Gay boys OK, Gay leaders not OK: Does Boy Scout compromise solve anything?

The Boy Scouts of America decided Thursday to allow openly gay boys to join the Scouts but not to allow openly gay leaders.

From The Associated Press:

“Of the roughly 1,400 voting members of the BSA’s National Council who cast ballots, 61 percent supported the proposal drafted by the governing Executive Committee. The policy change takes effect Jan. 1.

“This has been a challenging chapter in our history,” the BSA chief executive, Wayne Brock, said after the vote. “While people have differing opinions on this policy, kids are better off when they’re in Scouting.”

“However, the outcome will not end the bitter debate over the Scouts’ membership policy.

“Liberal Scout leaders — while supporting the proposal to accept gay youth — have made clear they want the ban on gay adults lifted as well.

“In contrast, conservatives with the Scouts — including some churches that sponsor Scout units — wanted to continue excluding gay youths, in some cases threatening to defect if the ban were lifted.

“We are deeply saddened,” said Frank Page, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s executive committee after learning of the result. “Homosexual behavior is incompatible with the principles enshrined in the Scout oath and Scout law.”

“The Assemblies of God, another conservative denomination, said the policy change “will lead to a mass exodus from the Boy Scout program.” It also warned that the change would make the BSA vulnerable to lawsuits seeking to end the ban on gay adults.

“Texas Gov. Rick Perry also expressed dismay.

“While I will always cherish my time as a Scout and the life lessons I learned, I am greatly disappointed with this decision,” he said.

“The result was welcomed by many liberal members of the Scouting community and by gay-rights activists, though most of the praise was coupled with calls for ending the ban on gay adults.

“I’m so proud of how far we’ve come, but until there’s a place for everyone in Scouting, my work will continue,” said Jennifer Tyrrell, whose ouster as a Cub Scout den leader in Ohio because she is lesbian launched a national protest movement.

“Pascal Tessier, a 16-year-old Boy Scout from Maryland, was elated by the outcome.

Tessier, who is openly gay, is on track to earn his Eagle Scout award and was concerned that his goal would be thwarted if the proposed change had been rejected.

“I was thinking that today could be my last day as a Boy Scout,” Tessier said. “Obviously, for gay Scouts like me, this vote is life-changing.”

“The vote followed what the BSA described as “the most comprehensive listening exercise in Scouting’s history” to gauge opinions.

“Back in January, the BSA executive committee had suggested a plan to give sponsors of local Scout units the option of admitting gays as both youth members and adult leaders or continuing to exclude them. However, the plan won little praise, and the BSA changed course after assessing responses to surveys sent out starting in February to members of the Scouting community.

“Of the more than 200,000 leaders, parents and youth members who responded, 61 percent supported the current policy of excluding gays, while 34 percent opposed it. Most parents of young Scouts, as well as youth members themselves, opposed the ban.

“The proposal approved Thursday was seen as a compromise, and the Scouts stressed that they would not condone sexual conduct by any Scout — gay or straight.

“The Boy Scouts of America will not sacrifice its mission, or the youth served by the movement, by allowing the organization to be consumed by a single, divisive and unresolved societal issue,” the BSA said in a statement….”

So is this a good compromise? Does it help? What does it teach the boys in the program? What happens to the those boys who are gay and participate as youths but then aren’t allowed to be leaders later? Or do you think it will change to allow the gay leaders later?

62 comments Add your comment

Mother of 2

May 24th, 2013
5:58 am

I believe that change happens slowly. This is a private organization that is frequently sponsored by churches. I support the acceptance of all boys who want to join BSA. I also support their right to have whatever rules they’d like to impose. No one is forced to join this group, and there are many other opportunities and organizations that teach boys duty and honor.

BSA will evolve as they see fir for their organization to thrive. Other organizations will develop and fill the hole BSA leaves and it all will balance out.

