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So a Scout Tells you he is gay????

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Nice to see someone from across the pond inject a little perspective into the situation...


So what. WHY is he telling you? Is he doing it to test the system... then explain what is likely to happen if he does, he will more than likely eventually bump into someone (unit, district, council, national) that will show him the door because of it. This may or may not happen before he earns Eagle - assuming he is trying to do so. Does he want to assume the risk?


Is he asking for help to com out to his parents? Well, then either offer that help or refer the lad to someone better prepared for that task.


Is he letting you know him and Jimmy from his patrol are dating? Well, thats a whole new can of worms then, isn't it?


Its kind of like me stating, "I'm married and I kissed a girl." OK, so what? Am I cheating on my wife, or did I give my neice a peck on the cheek when I dropped her off at my sister's house?


Life is about CONTEXT, but too many adults are either too stupid or too stubborn to figure this out. Its like a republican or democrat latching onto something a candidate says, one or two sentences and slamming them over and over about how right or wrong the statement is WITHOUT any context as to WHAT the question was, WHO asked it, and WHY the candidate was answering it in the fashion they did. Sometimes we adults really do NOT deserve to be in charge of youth.


If you can't come up with an even keel, non-judgemental answer to this one, regardless of your personal belief system, then you REALLY need re-evaluate WHY you are leading youth in the first place!



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If the Scout tells me in strictest confidence that he is gay, I will keep that confidence. If the Scout decides to blab it to the world, he will likely be removed from the program. If revoked from membership, that Scout, following the current trends,will likely blab it to the media. Merlyn or someone will eventually find a link to an article about the event, post it here, and start yet another thread in the huge library of threads on this topic.

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So now you have two gay scouts in your unit.


who are they going to tent with????


This is not much different than a crew and having a girl and guy sharing a tent.....The only difference it the likelyhood of them getting pregnant is zero.



Trev...you did the right thing by the boy.......But when a SM does the right thing by the organization he gets thrown under the bus.......


6 months ago I would have done what you did....Now I am not so sure.


An 11 year old....I would probably ignore it and have a chat with his mom.

A 17 year old....I would keep an eye on it.....If I hear anything from other parents or scouts about it he will be removed. I am uncomfortable with him sharing a tent with another scout......much in the same way I am uncomfortable with my daughter sharing a tent with a scout who is not her brother.

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You need to separate the avowed orientation from behavior. This is a YOUTH organization and sexual behavior has no part in it.


A boy tells me he is a thief. Well, have you stolen anything? No, but I know that I am and really feel that I want to steal something. You counsel him to avoid his immoral urges.


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If your going down that route then try this set of factsheets and information


"Promoting good sexual health"



anyway back to reality, looking in from the outside - and the other side of the pond it can often seem that the gay issue is a major thing in the USA/BSA in the UK the gay/lesbain population is very much a minority - in the sense that theres not that many of them, do i know of any gay/lesbain Scouters? and the answer to that is a no, do i know of any? well theres so and so, who was at a camp 6 years ago who could have been but probably wasnt, and thats about as far as it goes.


so from my view point there is either a large amount of lesbian/gay people knocking on the door of the BSA, or its being blown out of all proportion by the media and news who feed of negative stories, and hype them up endlessly.


As for the UK side of things, im not sure if there was a specific ban on gay/lesbains in scouting in the UK in the past, all i know is that an equal opportunities policy was just quietly updated/introduced that explictly banned discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation, from where i am the equal opps policy had no effect what so ever, this is the equal opportunities policy - ok lets just concentrate on Scouting.



The problem that i see for the BSA adopting a simalar problem is that they appear to have backed themselves into a corner, and a quiet adoption of a simalar policy with no or very little fuss/publicity from the media wouldnt be that easy, the only way that i could see it working for the BSA is to drop it as a mandatory national requirement, and allowing charter organisations to opt out should they chose to do so.

The Charter organisation set up is a fundamental difference between UK Scout Asssociation Scouting and USA BSA Scouting, charter orgs. do not exist in the UK, and sponsored Scout troops are not the normal set up.


So to ask the question "So a Scout Tells you he is gay????" i would leave it at that and say its no problem ( even if it was/could be) as long as they didnt ake an issue of it - i dont walk rould shouting im straight/hetro, and niether would i expect any one to walk round shouting that they are gay/homosexual.


Dont forget that aot of young people are still trying to find themselves in this big nasty old world, and as part of the growing up process confusion is common, as Scout leaders/scout masters we should be helping young people to fully develop their physical, intellectual, spiritual and social well being, in order that they can become better citizens and individuals, and in turn make a positive impact upon their comunites, countries, and maybe the world as a whole.

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I'm with Trevorum on this. What he describes hasn't happened to me but I'd respond the way he did. OTOH, I think that I do know of gay or atheist scouts AND scouters. They signed the application. BSA accepted them. End of story. Their sexual preferences and belief systems are none of my business so I keep my nose out of it. It isn't my duty to be one of the BSA membership police.(This message has been edited by packsaddle)

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packsaddle you said

"It isn't my duty to be one of the BSA membership police."


Then who's job is it? If a female age 13 tried to join, would you allow that because your not the membership police?


What about a registered sex offender? A convicted Felon?


The question being which rules do we enforce, only those we happen to like.

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And here my worst worry was some venturer telling my she's pregnant, due date 9 months post our last camp-out!


It's clear to my youth I'm stridently pro-virginity. And, since sexual preference does not seem to be as "locked in" as some would propose, I'd ask the boy if he's able to hold that thought until he's 18 and his other scouts have matured enough to join in that conversation.


The closer to adulthood, the more direct I would be about BSA policy and encourage the boy to reconcile his stance with that. Hopefully that won't mean leaving the organization, but it may.

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If the application passes the background check, and if BSA signs off, then that's that.

If I detect criminal activity by either adult or boy, I act immediately.


But your examples are ludicrous. At present, a 13-year-old female can't be a youth member of a troop (but I'd welcome a change in that policy). She's not going to be able to hide her gender from the CO. A female CAN be an adult leader and I have no problem with that.


The other two examples (registered sex offender and convicted felon) are improper comparisons to someone's sexual orientation or religious beliefs. Do you really think these things are equivalent?

If the application process proceeds correctly, I won't have to lift a finger. The CO or BSA will discover those facts during the background check and the applications denied or revoked. Besides, what makes you think I will know these facts in the first place? Do you really think some criminal is going to confide to me, when I give them an application, that they are a sex offender or a convicted felon? Earth to nldscout...earth to nldscout....

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qwazse, or anyone really, if BSA practices DADT with respect to these things, why do so many of us feel the need to take it beyond that? There is NOTHING in the training that states that we must detect gays or atheists and 'turn them in' for violations of membership policies. If DADT is good enough for BSA, it seems like it ought to be sufficient for the rest of us.


Look, I sympathize with the view that DADT inherently encourages deception. But BSA is the one that is promoting that deception. As Pint noted, BSA has painted itself into a corner.

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They are perfectly legitamate examples to use. They do not meet membership rules. So if they don't meet membership rules you would exclude them, correct?


So you have a person thats gay, or one tha says I am an athiest, so they don't meet membership rules. So your just going to ignore the rule?


Once you deceide to ignore that rule, where do you stop? Is then 20 Merit badges enough for eagle, or 12 nights of camping for OA?


How about we stop worrying about the speed limit, drive what you think the speed is.


I see people everyweek in court that think the same thing, why that rule is not right, so I will just ignore it. Thats why we don't need to start down this slippery slope.

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