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THE END OF THE BOY SCOUTS IN PHILADELPHIA
NewsWithViews ^ | June 2, 2003 | Hans Zeiger

Posted on 06/02/2003 6:39:40 AM PDT by fight_truth_decay

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To: fight_truth_decay; chainsaw
The 'funding' to the Boy Scouts should be mentioned. If the United Way pulls out they lose $ 85 mil a year (approx.)

The United Way drive to force the BSA to abandon its Supreme Court victory began the day after Lambda Legal Defense Fund (Evan Wolfson, lead counsel) lost its James Dale case. The United Way's posture reflects liberal boards and gay political pull. This is all about the gays, and it's all about access to the boys.

101 posted on 06/03/2003 3:26:15 AM PDT by lentulusgracchus
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To: demosthenes the elder
Yeah.
You should be glad you're not in these parts anymore.
Early spring, there's the gay pride flags for Pride Fest.
And I always think, "What other special interests groups would they fly banners for?" NAACP? Rainbow-PUSH? ACLU? World Worker's Party?
How about the NRA? The National Taxpayers Union?
In the last 10 years the population has declined 10%. The size of the Administration has increased 10%.
And when shown that CUTTING taxes could lead to growth and INCREASED revenues, the Council Member in charge of the hearings said, "I don't see it."
Brilliant.
Pray for Sam Katz. Fervently.
102 posted on 06/03/2003 5:19:21 AM PDT by dyed_in_the_wool (Relax. Don't worry. Have a homebrew.)
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To: KC_for_Freedom
I too support National's right to withdraw (refuse to renew is the usual mechanism) the charter of any unit, or any Council, that refuses to uphold National's standards. And I believe that it was absolutely esssential that the BSA won Dale. If BSA unit sponsors and parents couldn't choose their leaders according to any criteria they wished, without the government looking over their shoulder, then they couldn't exist. If the BSA opts for "local option", the individual units will still enjoy the right to select their leaders as they wish. This has already been adjudicated with regards to other protected classes such as religion. There was a Pack sponsored by a Catholic parish. The Pack Committee, with the support of the parents, selected one of the parents of the Cubs as the new Cubmaster. He was Moslem. The priest (in BSA parlance, the Institutional Head) overruled the Committtee, which he can do because the IH has to sign the charter application that has the list of all the leaders and all the Scouts on it. If he refuses to sign, there's no charter and no Pack. The parents took it to court! And the Church, with the full legal backing of National, won.
103 posted on 06/03/2003 6:31:17 AM PDT by RonF
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To: Rockitz
If the scouts declare that they are a church/religious organization, can they legally squelch this gay agenda that threatens to bury them?

What's threatening the BSA right now is not so much a legal challenge (which they've always been able to win in court), but a societial challenge being fought at the fund-raising and membership recruiting levels. Besides, they'd have a hard time doing this because 1) they accept Scouts and Scouters of all religious denominations, as well as those who have no membership in any religious denomination as long as they personally profess belief in a higher power, and 2) a large number of units (some 45%, I believe) are sponsored by secular organizations.

104 posted on 06/03/2003 6:34:46 AM PDT by RonF
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To: lentulusgracchus
BSA National has been forthright: No Gays, no way.

Then why do they keep putting that "avowed" qualifier in there? It means something, or it wouldn't be in there. What it means as far as I can tell (based on things like the Camp Yawgoog case) is that gays in Scouting are acceptable to National as long as they keep their mouths shut.

What we are discussing here is Blue America's attempts to overthrow the rule by issue creep and what used to be called "salami-slicing".

What we are discussing here is BSA's policies on gays, how the BSA has expressed it, and what they mean by that expression.

BSA National may never have admitted it in a court brief or a public statement, but the entire issue has been precisely about pederasty and the gay drive to get at the boys.

Now this is issue creep. The BSA explicitly states (as referenced upthread) that it's not about pederasty, and you say, "Oh, well, they're lying, it really is, now let's talk about that." Well, no. I take National at their word. If they're lying, then they've got no right to uphold themselves as the guardian of American morality.

