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Boy Scouts of America

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Boy Scouts of America

Postby maverick » Wed Feb 06, 2013 1:10 pm

As someone who was a scout back in the late 60's and 70's this issue about
gays in the Boy Scouts is a total disgrace and a black eye to an otherwise great
organization.
Was the basic scouting values not supposed to be about kindness, courtesy and
bravery, and built on a foundation of respect and dignity towards others.
Where does a persons sexuality come into play when being a scout? Someone
please explain that one to me. Would love to hear the rational, to me it is just
plain in your face bigotry.
Would you allow you child to become a member if the ban was lifted? If not,
why? Should a gay child not be allowed to experience the same camping/outdoor
experiences as straight child.
Just writing that last sentences makes me feel really weird though I should not
be totally surprised since it was not to long ago that African American's
and later women were allowed on some private golf courses.
What are your thoughts about this as being a former Boy/Girl Scout?
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Re: Boy Scouts of America

Postby BrianF » Wed Feb 06, 2013 7:54 pm

Mav, I agree with you completely; a person's sexuality should not be a reason to exclude them from being a scout or a scoutmaster. Although I was never a scout, I have always thought it was a great opportunity for children and teens to be exposed to the outdoors and to be part of an organization that teaches good values; but bigotry is NOT a good value and their stance taints the entire organization. While it is their right as a private entity, it is to their shame.
My son never had any interest in scouting but I would not have been bothered in the least if he wanted to join and there were openly gay Scouts or Leaders.
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Re: Boy Scouts of America

Postby RoguePhotonic » Wed Feb 06, 2013 8:03 pm

Nothing changes with people. We once had people talking about these issues with woman's rights, then different races and now gays. And some day people will have the same conversation regarding some other issue to come up along the same lines.

The only reasonable defense you can give against someone who is gay in regards to boyscouts is the organization is religious and it goes against what their religion teaches. The same way you cannot be a boyscout if your an atheist. Is it right? Nope... It's what I have always called the tyranny of religion.
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Re: Boy Scouts of America

Postby Troutdog 59 » Wed Feb 06, 2013 8:24 pm

I hadn't actually heard that anyone was complaining much Mav, but if its starting Its bigotry and hate fueled by fear. The fear of change. I should note i was never a scout, but I was raised in a conservative family. My folks had their prejudices, but thankfully raised me and my brother to judge others based on their actions towards us personally, not due to the color of their skin or their religious convictions. I live in the Central Valley and my opinions are not of the majority in my community, but things are changing slowly for the better. I am very proud of my 17 year old daughter, who stands up for the rights of others even in the face of tremendous peer pressure to feel otherwise. Both her and myself have been chastised and ostracized by many due to our opposition of issues such as Prop 8. To answer your question, I would gladly be a part of my grandson or granddaughter being a scout as long as its open to all.
Last edited by Troutdog 59 on Thu Feb 07, 2013 1:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Boy Scouts of America

Postby sparky » Wed Feb 06, 2013 11:07 pm

I agree with mav. And RP, but these are the costs of living in a free society. The right thing to do is to create a new organisation and let the old one die out. Forcing others to conform to your beliefs is equal to them not allowing gays in my humble opinion. They are both wrong.

The right thing to do is to stand up for what is right but let each person decide for themselves.

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Its alluring in its safety but is also a sterile and lifeless world.
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Re: Boy Scouts of America

Postby Fly Guy Dave » Thu Feb 07, 2013 8:41 am

As a former scout, I wasn't aware of their policy when I was a scout, in fact it was never discussed. Now that I am aware of it, I am with Mav and others on this thread that it is an antiquated idea and needs to be cast into the rubbish heap of history, along with ideas of eugenics, male superiority and the like. Times change, so do people, hopefully the scouts will as well.
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Re: Boy Scouts of America

Postby RoguePhotonic » Thu Feb 07, 2013 9:18 am

The idea of creating a new organization is a good one but in our society it's unrealistic. Without the backing of countless millions of dollars you would never be able to get it out in the public eye and have it respected.

The next best thing would be to build a group like that in your own community.
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Re: Boy Scouts of America

Postby BrianF » Thu Feb 07, 2013 9:57 am

The YMCA has a program called Adventure Guides. It is a Father/Son group and requires both must participate. It is for elementary aged kids and is not nearly as structured as Boy Scouts, at least in our area. My son and I were part of a group and the activities were all decided on by the group, so in our case we did alot of hiking and a couple of backpack trips, but other groups did nothing like that - it is all what you want to make it into. It was fun for my son and I to introduce the kids (and most of the fathers) to backpacking, my son started backpacking as a toddler so he was an old hand by then.
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Boy Scouts of America

Postby Bluewater » Thu Feb 07, 2013 6:09 pm

I was a boy scout with an active troop in the late 70's/early 80's. Until the recent debates I wasn't aware of the ban. I remember a saying we had to memorize, something about being helpful, friendly, courteous, kind etc. Although that can be interpreted in many ways it doesn't seem friendly or kind to 'ban' anyone. Aside from the fundamental human rights issue it may all come down to a very practical decision for the BSA. Do they want to stay relevant and financially viable in a changing society? Membership has dropped and some large corporate sponsors like UPS and Merck have already withdrawn funding. The bottom line may force them to get in-line with the changing majority.
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Re: Boy Scouts of America

Postby Rockchucker » Thu Feb 07, 2013 7:19 pm

I truly thought my generation would end all bigotry, prejudging, and racism. I get so sad when people lump all of a group into a catigories. We are all people, people! I'm proud to have open conversation with my son about all these issues. Maybe his generation will look back and laugh, wonder how weird it is to label, belittle a person based on gender, race, or sexual orientation. Silly really.
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Re: Boy Scouts of America

Postby dave54 » Thu Feb 07, 2013 9:14 pm

The issue is complex with far reaching long term effects.

The Church of Latter Day Saints is a major sponsor of Scouting, and the LDS uses Scouting as its youth program. The LDS Church has previously stated they might withdraw from Scouting and form their own organization if gay leaders are forced upon them. Other churches would follow suit. This would effectively end Scouting as we know it.

The values taught in Scouting are still relevant in this world, perhaps even more so now than in generations past. I would not be too quick in dismissing Scouting as outdated.

I am more in favor in letting individual units decide. Church sponsored troops could have their own standards for leaders without impacting secular sponsored troops.
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Re: Boy Scouts of America

Postby Wandering Daisy » Thu Feb 07, 2013 9:35 pm

My father was a scout master. My brother was an Eagle Scout. I was not allowed in because I was a girl. The Girl Scout option did not appealing to me. I started climbing with a co-ed mountaineering club when I was 16. Did more outdoor stuff than all those scouts.
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