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  • #61
    Scoutingagain: I believe you, I don't know if you can find anything on it because the victim was a minor, but I do believe you.

    And Scoutwolf, I'm glad you are involved in Scouting with your sons. (I'm assuming your involvement with the Cubs is because of your son(s)). I'm sorry your experience in Scouting as a youth wasn't very enjoyable. Hopefully you'll help your sons's and their friends have a better experience.

    Yours in Scouting,
    Sentinel947

    Comment


    • #62
      Homophobic means an irrational fear of homosexuals or homosexuality. I think the OP is referring to those commenters who believe that there is a gay conspiracy to recruit young men into their ranks, that all gay people are pedophiles or that gay folk are unable to restrain their sexual impulses.

      Others view homosexuality as immoral like the consumption of alcohol or caffeine, committing adultery, or cheating on a tax return. The latter wouldn't be considered homophobes.

      Comment


      • #63
        The couple things I really do not understand on either side of this issue:

        1) Why do so many folks see it as either pro-gay or bigoted?

        I don't endorse or condone the lifestyle. In fact, my personal beliefs state it is a sin and is morally wrong. HOWEVER, I also view intolerance and prejudice as sinful. As humans, we all have sins, smoke, cheat, drink, gluttony, gossip, etc... we don't explicitly throw the human (adult vol. or scout) out because of ANY of these things, except sexual preference?

        To have local option is BSA in effect stating, "hate the sin, not the sinner" - and if its that big a deal to you... go find a unit who's 'values' align the same as yours and be a member there.

        Tolerance is NOT an endorsement or advocation of the lifestyle, IMHO.

        2) WHY would BSA just kick the can to the local CO with regards to lawsuits and picketing / etc? If the CO is a religious organization - well, they are more protected legally than the BSA national is in regards to being a private organization with private membership requirements. The supreme court has already rules on that.

        As for demonstrators, or picketing, or Op-Ed pieces in a paper... they could be doing that right now at the local unit level! What makes you think they will begin once BSA national policy moves to a more central position from where it has been in the past? That makes no sense... BSA moves closer to acceptance, so those in the LGBT community would then intensify their public outcry?

        3) The only real issue I see is in the logistics of unit camping. This can be handled on a case by case basis with the youth and adult leaders involved. Being homosexual is one part of a personality. We have youth currently who like to bunk together because their personalities mesh, and we have some we cannot put together because their personalities clash. When in doubt, a scout ALWAYS has the option of tenting alone (or just sleeping out under the stars - as has become the fashion lately in my son's troop).

        The only other issue I can really see coming up - is the male youth in a crew / post that wants to declare their homosexuality in order to use it as justification to tent / shower with the females in the unit... Hey, I'd use that approach when I was 15 if I thought it stood a chance.

        Bottom line - I respect folk's conviction on the issue. If it is that big an issue, then you and your son would have a decision to make IF their unit's local option stance is in conflict with your personal belief system. You can either dislike and abide by it, or you can change to a unit that aligns with your personal belief.

        Otherwise, its really going to be a non-issue in most units, IMHO.

        I don't honestly think it will be cause for a huge influx or exodous in membership numbers either way. Time will tell.

        Dean

        Comment


        • #64
          Re: tenting arangements.

          I have had openly gay scouts in my troop, both boys and girls. Tenting has simply never been a problem either for them, the other scouts, or the parents. They simply slept in a 2, 3, 4 or 6 man tent with 1 or more other scouts of the same sex and no one batted an eye lid.

          If someone was uncomfortable sleeping in the same tent as them I would simply have ensured that there was a descrete reshuffle.

          Trust me. Tenting is not rocket science. In practice you will find it is the easiest part of the change to deal with.

          Comment


          • #65
            Thanks sentinel for the comment. I actually dont have any children yet. I was just helping out a friend and I realized how much I really did miss scouting.

            I wasnt trying to imply that national was kicking the can down the road in a negative way. Just my initial gut reaction.

            I agree, tenting is not an issue with me. Just make sure you have all that squared away before you go.

            Comment


            • #66
              I agree with Skip. Tenting is usually easily accommodated. We have a few boys who sleep as "singletons" in hammocks or backpacking tents because they want more privacy. We had a boy leave a tent and sleep on a picnic table over some silly issue. They adapt.

              I read the NYT editorial and they made a good point. BSA throws the local CO's to the wolves with a local option--can you imagine the national pressure on a single church if they handle it badly?

              Comment


              • #67
                So what national pressure is there on Catholic churches to accept Gay priests? or even members?

                Yes, units will have to stand by their own principles. They won't be able to hide behind a national policy. Assuming the change in policy goes through, I'm perfectly comfortable with the unit across town sponsored by the local Catholic church continuing to select their leadership anyway they want. The Methodist Church that sponsors our unit would likely accept a gay indivisual, assuming there are not other issue to prevent membership. But I'm not aware of a long list of gay prospects chomping at the bit to sign up.

                SA

                Comment


                • #68
                  OK, I'm on a quest. One of these threads, I'm eventually going to get an answer. I can be very persistent:

                  I guess we can just pick a random thread on this topic now, they're so mixed up...or maybe it's me.

