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Comments about ‘'We're here to serve all boys,' Utah Scout executive says’

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Published: Monday, May 20 2013 6:20 p.m. MDT

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I know it. I Live it. I Love it.
Salt Lake City, UT

I believe the Boy Scouts of America has been showing the true spirit of being good Americans in regard to this issue.

Upholding your beliefs
Showing respect to a crowd, even though you don't agree with that crowd
Trying to help all young men

These are admirable, American, and virtuous. The integrity of the scout character remains in tact. There are some who accuse the BSA of not actually showing respect. Of course, their very argument relies on "respect" meaning "full agreement" or "full adoption of my own opinion".

When we help others, show respect, and are firm in our belief and purpose, we have integrity. In fact, it perfectly defines the meaning of the word.

"If there is anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy, we seek after these things."

Aggielove
Cache county, USA

They should serve all boys, no matter if they think they might be different. The only exception is violent boys. There out.

I know it. I Live it. I Love it.
Salt Lake City, UT

Aggielove,

The concern isn't with people who are "different". It's never been about that. It's been about protecting boys. I don't want a teenage boy and girl in a tent together. I also don't want two boys who've had gay feelings and aren't sure about themselves in a tent together. I also don't want two admittedly gay boys in a tent together.

The qualifier in those scenarios isn't "difference" as the boy and girl aren't different from my own orientation. It's about preventing sexual activity in an environmental built to teach young men the values and skills to be good people. We need more of that, not more distractions from it.

Ironically, those bullying the BSA and demanding tolerance are flying their own intolerance flag pretty high. I tolerate their beliefs, but I don't agree with them. Where as they are bullying everyone else into agreement.

Who is it here that won't accept difference? It isn't the BSA.

Latuva
Spanish Fork , UT

This current news is a good approach. All of humanity have an unending combination of tendencies, predispositions, penchants, affinities, leanings, bents, traits, habits, orientations, and propensities. Some are DNA driven, some environmentally or socially nurtured, others are personal choice. Some violent; some innocuous. Some acceptable; some not. Some criminal, many not. They influence how we see life, each other, and self. We learn to live with and deal with all our lives. Some we 'get over' only to run into another set of challenges. Since its inception Scouting has been a forum, done well and not so well, to address these uncountable issues based on religious perspectives of its sponsors. That has been one of the key hallmarks of Scouting.

FatherOfFour
WEST VALLEY CITY, UT

From GLAAD:

"The Mormon Church sponsors the most Boy Scout troops in the country. They have released a statement that supports lifting the ban on gay scouts."

And my respect for the Mormon Church just went up a notch.

Jon W.
Murray, UT

As far as I'm concerned, as a Scoutmaster and LDS Young Men leader, the most important words in the proposed BSA resolution are these: "any sexual conduct, whether homosexual or heterosexual, by youth of Scouting age is contrary to the virtues of Scouting."

This doesn't leave a lot of "weasel" room for those who would rather give a lax interpretation of the "morally straight" clause of the Boy Scout Oath. It upholds the LDS Church's stance on sexual morality 100%. And it proves that the BSA is concerned about conduct, not about feelings.

As I tell anyone who will listen, none of us has control over what we are tempted with. We can only control how we respond to that temptation; that is, whether we accept it or reject it. And just because someone's tempation may be greater or different than someone else's, it doesn't make that person any more or less sinful, if they are able to exercise the self control to reject that tempation.

MGB
Saint George, UT

To FatherOf Four

The statement by the LDS church did not say it "supports lifting the ban on gay scouts". It only said that the church was pleased with the way the BSA was handeling the issue. It remains to be seen what will happen after the results of the voting.

raybies
Layton, UT

This clarfication could be a great boon to the boys who may not have a lot of positive examples when it comes to chaste/disciplined behavior models. I'm thinking of the problems right now in the armed forces regarding Sexual Assault, and how scouting could be a great model for how to encourage young men to respect sexual boundaries (no matter orientation) and redirect pent up attractions into quality activities and service to country and community.

Oatmeal
Woods Cross, UT

The boys are only about 11-14 years old. Older boys generally lose interest in Scouting. How in the world can gays be identified at that early age? Without very intrusive questioning, you often can't tell. Scouting has always had gays among the ranks of its youth. Just recognize that fact and move on. Teach all boys to live moral, productive lives and enjoy the outdoors.

FatherOfFour
WEST VALLEY CITY, UT

@MGB

"The LDS Church announced on Thursday that it would officially endorse The Boy Scouts of America's (BSA) recent proposal to change their anti-gay policies and allow gay youth members, but not adults, to join the organization."

Deseret News won't let me post the link itself, but it is available on the GLAAD site.

