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Everything posted by NJCubScouter

  1. NJCubScouter

    Body piercing

    Rooster says: I do object to the Scoutmaster who would promote these things to the boys. Even if their worthiness was not a subject of debate, a Scoutmaster should not be using his influence to promote fads or fashion. His duty is to help build character. In other words, Rooster, you think it is fine for a Scoutmaster to express his opinion, even though such expression may contradict the boy's parents, as long as it is YOUR opinion. In this case I happen to generally agree with your opinion, but I don't think that either of our opinions are the proper basis for a policy that says when it's ok to, in effect, tell a boy that his parents are wrong. If a boy's parents have approved something and you think it's in "poor taste" or is disrupting the troop, I think the issue is between you and the parents, not between you and the boy.
  2. NJCubScouter

    Body piercing

    I personally hate the whole piercing and "body art" craze. I didn't even like it when my wife allowed our daughters to get their ears pierced. Now my oldest daughter (age 20) has a pierced navel. Her boyfriend has tatoos and earring, and yesterday he got his eyebrow pierced. I think he is an idiot. (Of course, I thought that already. ) He and my daughter spent about a half hour fooling with some sort of cleanser for his eyebrow to make sure it didn't get infected. I could have told them they could avoid infection much more easily by not putting extra holes in their heads, but of course nobody listens. My daughter was talking about getting more piercings herself, and I made my feelings heard in no uncertain terms. But that is my right as a parent. I am not sure where a Scoutmaster's "place" is in all this. Rooster, let me ask you this, what if the Scoutmaster has tatoos and or an earring (and is a man), and thinks it's a fine idea for kids to do the same? Is it is ok for him to express his opinions too, even though it may go against what the parents believe? I do agree that there is a "line" and that the swastika goes on the other side of it. I have my own Scouting "swastika story". As many of you probably know, the swastika also is a Native American symbol, although I am not sure whether the "arms" point the same way as the Nazi version -- I have heard it both ways. Well, when I was a Boy Scout, I remember going on a district camporee, and when my father (the Scoutmaster) received the patches for our troop, there was a picture of a teepee (tipi?) with various Indian (as we said then) symbols on it. Including, well you guessed it, a swastika. (Pointing the way it pointed in Nazi Germany.) My father, who is not only Jewish but also a WWII-Europe veteran (though never in combat), and knew some guys who never came home from fighting the Nazis, had an absolute fit. I don't recall him swearing, which he almost never did in front of us kids, but he said (loudly) almost every other thing one can possibly say to indicate displeasure. He protested to the district and several steps up the line, I think he was on the phone with the SE at one point threatening to call the newspapers if something wasn't done. There really wasn't anything that could be done, the patches had already been distributed. But I think the council did eventually send out a letter of apology to all the troops, mentioning that anyone with a stitch-ripper could remove the swastika from the patch. I think my father had already had my mother remove the swastikas from all the patches for our troop before distributing them. It didn't make the patch look very good, but the designer should have thought of that before he put a swastika on the patch.
  3. NJCubScouter

    A whole new meaning to "Be Prepared"

    Well, it's good to see that banning gays has caused all Scouts and Scouters to follow the straight and narrow path of strict morality.
  4. NJCubScouter

    Impact of New York Anti Discrimination Law

    The "religious exemption" probably does not apply to the BSA, but it doesn't matter. Under the "Dale" decision of the U.S. Supreme Court, New York's new statute cannot constitutionally be applied to the BSA. New York's statute is, in meaning if not exact language, the same as the New Jersey statute involved in the "Dale" case. I read the New York statute and it does include "public accomodations" in the list of "places" where anti-gay discrimination is prohibited; it is the "public accomodation" section that the New Jersey Supreme Court said was applicable to the BSA. The "Dale" case gives a state high court, facing a similar case, two choices: One, find that the BSA is not a place of public accomodation under that state's law, in which case the statute probably doesn't apply; or two, find that the BSA is a place of public accomodation, in which case applying the statute would violate the BSA's First Amendment right of "expressive association," so the statute cannot be enforced in that instance. Either way, the result is the same.
  5. NJCubScouter