I find it ironic that my boys didn’t enjoy Boy Scouts because they found the whole thing to be “a little gay.” Their young words, not mine. They both turned out just fine without BSA, and are now happy that they didn’t enjoy a group that is so pervasive that discriminates against gay people. My kids have come a long way in their critical thinking skills.

Johnny Too Good

May 24th, 2013
6:21 am

I personally think this is compromise is a PR move to avoid bad publicity, ya’ll know how the media can turn make you look like the worst people in the world lol


May 24th, 2013
6:53 am

I would not allow my son to be a scout in a troop where the leader acts “gay”. I have lots of gay friends that you would never guess was gay just by being in their company. I spend a lot of time with them some are single and others are couples. They are just like anyone else I know. I also have a few gay friend that you can spot as gay from a mile away. Those are the ones that shouldn’t be working as a role model for our youth. Don’t get me wrong I love them dearly but their role is life as leaders takes a different path.


May 24th, 2013
7:08 am

I was thinking a lot about this topic this morning. On one hand I can see the churches being concerned about it and I firmly believe they have the right to their own beliefs. However, I don’t see how accepting gay members is the same thing as condoning homosexual behavior. I know plenty of churches who accept homosexuals as members although they they openly condem the lifestyle. Couldn’t this be the same thing? I have known several homosexual teens at one of our local Christian schools. The school knows that some of these young men and women are gay. They don’t throw them out. They do try to re-direct them and preach them out of being gay but they are not banned from the school. Why any homosexual (or his/her parents) would want to be a part of one of these churches or schools is beyond my comprehension but they are not banned. Why ban them from the scouts? I think the BSA is making the right decision.
My only concern is openly gay 16 or 17 yr old boys camping with other boys especially if you have two homosexual boys in a group. I think this is a tricky situation. I have an openly gay nephew who is 19 and sleepovers were always an issue. Those things are going to need to be addressed. On thing I know is that children and teens seem to have no concern about whether someone is gay. My nephew was in private and public schools and was accepted by the kids everywhere. The parents are the ones who need to relax. It’s really not a big deal. Let people live their lives.

@ Mother of 2. My son was not interested in scouts either and used those same words that yours did. And my husband was just as glad because he thinks scouts are so wimpy now anyway. I couldn’t care less either way. I was just glad they were not interested because it was one less thing I had to think about.


May 24th, 2013
7:27 am

I am pleasantly surprised by the decision of the scouts.

Good call BSA!


May 24th, 2013
7:31 am

Maude, you are no real friend, and you set a very poor example for your children to follow. I am sad for your children.
So now we have a Boy Scout system where a child can grow up in the scouts, become an Eagle Scout, but as soon as he becomes an adult, he is kicked out and cannot participate in scouting any more. This is the true lesson, I suppose.


May 24th, 2013
7:45 am

I think it is a good step forward. Social changes are slow changes. By having a decision about scouting not discriminating now, they open the door to change in the future about scout leaders.

Fifty years ago, scouts were integrated in my small NC town, and it was a pain to everyone involved. One of the arguments was whether black men with seniority were to have positions above white men with less seniority. It was important at the time- it has faded away entirely with time.

So it will be with gay men as scout leaders.

This is a good first step.


May 24th, 2013
8:02 am

IF my son ever decides to be a boy scout, I do not want him to have a gay scout leader. Sorry, but that’s just me. Quite frankly, I kind of hope to avoid the whole scene.


May 24th, 2013
8:07 am

“The mission of the Boy Scouts of America is to prepare young people to make ethical and moral choices over their lifetimes by instilling in them the values of the Scout Oath and Law.

Scout Oath
On my honor I will do my best
To do my duty to God and my country
and to obey the Scout Law;
To help other people at all times;
To keep myself physically strong,
mentally awake, and morally straight.

Scout Law
A Scout is:
Trustworthy, Loyal, Helpful,
Friendly, Courteous, Kind,
Obedient, Cheerful, Thrifty,
Brave, Clean, Reverent”

P.S. Being a sexual deviant is okay too, I guess.

