I have been involved in Scouting the past 50 years. It's beyond me why the
Church continues to support Boy Scouts, other than if they were to pull out
Scouting would no longer exist. Most Councils around the country would be hard
pressed to replace leadership provided by Church members. I became disillusioned
with Scouts some 10 years ago when we were told when our Scouts blessed a meal
at Scout Camp the prayer needed to be generic as not to offend anyone. I
informed them that I was not about to tell my troop how they should pray.
Religious tolerance is a two-way street. When someone has been asked to pray,
those in attendance should allow that person to pray as they would normally.
Everyone else should be tolerant of that persons beliefs -- not the other way
"'Citizenship in the Nation' merit badge, which requires meeting
political leaders"Romney isn't a political leader.
He's a candidate. The BS 'honor guard' is a tacit endorsement of
Romney and is against the rules. The leaders should be dealt with accordingly.
Re: " Those scout leaders . . . should be asked or required to resign. And,
if this was an LDS sponored troop their bishop should release them . . .
."Spoken like someone who takes partisan political trickery WAY
too seriously. And who has never served as a bishop. Any bishop would LOVE to
have a scout leader as proactive as the ones in question, and would probably
release an enthusiastic nursery leader before these scouters.
@Mike in Cedar CityI see your point, but that's precisely my
argument. Our society is WAY too sensitive about these types of things. People
see these pictures and automatically assume the Church sponsors Romney.
Whatever happened to common sense? You're right in what you said -- the
problem IS in the eye of the beholder, because the beholder can't tell the
difference between a political endorsement and a casual outing by a scout troop.
The problem with our society is that people intentionally misconstrue things to
fit their political or personal agendas.@dwayneI disagree, it
shows how politically charged our society has become. Why can't the
pictures just be about some scouts who got to meet a presidential nominee? Why
does there have to be this debate about whether or not these pictures suggest
the Church is no longer politically neutral? We hang on every political
innuendo and are way too concerned about the "he said, she said" in
politics. Why can't we be happy that these youth spent their time meeting
a politician rather than playing video games or doing drugs?
Blue AZ Cougar. "If the Church wanted to endorse...." The problem is in
the eye of the beholder. I did not say that the Church either did or wanted to
endorse Romney, I said it could be viewed by some that way if this troop was
sponsored by the LDS church. You need to keep in mind who Ronney is and how
much money he contributes to the Church.True nO sign, just a big
picture of the scouts standing in fromt of Romneys campaign plan with big Romney
letters plastered all over it. This was misuse of the instittion to make a
political statement. And did those kids have any opportunity to opt out? Adn
if any did what price would they have paid for that?
Blue jeans?No scarfs?No Troop or National Flag Color Guards?Yep - a political stunt, shame of their leaders.
The scouts were merely working on their 'Citizenship in the Nation'
merit badge, which requires meeting political leaders. And the adult scout
leaders were there simply as drivers and to see to the boys were safe.What's the big deal, anyway?
@Mike in Cedar CityReally, it could be construed as an endorsement by the
Church? Seeing that picture, is that the message you get? Sounds like a
perception problem. Get real. If the Church wanted to endorse a candidate,
they're not gonna send a group of 5 teenage scouts to go greet him as he
gets off a plane. There was no violation of BSA policies here. I didn't
see any of those scouts holding a sign with Romney's name on it.
Dixie Dan -You forget who shunned who:President Obama
will make history as the first sitting president on a daytime talk show when he
visits with the ladies of "The View." But he'll be missing out on
another historic occasion -- the Boy Scouts' Jamboree marking the
group's 100th anniversary, right in the president's backyard.
The most cogent argument here was by Dixie Dan. Those scout leaders should ask
that question of themselves. And since they violated Scout policy they should be
disciplined to forstall others from violating rules. The should be asked or
required to resign. And, if this was an LDS sponored troop their bishop should
release them as this could also be construed as an LDS Church endorsement of
I didn't give it a second thought when I saw the pictures of Boy Scouts
greeting Romney. The recent statement by the BSA reminds me of how partisan we
have become. Last February Governor Herbert ordered state buildings not to put
up signs that said "Closed for Presidents' Day" because that would
include our current President. Instead he wanted "Closed for
Washington/Lincoln Day" lest somebody be offended. Isn't all this going
a bit too far?
