Jump to content
vumbi

Transgender policy change

Recommended Posts

Adamcp, what were the ages of the people you worked with?

 

Also, is there a medical diagnosis? I mean, who decides? If it's the parent, as the BSA says, this sounds like medical marijuana in Colorado and that was abused no end. I would think a doctor that really understands this would be able to make a better decision for a kid than scouters or parents.

 

I don't believe there is a blood test or anything like that.  It is just a matter of opinion.

 

I know that there are doctors who believe in this, but I don't think there are any doctors who actually understand this.  It is a very strange thing.

 

This thing is beyond the realm of medical science.  It exists somewhere in the area of religion and spirituality.  I don't think you should consult a doctor or psychologist to get spiritual advise, though many would be happy to give it.

 

I would recommend that people consult their priest or minister.

Edited by David CO

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Adamcp, what were the ages of the people you worked with?

 

Also, is there a medical diagnosis? I mean, who decides? If it's the parent, as the BSA says, this sounds like medical marijuana in Colorado and that was abused no end. I would think a doctor that really understands this would be able to make a better decision for a kid than scouters or parents.

 

Unfortunately having the medical profession make that call means that child will forever be called out on it and be stigmatized for life because of it.  It's one thing to say one is transgender, another to have certified proof of it. 

 

A person can have their name legally changed and then all documents and such have a legal backing to it.  On the other hand one can use any name they wish and even sign legal documents with that self selected name as long as it is not used to intend fraud. and or deception.

 

If Little Sally wants to be in Scouts and the parents mark her as male so she can be in the program without any other purpose other than fraud and deception, that adds a whole new dynamic to the YPT issue and parental abuse when things get sorted out in court when one as SM gets hauled into court for sexual impropriety issues.

 

I don't believe there is a blood test or anything like that.  It is just a matter of opinion.

 

A psychological diagnosis is just as valid in a court of law as a blood test.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

BSA still provides a guide to values:  It's in the scout oath and law.  These are some of our guiding principals.  But if you want to apply these terms to the hot button topics of today's society, that's when you need to use the views of your charter org.  

 

But even then, if you look at your own membership in your unit, you will not find agreement.  If you ask (and I do not suggest you do this) ... if you ask your unit members or their parents their thoughts on this issue, you will find as wide of set of opinions as you can see in this forum.  Same as sitting at Christmas dinner with family.  Most families do not have political agreement.  

 

We have a huge brotherhood that can keep us firmly bound.  

 

No Fred, the voices on this forum are not at all representative of the membership of my CO and scout unit.  Not even close.  We are disgusted by what we see happening in BSA.

Edited by David CO
  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Adamcp, what were the ages of the people you worked with?

 

Also, is there a medical diagnosis? I mean, who decides? If it's the parent, as the BSA says, this sounds like medical marijuana in Colorado and that was abused no end. I would think a doctor that really understands this would be able to make a better decision for a kid than scouters or parents.

 

 

I worked with transgender teens and young adults, some under 18, some older than 18.

 

Younger teens needed parental consent to move forward with transitioning, and the teens I know needed about six months minimum of sessions with a psychologist who also was working with the endocrinologists. They often start to live their desired gender identity during that time, i.e., wearing those clothes, hair style.  I guess shoes are more expensive than a pair of jeans, those often change last! Some folks do take longer to go through those initial steps with the psychologist and the endocrine team. The teen I know who got "top surgery" was doing so well by that point, that he was not seeing me by the time of the surgery. He was just working with the endocrinological team, going to college, part time job.  That was about 18 months or so after the process was started, and by that time the teen was nineteen.

 

Some of the diagnoses and decision making is indeed dicey. To get testosterone, there does need to be a prescription. But there is no medical disease per se. I am not actually sure what they put in the medical chart.

Parents of younger teens do need to consent, but the psychologists and medical doctors also have to give the green light to start and need to monitor after hormones are started.  To get to the point of hormone treatment (or hormone blocking), the process seems to be measured in months (not weeks, and not years).

