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Lisabob

Just go join Spiral Scouts

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Even the scholarship titled "THE HUBERTUS W.V. WILLEMS SCHOLARSHIP FOR MALE STUDENTS" doesn't list sex as a criterion.

 

Seems the title says it all!

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A lot of worthy organizations "discriminate" in their membership. DAR won't take me, my sons won't be getting scholarships to Yale from UNCF, I can't get into the Army, Hillel won't be giving us any funds, etc etc. That I don't meet their requirements doesn't mean they are wrong -- it just means I don't meet their requirements.

 

The Boys & Girls Club is explicitly inclusive, and serves more youth than the BSA (4.8 mil vs 4.6 mil). Or 4H (also inclusive), with 6.5 mil. Those are viable alternatives, if you don't think SS is. It's not about dodging the question.

 

That homosexuality is immoral is not "I don't like your pants." It's a fundamentally held belief. Those who continue to fight against the BSA and punish it do so not because they have no other recourse -- they do so because they want to bring down those who would stand up to their immorality and perversion.

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Aquila, interesting that both B&G Club and 4H serve more youth than the BSA. I'd venture that maybe the Y does too, though I don't feel like looking them up right now so I'm not 100% sure. At various times in our lives my son and I have participated in all of these and they offer excellent programs. However, the programs these groups run are not typically focused on the same types of outdoor activities as scouts. B&G tends to be more of an after school/latch key program in most places and operates primarily in urban and large suburban settings. 4H offers a huge array of programs, but in some ways they're more like Venturing, typically focused on a specific set of interests surrounding part of the 4H program. For example, there's a 4H dog club, a 4H farm-animals club, a 4H horse club, etc., in our area. I've spent lots of time with 4H as both a youth and as an adult and while I suppose it could be done, I've never heard of a 4H camping/outdoor skills club.

 

My son has spent a week at Y camp for several summers and he loves it. Very different experience from BSA camp though, much more hand-holding from the counselors and few individual responsibilities for the kids. I like many of the Y's values though and I think he gets some rather different things out of going to camp there than he does from his week at scout camp so I'm ok with that. Funny enough, the Y camp he goes to has recently started offering a "wilderness adventure" week where the kids get to (gasp) light their own cooking fires, sleep in tents, and learn to identify plants and animal spoor. This is probably a radically new experience for a lot of youth who are not scouts, but it is executed in a way that is far more adult-controlled than anything you'd ever get in a good boy scout troop.

 

All of these other alternatives are good programs. None of them offer the same type of experience, either in terms of outdoor content or in terms of teaching youth self-sufficiency and working/leading in small groups, that the BSA offers.

 

And in the past, if you look through various threads, when folks have used the "don't agree with BSA policies? then just go join Spiral Scouts!" refrain, it has typically been in an off-the-cuff sort of a way - ie, "we don't want to discuss the nature of your disagreement so just go somewhere else." And in that regard, yes I maintain that it has been a dodge. It is equally a dodge to say "don't like the BSA? Then just go join 4H/the Y/B&G Club/etc." if saying so is meant as a way to avoid discussion. Writing off the disagreements people have does not make them go away.

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Aquila asserts, "That homosexuality is immoral is ... a fundamentally held belief."

 

 

 

Let's complete the historical inventory, shall we?

 

 

 

 

That women are inferior to men is a fundamentally held belief.

 

That black people are lazy is a fundamentally held belief.

 

That native peoples are savages is a fundamentally held belief.

 

That Jews are conspiratorial is a fundamentally held belief.

 

That Muslims are evil is a fundamentally held belief.

 

That Christians are morally superior is a fundamentally held belief.

 

That Irishmen are hot-tempered drunks is a fundamentally held belief.

 

 

 

(yawn) ... Anyone else want to take over?

 

 

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Sex with sheep or little girls being wrong is a widely held belief. Are you saying that those are going to fall by the wayside?

 

For that matter it used to be very common for teenaged girls to marry men in their 30s and 40s. Now that is considered very wrong by most of society.

 

Mabye when half of the world has embraced homosexuality as a lifestyle choice, it will cease to be fundamentally wrong.

 

 

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Good points GW. I agree. Things change. I recently read an article stating a majority of young Christian adults polled now consider homosexuality acceptable, a sharp contrast to their parents. Just like our parents were more inclined to openly discriminate against blacks, our generation's attitudes changed.

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Merlyn says:

 

"None of the scholarships that the NAACP handles seems to have race as a requirement"

 

------------------------

 

Exactly my point - the BSA isn't explicit on its application that they will not accept known or avowed homosexuals as members either, are they?

