Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
CubsRgr8

Undue Influence?

Recommended Posts

OGE,

 

That's pretty much it in a nut shell. The player and the scouter have a right to cheer for whichever team they want. The BSA and the Bears have the right to choose their players.

 

The only difference is that the BSA's right is protected by the constitution just as the players right is.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If I show up at a public demonstration to support gay rights in my BSA uniform or saying I am representing BSA, I am wrong. If I show up at a troop meeting with a t-shirt that says "I am gay and proud of it." I am wrong, I'm outwardly trying to provoke people or to influence the youth. If I'm lobbying for organizations to pull their support of BSA because of this issue while at the same time being an active BSA member, I'm wrong.

 

If you ask me my thoughts on this issue, I have the right and the duty to say what I believe in. If I say I agree or I keep silent, I have lied. I also have not been true to myself and my beliefs.

 

"If you voice it in public and the BSA removes you, I fully support their right to do so."

This is against practically everything that BSA teaches the youth it serves. To voice my opinion in public is my RIGHT and DUTY, I repeat. I cannot say I am speaking for BSA. I do not have that authority.

 

According to your rules, if I wear a shirt with the competitor's name to work, I can be fired for that. What if my spouse works for the competitor? I've heard of people being "asked" not to wear the shirt from the competitor, but not fire over it. Maybe OGE is Bret Favre's brother. He can't support his brother? He can be fired for that.

 

If National feels the need to release someone like me from stating what I believe in, when asked, then maybe I don't want to be part of the organization. I hope that anyone removed because of voicing their opinion against ANY issue of BSA is VERY LOUD about letting the world know. I'm female, BSA says I can be a Scoutmaster. Some regular posters on this board have said they don't think women should be Scoutmasters. That is in direct opposition of what National says. Do I think they should be kicked out? No way. I don't agree with them, but I see no reason to remove them. Even if they tell the boys in the troop they don't like seeing a woman in BSA.

 

I don't post on here by my real name, but I bet anyone who knows me can read this and my profile and recognize me. How many other troops in this district are dealing with the exact same problems and had the same experiences on campouts at the same time I have? Hmmm...not many. So, if any feels I need to be removed from BSA....go ahead. I will always know I stood by MY principles and what is right for my family. The same as most everyone else on this board.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ed, you stated: "If I choose to exercise my 1st Amendment right of free speech about a BSA policy I don't agree with in public, the BSA can't - I repeat - can't remove me from it's membership. They can't exercise their 1st Amendment to exclude certain lifestyles then punish me for exercising my 1st Amendment rights."

This is an incorrect interpretation of the Bill of Rights. It is common for people to claim 1st Amendment protection in private situations, but it doesn't hold up. The Bill of Rights protects us from government interference only. BSA uses the right of association, which by the way is not specifically set forth in the Bill of Rights, to protect it from government regulation on membership. It cannot use the same right of association to demand that the United Way, a private organization, fund it regardless of its membership choices. The same with free speech, I can stand on public property in front of the White House and yell "the President is a fool, jerk, (add your favorite adjective here)" and have the right to do so. If I do the same in a private workplace referring to the company president, I may soon have a new boss somewhere else.

 

Sctmom, You commented: "According to your rules, if I wear a shirt with the competitor's name to work, I can be fired for that. What if my spouse works for the competitor? I've heard of people being "asked" not to wear the shirt from the competitor, but not fire over it." Assuming no union protection and an employment at will state, yes, the employee can be fired. If there is protection for the employee, it is not the Bill of Rights.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To All,

 

Fantastic conversations. I live on the east coast, but I'm a major Packers fan (I really don't know how that happened). Mr. White; as my comments about written policies not being forwarded to units concerning gay Scout leaders, I realize that it is policy. But the action happens at the unit level, and without documentation, it's just another "unwritten" policy. As far as "unit options," no, it will never happen on an official basis (much less receiving anything in writing), however, it has been in existence for at least the 35 years that I've been involved. You can say it's not there, but it is, and it works.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Regarding unit option ---

I have heard on another bulletin board of an area that was having problems with this "new policy". I don't remember what part of the country the person is in. They said that many extended family members were registered volunteers with BSA. When the Dale decision came down in 2000, the "avowed" gays left. This was more on their part of wanting to comply than anyone telling them to leave. People in the unit and chartering org knew of their lifes and had never questioned it. It was just "oh, there is Billy's uncle and his friend". Now some of the units are suffering for lack of volunteers.

 

A while back someone asked how many had known of an avowed gay applying for leadership, and I don't think anyone said they had run into this.

As Sst3rd says units will always have "unofficial" options. This applies to a lot of things.

 

Also, as a parent I have options. If I don't like the way someone looks or acts, I don't send my child off with them. It's not just about severe behavior --- sex, alcohol, drugs. Maybe the person just gives me the creeps, maybe I don't like the type of job he has, or the way he talks to people, or the way he combs his hair.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bob,

You are correct in a sense. I have the right to say anything about anything in a public forum.