I certainly am concerned about child molestation in my unit and in the BSA in general. But since there's plenty of it that has been committed by people who have never been demonstrated to have sex with people their same age and gender, maintaining the BSA's current membership standards isn't going to decrease it. What's going to decrease and eliminate it is if Scouters and Unit Committees take the BSA's Youth Protection policies seriously. If they do, then the sexual orientation of Scouters won't matter with regards to the danger of child molestation. Every time I read a story about youth being molested in Scouting, I see a violation of Youth Protection somewhere in the story. Except for one case, where a couple of leaders colluded, but the Unit Committee and parents should have caught that.

As far as the main body of your post goes, it's quite informative, but it concentrates on where you're trying to move the debate to, not where it is.

It seems to me, as an outsider, that BSA's best course of action now is to step up and 1) reaffirm the "no gays" policy that they defended before the Supreme Court, 2) explain that the policy is an integral part of the YP program, 3) restate the need for the YP program, and 4) state for the record that yes, the gay ban is about pederasty and the disproportionate tendency among gay men to participate in, or wink at, pederastic abuse of youths, inasmuch as it is visited not just on gay youth, but on all youth indiscriminately. ... It's high time that BSA grasped that nettle and pulled it up.

You are of course entitled to that opinion. But the BSA has so far always held the opposite, that the two are not connected. So this would be a big change in policy. My guess is that the information they get is that there is no connection, so they won't adopt this as policy.

There are gays in Scouting. There have always been gays in Scouting. There always will be gays in Scouting. National understands this. They also understand that Scouting is for boys, not for adults. If a straight son of a homosexual wants to be in Scouting, National accepts that the boy's parent will want to register along with their son, just like any other parent, and as long as the parent keeps quiet about their own sexual orientation, they'll accept them. For the homosexuals who want to join to recruit or abuse children, the exclusion of "avowed homosexuals" and the YP policies serve to deal with them.

You mentioned Blue America. There are a lot of Scouts in Blue America, probably about 1/2 of them. Scouting is not reserved to, owned by, or made up overwhelmingly of Red America. Both are members of the BSA in full and have equal rights to determine what Scouting means and how it will be run. Some Scouters would hunt down and expel every single gay or lesbian Scout and Scouter. Some Scouters would welcome them all with open arms. The BSA needs to find a way to accomodate both parties, and their current policies are an attempt to do so.

105 posted on 06/03/2003 7:03:40 AM PDT by RonF
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To: lentulusgracchus; fight_truth_decay; chainsaw
Actually, there is no United Way drive to de-fund Scouting on a national basis. What you are seeing is that UW chapters on an individual basis are editing their anti-discrimination statements to include sexual orientation. The number I've seen recently is that about 50 out of the 1600+ UW chapters in the U.S. have done this and have on that basis decreased or eliminated funding to local Councils. Some have shifted their funding from the Council's traditional programs to their Learning for Life programs. But there's no national drive to do this on the part of UW, it's a reaction of individual UW chapters to pressure from other organizations and people.
106 posted on 06/03/2003 7:39:40 AM PDT by RonF
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To: mrustow
as I have been corrected it is GSUSA.
"I've heard that GSA has been taken over by lesbians. Any truth to that claim? "

I don't know about being "taken over" as you say, but it is my understanding the they have endorsed the homosexual lifestyle as being a "normal" lifestyle.

While I do believe that consenting adults are free to engage in any sexual activity between themselves that they want to, it becomes my business when they try and teach my children that it is "healthy and normal". That is why we withdrew.

107 posted on 06/03/2003 7:41:57 AM PDT by RRWCC (Even under a good king, a subject is still a subject.)
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To: mrustow
My understanding about lesbians in the GSUSA is this:

1) The GSUSA takes no position pro or con about the sexual orientation of their leadership. They do state that it's their policy that GSUSA leaders should not discuss or demonstrate their sexual orientation, or sexual orientation in general, with their Scouts.

