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shortridge

Where does BSA tell us homosexuals are not allowed?

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I'd be happy to be proven wrong. If you can tell me where I can find, in writing, the authorization for units to establish a local option on membership rules, I look forward to it.

 

Again, you're thinkin' of the BSA like it's the government, eh? Like it sets and enforces the law. That's always goin' to lead you astray.

 

Yeh have to think of the BSA like it's a corporation, because that's what it really is. There is no law, there is a product. Mostly, the BSA cares about customers buying the product, and delivering a quality product to 'em. It doesn't particularly care about how da customer chooses to use the product as long as the customer is happy, and as long as da customer doesn't damage the corporation's reputation, brand identity, or risk exposure.

 

Until yeh understand and really internalize that the BSA is a corporation and acts like a corporation, yeh aren't goin' to properly understand its approach to this issue.

 

Beavah

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>>I gotta giggle here. years ago watched an episode of scout park that had a gay scoutmaster who had been in the position for years, boys loved him and the troop ran great. Well he got kicked out for being gay, they bring in a drill instructor kinda guy who was a whole lot less fun and took pictures of the boys less than fully clothed.

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I think everyone is missing the point here....(I do have to admit that I did not read the whole thread, but did peruse all of it and did not see this point). The issue is with OPEN homosexuality. I do not believe that a leader who is homosexual and is discreet about it has any problems. The point is that any discussion on sex in regard to BSA activities is strictly forbidden. If a scoutmaster began talking about affairs he had or had discussions along the line of "You won't believe what great sex I had last night", I can bet you that if the details got back to the district or council executive, the would not be in scouting very long. I don't know of any situation (aside from the parent's booklet in the front) where this type of situation is discussed or tolerated. Are there homosexual leaders currently in the BSA? I'm sure there are...just based on statistics. The difference here is between those who live a certain PRIVATE lifestyle and those who look to cause a disruption.

 

How may scout leaders do any of you think has been to a strip club? I would imagine the answer is more than one. Now, if that leader considered that as a private matter and was discreet about it but was otherwise an excellent leader, should he be dismissed? Now, if that same person was open and non-apologetic about it to the point of being pushy, all while wearing the uniform, should he be dismissed? I would hope so.

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Beavah is correct when he says National is not a governing body but rather more like a sales team selling programs to the CO's who are then free to add their own restrictions as to what type of a unit it will be and what type of leaders and members it will allow. In spite of what Merlyn thinks bsalegal.org is NOT an official BSA website but an independent one, and its interpretations are their own as the fine print at the bottom of the site clearly implies.

 

If the BSA truly wanted to ban all homosexuals from membership then they need to put that restriction clearly worded on all applications and in all their publications. Don't hold your breath waiting for that to happen however since National will continue to pass that hot potato on to the purview of the CO.

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I hear what you are saying evilleramsfan, but I don't think its about sex, its about morality. Parents don't need to hear about the details of the Scoutmaster's private sex life to learn of his/her moral values. They only need to meet the spouse, or umm, friend at the the next COH dinner. I think that is really what the issue is about.

 

Barry

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Perhaps I am not explaining myself clearly. Yes, it is a morality decision, but homosexuality itself is not being put under the magnifying glass as to whether or not it is moral, but the discussion of sex, whether homosexual or heterosexual, that is deemed as immoral. Every case presented on the homosexuality argument was one where the individual was open and overt about their homosexuality. That was the straw that broke the camels back. In the Dale case, for example, had he stayed discreet about his homosexuality, it is very likely he would have remained an Assistant Scoutmaster. Instead, he became the president of an activist homosexuality group and expressed his sexual preference openly. To reframe the question, say that he became the president of a nudist group that was open and publicly told everyone what they did......I am fairly sure he would have been dismissed as a result of that becoming public.

 

The one thing that needs to be passed on to all scouters that many may not have considered is this: How many out there post items on Facebook, Myspace, Youtube, or other public sites? Yes, you may be able call it "Freedom of Expression", but if it is deemed to be contradictory to the policies of the BSA, it could be used as grounds for dismissal from the organization.

