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BPwannabe@137

Homosexuals in Scouting

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Gregtlaw's post brought several points under discussion to a head. First, his ex-wife "outted" him. I would have considered the source: not just hearsay but spiteful hearsay. I had my ex-wife accuse me of criminal activity 17 years after the divorce! Fortunately, the police detective realized the situation just as my jaw hit the floor and my eyes bugged out of my head. She will remain a ward of the state for the next 15 years as a result of her actions that she accused me of doing. I know all about spiteful hearsay.

 

The "we won't ask and please don't tell because we will miss your skills, talents, and time that you have brought to scouting"-policy and excluding avowed homosexuals is one thing. I explained that to a homosexual co-worker when he asked me about homosexuals in scouting when all this brou-ha-ha started several years ago. The finer screen is the first Scout Law. To deny one's known sexual orientation is a violation of trust to all involved if sexual orientation is a question. Scouters are to set the example for the youngsters. It begs the question. He agreed. But my homosexual co-worker asked a fantastic question: "What about open heterosexual behavior at scout functions? You are married and both of you are active in scouting, even if you make no displays of hetersexual affection at scouting events, right? Isn't that displaying open heterosexual behavior? Even if you discuss wives at scouting functions? Isn't that open heterosexual behavior?" Ouch!!! He was spot-on. I told him that the first point of the Scout Oath was "Duty to God and Country". That meant practicing the tenants of my religion and respecting those of others. As a Christian, I answer to a Higher Authority, and the Higher Authority is clear about homosexual behaviorand has created the institution of marrigae for several good reasons. If he had any questions, he needed to consult the writings of the Higher Authority. He said "Touche'. But there is a difference between a homosexual who respects the privacy of others, including boys, and a child molester."

 

He was correct. We do not put the same restrictions on heterosexuals that we put on homosexuals. Child moslestation is about the power the molester feels he has over his victim. He also went on to point out that he would not be interested in a 12- or 13-year old boy for the same reasons that I would not be interested in a 12- or 13-year old girl. And what would the boy scouts do with a scouter found sexually molesting a boy, scout or not? We all know the answer to that question. Any homosexual being more quickly labeled as a child molester may not be the case, but . . . given preceived misconseptions, the race does not go the swift nor the battle to the strong, but that is the way to bet. BSA has sided with the safe bet. With our sons' development on the line for the eleven years of CS and BS programs, we in scouting have chosen to make the programs as safe as possible for them. My co-worker understood completely and his misconceptions eliminated. He said that he was in favor of the program because of the fun he saw scouts and cubs having and th elessons in life presented

 

As a quick aside, his comment about AIDS and the homosexual community made a lot of sense, "Man, the party's over. Everybody is pairing up and no more casual encounters. Getting very regual blood tests is all the rage."

 

I went to his funeral. He wasted away; yep, AIDS. Homosexual or not, he was a great guy.

 

Nevertheless, policy is policy. I favor it. I continue to adhere to it.

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Gentlemen (and Ladies),

I do want to apologize for my brass comments and rude behavior in my previous post. Though I know it is no excuse for my behavior, I suppose the frustration over the situation just continued to build until I had the opportunity to vent it; especially because Scouting was such an influencial part of my life and I desperately wanted it to be a part of my son's as well.

I do realize many members want the policies changed and I appreciate the support from those of you who offered it in response. I am also glad to see that the debate over the issue is still very much alive from the speed of responses that were posted.

I realize I would be "allowed" to volunteer at certain events or for certain committees, but, after the comments made to me, I hope most would understand that it seems too similar to being "allowed to sit at the back of the bus".

Until the policy is changed, I'm afraid I can't, in good conscience allow my son to be part of an organization that discriminates in such a way. I wish the best of luck to those of you who are fighting on the side of the right in this debate. When you win, please let me, my son and my nephews know.

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Trail,

Why would I have a problem with the McCarthy hearings?

 

Well, for one, they did more damage than good. At a time when there really was a concern over spies infiltrating the government, McCarthy's attacks ended up causing more paranoia than good detective work to root out enemies. At one point, he held up a list of over 200 people who he said were Communists working in the State Department. In the end, he produced not a single bit of evidence supporting those claims. He attacked the entertainment industry, destroying the careers of many people who had done no wrong. He attacked Eisenhower, Adlai Stevenson; the list goes on. The hearings were so ineffectual that the Senate ended up censuring McCarthy at the end of 1954 in an effort to rebuild its integrity.

 

Most historians consider the McCarthy era to be a black mark in American history, marked by abuse of power, and conviction by rumor.

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Greg,

If you are using that passage to justify you actions or condemn my comments, then you don't understand the passage. I refer you to Romans 1:18-32. It is more applicable in your situation.

 

Ed Mori

Troop 1

1 Peter 4:10

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Trailpounder,

 

Justifying McCarthy???????

 

NO, NO, NO!!!!