 

Ed Mori

Scoutmaster

Troop 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A gay Scout leader is doing essentially the same thing as a gay service member -- living a lie. One of the three aims is character development; this poses an inherent conflict, in my view, among those who don't support BSA's policy. Frankly, I can't imagine how I would reconcile my membership if I had such a fundamental disagreement with BSA over a right/wrong topic that's important enough to them that they took it to the Supreme Court. Moreover, I'm not sure how I'd explain such a position to my son if he asked me. Before any of you gang up on me, I'm not suggesting anybody turn in their membership cards if they're on the other side of this issue. I'm just making an observation that life's a lot easier when a person and the movement he/she serves agree on character issues.

 

I'm a big fan of William J. Bennett. My kids' library includes "The Book of Virtues" and "The Book of Heroes", and my library includes "The Educated Child" and "The Death of Outrage" -- all of which I recommend highly.

 

BTW, someone in an earlier post used shouting in front of the White House "the President is a jerk" is an example of protected free speech rights they're entitled to exercise. They may be entitled, but I'm not. If I did that, I'd be committing a punishable offense I could be imprisoned for -- I bought into that when I took the oath of commissioning...just as we bought into BSA policies when we signed the application. If I want to use insulting language toward my commander-in-chief (which I would never think of doing), I must first resign my commission. I realize the BSA isn't the military, but in terms of loyalty, character, and right/wrong, I think there are parallels that apply. Don't get me wrong, I don't agree with every military policy, but it's not a Luby's Cafeteria where I can pick what I want -- it's Mom's kitchen, where I eat everything on the plate, including the vegetables. There are appropriate ways you can make your voice heard on a policy you feel strongly about, but don't take it personally if headquarters doesn't agree with you...which is if I may paraphrase, the same point Bob White is making.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think NJ has mentioned this before in some way. There are some things we should do because it is the right thing to do, not because it is the legal thing to do.

 

I don't take it personally that National or many of you don't agree with me. I also stand by the rights of the men (some of this board) who have said that women should not be SM's or ASM's. They have agreed to also follow BSA policy even though this do not agree with that one. I don't think that makes them a liar or any less dedicated to the Scouting movement. Most have expressed that it is not they think women are lower class just that the don't feel it is the best thing.

 

If you feel that banning gay leaders is the right thing, then good for you. If you are only going along with it because some men at the National level say so, then not so great. Not everything in this world is black and white. I have found very few things that are all or nothing situation. Why has scouting changed over the last 100 years? Because people have stood up and questioned what was being done. I'm sure some of the things questioned were never changed. You don't have to agree with me about my view of gays, but please don't condemn me for being part of BSA and not agreeing with this one policy. The great parts of BSA outweigh this for me. For some, it is not worth staying for. I thought long and hard about this.

 

By the way, the Dale case had not gone to the Supreme Court when I signed my son up. True, I have the option to walk out at any time and to not sign back up each year. I can understand you wanting to quit if the policy changes, try to understand why I stay even with the current policy.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Please re-read my post; I made it a point to say I do not think leaders should turn in their membership cards if they're on the other side of this issue -- I only asserted that it's easier to reconcile your membership in an organization when you're in agreement with its policies. An observation, not an indictment.

 

The irony here is that many of us embrace Scouting in large part because the values of Scouting harken back to a time when morals weren't relative and character wasn't so hard to find. Yet, when it comes to this issue, some are perfectly okay with moral relativism and all the baggage that comes with it.

 

When someone justifies something because it's "the right thing to do", we just started careening down a slippery slope. Here's why: it's the right thing to do as defined by...you, but not necessarily by me, or him, or her, or somebody else. Moral relativism knocking at the door. NAMBLA believes that men and boys being intimate with each other is also the "right thing to do". Also, some incredibly heinous things have been done by people who firmly believed it was the right thing to do at the time, only to regret it later after it couldn't be undone. When I lived in the Netherlands, I met scores of Dutch people who profoundly regretted supporting the government permissiveness that has resulted in part in their country being the kiddie porn capital of the world. An absolute shame in an otherwise charming place to live.

 

I'm not trying to link the two, and there's already another thread on this, but if anything good can come out of the current scandal in the Catholic Church, it could be that it opens our eyes again to the fact that there are creepy people out there, and not all behavior is okay.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

KoreaScouter says:

 

I only asserted that it's easier to reconcile your membership in an organization when you're in agreement with its policies.

 

As someone who is not in agreement with one of the BSA's current policies, I would agree with that statement. It would be easier if that policy did not exist. However, life isn't always easy. For me, the reasons for me to be involved outweigh the reasons for me not to be involved. What makes it easier for me to be involved is the knowledge that this policy is not in keeping with the true principles of Scouting and that eventually it could be changed.