Memo to BSA: Meeting a candidate for office at an airport as said candidate
deplanes does not constitute a "political" activity any more than
attending a city meeting or school board meeting (requirement for Citizenship in
the Community). Indeed, said meetings are clearly political in nature. Please
correct either the policy or the merit badge requirement to prevent a violation
of the policy as presently constituted.Complaining about this
non-event is absurd.
if only the scuts would have held the new obama flag.
and these (BSA) are the same people that are in the middle of a membership
donation drive? timing is everything.
Well, if the Boy Scouts do meet President Obama it won't be at Ft. A.P.
Hill, Virginia or any other federal installation because the BSA is now
prohibited from using military property for any of their functions even though
the BSA used Ft. A.P. Hill for generations for its National Jamboree gatherings
and the military liked that relationship and wanted it to continue. After all,
many of the military's best recruits come from the ranks of the BSA. No
matter, the BSA can no longer use military installations and it has nothing to
do with security. So a few great donors went out and purchased private land in
Virgina to replace Ft. A.P. Hill so that BSA national jamborees could continue
in that area because it is closeness to Washington, D.C. and other historic
sites. One of those donors was the Marriott Corporation. Don't be
surprised if another was Mitt Romney. And if so, it is entirely appropriate for
a few scouts to show up at the airport to greet him.
The Eagle Scout Award “I” earned was “fake” signed by
President Clinton, and it didn’t have any effect on my thoughts about
politics. The leaders made a mistake, it happens! The leader
wasn’t trying to brainwash the scouts. I trust these kids can think for
themselves when it comes to politics. They got an opportunity to meet someone
they will never get a chance to meet again, unless they have $25g’s
sitting around or are famous like JayZ.
Sounds like a case for the ACLU.
rE: UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC"Yes, asking people to obey the rules of
their organization is truly political correctness gone amuck."Is
that some reference to Obama and his instructions to the US Border Patrol to
look the other way while illegal aliens enter our country? Isn't it OK for
Boy Scouts to follow the example of the leader of this country?
I agree with NedGrimley's remarks.I would also like to see the
LDS church's split from the BSA as well. The BSA are a terrific
organization that are being bandied about as a political football. There are
bound to be decisions on an institutional level that are inconsistent with the
LDS Church's policies.
Hey Dixie Dan: "0" is the only President in the history of the boy
scouts who refused to go to the Scout Jamboree. He has disdain for anything
American. He was not in the US when he was young and when he went to Hawaii, he
was mentored and raised by communists and so of course Scouting was not part of
his history.I would certainly think that if he ever set foot in Utah the
Boy Scouts could go out and greet him, but I'm not sure they would be
welcome. Come on look up his history and don't just believe the msm
who are so in the tank for "0".I'm sad there is so much
criticism of our scouts having a civic's lesson.
@ Dixie DanThe real question is whether Obama will step foot in Utah.
He's already attacked the BSA for it's stance against gays serving in
its ranks. I'm quite sure there are at least a few troops who will meet
Obama somewhere in the country over the next few months. Our society is too
easily offended -- we're WAY too concerned about being PC than we are about
teaching our kids what is right and what is wrong. Encouraging children to be
involved, or at least interested, in politics seems to take a back seat to
whether or not they wore the right shirt for the occasion. Ridiculous!!
Between this story and the reaction to Romney's "47%" comment, I
can't help but think our society is too easily offended. Our society is
too caught up in being politically correct, being neutral on all issues, so as
not to offend ANYONE. To this I say "Humbug!"I understand
the BSA's policy and their response, but these kids did nothing wrong.
They weren't holding up any signs endorsing Romney, they didn't appear
at a rally chanting his name, they weren't going door-to-door handing out
fliers for his campaign, and they weren't giving him any money. They just
wanted to meet him. No harm no foul.
@Dixie Dan:"The unanswered question is whether they would have
also shown up for President Obama's plane."Of course they
would.But another unanswered question might involve kindergarten and
elementary school students being taught and performing pro-Obama songs at a
Texas School...'He’s Our Man, Yes We Can! mm mmm
mmmm.'We also wonder about Obama flying to his fund raisers in
our Air Force One jet, on taxpayer dollars.While we're at it...
perhaps the scouts should ask why Obama flaunts federal rules/laws, such as our
immigration laws.@UtahBlueDevil:"I love the lesson
being taught here.... if you decide it isn't hurting anything, well then by
all means violate the rules."I'd bet the leaders violated
traffic Rules (laws), such as speeding on their way to the airport, as well.
