouts rather just join a unit with which you agreed. Why not live and let live?

        • My understanding is that a majority of SCOUTS, as well as younger adults, support(ed) repealing the ban.

          Why change the policy? Because it is a matter of, in some cases, actual survival for gay and questioning youth. There is no way we can pretend that having an anti-gay policy doesn’t lead at least some of our Scouts (not to mention adults) to treat gay youth poorly, wherever they may come across them. Bullying behavior and being looked at and treated as “less than” helps lead a whopping 40-some percent of gay youth to attempt suicide (just google it for more info). And, no matter what you may think of being gay, any policy that pushes even one kid to feel that degree of despair is, in my book, absolutely wrong and needs to be flushed out as soon as possible. What if this kid were your own son or daughter?

          I can’t agree that someone near me being gay can be compared in any way to a murderer. The latter person actually hurts other people. I cannot claim to be hurt in any way by having gay people around me.

          What pains me most about all this is that we are talking about KIDS. Why anyone would seek to shame children for being who they are is beyond me–and yes, being gay is not a lifestyle “choice” for most–it’s who they are.

          I am not sure if “just join a unit with which you agreed” means to go to another organization or that BSA should have passed the “each troop decides its own policy” policy. If the former, I absolutely don’t have the time or energy to start another organization. If the latter, it is because of what I said above: that policies like this put gay youth at risk of harassment and cruel behavior from others, which is exactly what Scouting should stand up against.

        • I’ve seen this argument start to appear in the media here and overseas about the policy saving lives by preventing suicide. It is a ridiculous argument to make. It is extremely unlikely that a youth will commit suicide because he can’t join Scouts. Publik School is where the bullying etc. take place, not Scouting, however, I have been told on this list that any teasing is bullying. PC run amuck!

        • Fred–the point is not that kids will attempt suicide if they can’t join Scouts (an idea I find as preposterous as you do), the point is that policies like these add to a climate of hostility, bullying, and outright hatred in school and society. Just read some of the comments on this blog! Teens are prone to depression. Teens attempt suicide. A large percentage of gay or questioning teens attempt suicide, even if it is “only” once (once might be all it takes). While it is impossible to find out the reasons for each and every kid who does this (some of them are dead, after all), we can certainly imagine (and data supports) that the more poorly you are treated by others and the less accepted you are, the more depressed you might be, and the more likely you might impulsively try something extreme. Bullying and suicide is not just a problem of gay youth, but a policy like the old one screams “you’re dirt!” And saying, “Well, we just don’t approve of your lifestyle” doesn’t really make the whole thing any prettier. It’s only a slightly more polite way of saying, “You’re dirt.”

        • There are 2,000,000 Scouts and it not a cool thing to be and the Scouts in my Troop tell me a lot of kids think Scouts are “gay” anyway. I just don’t see where excluding a sexual lifestyle would create depression so bad the youth would want to commit suicide? Much more likely non-acceptance by his “cool” friends causes serious depression as has been proven many times. In my opinion the idea that homosexual exclusion even “may” cause suicide is a serious overreach and misdirects away fron the real problem, nonacceptance by popular secular youth and overemphasis on MTV culture in youth today..

        • Again, the point is not “exclusion” from Scouting–the point is that the old policy is a reflection of how much some people hate/disapprove of gays (choose whichever verb fits each situation). If we were talking about just one organization with an exclusionary policy in the midst of an otherwise accepting and welcoming societal climate–no big deal, but I don’t know ANYWHERE in the country/world where that is true, even in the most liberal areas. Many places a gay person can still reasonably expect to get beat up for being “out.” Not unlike being black not all that long ago.

          The way to try to understand what a gay kid might go through in this society is to try to put yourself in their shoes, particularly if they live in a part of the country that is less accepting. Imagine that you are trying to figure out your sexuality, you might not be all that thrilled to find out how “different” you are, you know that there are people around who will shun you if you even mention that you might not be what they consider “normal” in terms of your sexuality. Maybe you are already a shy or awkward kid, or maybe you are a popular kid but know you will lose most of your friends if you come out. Maybe other kids already think you are a little odd, or already call you “gay”–still a slur in most middle and high schools in this country. Maybe the slurs advance to outright tormenting (one young boy–I think he was 11–killed himself in this area recently because other kids in his school were bullying him because they thought he was gay; another young girl did the same because she was relentlessly bullied for being romantically involved with the wrong guy and got a ton of crap for it)–kids can be VERY mean. Stir in some heated adult debates (and mud-slinging) about, say, gay marriage, or gays in Scouting. Many kids are rejected by their families as well, which is why gay kids sometimes end up homeless.

          I recall MY adolescence (admittedly, I did not have the advantage of being in Boy Scouts) as being distinctly lacking in much self-esteem, which is what I see lacking in many teens–even though I grew out of it by the time I reached adulthood. How can this kind of condemnation and potential loss of family and friends not make a kid feel pretty darned bad about himself a lot of the time? It would take someone who was a monument of self-assurance to not feel like crap on a regular basis, particularly if they live in a very conservative area where the gay “lifestyle” is regularly lambasted. Feeling like crap/feeling unloved can easily lead to depression, which is a risk factor for suicide. Its the third most common cause of death in adolescents. This is from the Boston Children’s Hospital website: “Children and adolescents often consider suicide because they feel so overwhelmed and hopeless that they can’t imagine things getting better.” From Percent of students grades 9-12 who reported seriously considering suicide:16 %. Percent of youth suicide deaths that are males: 81 %. Annual number of youth (age 10-24) who receive medical care for self-inflicted injuries: 157,000. Annual number of youth suicides each year (ages 10-24): 4,600.

