The Boy Scouts Cave In

Boy Scouts Gay Vote

The Boy Scouts have fought long and hard against being forced to include avowed homosexuals in its ranks as either Scouts or scoutmasters. In the Boy Scouts of America v. Dale (2000), the Supreme Court upheld the Boy Scouts’ First Amendment right of expressive association in removing an assistant scoutmaster who was “an avowed homosexual and gay rights activist.”

In writing for the majority, Chief Justice William Rehnquist said that the “presence [of the avowed homosexual] in the Boy Scouts would, at the very least, force the organization to send a message, both to the youth members and the world, that the Boy Scouts accepts homosexual conduct as a legitimate form of behavior.” Forcing the Scouts to do this would have violated their First Amendment right because, as the Court noted, the Boy Scouts asserts that it “teach[es] that homosexual conduct is not morally straight,” and that it does “not want to promote homosexual conduct as a legitimate form of behavior.”

This just changed. On May 23, 2013, the Boy Scouts of America’s national governing body voted to lift its long-standing ban on openly homosexual youth in the program. Effective January 1, 2014, “No youth may be denied membership in the Boy Scouts of America on the basis of sexual orientation or preference alone.”

The organization, as Justice Rehnquist might express it, just sent a message. It’s the same message that the homosexual activist was trying to force the Scouts to send back in 2000—“that the Boy Scouts accepts homosexual conduct as a legitimate form of behavior.” Does this seem too harsh an assessment?

The official position of the Scouts had been to “not grant membership to individuals who are open or avowed homosexuals” (emphasis added). A BSA June 28, 2000 press release stated that “Boy Scouting makes no effort to discover the sexual orientation of any person. Scouting’s message is compromised when prospective leaders present themselves as role models inconsistent with Boy Scouting’s understanding of the Scout Oath and Law.”

In other words, the Scouts had a rule somewhat similar to the “Don’t Ask; Don’t Tell” policy that the US military entertained and, for the same reason, it was not allowed to stand. It interfered with the rationalization for homosexual behavior. In other words, by announcing their proclivities publicly, “open” homosexuals are not only telling others that they have accepted themselves as active homosexuals; they are insisting that others accept them on that basis, as well. What otherwise would be the reason for openly declaring their sexual proclivities?

On June 7, 2012 the Scouts’ policy had been not to “grant membership to individuals who are open or avowed homosexuals or who engage in behavior that would become a distraction to the mission of the BSA. Scouting believes same-sex attraction should be introduced and discussed outside of its program with parents, caregivers, or spiritual advisers, at the appropriate time and in the right setting.”

Why, less than a year later, is this no longer true?

By now accepting openly homosexual members, the Boy Scouts are, at the very least, certainly going to be dealing with a major distraction (can homosexual Scouts bunk together?). But what is much worse, it is implicitly accepting the rationalization for homosexual sexual behavior as part of its moral formation. This will make the Scouts complicit in the corruption of youth. It is avoiding doing this explicitly by continuing to insist on chastity from its Scouts in its policy that that “any sexual conduct, whether heterosexual or homosexual, by youth of Scouting age is contrary to the virtues of Scouting.” However, if it is accepting the homosexual inclination as legitimate, what then could be wrong with the thing toward which it is inclined, meaning homosexual behavior?

“I’ve waited 13 years for this,” said Matt Comer, now 27, who had to leave his scout troop at age 14 after he started a Gay-Straight Alliance at his school. Since the fourth grade, he said Thursday to the New York Times, he had dreamed of becoming an Eagle Scout and was crushed when he was denied the chance. “Today we finally have some justice for me and others,” he said. “But gay youths will still be told they are no longer welcome when they turn 18.”

But what Mr Comer had done by starting his Gay-Straight Alliance was directly to challenge the teachings and regulations of the Boy Scouts. In other words, rather than abide by the rules of the organization he had voluntarily joined, he insisted on his own rules to the extent to which the Boy Scouts must be made to conform to them. That is Mr. Comer’s idea of justice: conforming others to his will.

This is what makes it particularly hilarious to read the cant used by the homosexual movement to celebrate its victory. It’s all now about inclusiveness. Reuters reported that the founder of Scouts for Equality, “Zach Wahls, an Eagle Scout raised by two lesbians, said the time had come for change. ‘There is nothing Scout-like about exclusion of other people, and there is nothing Scout-like about putting your own religious beliefs before someone else’s’.”

Apparently, Wahls failed to notice that the new policy will lead to the exclusion of many more people than the policy excluding open homosexuals did. He also neglected to notice that the Scouts have not yet been stripped of their requirement that Scouts must possess a belief in God in order to be a member. Why should the Scouts any longer be allowed to get away with this exclusive requirement? Think of all the atheists who want to go Scouting. Should they be denied this experience simply to uphold a belief in God? Why shouldn’t the Scouts be forced to deny that principle so that the atheist can go camping? Wouldn’t this also be “compassionate, caring and kind,” as Wayne Brock, the paid chief executive of the Boy Scouts, characterized his decision on homosexual Scouts? No, in fact, it would not be those warm and fuzzy things; it would be derelict in denying the fundamental principle of the importance of belief in God in forming manly character—just as this decision was derelict in ineluctably accepting the rationalization for homosexuality.