2) The rumor is that there are a lot of lesbians in the GSUSA professional ranks. That is rumor, however, not established fact. And those spreading the rumor often have specific anti-GSUSA agendas to push.

There are two international organizations that most (but not quite all) national Scouting movements belong to. The one for Girl Scouts (or, as they are called in some countries, Girl Guides) is the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts, a.k.a. WAGGGS. The one for Boy Scouting and associated movements is the World Organization of Scouting Movements, WOSM. Neither WOSM nor WAGGGS take a position of any kind on the acceptability of homosexuals as leaders. That is left to the national movements.

Of course, back when these were formed, there was little question that homosexuals were NOT acceptable as leaders, and that it didn't need to be stated. But over the years the question has come up more and more frequently. WAGGGS and WOSM continue to leave the question to their member movements.
108 posted on 06/03/2003 8:42:27 AM PDT by RonF
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To: RonF
....["avowed homosexuals"] means something, or it wouldn't be in there. What it means as far as I can tell (based on things like the Camp Yawgoog case) is that gays in Scouting are acceptable to National as long as they keep their mouths shut.

No, it means that National thinks they can't (or in some Councils, as you point out, won't) do anything legally about gays who don't come out. The practical problem, then, is that you wind up waiting for tacitly gay Scouters to come out in a tent. You undermine both the BSA's position on "avowed" gay scouters generally and the Youth Protection program by winking at closeted gays and accepting the "there are always gays around" argument as a reason for acquiescing in their participation in Scouting, pace National's James Dale brief. That's called relaxation. Rudy Giuliani cleaned up New York with de minimis policing, not with the relaxarian policies of his predecessors. "There's always a thief" -- yes, indeedy, and that's why you always chase him and collar him and never let him slide.

You also introduce cognitive dissonance, which countercultural advocates are perfectly happy with but which is damaging to the coherence of the "morally straight" message of Scouting, when you strongly imply -- or even explicitly state as the case you cited shows (with which I'm unfamiliar, sorry) -- that "avowed" gays who are honest about their orientation must be expelled, but that closeted gays who hide their orientation from National can be rewarded with continued participation. Not a very straight formulary.

Some other thoughts occurred to me when I read your post, but I'll save them for later, and more thought. Thanks for the reply.

109 posted on 06/03/2003 8:42:06 PM PDT by lentulusgracchus
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To: lentulusgracchus
No, it means that National thinks they can't (or in some Councils, as you point out, won't) do anything legally about gays who don't come out.

That's what it means as far as you can tell. Neither you nor I have been in on the Relationships Committee discussions. And it's not a legal matter; the BSA has demonstrated quite well that it can toss anyone out if they wish.

The practical problem, then, is that you wind up waiting for tacitly gay Scouters to come out in a tent.

Meaning what? That somehow gay Scoutmasters are going to find a way to flout youth protection guidelines that other Scouters can't? Don't forget that there have been molesters with either wives or no adult attachments in Scouting. If you read the stories, molesting a child in a tent is never the way these things happen.

I keep seeing people thinking that gay child molesters are going to flood the BSA. They're not. Unit Committees are not going to sign up a bunch of strangers with no kids in their units as leaders. They're going to do what they do now and sign up parents. And if they're gay, they're going to watch them even more closely than usual (the usual being pretty closely to begin with). And then there's the fact that when you're out in the woods, most of the adult leaders are heterosexual males and have axes at hand. Every time we've gotten a new leader out with us it's been made clear in one way or another that a child molester will leave the campsite in an ambulance, not a squad car. I imagine it's the same in most units.

You undermine both the BSA's position on "avowed" gay scouters generally and the Youth Protection program by winking at closeted gays and accepting the "there are always gays around" argument as a reason for acquiescing in their participation in Scouting

I'm not acquiescing to their participation because I think it's inevitable. I'm accepting the fact that gays have been, are, and will continue to be positive contributors to the BSA, and that this can continue as long as present BSA policies are followed.

