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With this vote, Scouting calibrates its moral compass

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  • #46
    I am going to be real interested to see our councils number for 2014....see how many units actually fold and boy quit.

    I bet it is going to be fewer most think

    Comment


    • Hal_Crawford
      Hal_Crawford commented
      Editing a comment
      I agree. I am not saying that these were empty threats but I think when units and CO's start really looking at the options they will stay with BSA. I am sure that if our CO pulled the charter--which I doubt will happen--we would recharter at a nearby church that has a Cub pack but no Scout troop. Net change to council would be zero.

    • eaglewolfdad
      eaglewolfdad commented
      Editing a comment
      BD, agree with your forecast. We had a church in our council pull the plug on a pack and large troop this past week, The CO will also be retaining both units trailers, tents, bank accounts etc. The units are scrambling to say the least. THis is in an area that the parents cannot afford to replace the CO's property, however they are looking at all recharter options. I wonder how many other CO's will do the same.

  • #47
    Hopefully, Basementdweller and Hal are right and I think that they are. The stated losses are 200 - 400,000 but I wonder if that is based upon losses of COs being counted as losing all of the members. I believe that some COs would said that they would leave will not. Some will no longer be COs but I am certain that some of the youth from disbanded units will join another unit. One way or the other, I think that the final loss will be less than feared. We can certainly hope so since our youth still need Scouting.

    Comment


    • Krampus
      Krampus commented
      Editing a comment
      KDD, it is not just the Baptists. I have heard a few Catholic units are having intense meetings with their CORs. There seem to be many units that are in jeopardy. Our DE told me that FoS donations are off 85% this year in our area. If this is indicative of what is going on in other areas then BSA better hope those corporate donors they were trying to appease with this vote pony up the money or BSA is going to be hurting. BD is right, the numbers for 2014 will be very interesting to see. One council membership person I spoke with thinks they may be off by 5-7% next year which is an unheard of drop from one year.

    • Hal_Crawford
      Hal_Crawford commented
      Editing a comment
      Our local Catholic diocese has said they are "rethinking" their relationship with the BSA. There are some very strong, well established troops that I suspect will not go quietly.

    • King Ding Dong
      King Ding Dong commented
      Editing a comment
      The policy is entirely consistent with Catholic Doctrine. Sexual conduct is still banned. What's the issue? You receive Communion from a gay priest ?

  • #48
    If any of you truly think that this change was prompted by anything other than National trying to bring back the big corporate and agency contributors back to the fold then you are more naive than I ever thought possible. This is NOT about morality or inclusiveness at all rather it is a sham promotion by National to save their precious little empire from going under financially. A scout is "morally straight", so I wonder if they plan on rewriting or redefining the scout oath next, which has been the BSA code since its inception, in order to cater to to market demands of some big donors and a very small and vocal group wanting to join the BSA.

    Comment


    • vol_scouter
      vol_scouter commented
      Editing a comment
      Krampus,

      The BSA brought the issue up because two charter partners requested it. These were two main line protestant denominations. So the BSA had a duty to bring the issue up. The original idea that was considered would have included adults but would have given individual units total control. The study and listening that the BSA performed this spring indicated that the membership was not ready for changes in adult membership requirements but were in regards to youth. Those results were reflected in the outcome of the vote.

    • vol_scouter
      vol_scouter commented
      Editing a comment
      Krampus,

      The BSA brought the issue up because two charter partners requested it. These were two main line protestant denominations. So the BSA had a duty to bring the issue up. The original idea that was considered would have included adults but would have given individual units total control. The study and listening that the BSA performed this spring indicated that the membership was not ready for changes in adult membership requirements but were in regards to youth. Those results were reflected in the outcome of the vote.

    • Krampus
      Krampus commented
      Editing a comment
      @ VolScouter...the results that I saw said that 61% of those responding did not want a change in the BSA policy. If you have a link to different results I would love to see them.