Some real teaching opportunities here, if you look closely.
In my opinion by raising this issue in Utah the Boy Scouts just lost huge
donations to the BSA to run their programs here in Utah. We all know who the
complainers are. They do not want Republicans seen in a photo op with Boy
Scouts. That plays too well in Utah. And it is not because there should be
neutrality or separation. That is just cover. It is because some groups would
never have the Boy Scouts out at the Airport anyway because of their hatred of
scouting. That is the real issue and the bottom line.If it was
truly about neutrality and separation then why did my son’s Eagle Scout
certificate that he just earned have the signature of Barack Obama on it? I say
remove all politician names from BSA certificates and let the President of BSA
sign them. There was nothing wrong with this group of Scouts going to the
airport. Once again the media is trying to make something out of nothing.
Who remembers the Democratic convention when a Boy Scout honor guard was booed
by the Democrats? Perhaps the Boy Scouts need more participation in political
events to regain civility of the political class.
Re: "Scouts greeting Romney violated policy"This is a small,
politically motivated tempest in a very small teapot.BSA has to
enforce it's poltical neutrality in order to maintain its IRS 501(c)(3) tax
exempt status -- particularly in an era in which BSA has become a target of
professional liberal haters over its stance on atheism and homosexuality.It has now done so, and is on record as enforcing the policy, which will
immunize it from the inevitable attack by radical LGBT activists and other
liberal hacks.Case closed. No criminal law was violated. No
intentional flouting of the 160,000-page IRS code. No overt BSA expression of
preference for one candidate over another.True, they won't be
appearing with Obama -- he would never have invited them in the first place.That's not because of his superior ethics, however, but because
failure to show hatred of BSA and its members would offend an important Democrat
radical fringe constituency.
Instinct Magazine has an August 2012 article titled "President Obama Comes
Out Against Boy Scouts' Ban On Gays." (Google "instinct
magazine" and "President Obama Comes Out Against Boy Scouts' Ban On
Gays" to see it.) Look at the photo that accompanies that article.The Boy Scout policy could easily be tweaked to allow these young men, even
while in uniform, to greet and be greeted by sitting and campaigning politicians
-- local, state, national, and international -- so long as the Scouts hold no
signs and make no other verbal statements.And both BSA officials and
professionals, BSA local and troop leaders, Boy Scouts themselves, parents, and
the public can simply adopt the mental attitude that even when in uniform, these
young men are not, either for themselves or for the BSA organization itself, in
any way either endorsing any candidate or making any political statement. They
are, instead, getting worthwhile exposure to what makes their governments, here
and abroad, worth being involved with.
This is NOT a breach of policy or protocol. It is an actual requirement of the
Boy Scouts in the Citizenship merit badge to go meet and talk with Political
Leaders. This is a GOOD experience for them to help them develop the concept
and idea of politics. What would have been breaking policy is if they would
have held up signs in their boy scout uniforms endorsing one candidate or the
other, which they clearly DID NOT DO! Shaking hands and being at a location
with political leaders meets a Boy Scout REQUIREMENT, and does NOT Endorse
anyone!Next time do some more research people, this is a NON Story
and I can't believe it made the newspaper or that anyone with logic or
reason would be denouncing this experience for those scouts!
Jim Dabakis for governor. the only lib that makes sense. thanks Jim.
Good! Let's hope this horrific breach of protocol causes the LDS Church
to, once and for all, break its ties with the BSA!
I disagree that they were just "props" for the candidates. We encourage
our scouts to take part in the political process, but meeting with someone at
the airport does not mean you endorse them.I understand the need for
the policy which is to prevent the appearance of political favoritism, but I
think it should be changed to allow scouts to appear in uniform at places like
this for both candidates.I personally dislike Obama. I think his
policies are very bad for the country. However; if I were invited to meet with
him at the White House or anywhere else, I would go. It would be an honor to
meet with the president, no matter who occupies the office.
@My2Cents: Sorry, but your post is just a little over the top. Their is nothing
in BSA policy that infringes on these young men's constitutional rights.
The BSA has every right to determine when, where and how their uniform will be
worn. I'm guessing you support their right to be exclusionary when it somes
to other things. Why then should they not be able to set policy about the
wearing of their uniform at political events?