          Is it clear yet that there is a problem? Clearly, these stats cover lots of kids with different problems, and certainly they are not all gay. But it is also certainly a critical public-health issue.

          And who is standing up for these kids? Many other kids would become targets of bullying themselves if they defended a kid who is being picked on in this way. A lot of the adults in this forum sound like they wouldn’t stand up for a gay kid who was being bullied, either, although maybe that is just my interpretation–I would be happy if it were inaccurate.

        • Nancy wrote: ” If we were talking about just one organization with an exclusionary policy in the midst of an otherwise accepting and welcoming societal climate–no big deal” But that’s exactly the situation we’re in Nancy. The BSA surveyed 30 other organizations (community, youth, partners, etc.) and 28 of those organizations opposed the BSA’s membership policy. One didn’t care and slightly disapproved. And the last one approved (I would guess that must be the American Heritage Girls). So the BSA was in a very lonely club of two. We were isolating ourselves. Now that we’ve changed our policy, our only partner in the old club has stormed out of the room and cut off all ties.

        • I would differ from you and say American Heritage Girls stood by their principles and against lowering their standards. I have served in other organizations such as 4-H and 4-H accepts all comers and lives by a code of conduct that acknowledges that some children are very secular and have no standard to live up to. We provide a safe place and keep it orderly for the time we have them in our charge and teach them the skills 4-H promotes and it is a fine organization reaching multitudes of children. Boys chase girls at Camp and vice-verse. I never thought of BSA as tat kind of secular organization. I always thought of it as a higher calling to young boys and men to achieve and grow into men of high ethical and moral character. BSA is not 4-H, Boys and Girls Club of America, Big Brothers and Sisters or YWCA or YMCA.

        • Fred here is the latest on lifting the ban on homosexual youth in scouting. The California Senate voted on Wednesday to approve a measure that would strip the Boy Scouts of America of its tax-exempt status, along with other public charity youth groups that discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation, among other protected statuses.In his floor speech on the measure, bill sponsor state Sen. Ricardo Lara (D) noted that, unlike the Boy Scouts, the Girl Scouts, 4-H clubs, Boys & Girls of America and YMCA are all open to gay members. Ricardo went on to argue that the organization’s anti-gay policy violates California law.
          If the measure is signed into law, the Boy Scouts will have to pay taxes on membership dues, donations and all fundraising activities.
          The Boy Scouts voted last week to lift the ban on openly gay scouts, but the organization’s policy against gay leadership remains intact. Fred we tried to tell them so but who are we were just a couple of narrow minded old men as Bob Basement, Mike and db has stated. I believe that the National Board should hold a special meeting to reinstate the ban. I see no other way out. When you are talking about paying tax’s on all income of the BSA in California it will be devastating. A very sad moment for the California BSA if the bill is sign in to law. Trenton Spears

        • Admitting “Gay Adult” Leaders is not on the table, for now! I bet it will “be on the table” soon in CA.

        • Reminds me of the old saying “If you ride the fence, all you get is a sore butt!” BSA wanted to have it both ways and split the baby. I speculate that BSA will allow Units in States which discriminate against free speech with punishment by taxation to sign an operating agreement with LGBT organizations to go ahead and accommodate all manner of bad behavior.

          You wee right, Trenton. It never stops with compromise with LGTB organizations and homosexual advocates. They seek full capitulation with a restriction on your free speech rights. Man’s law will trump God’s law every time and the US Constitution be damned. California just threw free speech and freedom of association out the window..

          BSA is not a business. Let’s see how many millions BSA is willing to spend in California to fend this off.

      • Not any more and may God bless them for their principle.

        Memorandum of Mutual Support – Dissolution Statement
        It was with great disappointment that American Heritage Girls, Inc.Board of Trustees received the news of the change to the Boy Scouts of America’s membership standards. It was our sincerest hope the voice of the majority of those associated with the BSA would be heard and that the BSA would continue the amazing 103 year legacy of its founder to prepare young people to make ethical and moral choices.
        Unfortunately, the organization chose to step away from that commitment. As a result of leaving its time-honored traditions, the BSA has left American Heritage Girls with no choice but to dissolve our Memorandum of Mutual Support. We do so with a heavy heart. We have enjoyed a mutually beneficial relationship with BSA through the years. However, the American Heritage Girls Board of Trustees has decided that we cannot in good conscience continue in a formal relationship with the BSA.
        As an independent, faith-based leadership and character development organization, we want everyone associated with the American Heritage Girls to know that our board members unanimously affirm the AHG Statement of Faith and its Scriptural foundation,and we are committed to continue providing a safe environment for every girl involved.

        • Good for them! Nice to see someone standing up for values. Time to set up American Heritage Boys now, I suppose. We’ll be able to by BSA properties cheaply as they wither on their PC vine.

      • AHG is *not* a part of BSA. It is a separate organization. In some parts of the country, BSA has explored some partnerships with AHG, and there is one session at Philmont Training Center this summer on that cooperation. But they are not a part of BSA. BSA includes the Scouting programs of Cubs, Scouts and Venturers, and the Learning for Life programs that include Explorers. No all-girl programs.

    • Already read it. Agree with it. Not morally straight, Lied before he confessed to being gay. Probably did it to make a point for homosexual “rights.” Wanted to break the rules ta the appropriate time so they hopefully would pass him on. Kudos to the Eagle Board. I would have done the same thing.

      Why are you worried? I am sure BSA will “fix” all of the intolerant mistakes of the past and confer upon him the title if homosexual eagle Scout.

      • And I am sure that it terrifies you. he went through Boy Scouts being openly gay to his troop leader and never had issues with other scouts or leaders. He deserves his awards.

