Packsaddle, I could see how one survey would be better. I read that they are sending out 1.1 million surveys. With only 3 million scouts, that's real accurate. They'll know unit by unit.
The process is odd but I think it's slow for a reason. This is a big change. Change is hard. Maybe they're trying to minimize the fallout. All the talking and blogs and angry comments and grandstanding media sessions are just filler to give people time to come to terms with this. Some will go no matter what but a lot will probably realize that scouts is still a good thing and hopefully figure out how to work the system to get where they want. I don't want to see people leave, no matter their view on this.
To me, this process started when the chairman of the board, or whomever it was, said he wanted to change things from the inside, and didn't get replaced right away. That's when I knew this was coming.
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Current BSA Policy Vs local option poll Page Title Module
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- May 2007
- Mar 2013
- Feb 2008
I received the survey (answered it for local control, and that my concern is that this entire issue is a distraction from our mission), as did my wife (who is also a registered leader). Our Council is having a meeting to nominate/elect/select our representative as well. I WOULD have been in that meeting, but since our Council eliminated the "parents of" type charter organizations, I am no longer a COR.
The process is odd but I think it's slow for a reason. This is a big change. Change is hard.
I just completed the survey for leaders. Some of the questions led me to believe that they are not only considering the local option but also considering a uniform policy to prohibit discrimination against gay leaders and scouts.
The local option is a compromise policy much like the Missouri Compromise which was an attempt to allow states to choose to be slave and free states. The Missouri Compromise failed and I think the local option policy if enacted is doomed to fail as well. You can't split the baby. Eventually the BSA will have to adopt a uniform sexual orientation non-discrimination policy.
The current policy is already a compromise: gays and lesbians _are_ allowed to be members of BSA as long as they keep quiet about it. Many of the folks expressing anti-gay sentiments don't seem to realize this. Which means it has not been a very useful compromise because it has not prepared the anti-gay folks for the next step.
The trick here is bringing the inevitable nondiscrimination policy along slowly enough that most of the opponents will eventually stop struggling and either accept it or slowly fade away without huge, sudden losses. The real issue is whether there has been enough time for that to happen. It has been less than a year since the policy was reaffirmed, after all. "Local option" is the next logical step in the slow march, but doing it now may still be a bit sudden, particularly for large organizations controlled by a small number of conservative leaders, such as major church denominations. They could see remaining with BSA as "guilt by association" even if their own local units can ban gays. They would have little difficulty pulling out, and have the wherewithal to adopt a substitute program more to their liking. That may happen even if the policy is not changed this year -- if they see the writing on the wall, they may start making plans to withdraw anyway.
And the writing is on the wall. Society is moving very fast on this issue, and the military's dropping of their Don't Ask/Don't Tell policy is a strong precedent for BSA to drop its Don't Ask/Don't Tell policy. And even if BSA declines to make the change now, we have a federal law charter, and we can expect to see efforts in Congress to amend our statute to make us instantly inclusive.
I think possibly "Will you leave?" is the most important question for the voting members going to the BSA annual meeting in May. They have to find the balance between movement toward the inevitable and not crippling the organization. That may mean a compromise other than the local option. Perhaps appointment of a commission to do a long study and report back with recommendations for the 2014 annual meeting (delay for a year but keep it on the table). They may want to consider more radical options, such as creating a parallel Scouting program under BSA's Learning for Life/Exploring program, which already has a non-discrimination policy and already operates units (career-oriented Explorer posts) supported by our local councils. That would allow the current policy to remain in place in traditional units that did not choose to switch over to LFL/Exploring, and thus allow a smaller, more conservative, religious-based Scouting program to continue on into the future even as BSA promotes its more progressive, 21st century, fully co-ed and diverse adventure-based LFL Scouting program. Win-win for BSA, which would keep both Scouting programs under its umbrella.
- Nov 2002
>>Niether old nor far right. But I do enjoy firing up liberals who................ I also enjoy firing up conservatives the same way. You see, the problem with the far left and the far right is they …bla bla bla. .
We may or may not agree on things but it's those types of attacks that prevent constructive dialog
the BSA will lose, short term, regardless of what happens.
No gays vote, corporations and some churches will leave
Yes to gays vote, Corporations and some churches will leave
No vote or postpone, the BSA leadership will appear weak and indecisive.....some on both sides of the fence will leave.
No win, in the short term.
Dan that would be an interesting turn of events....
The congress amending the BSA's charter with a nondiscrimination policy.
Puts a smile on my face.
- Dec 2007
I think a win, i.e. reaching more kids and thus increasing membership, is possible by ending all discrimination (gays, atheists, girls) via local option. We need to get back into schools, military bases,...
My $0.02 or more likely 2 aspirin as it will be painful no matter what at this point.
I think a win, i.e. reaching more kids and thus increasing membership, is possible by ending all discrimination (gays, atheists, girls) via local option. We need to get back into schools, military bases,... My $0.02 or more likely 2 aspirin as it will be painful no matter what at this point.
What do we do about the Scout Oath if we let atheists in?
Being pro-God isn't as much of a problem as being anti-gay, so there is unlikely to be the same kind or degree of opposition to that BSA policy as to the anti-gay policy. Additionally, BSA's stated position on the religious element is very reasonable and flexible. Unlike discrimination against homosexuals, duty to God permeates every element of our program, and I think it would be impossible to offer a "local option" on God. If BSA had to drop its belief that attention to religious life is important, we are talking about massive changes to our programs, our publications, and our advancement process, right down to altering the language of the Scout Oath and Scout Law. And then we'd lose churches who were okay with dropping the anti-gay policy.
If you have been involved in scouting very long, you have had the scout tell you they don't believe in god. Whether it is for spite or they are trying to figure out their personal belief system, they tell you.....I have never considered tossing a lad for this and it has never been an issue for my unit.
Wolfeagle.....I answered your first question.....Far as scouts own goes....We never have them at the troop or pack level because the PLC decides not to do it.....The Pack because every single parent is in a rush to exit camp in the morning...... In your eyes that makes me less of a scout leader....I am good with it....
- Feb 2001
Originally posted by perdidochas View PostI think a win, i.e. reaching more kids and thus increasing membership, is possible by ending all discrimination (gays, atheists, girls) via local option. We need to get back into schools, military bases,... My $0.02 or more likely 2 aspirin as it will be painful no matter what at this point.
As an aside, here's a billionaire former scout on the issue:
ALLEN: Should the Boy Scouts of America rescind its ban on gay members and leaders?
GATES: Because it’s 2013.
- 1 Like
Originally posted by Merlyn_LeRoy View PostOriginally posted by perdidochas View Post