Now, to the newly excluded by newly included. The New York Times reported that:

Allison Mackey of Hanover, Pa., has five sons—one an Eagle Scout, three now active in scouting and an eight-year-old who had planned to join. The family has discussed the issue and reached a decision, she said: all the sons were willing to abandon the Boy Scouts if openly gay members are allowed. “The Boy Scouts are something we’ve really enjoyed because they celebrate manliness and leadership,” she said. But she added that she and her husband were “looking to encourage our sons in traditional Christian values. To stand by principles would be difficult,” she said. “But we’re going to have to say ‘no.’ The organization is giving up freedom.”

What freedom might that be? Well, certainly the freedom not to be instrumentalized by the homosexual movement to move its agenda through society. The Boy Scout leadership must see that this is what it has allowed to happen. And it is only the beginning.

Under tremendous pressure, the Boy Scouts finally flinched when it allowed its principles to be put up for a vote and now, after the vote, it caved. Alas, it was the last significant private institution in United States standing against the homosexual juggernaut, which only just last year took down the US military. The proposed compromise seems slightly disingenuous since there had never been a sexual orientation litmus test for entering Scouts, and the only thing disallowed was the open promotion of the homosexual cause. Therefore, what does this policy change mean, if not the abandonment of the prohibition of such promotion? If you accept the promotion, you accept what it teaches. No matter how the Boy Scout leadership tries to camouflage it, that is what is so iniquitous about their cave-in.

This decision was like throwing red meat to the wolves. They will want more. And more is already being asked for.

“Today’s vote is a significant victory for gay youth across the nation and a clear indication that the Boy Scouts’ ban on gay adult leaders will also inevitably end,” GLAAD spokesman Rich Ferraro said. “We’ll continue urging corporate donors and public officials to withhold their support,” until the leadership issue is resolved.

How will the Boy Scouts stand in the winds that blow against then? They will have to reap the wild wind and not much will be left standing. Alas, it was a great group and it need not have acceded to its own demise. It could have continued fighting—according to the very principles of courage and leadership that they are supposed to be instilling in the young.

Editor’s note: This essay first appeared Friday, May 24, 2013 on Mercatornet.com and is reprinted under a Creative Commons license.

Robert R. Reilly

By

Robert R. Reilly is the author of The Closing of the Muslim Mind (ISI Books). He is writing a book on the natural law argument against homosexual marriage for Ignatius Press.

  • Michael Paterson-Seymour

    The Mormon Church, the largest sponsor of scout troops, has issued a communiqué, welcoming the change.

    “The Church’s long-established policy for participation in activities is stated in the basic instructional handbook used by lay leaders of the Church: “Young men … who agree to abide by Church standards [are] welcomed warmly and encouraged to participate”. This policy applies to Church-sponsored Scout units. Sexual orientation has not previously been—and is not now—a disqualifying factor for boys who want to join Latter-day Saint Scout troops. Willingness to abide by standards of behavior continues to be our compelling interest.

    These standards are outlined in the booklet For the Strength of Youth and include abstinence from sexual relationships. We remain firmly committed to upholding these standards and to protecting and strengthening boys and young men.”

    • lifeknight

      Nice cop out reply. I wonder how many parents will want to have their boys sharing a tent with an openly gay scout? It is the end of Scouting. Period.

      • geoffreysmith1

        None at all. The threat of catching HIV is only too real. There is nothing more dangerous to humanity than an HIV-infected ‘friendly’ associate.

    • Joanne

      If morality only encompassed one’s sexual activity, then BSA’s defense of their definition of “morally straight” could be accepted. But the inclusion of openly gay youth is affirming a belief system. So are the Mormons are basically saying this, unless they are just being shallow & legalistic.

  • Deacon Ed Peitler

    The end of boy scouting as we knew it. I will be encouraging my son to remove our grandson from scouting. Hopefully, there will appear a new organization called Catholic Boy Scouting.

  • AcceptingReality

    Wonderful insight (phraseology) that the Scouts have given up their freedom to NOT be instrumentalized by the homosexual movement to move their agenda through society.

  • lifeknight

    I have two scouts up for the Board of Review for completing all Eagle requirements. Their group took a vote (obviously ignored) to ban openly gay scouts. How sad that this laudable organization “caved” after 102 years of forming young men. We are done with them.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Carol-Leeda-Crawford/631144224 Carol Leeda Crawford

    There are many men who have joined the ranks of so called “homosexual” (as if a person can be their desires), because when they were at a vulnerable age of development between 8 – 14 and look up to older boys and men as role models they were either molested or led into confusion by these same role models. If you read Erik Ericson’s psycho/social development stages of latency and adolescence you will note there are many factors that are a breeding ground for initiating these vulnerable boys into questioning their sexuality or being drawn into homosexual behaviour.

    Imagine idolizing a teacher who appears confident and well versed on just about everything. A young insecure or impressionable boy will want to be just like him, worshiping his every word and action. What will happen on a camping trip or outing? We have countless stories from men about being sexually molested by teachers and other men in authority. How they remained silent because they were convinced their participation was consensual, especially if they experienced pleasure from the interactions. These same teachers and authority figures are well versed in justifying their actions to themselves and these vulnerable children.