 

The irony here is that many of us embrace Scouting in large part because the values of Scouting harken back to a time when morals weren't relative and character wasn't so hard to find. Yet, when it comes to this issue, some are perfectly okay with moral relativism and all the baggage that comes with it.

 

Well, here we go again with the "moral relativism" routine. I have dealt with this in the past. For all the times I have read this phrase, I still don't know exactly what values the people who use it think are lacking in those who are considered "moral relativists." "Moral absolutism" basically seems to mean, "this is what I believe and anybody who doesn't believe all of it is a moral relativist." One problem with this attitude is that it ignores the fact that no matter how many things you believe are "immoral," there are others somewhere in the world who have a longer list and who believe that you are wallowing in sin. Ask not for whom the pointy finger of moral condemnation tolls...

 

Having said that, it is true that Scouting harkens back to an earlier time, though frankly those early times weren't always as "moral" as we would like to think. I don't consider racial segregation, in which the BSA did participate in an earlier time, to be particularly moral. As far as sexual morality, I don't think it's as much a matter of people acting differently in the olden days, as people being more honest about it now.

 

One good thing about being a moral relativist, I guess, is that you can accept the historical fact that society's understanding of what is right and wrong can change and improve. It happened with slavery, it happened with with racial and gender discrimination, it happened with treatment of the mentally ill, and it is happening now with homosexuality.

 

When someone justifies something because it's "the right thing to do", we just started careening down a slippery slope.

 

That's interesting, I thought that when something is "the right thing to do," that is a description of what is moral. Again, I am left with the impression that you have been appointed the sole arbiter of what is right and wrong, and yet I read the newspaper every day and was not aware of the appointment.

 

Here's why: it's the right thing to do as defined by...you, but not necessarily by me, or him, or her, or somebody else. Moral relativism knocking at the door.

 

Which is why morality, or at least enforceable morality, is defined by a consensus (not necessarily a majority) of society. And as for homosexuality being immoral, I don't think that consensus exists anymore. According to the legislature of my state, homosexuality is not illegal, but discrimination in employment or public accommodations based on sexual orientation is illegal. That tells me where the morality of my part of society stands.

 

I won't even comment again on the references to NAMBLA and kiddie porn, both favorite subjects of those who wish to divert attention away from the issue at hand.

 

I'm not trying to link the two, and there's already another thread on this, but if anything good can come out of the current scandal in the Catholic Church, it could be that it opens our eyes again to the fact that there are creepy people out there, and not all behavior is okay.

 

I think we all know there are creepy people out there, and I think we all know that not all behavior is okay. However, we also know that some behavior is okay; the difference is that some people want to limit that category to only behavior that they engage in or want to engage in, while others (including me) are willing to allow that our own behavior is not the exclusive definition of morality.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And yet others don't want to define anything as being immoral. This enables one to promote/defend the behavior of their choosing. "What's good for you may not be good for me." Right?

 

Your reasons for ignoring the questions about NAMBLA and kiddie porn ring hallow. The fact is, you cannot show us the criteria for which you claim something to be immoral or moral.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rooster - he has provided that - basically, it's whatever the "group" decides is moral is moral otherwise it is immoral - do i have that right NJ?

 

It is indeed dificult to define morals in a vacuum without referrencing either society's "accepted" behaviors or religion, which i believe has historically framed any society's "morals".

 

I do believe the morals of America has changed and is even now changing, some would say it's a downhill slide to immorality and "relative moralism" as R7 puts is. Others would say it's changing to be less discriminatory, more accepting, open, etc. It's a question of vantage point for "them" as well as "us".

 

My problem is that while I subscribe to the idea of certain absolute morals, i can't convince you that they are better than yours without a brain transfusion - your morals were shaped by your parents and the society you grew up in, and so were mine.

 

When i was a kid, the N word was regularily used in my family and I thought nothing of it as that's how I was raised. As i grew up and gained experience, i realized what a harmful word it could be even though I may not have INTENDED it to be harmful. Does this mean that using that word however innocently was morally correct because it was accepted in my family and society? I would think that it was as wrong then as it is now, but without subscribing to some form of absolutes, i don't see how you can say that.

 

It's all so confusing sometimes....

 

YIS

Quixote

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Barring some sort of governmental decree, the morals of a society will always be relative, not absolute. Even then, a governmental decree is only as absolute as that government. God is infinite. Without God, we are truly at the mercy of society and vulnerable to the subjective thinking of each new generation.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What we have here is basically a debate over which branch of ethics (as the disciplinary subset of philosophy) should prevail, moral absolutism or moral relativism. Aristotle and philosophers since have pondered this with no solution that all can agree on. Meanwhile, we're getting wrapped around the axle picking each others' words apart.

 

I'd love to stay and chat some more about this, but I gotta do some things to get ready for Wood Badge, and my kids are ready for breakfast.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...