    Calif. Judges Possibly Banned from Scouting Activity

    Kwc, you have a point, you usually don't know what a person is actually thinking. But, like a baseball manager deciding whether to send in a righty hitter against a lefty pitcher, you generally play the percentages. This comes into play more in picking a jury, and there are stories about lawyers who excuse a potential juror based on their profession or other characteristics, lose the case, and then find out later that the person probably would have been in their favor. It does sometimes factor in when deciding whether to try to get a judge disqualified from a case -- which is very difficult. Ironically, if I were a judge, an attorney representing a gay person, who found out that I was a Cub Scout leader, might very well want me off the case. The lawyer really would have no way of knowing that I oppose the anti-gay policy -- not that my feelings would influence how I would deal with a particular case.
  6. NJCubScouter

    Calif. Judges Possibly Banned from Scouting Activity

    Kwc says: Gee, I wonder if all of the judges who are members of Augusta are going to have to give up golf? Not entirely, but at Augusta, probably yes. The basic canons of judicial conduct prohibit judges from being members of organizations that discriminate. I did a little looking around and found Georgia's rules, and there is a comment that makes it unclear how this would be be applied to a "private club." There also is a comment that basically says that if in doubt, a judge should refrain from activities that might be called into question. So I would say that a judge who belonged to Augusta National probably would at least be risking becoming the subject of an ethics complaint, though how the Georgia Supreme Court would decide the case is unknown. I would guess that in New Jersey, a judge would stand about a 75 percent chance of being found in violation if he was a member of a golf club that excluded women.
  7. NJCubScouter

    Calif. Judges Possibly Banned from Scouting Activity

    Without getting into a whole legal dissertation, I highly doubt that Gregg Shields, the ever-present BSA spokesman, is correct in his statement that a ban on judges' involvement with the Boy Scouts would be "unconstitutional." The states are generally free to regulate the conduct of judges as they wish, and in terms of constitutional rights, it is probably the most heavily regulated "profession" there is. For example, most states prohibit judges from engaging in any partisan political activity (with limited exceptions for their own election campaigns in states where they are elected), a prohibition that would be absolutely unconstitutional if applied to anybody else. I took a quick look at New Jersey's Canons of Judicial Ethics, and judges here are prohibited from being members of organizations that discriminate on various grounds, though sexual orientation is not on the list as it apparently is in California. Again, such restrictions would be unconstitutional if applied to persons other than judges. All of this is justified because being a judge is not only a privilege (rather than a "right,") but a very high privilege, and precluding someone from a judgeship does not preclude him/her from practicing law. (Being an attorney also is considered a privilege rather than a right, but the Supreme Court has held that you don't give up your First Amendment rights by being a lawyer. Clearly, when you become a judge, you do give up a chunk of your First Amendment rights, as the price for staying a judge.) Personally, I have not supported the various efforts by other opponents of the BSA policy to reduce the BSA's funding, membership, affiliations, availability of meeting places, etc. My attitude is that if people within the BSA who oppose the policy cut their ties with the BSA, any chance of ever reversing the policy will be lost. (Actually, my prediction is that within 50 years, the policy will have been changed, but I'd prefer that it happen a bit faster than that.) However, I think the California Supreme Court would be correct in requiring judges not to be members of organizations that discriminate (with the exception of religious organizations, and I'm fairly sure the California rules contain that exception even though the story doesn't say so; the New Jersey rules do.) At the very least, if I were an attorney representing someone who was bringing a lawsuit claiming discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, for example, I would sure like to know whether the judge was a member of an organization that supposedly believes that homosexuality is immoral.
  8. NJCubScouter

    Hears an unbelievable story

    ASM, and also, Rooster, littlebillie, Weekender, OGE, ScoutParent, sctmom, BobWhite, Ed Mori, and all others of the Christian faith, Merry Christmas.
  9. NJCubScouter

    Is Atheistism Gnosic?

    LeVoyaguer says: Thus could it not be reasoned that Atheism "is" a gnostic faith that accepts the "non created" elements which rejects the "created"? Well, leVoyageur, although your meaning is still not crystal clear to me, it still seems that you are trying to make atheism "fit" into a belief system that involves a deity. It doesn't fit. Atheists believe in no deity. Why try to make it more complicated than that? As for "elements" that are "created" or "non-created," there is really only one set of "elements" at issue, that is the Universe, including this planet and the life on it. Either you believe that something, somehow created all of this (either directly and/or indirectly), or you don't. If you do, you are not an atheist. (If you don't, however, you may OR may not be an atheist -- you may for example be a Buddhist, a believer in a religion that does not have a creator-god.) ScoutParent says: Atheisism and agnosticism is the domain of Satan whose purpose is to lead you to death by leading you away from God and Jesus. Of course, to an atheist (and to some "theists" as well, including me), there is no Satan. There are just people exercising their free will (which God gave us, directly or indirectly, if you are a "theist") in ways that are sometimes evil.
  10. NJCubScouter

    Is Atheistism Gnosic?