 

As a psychologist, with these particular teens I am often facilitating social adjustment or helping problem solve situations that arise with family and friends, but there is no psychopathology per se at that time. Like I am saying, these folks come to me significantly depressed and suicidal, and rarely tell me right away about gender identity issues. Whereas other teens often do show progress early, these teens often do not (before they start talking about gender).  However, once they do eventually start talking about transitioning AND get support from family (i.e., it becomes a real possibility), quite a lot of the symptoms drop away pretty immediately. It's been pretty startling actually, even for someone like me who has been around the block a whole bunch of times.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If one's cat decides to leave them a bit of a surprise in their bed in the middle of the night, they can accept that as the new normal and roll over and go back to sleep or they can get up and go sleep on the couch.  Either way, the world as they know it will never be the same.  One can't unring the bell.

 

You've apparently met my cat.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hedgehog I think that's a great explanation of your Venturing crew and experience with TG kids.  It certainly sounds like a crew I want my son (or, if I had a daughter) to be part of.

 

I know there's a lot of issues being raised here, but it seems that the underlying issue for me is that I really don't want the Boy Scouts to become a co-ed organization.   Why?  Well not because I cannot fathom serving the youth (all sexes) of our nation, but rather that I want that place where boys can get together to bond as boys. Honestly, I don't mind throwing a truly transgendered or whatever kid in the mix.  My fear is that this is a step leading to the Cub Scouts and the Boy Scouts becoming co-ed, and that's the issue I have.  BSA has co-ed groups, and I understand they work well.  However, there are girl organizations out there (GSA) to serve those niches too.  Taking way Cubs/Boy Scouts takes away the boy-only option.  I don't think it's wrong to have a boy-only option.  Is that out of line?

 

The YPT issues can be resolved - albeit with a little time and a little money (revamping bathrooms, etc.).

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hedgehog I think that's a great explanation of your Venturing crew and experience with TG kids.  It certainly sounds like a crew I want my son (or, if I had a daughter) to be part of.

 

I know there's a lot of issues being raised here, but it seems that the underlying issue for me is that I really don't want the Boy Scouts to become a co-ed organization.   Why?  Well not because I cannot fathom serving the youth (all sexes) of our nation, but rather that I want that place where boys can get together to bond as boys. Honestly, I don't mind throwing a truly transgendered or whatever kid in the mix.  My fear is that this is a step leading to the Cub Scouts and the Boy Scouts becoming co-ed, and that's the issue I have.  BSA has co-ed groups, and I understand they work well.  However, there are girl organizations out there (GSA) to serve those niches too.  Taking way Cubs/Boy Scouts takes away the boy-only option.  I don't think it's wrong to have a boy-only option.  Is that out of line?

 

The YPT issues can be resolved - albeit with a little time and a little money (revamping bathrooms, etc.).

 

I suspect the long-term goal is to go co-ed. Some of the language we hear coming from National definitely leads me to think that co-ed is not an "if" but more of a "when".

 

Just in this transgender announcement they said, ""This is an area that we will continue to thoughtfully evaluate to bring the benefits of Scouting to the greatest number of youth possible." This has been a common theme for years now, this notion of extending the program to the greatest number of youth. Since the BSA has had severe difficulty even maintaining previous membership numbers, the only logical way I could see then actually growing the program would be to expand to previously prohibited groups of potential members. 

 

And quite smartly of them, if this is indeed the long-term goal, rather than jumping straight to co-ed they ease into it and start it off by allowing gay members, then transgender members. Next step might be something like lowering the age for Venturing or creating a younger branch of Venture so girls can get involved sooner. 

 

Globally, co-ed is the norm in scouting now. I think it's just a matter of time for the American branch of scouting to go that way as well. And personally, I'm all for it. One of the perks of holding out on a co-ed program for so long is that we've had the opportunity to watch it tried around the world and see that it actually works. UK Scouts are seeing a membership boom and girls are a big part of that. They expect continued growth in the coming years. 

 

Meanwhile the BSA can't even stop the bleeding and numbers continue to drop. Things seemed to level off for a while, but ultimately the trend is still downwards. 

 

At some point it may become a "What have we got to lose" scenario. There has to be a number that, once we hit it, National will simply take any steps necessary to save the organization. If adding girls to the mix keeps Scouting alive in the US, you can be sure they'll do it. 

