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CricketEagle

Path To Save Bsa?

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This came across my facebook feed today.  It's not just me, saying LDS parents want to ditch the scouting program.  http://utahpolicy.com/index.php/features/today-at-utah-policy/6694-poll-majority-of-utah-mormons-want-lds-church-to-leave-the-boy-scouts

 

My question is: If we ditch bsa on account of the flaky way it's being implemented at the local level, will anything change if the church comes up with some other program?  It will be the same leaders!  

 

The LDS church embraced boy scouts shortly after it came to America- way back in the early 1900s.  I understand things were less regulated back then.  It was a different time.  The ideals of boy scouts do match up with what we want for our young men.  I think problems come with boys and leaders being expected to join, rather than volunteering/joining of their own desire.

I don't believe that poll addresses the reason why.  I would be willing to bet most feel this way because of this recent vote, not because they feel scouting is forced on them.   There maybe a few that feel this way or think that it  should be the same as the young women's program, but I have only seen that brought up on feminist websites.   I personally enjoyed scouts and felt it was a good program.  Maybe someone will do a follow up poll asking why people feel the way they do. 

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It was even more interesting reading the comments.  Folks pointed out that the article doesn't explore the reasons people want to leave, nor does it make any comparisons (likely because no one thought to do a poll beforehand) pre-and post announcement. 

 

A number of folks mentioned that the BSA isn't getting with the times fast enough (for instance, why are we still using "blue cards" and not an app for a smart phone to track merit badge requirements?  Great question.)  A few mentioned just how expensive Scouting is and some complained about the inequity between the boys youth programs and the girls youth programs.

 

A number of folks mentioned that they would prefer a Mormon only youth group for boys so that more emphasis can be placed on church doctrine.  One person said they didn't like the BSA because it seems so "cultish" (and my irony meter jumped into the red zone when I read that).  There really weren't all that many commenters complaining that the BSA was allowing gay youth or gay adult leaders.  Hmmmmmmm.

 

A couple of other things about the article I noticed - it seems to backtrack a bit on the claim that leadership is upset that the decision wasn't postponed while they were on vacation - it doesn't directly mention that but points out that the leadership traditionally takes August off (and the decision was made in July) and it also points out that the current head of the church has been a strong supporter of the BSA and is a Silver Beaver hinting that perhaps the decision by the BSA wasn't as rash or unexpected as some spokesperson for the church made it out to be.

 

What was really interesting, though, and might be missed if you didn't get farther down in to the article is that the polling firm also polled non-Mormons on the question.  Catholics apparently were fairly closely split but the majority think the Mormons should stay in the BSA - it's the Protestant result that really got my attention - it wasn't even close - according to the poll, 49% of Protestants think the Mormons should leave the BSA, only 28% think they should stay - and I'd really be interested in knowing why Protestants think that and though I have no data to back it up, I suspect a lot of it might still be lingering protestant bigotry against a church they feel is a cult.

Edited by CalicoPenn

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It was a poll of 500 people. This means it was a cheap, bare bones attempt to take a pulse. No methodology published that I saw which means it could be as scientific as this forum. :)

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It was a poll of 500 people. This means it was a cheap, bare bones attempt to take a pulse. No methodology published that I saw which means it could be as scientific as this forum. :)

oops, meant to respond to CalicoPenn.  Sorry for the mistake.

 

I don't think you can make any judgements based on the comments.  I live in Utah and understand the culture very well.  The reason for most people wanting to leave BSA is the vote on gay leadership.  There may be other minor reasons, but that is what made people want out.  I bet if you could find a poll asking the same question from several years ago the results would be the exact opposite.  I wish I could find one.