    • Theorist

      Who didn’t see this coming!? I mean, it’s called “The Boy Scouts”, so of course we knew men of a “certain persuasion” would love to infiltrate it. Even in the good-old days one can easily deduce that such an institution would become a magnet for said men (Baden-Powell right?). Also, weren’t there too many homosexual relationships even between boys in british boarding-schools from the early 20th century? And despite my love and admiration for monks, who couldn’t have seen that the monasteries would be easily undermined by those of a “happy” character?

      • Bono95

        How many monasteries do you know of that were undermined by “happy character”?

        • geoffreysmith1

          All of them.

          • Bono95

            Then why aren’t they all empty, closed-down, or destroyed?

            • geoffreysmith1

              Some of them were affected to a much lesser degree than the others. You don’t shut down a monastery because one or two monks have committed a crime. Otherwise, you can shut down the USA because of all the criminals in Washington.

        • tedseeber

          I know of three personally. And they are pretty empty, not having had novices agree to join for years, with most of the monks exceeding the age of 70, and are in the process of either closing down or converting into secular nursing homes.

      • John200

        Well, one rhetorical question deserves another; Why would any sane person expect that a tiny percentage of homo”sex”uals could undermine the image of Catholic clergy?*

        After all, homo”sex”uals have always been a tiny percentage of church membership, as they are among the human race.

        * The answer is, the anti-Catholic media greatly expanded the problem in its eagerness to help the church and perform its usual objective analysis. These worthies forgot (ha, ha, oh, gosh, I made comedy! Sometimes I kill me!) that public schools and non-Catholic churches had higher rates of homo”sex”ual abuse of boys than the Catholic church.

        So, come one, Theorist, do the Church some good; laugh these silly media “professionals” to scorn. There is no need to pretend they have a case against the Catholic church. Don’t repeat their krappe. You KNOW they cannot support it.

  • Alecto

    They confine it to gay scouts now, but it’s really about allowing gay scoutmasters, and as we all well understand, that is code for NAMBLA, whose fingerprints are all over this. Scared? You should be. Any responsible father and mother would run, run from this organization.

    • Adam__Baum

      “NAMBLA, whose fingerprints are all over this.”

      And a good deal of the corporate anf government elite.

  • TheodoreSeeber

    Let the gays have the military and the scouts, we have The Knights of Columbus and the Squires, it is easy to see who, in the words of our savior, has the better part.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mary-Myers/100000450908565 Mary Myers

    There is a wonderful new option for Catholic boys! Catholic convert, Taylor Marshall (taylormarshall.com) has started “Catholic Scouts of St. George.” Log onto his wonderful website and learn about this great organization and what it will bring to Catholic boys as an alternative to the Boy Scouts.
    Sorry to see the Boy Scouts buckle to politically correct pressure. They have pleased no one with their splitting the baby decision.

  • Anne Campbell

    It frankly stuns me that Catholics would be so willing to cast the first stone by assuming that allowing gay Boy Scouts will bring about rampant pedophilia. Have we completely forgotten how many children, past and present, have been molested by supposedly celibate, “morally straight” priests?

    • MarkRutledge

      Anne, the priestly pederasty problem was a gay priest problem, no matter how much the politically correct want to ignore that fact. So yes, Anne, Catholics know full well the consequences of ignoring same-sex attraction disorder.

    • ColdStanding

      We most certainly have not forgotten! Relaxing the discipline taught by our Holy Religion that previously guided the faithful through these shoals for over 2000 years was a multi-billion dollar disaster world wide and lead to untold loss of souls (and this is the worst, who cares about the money).

      Sorry to break the news to you, but our experience as Catholic faithful has been that entrusting the flock to those that have compromised reason in favour of expiating the lusts of the flesh leads to Old Testament-style wreckage.

      Note: Jesus said to the adulteress, “Go, and sin no more.”, not “Next time, be more careful.” He did not suggest that her actions were not sinful. He did not approve of what she had done. He certainly did not “validate” her identity as an adulteress. We can draw the conclusion that there is disordered behaviour, sin, in sexual relations between humans. Show me the passage in the Holy Bible or in the tradition of the Holy Faith where it is recommended that their be an “Adulterer’s Pride” march.

      It also needs to be pointed out that the Pharisees conspired to bring the adulteress before Jesus in order to ensnare Him in a sexual scandal, if only indirectly. Not much has changed, except the characters involved.

      • musicacre

        Absolutely true!

    • Adam__Baum

      Yes, it happened that some Priests molested children. The problem was compounded by a inadequate Episcopal action. It happened in an environment that exploited a presumption of trust.

      Interestingly, it happens everywhere adults and children interact. It’s still occurring in public schools every day, but the chattering classes never make jokes that advance the idea that every teacher is to be regarded with suspicion or that the acts of teachers are indictments of the NEA or public education. Instead, the entertainment media celebrated the marriage of Mary Kay Latearno to her former victim as a triumph of “romance”. Of course, parents send their children to school with the same presumption of the absence of sexuality.

      It frankly stuns ME that somebody posting on a Catholic website would insidiously advance the notion that child sexual predation is something that is unique to Catholics (or their clergy) and the the proper collective penance for those horrific acts is not to increase vigilance, but to suspend it.

    • tedseeber

      Which is exactly why we know what will happen when you put older homosexual boys together with cub scouts.

    • cestusdei

      They were abused by homosexual priests. That is the pink elephant in the living room.