                  Anyway, I'm still trying to understand the reaction in which someone decides to leave scouting, not because their CO has lost its ability to discriminate, but because OTHERS have gained the freedom to choose NOT to discriminate. I just don't get it. Why does one person NOT want another to have the same freedom that THEY have?

                  Comment


                  • #69
                    As a former active Catholic who worked closely with a dozen or so priests over the years--the gay priests are there! Nuns too. I assume they are caste or try to be just as the hetero priests are. And yes they do slip up time to time and do not get kicked out though they usually get disciplined.

                    It is just that they are not openly gay or practicing gay. I think the danger for "the religious" is the loneliness without a family as they age hence the occasional relationships between two folks.

                    Comment


                    • #70
                      "So what national pressure is there on Catholic churches to accept Gay priests? or even members?"

                      It's a complex issue, but there are already openly gay priests and gay members of the Catholic faith.

                      Most Catholic high schools have experience with gay students and programs in place to ensure that they are treated with dignity and respect. What they absolutely do not do is summarily dismiss them or try to "cure" them.

                      In the still very unlikely event that you have a scout admit he is gay, and if you are in a Catholic sponsored unit (or even if you're not), the local Catholic high school would probably be a good place to start for some guidance on how to handle the situation.

                      Comment


                      • #71
                        In past years there was a certain amount of social respect for others that one did not flaunt their dirty laundry in public. There was a certain amount of decorum that people followed so as to not offend others. However in this day and age, that Facebook posting telling me what you had for breakfast really didn't do much for me except wonder about what other things you were saying elsewhere. If one is to feel free to speak openly about themselves and others, what are they saying about you?

                        When I receive a cell phone call, I leave the area and find privacy to carry on the conversation so it won't interrupt others. It's called being courteous. I don't tell people about my home life, I don't talk about others at work, I keep most of my thoughts to myself unless someone asks me directly about it with just cause.

                        If I had a concern about someone I would ask, and if they didn't feel comfortable letting me know, I respect their "no comment".

                        I'm just thinking that A Scout is Courteous has taken it's hits over the past 20 years and probably will continue to do so for a few more. Toleration is based heavily on respecting others, their beliefs, their choices, and their privacy. I give that courtesy and expect it in return from others.

                        Stosh

                        Comment


                        • #72
                          I'm just thinking that A Scout is Courteous has taken it's hits over the past 20 years and probably will continue to do so for a few more. Toleration is based heavily on respecting others, their beliefs, their choices, and their privacy. I give that courtesy and expect it in return from others.

                          This is one of th most worthy comment made on this thread, or perhaps any recent thread.

                          Thank you. Courteous is underappreciated today.

                          Comment


                          • #73
                            packsaddle,
                            You keep asking why someone would leave. Ask that same question of the Eagles who turned in their badges. They were disgusted with the policy. This is no different. Are you seeking an argument? I think it's easy to understand: an organization known for its traditional (conservative/old fashioned) values gives in to public pressure. That's embarrassing, and might cause members to walk.
                            BDPT00

                            Comment


                            • #74
                              Anyway, I'm still trying to understand the reaction in which someone decides to leave scouting, not because their CO has lost its ability to discriminate, but because OTHERS have gained the freedom to choose NOT to discriminate.

                              So much of Scoutin' is shared, eh? Shared between lads and adults of many units and many chartered partners. Summer Camp and camporees and jamborees and round table. We send kids on their own with adults not selected by da Chartered Organization as provisional campers at summer camp and on council contingents to Philmont and SeaBase and Northern Tier and Jambo, and workin' summer camp staff as CITs, and participatin' in OA's Brotherhood of Cheerful Service. So if someone feels strongly about this issue, a change in policy is goin' to take a lot of Scouting away from their kids. For lots of troops that rely on BSA bases for high adventure, it's goin' to take all of that away for those boys.

                              Yah, sometimes I also reckon it's not da start point and the end point, eh? It's the change.

                              Folks who might be OK with their child in a public school that has gay teachers might opt out of Boy Scouting because they are upset by the change. The BSA had been a safe haven for 'em, a place they felt comfortable with as a family, that they truly trusted with their child. Then all of a sudden someone turned over da apple cart, and now Scouting is another institution workin' at cross-purposes to their family's values. More work to monitor, more time talkin' to their kids tryin' to keep 'em on da right path.

                              I reckon it feels like betrayal, eh? A stranger who doesn't care for yeh is one thing, but a friend or loved one who stops bein' a friend really hurts.

                              That's why da BSA's completely ham-handed handlin' of da issue is doin' more harm than might otherwise have been done. A long period of input, discussion and reflection done in a more open way, concludin' in a final vote where everyone at least felt like things were fully aired and everyone was thoughtful, would have helped mitigate that sudden-sharp-betrayal feelin'.

                              I also reckon what moosetracker said in da beginning is true, too. Lots of da folks who suggested that the pro-inclusion people should just start another organization rather than tryin' to take over this one really believe that. As a matter of courtesy like jblake47 says. Yeh don't come into someone else's house and **** and moan and whine and petition and try to get da owner fired from his job or da city to fine him because yeh don't like his choice in furniture. Yeh just go buy a house of your own and make it better if yeh can.