    And I'm happy for you, ASM, but you don't mind if some of the rest of us discuss other belief systems that are more confusing. Right?
  11. NJCubScouter

    Is Atheistism Gnosic?

    OK, le V, I looked up "Kolob," it looks like a fictional planet mentioned in the literature of the LDS religion, though another site I looked at did not mention LDS. One site had something about the Osmonds recording an album about it, or something. Can you please explain what the point to all this is? Also, you keep referring to "Atheistism." What is that? If you mean "Atheism," I apologize for bringing it up. Typos and misspellings are epidemic on the Internet, I have been known to commit them myself, and I try not to be one of those who points them out, unless they make the meaning unclear. In this case, your initial reference to atheism (if that is what you mean) as being related to this "gnosticism" is frankly baffling to me. Atheism is the belief that there is no higher power, and some would also include in this definition, the absence of a belief in a higher power. Gnosticism, as described in your post and web site I looked at, involves a belief in God (or "god" or "a god" or "gods" or however you wish to phrase it.) That's not atheism. You also mention philosophy. As I said before, one of the beliefs of gnosticism, which is (to paraphrase) that the "one true God" is unfathomable, unknowable and remote from human events, overlaps with "deism," which is essentially what I personally believe. I regard this as more of a philosophy than a religion, but it is a philosophy that does acknowledge a higher power. Gnosticism then seems to add the belief that the various deities that are worshipped or otherwise identified by mankind (God, G-d, Jesus, Allah, Vishnu, "the goddess," Zoroaster, the Great Spirit and so forth) are "intermediaries" between ourselves and the "one true God." I think we're still in the realm of philosophy. But where I think this gets out of the realm of philosophy is where you start giving names to these different entities and start talking about Sophia, the mother of the "Gods" that we know, which are called Aeons, and that this Sophia lives with the one true God on the planet Kolob. Or whatever. That's religion. I think that's a pretty good dividing line, that I never thought of before. When your philosophical constructs start having names and addresses, you are definitely into the realm of religion. Not that there's anything wrong with that. And if the quiet readers of this thread are confused as to what this is all about and where it is going, nobody is more confused than I.
  12. Very cute, Rooster. Or should I say, DedicatedDad, since as I recall, he once engaged in similar speculation about me.
  13. NJCubScouter

    Is Atheistism Gnosic?