 

------------------------

 

I believe by the stances and aims/missions of each organization one can imply; the organization for Advancement of Colored People would probably not award a 100% Caucasian student a scholarship. And because of the BSA's policy on avowed homosexuals, it seems they will remove a leader who makes him/herself a known, or is an avowed homosexual.

 

I don't see the difference. In either case, it would still be discrimination. Either way, it is acceptable for both these private organizations to do this, and both processes of discrimination are protected by law.

 

One doesn't need to agree nor support either type of discrimination in my scenario, be it race or sexual preference but again, it is what it is..... plain as day, discrimination.

 

As individuals, we must make a decision as to what organizations we align ourselves with or are members of. To me, it comes down to personal choice. If I don't agree that all Christians are infidels and Israel must be destroyed, I don't affiliate myself with Al-Queda. If I don't agree that all but white people are the scum of the earth, I don't join the Aryan Brotherhood, the ANP or the KKK. If I believe in the right of a woman to abort her fetus, I don't jump into the Right to Life campaign. If I believe homosexuals should be allowed to be youth leaders, I don't go looking to secure, nor keep rechartering my membership in the BSA.

 

I do believe it is as simple as "Like it or Leave it" because we all have a choice in our membership with ANY private organization. I also believe it's counter-productive and hypocritical to be or stay a member of an organization where you don't agree with their policies (MAJOR ones). I find it especially abhorrent for those to keep their membership with an organization, hoping to change its policies by subversion from within.

 

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Aquila wrote: "That homosexuality is immoral is not "I don't like your pants." It's a fundamentally held belief."

 

Do you really believe this?

I'd like to hear on what kind of scientific research this belief is founded upon.

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"hoping to change its policies by subversion from within. "

 

Joni, perhaps what you see as "subversion from within" others see as a form of thorns & roses - honest discussion of what works, what doesn't work, and why, can lead to change.

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GW makes an important concession and I respect him for it. As much as many people would like to believe that human morality is timeless and inflexible, the fact of the matter is that definitions of morality are constantly shifting, evolving to reflect changes in culture.

 

150 years ago in the southern US, it was perfectly acceptable to enslave other human beings simply because their skin was darker. 500 years ago in Spain it was perfectly acceptable to burn people alive simply because they had a different religion. Today, both of those actions are crimes worldwide.

 

What will morality be like in the 22nd century? It will certainly be different than today. Perhaps it will be immoral to eat meat. Perhaps it will be a crime to combust petroleum. Perhaps plural marriages will be commonly accepted. No one knows. However, as Gern points out, today the tide has already turned in the US with respect to views towards homosexuality. What our parents generation thought of as sinful or perverted our childrens genertion is accepting as being merely different.

 

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Lisa, I would completely agree with you if these discussions were taking place at a level within the BSA, where policy is set (I assume that would be National), and not at our level with ordinary average, (and for the most part anonymous) Scouter-folk here at Scouter.com.

 

Something tells me what's posted on these message boards likely doesn't effect a thing at National's policy-making level. I could be wrong.... but that's the feeling I get.

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>>However, as Gern points out, today the tide has already turned in the US with respect to views towards homosexuality. What our parents generation thought of as sinful or perverted our childrens genertion is accepting as being merely different.

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"I'd like to hear on what kind of scientific research this belief is founded upon."

 

Hmmm . . . morals and science. Sounds a lot like intelligent design.

 

I think that it was Colin Powell who said, "men don't like to shower with men who like to shower with men." Even if he didn't say that, it is still profound.

 

 

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joni4TA writes:

"None of the scholarships that the NAACP handles seems to have race as a requirement"

 

------------------------

 

Exactly my point - the BSA isn't explicit on its application that they will not accept known or avowed homosexuals as members either, are they?

 

------------------------

 

I believe by the stances and aims/missions of each organization one can imply; the organization for Advancement of Colored People would probably not award a 100% Caucasian student a scholarship.

 

Well, you'd be wrong. Also, do you realize it was created mostly by white lawyers, and didn't have a black leader until years later?

 

And because of the BSA's policy on avowed homosexuals, it seems they will remove a leader who makes him/herself a known, or is an avowed homosexual.

 

But they don't state this. How is J. Random Applicant supposed to know? And why doesn't the BSA simply state their requirements plainly? What's the point of that?

 

I find it especially abhorrent for those to keep their membership with an organization, hoping to change its policies by subversion from within.

 

From the point of view of many, this has already happened - the subversion was the mormon and catholic influence at high levels to exclude gays.

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