  • #49
    Originally posted by BadenP View Post
    If any of you truly think that this change was prompted by anything other than National trying to bring back the big corporate and agency contributors back to the fold then you are more naive than I ever thought possible. This is NOT about morality or inclusiveness at all rather it is a sham promotion by National to save their precious little empire from going under financially. A scout is "morally straight", so I wonder if they plan on rewriting or redefining the scout oath next, which has been the BSA code since its inception, in order to cater to to market demands of some big donors and a very small and vocal group wanting to join the BSA.
    Total BS. I'm so sorry if this doesn't match your bigotry, but I'm so tired of this. YES it is about morality and inclusiveness. To claim that everyone that has been pushing for these changes over the years have been doing it for completely cynical reasons is insulting! The reason I have been writing letters, speaking to other scouters, and advocating for change these past years is because it is the moral thing to do! And no, it's not a "very small and vocal group", it's lots of current and former scouters that see the exclusion of good people as wrong! Get it through your head: this is not something imposed on the BSA by a small group of outside moneyed interests. It was change largely driven from within the BSA. Did the opinions of corporate and other large donors have an influence? Of course they did. Are there some people at National that were primarily motivated by the opinions of the donors? Most probably. But without the support of LOTS of individual scouters, councils and charter organizations, this change would NOT have happened.

    You don't have to agree with the change, or like it. But deal with reality what has really happened. I'm sorry if you are disappointed and hurt. But stop trying to blame it all on a small group of evil people out to destroy the BSA, Mom and apple pie. THAT is the naive fantasy. And please stop insulting and casting aspersions on all your fellow scouters that believe in and have been working for change for a long time. It IS a moral issue, we do believe in morality, and we are following our moral beliefs!

    Comment


    • Merlyn_LeRoy
      Merlyn_LeRoy commented
      Editing a comment
      No Krampus, the constitution precludes public schools from owning & operating private club units that have religious requirements for membership.

    • Rick_in_CA
      Rick_in_CA commented
      Editing a comment
      Really Pack18Alex? Just a small group of evil bullies? So everyone that supported this change is evil? I'm an evil bully? Really?

    • Krampus
      Krampus commented
      Editing a comment
      @ Merlyn...most of the units I have seen that use public schools are chartered through a "Friends of" organization, and yet the local schools do not allow the Cubs to meet at the school. So the point still stands, even in the face of the recent change the local school district in question will not allow this unit who just lost their charter to meet at the school, even though it will be chartered through a Friends of XYZ entity. It is a political decision and nothing more.

  • #50
    Originally posted by BadenP View Post
    If any of you truly think that this change was prompted by anything other than National trying to bring back the big corporate and agency contributors back to the fold then you are more naive than I ever thought possible. This is NOT about morality or inclusiveness at all rather it is a sham promotion by National to save their precious little empire from going under financially. A scout is "morally straight", so I wonder if they plan on rewriting or redefining the scout oath next, which has been the BSA code since its inception, in order to cater to to market demands of some big donors and a very small and vocal group wanting to join the BSA.
    You are right to say it's a business decision, but wrong to say it's to bring back donors.

    There have been surveys in the past two years sent to Scouters and parents of Scouts by email to collect feedback on the organization. They've been making a point when something that's being changed or added recently to say it's in response to demand identified by those surveys. I can imagine this issue came up a lot in the comments, and so they did the reasonable thing and started talking about it and thinking about its viability. They've also said that internal review intention was leaked in January and became the huge listening project. After listening to angry phone calls and supportive phone calls for months, they decided to make the resolution they made to propose a change which would better reflect how a majority of Scouters and Scouting families feel while also being able to pass with the support of Scouting's major chartering partners. This was done to prove that they are listening when the majority speaks, and that Scouting respects its customers enough to reflect their wishes and to try and find common ground to stand on so that focus can remain on the boys instead of politics. That's just good business. Scouting represents faith and values, not a singular set of values. If a majority of Scouters, Scouts, and Families are saying that the policy of excluding gay youth is contrary to their faith and values, then Scouting should not be dictating they represent a set of values that they don't hold.

    Comment


    • #51
      Originally posted by EmberMike View Post
      They're mostly all talk, no follow-through. The same will happen with Scouting.
      So far we had a local Pack go under because the leaders pulled their kids and no other parents stepped up to take over. Was 35 families, 23 left and no one from the remaining 12 took over. Pack done. And it is just Tuesday after last Thrusday's vote. I would not be so sure of that lack of follow-through.