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Oh...I have just read the article about the VA mom and it appears to me that this decision was made by the CO. The BSA spokesperson for all practical purposes disavowed that the action was taken by the BSA. I believe them, especially considering the church that was the CO. There were some veiled references that the pastor had issues with her "preference".

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My Point is how do you know for sure????????

 

If someone asked my sexual orientation I would say that is none of your business.

 

If I bring my best male friend to the court of honor or blue and gold banquet does that make me gay??? or if my car is broken down and he gives me a ride home?????

 

Just sayin.

 

I got a big pile of rocks here, but I know better than to start throwing them.

 

 

 

 

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Yes according to the article,

1. BSA spokesperson says "units determine their own membership" (the new local option? Can we get that in writing?)

 

2. The CO pastor Phil Holliday (BTW,he's an Eagle Scout) says they are simply following the rules (and as shortridge asks where are these "rules" stated?)

 

3. The SM had no problem with Ms. Steele's past and continued service as an adult scout leader.

 

4. The local National Capital Area Council missing in action.

 

Doesn't add up.

 

My audited $0.02,

 

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>>My Point is how do you know for sure????????

 

Mmmm, really? I think your point overall is why should people even care at all.

 

Most of us agree that even now there are likely gays mentoring our kids in the BSA. What you really want is general acceptance for them publically role model a gay lifestyle to our sons. I'm not talking about crude behavior that shouldn't be displayed in public, just a quick peck on the cheek from a partner saying good by before leaving on a week long summer camp trip should be acceptable.

 

I don't accept that it nobodies business because its all about sex in the bedroom. Even the homosexual community calls it a lifestyle.

 

Barry

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Eagledad says:

 

What you really want is general acceptance for them publically role model a gay lifestyle to our sons. I'm not talking about crude behavior that shouldn't be displayed in public, just a quick peck on the cheek from a partner saying good by before leaving on a week long summer camp trip should be acceptable.

 

On your first sentence there Barry, I don't know who wants that. I think there should be local option on the subject, but I don't want anyone modelling "a gay lifestyle to our sons." ("Our sons" in the generic sense, my son is almost 20 and seems to be pretty much set into a non-gay "lifestyle," but you know what I mean. But actually that is interesting, my son has an older cousin who is openly gay, and knows other people who are gay, but somehow he turned out straight. Odd, huh?)

 

But of course, the issue in your quote is really how you define "gay lifestyle," and that's what you get to in the second sentence. A quick peck on the cheek, huh? Well, we adults are not supposed to be modelling ANY "sexual" behavior in front of the boys, are we? If a quick peck on the cheek signifies a "gay lifestyle" -- and I am not agreeing that it does -- then maybe nobody should be showing any sign of affection to anybody (same-gender or different-gender) in front of the boys. I wouldn't have any problem with such a rule -- although I have to admit that in the past when my wife would drop me off for a camping trip, she would probably give me "a quick peck on the cheek." If we're going to ban that, fine, let's ban it for everybody. So, no worries about anything being "modeled" for anybody.

 

I would also point out that in many cultures, men giving other men (beyond family members) a quick peck on the cheek as a greeting, is commonplace and has no sexual content or suggestion of homosexuality at all. And I am not just talking about French people. I remember a great-uncle of mine from the "old country" who, when I was 8 or 9 years old, used to try to kiss me goodbye (on the cheek -- and this was in front of my parents so there is no suggestion of "impropriety" on my uncle's part.) This was apparently normal behavior where he came from, and in the all-immigrant neighborhood where he lived in this country. When I shied away, he would call me a "farmer." I never quite figured that out. I am sure it has some cosmic significance. The point is, I don't think the "quick peck on the cheek" is going to win too many people over to your side of the argument.

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One more thing, Barry. The whole point of a local option would be that each CO gets to decide whether an openly gay person could be a leader -- just as the CO's currently get to decide virtually all leadership issues. I'm presuming that your unit has a CO that would decide against it. Let's say hypothetically that my troop's CO (a Protestant church, by the way) would decide otherwise, which I believe would be the case but am not certain. So when it comes time for people to bid their significant others goodbye in the parking lot before a week of camping, you could worry about your parking lot and I could worry about my parking lot. You don't even need to think about who may be giving who a quick peck on the cheek hundreds or thousands of miles away.

