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CA_Scouter

How do you respond to people who challenge BSA membership policy?

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Our troop is putting on a HikeAThon as a fundraiser for a former SM who was recently diagnosed with leukemia. We will be holding this event on a public trail through our fine city and will be inviting any and everyone we can to attend. I suspect that we may be challenged by some folk about BSA's recent re-statement of their discriminatory membership policy.

 

I'm looking for suggestions for an appropriate response that is professional and informatory, perhaps with references to BSA literature and such.

 

What suggestions to you have?

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My response:

 

As adult volunteers, we are not asked what our opinions are on the BSA membership. This event is in support of Mr. X, who has Leukemia, are you willing to help him or not ?

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Remember, unless absolutely anyone can join an organization, then by your use it is discriminatory. The ABA allows only lawyers to join, the AMA is the same for physicians, and most churches ask one to agree to a set of beliefs. All of those are membership requirements as is that of the BSA. All can be discriminatory if you wish to define it that way. So in discussing the policy, use terms such as membership requirements and point out that most organizations discriminate even if it only that the members have to be children or adults.

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I think you are mixing up two seperate issues here:

 

1) BSA's policies for being a member of BSA

 

2) Getting people to attend a fundraiser.

 

BSA may disqualify you from joinginmg scouting for being gay or athiest, but believe you me..they will have no problem witha scout selling popcorn ( or whatever the fundraier is) to a gay or athiest.

 

BSA joining requirements do not apply to hosting fundraisers for units, individuals or council.

 

So, for your fundraiser, invite anybody and everybody you want.

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I would say "Not all members agree with the policy, and we do what we do to help our young men become the leaders we need for tomorrows world. Thank you."

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Yes vol_scouter, show how all discrimination is the same, so there's no basis to criticize the BSA or the KKK for their membership policies.

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I might say something like: "I agree with you, and I will do what I can about that. Today we are supporting Mr. X, who has Leukemia, can you help us out with that?"

 

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The ABA allows only lawyers to join, the AMA is the same for physicians, and most churches ask one to agree to a set of beliefs.

 

 

I guess I don't see the correlation here..

 

Church is the main problem with creating discrimination, and due to church & state mostly they are left to their own devices, unless they try to force their beliefs on people outside their faith. Normally they are allowed to change through civil war, as their members start seeing the inconsistencies of their church with the world, or they can become totally different, like the Amish or Orthodox Jews. But not all of us want to live the life of the Amish or Orthodox Jews and to their credit they don't try to force us to.

 

 

When ABA is about Lawyers, except they ban the ones who live in Chicago, or the ambulance chaser lawyers.. Then they can be compared to the BSA.

 

When AMA is about Doctors, except for plastic surgeons.. Then they can be compared to the BSA..

 

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From wikipedia: "The American Medical Association called chiropractic an "unscientific cult" and boycotted it until losing an antitrust case in 1987."

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OP: "I suspect that we may be challenged by some folk about BSA's recent re-statement of their discriminatory membership policy."

 

No response is necessary; they came looking for a fight. You, as a representative of scouting should be courteous and avoid their drama like it was Smallpox.

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I agree with bacchus. There is so much misinformation floating around out there, and feeding that fire isn't going to do your fundraiser any good. If you don't know the facts, don't just make them up, and you certainly don't want to go with most of the "advise" you'll receive in here.

BDPT00

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