      Comment


      • AZOwl
        AZOwl commented
        Editing a comment
        Then I have to blame the 12 remaining for not stepping up. Was the program not important enough to them to step up? Out of 12 families, could they not muster 5 people to fill the gap? My wife and I sacrifice a huge amount of time to Scouting because its THAT important to us that our son's are involved in Scouting. We are heavily involved in both our Pack and Troop, even though both of our children are members of the Troop, because we both understand that if you don't have a Pack, you don't have a troop.

        Pity that those families of those Cub Scouts would not invest that time in their children's future.

      • EmberMike
        EmberMike commented
        Editing a comment
        I agree with AZOwl, that's a failure of the parents more than anything else.

        If there are a number of unit shake-ups that occur like this, where either families leave or COs pull their support, those units can survive if they have a few parents in the group who care enough to put forth some effort. Any unit that completely falls apart or any kid that is denied the chance to stay in Scouting is the victim more of a lack of adult support than anything else. Parents can find other units for their kids to join, although maybe it means driving over to the next town to do so. Or they can work to keep their unit going in their own town by finding more parents to help out, finding a new CO, or creating a new CO when necessary.

        There are a number of ways to keep things going. If a unit folds up that quickly despite having a few people still around who want to keep their kids in, it's really not the fault of anyone but the parents.

      • Krampus
        Krampus commented
        Editing a comment
        Meh...you are missing the bigger point. It is the change in policy that caused this. You have scores of kids leaving because of this change. It seems in this case the needs of the few outweighed the needs of the many.

    • #52
      Originally posted by Krampus View Post
      Originally posted by EmberMike View Post
      They're mostly all talk, no follow-through. The same will happen with Scouting.
      So far we had a local Pack go under because the leaders pulled their kids and no other parents stepped up to take over. Was 35 families, 23 left and no one from the remaining 12 took over. Pack done. And it is just Tuesday after last Thursday's vote. I would not be so sure of that lack of follow-through.
      There will be much more of that. Some people really do believe the Promise.

      Comment


      • BadenP
        BadenP commented
        Editing a comment
        Yesterday three Catholic Churches in my area have decided to immediately cut all ties to scouting. The three pastors stated to the news media that the change in BSA policy runs contrary to church teaching. Today the Roman Catholic Church issued a statement to the press stating that they will be using this time until the change goes into effect to reevaluate their position with scouting. So the breakaways have begun and if the the Catholic Church in America does pull away their support from scouting how many other faith traditions will follow suit? I think National will be surprised as will many scouters as to the extent this change will impact scouting.

      • Krampus
        Krampus commented
        Editing a comment
        @BP...One unit in my area spoke to their COR this AM. The CO is going to continue doing "what they have always done" and the moment they get the first issue arising from this new change in policy they will drop the unit. They are not Baptist or Catholic but Methodist. They simply said they do not want the liability on EITHER side of the issue. Before the change the liability was on the BSA. Now if a suit is brought on one side or the other it is the CO that takes the blame. Their attorney suggested this approach.

        As BD said at the top of this page, I would like to see BSA's numbers for this year. Not the doctored ones but the real, honest numbers.

      • AZOwl
        AZOwl commented
        Editing a comment
        BadenP
        I think that one religion leaving is not at all indicative that another faith will leave. These religions, while technically believing in the same God, rarely agree on much of anything, and the fact that the Southern Baptists and maybe the Catholics pull out would not affect another religion's status. In fact, it may encourage other faiths to come on board as they might have the opportunity to pick up youth that might otherwise be involved in their own faith.

        It also opens the door to non-sectarian community service organizations to get involved.

        The bottom line is, that for each family, they will decide whether to stay or not. For each family that wants to stay, if they feel strongly enough to stay in the program, they will find a way to make it happen, regardless of who they charter with.

    • #53
      Originally posted by ThomasJefferson View Post
      Girl Scout units have no chartering orgs. They are as big as BSA and flush with money. I have no idea why a Boy Scout unit needs a chartering org and a Girl Scout Troop is able to run out of someone's house and everyone still has a good time.

      Wait... yes I do. BSA's national leadership are morons.
      Girl Scouts are only flush with money because of the cookies.....

      Comment


      • King Ding Dong
        King Ding Dong commented
        Editing a comment
        Any we suffer because of crummy popcorn.

    • #54
      The Supreme Court decision said that BSA had a 1st amendment right to exclude homosexuals despite anti discrimination laws because of it's clear, unambiguous national policy that defined homosexuality as being against the values of the organization.