  • Anne Campbell

    Also, “avowed homosexual” is a completely ridiculous term. No one takes a vow to be gay, any more than people take a vow to be Ukrainian or brown-eyed or deaf.

    • Augustus

      If you were paying attention, you would know that the whole debate was over whether the Boy Scouts would accept members who PUBLICLY affirmed that they were gay. If they kept it to themselves, there would be no issue. The gay lobby sought to AFFIRM homosexuality by pressuring the organization to accept OPENLY homosexual boys in the scouts. Taking a “vow” as you describe it is a complete misrepresentation of the debate. (Whether gays are born that way is highly debatable and completely irrelevant to this issue.) Did you even read the article or were you just reacting on impulse?

    • Adam__Baum

      Your analogy is slightly flawed. Brown eyes and deafness are factual attributes, inherent to the individual. Ethnicity, albeit something of a cultural construct is similarly inherent. Until recent decades, acts, not people were homosexual.

      Somewhere along the line, the chattering classes decided (in all areas of sexuality) decided people had no control of over their impulses, and were slaves to them. Part of slavery is crushing the individual identity, subordinating and incorporating it into the master’s identity. That’s why the message to persons with sex sex attraction is that they are “gay”.

      It would be interesting to apply this logic to people who are tempted to steal, or perhaps have kleptomania and require the rest of society to tolerate, celebrate and accommodate theft.

    • AnthonyMa

      Homosexuality is the act, not the thought. Avowed homosexual means the individual decides to let everyone in the world know what they do behind closed doors as well as in public men’s rooms, city parks and dark alley ways Yes, a person born in the Ukraine is Ukrainian, but I don’t know of any country known as “Homosexulia”. And before you start bringing up the opinion about homosexuality being genetic, if you believe that, you will logically have to believe the same thing is true of bestiality, necrophilia, pedophilia and other deviant sexual practices.

      • NoreenD

        And if someone is an alcoholic, does that mean they should continue drinking because they were “born” that way. What about serial rapists? Should be give them a free pass because they are that way??

    • Paul

      ??? you lost me there ???

  • Golden Wolf

    There are already alternatives popping up. Many, many Catholic troops are switching over. God bless them. The BSA is now a shell and will soon crumble. Sorry to see it go, but not if its leadership is as bad an spineless as that.

    • musicacre

      It had its season. If there’s one thing to be learned, perhaps vigilance is always needed, even when it seems there is clear sailing. In the un-challenging times we let our guard down and then it’s harder to muster the courage and strength when the enemy attacks.

  • Adam__Baum

    The thing that is lost in this debate is that it isn’t necessary to find homosexuality intrinsically disordered to have opposed this move-sexuality of any kind doesn’t belong in the scouts.

    My understanding is that this was relentlessly pushed by a few board members, especially the one that is associated with a “big 4″ accounting firm (you know the guys that gave us any number of a myriad scandals over the past decade or so). They can issue edicts, but they can they can’t fill the ranks.

    The point of Scouting is to instill principals. The organization has exhibited the opposite of valor.

    The answer to this is very simple. Do not acquiesce. If you are a scout, quit, A leader, quit. If you are a donor, stop. Give them their “New Coke” minute, even if the analogy is muddled by the fact that Coke is among among those companies that exert the most facist pressure in this regard.

    • Paul McGuire

      You’re right that “sexuality of any kind doesn’t belong in the scouts.” As they said in the article, it is still expected that scouts refrain from sexual activity. Coming out as gay does not immediately mean being sexually active. There are plenty of people, gay or straight, who refrain from sexual activity for various reasons until they reach age 18.

      The difference with this new policy is simple. Boys who recognize they are gay can come out to their troop without being forced to leave. One’s sexual orientation is a key part of who they are separate from any sexual activity.

      • Steven Jonathan

        No Paul, our sexual addictions are not a key part of who we are, they are a key part of our fallen behavior that must be battled, confessed, forgiven and reformed, and only by the grace of God.

      • lifeknight

        Paul, you are back defending the LGBT crowd!

      • tedseeber

        The main reason being age of consent laws.

      • msmischief

        One’s sexual orientation is private. To spread it about is not worthy of any honorable man or boy.

        • Paul McGuire

          How is it private? It is common for people to introduce others to their significant others, whether married or in a serious relationship. In most cases this sends the clear message that the person is straight. Gay men come out frequently before they meet someone serious so that when they do, they don’t have to go through the steps of telling everyone. I got to enjoy a double coming out with a number of people (coming out and introducing them to my boyfriend).

          Politicians and CEOs give speeches all the time in which they mention the support of their wife because one’s life partner is a big part of who they are. Eventually, gay men won’t feel they have to come out because they will just introduce people to the man they meet or mention their husband in a speech. Until that time, which will hopefully come in my lifetime, coming out is important for visibility because it is easy to assume you don’t know anyone who is gay if those people don’t tell you.

          • Adam__Baum

            A wife is not a “life partner”. You can attempt to install some veneer of marriage on homosexuality, but it’s still a veneer.

  • Paul McGuire

    Coming out as gay does not automatically mean one is sexually active. It is a way of challenging the assumption that everyone is straight until proven otherwise.

    To suggest that there is a single “homosexual lifestyle” is to misunderstand the vast differences among gay men. Some enjoy promiscuity and sex with multiple partners. Others seek monogamy. Others still seek to live a life of celibacy. No one way of living exists that is shared by all gay men.