        • Not if he lied to get them. Surely you agree he violated Scout Policy to advance to his Eagle Board? Are there no standards which can be enforced anymore? I am beginning to wonder for some of you on the other side.

        • I have no feeling for this kid except sadness that he felt he had to violate policy to earn an award he did not qualify to receive and did it willingly and with forethought.

      • He was told to keep his sexuality secret from the Eagle review board. But in the end he couldn’t do it . The young man did the work he deserves the award

        • I understand clearly that is your opinion. Mine, obviously, is quite different.

        • Not about an issue as big as homosexuality. Certainly not to gte an award I am not entitled to receive.

        • You never stretched the truth or omitted something to get a better raise or job or out of a ticket?? Or fight with your wife? Marriage is also a award which has a basis in truth. Again I will pray for you as the only perfect being I am aware of is God.

        • No, I have not. My profession is one of the few that has a set of ethical standards. I would never conceive of lying to a policeman. I think they call that obstruction of justice. Sure, I sometimes argue with my wife and many times over the time I spend in Scouting. She was a fantastic Cub Scout Leader and her Den went on to Eagle for 7 of 8 Scouts. She has a bad taste for Scouting now.

        • off topic Fred, if you needed a kidney and the only one available to you was from a homosexual would you take the gift or refuse it?

      • Fred, BSA is not allowed to ask about sexuality so how did he lie? It just said you could not be open and avowed. The policy said did not say you could not be gay.

        • He lied to himself Todd every time he said the Scout Oath and Law.

          Is that not clear? Setting aside “didn’t tell anyone,” he was in willful direct violation of Scouting Policy. He said “trustworthy” every time.

        • How did he lie to himself? Your version of morally straight may differ from his, mine version is to have good moral values, which means not to have sex without feeling love for the other person and being in a committed relationship.You yourself admitted to not having good moral values in your younger years, but later being saved by God. Is this boy any different from you in that way ( not the gay thing ) God loves all his children, we are all created in God’s hands and heart so I do not believe God will damn this young man or any other homosexual person

        • Trying to stay off the God track. You folks get very excited when you think you can marginalize a Christian by painting him/her in a box

          Did not teh policy say that “homosexuality is incompatible with Scouting” and “homosexuals could not join.” Please confirm.

          How now then, could he not be lying to himself.

          I’m trying to avoid making this a religious issue. The argument does not require it. BSA is not a Christian organization as I have also said 1,000 times. But, I was a leader because it was compatible with Christian beliefs. .

        • love thy neighbor…..and the only judge is life is God- so please Fred quit judging unless you are claiming to be God.

        • yet another misdirection play to avoid the point. I have spent hours talking theology on this list and it is tiresome because so many are un-equipped but I am grateful also that it sends me back to the Word. Jesus said to not condemn in the sermon on the Mount. We are to avoid bad (unprincipled and immoral) people in our personal affairs which is exactly what I do.

          A few notes from a study guide I use:

          “Strong’s Concordance notes that the word translated “judge” in Matthew 7:1
          can also mean “condemn.” What Christ was saying was that, as we are incapable of seeing a person’s heart or knowing his or her relationship with God, we are not to take the place of God in making judgments about someone’s motives or eternal salvation. And we should be humble, knowing our own weaknesses and sins.

          However, in other sections of the Bible, Christ says very clearly, “Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks” (Matthew 12:34) and “a tree is known by its fruits” (Matthew 12:33). While we cannot see hearts, we can see—and judge—actions. There are times God calls on us to discern others’ actions because of their effects on us. For example, the Bible tells us to avoid angry people and those whose sins may rub off on us (Proverbs 22:24 ; 1 Corinthians 5:11-12).

          Hebrews 5:14 tells us that the spiritually mature are “those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.”

          We are not to judge where a person stands with God, because we are simply incapable of doing so. But we must be able to “discern both good and evil” in the actions of ourselves as well as others in order to grow in wisdom and avoid falling into problems ourselves.

          Seems clear to me to avoid those who would lower your moral standards.

        • Fred Cooper I admire your honest consistancy on the current forum. Fred keep going because you have many friends who support you on this forum The famous saying from Will Rogers is The only problem with the Boy Scouts is that we don’t have enough of ‘em”. I can honestly say the only thing wrong with this forum is that we don’t have enough Fred Coopers. God Bless you. Sincerely Trenton Spears

        • This forum does not have enough Trenton Spears either. Keep up the good work and God bless!

        • Sorry Fred. The oath and law do not say “I promise that I am NOT gay” It is only from your religious perspective that you believe the oath and law condemns homosexuality. It all depends on whether or not you believe homosexuality is immoral, and that depends on your religion. My religion does not teach that homosexuality is immoral. It does teach that we should treat everyone with respect.

        • Yet another misdirection play to avoid the central issue. He knew homosexuality was incompatible with Scouting and lied to himself and others in direct violation of Scouting policy.

          Obviously, that part of the argument is fine with you. You understand he lied, you accept it because he could not be awarded otherwise and feel he should get it anyway even though he lied. Your spouse must be a Saint or you have an open marriage to think that way.

        • “. . . and 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.”

          Nothing here either about homosexual or heterosexual so how did he lie?

        • Is your definition of being honest means a gay person has to tell others he is gay?

          Do you go around telling others you are straight?

        • Todd, you have now resorted to the same debate tactics you used on ither threads. Don’t respond to a clear answer, make up an unrelated question. Like I said before, how do you argue with someone who won’t address the question directly.

          Honest is following the rules Todd and telling someone in authority when you know you have broken the rules and suffering the consequences.

          did you actually raise kids? did you teach them to be honest and suffer teh consequences when they told a lie?