      Now that BSA has compromised on those values, I would expect that lawyers will again be filing lawsuits to impose state and local anti discriminatioons laws against Scouting, and I would expect those lawsuits to win.



      In short, before very long every aspect of Scouting will be subject to state and local anti discriminations laws --- in my opinion.

      The USSC did not give Scouting the ability to pick and choose what part of its policies it would continue and remain exempt from anti discrimination laws

      Comment


      • King Ding Dong
        King Ding Dong commented
        Editing a comment
        It has a clear, unambiguous national policy that defines sexual activity at scouting age as being against the values of the organization. Not my opinion. Fact.

      • Merlyn_LeRoy
        Merlyn_LeRoy commented
        Editing a comment
        I've pointed out before that every CO of a BSA unit must have the legal right to discriminate in every way the BSA requires them to discriminate -- that's why the BSA lost public school charters. The BSA can change their membership rules any way they like, the only concern is if their COs can legally enforce the identical requirements, and since the BSA only REMOVED an exclusion based on age, and the BSA already discriminates on the basis of age, every current legal CO must have the legal right to enforce the new BSA membership requirements.

        The USSC did not give Scouting the ability to pick and choose what part of its policies it would continue and remain exempt from anti discrimination laws

        Of COURSE they did. The BSA, as a private organization, IS NOT SUBJECT TO ANTIDISCRIMINATION LAWS. The supreme court didn't even ADDRESS the BSA's discrimination after they found that the BSA was not subject to antidiscrimination laws. They can exclude blacks, Jews, left-handed teenagers, anyone at all. They're a private organization.

    • #55
      Originally posted by Woapalanne View Post
      There will be much more of that. Some people really do believe the Promise.
      I'm all for a healthy discussion with all sides represented, but can we just stop with the constant inappropriate invoking of the Oath and Promise here? Not everyone who believes on God follows the hard line on religion and homosexuality. Not all churches frown upon homosexuality. It is really narrow-minded to view the God part of Scouting as being universally anti-gay when Scouting encompasses so many different faiths, cultures, ethnicities, etc.

      Please stop lumping all of them together in this.

      Comment


      • BadenP
        BadenP commented
        Editing a comment
        Mike- You are so very wrong. The Scout Oath and Law are the binding elements that makes the BSA what it is and stands for. If you do not believe that the Oath and Law is relevant then you really don't understand what scouting is all about and really have no place in scouting. It is like saying the Constitution has no relevance in the running of our government. The problem with this change is that it does conflict wih the scout oath and the words morally straight, so it comes down to are the Oath and Law just a bunch of meaningless words that we should just ignore or throw out, or do they represent what the BSA was founded on and stands for. This is not a gay or antigay issue as much as a test of the moral compass of the BSA whether it has any true substance or not.

    • #56
      My local council published an article in the local paper on this issue.

      http://svmbc.us4.list-manage.com/tra...5&e=fde9b07c74

      Comment


      • #57
        alcohol is used to sanitize things all over the world from pre-injection sites to hand sanitation. People have been using common cup for hundreds of years and the number of infective outbreaks are not really documented because of the lack of statistics (if there really are any of them.) While I wouldn't promote common cup for grape juice, I haven't heard of any problems with wine. It's pretty much accepted in the Christian community that the issue is more psychological than physical. They offer alternatives for those who are concerned with whatever issue. It always reminds me of the time I was visiting at Cape Canaveral and the moon rock was available to be touched by the public. The lady next to me in a very disgruntled voice said she would never in a million years touch something that has been touched by so many people of questionable cleanliness. I smiled and asked her if she touched the doorknob on the way into the building. It brought a quick halt to our brief conversation. I'm thinking one can get a lot worse infection/disease from the stairway railing than they would from a cup of alcoholic wine. This post is in response to #44, it wouldn't let me post it in the comment area.

