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BSA inclusiveness: how long coming?

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You brought up your examples as reflective of "national trends." Now, when proven wrong (the national trend is going in the opposite direction), you're reduced to saying that the policy reflects the values of the major COs.


If you really want to bring that topic into the debate, let's look at those big COs that everyone cites. Except for the LDS Church, they are on the decline. From 2000 to 2010, the Catholics lost five percent and "mainline Protestant churches" lost 12.8 percent on average. (Full details at http://www.thearda.com/rcms2010/r/u/rcms2010_99_us_adh_2010.asp) A case could be made, just as strong a case as you make, that people are walking away from these faiths in part because their beliefs are antiquated on a variety of issues.

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Inclusiveness is coming not because there will be a great change of moral leadership in Irving, but it will come for the same reason so many businesses have gay friendly policies. i.e. non-discrimination, benefits for same sex partners etc. These businesses are not moral crudaders, they are simply business that want to serve the broadest possible customer base. BSA will allow local option to have their cake and eat it too. They will likely even remove themselves from the policy decision by making local option an option for individual councils to make. My guess would be within 6 years or so.


And as I mentioned in another thread. It will happen with no great fanfare. Councils such as the Northern Star Council will simply adopt their own membership standards. Northern Star has apparently had their own membership standards for the better part of a decade and no one has seen fit to tell them they can't have it. It's still up on their website so we'll see.





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shortride, one problem - your "mainline protestant" numbers include the huge decline in the Episcopal Church and Presbyterian USA church. Take those numbers out, and the amount of deline decreases significantly. Conservative churchs aren't losing members nearly as bad as liberal churches.

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Interesting thread.



Since gay rights advocates have completely failed to change BSA policies through law, through the courts, and through moral argument, make a purely speculative GUESS as to when you will get what you want.


Maybe this will be a new lame stream media method, since nothing else they have tried works.


Pretty pathetic though.

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"BSA created this policy in response to its members. When they review the policy, they poll the members. At least they claim to be polling they members."


I suppose this might all come down to how you interpret the word "Members"?

I know for a fact that no one has ever asked me and I have never spoken to anyone who has been polled or asked.

So my guess is that the rank and file members do not have any input.

The "Members" Asked are the reps of the CO's that sit on the National Council.


From where I sit, I see that the BSA has spent a great deal of money defending itself and the policy it has in place. It seems to not give a monkey's uncle about what the trends might be, is nor worried about losing any income or funding from the corporate world and it very much OK with things the way they are.

I seen yesterday that major league soccer is cutting ties with the BSA.

I'm unsure what this means or if or how it might effect the soccer program that was supposed to invite Hispanic boys into the BSA?


I also tend to think that while people who really care about this are making lots of noise, but there are more members, kids and their parents who don't care one way or the other at this time, but if pushed would come down on the side of the BSA. Thinking that the policy in some way protects their kids.


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Yep; all the blather about how out of step BSA is really is nothing to the majority of the membership in actual units. When push comes to shove, if it is your own kid who "might" be directly exposed to even remotely possible negative examples, the parents will side with the safest idea. In this case, no matter how much we hear about how Gays are not threats, and so on, especially males, the parents in the end will prefer to "not take a chance".


Also, it is really tiresome to continue to hear how we do not allow Gay kids either, when the policy is specifically aimed at leadership. The only time a Gay kid would be asked to leave would be when he becomes either a threat to other scouts, or insists on making it public, which then causes friction and controversy. Anyone in the schools knows how actual adolescent boys react to even the hint of someone being Gay, or being called Gay. We have enough preteen and adolescent angst with which to deal, without having to moderate this on the youth level.


The PC people will "never" accept the fact that the LGBT community "is not mainstream", just because it is cool to be PC and not face reality. That famous "silent majority" is still simmering in the background; and it could at some point reach its breaking point.


Still, National is erring in NOT making local choice the option. As noted, then most of this would simply disappear.


Sometimes I wonder how people can be so blind to the real world, and what goes on around them. Surely what I see in the schools regularly is common, maybe even more so in less liberal states, since I am in So Cal. Or, maybe I am simply imagining it all. JMO

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"Conservative churchs aren't losing members nearly as bad as liberal churches."


I never said they were. Is the only evidence you have to support your assertion that "national trends" support the ban on gays? That the anti-gay groups are losing members, but hey, not as many as the place on the next block, so people support us?


Gallup reported recently that 32 percent of Americans are nonreligious. That's pretty staggering when you consider the 2000-2010 stats showing a decline in almost every denomination.


While religious affiliation certainly isn't a predictor of views on civil rights issues, the numbers certainly don't look good those who cite Biblical truths and principles as their evidence for a ban on gays in Scouting.


Seems like none of the trends are in your favor except for the rise in Mormonism. And frankly, I'm kind of skeptical about how they count their membership.


# # #


"The only time a Gay kid would be asked to leave would be when he becomes either a threat to other scouts, or insists on making it public, which then causes friction and controversy."


The whole "we're not against gays, just people who are openly gay" line is just so much garbage.


Our current Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy is a complete and utter farce. We see posts on here all the time from heterosexual leaders saying "I don't make my sexuality public, why should the gays?" Well, let's consider the subtle ways you do make your sexuality public:


- You wear a wedding ring.

- Your spouse drives a vehicle to a camping trip.

- You talk about how your spouse is going to have a lot of dirty clothes to wash after this camping trip / or any other casual conversation.

- You chat around the campfire about how your wife did [insert funny joke, comment, etc.] last week.

- Your spouse is a member of the BSA and serves on a committee.