 

If you want to read comments that apply read these on the announcement.

http://www.deseretnews.com/user/comments/765678271/LDS-Church-statement-responding-to-Boy-Scouts-of-America-policy-change.html

 

Finally the comments by the church are approved by the leaders of the church including Thomas Monson.  Yes he has a strong history with scouts.  What this should tell you is that the lds church is really serious about this and not just blowing smoke.​

​

Edited by jamskinner

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@@jamskinner

 

First of all, welcome to the forum!  I believe you are correct in that the LDS would be less likely to be sued than if they did not stay with the BSA.  No court is going to take on an issue that is exclusively church related.  I have never heard of any church member suing their church because they were upset with their leadership..  However, once connected to the BSA, it opens up the possibility and in this issue, even quite probably.  If the LDS leadership can set up who does and who doesn't lead their units it's nobody's business but their own.  If they are BSA units with certain policies it opens up LDS to a lawsuit.

 

I've been quite surprised the LDS has tolerated the BSA as long as it has.

 

Thanks for the warm welcome.

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I was out of the state last week and talking to a co-worker that is LDS based in Utah.  I knew he did scouting so I asked him his opinion, it was interesting.  He said his only problem is now that it is legal to be a gay leader kids going to camp might be around gay people.  I mentioned that there are a lot of parents and other non-leaders at council events so that has always been the case.  I am pretty sure I saw him turned another shade of white after I said this.  That was an interested conversation.

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I mentioned that there are a lot of parents and other non-leaders at council events so that has always been the case.  I am pretty sure I saw him turned another shade of white after I said this.

Almost fell off my chair at "another shade of white."

 

It has always been "legal" to be a gay leader. It just hasn't been "legal" to be an openly gay leader. (Well, until about 20-25 years ago it was "avowed or known", whatever that means, then it changed to just "avowed".) So this person's kids may have been around non-openly gay leaders, or as you say, gay (openly or not) parents, non-leaders, other guests, etc. Not to mention, since 2013, openly gay Scouts. At least in theory. I still don't know of any openly gay (current) Scouts. And none of our adult leaders has "come out" in the past couple of weeks. I am not expecting that any will.

 

It also should be remembered that Scouting is just part of the rest of the world. My children had two openly gay teachers while in high school. They also had dozens and dozens of apparently straight teachers and professors during their school years. The latter 98 percent seem to have been more persuasive role models for my children.

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I was out of the state last week and talking to a co-worker that is LDS based in Utah.  I knew he did scouting so I asked him his opinion, it was interesting.  He said his only problem is now that it is legal to be a gay leader kids going to camp might be around gay people.  I mentioned that there are a lot of parents and other non-leaders at council events so that has always been the case.  I am pretty sure I saw him turned another shade of white after I said this.  That was an interested conversation.

 

Most of the kids also attend public school, too.  The kids see all kinds of things there.  

 

I've heard and read complaints from lds about lds scouting for years before now.  There are even blog posts about it.  Many lds wanted out of scouting before this ruling.  

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Almost fell off my chair at "another shade of white."It has always been "legal" to be a gay leader. It just hasn't been "legal" to be an openly gay leader. (Well, until about 20-25 years ago it was "avowed or known", whatever that means, then it changed to just "avowed".) So this person's kids may have been around non-openly gay leaders, or as you say, gay (openly or not) parents, non-leaders, other guests, etc. Not to mention, since 2013, openly gay Scouts. At least in theory. I still don't know of any openly gay (current) Scouts. And none of our adult leaders has "come out" in the past couple of weeks. I am not expecting that any will.It also should be remembered that Scouting is just part of the rest of the world. My children had two openly gay teachers while in high school. They also had dozens and dozens of apparently straight teachers and professors during their school years. The latter 98 percent seem to have been more persuasive role models for my children.