Scott3
Quiet Neighborhood, UT

I am surprised by the recent statement by The LDS Church. If the Christian Churches (ie Catholic, Baptist, LDS, etc) cannot beat this movement, they really should bow out gracefully. Young people are very impressionable. I do not hold anything against people who drink, smoke, and do drugs (as long as they do not harm others). I still respect them as people although I disagree with their choices. However, I am not going to expose my young kids by sending them into a bar or allow them to witness drug use. If my kids choose to do these things when they are older, then that will be their choice. Current laws back up my opinion as minors are not allowed in bars, casinos, or to be exposed to drug use.

By the same token, I do not think The LDS Church should have LDS Sponsored Troops while having OPENLY gay scouts attend. This will not work. Promoting sex of any persuasion does not belong around young people. If a "don't ask don't tell" policy or separate gay or church sponsored groups do not work, then the church should say thanks and bow out.

Brave Sir Robin
San Diego, CA

Of course BSA says "we're here to serve all boys"; they want the money so employees on the district level can continue to receive their six-figure salaries. Sure BSA is here to serve all boys....until your check bounces, and then we'll see how willing they are to "serve" you.

I know it. I Live it. I Love it.
Salt Lake City, UT

Jon W.,

well said.

FatherOfFour,

I appreciate that you are pleased with the LDS Church's statements on this. Although I thought it was interesting that your attitude changed. The LDS Church has always believed in showing kindness and tolerance of other human beings. While we believe God has given us a plan for happiness in the family, we also believe in respecting other people and their opinions.

The media represents the LDS Church very inconsistently and very inaccurately. We live in a world of blog-like reporting and perpetual opinion rather than simple presented information. People want that, so that's what people get. I'm not saying anything negative about it as much as I'm saying that how the media portrays the LDS Church is inconsistent, how the LDS Church has stated it's official position is not.

With that being the case, if your attitude has changed, even if only a little, I might suggest reading official statements rather than media reports. Michael Otterson stated the LDS position, gave points of disagreement and agreement, and affirmed our love and respect for all human beings. It's not what the media likes, but it's the truth.

RedShirt
USS Enterprise, UT

To "Scott3" the "don't ask, don't tell" policy would be bad for the BSA. What that will end up doing is to place boys in potentially harmful situations. By knowing that there is are a Scout is gay, the Scoutmaster can protect all of the boys in the troop to ensure that the BSA policy of no sexual activity is upheld.

Claudio
Springville, Ut

Re: Scott3

"By the same token, I do not think The LDS Church should have LDS Sponsored Troops while having OPENLY gay scouts attend. This will not work."

It seems to work fine for Young Men quorums, where the openly gay youth not only attend, but actively hold the priesthood. It also seems to work fine in bishoprics, where openly gay men can not only attend, but preside. Being gay does not necessitate that one engage in sexual relations with every person of the same-sex one encounters. Nor does it imply one is sexually active at all.

Rocket Science
Brigham City, UT

BSA’s proposed change upholds present standards and emphasizes inclusivness. The BSA has always accepted all youth who are committed to do their best to do their duty to God, country, fellow men, live up to the Scout law and who commit to keep themselves physically strong, mentally awake and morally straight. Morally straight encompasses a tremendous commitment to do what is morally right including; no “sexual conduct, whether homosexual or heterosexual, by youth of Scouting age” as it is contrary to the virtues of Scouting.

Same gender attraction is not the same as homosexuality and youth should not be advertising their sexual desires around the campfire or in other scouting activities. Any youth who has a same gender attraction as all scouts in all situations should be protected from any hazing, bullying or harmful/embarrassing initiation, BSA forbids it. A Scout Master is obligated to help scouts learn to do right, live the oath taken. Counseling on moral and repentance issuess however are left to ecclesiastical leaders and are confidential. I hope the 70 percent of leaders who say they will limit or stop their participation will continue to full-heartedly support BSA.

Pavalova
Surfers Paradise, AU

Let me see if I understand a couple of comments correctly. The site GLAAD, a site devoted to the promotion of the LGBT community has comments suggesting the the LDS Church will openly support gays in scouting? That makes sense...not.

The BSA will cave to political pressure and current reductions in corporate funding programs. Won't matter because the LDS church already has a back up plan. They always do. Do we not think that the church had had something in the works for when this day will eventually come.

If they don't cave now, they will cave later. Just a matter of time.

snowman
Provo, UT

Claudio: I doubt the church would put an openly gay man in the bishopbric.

Claudio
Springville, Ut

Re: snowman

Actually, they already have. We can't post links here, but it was widely reported as taking place in California.

ulvegaard
Medical Lake, Washington

The focus should be on the boys --- and disregard for any of the bi-laws should be addressed. Just because a boy is 'straight' does not give him license to be immoral and that should apply to everyone.

Leadership is a different issue entirely.

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