        Comment


        • #58
          Hmmm alcohol is used to sanitize things all over the world from pre-injection sites to hand sanitation. People have been using common cup for hundreds of years and the number of infective outbreaks are not really documented because of the lack of statistics (if there really are any of them.) While I wouldn't promote common cup for grape juice, I haven't heard of any problems with wine. It's pretty much accepted in the Christian community that the issue is more psychological than physical. They offer alternatives for those who are concerned with whatever issue. It always reminds me of the time I was visiting at Cape Canaveral and the moon rock was available to be touched by the public. The lady next to me in a very disgruntled voice said she would never in a million years touch something that has been touched by so many people of questionable cleanliness. I smiled and asked her if she touched the doorknob on the way into the building. It brought a quick halt to our brief conversation. I'm thinking one can get a lot worse infection/disease from the stairway railing than they would from a cup of alcoholic wine. This post is in response to #44, it wouldn't let me post it in the comment area.

          Comment


          • #59
            Hmmm alcohol is used to sanitize things all over the world from pre-injection sites to hand sanitation. People have been using common cup for hundreds of years and the number of infective outbreaks are not really documented because of the lack of statistics (if there really are any of them.) While I wouldn't promote common cup for grape juice, I haven't heard of any problems with wine. It's pretty much accepted in the Christian community that the issue is more psychological than physical. They offer alternatives for those who are concerned with whatever issue. It always reminds me of the time I was visiting at Cape Canaveral and the moon rock was available to be touched by the public. The lady next to me in a very disgruntled voice said she would never in a million years touch something that has been touched by so many people of questionable cleanliness. I smiled and asked her if she touched the doorknob on the way into the building. It brought a quick halt to our brief conversation. I'm thinking one can get a lot worse infection/disease from the stairway railing than they would from a cup of alcoholic wine. This post is in response to #44, it wouldn't let me post it in the comment area.

            Comment


            • #60
              Originally posted by BadenP View Post
              Mike- You are so very wrong. The Scout Oath and Law are the binding elements that makes the BSA what it is and stands for. If you do not believe that the Oath and Law is relevant then you really don't understand what scouting is all about and really have no place in scouting. It is like saying the Constitution has no relevance in the running of our government. The problem with this change is that it does conflict wih the scout oath and the words morally straight, so it comes down to are the Oath and Law just a bunch of meaningless words that we should just ignore or throw out, or do they represent what the BSA was founded on and stands for. This is not a gay or antigay issue as much as a test of the moral compass of the BSA whether it has any true substance or not.
              I can't believe how ignorant and boneheaded you are!* People like you have no place in scouting (I can be denigrating too. See how it improves the discussion?)! I get that you disagree with Mike's interpretation of what "morally straight" means, but does that really mean he doesn't value the Oath and Law, or thinks it's not relevant? Really?

              Look, people of good conscience can disagree. I am tired of all this declaring of everyone on the other side of this issue as: "doesn't really care about scouting or the kids", "unfit for scouting", "evil bullies", "doesn't believe in the Oath or Law", etc. Can't we just assume that our fellow scouters are moral and caring people that we just happen to disagree with? Do we have to cast aspersions and say they are bad people?

              A Scout is Courteous, A Scout is Kind.

              *To clarify, this is sarcasm.

              Comment


              • BadenP
                BadenP commented
                Editing a comment
                Rick- A rather childish response on your part, My point was simply does the Scout Oath and Law have any relevance or substance anymore or are we and National willing to throw it all under the bus in order to be "politically correct" and to try attract ing the corporate and agency donors back to the BSA? It is kind of like saying I am a good Christian but I believe the Bible is just a book of fairy tales. You can't have it both ways either the Oath and Law represents what the BSA stands for or they are just a bunch of meaningless words and should be eliminated. This is not about being "ignorant" or "boneheaded" it is about an organization standing for something mirrored in their oaths, rules, laws or standing for nothing and losingall their credibility, you can't have it both ways, which is what National is currently attempting to do.

              • moosetracker
                moosetracker commented
                Editing a comment
                BP - What Rick & EmberMike have stated is not that they do not believe in respecting or following the Scout Oath & Law.. But, simply they do so by how their belief system due to their religional background interpret morally straight to be, and it is not at all in step with the belief system of a conservative religion.. They have acted to bring about change because the conservative interpretation of morally straight is in total disagreement of what their interpretation is.. So by taking the Oath and Law seriously they pushed (and still continue to push) for fair treatment for all people in their community, and an end to bigotry.. While conservatives see following a moral compass as (I know I will butcher this since I stand on the liberal side) but something about picking out who is morally worthy and who is not, and only working and associating with who they feel measure up to their standards.. (Or something, I am sure one of you will correct my interpretation..)
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