Does this mean the Scouts will have to remove the “Morality” clause from their oath?

What’s next? Will the athiests demand removal of the “Duty to God” clause?

Why do the Scouts have to change their organization and beliefs to satisfy the demands of a few, vocal, politically correct sexual deviants?

Inquiring minds and all that….


May 24th, 2013
8:10 am

Rest In Peace B.O.A. Time for the mass exodus…

21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.

22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,

23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things.

24 Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves:

25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

26 For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:

27 And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.

28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;

Romans 1:21-28


May 24th, 2013
8:14 am

A good first step. Eventually they will be allowed to lead, which is great. I look forward to “religion” being less in control and look forward to fewer and fewer children being raised to look upon homosexuality in a negative way, so that eventually this bigotry, too, will die out.


May 24th, 2013
8:17 am

Scouting is strange to me anyway. I was in it through elementary school. In retrospect, it was not something I enjoyed.

Also, the SBC can go eff itself. They don’t realize how put-offish having an opinion on EVERYTHING makes Christianity appear to most people. Would it kill them to say “no comment” every now and again? Must they alway advertise their intolerance?


May 24th, 2013
8:18 am

Can people please stop calling homosexuality a “lifestyle.” It’s not a choice or a lifestyle any more than it is for those of us who prefer the opposite sex. It’s how we were born and nothing can change that. A lifestyle is something you choose; sexuality is something you are born with.


May 24th, 2013
8:20 am

Saddened, thanks for your scripture. I didn’t read the part that said “gay children shouldn’t be allowed to associate themselves with other children”.

Or are you saying that sinners shouldn’t be allowed to associate with non-sinners in any capacity?


May 24th, 2013
8:22 am

A, that is the same lame excuse that pedofiles use. It is a choice!


May 24th, 2013
8:28 am

Jarvis, it’s not my scripture. I didn’t make it up. In fact, until college, I knew nothing about it until I started reading it. About your question, though, everyone whoever lived (except 1) is a sinner. The difference is openly living your sin without conviction and not asking forgiveness from the one who is able to forgive and change. Associating with others who openly sin is against the principles of the Bible. Regardless of what society believes today, our country was founded on the same principles. In fact, our Constitution was created by Baptist preachers.


May 24th, 2013
8:43 am

Our Consitituion was created by Baptist Ministers?
You need to read books besides the Bible from time to time.

Google Constitutional Congress and see the varying backgrounds of the roughly 75 delegates.


May 24th, 2013
8:47 am

Jarvis, if you read some books as well, you will find where most of the delegates went to gather their information to form the Constitution.


May 24th, 2013
8:49 am

@ Saddened, I don’t know where you got our Constitution was framed by Baptists. Most of the founding fathers were Diests.

Diest: a person who accepts the belief in god,but does not believe in the religion.


May 24th, 2013
8:50 am

@ Saddened….Most of the Constitution is based on Calvinist and Locke principals. Neither of which are Baptist.


May 24th, 2013
8:58 am

Saddened, you are obviously referencing Madison’s relationship with the Virginia Baptists. He himself was not Baptist, and actually worked out the “Freedom of Religion” principlas as a result of the way the Baptists were treated in Virginia.

Don’t mistake that with following the current Baptist Doctrine which doesn’t even promote personal interpretation of the Bible. Madison was a Diest, but he saw the value in other people’s beliefs; something the current Southern Baptist Convention has zero interest in.


May 24th, 2013
8:59 am

Now I can see your confusion, because one of the early REFORMATIONS of the Baptist church in America adopted Calvinst principals as their own. He was Protestant breaking from the Holy Roman Catholic Church.

The Baptist have tried to laid claim on him but I assure you that many other doctorines (including the Scottish Presbyterian) also have Calvinsism principals. Calvin worked with Luther (Lutherans aren’t baptist) as they both believed in infant baptism. Something most Baptist don’t believe in.

