New Meaning for “Morally Straight”

New Meaning for “Morally Straight”

Boy Scouts, pledgeCarol Soelberg

The Boy Scouts of America (BSA) will announce next week whether they will retain a long-standing policy of not allowing homosexuals to serve as volunteer leaders or whether they will now allow individuals who are openly homosexual to participate in the scouting program.

The Boy Scouts of America have been under attack from homosexual activists for many years and with integrity and courage, they have withstood the onslaught, but it appears the unrelenting pressure has weakened their resolve.   A January 28 statement from BSA leadership offered this explanation:

“Currently, the BSA is discussing potentially removing the national membership restriction regarding sexual orientation.  This would mean there would no longer be any national policy regarding sexual orientation, but that the chartered organizations that oversee and deliver Scouting would accept membership and select leaders consistent with their organization’s mission, principles or religious beliefs. BSA members and parents would be able to choose a local unit which best meets the needs of their families…  The policy change under discussion would allow the religious, civic or educational organizations that oversee and deliver Scouting to determine how to address this issue. The Boy Scouts would not, under any circumstances, dictate a position to units, members or parents.”

Some would say that allowing each Scout council and each troop the option of determining whether or not to allow homosexual participation in the program is an acceptable compromise.  But those with that attitude and understanding fail to recognize that this proposed change to the Boy Scout policy would signify acceptance, normalization, and validation of behavior that many individuals find unworthy of the stated goals and mission of the Boy Scouts.

Whether or not a particular troop chooses to allow homosexual volunteers and leaders, this potential change in policy puts all parents and their children in the untenable position of paying dues and allegiance to an organization that has now given the stamp of approval to same-sex behavior.

And what will happen to each of these individual councils and troops should they choose not to follow  BSA’s lead to accept and endorse same-sex behavior?

Tony Perkins of Family Research Council warns:

“The BSA would peel away the national prohibition on open homosexuality and pass the political hot potato of “sexual inclusion” to individual troops–most of whom won’t have the financial means or the will to beat back the coming onslaught. A new policy would only shift the attention to local councils, who would be under unfathomable stress to fall in line with BSA headquarters. And as homosexual activists well know, it will be a lot easier to pick off one council at a time than to take down the entire Boy Scouts of America.”

One of the main concerns regarding this change in policy would be the destruction of parental confidence in what their children are being exposed to as they participate in Boy Scout programs. We recognize that there are well-meaning homosexuals who desire to be a part of the scouting movement. But when one defines himself by his sexual practices that changes perception and alters the terms of natural male interaction.  Innocent boys will too quickly become not so innocent as sexual orientation, of necessity, becomes a part of troop dialogue and culture.  Involvement in scouting has been a protection from sexual preoccupation not exposure to it.

This possible change is not something that the majority of Americans would like to see.  A recent Gallup Poll showed that only 42 percent of Americans support a policy of allowing openly gay adults to serve as Boy Scout leaders.  If a poll were taken of strictly parents with sons participating in Scouts, I am certain that level of support for gay scout leaders would drop substantially lower.  One has to wonder who BSA is trying to serve – corporate sponsors and gay activists or the boys and their parents – the people the Boy Scout organization exists for.

United Families International continues to value the values of this 100-year-old-organization that has done so much for young boys and men, but we view this possible change as comprising those values and places BSA supporters in a position of compromising their own if they remain in association with the Boys Scouts.

Please email the  National Offices of the Boy Scouts at:  [email protected] 

There is still time to impact this possible policy change.

UPDATE:  United Families International originally gave the BSA phone number to call. (972-580-2000)  The Boy Scout phone lines, however, have been overwhelmed.  Be aware that you will need to let the phone ring as many as 20 times before the call is picked up.  BSA has asked that people consider an email instead.  Be sure to put the thrust of your statement to BSA in the subject line of your email as it may be the only thing that is read and noted.  