Yes, but these other examples are not private organizations with a policy. There was an expectation by this man. I suspect you bought your house where you did for a reason. If they opened a crack house or XXX store next door I'm sure you'd turn a few shades of white too. ;)

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Yes, but these other examples are not private organizations with a policy. There was an expectation by this man. I suspect you bought your house where you did for a reason. If they opened a crack house or XXX store next door I'm sure you'd turn a few shades of white too. ;)

None of that is really relevant to what I was responding to. Mashmaster said his co-worker was concerned that his son might be "around gay people." My point was that even before the policy change, the man's son could have been "around gay people," both within Scouting (non-openly gay people and openly gay people attending Scouting events as parents or other non-registered persons) and outside Scouting (school, etc.) In other words, this policy change does not change whether the young man may be "around gay people." It also does not change the status regarding this man's son's troop as far as openly gay leaders are concerned. They were banned before the change and, assuming this is an LDS unit, they are banned now.

 

As far as an illegal or undesirable business opening next to my house, that is a pretty poor analogy. A better analogy would be a gay married couple moving in next to my house. I wouldn't care. Mashmaster's co-worker might care, because then his children might be "around gay people," but he would just have to live with it or move elsewhere where there is a guarantee that no gay people will ever move into the neighborhood. I doubt there is such a place unless the co-worker buys his own uninhabited island to move onto.

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Yes, but these other examples are not private organizations with a policy. There was an expectation by this man. I suspect you bought your house where you did for a reason. If they opened a crack house or XXX store next door I'm sure you'd turn a few shades of white too. ;)

Hey, I grew up in LA where we had XXX stores and drug houses.  I don't think crack was around yet.  

 

I don't think the analogy works, it is more like my situation where I am Jewish and have had people stop and stand with their jaws wide open when they find that out.   Even had people question me if I was really Jewish because they found that hard to believe.  Being in the bible belt they think everyone is Baptist or some kind of evangelical Christian.

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None of that is really relevant to what I was responding to. Mashmaster said his co-worker was concerned that his son might be "around gay people." My point was that even before the policy change, the man's son could have been "around gay people," both within Scouting (non-openly gay people and openly gay people attending Scouting events as parents or other non-registered persons) and outside Scouting (school, etc.) In other words, this policy change does not change whether the young man may be "around gay people." It also does not change the status regarding this man's son's troop as far as openly gay leaders are concerned. They were banned before the change and, assuming this is an LDS unit, they are banned now.

 

I interpreted the man's disbelief as rooted in his belief that gays could not possibly be in scouts prior to 2013 and upon the comment suggesting they (gays) might have been there all along, just under the radar, is what amazed him (turned him white). The analogy still stands because his belief of where was and what organization he belonged to (his house) was not where he thought it was (nice neighborhood) and something he did not support and found offensive was actually there.

 

It's not exact, but it's an analogy...they're supposed to be close but not exact. They're illustrative. ;)

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I was out of the state last week and talking to a co-worker that is LDS based in Utah.  I knew he did scouting so I asked him his opinion, it was interesting.  He said his only problem is now that it is legal to be a gay leader kids going to camp might be around gay people.  I mentioned that there are a lot of parents and other non-leaders at council events so that has always been the case.  I am pretty sure I saw him turned another shade of white after I said this.  That was an interested conversation.

 

I'm wondering if he worrys that kids might be around gay people if kids go to the mall, or the theater, or a renaissance faire, or a restaurant, or school??

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Hey, I grew up in LA where we had XXX stores and drug houses.  I don't think crack was around yet.  

 

I don't think the analogy works, it is more like my situation where I am Jewish and have had people stop and stand with their jaws wide open when they find that out.   Even had people question me if I was really Jewish because they found that hard to believe.  Being in the bible belt they think everyone is Baptist or some kind of evangelical Christian.

 

It sounded as if he was just naive enough to think that scouts didn't have gay people in it because of the policy...and that he felt "safe" putting his kids in scouts because he didn't expect them to have contact with gay people as a result of this misplaced belief. I'd be stunned if he actually thought that he could keep his kids away from gay people anywhere else, just that he had an expectation that they would not be in scouts due to the previous policy.

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If one is worried about boogie men, they might want to check out the sex offender database and see how close one of those people live.  I would almost bet they are a lot closer than people would expect.

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