questionshow to handle the boy scout issue?

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Assess both sides of the situation. Weigh the benefits your children will gain from being Boy Scouts against the drawbacks of being a part of an organization with one belief you don't agree with.

It's also not a bad idea to discuss this with your kids. If the Scouts are really important to them, it may not be a good idea to pull them out. I have plenty of friends who were in the Boy Scouts growing up and are pro-gay now, so it's not like your kids are guaranteed to end up in complete opposition to other lifestyles.

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The BSA is a private organisation. They have their own codes and rules. As much as it saddens me, they can (and should continue) to choose who they allow in their organisation. Just as churches can and should choose who they allow to be married in their services.

Personally, I won't be supporting them in any way until this changes. If I had kids, I wouldn't want them involved in a group that's exclusionary based on orientation.

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I think that one "LGBT" question here per day is two too many. There are other forums for that IMHO.

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@captainsuperdawg: I asked someone else to back up their statement. Then, you gave data which doesn't actually back up their statement, then you started to argue with me about backing up assertions. I even RESTATED that I was referring to someone who IS NOT YOU.

Cripes... focus man, focus!

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@kmeltzer: So when I said "I don't think that the pervs really care about whether or not they're molesting a child of their own gender or a different one..." and then the rest of my response, wouldn't that be my opinion, backed by evidence to support it?

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Could somebody please close up Pandora's Box?? Sheesh! the evils and perversions that have now become the "norm"; how sad that the current generation has no sense of Right or Wrong; Good or Bad; Black or White; etc. Everything is now a grey abyss. There are no absolutes; each one decides (as if they are their own god) what is acceptable. Heaven forbid you disagree with them! You're labeled as a hate-monger; homophobe; or whatever label suits you for not following the herd of swine heading towards the cliff. How sad. May God grant you His wisdom and discernment before He returns.

End of sermon. You may now unleash your vitriol comments.

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Simmer... BSA doesn't allow openly gay men because they don't want to. Looking at what organizations tend to be the backers for troops, and its history, it's understandable...

And so what? There are plenty of other groups out there for everyone. Just because you can't be part of this particular one doesn't mean anything. I can't be part of plenty of groups because my heritage is Northern European, but that doesn't mean I'm going to go demand access, that's silly. There's still what, Boys and Girls clubs, youth coaching, etc., etc., etc.

And I'm sure our Canadian wooters would know more, but if I recall the Canadian Scouts allow both openly homosexual people to be leaders, AND both genders to take part.

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@captainsuperdawg: I stated an opinion.. which started with "I think...". An assertion is when you state something as fact, which is what was done, which is what I challenged.

Nice try, though.

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@kmeltzer: You're not making assertions?
"... I think it's more likely that a gay man who would molest will molest a young boy.. of which the Boy Scouts are comprised, which would be the actual context of the discussion. And, conversely, I'd say it's more probable a straight man will molest a young girl... which aren't in Boy Scouts."

I'm pretty sure that saying straight child molesters won't really molest girls is an assertion you haven't backed, and one that I've been refuting with my own evidence. All you're doing is saying that my evidence is crap because the sample size isn't big enough, when your theory isn't backed up by anything at all. I'm not asking you to prove me wrong, I want to see what you have in defense. This isn't a murder trial. There's no assumption that you're right until proven otherwise. It's more of a debate, where each side presents their arguments, backed up by proof. I want to see your proof. Where is it?

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@captainsuperdawg: Yes. Since, I'm not the one on here making assertions with nothing to back it up. You can't make assertions, then when someone says "back it up" start saying "no, you back it up." That's just stupid. If you say something, back it up.

If you tell me the sky is green, it's not my job to then show you you're wrong. It's your job to show me you're right.

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The politics of this issue are what should be "don't ask, don't tell," not the sexual orientation of the group's members. Think about it this way: your kids have been Boy Scouts all along for whatever reason you enrolled them; had the issue never come up, they would continue to be Boy Scouts, right? This new information shouldn't affect what they do there. Let them learn about the ugliness of discrimination some other way, in a more public environment like high school or college. Of course, if they ask about it, talk to them, but know that it could lead to questions about sex, which you may or may not be prepared to discuss. To pull them out of something they enjoy for reasons they may not understand doesn't seem like the right answer. Don't make them grow up before they have to.

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@kmeltzer: So, correct me if I'm wrong, but are you telling me to find proof that I'm right and you're wrong, when you have absolutely nothing to back up your theory that straight men are more likely to molest girls? Please, don't try to refute my sources when you have nothing other than an opinion to back up your claims. I'd like to see your evidence please. 175 may not be a good enough group for absolute proof, but it's a lot better than all the (lack of) evidence you've got.