    I thought gnosticism was more like deism. I guess it sort of starts out that way, in that God "is remote from human affairs, and is unknowable and undetectable by human senses." I can go along with all that. But then it gets into being more of a "normal" religion, with gods that have names and give birth to other gods and everything. (See http://www.gnosis.org/gnintro.htm ) Seems like sort of a cross between Christianity, Greek mythology and something some college philosophy major thought up after a long night of "partying." And I surely didn't know that there is a religion that says that the "God of the Hebrew Scriptures" has a father and mother. Imagine that.
  14. OGE says to me: If B-P's sexual orientation is irrelevent to you, why first imply he was gay, provide flimsy references and then run like the devil away from them and say you realize that what you have doesnt prove a thing. I didn't do any of those things. I said there was evidence, which there is. I think that what I implied was that I don't know whether it's true or not. As for the flimsy references, as I said, I am sure there is more in the book, which I haven't read. There's apparently another book that reached the same conclusion. I haven't read that one, either. I have read other things on the Internet in the past, I just didn't have hours to spend finding all of it again. You can do your own research if you'd like. I beleive having gays in boy scouts is not the worst thing that could happen, but to reach into the past and rely on innuendo and unproven claims does nothing to improve the argument. I didn't do that, either. I never related the speculation about B-P to the issue of whether gay leaders should be permitted. Some others have, but I haven't. I did say it was ironic that the speculation even exists, but that would be true regardless of whether the speculation is correct.
  15. OGE, I thought that the subject of B-P's orientation, or rather the circumstantial evidence regarding his orientation, had been discussed on here before. Turns out I was right. Check this out: http://www.scouter.com/forums/viewThread.asp?threadID=5417&p=2#id_5611 This is a post by tjhammer on Feb. 11 of this year, which as it turns out is the day before I joined the forum. It was probably one of the posts I read that day as I was deciding whether to plunge into the fray. If you want some "outside" evidence, check this out: http://faqs.jmas.co.jp/FAQs/scouting/8_USA-official-policies This document contains the following passage: -------------------------------------------- Subject: Is it true that Scouting's founder, Baden-Powell, was gay? A number of biographers have suggested Baden-Powell's homosexuality. Tim Jeal, author of The Life of Lord Baden-Powell, argues, "The available evidence points inexorably to the conclusion that Baden-Powell was a repressed homosexual." Information gleaned from Baden-Powell's diary and correspondence indicates that he often expressed enjoyment at watching young men swim naked; enjoyed pictures of nude men; expressed disdain for female nudity. Also cited is Baden-Powell's extremely close, decades-long friendship with Kenneth McLaren, with whom he served in the British Military and always made sure he bunked. (ref: The Life of Lord Baden-Powell by Tim Jeal (1990); Eminent Edwardians by Piers Brendon (1979); The Character Factory: Baden-Powell and the Origins of the Boy Scout Movement by Michael Rosenthal (1986); Advocate Magazine, 31 Dec 1992 issue). -------------------------------------------- Now, before anybody jumps on this, I realize this is not "proof." There is no "proof" on this subject. The book that is most often cited is by Mr. Jeal, and I assume that there is material in that book in addition to what is mentioned above. But like any other book, it's just a book, written by a fallible human being who has taken the facts at hand and has drawn a conclusion. It will not surprise you to know that there are many who disagree with Mr. Jeal's conclusion. Frankly, B-P's actual orientation is irrelevant to me. The existence of this speculation is sort of interesting, though. It was certainly a surprise the first time I heard about this.
  16. I think I have already said all I need to say about Mr. Lambert, but I do want to comment on this one statement by Rooster: If an atheist or a homosexual sincerely declared that he no longer embraced atheism and/or homosexuality, then I'm sure BSA would welcome that person into the fold... Clearly you are correct about the atheist, in fact the letter Mr. Lambert's SE sent to him specifically invited him to declare his belief in a "higher power" within a specified period. Mother Nature would be fine, just say you believe in something and you're in. The impression I got from the article was that the SE did not particularly care whether the declaration of belief was "sincere" or not. As I said previously, people do change their religious beliefs, but I don't think anybody really believes that someone is very likely to change under a 7-day deadline. Anyway, to the real point: I am not at all sure that the same thing would apply to an "avowed homosexual." I don't know of any evidence that the BSA would welcome back someone who says that he is not gay anymore. I do know that the letter that James Dale got from his SE did not ask him to renounce his homosexuality within 7 days or 10 days or whatever, in which case he could stay as a leader. Dale's letter said he was out, effective immediately. No discussion, just get out, do not pass Go, do not collect $200. I know that there are some who claim that homosexuality can be "cured" or "healed" or "repaired," but that there is also a lot of skepticism about whether this actually happens in a number of the alleged instances. (Do a Yahoo search on "can homosexuality be cured" and you will find some divergent viewpoints.) As for me, I think that those who say they have been "cured," are in fact likely to be suppressing their their true feelings and orientation, and are just as likely to go "back." That doesn't mean such suppression can never work. There is evidence that, ironically, B-P was such a person, who suppressed his true orientation all his life, and to anyone's knowledge, never acted on those feelings. I suspect that such people are rare. I have to say, though, that if I were one of those who believe that an "avowed gay" has a better chance of molesting boys than an "avowed straight," I would be especially nervous about a Scout leader who once proclaimed that he was gay, and now says he has decided to be straight. I think that someone who is suppressing what he is, is much more likely to experience that "short circuit" in his brain that causes a person to act in extremely destructive ways. I'm not proposing a rule or anything, because of course I think that avowed gays should not be excluded from leadership in the first place. I'm just saying that I guess that I as a parent would be especially attentive if my son's troop had a leader who had been openly gay and then "renounced" it.(This message has been edited by NJCubScouter)
  17. OK, so now we're quoting articles on economic and legal policy written by comedians. (Ben Stein, if you haven't clicked on the link. Admittedly, he is a comedian with a law degree, who once worked as a White House speech writer, for Richard Nixon. I think Forbes Magazine was so amazed to find a comedian who is a conservative Republican that they had to run this article.) I agree with part of what he says, but I think he takes parts of it too far. Personally, I think that as a social and economic commentator, Mr. Stein should stick to acting. ("Bueller? Bueller? Bueller?" Ironically, in that movie, he was playing an economics teacher, or maybe a history teacher whose lesson for the day was about economics. Great movie.) I do have to ask you, Pack38Scouter, about this statement: We are going away from the traditional scouting and Baden Powell's scouting spirit in exchange for for being pc and lawsuit freed. I'm not sure what you mean by that. How is Scouting really moving away from its traditions? And which traditions are you talking about? An emphasis on "values"? I think that has received increasingly more emphasis over the past 10-20 years -- and as you know if you have read my posts, I think the "values" thing has been taken too far in one specific case, by imposing the "values" of only one segment of society on the rest of Scouting. Or are you talking about "Scoutcraft"? It seems to me that the focus on outdoor activity is as strong as it ever was. There certainly seems to be more emphasis on "high adventure" than when I was a Scout (starting in 1969), in fact back then "high adventure" basically meant Philmont. In the troops around me, boys of high school age in Scouting seem to be looking to do "high adventure" almost exclusively, which presumably means that they have mastered the basic outdoor skills in the lower ranks and maybe even while Webelos. The numbers of boys in Scouting in my area has probably diminished, but the enthusiasm I see among those now in Scouting does not seem to be diminished at all. (I do realize that there was something of a move away from the "outdoor" emphasis in the early 70s, while I was a Boy Scout. I think that this move is exaggerated by many today. If there was a "message" that camping, hiking, backpacking etc. was being de-emphasized, the troop I was in certainly never got the message.) And when you say "pc and lawsuit free(d)," what does that mean? Is it bad that Scouting today promotes diversity (well, most of the time) more than it used to? Is it bad that more measures are taken to make sure that the boys do not get injured or abused? I assume you don't mean that, so what do you mean?
  18. NJCubScouter