 

Co-ed would also be a distinguishing factor for the BSA in competing with TrailLife. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 Taking way Cubs/Boy Scouts takes away the boy-only option.  I don't think it's wrong to have a boy-only option.  Is that out of line?

 

 

I agree that Boy Scouts should remain boy-only (and have said so in other posts).  Allowing transgendered youths who identify as boys into Boy Scouts doesn't automatically results in Boy Scouts becoming open to any female youth.  Even with the most supportive parents, friends and adults, announcing to the world that you are transgender is a difficult task and one that kids don't take lightly.  As others have pointed out, abuse of the check-the-box-you-identify-with rule can easily be addressed.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree that Boy Scouts should remain boy-only (and have said so in other posts).  Allowing transgendered youths who identify as boys into Boy Scouts doesn't automatically results in Boy Scouts becoming open to any female youth.  Even with the most supportive parents, friends and adults, announcing to the world that you are transgender is a difficult task and one that kids don't take lightly.  As others have pointed out, abuse of the check-the-box-you-identify-with rule can easily be addressed.

 

Until it comes to YPT issues.  Boy Scouts may be male identified, but unlike Venturing (apples) which is co-ed, Boy Scouts (oranges) is not.  There is no requirement for male/female SM/ASM's on an activity, but the can of worms has been opened.  The girl may identify herself as male, but the reality of YPT doesn't change.  That means special considerations, singling her out, imposing different rules for her latrine showering, and tenting issues all run counter to her sensitivities of her situation.  One can run aground in a boy-only organization that has females on-sight and everyone is being politically correct until the lawyers step in and throws a penalty flag.

 

I for one won't ever put myself in that situation.  There's a valid reason why I have survived 45+ years working with youth and I have no interest in being exposed to vagularities that jeopardize that.

 

If the "boys" all want to camp out this weekend and "she" wants to come along because "she" has marked her application contrary to "her" sexuality, one or the other parents will need to, at their own expense, chaperone "her".  They signed the application, they take responsibility.

 

If the parents are "too busy" that weekend to go along, their "son" stays home or the activity is cancelled.

Edited by Stosh
  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

45 years in this program. Trying to make it to 50. "Reitred" a few years ago after 29 years as an Assistant Scoutmaster. I am very glad now for my decision. In this sue happy society it is too easy for people to find a reason to file a lawsuit. Thankfully, I will not have those issues on a campout or other activity. Good luck to all.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We are disgusted by what we see happening in BSA.

 

BSA is not asking your unit to change or for you to change your attitudes.  For years Catholics, Lutherans, Baptists, Mormons, Jews, Buddhists, Hindus and Muslims have co-existed inside BSA.  We differ greatly to the point there are wars in other nations over these topics.  But in this country, we co-exist.  It's the same issue.  Unless you are disgusted with Lutherans and Baptists too, I just don't see the righteousness as appropriate.   .... joking with the Lutheran and Baptist part ... sort of.  ;)

Edited by fred johnson
  • Upvote 3
  • Downvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

BSA is not asking your unit to change or for you to change your attitudes.  

 

This is the part of your position I still don't understand, Fred, so forgive me.

 

Since BSA changed the membership policy they are telling the general public that BSA allows (x) type of person. So this (x) family comes to my unit and signs up. My unit's CO may not recognize the issue (x) person has and it may not be part of their foundational beliefs. (x) family won't understand that the CO has the "right" to turn them down. Heck, my CO might not see they have the "right" to turn them away. We had several COs in the district expel several units because of these membership changes.

 

So although you may not think BSA is asking COs and units to change, they are in fact guilty of -- at very least -- muddying the waters so much that they lay the expectation that units will accept (x) folks because BSA says they don't bar them anymore. No CO or unit in their right mind is going to subject themselves to the liability of turning (x) family away. Many leaders may not want the liability of what *might* happen if (x) person is now part of their troop.

 

BSA may not be asking folks to change their attitudes, but they are not doing anything to allow the COs and units to exercise their "attitudes" without fear of retribution or litigation. That's pretty cowardly in my book on BSA's part.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×