- You have children in the unit and mention their other parent in earshot conversation of other boys.


Do any of those things - which we all routinely do as a matter of course - cause friction and controversy? Of course not. Then why should a gay man or woman's casual discussion of their partner do the same?(This message has been edited by shortridge)

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So Shortridge; would you prefer to chance another McInerney situation? If the school had responded to the situation by removing the main source(s) of friction, even though it might not seem fair, this would not have happened. Kids do stupid and irrational things; and in today's world, they often seem to think they have a right to over react and injure or kill. That is what I meant when I note "becomes a threat or makes it an issue". The same thing would occur should a scout choose to do other things that cause similar frictions.


The safety, and yes, comfort of the majority is more important in some cases. Most kids in scouts who might be struggling with this would not likely make it public or be in the faces of others, so it would not really be a problem. But no group working with kids should be expected to put up with behavior or language that is disruptive or dangerous from their participants indefinitely. At some point, the hard decisions have to be made; and that likely will be at the expense of the more troubled individual.


Again, I do not understand how so many cannot accept realities that actually happen. We are not psychologists or social workers(not usually anyway); and we should not be expected to deal with over the top, emotionally destructive issues just because the individual is troubled. The majority within the unit, at some point, takes precedence.


This seems like common sense to me; but of course "common sense" is often not PC.

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So gay people are troubled, and the comfort of the majority should come before equality?




Is this about natural law, religious values, safety or fear? I've heard all and more as reasons for this ban. All are odious.

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Yes but there is a moral obligation to not accepting gays in the BSA.


Matthew 18:6 "but whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a great millstone fastened around his neck and to be drowned in the depth of the sea.


You don't have to be religious to understand that if a troubled young scout is struggling with his sexual identity, acceptance of gay role models could tilt him to choose a wrong or destructive direction. Sadly, its politically incorrect to speak of homosexuality as a destructive lifestyle in todays culture, but that doesnt change the moral obligation for those who dont believe its normal.

A person with any doubt that homosexuality is normal should certainly consider the consequenses of being involved with an organization that encourages it as acceptable or normal.




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That's the crux of the matter, Barry. Not all Scouts and Scouters quote Matthew, nor believe that homosexuality is immoral or not normal.


Some of us believe the opposite, that the act of discriminating against people based upon who they love is itself immoral.


Yet your morality and religious doctrine outweighs my morality and religious doctrine.


How is that right?

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Brewmeister says:


Proponents of themes types of changes aren't seeking inclusiveness, they are seeking the destruction of an organization they do not truly value.


Yeah, that must be it. I believe the BSA should allow local option, so I must be "seeking the destruction" of an organization that I "do not truly value."


I value the BSA so little that I have remained on as a committee member even though my son is out of the troop, and I have actually taken on MORE responsibility (as advancement chair) since he aged out. And I have no current plans to leave. I do this service (as do the vast majority of people in this forum, regardless of what they think about any issue) for the sons of many people who can't be bothered to lift a finger to help the troop themselves.


And it makes sense that I would value the BSA so little. After all, my dear departed father only dedicated the last 67 years of his life (since the age of 12) to the BSA, was a Scoutmaster before he had any children, was my Webelos leader (back when they were all men) and my Scoutmaster and was a leader and mentor to hundreds of Scouts and dozens of Eagle Scouts and a high adventure trainer for countless others. It doesn't almost bring a tear to my eye to think of how much he devoted his life to the BSA because he wanted to benefit the community in his "spare time" and how he tried to pass along the same spirit to his sons, and hopefully succeeded in some measure, and I wish he was still around to do it. And how, long after he retired as SM, he was still writing a monthly column about his troop for the local newsletter, literally until he went into the hospital for the final time. (Sorry about all this emotional baggage, but it's all true and maybe it helps make my point about how ridiculous the above statement is.) And then there's my son, who stuck it out when the going got tough, made Eagle and more importantly, learned a lot along the way.


But you're right Brewmeister, the fact that I want the BSA not to force CO's to discriminate against gay people must mean I don't value the organization and want to destroy it.


But enough about me. Here I am in a thread that asks a question, and despite Seattle Pioneer's repeated ridiculing of the question and those who have answered it, I will throw in my answer. Unfortunately my best guess, and I hope I'm wrong, is somewhere between 15 and 25 years. I think this truly is a "generational change" as others have suggested, and the generation that is going to change it is not even close to being in charge yet.


Finally, I note this comment by shortridge:


Some of us believe the opposite, that the act of discriminating against people based upon who they love is itself immoral.


Yet your morality and religious doctrine outweighs my morality and religious doctrine.


How is that right?


I think I have said almost exactly the same thing in this forum in the past. That's the crux of the issue, stated as simply as possible. Was I copying shortridge, or is he copying me? :) It doesn't matter, because I think the more people who come to believe that, the better off the BSA will and the closer this necessary change will be to happening.

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"Yet your morality and religious doctrine outweighs my morality and religious doctrine.


How is that right?"


Easy, First Amendment, the right to associate. BSA sets the standards. The standards are set, but some of you don't want to accept them.


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Shortridge; nowhere did I say that Gays or homosexuals are troubled. I said that some are, usually the most expressive ones that cannot keep from being in others' faces, and causing other's to react. And yes, the comfort of the majority sometimes takes precedence; and that has nothing to do with equality.


But this also would be the case with an animal abuser, or a scout on drugs, or an arsonist, or any number of other possibly troubled youth that could be a part of the group. They have no more rights than the others to "act out" and cause friction.



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