    George W. Bush

    New Jersey abstains... courteously. (Apologies to whoever wrote "1776.")
  19. NJCubScouter

    Marvel Comic to unveil Gay Gunslinger

    If I were one of the gay-bashers around here, I wouldn't worry about things like this too much. The article says the tone of the comic is "campy," and it seems to be full of sterotypes about how gay people act and what they care about (leather and powder-blue superhero masks and so forth). Does this character speak with a lisp and have a limp wrist, too? Is he going to be picking out lavendar curtains and listening to Judy Garland albums in the second episode? I don't think this is going to do much to advance that "gay agenda" we sometimes hear about.
  20. NJCubScouter

    Inflammatory Post

    RobK says: Homosexuality is by definition deviancy, and God quite clearly declares it an abomination in the Bible. Deviancy from what? Deviancy from the majority? So what? Deviancy from your ideal of appropriate behavior? Your ideal does not govern everybody else. It does not require me or MY organization to exclude people. And as for the Bible (any of the various versions and conflicting translations of it), it does not govern Scouting either. What the Bible says God said about gays is irrelevant. I for one, don't believe God has any animosity toward gays simply for being gay. Is there room in Scouting for both of our beliefs? There is supposed to be. It says so in the rules. But the BSA isn't following its own rules on this issue, and apparently that's just fine with a lot of people, because rules are for other people to follow, not you. The real issue is this: how can I teach my kids that homosexual acts are sinful, then let them be in an organization that allows openly homosexual leaders? I am so glad you asked that question. I will give you a two-step guide to doing exactly that. One, get enough support for the BSA to allow each unit decide whether or not it is going to discriminate, excuse me, whether or not it is going to exclude gays. Two, join a unit that does. Mission accomplished. You have taught you son what you think is "sinful," and the Scout unit that he is part of has backed you up all the way. And it's even better than it is now for you, because it's not just some "policy" handed down from on high at the BSA that your unit may or may not agree with. It's a locally adopted rule that you and your local folks can enforce to your heart's content. Boy, if I were you I would go for that in a heartbeat. Meanwhile, you would be letting ME be in a unit that does not ram anybody's religious beliefs down anybody else's throat. That would be very helpful and friendly of you. You want to be helpful and friendly, don't you? Regarding men taking advantage of girls, it is improper for any man to have unsupervised one-on-one time with girls. I would agree with that, though I would prefer the terms "unsafe" and "unwise" to "improper." I would reserve "improper" for if anything is actually done wrong. However, the BSA makes it easy. For several different reasons, one-on-one is not permitted between an adult and a child, regardless of the gender of either. The original post in this thread, and my post about the unfortunate events in the Catholic Church, are evidence of why that is true. It has nothing to do with either the gender or the avowed sexual orientation of any of the parties. Man and girl, man and boy, woman and boy, woman and girl, precautions must be taken in every case. In some combinations, for example woman and girl, the statistics for misbehavior are certainly lower, but things have happened in that instance as well.(This message has been edited by NJCubScouter)
  21. NJCubScouter