In fact, if you read the first sentence you wrote, it's you who are saying that it's the BSA that is taking the passive acquiescient approach. I'm not saying that. I'm saying that they are deliberately taking a positive approach to accepting homosexuals under certain conditions which ensure that their contributions to their children and their community will be positive within the BSA program.

You also introduce cognitive dissonance, which countercultural advocates are perfectly happy with but which is damaging to the coherence of the "morally straight" message of Scouting, when you strongly imply -- or even explicitly state as the case you cited shows (with which I'm unfamiliar, sorry) -- that "avowed" gays who are honest about their orientation must be expelled, but that closeted gays who hide their orientation from National can be rewarded with continued participation.

An argument that is often advanced by gays who want to be able to be "avowed" and still be in the BSA. The concept here is that discussions of sexual orientation belong in the church and the family, not in a Scouting unit. Since the vast majority of people believe that homosexuality is a poor exammple for their children, gays in Scouting must not set that example. Most people think that drinking is a poor example for their children, so drinkers can't drink in front of their children in Scouting (another stricture, by the way, that is limited in Scouting worldwide to the BSA and the Moslem countries). But that doesn't mean that you can't drink on your own time. Just don't do it, or talk about it, in front of the kids. If drinkers can't live with that, stay out of the BSA. If homosexuals can't live with that, stay out of the BSA. How often do we see people state here on FR and elsewhere, "Be gay if you want, but we really don't want to have to hear about it all the time." The BSA is taking the same attitude, specifically because it is a poor example.

Again, the BSA puts the word "avowed" in front of "homosexual" every time they use the word, there's got to be a reason. Obviously, we differ on the interpretation of why it's there and what it means. And so now anyone who's followed this thread this far sees two different interpretations. I've often wondered why National doesn't define what they mean by "avowed". I am convinced that in part you're right; the BSA wishes to leave wiggle room for the local Councils to interpret it. Thus, Chicago Area Council might (this is theoretical, I have no idea of the actual situations) not object to someone who is privately known to be gay but never brings it up in Scouting, doesn't have his boyfriend drop him off in the parking lot and give him a big kiss before campouts, etc. Whereas Salt Lake Council might suspend someone or request a Unit Committee to investigate on the basis of rumors.

N.B. The Camp Yawgoog case happened in 1998 or 1999. Camp Yawgoog is in Rhode Island, and is one of the larger and better run BSA camps in the U.S.A. There was a young man working there who was rumored to be gay (not on the basis of anything he did at the camp). The Camp Director asked him point-blank if he was gay, and the young man answered "Yes." The Camp Director fired him on the spot. He appealed to the local Council. Said local Council determined that "don't ask, don't tell" had been violated by the Camp Director, and reinstated the young man with back pay. National confirmed the judgement and the result. Unlike the military, the BSA actually follows "don't ask, don't tell". You can look this up on the net. While most of the references you'll see are on the usual suspects' sites, you will find it on www.tompaine.com as well. The actual link is up-thread in one of my postings I think.

110 posted on 06/04/2003 6:25:58 AM PDT by RonF
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To: RonF
[You, quoting me] No, it means that National thinks they can't (or in some Councils, as you point out, won't) do anything legally about gays who don't come out.

[You, replying] That's what it means as far as you can tell. Neither you nor I have been in on the Relationships Committee discussions. And it's not a legal matter; the BSA has demonstrated quite well that it can toss anyone out if they wish.

We needn't have sat with the BSA in its councils you refer to, in order to perceive their upshot. "Can't" or "won't" are the only two alternatives that would lead to an outcome such as that which you outlined for the Camp Yawgoog case.