 

Ever see the phrase "the right of the people peaceably to assemble"???? Membership in an organization that seeks to change govt. policies -- Sons of Liberty? Continental Congress? Audobon Society? ACLU? Boy Scouts of America? Greenpeace? PETA? GOP? DNC? Libertarians? -- is not a crime, in and of itself.

 

The McCarthy inspired anti-Communist hysteria is on the same page as WWII Japanese-American internment camps, Nazi Germany's anti-semitism, etc. We should have been (continue to be) confident enough in our democratic processes to use them appropriately and not be scared into giving away rights guaranteed to our citizens. Those rights are supposed to be Creator-given and inalienable. American citizens should never have them infringed upon based on govt induced public fear.

 

jd

jd

 

 

 

 

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"The McCarthy Era has been written into college and high school curriculums and even government history standards as a time of witch-hunts instead of a time of fifth column treason for the same reason. The opening of the Soviet archives and the release of the Venona decrypts have established beyond any reasonable doubt that McCarthys so-called victims with few exceptions (James Wechsler would be one) -- were people who either served the intelligence agencies of the biggest mass murderer(Stalin)in history or supported the despotic empire he built, or were fellow-travelers of the same."

 

There is a slight difference between wanting to change environmental policies and supporting the actively assisting the Soviets, our mortal enemies. They should have been hung.

 

 

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I have to agree that there is something screwy about Greg's story. First, if he was really a scout as a youth, and was planning to put his son into scouting, he expects us to believe that he didn't know scouting had a problem with openly gay people? What planet has he been living on?

 

If he did know, then it seems he was OK with putting his son in an organization with a discriminatory policy, until he was "outed." If that's the case, I don't see why he should be mad at BSA or the CO--his problem is with his ex-wife. What was the CO? A church? As noted previously, a CO is free to restrict membership more than BSA, and isn't required to follow a "don't ask, don't tell" policy. He could probably find another CO that would be "don't ask, don't tell."

 

Maybe this story is real, but it sounds to my ears more like a little dramatic tale designed to make us feel sorry for the son (and the nephews, nice touch) who won't get to be scouts because of the mean old BSA. The ex-wife is used so the protagonist doesn't do anying himself to become "avowed." It sounds like a law school hypothetical, not a real situation.

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I do not know whether gregtlaw is accurately reciting all the facts of his situation or not, but assuming that he is, the BSA's policy does NOT prohibit him from being a leader. He is, by his own statements, NOT an "avowed homosexual." Just because his ex-wife knew of his sexuality (as well she might) and told a Scoutmaster does not make him "avowed." Now, a unit does have the right to pick its own leaders and to exclude anyone for any reason or no reason (with the probable exception of race or ethnicity), so I suppose that greg could be excluded from leadership in THAT unit.

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NJCubScouter writes:

Now, a unit does have the right to pick its own leaders and to exclude anyone for any reason or no reason (with the probable exception of race or ethnicity)

 

What? Any organization that can discriminate on the basis of religion (constitutionally protected) can discriminate on the basis of race/ethnicity (which is largely just statutory protection). Bob Jones University, for example, prohibited interracial dating until 5 years ago.

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Thanks for the resource, Pack, like much of the McCarthy era (and all history, I guess), the information depends on who's telling the story. I've read histories that have him painted as a hero, a villain, a nuerotic drunk, a caring family man. We'll never get at the truth - not surprisingly, it's like trying to understand Nixon.

 

Is there any history of McCarthy that suggests he actually had a shred of evidence for his claims, or anywhere near enough knowledge of specific individuals to (mis)treat American citizens?

 

Trailpounder, interesting op-ed piece - does it have a reliable source? Remember, of course that McCarthy never had access to Venona, so at the very nearest edge of viability, your quote would be arguing that his actions become a question of ends justifying means. In general, Americans are not satisfied with such an explanation when it comes to the abuse of their civil liberties and Constitutionally supported rights.

 

jd

 

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As I understand it (and I was merely catching butterflies as a little boy when the hearings occurred) evidence, if it existed, was less important than using public fear of the red menace to advance his (McCarthy's) political ambitions.

But a better feeling for McCarthy can be achieved by examining his close associates, Roy Cohn and David Schine.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/USAschine.htm

http://www.brainyencyclopedia.com/encyclopedia/r/ro/roy_cohn.html

 

Cohn was the more prominent of the two (Schine was a minor character but he was Cohn's sex partner at the time). Cohn's deceptions were more complex than McCarthy's. Cohn was a homophobic homosexual who was eventually disbarred for unethical and unprofessional conduct. He died of AIDS back in 1986, ten years before Schine died in a plane crash.

 

For a glimpse into Cohn's practice before he was disbarred see:

http://www.carpenoctem.tv/mafia/cohn.html

as well as a photo of him the way I remember him.

 

Edited part: Looking at that photo again, I am reminded of an elementary school saying, "beauty is only skin deep.... but ugly is to the bone." This guy must have inspired the original author of that saying.

 

While we're at it, McCarthy died two years after his censure, of alcoholism.(This message has been edited by packsaddle)

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