    Those who grow up without shame associated with their attractions are more likely to seek out meaningful relationships. By accepting gay scouts, this policy change helps encourage healthy development of gay men.

    • Steven Jonathan

      Paul,
      your words are silly. The vastly overwhelming majority of “gay” men “enjoy promiscuity” and have more partners than one can usually count and much of it is anonymous at that. It is disingenuous and intentionally misleading to suggest that “some” are promiscuous when in fact if there are any at all that seek monogamy, to which there is no credible evidence other than your word and those who are apologists for the homosexualist agenda, it would be the rarest of situations. By definition, sex addiction implies promiscuity.

      That gobblydegook about growing up without shame and seeking meaningful
      relationships is a pathological argument that holds no weight. Shame is a fruit
      of action and is intrinsically produced. Those with SSA who act on their disordered impulses ought to be ashamed just as I am when I act on my impulses contrary to God’s law. Right now Catholics are shamed publically by the mass media, the schools and our governments and I would venture to say that not a singe orthodox Catholic is bothered or shamed in the slightest by what Rachal Madow thinks of us. What shames us is what shames all humans whether or not they can admit it to themselves, that is sin.

    • NoreenD

      Unfortunately, it is the sexually active homosexuals, usually those with multiple partners, who shout the loudest. They’re the ones that get the attention. They’re the ones who hound people and organizations until they get what “they” want and the hell with everyone else. That’s what’s it’s all about.

    • tedseeber

      Fine, take the boy scouts, we still have KofC Squires.

      • Paul McGuire

        Funny you would suggest the Squires. I was a squire back in the day and if there were stricter rules than the boy scouts I sure wasn’t made aware of them. It was a nice way to hang out with other Catholic boys but it was never really that interesting. Of course I left the Squires long before I came out.

        • tedseeber

          No stricter rules- but at least you learn your faith, if you actually pass any of the levels.

          Plus, of course- post 2002 sex scandals, the Church in general has gotten a LOT stricter about such things, and when they aren’t, even archbishop level heads roll.

      • JohnH

        Do the KofC Squires have any different policy? Why would it? One can be a faithful Catholic in good standing while also having a same-sex attraction. It’s sinful to engage in homosexual acts.

        • tedseeber

          It is that last part, which is the difference.

          SSA is tolerated in both.

          Homosexual acts are not tolerated in either.

          But Squires doesn’t have campouts as a rule. It is far more common for squires activities to, like the councils that sponsor them, be corporal works of mercy of some sort.

          As opposed to the boy scouts where they will now be putting SSA people directly into temptation’s way.

          • JohnH

            As a boy scout I spent over 200 nights on campouts. I don’t think that there is any particular temptation for a boy with SSA on a typical campout. Sleeping in the same tent as someone you know is not attracted back is not a temptation. If it’s felt it’s needed, a boy with SSA could use a single-man tent just for himself.

            • tedseeber

              My experience in a normal high school when I had Asperger’s that set off the gaydar of homosexuals, was highly different.

              Part of the reason I started to try to be less attractive in my 20s was the mistaken impression that I would be attracted back.

    • Carl Albert

      is it the goal of homosexual young men/youths to be defined by their sexual preference? that seems to be directly contrary to the mission of the scouts – which is to develop character and promote responsible citizenship. this mission should unite those called to participate. at the mission’s core are sameness and commonality. who is it – particularly among young people – that desires to be labeled by a single, defining characteristic? sexuality should not be at issue.
      for me, this is ultimately the invalidating motivation of the “gay rights” movement – it seeks capitulation, and calls it acceptance. the result of which is further separation and resentment. now though, at least the movement has their legal basis for discrimination – which is the foothold of progressive politics.

    • poetcomic1 .

      100% Proof Gay Boilerplate Lies…go it sell at the Huff, we aint buyin’. We are not talking about gay men, we are talking about young boys. Out boys are, as a rule, sexually voracious and particularly hungry for STRAIGHT partners not other ‘gay’ partners. Duh.

      • Paul McGuire

        So there is no such thing as gay boys? If someone is gay, they aren’t going to be voraciously straight until they are 18 and then all of a sudden become gay. It doesn’t work that way.

        Most gay men report knowing they were gay by age 5. Most then develop feelings for other boys at the same time as others their age start to notice girls. Deny it all you want but you are the one who was taught lies.

        • slainte

          What is it that one “knows” at 5 years old regarding sexuality?

          • Paul McGuire

            Here is one such article detailing younger people knowing they are gay. One boy quoted in the article says “I knew I was different in second grade – I just didn’t really put a name to it until I was 11. My parents said, ‘How do you know what your sexuality is if you haven’t had any sexual experiences?’ I was like, ‘Should I go and have one and then report back?’”
            http://www.nytimes.com/2009/09/27/magazine/27out-t.html?pagewanted=1&partner=rss&emc=rss&_r=0

            Think of all the little girls who play house and dream of being a mom at a young age or fantasize about princes. They aren’t dreaming of sex but deep down they know.

  • Deacon Ed Peitler

    We are certainly to be proud of our bishops for explicating for the faithful the natural order of creation when it comes to sexual attraction.