                              So it feels discourteous in some ways, eh? And yeh don't tend to hang around with discourteous folks. Just ain't worth da effort.

                              Beavah

                              (how amusin'. My b----ing and moaning seems to have been edited by da robot enforcin' appropriate courtesy. )(This message has been edited by Beavah)

                              Comment


                              • packsaddle
                                packsaddle commented
                                Editing a comment
                                Please PM me if anyone knows what happened with the 'edit' that Beavah mentioned. I'd like to know as well. Packsaddle

                            • #75
                              Packsaddle:

                              I have a problem with it because I don't believe it is true. And thank you to whomever decided to jump the gun and start making a stink even before the Board votes. Nothing like the true agenda clearly stated to wake people up. Sorta pushes that whole willingness to let people choose at the local level bs right out the door, eh?

                              Anyway, here it is:

                              http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/furor-proposed-shift-scouts-gays-policy-18369767

                              Furor Over Proposed Shift in Scouts No-Gays Policy
                              By DAVID CRARY AP National Writer
                              NEW YORK February 1, 2013 (AP)

                              The Boy Scouts of America faces intensifying criticism from the left and right over a proposal to move away from a mandatory no-gays membership policy and allow troop sponsors to decide the matter for themselves.

                              The Human Rights Campaign, a major gay-rights group that initially welcomed the BSA's possible shift, said Thursday that it was inadequate and demanded that the Scouts adopt a nationwide policy to accept gays as scouts and adult leaders.

                              The HRC said corporations that continued to donate funds to the Scouts if any troops were allowed to discriminate would lose points in an annual evaluation of how major employers deal with gay-related workplace issues.

                              Meanwhile, conservative groups which support the long-standing no-gays policy asked their followers to flood BSA headquarters with phone calls opposing any change,

                              Tony Perkins, president of the conservative Family Research Council, urged callers to persist even if they couldn't get through at first.

                              "The BSA national leadership were not prepared for the thousands of Americans who were shocked to hear that an organization that could always be counted on for standing for what's right was about to cave in to homosexual activists and corporations," Perkins said in an emailed appeal.

                              "It is so important that you keep the pressure on, to show them how devastating this moral collapse will be for the Scouts and the country," he said.

                              Similar appeals were made by other conservative groups across the country.

                              The Boy Scouts, who emphatically reaffirmed the no-gays policy just seven months ago, announced on Monday that they were considering a major change. Instead of mandatory exclusion of gays, the different religious and civic groups that sponsor Scout units would be able to decide for themselves how to address the issue either maintaining the exclusion or opening up their membership.

                              The proposal is expected to be discussed, and possibly voted on, at a meeting of the Scouts' national executive board next week in Texas.

                              Deron Smith, the Scouts' national spokesman, declined comment on the Human Rights Campaign's announcement and also denied reports that the Scouts were taking a poll to gauge public sentiment on the controversy.

                              "When we receive calls we allow people to provide feedback, but if the board decides to address this topic, it will be about what is in the best interest of Scouting," Smith said. "Regardless of what people think about this issue, America needs Scouting."

                              Many Scout units are sponsored by relatively conservative religious denominations notably the Roman Catholic Church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and Southern Baptist churches. Catholic and Mormon leaders have withheld official comment on the proposal, but Southern Baptist officials have criticized it.

                              The Rev. Albert Mohler, president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, wrote in a blog post that the new policy "is almost sure to please no one and to lead to disaster for the Scouts."

                              "Those pressing for a reversal of the national policy are not likely to be satisfied with a local option," he wrote. "They had demanded a national policy mandating the full inclusion of homosexuals throughout Scouting at every level.

                              "On the other side, those who wanted the current policy to remain in place will now have to reconsider any relationship with the Boy Scouts," Mohler added. "The scale of potential membership loss to the Boy Scouts of America is staggering."

                              Fred Sainz, a vice president of the Human Rights Campaign, said Scout board members now needed to decide "what kind of America they want to be a part of" one that frowns on all discrimination or tolerates a degree of it.

                              "The board has to make a decision one way or another," he said. "The policy proposal they're considering makes the problem worse, not better."

                              The Human Rights Campaign's president, Chad Griffin, likened the proposed policy change "to a national restaurant chain saying that it will not discriminate at its corporate headquarters, but allow local restaurants to discriminate at will."

                              To back up its stance, Griffin's organization said it would change the criteria for its annual Corporate Equality Index. To receive a perfect score, companies would have to prohibit philanthropic giving to civic organizations that have a written policy of anti-gay discrimination, or permit its chapters, affiliates, or troops to do so.

                              Amid pressure from petition campaigns, two corporations UPS Inc. and Merck & Co. announced last year they were halting donations to the Scouts until the no-gays policy was changed. For 2011, UPS donated more than $85,000 and Merck gave $30,000 to the BSA and $10,000 to a regional Scout council.

                              (equals)

                              Follow David Crary on Twitter at http://twitter.com/CraryAP

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