Thank you for taking the trouble to post the details; I metasearched for it using "tompaine" as a filter and came up with this pro-gay article by Patrick Boyle, cited by Tompaine.com as a writer for Youth Today who, given his polemical bias in favor of the gay agenda, perhaps oughtn't to be writing for youth:

http://www.tompaine.com/feature.cfm/ID/3650

Boyle uses the bandwagon fallacy to sum up his argument, which is disguised as dispassionate discussion, by parading all the non-religious-based youth-oriented organizations that have taken the liberal "Gay is Okay" pledge in one form or another.

The problem is, if gay is okay, why isn't pederasty? It's just another kind of love. </sarcasm>

Seriously, these orgs are being led to the trough one step at a time. Eventually, we'll see open ped predation in these outfits, and other adults in the organization will be asked to acquiesce in the name of......something or other. Whatever.

The point is, that if you think the denouement will be bad, then you have to object now, while it's relatively easy, because believe me, if you think these guys have been tough on BSA up to now -- taking them to the Supreme Court, going to United Way contributors to interfere with funding, going to municipal and county governments to interfere with Scouting access to public facilities -- then you haven't seen anything yet. Later on they will impose a price on you personally that you cannot accept, for failing to go along with what they want, to which what you want is irrelevant.

Or do you doubt that?

I realize that this is the "slippery slope" argument, and that unsupported it is a kind of fallacy of distraction: but I would adduce the treatment that Anita Bryant, Laura Schlessinger, Andrew Sullivan, and other lightning-rod opponents and, in the case of Sullivan, doubters have received, and to the unfair treatment of the subject in a totally committed media campaign on behalf of HRC, as indicators that what I am telling you is not misleading, is not a fallacious distraction, and is in fact a fair prediction of what BSA will face if it continues to toe its own line in the faces of these politically potent cabalists.

However the milk got spilt in the Yawgoog case, properly or improperly, BSA National is now on the record with a person who is globally known to be a practicing homosexual working on staff. You will perhaps disagree that this is a capitulation of the principle that BSA took to the Supreme Court in James Dale. But this suggests to me that BSA National, in supporting the Rhode Island Scouters in their determination that the gay man should be reinstated with back pay, foresees the same difficulties for the organization as a whole, and has begun to knuckle under.

[You, quoting me] The practical problem, then, is that you wind up waiting for tacitly gay Scouters to come out in a tent.

[You, replying] Meaning what? That somehow gay Scoutmasters are going to find a way to flout youth protection guidelines that other Scouters can't? Don't forget that there have been molesters with either wives or no adult attachments in Scouting. If you read the stories, molesting a child in a tent is never the way these things happen.

You are responding to my figure of rhetoric, not the central question. The central question being, whether acquiescence in the presence of gays amounts to "game over".

You can't hide behind a fig leaf of "avowal" forever. Sooner or later, BSA has to come to grips with central issues of whether actual atheists and sexual deviants should be allowed in Scouting. If enough gays wind up involved in Scouting, then it won't matter whether "avowal" is involved or not.

I keep seeing people thinking that gay child molesters are going to flood the BSA. They're not.

I respectfully disagree, on the evidence of the ancient Greek gymnasia, which had numbers of erastai hanging around the boys while they exercised and played ball, trying to pick them up. That is why Greek and Roman schoolboys had pedagogues. This will become a significant social headache in dimensions I think you fail to foresee, if society fails to exercise its healing and self-protective powers now. The gays must fail to get over BSA on this issue.

I think you are concentrating on the often-discussed "capture the flag" dimension of James Dale. Evan Wolfson of Lambda Legal Defense Fund, who has been in court all over the United States trying to get a state supreme court to decree that homosexuals may marry, in order to invoke the Full Faith and Credit Clause of the Constitution against states which soundly reject the idea of "gay marriage", took BSA to the Supreme Court to force BSA National to take the pledge. They wouldn't, and they defended their rights before the high court, in a case Wolfson had forum-shopped through the compliantly liberal New Jersey supreme court. I have agreed, and I still agree, that his primary motivation at that point -- this was several years ago -- was to compel the public moral endorsement of homosexuality by a premier American institution. But the reason that BSA has included homosexuals in the ban on participation, rather than linked to the moral dimension through the atheism argument that BSA offered the New Jersey court and SCOTUS, has -- as I've insisted to you and you've insisted I'm wrong -- always been based in concerns about pederasts. Citing the Boyle article I searched out (but you tell me if he's trying us on polemically),

