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About mhager

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  1. I considered replying in detail to the last few posts, but I am not. You see, I am done. I have found out what the ideas of the rank and file are, at least those who post here. Aside from a few encouraging posts, I have seen for the most part a simple minded, unquestioning adherence to rules for their own sake and a distressing inability to think beyond the superficial. I have seen shocking bigotry and unseemly venom, especially from evmori. The simple, ugly truth is that all of you who support the discrimination policy are short-sighted, narrow minded fools and I am done with you.
  2. "Look at it from a parents point of view, who are you going to trust more to spend a week out in the woods with your son, a guy like you who says you are moral because good guys are moral, or the guy whose morals are based from a higher power?" Here, at last, is the heart of the matter. It is, I would venture, exactly this idea that prompts this policy. The bottom line is that many people view Atheists as less moral and of less character then theists. Why do they think this? I don't know. It is untrue, that I do know. But it is exactly this kind of unreasoning prejudice writ large t
  3. Dan, A good question. I have two answers. First, I am quite knowledgable concerning religion. The amount study needed to reach my beliefs was extensive. I would be more then capable of steering such a conversation to what the Scout thinks and could discuss it in a historical and philosophical context, be that scout Christian, Muslim, Hindu or what have you. Second, if that Scout persisted in asking about my personal beliefs, I would politely decline, directing him (hopefully) to another leader more in agreement with the boy's ideas. 9muckracker7, No reason would suffice, of cou
  4. Fscouter, I do believe in the values of Scouting. I do not believe that those values include religious discrimination. Do you? The point I am trying to make is that the idea that an Atheist cannot be reverent, cannot do "Duty to God" by simply ignoring religion and letting others believe what they will, and be a moral leader and good example is simply wrong. It seems that many of the replies I am getting are merely saying "That's the rule" without addressing why the rule was made or how the rule benefits Scouting. I have yet to hear any good reasons for either of those two thing
  5. evmori, If you believe that religious discrimination is not immoral, that it is a good activity for groups and individuals to engage in, then further discussion would be pointless. On a personal level, I am stunned that any person who has been so involved with Scouting and the lessons it imparts could make such a statement.
  6. 9muckracker7, I to am also trying to figure out why anyone believes this to be a good policy. The idea that Atheists are likely proselytize and lead young men into amorality is clearly ludicrous. No Scout leader who is competent would attempt such a thing.
  7. Semper, In what way is my analogy ridiculous? You asserted that the good of the religious discrimination policy was maintenance of membership. I merely applied your reasoning more generally. It is not my fault you don't like the conclusions that stem from your own assertions. You also flatly state that the religious discrimination policy is a good one without supporting your position. Why is it good? Your first reason, maintenance of membership is clearly not a good reason (as I showed) so what do else do you have to support the policy? Also, blithely charging me with having a v
  8. Packsaddle, Thank you for your supportive reply. In answer to your question, I thought recently that I would see about becoming a Scout leader in the city I have recently moved to after a long absence from direct involvement. In researching what I needed to do on the web, I doscovered that as an Atheist, I was not allowed to serve. This outraged me and this forum is my outlet for that.
  9. Semper, At last, a post addressing the actual heart of the matter. You claim that allowing Atheists would cause a decline in membership. Very good, let's examine that. The extension of your statement in that anything that causes a decline in membership is bad. All right. Now, it is the policy of the BSA that Scouts not have all the liquor and prostitutes they can use at troop expense. I am aware that there is no specific policy detailing the BSA stance against this, but I think we can all agree on my stance. I think that membership would soar should troops start providing l
  10. fscouter, That is utterly not true. I made a reasoned judgement about my beliefs. It was Scouting that choose to terminate any possible relationship, not me.
  11. Rather then reply to each poster individually, I have opted to do it in one missive. Reading the replies to my posts, it seems that four general points are being made: 1. That's the rule, live with it. Well, as I said to evmori, bad rules need to be changed and discrimination against Atheists is a bad rule. 2. One theme that recurred was that the BSA has been constant and I have changed. That is correct, I have grown in wisdom and knowledge. I have made my decisions about how the world is and am happy with them. Part of that growing in wisdom has made it plain to me that r
  12. evmori says, "The BSA is a private organization that has membership requirements. Since you don't meet those requirements, you can't be a member. " I am aware of that rather simplistic stance, evmori. I am questioning the rationality of the rule. Do you understand that rule are not absolutes and can, when detrimental, be changed? This discrimination rule is detrimental to the BSA and should be changed.
  13. Wingnut, I was a member of the Boy Scouts, one who acheived it's highest honor and who honors it in return. I was excluded, I never wanted to leave. I can understand that you want somewhere your son can engage in his religion freely and in comfort. How will the presence of an atheist in the room prevent that? Do you think that a person being an atheist means they will automatically try to change your son's mind? Would you think the same of, for instance, a Wiccan or other non-Christian or even polytheistic adult leader? I want the same for my sons (should I ever have any) as you
  14. sst3rd, You say not once but twice that you think the religious discrimination policy is a good one so I gather that you strongly support it. What I am unclear on is your reason for your support. You say that it is not an idea but an ideal. What exactly is the ideal you refer to? Religion in and of itself? Is zealous adherence to the precepts of a religion on the part of each Scout the ideal you propose? I would like to respectfully request a further explanation of this. You go on to say, "As a youth member, we may not have our code (call it what you want) resolved, so in the hi
  15. While I disagree strongly with the BSA's current policy of religious discrimination, I have no desire at this time to engage in legal activity. My posting here is merely a matter of curiosity. I simply want to see if this group, which I assume is a decent cross section of Scouting (leaning heavily towards adult leadership) agrees that this is a good idea. Good leaders and good boys are being kept out by this policy. I was wondering how anyone can see that as positive.
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