Locke has been accused of Socianism, Arianism, or Deism.


May 24th, 2013
9:00 am

@ jarvis…looks like you and I paid attention in our Political Science classes :)


May 24th, 2013
9:17 am

FCM, I was a history major once upon a time (specialized Western Civilization and Early History).

There wasn’t much money in History….as it was mostly a long time ago, so I went back and got the MBA, but I still love it.


May 24th, 2013
9:19 am

Coming from a long line of Eagle Scouts, my sons will not be joining scouting. All merit badge mentorship I have been doing and funding that we give every year is stopping at this point.

What is next, well we all know that this “compromise” is just going to lead to more court cases to get gay leaders in. Hey, why not revisit the case to let girls in. Mine as well let them bunk with the boys too.


May 24th, 2013
9:26 am

Here’s the thing . . . why is homosexuality, specifically, such a bugaboo with everyone when it comes to “morality”? The 7 Deadly Sins: Lust, Gluttony, Greed, Sloth, Wrath, Envy, Pride. I would surmise that there are VERY few Scout members who are pure as the driven snow when it comes to being a sterling example of ALL of these moral virtues. People don’t get their boxers in a wad if they have a fat Scout leader (even though the example is pretty poor, health-wise.) I’ve known a lot of Scouts over the years — both male and female — and honestly, there is only ONE person I can point to that comes the closest to being the kind of role model we all hope our children encounter in their lives.

Sin is a funny thing. Churches are quick to say, “Love the sinner, hate the sin,” but when it comes to homosexuality, suddenly all bets are off. They have members who cheat on their taxes, who eat too much, drink too much, cheat on their spouses (sometimes even the ministers!), envy their neighbor’s new car, are angry at the world, are slothful in appearance, work ethic or surroundings . . . all of these things are cardinal sins, if you are of a religious nature. So why does homosexuality suddenly become THE sin that everyone draws a line in the sand over? There are some people who are more willing to forgive a murderer than they are someone whose sexuality is different from their own. I just don’t get it.

My son is an Eagle Scout, and is proud of it. He enjoyed Boy Scouts. The first troop he joined was a disaster on a couple of levels, but after a few months of looking, we found a troop (ironically, at our church) with leaders that he respected and admired. It will be interesting to see how BSA evolves with this issue over the next few years.


May 24th, 2013
9:30 am

@Samurai: Girls are allowed in Venture Scouts, a division of Boy Scouts.


May 24th, 2013
9:36 am

@ jarvis…my degree is in Politcal Science. Was thinking law school, got married and had kids instead. No money in Poli Sci either.

I became an accountant.


May 24th, 2013
9:39 am

@ jarvis, if I had stayed in another 2 terms I could have double majored Poli Sci and History….LOL Like you I love it—more from a political/sociology prespective though.

One of my daughters was (at one time) failing Soc Studies, her Dad asked her “have you EVER spoken to your Mom? I know for sure she can tell you all about that stuff!” She did however get a B in the class

My other child loves history/social studies. She will sit and watch the History Channel with me.

Logical Dude

May 24th, 2013
9:49 am

Yes, this is good for scouts because boys should not be dismissed for being who they are.
It’s a good step forward for scouts, good for the boys to know that being gay is acceptable. With the ban on gays, gays were treated as unacceptable. That is wrong.
Good step BSA, but there is still discussions needed for scout leaders. It may take religious entities a little more time to accept it, but it is the right thing to do to not ban any homosexuals for just being who they are.

Learn something

May 24th, 2013
9:49 am

John Adams, our second president, said that pastors were the primary cause that resulted in America’s independence. In fact, the British Parliament derogatroily called the Baptist, Presbyterian, and Congregationlist pastors in America the “Black Regiment” because they ascended to their pulpits each week in the black, clerical robes and stirred the people’s hearts to liberty.