Right from the beginning the BSA, just like the Scout Association in England, found that its troops sometimes attracted men who should not be around boys. By 1911, one year after its incorporation, the BSA developed a "Red Flag" list of adults who had been kicked out of Scouting for not meeting the organization's "standards of leadership." People were banned for a variety of sins, such as criminal convictions, public drunkenness, and stealing funds from troops. Over the decades, the biggest single reason for being banned from Scouting was child molesting.

To the BSA, it seemed logical that preventing gay men from becoming Scout leaders was a way of preventing those men from having sex with the Scouts. And the churches weren't the only ones to back the BSA on this: it is clear that most Scout parents, even those who profess a "live and let live" philosophy toward gays, feel uncomfortable with the idea of having their sons led by gay men. Combine that misdirected fear with the fact that a number of families sued the BSA in the 1970s and 1980s for sexual abuse by Scout leaders -- costing tens of millions in lawyers' fees and settlements -- and you have strong support for a ban on gay leaders. (The BSA has subsequently acknowledged in its literature that gay men are no more likely to abuse children than are heterosexual men.)

But even gay youth were not welcome: a Scoutmaster's handbook from the early 1970s discussed sexual experimentation among boys in troops, warning against "the practices of a confirmed homosexual who may be using his Scouting association to make contacts."

Boyle's canard aside about "misdirected fear" (he wrote before the Catholic Church's scandal broke, but he had to know he was uttering a roorback even then) and his crack about the BSA's literature acknowledging that "gay men are no more likely" (they are more likely, the stats are in), it would certainly appear from his cites and quotes that youth protection has been the actual motive for the gay ban all along, in silent partnership with the "morally straight" argument.

It remains for me to puzzle why, as you have pointed out and demonstrated, the BSA National didn't cite the YP motive at the same time as the moral dimension, when the Dale case went to the New Jersey courts, and why they didn't consistently make that part of their argument.

True, they were trying to emphasize the moral charter and asserting their right, and the sponsoring organizations' right, to answer for the moral impress of Scouting in preference to adventitious court claimants. But why didn't they use both arguments, particularly since the issue in future will be fought over YP, and since YP is clearly the grand prize as far as Scouters and parents are concerned?

111 posted on 06/08/2003 3:11:14 PM PDT by lentulusgracchus
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To: RonF
Unit Committees are not going to sign up a bunch of strangers with no kids in their units as leaders. They're going to do what they do now and sign up parents. And if they're gay, they're going to watch them even more closely than usual (the usual being pretty closely to begin with).

Ron, that won't be enough, if the gays win a court case. Or if National gives in on gays in the organization. Then the question becomes, okay, gays are okay and gays are in.....now, why shouldn't boys be boys with the other boys? You can probably salami-slice the argument as well as I can, and you know where they'll go with it: they want a toll of boys, and BSA is a good place to go get them.

And then there's the fact that when you're out in the woods, most of the adult leaders are heterosexual males and have axes at hand. Every time we've gotten a new leader out with us it's been made clear in one way or another that a child molester will leave the campsite in an ambulance, not a squad car. I imagine it's the same in most units.

If you are unwilling, for reasons of civil rights and your own conscience, to keep sexual deviants out of Scouting and away from the Scouts when the law is on your side, how and why would you be willing to go the distance with an axe in your hand, but not the law? I would personally hope and pray that you have the sand in you to protect your charges, but honestly, it sounds like some of the things that Second Amendment enthusiasts say when they're starting to feel desperate. Their problem being that, if they can't carry the argument now, their enemies will be all the hungrier to finish them off later, and if there's a lot of rough stuff, fine, the bad guys'll love it. Especially with the police and our highly-trained Army carrying their water for them.