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" Most of us agree that even now there are likely gays mentoring our kids in the BSA. What you really want is general acceptance for them publically role model a gay lifestyle to our sons."

 

Really now? I mean, if they are there , and you can't spot them, you don't know who they are, or how long they have be there...then what is the "publically gay lifestyle" they are modeling?

 

 

If they look like everybody else, then they must be acting like everybody else in public. So they are no more modeling anything gay than you or I.

 

And that's not what I got out of Basement's statement anyways.

What I got was this: "If I don't tell you my orientation, I don't drecognize gay behavior to start with....in which caseisplay any orientation, they how do you know or come by the opinion that I would be gay?"

 

Guess what, last night, our DE, our District Boy Scout camp promotions chair and myself ( disrict cubscout promotions chair) all rode together to camp for a council camp promotions meeting.

 

1 1/2 hour ride. We laughed, joked, and had all kinds of fun. Got to the BB&T training center at campm and the DE patted me on the back for something I said was funny.

 

Suppose one of the other DE's saw that. Should they ask if he's gay? What about me? Maybe they should ask about me.

 

What I am saying is based on the original post, somebody went on a witch hunt. As far as how the program was being handles by the mom, how her performance was going, and how the boys did ...GAVE NO EVIDENCE to any modeling of a gay lifestyle. She was not teaching anybody to be gay.

 

Of course, you don't teach gay anyways.

 

Point is, if the guy beside you at a RT is gay and has been ...and you don't know it....what gay behavior is he modeling? Unless it means we couldn't or wouldn't recognize it to begin with.

 

So if that's the case.... what's the uproar about ?

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Beavah writes:

The BSA went to court to defend its right to remove Mr. Dale, who had in a feature article of a major regional newspaper talked about being actively gay, working with young people exploring their sexuality, and being an assistant scoutmaster working with young boys in da context of the same article.

 

Wrong. There was no mention of scouting or the BSA in the newspaper article.

http://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/99-699.ZO.html

 

Stevens' dissent quotes the actual article:

...

BSA has not contended, nor does the record support, that Dale had ever advocated a view on homosexuality to his troop before his membership was revoked. Accordingly, BSAs revocation could only have been based on an assumption that he would do so in the future. But the only information BSA had at the time it revoked Dales membership was a newspaper article describing a seminar at Rutgers University on the topic of homosexual teenagers that Dale attended. The relevant passage reads:

 

James Dale, 19, co-president of the Rutgers University Lesbian Gay Alliance with Sharice Richardson, also 19, said he lived a double life while in high school, pretending to be straight while attending a military academy.

 

He remembers dating girls and even laughing at homophobic jokes while at school, only admitting his homosexuality during his second year at Rutgers.

 

I was looking for a role model, someone who was gay and accepting of me, Dale said, adding he wasnt just seeking sexual experiences, but a community that would take him in and provide him with a support network and friends. App. 517.

 

Nothing in that article, however, even remotely suggests that Dale would advocate any views on homosexuality to his troop. The Scoutmaster Handbook instructs Dale, like all Scoutmasters, that sexual issues are not their proper area, and there is no evidence that Dale had any intention of violating this rule. Indeed, from all accounts Dale was a model Boy Scout and Assistant Scoutmaster up until the day his membership was revoked, and there is no reason to believe that he would suddenly disobey the directives of BSA because of anything he said in the newspaper article.

 

 

 

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But the point is that he was openly vocal about his homosexuality at the time of the article (because of his position in that organization and the subsequent article). The one thing I do not know the answer for is exactly how his removal was conducted. It may be the removal was done at the national level because the article was in a major regional newspaper. I am curious if the first action was by the CO and the BSA supported them. I know that Mr. Dale has said that once he was removed then he became more vocal about it. I could see the scenario play out that the CO removed him, he lashed out, the BSA backed the CO, Dale sued the BSA.... I don't know that this happened, but it would make sense....

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