@Sergio: No, the message here is that it is against BSA policy.
So is the message here: that Utah Republicans are a bad influence on Boy Scouts
demonstrating disrespect of rules and teaching them to be outlaws.
Let's hope these scouts, don't cause riots.
OK, if the scouts had vote for Mitt signs, that would have been one thing. They
are supposed to be involved, going to town halls, city council, etc.I think this blog is the one out of line. I believe even the very liberal
leaning new Citizenship in the Nation pamphlet, written by Harry Chatten Boyte
(a Pres. Obama supporter and aid) a required merit badge, would disagree with
Rick Barnes, especially his timing.Re: pamphlet, From the apparent
intentional confusion re: Democracy and a Republic, to contradicting the 10th
amendment prior to introducing it, to the flexible constitution that is amended
informally in broad ways. The lack of understanding and explanation of the
electoral college. Broad Implied Executive Powers.It is hardly
politically neutral. The timing of the complaints is just as bad.
There is no need to send warnings to scout troops who wave or actually just
shake a hand at someone while traveling to an event. If that were true. Why are
there scouts at Obama's events? Yes, I have seen scouts, and other youth
groups that also aren't supposed to be there. And they are actually
violating their bylaws. And they are holding signs. Why does he have soldiers
forced to stand behind him, when troops are not supposed to be a part of any
political events either, while in uniform? It is okay for Scouts to be a part
of this environment. They need to know about our system, and how to participate
in it. They get Merit Badges for stuff like this. They didn't have a sign
saying "vote for Mitt". They also didn't say, "to heck with
Obama." I am sure they would have done the same for Obama, as he has
allowed other scouts to do the same, without a fuss.
I went with thousands of scouts, in uniform, to see President Reagan speak at
the Salt Palace, a great thrill. My parents also took me to see President Carter
speak at the Tabernacle... I didn't get in, but I did get to shake his hand
afterward, as he walked out and greeted the crowd. That's not endorsement,
merely involment. I've been interested in the political process ever since.
It may have been nice for Matthew and his buddies to meet the Presidential
candidate, but they were nothing more than props to the candidate, which is what
is truly sad.
I see no harm or violation of the rights of these scouts. The BSA does have a
merit badge for community service and donating time to charity and other
community projects. Local police and fire department visits, UDOT road cleaning,
and rivers and water ways preservation. They also have a merit badge showing
respect and loyalty to being an american and duty to god and country and this is
also a meritorious gesture of respect by the scout leader.There are
many state and federal and city projects scouts participate in and every one
thanks them for their help. These scouts were not participation in any
particular violation of their oath to themselves and their country. If the BSA
rules are in conflict with the constitution and these childrens freedoms, then
the BSA is the organization in the wrong.The BSA is not funded and
should not be politically controlled to ban the practicing of scouts duty to
country and rights then the policy is out of touch with reality, these scouts
have every right to participate in their constitutional rights.Politics in the BSA has driven the BSA to stop scout participation in freedom
of speech and their rights.
They make a big deal of this at the same time they are asking for donations to
Friends of Scouting, to support the operating costs and professional scouters
salaries, for the Great Salt Lake Council? I may have to think about whether to
donate this year.
Just a reminder: Both Candidates have had scouts present at events the past few
Yes, asking people to obey the rules of their organization is truly political
correctness gone amuck. I personally see no real foul here at face value... but
the Boy Scouts has rules to protect itself, and if local leaders should decide
for themselves if they choose to abide by them, regardless if they agree with
them or not.Take the kids there next time as just a bunch of
families to support the candidate, and no one will care. Go there wearing the
uniform of an organization in violation of the bodies rules... that isn't
political correctness, it is just a disregard to the rules. I love
the lesson being taught here.... if you decide it isn't hurting anything,
well then by all means violate the rules. I assume these were church troops, so
what a wonderful message to teach these kids.... rules are subject to your own
judgement if you want to obey them.
You really don't have to look very hard to find someone who will be
offended by just about anything.Jim Debakis is right on this one.
It is right for the Deseret News and the National Scout leadership to comment on
what happened at the Salt Lake and Provo airports and to instruct people to be
cognizant of the message that kind of image sends to the populace. In this case,
the message was: certain Utah scout leaders aren't reading their handbooks
carefully . . . .
The unanswered question is whether they would have also shown up for President