  • Harvey Rosieur
    Posted at 17:37h, 30 January

    The decision the Boy Scouts Association has to make, is whether or not the issue is of real importance. It is to Christians, for example, but is Boy Scouts a Christian orgnanisation? I thought not. In which case it is simply a matter of a majority decision according to the rules of that body.Those who hold clear views on the matter will simply ‘vote with their feet’.according to the decision made It is unthinkable, in my opinion, that any organisation of clear principal would sacrifice those principals merely to remain popular.
    As a Christian I believe that we can expect to see the demise of much of what we have taken for granted, because worldly standards/the lack of standards, are fast becoming more at variance with what we believe.There are of course people of other religious beliefs, or view points, who face choices as well.You cannot please everybody when holding particular standards where others do not. Sad, but this is simply ‘wake up’ time. A time of shaking you could say.

  • Connie Preuss
    Posted at 09:07h, 31 January

    I am against gays in the BSA. I have grandchildren in there and do not want them exposed to any of that.

  • Diane
    Posted at 15:33h, 31 January

    One comment that I read on this topic that really stood out and made sense was that the BSA are basically giving up the responsibility of this issue to individual troops. They will say each troop can decide whether or not to allow homosexual leaders or scouts. In essence this moves all law suits filed by the gay lobby against the Boy Scouts to the individual troops. The BSA no longer has costly litigation and the troops can’t afford much.

    I am wondering if this will mean that transgendered boys are welcome too?

  • Margaret
    Posted at 18:15h, 01 February

    I am the sister of a professional boy scout leader, mother of boy scouts and of a daughter who has served in cub scouts for 25 years, grandmother of boy scouts and one who would be saddened to see the Boy Scouts of America succumb to changing their policy of eligible volunteer or professional scouters, whatever their reasons. Young people have enough challenges to their own and family standards, without this kind of onslaught from previously safe and “morally straight” standards from their scouting leaders and scout companions.

    We do not expect the BSA to mold our children into their image, but certainly have appreciated the comfort of them not changing what we teach in our own home and church connections.

  • Kent and JaNeene Anderson
    Posted at 13:06h, 02 February

    We feel that this would be an improper approach to the purpose and goals of the Boy Scouts of America. I have grandchildren and Great Grandchildren that I do not need or want them exposed to this situation. Those of us that have clear and defined moral standards and trust our children and great grandchildren to the Boy Scouts of America need the structure that has been so great in the past. Kent

  • reed bigelow
    Posted at 19:11h, 07 February

    Do you publish all opinions expressed to you ? or just those that support your viewpoints? I know there are those with dissenting viewpoints, but their posts are not being printed? Why? Your bias is very telling! What would all these people think if they knew how many gay adult leaders and gay scouts were in their organizations for the last 2 decades? I served with many gay military members. They were the best in my unit. And no, gay people are not open or trying to convert others to their way of life. I see a lot of parents talk about what they feel is best for their children. but I don’t see any children’s thoughts about what they already accept. While parents are becoming like the Hatfields and McCoys on this issue, it’s very possible that our children have already moved on and are totally acceptable of gay rights and gay people. I know my son is. rather than dictating our values to our children, I believe it’s past time we started talking and also listening to our children. Many of our adult BSA leaders are over 60 and retired and haven’t talked with their own children in over 30 years. Their beliefs and values are out of date and out of touch with our current youth. Instead of fearing the unknown and being stubbor n and saying that’s not the way we’ve always done things, maybe it’s time we opened our minds and asked what is really the best choice . maybe it’s time we stopped talking and yelling and started listening. Scouting is supposed to be for the youth. and Boy Scouts is supposed to be run by the youth – not the adults!

  • Shirley Oakley
    Posted at 21:30h, 07 February

    For Boy Scouts of America to accept openly homosexual leadershp is to undermine all that the club stands for. This action will change the training , questions asked and instruction given.
    The best interests of the boys that are most likely to be enrolled in BSA and the families that have given so liberally of their time and energies to make the program a success, will be completely undermined.

    I have three grandsons, who would be in Boy Scouts of America in a few short years. However if this change takes place, another option will certainly be looked at.
    The high quality training that has been treasured through the years, is being put at extreme risk.
    Hopefully if this action is taken it will be the beginning of the end of BSA- a sad day indeed.

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