Now consider the roles that pastors have played in our nation’s founding:

In 1729 a preacher from Northampton, MA named Jonathon Edwards began preaching a very unpopular message, “you must be born again.” America was full of churches and lost church members belonging to state sanctioned denominations. Edward’s message was that church membership and baptism are irrelevant without 1st having a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. His persistence in New England was infectious and laid the groundwork for the arrival of a young British evangelist named George Whitefield. Whitefield took America by storm. Over the next 30 years ending with his death in 1770, more than 300,00 gave their hearts to Christ in New England alone.

This was the Great Awakening that led to the drafting of the Declaration of Independence.

usually lurking

May 24th, 2013
9:49 am

@DB – good post. As an ASM, the parent of one Eagle and one soon-to-be (we hope), I am concerned about how our troop’s chartered organization is going to react to this. I never imagined that my son might have to face finding a new troop as one of the hurdles on his path to Eagle.


May 24th, 2013
9:55 am

I don’t have a problem with the vote to allow gay Scouts, as there have always been gay Scouts. Scouting should include everyone and expose all children to the principles and positive lessons they teach, just as churches should welcome everyone. And most churches do welcome everyone so they can hear God’s word and make their own decisions in their personal lives. I do agree with the Scouts’ statement that there is no room in Scouting for any discussions of a sexual nature, and it should stay that way. Scouting is not about activism and politics; it’s about helping boys grow up to be good citizens who have learned many life skills. And there should be no leaders who are gay. That’s a totally different situation, and having leaders who may be attracted to boys or young men who are the same sex is just too big a risk. I think most reasonable people would agree with that.

usually lurking

May 24th, 2013
10:13 am

@Scrivener – by that logic, there should not be female leaders in a Boy Scout troop because they might be attracted to boys or young men.


May 24th, 2013
10:16 am

@ Learn Something….I thought Edwards was Presbyterian. He too was of Calvinist principals and part of one of the first REFORMATIONS of religion in what was the the colonies. He was also the grandfather of Aaron Burr (I actually had to look that one up). Burr’s father was Presbyterian as well.

I did not know George Whitefield. However, I just learned he is one of the founders of Methodism. Whitefield was also of the Calvinist camp. (By the way Calvinist Methodist also trace thier roots to Presbyterians)

I am still not getting how Saddened thinks Baptists framed the US Constitution.

Perhaps all of us claiming to be Baptist, Methodist, Presbyterian…or something Christian other than Episcopal, Catholic, or Orthodox Greek should just rename ourselves Calvinist and stop fighting?

Learn something

May 24th, 2013
10:17 am

@usually lurking – women really should not be leaders with Boy Scouts for one main reason. It defeats the purpose of boys learning to become men.

Learn something

May 24th, 2013
10:21 am

@FCM – one led to the other, by that I mean the Constitution had to be framed once we became an independent nation. There was a mix of denominations, not necessarily Baptist back then, that had a strong influence on both, but probably more on the Declaration of Independence.

C from Marietta

May 24th, 2013
10:21 am

@ Saddened

“In fact, our Constitution was created by Baptist preachers.”

This in fact NOT true. Thomas Jefferson was a deist. Yes, they may have been Christian but saying they were preachers is just not true.

Quote from Benjamin Frankin

“. . . Some books against Deism fell into my hands. . . It happened that they wrought an effect on my quite contrary to what was intended by them; for the arguments of the Deists, which were quoted to be refuted, appeared to me much stronger than the refutations; in short, I soon became a thorough Deist.”
Quote from Thomas Jefferson

“History, I believe, furnishes no example of a priest-ridden people maintaining a free civil government. This marks the lowest grade of ignorance, of which their political as well as religious leaders will always avail themselves for their own purpose.” – to Baron von Humboldt, 1813

About George Washington :

The father of this country was very private about his beliefs, but it is widely considered that he was a Deist like his colleagues. He was a Freemason.