    Inflammatory Post

    OK Eisely, I have an article for you that also does not involve Scouting. You have seen the headlines and may know some of these details, but I did not know most of them. The article is from msnbc.com and involves men using their positions of authority to take advantage of under-age girls and women to whom they were supposed to be providing guidance and spiritual care. By the logic that supports your "suspicion," I assume that as a result of this story, you wouldn't want ANY adult male working with any children, regardless of whether the may is straight or gay. _______________________________________ 3,000 PAGES ON EIGHT PRIESTS Thousands of newly released files show that the Archdiocese of Boston went to great lengths to hide priests accused of abuse, including clergy who allegedly snorted cocaine and had sex with girls aspiring to be nuns. Many of the allegations have not been proven, but one priest told The Boston Globe that he did have sexual relationships with teenage girls because he was trying to show them what it would be like with Christ. The records included allegations that one led a double life by carrying on an affair with a female parishioner. The first round of the documents roughly 3,000 pages about eight Roman Catholic priests was made public Tuesday on a Superior Court order. They had previously been obtained by victims lawyers. Many of the priests whose files were released are not among the 400 clergy members targeted in the dozens of lawsuits against the archdiocese. But attorneys for plaintiffs hope the documents show the archdiocese had a habit of transferring priests to other parishes even after accusations of child abuse. There has been no other archdiocese where the extent of the problem has been so clearly identified, said David Clohessy, national director of Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests, or SNAP. One of the eight priests, Robert M. Burns, had a history of sexual abuse before he came to Boston from the diocese in Youngstown, Ohio, the papers revealed. He was asked to serve in Boston in 1982 as he concluded a year of treatment for child molestation at a church facility. Then Cardinal Humberto S. Medeiros and at least two of his top aides Bishop Alfred C. Hughes and Thomas V. Daily knew of Burns history, but still assigned him to a parish where he would have contact with children, the documents said. The files also indicate that Law, after establishing regulations in 1993 to deal with abusive priests, continued to assign accused priests to active duty. Some of the information contained in those documents is truly horrible, said archdiocese spokeswoman Donna Morrissey, who said she could not comment on the specific allegations. Were committed to helping any and all survivors. BRIDES OF CHRIST In the late 1960s, the Rev. Robert V. Meffan allegedly recruited girls to become nuns and then sexually abused them, according to 1993 letters from Sister Catherine E. Mulkerrin to her boss, McCormack, who was a top aide to Law. Meffan allegedly would counsel the girls to perform sexual acts as a way of progressing with their religious studies. Meffan allegedly engaged in sexual acts with four girls in a Cape Cod rental, one of the girls told Mulkerrin, according to the 1993 memo. According to the records, Meffan encouraged them to be brides of Christ, and described himself as the second coming of Christ. Meffan did anything but intercourse, one woman told church officials, because he said that was for the afterlife. They were all young girls planning to be nuns, said attorney Roderick MacLeish Jr., who represents 247 plaintiffs suing the archdiocese. Meffan told The Globe the allegations in the documents were true and that he still believed his sexual relationships with the teenage girls were beautiful and spiritual, and were intended to bring them closer to God. What I was trying to show them is that Christ is human, and you should love him as a human being, Meffan said. I felt that by having this little bit of intimacy with them that this is what it would be like with Christ. AFFAIR ALLEGED The Rev. Thomas P. Forry allegedly built a house on Cape Cod for a woman with whom he carried on an 11-year affair, the documents showed. The woman had gone to him seeking advice because of problems in her marriage. The womans son later alleged that Forry made sexual advances toward him. A 1992 memo from Mulkerrin to McCormack, currently the bishop in Manchester, N.H., outlined the history of allegations against Forry. Seven years later, Law reassigned Forry, then a prison chaplain, to a job as a roaming, fill-in priest to cover for priests on vacation. He is now unassigned. An unidentified man who answered the door at Forrys home in South Boston dismissed the abuse allegations. Plaintiffs attorneys and victims advocates say the documents show that Law continued to transfer problem priests until recently.
  22. NJCubScouter