        • Fred, yes I have two wonderful kids. My son is close to earning First Class and is with a very active vibrant troop. He was just voted Scribe and Historian and he is thoughtfully carrying out those roles. I’m proud of him. My daughter helped start a GSA at her school. She is not gay, but one of her best friends is. I am proud of her fighting bullying and harassment and encouraging tolerance.

        • It sounds like they are great kids.

          But what did you teach them about lies and deception and the consequences? To go to the authority figure in the organization or to a parent or adult leader and confess and accept what comes next? That is what I taught. It allows for mercy on the side of the authority figure/mentor because a kid screwed up but recognized it and is prepared to accept the consequences for it.

          The Scout was honest at his convenience I believe and there was no room for allowing that action to pass and the award was denied.

        • To answer your question directly. Yes we teach our kids about honesty and they surprise us all the time with it. We try to lead by example. I had miles posting to my FF account that weren’t mine. Called the airline to let them know about it. Hotel forgot to charge us $360 for sailboat rental when I checked out. Told them about it. Properly pay at movies and events based on age. Our kids pay attention and see these things.

          I just don’t think being gay or straight is anybody’s business other than the person that is.

        • But Scouting has made it a part of your and my life and every other person that joins Boy Scouts. The existing policy handled your situation very well. I did not have to know. Now, I am sure someone will be trying to tell me. Being “out” is part of being homosexual. I do not need or want to know but know I have to know and have to be trained how to deal with it. I’m far enough along in life, I’m happy where I am on sexual matters and how they relate to children and instruction.

    • Why is this a tragedy????

      A good lookin rich boy from San Francisco didn’t earn his Eagle because his SM didn’t follow the rules and lead him on.

      And his parents went on a media campaign. Money will do that for you, A poor kid in the same circumstance from Oakland wouldn’t even have made the newspaper.

      The finisher for me was Ellen handing him a check for $25k I believe……….. I hope he donated it a good cause.

      No ill will, But I am sure there have been hundreds if not thousands of boys bounced or left voluntarily from the program for being gay. Why is this one any different or special???

      • then blame the Scout master not the boy no boys should have been turned away from scouting in my eyes for being gay.

        • Tani what else was the Scoutmaster suppose to do he was obedient to the laws of the BSA. I am sure after December 31st 2014 the Scoutmaster will obide by the laws of the BSA even though his personal convictions tell him otherwise . That is more than I can say for the homosexual scout. He lived a lie and broken the code of honesty. Trenton Spears

      • Tragedy wouldn’t be the word I would use to describe this, perhaps, but I do understand the intent behind it… I think it’s shameful that he was denied his Eagle. I think it’s also shameful that another ‘hundreds, it not thousands of boys’ were bounced or left the program for being gay. The difference for this one is that they made it very public, so people obviously know about it. The check from Ellen… At his age, I would have used it for a good cause… college.

  22. Our Troop is having our weekly meeting on Tuesday night…..No one has called to cancel or resign…….We are camping next weekend and theme is fishing.

    Meeting at the church tomorrow morning to get that Patrol boxes shorted out……One of the PL’s complaining his chef kit was missing some things……and honestly they could use a good cleaning inside and out.

    I hope the weather is warmer than this weekend…….We typically have great luck where we are going. Fish is on the menu Saturday night, they better do well or it is PB&J for dinner.

    Scouting is still alive and well……….Sorry so many of you have lost your way.

    This is their journey not mine…..I understand that and will continue with the BSA until the boys stop coming or I am not physically able.

    I would have stayed either way the vote went…..The boys are what matters not all this adult bickering and paranoia…..

    • Bob, thanks for your service to the boys in your troop. It can change lives.
      And thanks for this common sense wisdom. Very little has changed. Nothing is perfect. In any organization we must focus on the good, and try to change that which we feel is bad.
      Carry on!!!

    • well said, you have an open mind and are able to see past anything and able to see the true purpose is about helping the youth of the BSA instead of turning away because something they didn’t agree with happened. you sir have my respect.

    • Bob Basement the 5% of those making Eagle Scout over the 103 years of the BSA is below the 7% in 2012. Bob you mentioned that some have lost their way what are you refering to. This is not adult bickering or paranoia it is about the future of the BSA that on this vote have clearly changed the program for the majority in Scouting who believe in Timeless Values that the BSA has supported for 103 years. Sincerely. Trenton Spears

      • Trenton, I think that almost all of us believe in the timeless values of Scouting. Some think that the recent change has co-opted them, some think that they were co-opted when the homosexual ban (as distinguished from the social ostracism that some have asserted has long taken place in Southern units).

        You and I would probably disagree on what should be considered the timeless values of Scouting. If we are to continue the dialogue intelligently, I think we need to use terminology which has an agreed-upon meaning.

        • Mike God is the source of all intelligence he says homosexually is a sin and that is good enough for me. After all the millions of money and all the law suits the BSA spent on keeping homosexuals out of scouting suddenly they became intelligent and lifted the ban on youth scouts leaving out adult scouts you call this timeless values. I call it betrayal to the 60% of those who filled out the BSA surveys that did not want the ban lifted. Mike who are you to set the standard of intelligence. Trenton Spears

        • Trenton,

          I didn’t call the reversal timeless values. I just indicated that timeless values is a grand sounding term with no definite meaning. I don’t set the standards of intelligence, but you should use yours instead of spouting terms with no definite meaning.