“Religious controversies are always productive of more acrimony and irreconcilable hatreds than those which spring from any other cause. Of all the animosities which have existed among mankind, those which are caused by the difference of sentiments in religion appear to be the most inveterate and distressing, and ought most to be depreciated. I was in hopes that the enlightened and liberal policy, which has marked the present age, would at least have reconciled Christians of every denomination so far that we should never again see the religious disputes carried to such a pitch as to endanger the peace of society.”
– letter to Edward Newenham, 1792

Historian Barry Schwartz writes: “George Washington’s practice of Christianity was limited and superficial because he was not himself a Christian… He repeatedly declined the church’s sacraments. Never did he take communion, and when his wife, Martha, did, he waited for her outside the sanctuary… Even on his deathbed, Washington asked for no ritual, uttered no prayer to Christ, and expressed no wish to be attended by His representative.” [New York Press, 1987, pp. 174-175]

Paul F. Boller states in is anthology on Washington: “There is no mention of Jesus Christ anywhere in his extensive correspondence.” [Dallas: Southern Methodist University Press, 1963, pp. 14-15]

Do you want me to go on about John Adams, John Hamilton, etc…

Many of them were actually Deist. The ones that were Christian came from various denominations.
While Christianity was the main religion for the majority of the founding fathers. There were in fact many that were not Christian.


May 24th, 2013
10:22 am

Learn Something has it right. The only women leaders in my son’s troop are active in helping to do tons of paperwork and occasionally go on outings because they have a problem kid of their own who they’re trying to mentor to, and in both cases I know of there is no father in the picture, unfortunately.

Learn something

May 24th, 2013
10:24 am

@FCM – I am not a believer of Calvinism, which promotes that salvation is only for the “elect” who are chosen, but rather that we all have a free will to choose whether or not Christ is the only way to Heaven.

C from Marietta

May 24th, 2013
10:29 am

However, I want to add, that the Boy Scouts are a private organization. Therefore, they should be able to accept or deny those they wish. What’s next, we allowing total idiots to join Mensa? Everybody wants to be in everyones business. This causes conflict and distrust. Forcing YOUR beliefs on someone else or private organization is just wrong (as long as they are not hurting anyone else). I personally like the policy where it’s not discussed. When I meet an openly gay man or women. I don’t discuss it. I treat them like a person and treat them how I want to be treated. Hatred of opposing views has gone way too far. We all need to chill and take care of your own house.


May 24th, 2013
10:35 am

@Saddened, so now you’re comparing homosexuality to pedophilia??? You are one ignorant, uneducated, close-minded sick individual. I’m “Saddened” that there are so many stupid people like you in the world.


May 24th, 2013
10:42 am

Proud Eagle Scout, proud of the BSA. A step in the right direction. Well done.


May 24th, 2013
11:15 am

Looking at the comments, here are two points: Most evangelical churches (which would include Baptist and Assemblies of God among others) do not allow a gay person to be a member. They would also not allow an open adulterer, shameless thief, or unrepentant liar become a member either. This seems to be a misunderstanding among many posters. Theologically, these churches believe that to join a church, you must be “born again” or “saved.” To do that, you must be repentant of your sin, confess your sin, want God to cleanse you of your sin (through the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ and His victorious resurrection), and vow to live your life according to God’s rules instead of your own for the rest of your life. An openly-anything person can’t (or won’t) do that. The joining of a church isn’t just adding your name to a membership list. Walking the aisle is publicly professing that you have made (or want to make) this decision for salvation.
Even though openly-anything people can’t join a church in that condition, all are certainly welcomed to attend church or any of the church’s activities.
Now here’s the difference in that scenario and the BSA situation: Those who come to church in a sin condition know their condition is unacceptable (to themselves as well as to God, possibly society – not speaking of judgement from other church members here) and are either curious about a relationship to God or are seeking a change. The BSA policy seeks to make openly gay lifestyles an acceptable alternative for everyone to adhere to.
Conservative churches cannot accept a lifestyle involving unrepentant sin. Church members sin, yes they do. But churches don’t accept that as ok either. There are all kinds of systems for dealing with believers who fall into sin. Acceptance of the sin is not on the list of practices.
Here’s the other problem with the BSA change of policy. The reason it makes people uncomfortable is because it puts those who are openly gay and possibly seeking relationships with those they could feasibly have relationships with. For instance, it would never work for straight 16-year-old boys to camp with straight 16-year-old girls. We all know why. It’s the same reason you don’t allow boys and girls to dress in the same locker rooms. Well, 16-year-old gay boys are going to have hormonal issues also. Yet, now, they can bunk with other 16-year-old boys in an environment that states that gay behavior is acceptable. I can see where that would make parents (and possibly the other boys) uncomfortable.Yet, somehow we as a society expect gay people to turn off their hormones, thoughts, and attractions when they are around straight people. That makes no sense to me. I can bet an issue will come up where parents/officials/leaders will have to determine how a straight Scout is supposed to handle an attraction/relationship pursuit from a gay Scout. These are the types of things that young people shouldn’t have to deal with on a camping trip.