  • Paul

    That’s what happen you elect unprincipled woosies to lead the BSA. Let them have the BSA. Just start a new organization and name it Straight Boys Scouts of America.

  • NormChouinard

    Isn’t this new policy basically the same as the Church’s view on homosexuality? Welcome the sinner and abstain from the sin, no?. The BSA re-affirm that ” any sexual conduct, whether heterosexual or homosexual, by youth of Scouting age is contrary to the virtues of Scouting.” What am I missing?

    • tedseeber

      The inevitable destruction of that re-affirmation by events.

      • NormChouinard

        So the Church should not be welcoming sinners to their doors. Guess I cannot attend.

        • msmischief

          You are welcome on the same terms anyone else: to have your sins denounced rather than affirmed.

        • John200

          As you know and pretend to not know (how boring), the church welcomes all sinners. It also intends to lead them to heaven. That is accomplished by, first, correcting them. Then getting them to know how much God cares for them. And… etc., etc. But you know all that.

          You would never have considered criticizing the church without, at the very least, learning the obvious truths that it teaches. You don’t want to join 100+ million doinks who criticize the Church without knowing the faith….

          Eh?

        • tedseeber

          Welcoming sinners at the door- to have their sins denounced and be saved from the slavery of sin- is not the same as letting the wolf in to eat the sheep.

          • NormChouinard

            I think we share the same concerns but see the situation differently. The BSA troups that I am familiar with are connected to Catholic parishes. If the adult scout leaders reaffirm the scout’s and church’s view on sexuality, how does the wolf eat the sheep?

            • tedseeber

              The problem isn’t what they are teaching. The problem, as I see it, is directly putting the SSA teen in temptation with jailbait.

              I would have the same objection with a mixed Boy-and-Girl scout campout from the heterosexual side.

              After the number of priests who rejected their vow of celibacy to become child molesters, I am under no illusion about the power of the Church to preach sexuality to this generation.

              • NormChouinard

                I see your point. I don’t have a reply to allay your concerns. I would suggest that a SSA scout currently in the scouts via “don’t ask, don’t tell” is the same threat as the open SSA scout, perhaps even more of a threat. Perhaps something like a “mandatum” from scout leaders to the local bishop would help, I am not sure.

                OTOH, I strongly disagree about your view on the Church’s moral authority to teach on sexuality. There is no doubt that the black sheep clergy have caused great harm. As have their seniors who tried to cover their tracks. That said, on balance, the Church has been a great force for healthy sexuality in line with Catholic doctrine. The MSM would have us believe as you suggest that the Church is incapable of exercising moral authority. But any balanced understanding of these tragic stories that our clergy at its worst was no worse and probably better in caring for our youth than the culture at large. Since the purge of these priests, I would suggest that a Catholic youth group right now is the safest place to put a young child.

                The Church has precisely the right message for today’s culture. Don’t add to the voices trying to silence them.

                • tedseeber

                  It isn’t their moral authority that has a problem in my mind- we need the message desperately.

                  It is their actual political ability to break through the noise of the MSM sufficiently to teach to this generation- after failing to form a generation of priests. Morality by consent has a stranglehold on our culture, one that is not going to let go easily. There is a reason that we’re losing 30% of this generation to the Nones, who preach only consent.

                  I would agree that since 2002- one of the safest places in society for a kid is a Catholic youth group- would that the Boy Scouts and public schools adopt the same policies.

    • msmischief

      That any homosexual-inclined youth was free to join as long as he kept his mouth shut? As, indeed, any heterosexual-inclined boy should. Talking freely about your sexual proclavities is not worthy of an honorable man or boy.

      • John200

        Let’s go to the central issue in this discussion. Homo”sex”uality is not worthy of an honorable man or boy.

        • NormChouinard

          We see a different central issue. For me, all sexual acts outside of traditional marriage are the disorder.

      • NormChouinard

        I agree with this in principle. Is that not what the BSA statement quoted above affirms?

      • MarkRutledge

        I think we should all step back and realize that 14-year old boys obsessing about their sexuality reflects a serious problem to begin with. Perhaps society has difficulty raising boys to men because so few men had gone through the process, which is what makes this PC-driven decision so tragic. Society has lost one of the last bastions of authentic masculinity.

        • tedseeber

          If so, it lost it before I was born in 1970. I don’t know any 14 year old male human beings who do *not* obsess about sexuality. Previous to the 19th century, the common method of dealing with this was marriage, but the industrial revolution created an anti-family economic system that destroyed that possibility entirely.

          There is a reason why the age of consent laws in some governments are 12 years old.

      • JohnH

        As the policy states that sexual conduct by youth of scouting age is inappropriate, talking freely about their sexual proclivities is consider to be un-scoutlike behavior and can have them removed.

  • Donna Ruth

    It is incredible to me that what is overlooked repeatedly is the link between homosexuality and AIDS. The stats are compelling. In Canada we warn and legislate against riding bikes without bike helmets or boating without life jackets. Our cigarette packages are covered with warnings about the link between tobacco use and cancer. Yet, through legislation, we are teling our young people to freely enter into risky homosexual practices which might lead to disease and potential death. How can we reconcile that?

    I know it is a stretch, but has the BSA not considered that their blanket acceptance (and implied endorsement) of scouts who consider themselves to have SSA might lead to lawsuits from parents whose sons who contract AIDS while being associated with this scouting organization?