  23. Alright, so since everyone seems to be voicing their opinion, whether in opposition or acceptance of this policy which seems to be 50% of each side, i will say that i am at a neutral standpoint with this entire situation. I believe that sexuality has no place at all in scouting. period. no man, woman, or youth should ever express or implement their sexuality, whether it be straight, gay, bi or whatever you are. It just is not the kind of thing that belongs in the youth organization, one because it is not a factor in developing ones mind. plus, i see no reason to beat on the BSA, they compromised their policy based on a multitude of surveys taken by parents and other volunteers of the organization as i recall. They listened to what people had to say and voted on it like a democracy does. However, people don’t seem to understand the very tight situation the BSA was in. If they didn’t progress forward with modern views, they would lose a multitude of members as a lot of funding, which in turn could cripple the organization in the end because the world runs off of money. However, if they went to far and accepted homosexuals completely, it would also cripple the members, by having the Mormon Church and Catholic church abandon the organization. it would go the same way either way and they made a compromise that even those churches agree with or at least thought the policy was fine. i don’t agree with either side of the argument as the people against the new policy are just voicing hate and calls for violence(from some Facebook comments) which is wrong and unjust, and they are angry because something did not go their way. while on the other end of the spectrum you have the other half of the BSA that want to push forward and allow leaders but also don’t see how fragile the situation is and how far it can go without crippling the organization. i mean, their is no need to badmouth and organization that’s trying all it can to stabilize itself and make compromise to both ends of the spectrum. if they leaned all the way to right or left, it would cause the same destruction, however, people just don’t open their eyes and have an open mind to see. I personally think it was good that the BSA sent out surveys online to be taken, it was a good step at getting what people thought and getting input. and based of the input this new policy that has been approved was crafted. I guess just no one will be happy with whatever the decision that is opposite of what they believe but in reality this topic has cut the members and parents and volunteers in half, 50% believe one thing while the other 50% believes the other. Not everyone will agree with what you believe in and multiple people will think differently. the human race needs to become more open minded and stop bashing the organization that is trying its best to compromise with both sides. so this is me, voicing what i think like everybody else.

    • JR Albor your facts are not true on the survey over 60% of the surveys sent to the National BSA did not want the ban lifted. Wayne Brock and his gang of munipulators some how convinced some of the delegates to vote against the survey results and lift the ban anyway. JR if the results reflected anything it was don’t lift the ban. This was not a 50/50 survey. Please re-look at the results of the survey. Sincerely, Trenton Spears

      • Didn’t over 60% of current scouts favor getting rid of the ban. The 60% for the ban was scouters. Perhaps some of the voting adults were listening to the voice of the boys.

        • Brian The survey sent to Scout Leaders and parents were a filled out form that reflected that 60% of those responded did not want the ban lifted. I believe the National Board had already made up thier minds to not pay any attention to the survey. I believe that they thought that the survey would turn out in favor of lifting the ban when it didn’t they proceded to make sure that it passed anyway. If the issue was discrimination lifting the ban on youth only did nothing to end the discrimination. The whole issue is redicules and did not serve anyone in a fair and unbiased manner. Sincerely, Trenton Spears

      • I’ve researched this 60% number a few have mentioned and it seems to be 61% of responding Scouters not wanting to change the current adult and youth policy. Does not reference changing policy for youth only. But anyway… BSA policy is not set by direct vote of all registered adults.

        BSA government would be a good Citizenship discussion for Scouts. Is the BSA a democracy, republic, franchise, etc !

  24. I would appreciate robust thoughtful answers to the following:
    Help me understand the logic of why a longstanding CO would drop a unit now yet they supported that same unit say 30 years ago prior to BSA implementing a ban on open gays?

    Similar question for you long time leaders. Some of you were leaders before the ban was put in place, yet now when the ban is lifted you want to leave. BSA was okay for you before they implemented a ban, yet now it is not after they remove it.

    One more question. Do those that supported the ban check out every organization their kids join to ensure that the organization also have a ban on gays? Example, if your kid does travel soccer, do you ensure that the soccer league has a gay ban?

    • I don’t understand turning away from BSA that at one time had no ban. If you supported it before the ban, why not support it when the ban is lifted?

      • Todd I am sure you have gone over the laws of scouting and have come to a reasonalble conclusion that there was a moral law against homosexuals in scouting prior to the 1990′s they were banned because of many of the moral standings that the BSA represented. I have been a member of scouting for 28 years and a Boy Scout in 1949. I can honestly say that any one who declared that they were homosexual prior to 1990 would have not have a snowball’s chance in hell to remain in Scouting at least in my area. There was no written BSA law banning Homosexuals from scouting but there certainly was a moral law that ended up in Courts that sided with the BSA in all cases brought before them to ban homosexuals from Scouting as a result of these Court rulings along with the BSA core values I believed that the BSA would never abandon my trust in their leadership and now they have betrayed my trust with the new policy. I joined the BSA based on the Scout Oath and Law and all the principles that the BSA stood for. If Scouting allowed homosexuals in Scouting when I became a Leader in the 1960′s I would not have joined the BSA this does mean I am a homophobe it just means I have core values that were compatable to the values of the past and present BSA. Lifting this homosexual ban is the greatest blunder of all time for Scouting the claim that it was lifted for the boys sake is a smoke screen less than 3% of the youth of America is Homosexually inclined surely this was lifted for advancing the complete Homosexual movement. The division runs deep and the future of the BSA has been jeopardized by the lifting of the ban homosexuals in scouting. There is no holding back the complete homosexual movement it will penetrate every corner of the BSA till it smother’s the values of the BSA that they stood for over a 103 years. Should I remain in Scouting I have been given a reason not to. GOD HELP US ALL. Sincerely.Trenton Spears Scoutmaster

        • Trenton,

          Give it up. The BSA has lost its Moral Compass. They will wander about like a fart in the wind and dissipate in time. When a group takes the middle of the road they end as road kill in due time. Just as homosexuals have a shortened life span with their diseases, so will the BSA. The self destruct button has been pushed.