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@captainsuperdawg: There is nothing here showing what @ohcheri asserts that "their sexual orientation has nothing to do with their fixation.". And, a sample of 175 is hardly a viable sample size for a study.

In fact, you'll have a hard time finding any real study on it. What you need to find is gender-on-gender then a breakdown of the molester's sexual tendencies. Or, even stats on openly homosexual (bi, whatever) offenders that did not molest a girl, vs those that did.

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Keep in mind that we live in a country that, until 1967, it was against the law in many states for couples of other races to marry. Now it's a non-issue but 1967 wasn't that long ago. Soon this will be a non-issue for all people and those who are flipping about this will look back in embarrassment that they were so worried about the sex lives of strangers.

I don't know why the Scouts, the government or any organization feel the need to take a stance on this. It's a personal, private matter.

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@kmeltzer: How about this article that shows in 175 convicted child molesters, none of them were shown to be exclusively homosexual. Mix that in with the fact that 1 in 6 males were sexually abused before they were 18 and it's easy to make the conclusion that there are a lot of "straight" men that molested boys. Also, in the first article mentioned, the fact is stated that most child molesters don't have adult sexual relationships, meaning that it isn't easily possible to classify them as straight or gay. Being "out of the closet" normally means that the person has been in at least one adult relationship with someone of the same gender, whereas, a person is thought to be straight unless proven otherwise.

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I guess I don't get it. Taking myself as an example: FTR, I am straight, married to a woman, have 4 children. At no time while I was involved with my son in scouts was there ever a situation when my preferences were explicitly made public. Never did I proclaim my sexual preferences, never did I publicly display any type of sexual behavior (e.g., PDA with my wife) or otherwise act in a way that could imply my orientation, nothing. Why would it be any different for anyone else there for the scouting? And given that why would the BSA's position matter on a practical basis (beyond the symbolic)?

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@ohcheri: No, that's not what I said, at all. You asserted that pedophiles molest based on access. You said that "their sexual orientation has nothing to do with their fixation." I asked you for stats on that statement, not that "gay" means "pedophile", as I said nothing even remotely of the sort.

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@dealseekerdude: You're saying that Sandusky had sex with small children because he wanted to make more gay men? I do not believe for one second that animal considered how his actions affected his victims.

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@kmeltzer: Research and statistics that "gay" automatically equals "pedophile"? Or "straight" automatically equals "pedophile"? I can't imagine anyone would actually believe that so I'm sure there are no studies on this subject. Logic and common sense would prevail in this case. A sexual predator is a unique beast and gay/straight has no bearing on their behavior, they are simply looking for an easy target.

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@captainsuperdawg: It's not really a matter of what you think, do you have any stats and research to back up that gay men will molest young girls just because they have access?

I'lll note John Wayne Gacy, a guy who played a clown at co-ed children's parties, certainly had access to young girls. Yet, he sexually assaulted and killed 33 young boys.

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@ohcheri: Can you show me the research and statistics to back up that claim? Thanks.

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@kmeltzer: I disagree completely. I don't think that the pervs really care about whether or not they're molesting a child of their own gender or a different one. All they care about is having access to the child. That's why a lot of them are active in things kids do like little league and other activities. Many of them are actually in heterosexual relationships, even though they prey on young boys.

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@kmeltzer @dealseekerdude Pedophiles prey on young children, their sexual orientation has nothing to do with their fixation on innocent victims.

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@dealseekerdude: Gay does not equal pedophile, pedophile does not equal gay. Plenty of straight-identified sexual predators out there--Sandusky among them. If you've been following, you'll know that he has a wife, with whom he presumably has sexual relations. Dude is straight, with an extra scoop of "pedophile" on top. (If he's not actually sexually active with his wife, then you can round him up to "closeted gay" if you want--and the BSA isn't objecting to closeted gay, only openly gay.)

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@mustardsquarepants: You mean to tell me there are "Millions of them"??? Yikes! Lord, help us!!

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The same issue is in the Girl Scouts. It is a personal choice whether you put your kids in or not. I didn't for several reasons. This issue was only a very small consideration. My daughter is a girly girl, and can't stand to have her hands or feet dirty. She went to one meet and said no! That was the main reason. My nephews are in the Scouts and love it. We have all talked about their (BSA) stance on several issues that I disagree on. What it all boils down to is your children will have to make their own decision one day. That day may not be today, but the more information and ways to do things, the better.

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@dealseekerdude: You can't really use 1 person to generalize millions of people. Just sayin'

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Oh, and to answer the original questions.. I'm pretty OK with any organization deciding what they want to have as members. I am OK with the right to NOT associate.