    • John200

      Dear Bono (Perhaps I am the only one who does not know and has to ask — are you a rock star/celebrity?),

      It is incredible to a faithful Catholic that the the burden of proof goes the opposite way. Here in the states, our homo”sex”ual perverts do not have to reconcile any evil with its effects; or support any assertions; or prove anything. They are presumed to be on the side of the angels, although the truth contradicts them (recall Sodom and Gomorrah, Lot and the angels and his daughters, …).

      Is it like that in Canada? I enjoy the Great White North, but I don’t like the politics.

      • Bono95

        I think I am intruding into a conversation that doesn’t concern me here, but I am a little confused by your opening sentence. Are you addressing Donna Ruth, whom it looks most like you’re addressing. Are you addressing the front man for U2, who is not anywhere in this forum to my knowledge, unless he’s Donna Ruth, which doesn’t make sense because he’s not Canadian, or are you talking to me? I am not a rock star, though my username is derived partly from the lead singer fro U2 and partly from my guardian angel’s name.

      • musicacre

        So….you like the politics of United States better? Hmm…..the sheeple and media together have upset the apple art in both countries, but the signs of sickness in the States is WAY more obvious than here right now.

    • musicacre

      This is true, otherwise, why would blood donations still be restricted in a number of ways to prevent AIDS from getting into the blood supply?

  • Dan

    You cannot remove the stigma that attached and expect legal prohibitions to remain in place.

    The law will always follow the culture. Once homosexuals were allowed to adopt, everything was going to follow, widespread cultural acceptance, nay, validation! And marriage as well.

    The “battle” is presently a joke.

    Think of it this way too…………….. Did not we accept priests not just as homosexuals, but flamers. How many times did we ourselves not listen to socialistic cheerleading by men whose voices and mannerisms should have prevented them ever being in a seminary, let alone a pulpit!

    We accepted them, excused them, deluded ourselves that it was all “tolerance” instead of what it was, convention, cowardice, and the tremendous fear of being smeared and ill-used as Anita Bryant was long before.

    And so now the Boy Scouts cave………….. well they held their portion of the line longer than did our own American clergy after Vatican II!

    They gave up their position after looking left and right and noticing that everybody else had already scampered off to the rear………….. I have more respect for them and their leadership than I do for our Catholic “leaders” of our schools, high schools and universities.

  • Marv Nieport

    The changes the BSA announced bring them into closer alignment with Catholic Teaching on sexuality. The Church teaches that being homosexual is not a sin, and that it is therefore wrong to discriminate against someone who has a homosexual orientation. SO, it is VERY GOOD that the boy scouts are affirming that a boy who is finding he has a same-sex orientation will be allowed to remain a boy scout. The BSA press release affirms that “any sexual conduct, whether heterosexual or homosexual, by youth of Scouting age is contrary to the virtues of Scouting.” What they are doing is exactly right. It represents what is challenging about the Catholic position on homosexuality, and why it is very hard for people to hear the Catholic teaching: We love and recognize that gay people and straight people are no more or less sinful, while proclaiming the truth that sexual intimacy belongs only in marriage. Sexual intimacy of any orientation anywhere else is a sin and will have bad consequences sooner or later. People hear that loving acceptance and truth, and equate it with articles like this, which are unimformed. This is the great challenge of our generation: to speak the truth in love, to be clear that we believe homosexual activity is wrong, but that the gay person is a child of God whom we love, who is no more sinful than anyone else.

    • tedseeber

      Hard to do when homosexual activists proclaim their support for gay marriage by vandalizing churches and sometimes committing arson. That turned me against their message far more than any teaching of the Church ever did.

      • musicacre

        Look at the classic attack on Cardinal O’Connor in NY many years ago, (at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, during Mass); it was the filthiest attack on record, and most aggressive.

        • tedseeber

          Yep, and that was the beginning of the end for me. Before that, I was for inclusion, “The Body of Christ Has AIDS” movement to care for the sick and dying, and a separation of Church and State in matters of marriage.

          I’m still for all those things, but I now have to admit to being a Catholic Bigot in their eyes, and it is sad.

          • Marv Nieport

            Nevertheless, Love is the response of Christ, even to such attacks. And while attacks have happened on occasion, the experience of most people is more equating the sin with the sinner. This is what we need to change. We must love, include, and respect those with same-sex-attraction, while not condoning behavior that the Church teaches is immoral. This 3rd way is the better option; much better than either wishing gay people would just stay in the closet or saying anything goes.

            • tedseeber

              The third way, though, has to include a condemnation of the tactics used by the homosexuals since bribing George Weinberg in the 1960s to introduce homophobia into the DSM with no actual data at all. It has gotten increasingly bullying and bad since then.

    • Marc L

      But that’s not what they did. “Open” homosexuality (FWIW) implies promotion and support of sinful behavior. Moreover, it is one that is especially confusing and troubling for both boys and their parents. At no point have the Scouts disallowed (though they may have discouraged) members with SSA, mainly because it is not publicly knowable, and because it can be held in check. They will now allow members who self-identify by their sinful proclivities. This is problematic.