          Step up as a leader in Royal Rangers, Royal Ambassadors, Christian Service Brigade, Awana, or this new para scout organization that is forming soon. I am sure there will be many others joining you. You will be a welcomed seasoned leader with morals, a moral compass, and map.

          The BSA is going to unravel like a poorly lashed pioneering project. The frappings are already loosened and coming off quickly. The campfire that had fellowship will now have vacant seats. The embers that one warmed other embers will be removed and the fire will cool down and go out.

          You can serve God in some other group. You sound as though you are there for the boys and not for politics. There are boys all over that you can teach. You are trained as a leader, so go lead somewhere else. It really isn’t that hard. There is life outside of the BSA.

          I would like to see Fred Cooper’s “Robust outdoor program handbook that only needs more adult leaders to surpass anything BSA has to offer.” Perhaps he will post his church website for further information.

        • Kelly Horton Thank you for your encouragement I admit I am down but I am not out. I have been taught that anything worth fighting for is worth all a persons energy. I am a youth leader in my Church and a Scoutmaster I recieved a double blow first from my LDS Church approving the allowing of youth homosexual in Scouting and second from the BSA 1400 Delegates who voted against 60% of the members who sent in their written request to keep the ban on no homosexuals in Scouting. I will continue the fight as long as God will allow me for he is the source of my strength and my life. Give up! “Never” I will take on my Church when they are wrong and the BSA when they are wrong anytime, anyplace and by any means till the great Jehovah says otherwise. I contribute $275.00 every year to Friends of Scouting and this year it will stop. The message that the National BSA Board is saying this is for the boys is hogwash to change the values for 97% of the boys for maybe 3% at most is utter nonsence. This is the work of Satan no doubt about it. The BSA was the last great stronghold for Americas youth and Satan knew it. Kelly here is an insert from a news organization in todays paper. { Quote: The homosexual-rights group GLAAD said it and other like-minded activist groups will now encourage “gay” youth to participate in the Boy Scouts. But spokesman Ross Murray said “the ban on gay adult leaders is still a major barrier for many families and organizations.” He hopes, the Washington Post reported, that as homosexual youth “demonstrate their dedication to the program; hopefully it can change the culture of the organization from the inside.” Unquote }
          What about the dedication of Scouts for over 103 years doesn’t their contributions count for something ? 854 delegates of 1400 does not think so. Kelly here is what the BSA will face and it will distroy the values of the BSA. It will have more changes than quills on a porcupine. Sincerely, Trenton Spears Scoutmaster

        • Trenton, where you equally upset prior to the 1990s when there was no ban?

        • Todd I don’t get upset I express the truth as I know it based on my experiances over the years. I can truthfully say that it has been the last year that I have become discouraged at the possibility that the BSA would lift the ban on homosexuals in Scouting and my comments on Bryans forum over the last year have reflected my passion on this issue. Todd if homosexuals were allowed before the 1990′s I would not have joined the BSA in the 1990′S we had a nation that had a moral compass and so did the BSA. The Nation started declining in the late 1990′s and now we have a nation so divided that anything go’s. Here is what the BSA is facing after the vote on May 23rd a clip from a newspaper today { The homosexual-rights group GLAAD said it and other like-minded activist groups will now encourage “gay” youth to participate in the Boy Scouts. But spokesman Ross Murray said “the ban on gay adult leaders is still a major barrier for many families and organizations.” He hopes, the Washington Post reported, that as homosexual youth “demonstrate their dedication to the program; hopefully it can change the culture of the organization from the inside.”} Is this what the BSA wants “Change the culture of the BSA from the inside from homosexuals” Todd need I say more Sincerely, Trenton Spears

  25. Question: The new policy does not go into effect until January. Does that mean scouts that come out today would be kicked out, but could be reinstated in January so long as they have not yet turned 18?

    • Better chance of getting a glass of water in Hell than homosexual boys being kicked out over homosexual admittance or action at this point in my opinion. Individual adult leaders will stand by policy but truly believe will be overturned after a private meeting with the leader with paid BSA employees or sympathetic parents of other or his own Troop. We’re all just trying to gte along after and and the new policy takes effect just six months away.

      • That’s what I thought Fred except I wasn’t thinking about getting a drink of water in any place warm. I know we have sparred being on separate sides of the matter, but don’t you think boys would be better off if you stayed and passed along your knowledge? You’ve been with Scouting a long time right, even before there was a ban? Why can’t you continue now that its partially lifted?

        • The ban was implicit. Just as you say no mention of homosexuality before the 90′s meant homosexuals were accepted, I would have never joined BSA knowing there were homosexuals in it.

          Youth will still receive outdoor skills and character education training from me and through the help of God I pray it will be effective. Any boy, including homosexuals are free to fellowship with our Church knowing that we will teach homosexuality is a sexual tendency that must be resisted to become a member of the Church. My Church has a robust outdoor program handbook that only needs more adult leaders to surpass anything BSA has to offer. I hope many like-minded adults will invigorate the Program in my faith and many others and provide a safe, secure place for children to grow and develop with no discussion of human sexual tendencies. Teens will have a safe place to discuss biblical sexual responsibilities for loving committed relationship with the opposite gender in marriage.

        • Although we disagree on the issue I respect your service and continued service to BSA. Thank you.
          As an ASM, I look forward to passing on my skills and additionally learning a few things myself along the way.

        • You have been very reasonable in this discussion.