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@ohcheri: You said:

"1. Gay people are not any more likely to molest your child than straight people."

I don't think people are too concerned about a straight man molesting their young boy. I'd agree (although I haven't looked up the numbers) that a man can molest a child be them gay or straight at probably roughly the same statistical rate, I think it's more likely that a gay man who would molest will molest a young boy.. of which the Boy Scouts are comprised, which would be the actual context of the discussion. And, conversely, I'd say it's more probable a straight man will molest a young girl... which aren't in Boy Scouts.

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@susan11125: Simple. I believe that marriage is between one man and one woman. With that I believe that homosexuality is wrong.

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@dealseekerdude: For the record, I'm all for the BSA's policies against pedophiles as leaders or volunteers. That's what Sandusky was. The horrible things he did were because he was a creepy-ass pedophile, not because he was gay or straight or bi or whatever. I think you'd agree that all heterosexual men aren't vicious rapists, even though there are certainly some out there. We can't paint entire groups of people with the actions of a few.

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(cont...)

Parents also would feel better about their kids not being on camp outs with someone they can't or don't understand. Il know that being a homosexual doesn't make you a pervert, but there are some that do think that.

The BSA is heavily funded by Churches and religious establishments, and I can't imagine that most Christian organizations would be okay with allowing homosexuals in. It would result in loss of funding and ultimately cripple the organization.

I know, and most know that the worries are not legit in most cases, and the discrimination is unfair, but they've got to please the pocketbooks where the funds come from. I don't agree with the decision, but I can at least understand where they're coming from.

It's an easy decision. If it bothers you, then pull your kids out of scouting. If it doesn't bother you, then allow them to continue in scouting.

Don't let other people's opinions sway your decision. Make your own.

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As an Eagle Scout myself, and a participant in local Scouting events from time-to-time (my son isn't old enough to join yet), I can understand both sides of the equation.

I know that when I was an uninformed teenager, that we would have hazed a gay kid a lot more, so in a way, it's for their protection. I'm not saying that it's right, but hazing does happen, and sometimes discriminates against factors that individuals have little to no control over. I'm not saying that the BSA condones that sort of behavior, but it's nearly impossible to prevent all the time.

I can also understand that two homosexuals in the scout troop might be tempted to take advantage of a night alone in the woods and the BSA doesn't want that sort of trouble on it's plate. Once again, I'm not saying I support or reject the decision, I'm just suggesting that this might have been a factor in the legal aspect. I can't imagine such an event would be good for publicity.

(cont...)

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@ohcheri: Um, have you forgotten about Jerry Sandusky already? Especially your #2 statement? Seems he was a pro at doing that! Just saying ...

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@mtm2: Would you please explain why you support their position?

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I can see you are a thoughtful parent, and I value that. Too many are not.

It's not an easy problem. I'd talk it over with them, and explain your opposition to the policy, but I don't think I'd pull them out of scouting. Kids have difficulty enough in growing up. Let them decide this for themselves.

I find the position taken by those in charge to be contemptible, and indefensible. I'd say more (a lot more), but this is already headed in the direction of heated comments, and everyone downvoting everyone that they don't agree with, and I don't want to play.

You don't say the age of your boys, but you also didn't say cub scouts, so I'm guessing they're past that age. Give them a hug for me, and tell them that there's already enough hate and sorrow in the world. No sense adding to it.

Try to improve the day.

Myself, I'm hoping for some nice loganberries from the farmer's market this afternoon, so that I put up a few pints of jam. Summer in a jar; what's not to like?

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I have 4 sons - all Eagle Scouts.

I have held MANY positions over the years with Scouting.

I fully support their position.

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What a bone head thing to do (the scouts) it is already hard enough to get volunteers.
As a volunteer leader I also did the second in leader's duties, the parent volunteer work 'because everyone was too busy'

When I was a kid:
They pulled out female leader "because we were too old". IT WAS THE WORST THING EVER!
With her:
We did cool things that mattered.
She had well planned structured meetings.
She did not smell like alcohol.
The replacement was had none of the qualities we all quit.

To answer your question: perhaps telling someone up the totem pole that it is difficult to collect money with the recent changes.

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Some day people will wise up and understand that:

1. Gay people are not any more likely to molest your child than straight people.
2. Gay people to do not recruit/brainwash straight people
3. Unless you intend to have sexual relations with a person you have no business thinking about their sex life

It seems harsh to pull your kids from Scouts if that's something they love and enjoy, possibly you could ask them how they feel about the bigotry within the organization? Or you could ask yourself this...if the Scouts were racially biased would you pull your kids? They're already gender biased. Maybe there is another organization similar to Scouts that embrace diversity and are not prejudiced towards anyone.