      • Marv Nieport

        When temptations come to light, they can be managed and even transformed, particularly when a wise adult can provide guidance. If a scout feels he can’t tell anyone he’s gay, his temptations will fester in the dark. Temptation left in the dark grows into sin. You’re right to worry that there are people who will think this is a blanket acceptance of same-sex acts, but the alternative of wishing gay scouts would stay in the closet is worse for those scouts, and naive for the rest of us. Gay people exist. We can either pretend they don’t, or we can reach out to them and help them live a holy lifestyle. If we push them out, they will find another community to take them in, and that community will probably not challenge them to holy action.

  • poetcomic1 .

    “Hi, I’m your tent mate and I am proud that I like to put other little boy’s penises in my mouth!” Now what can possibly go wrong with that?

  • Pingback: Living Together Before Marriage - Big Pulpit

  • cestusdei

    BSA RIP

  • Magdalene

    Naturally it will not stop there. Homosexual leaders are surely next. And the Scouts will not ever again be what they once were–a place to learn virtue.

  • geoffreysmith1

    Simple, really. Any sexual advances from an openly gay Scout should be immediately denounced to the Scoutmaster, and the offending Scout’s expulsion from the troop demanded. The gay boys can join the Scouts if they so wish, but they keep their disordered condition firmly inside their pants – or else.

    • tedseeber

      At which point, the heterosexual doing the denouncing will be expelled for homophobia.

      • geoffreysmith1

        That’s bad? Good riddance to the gays, I would say.

  • ltroide

    Activist judges are ruining the United States. From Roe v. Wade to the recent Boy Scouts ruling, activist courts from the Supreme Court down have been ramming their liberal ideology down the throats of the majority of Americans, who are still moderate or conservative. I am sick and tired of gay “rights” activists, feminist activists, etc., etc., etc. When will the “silent majority” (a good phrase from a bad vice-president, Spiro Agnew) strike back?

    • Michael Paterson-Seymour

      But in Boy Scouts of America v. Dale the Supreme Court UPHELD the First Amendment right of the Boy Scouts to exclude homosexuals.

      It is their own national governing body that voted to change the rules

      • ltroide

        I stand corrected. But I still think that the US Supreme Court is skewed to the left in their decisions over the last few decades.

        • Michael Paterson-Seymour

          The ame court unanimously rejected the Administration’s argument and upheld the Ministerial Exemption in the Hosannah-Tabor case

  • The Texan

    Come on guys, get real. Can’t we agree that regardless of a person’s sexual preference, we’re all better off if that person lives (or tries) to live according to the Scout Law and has the ability to administer first aid, build fires, construct wilderness shelters, and navigate by the stars? If you’d just leave off with the Manichaeism this change would appear what it is: not that big of a deal. Get back to ministering to lepers.

    • Augustus

      Can you read? You’ve missed the point entirely. No one is stopping any youth from participating in the Boy Scouts if all they care about is learning to “administer first aid, build fires, construct wilderness shelters, and navigate by the stars.” Can you tell me what being gay has to do with any of this? If you can’t, then why should any teenage Boy Scout insist that the world know he’s gay? Because it has nothing to do with Scouting. It has everything to do with announcing your sexual preferences to the world so as to demand approval. That’s why the gay activists are pushing it. We know what they are up to. Why don’t you?

      • The Texan

        I don’t think anyone is demanding your approval. I think they are asking that you not exclude them for something that is, as you rightly point out in your response, tangential to the mission of scouting, and does not interfere with an individual’s pursuit of excellence through scouting.

  • FarFromLoozen

    “NAMBLA fingerprints all over it!” Ha !

    Pedophiles infiltrated the BSA soon after it’s beginning, the BSA knew it and said Nothing to Parents, said Nothing to anybody.

    The BSA kept records known as the “Perversion Files” for close to 100 years. It took a court order just recently to have those file opened. They found the BSA had started to destroy them, but not nearly enough to see a pattern. That Pedophile Volunteers and Scout Masters were NOT turned into Law Enforcement, but sent off to another region to continue to molest.

    If your child was ever endanger of being molested it started on day one, not because of a change in Policy towards Gay Teens wanting to Join the BSA.

  • Dude

    The answer to this is quit the boy scouts and join the Royal Rangers http://royalrangers.com/ from there site: The Royal Rangers program is an activity-based, small group church ministry for boys and young men in grades K-12. Our mission is to evangelize, equip and empower the next generation of Christlike men and lifelong servant leaders. We provide Christlike character formation and servant leadership development for boys and young men in a highly relational and fun environment.

    The Royal Rangers program is a cross-generational ministry that interconnects well with children, youth and adult ministries and fits easily into the fabric of pastoral vision and into the flow of church ministries. We affirm the male hands-on, interactive learning style by featuring an intentional discipleship journey for boys and young men based on their unique design, needs and interests. Every meeting, outing or service activity is designed to encourage boys and young men in their walk with God.

    We provide men with the tools to model Christlike manhood as they mentor boys on a Bible-based, Christ-centered, Spirit-empowered journey to maturity in the faith. Boys learn to study and apply what the Bible says about integrity, doctrine, biblical worldview, cultural issues and manhood. In addition, the Royal Rangers ministry molds boys into servant leaders, teaching them vital social, equipping, attitude, leadership and service skills.

    Groups

    The Royal Rangers program at a local church is referred to as an “outpost” and may consist of one or more groups. Each group follows a program of activities based on the interests and abilities of boys in that group. The links below provide details on the advancement system used in each group:

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