          My recommendation to you is to be prepared for adult homosexual leaders and an attack on duty to God in the next few years. These may all be fine with you and that is your right.

          Look within yourself and discover where Scouting will no longer meet the standards you have set for a character education program and be an organization of high moral standards if that is important to you. Take a principled stand when that day comes. Its worth the fight, even if you fail and close a chapter and move on.

  26. BSA has made a big mistake. I’ve removed the BSA decal from my car and will have nothing more to do with the organization. Have fun at summer camp, boys.

    • We’ve already paid for summer camp and, ironically, the inaugural weekend of the History of Scouting Trail in DC so we’ll attend those but, after that, we’ll be looking to OnMyHonor or ourselves. When the BSA voted to abandon the Oath and Law, they voted to abandon our membership, support, and goodwill. And another, fine, time-honored institution bites the dust. Alas.

      • I am having a family meeting with my Troop parents and Scouts before Summer Camp. Being a Southern Baptist Troop and the fact that Frank Page has been outspoken on this issue, we have to deal with it quickly. Plus, one of my ASM’s send a message to out Troop list offering his opinion that since we are Southern Baptist the Church would most likely surrender its Charter and change the Program to Royal Ambassadors. Anyone who did not want to join could transfer he guessed. That immediately started questions about Summer Camp since they have already paid. Not helpful.

        We will meet make a decision once we have met. I am not optimistic. Most parents encouraged their Scouts to join only because BSA was compatible with Christian beliefs at the time.

        I have an Eagle Scout Court of Honor this Summer. I have already been told he would have left had he not already completed the requirements. He has a heavy heart but BSA changed the program to be unacceptable, not him. I assured him his award the highest honor of a principled and moral organization at the time he earned it.

        • Ole Bob, do you read the newspapers? President of Southern Baptist Convention. But. we’re all autonomous Churches and can make our own decision. It does weigh heavily when a man of Christian principle says the new policy is misguided and wrong for the youth of America.

          But, like you say, I would not expect that to mean anything to you.

          Fred Cooper

          Date: Mon, 27 May 2013 13:54:25 +0000 To:

        • I have to say, where exactly is Jesus in this conversation? Last I looked, he was the champion of society’s outcasts and scorned. He, himself, isn’t quoted as saying one doggoned thing about homosexuality being a sin. If he had a grave, I sometimes think he would be rolling over in it with all the excluding and judging being done in his name. These are children we are talking about, and you are essentially spitting on them with your righteousness.

          If anyone ever has an urge to start a religious movement in my name after I am gone…..PLEASE! Get over the urge! No hating in MY name, if you please.

          I also don’t see how excluding gays from Scouting makes all that much difference. Don’t our sons go to school? Won’t they eventually get jobs? Won’t they be around other gay kids or adults sooner or later? Might there not be a “bachelor” uncle, even in church? How about we teach them how to get along with people who are different? Is is that important to have one “pure” place where they can at least not know that the boy next to them is questioning his sexuality? (Because there have always been gay kids in Scouting.) Besides, sexuality has never been a topic of conversation on any Scout outing that I have been on.

        • I have largely stayed out of this conversation but would just like to offer you the scripture you seem to think does not exist regarding homosexuality. I am only offering to you so you are informed, not to argue or engage in a battle of words. I simply am just offering you proof that the bible is clear on homosexuality. I would also suggest to anyone (for or against this issue) to seek out the facebook page (link included) ‘Ex-Homosexual Through Jesus Christ’ and watch/listen to testimonies of people that have by God’s grace left their homosexual lifestyles behind. It is also an amazing site (it is not a debate page it is informational) Thank you – God bless us all!

      • So you are attending camp because you payed for it, but would not if you had not paid yet. Seems like a few hundred dollars should not matter if values are at stake. I hope staying because you paid gives you time to realize that things are not changing that much. Boys are boys, let’s leave them to grow up with our guidance as we have in the past. This will not ruin scouting unless the adults abandon the boys.

        • Oh the summer camp they will be attending is going to be fun…

          I wonder how respectful they will be to the camp, staff and equipment….

          So what are they going to do for a week….Not much point working on merit badges….Or am I missing something.

        • >>>>Oh the summer camp they will be attending is going to be fun…
          I wonder how respectful they will be to the camp, staff and equipment….

          I’m hoping you’re not suggesting that a handful of kids being allowed to remain in Scouting is going to be an excuse for less-than-honorable behavior from boys who disagreed with the decision.

          I would hope they will be just as respectful as they would have been last summer, as that would be the kind and honorable way to behave. The staff will be largely the same folks that were there last summer. Most likely none of them had a vote in this decision. Some probably agree with the new policy, and some disagree, just as it was with the old policy.

          The equipment will be used by largely the same folks who used it last summer. Many boys will benefit from using that equipment this summer, just as they have in the past and will in the future, if it is properly cared for.

          Because gay Scouts who are open about it will not be able to become camp staff or troop leaders once they are 18, there is a strong incentive for them NOT to be open about it.

          I seriously doubt there will be any significant difference between a Scout’s summer camp experience last year and one this year, unless they choose to create an issue themselves.

        • A few hundred dollars means a lot to families of young children as you should know. BSA don’t refund nothing to its supporters as we all know. Current policy is no homosexuals in Scouting so this will be the last year a family will not have top be concerned with overt homosexual behavior at Camp. They’ll be asked to leave. I expect it will change as the policy is adopted.