    Good news from the left coast

    Of course, these people wouldn't have to go through all this effort and trouble, and get into a public spitting match with a respected organization like the United Way, if the BSA did not insist on excluding qualified leaders, who live by the Scout Oath and Law, on the irrelevant ground that they happen to be openly gay.
  23. NJCubScouter

    Unpleasant Story

    I think the problem with this story is that it takes a very simple and tragic event -- the (alleged) molestation of Scouts by a Scouter -- and relates it to 2 things that it does not necessarily have any relationship to. One of those things is the ban on "gay leaders", which of course is the common shorthand for what the "policy" REALLY is: A ban on OPENLY gay leaders. There is no suggestion in the story that this guy was openly gay, there are clues in the story that he probably is not, and I strongly suspect that if he was, the story would just say it. So this guy (if we accept that he is considered "gay" at all) did exactly what the BSA wanted him to do: He kept his predelictions secret, and I am sure was a great model for the value of heterosexuality that the BSA holds so dear. Until he molested these boys, that is. Way to go, BSA. The second issue that should not be in this story is the one about criminal background checks. There is no suggestion whatsoever in the story that this guy has a criminal record, if you don't count the comment that the writer was unable to determine whether he did or not. If he never did this before, or never got reported before (probably more likely), a background check would not have helped. Sctmom, I do not think that mere reports will show up on the kind of background checks the BSA is talking about -- at least I hope they won't. I have had 2 experiences similar to yours with one of my children, and the "offhand comment" involved there was more serious than a lack of food. I agree with eisely and the others who have said that Youth Protection is the key here. (And notice, that is NOT mentioned in the story, and should be.) Were the parents ever told what the YP policies are? When their son told them that he was going to the Scoutmaster's house, did the parent ask which TWO adults were going to be there? Interestingly, one of the concepts behind YP, no one-on-one, actually seems to have worked to some extent in this case, but unfortunately only to the extent of catching the bad guy after the fact, and not as a protective device as it is intended. While the story is somewhat sketchy, it appears that this guy did some things with boys in a group, which resulted in him being caught, and will provide verification so it is not one Scout's word against the leader. What I am unclear on is the charge of molestation; is the exposure and the pornography considered molestation, or was there some other act that is not specifically mentioned? And was that with one boy in the presence of others, or was he actually alone with one of the boys? This story would be a better "lesson" about YP if those questions were answered. Maybe the parents thought it would be "ok" because the boys were going in a group, and the answer to this mystery would shed light on why that assumption turned out to be incorrect. (I guess I'm practicing, I recently took YP facilitator training and one of these days we are going to schedule a training session for the parents in our pack.)
  24. NJCubScouter

    Taking up the challenge

    Comedian Jon Stewart has a line that goes something like "Atheists are teenagers who hate their parents. Wiccans are teenagers who REALLY hate their parents." Funny though it may be, I can say from the perspective of both teenager and parent that there may be a grain of truth to this. Maybe not the "hate" part, but the point is that many things go into creating a "belief" or apparent belief, and rebelliousness can be a major factor. It certainly has been a factor for both of my daughters, for me when I was a teenager (when I announced that I was not only an atheist, but a socialist as well), and apparently to some extent for sctmom's sister as well, though her "rebellion" came as an adult. If there is a lesson in all this, I think it is that some people get way too concerned about this sort of thing. I don't care what other people think about the nature of existence, who's in charge, and the afterlife, if any. I don't want to change what they think, and I don't want them to try to change what I think -- even if they think they are doing good. As far as I'm concerned, they're not.
  25. NJCubScouter

    Happy Thanksgiving to all!

    Yes, Happy Thanksgiving to all! No matter who, or what, you are giving thanks to.