I'm not acquiescing to their participation because I think it's inevitable. I'm accepting the fact that gays have been, are, and will continue to be positive contributors to the BSA, and that this can continue as long as present BSA policies are followed.

I think that's an accommodation on your part, which I do not see reciprocated by any accommodations on the part of the other side. I've never heard any of the gays on Salon "TableTalk" make conciliatory noises about, "well, gee, yeah, that'd be a problem -- we'd have to work extra hard to make sure that, if gays were accepted in the BSA program, none of them made inappropriate overtures, because that would be bad and morally malum in se". Ever see one of our gay interlocutors post anything like that, Ron? I haven't.

In fact, if you read the first sentence you wrote, it's you who are saying that it's the BSA that is taking the passive acquiescient approach. I'm not saying that. I'm saying that they are deliberately taking a positive approach to accepting homosexuals under certain conditions which ensure that their contributions to their children and their community will be positive within the BSA program.

Ron, I think you're there. If you really believe that, it's game over. They've won in your mind already.

[You, quoting me] You also introduce cognitive dissonance, which countercultural advocates are perfectly happy with but which is damaging to the coherence of the "morally straight" message of Scouting, when you strongly imply -- or even explicitly state as the case you cited shows (with which I'm unfamiliar, sorry) -- that "avowed" gays who are honest about their orientation must be expelled, but that closeted gays who hide their orientation from National can be rewarded with continued participation.

[You, in reply] An argument that is often advanced by gays who want to be able to be "avowed" and still be in the BSA.

You'll hear it again, too, when Evan Wolfson stops by to clean up the details of his victory from within.

The concept here is that discussions of sexual orientation belong in the church and the family, not in a Scouting unit. Since the vast majority of people believe that homosexuality is a poor example for their children, gays in Scouting must not set that example. ....If homosexuals can't live with that, stay out of the BSA. How often do we see people state here on FR and elsewhere, "Be gay if you want, but we really don't want to have to hear about it all the time." The BSA is taking the same attitude, specifically because it is a poor example.

Why should homosexuals respect your opinion on that point, if they've already won the argument? That's like telling kick-robbers that they'd damn well better not damage Grandmother's crystal! Come on, Ron -- they won't listen to that. They're a lot more focussed than you seem to be giving them credit for. If they won't listen to you now, when the Supreme Court is on your side, why would they pay any attention to you after you've capitulated what you'd won? --which was the right to say that gays can't participate in Scouting?

Again, the BSA puts the word "avowed" in front of "homosexual" every time they use the word, there's got to be a reason. Obviously, we differ on the interpretation of why it's there and what it means. And so now anyone who's followed this thread this far sees two different interpretations. I've often wondered why National doesn't define what they mean by "avowed". I am convinced that in part you're right; the BSA wishes to leave wiggle room for the local Councils to interpret it.

I think it was because their legal team felt the need not to appear to be hot-eyed inquisitors and persecutors before the courts. It was a defensive tuck in their PR and JR (judicial relations) armor.

Thus, Chicago Area Council might (this is theoretical, I have no idea of the actual situations) not object to someone who is privately known to be gay but never brings it up in Scouting, doesn't have his boyfriend drop him off in the parking lot and give him a big kiss before campouts, etc. Whereas Salt Lake Council might suspend someone or request a Unit Committee to investigate on the basis of rumors.

Enter Act Up. Why should the love that dare not speak its name, speak it just as loudly in Scouting as anywhere else in American life? Who are you, having mooted your argument to SCOTUS by allowing gays in Scouting, to say that they may not love as passionately and as loudly as anyone else? You heterosexist, you!

If you go there, you're done, Ron. They're way ahead of you. You can stick a fork in BSA if you go the "discretion" route: gays are a hell of a lot better and sneakier at playing that game than a bunch of well-meaning straights will ever be. If you allow nuance and wiggles into the policy, they'll rape you. Game over.

112 posted on 06/08/2003 3:43:06 PM PDT by lentulusgracchus
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