May 24th, 2013
11:42 am

I really hate how some people equal homesexuality with being a pedophile. That said, I would be more worried about my son going to catholic church than BSA.

I dropped my fried twinkie

May 24th, 2013
11:48 am

How many little boys or young teens are OUT and saying they are GAY?


May 24th, 2013
12:05 pm

@melshop – and yet, Boy Scouts DOES permit girls and boys to camp together, in their Venture Scouts division, as long as leaders over 21 years of age of both sexes are accompanying the troop.

We teach young people to be responsible in their sexuality primarily by using scare tactics such as abstaining out of fear that “she’ll get pregnant!” That doesn’t really resonate with gays, y’know? Many people perceive a gay “lifestyle” as one of numerous, tenuous sexual encounters with no basis in emotional involvement, and therefore licentious and sinful. Well, p.s. folks, there’s a lot of STRAIGHT kids out there that approach sex as a sport, not a powerful emotional aspect to an intimate relationship.

So, for those parents who are afraid that gay Scouts are going to be leading free-wheeling sexual escapades on BSA camping trips — oh, puhleeze (rolling of eyes). They are kids who are just as unsure and uncomfortable with sex as your son is. Perhaps a Scouting program will be the impetus for teaching all the participants that the true nature of being responsible for yourself both physically, mentally and spiritually also includes not using sex as a recreational pastime.


May 24th, 2013
12:18 pm

melshop, BSA has always and will continue to maintain that ANY sexual behavior….straight or otherwise…is incompatible with scouting.

real life

May 24th, 2013
12:19 pm

This is a great decision and hopefully the BSA will allow gay leaders before long. Too many people believe that all gays are pedophiles and all pedophiles are gay. Neither statement is true. Our Declaration and Constitution were written by men who believed in God but were not a particular religion–a simple basic fact taught in most history classes. Some may have belonged to a particular religion but many did not. They also so the danger of one religion gaining too much power, hence the amendment guaranteeing separation of church and state.
My nephew, who came out early in high school, was a scout. He did not have issued camping with other scouts at all. He had, and still has, excellent close friendships with heterosexual males. None have felt threatened by his sexuality.
Too many people want to impose their religious beliefs on everyone around them. Gay is not a lifestyle choice. It is simply they way some people are. Accept it and go one with your life. Selectively quoting the parts of the bible to support your beliefs is narrow minded and certainly un-Christian. After all, anyone who has really studied the bible understands that we can pretty much quote parts of it to support multiple marriage partners as well as slavery, so using it to oppose gays simply shows bigotry and prejudice. We need to stop being hung up on an individual’s sexual orientation and begin to look at how each individual contributes to the world we live in. I would much rather be around open minded people and not those who claim religion to justify their narrow minded view of the world.


May 24th, 2013
12:19 pm

Some sad, ignorant people in this thread.