        • I don’t know about your council. Ours will only hold back the troop’s initial deposit (about $150) and would refund the rest, so families would not be out a great deal of money — if camp is still several weeks away, as all of ours are. That said, I’m glad your Scouts will get to go to camp. Most of the boys in our troop will be going to Northern Tier this year, and one to National Jamboree, so I get to take just the youngest group to our council camp. When my older son was no longer interested in merit badges (as perhaps your soon to be ex-Scouts will not be), he focused on outbound hikes and on lashing a big catapult together. Perhaps some of your boys will like spending their extra time in the Trail to First Class area coaching younger boys, if they are not working toward advancement anymore.

        • Karen, Our Camp is in 10 days and our Council refunds zero this close of $200. $200 might not be much to your parents but it means much to mine.

          Our Scouts are going to Camp this year.

        • Fred said, “$200 may not mean much to your parents.” Where do you get that? What did I say that indicated that? I live in a rural, low-income area. In fact, our Boy Scouts had to raise the full cost of their own camps, including Northern Tier, by spending hundreds of hours cutting and selling firewood. I did *not* say anything that indicated $200 didn’t matter; I said that our camps are several weeks away, and our council would only have retained the troop preregistration (which averages to about $20 per Scout), not the individuals’ dollars. Our Cubs put together scholarships from three different sources and also fund-raise to go.

        • Karen, these are your exact words: “I don’t know about your council. Ours will only hold back the troop’s initial deposit (about $150) and would refund the rest, so families would not be out a great deal of money — if camp is still several weeks away, as all of ours are.”

          Its not worth the argument but just to clarify: You seem to clearly be saying that your hold-back policy was $150. Our Camp is $200. I included our information in my response because that is what we would lose. You seem to be saying $150 is not that much to your folks. Now you say $20.

        • $150 *troop* deposit, Fred, not individual. That’s how we do it here — the troop registers with a deposit, and individuals pay the troop, which passes the money on to the council later. All we would lose is the $150 *troop* deposit. Hope that is clearer.

        • And you know what, Fred? That is *exactly* what I said the first time: the TROOP’s initial deposit of…. And now, look at your words. You say I said one thing the first time and that NOW I say something different. *You* are twisting my words to fit your purposes. I said from the beginning, “the TROOP’s initial deposit” not an individual deposit would be lost. If you are looking for some rich insensitive urbanite stereotype, you are barking up the wrong jacaranda.

        • Only seeking clarification of the initial statement. I have that now. I do not pre-suppose anything about yout Troop. Just stated losing $200 is a lot for my families. Hope that covers it.

        • Probably missed a couple of posts here. Been holidaying and working. My clarification is complete ;).

          We also lose the $100 Campsite reservation we have to pay if we do not show for any reason. Remember, $1 per meeting and only one hour week.

        • >>>>Current policy is no homosexuals in Scouting so this will be the last year a family will not have top be concerned with overt homosexual behavior at Camp. They’ll be asked to leave. I expect it will change as the policy is adopted.

          I think the BSA’s statement on the new policy makes it clear that “Any sexual conduct, whether homosexual or heterosexual, by youth of Scouting age is contrary to the virtues of Scouting.”, and “No member may use Scouting to promote or advance any social or political position or agenda.” I think that makes it clear that “overt homosexual behavior” is and will continue to be unacceptable at Camp.
          Most families allow their children to go to church youth groups, to play sports, to do activities such as 4H, and to attend public or private school. The vast majority of these organizations, even those run by churches, do not currently bar gay kids from participating, and generally it goes smoothly. I believe the BSA’s new policy isn’t going to make any dramatic changes to what a typical kid experiences at camp.

        • If the female venture crew members dress the same way the did at the Jamboree Shake down…..I have complete faith that we will have our first youth conception at a Jamboree. Completely inappropriate.

        • Strange, because I’m sending my daughter to Jamboree with exactly the same pack as my son: three field uniforms, five microfiber t-shirts, hiking socks & boots, hat…. The only difference is that the girl is fighting the Advisor’s instruction to zip off the pant legs. But everyone has the same dress code & uniform requirements. She went to Sweden for the World Jamboree, too — and nobody came back pregnant despite the different culture at World Jam. I certainly hope you are not telling me my daughter is not safe around your Scouts, or that they can’t behave around a girl who wears a Powderhorn danglie and an NYLT belt buckle….

        • @Fred Cooper –
          >>>>Its not worth the argument but just to clarify: You seem to clearly be saying that your hold-back policy was $150. Our Camp is $200. I included our information in my response because that is what we would lose. You seem to be saying $150 is not that much to your folks. Now you say $20.

          I believe she is saying that the TROOP has put down a $150 non-refundable deposit (not $150 per Scout, but $150 total), which comes out to about $20 per Scout. So if they must lose their deposit, they will only lose $20 per Scout.

          Regardless, I think you all will find that Camp will not be any different this summer (after all, the policy doesn’t go into effect until January). It will be more-or-less the same staff, and the same campers, as it has been all along.

          “Scouting is a youth program, and any sexual conduct, whether heterosexual or homosexual, by youth of Scouting age is contrary to the virtues of Scouting, and … no member may use Scouting to promote or advance any social or political position or agenda.”

  27. The BSA should allow people on the federal government’s list of protected classes of people into the program — no more, no less. That action would limit any controversy about membership. The BSA also needs to be pro-active on its PR; it always seems to be behind the 8-ball when dealing with the media. This time, due to a lack of foresight, the BSA allowed the gay issue to turn into a media circus, and the tail wagged the dog. The media loves to break a potentially controversial story first, especially when it’s a “gotcha” — a seemingly paradoxical story like this one that makes someone or something look stupid. Let’s take the steam out of the media’s “first-strike capability”.

  28. Wondering how many Current Eagle scouts will send their Medals back to national in protest?????

    I wonder if the media will cover it?????

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