Boy Scouts survey seeks feedback on ban of gay Scouts

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  • haggie Visalia, CA
    March 19, 2013 1:22 p.m.

    Midwest Mom, very good question. Maybe the answer is no gay leaders and don't ask don't tell on the scout.

  • haggie Visalia, CA
    March 19, 2013 1:21 p.m.

    Morality or not? That is the only question. If in fact living a homosexual lifestyle is moral, then scouts should let them in and give them pink badges. If in fact it is not, then they can not join nor can they lead.

    If BSA decides that morality is determined by the winds of change, then in my opinion the churches that think morality is still Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve, they should jettison the BSA and let the LBGT support them.

  • Midwest Mom Soldiers Grove, WI
    March 17, 2013 10:22 p.m.

    If you don't allow the gay scouts to join, then where will they find good, male role models?

  • HS Fan Salt Lake City, UT
    March 17, 2013 10:04 p.m.

    You don't speak for all LDS parents and I wonder how may actually share your view.

  • Elcapitan Ivins, UT
    March 17, 2013 6:56 p.m.

    Scuting will be fine in LDS hands. It is still the best program avaialable to support the LDS Aronic Priestoon proglram. Young potintial gays are hardly identifiable at scout age..let it go. Leaders are carefully checked out to eleminate potential problems also. Looks like the active gay community has the National Councel on the run however. Too bad. About the money, pinch the pennies and dollare to go into your scouting programs and make the professionals sweat for wheat they get.They are overpaid. Do not buy into every money scheme they throw out.
    Just say NO THANKS.

  • roberto Moses Lake, WA
    March 17, 2013 8:43 a.m.

    I'm not a scouting fan by any stretch. I believe it helps the young boys that want to be in it but it isn't for every young man. In fact those who don't want to be in it are a pain for the the leaders and distraction from the intent of the program. Having said that, I feel that this is more of a political issue that a sexual orientation issue. Let them be scouts. I don't care. Just quit shoving it down my throat what your sexual preference is. In most cases you aren't picked on or not bullied. And you wouldn't be bullied or picked on at all if you wouldn't make it a central issue in your life. Political correctness con a muck, and will destroy scouting like everything else. Ahhh I feel much better.

  • bdckpakccd Plano, TX
    March 17, 2013 7:35 a.m.

    Leaving the decision to the chartered organizations leaves them open to lawsuits over the issue, plain and simple. The defense against these lawsuits will be very expensive, regardless of the outcome. The BSA is caving to corporate sponsors, and I'm not sure why. They already lost Levi Strauss and Wells Fargo years ago over this issue and changing the standards was not considered then. Where is the "morally straight" standard for the Executive Board?

  • snowman Provo, UT
    March 16, 2013 7:46 p.m.

    People, just because a person is gay, doesnt make them a child molestor

  • BigCougar Bountiful, UT
    March 16, 2013 3:54 p.m.


    Don't you pay attention? The LDS Church doesn't discipline members who have Same Gender attraction. They reach out to and embrace those members. Its when they choose to violate covenants they've made with regards to acting on those attractions that they are subject to church action.

    If a YM in an LDS Scout troop tells his Bishop he has Same Sex attraction but he is still living a Morally straight life then he will be fine.

  • wYo8 Rock Springs, WY
    March 16, 2013 9:05 a.m.

    First it was jokes about gays, then the question is he gay. then the coming out of the closet. Now it is cram it down our throats. Seems like they have been using the line upon line concept really well. Crack this door open and wait and see what will be thrown at the church. just look back at prop 8 in california. In 1964 a russia leader told then Sec. Of Agriculture Elder Benson (President Benson) that America would be destroyed from within. he asked why because the american people are so gullible. It's one thing to be gay and another to have it crammed down our throats. Kids at school can't even use the word gay in its proper form without being wriiten up.

  • Jack Aurora, CO
    March 15, 2013 10:34 p.m.

    @ San Diego,
    You might be mistaken in what your first job is. As Scoutmaster in an LDS-chartered troop, your job is the same as a Scoutmaster in a non-LDS chartered troop; that of teaching the boys to run the troop, to make decisions and to make sure the Scouting program is followed. Being a Priesthood holder in addition to that just helps you recognize who the real leader is: the SPL. The one with the keys makes the decisions. Don't confuse your Scouting position with your Church position. You serve in the one to teach, coach, mentor and support. You have the other to make sure that the righteous principles are shown to be the same as in Scouting. When you use them both to get the boys to lead and make decisions, you succeed and so do they.

  • pumpkin Huntington, Utah
    March 15, 2013 8:06 p.m.

    The Assembly of God has the Royal Rangers. LDS could do similar.

  • twspears6007 Bakersfield, CA
    March 15, 2013 2:24 p.m.

    San Diego Chargers fan. You missed one important fact the Church has firmly stated that active Homosexuality is a sin the message could not be more clear. The statement that the LDS Church openly accepts the acts of Homosexuality is a untrue. Please reread your own comment from a statement made by Elder Todd D. Christopherson Quote: "Someone who is adhering to the norm of chastity, someone who is following the covenants and the standards, teachings of the gospel of Christ, though they may be dealing with same-sex attraction really there’s is no reason they cannot be fully participative, that they can be a full-fledged member of the Church and hold callings and speak and enter the temple and serve there, and all the other opportunities and blessings that can come from Church membership will be available to them." Unquote. Dealing with same sex means not being an active homosexual as a member of the Church. It means that a person must repent and they are not Temple worthy if they are actively homosexual. Normal chastity is sex between a married man and women the Church teaches this to all its members.

  • Bill in Nebraska Maryville, MO
    March 15, 2013 1:53 p.m.

    The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints allows all young men who have same-sex attraction to be active scouts. However, to allow openly gay meaning they are living the gay lifestyle are not allowed to be scout leaders or in the scouting program. The same is done with any Young Woman who is sexually active to no longer be active in the Young Women program. They are treated as an adult and must therefore attend adult activities. Those with same-sex attraction may actually be leaders in the scouting program. However, this is not about those having same-sex attraction. This change is about those who are actually living in the gay/lesbian lifestyle which the LDS Church neither condones or supports. The website for same-sex attraction is there to give support to these individuals and to help them to live a chaste life. It does state that many who have same-sex attraction may never be able to have a family or a spouse in this life but if they live a very chaste life that they will be able to have all of this in the next life.

  • dustman Nampa, ID
    March 15, 2013 1:28 p.m.

    Don't confuse homosexuality with predator. Child molesters are predators. They aren't looking for same-sex sex. Predators look for victims. Two-Deep leadership is just one safeguard against this.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    March 15, 2013 11:44 a.m.

    this is really a non-issue. LDS parents will not support BSA if homosexuals are allowed as scout masters. Very simple. BSA can survey all they want but they really ought to already know the answer. They will lose the major source of their funding if they allow homosexuals ... it is their choice.

  • Hagothsen Las Vegas, NV
    March 15, 2013 11:12 a.m.

    BSA Scout Oath for 2013:

    On my honor, I will do my best,
    To do my duty, for the almighty dollar, and to fake the Scout Law;
    To help other people when it's politically expedient;
    To keep myself physically strong, mentally awake and morally faint.

  • The Caravan Moves On Enid, OK
    March 15, 2013 9:38 a.m.

    @ "San Diego Chargers Fan - San Diego, CA
    Funny to see how many people seem to know what the LDS church will do if BSA changes its membership policies. From many comments here ("Say goodbye to LDS church sponsorship") you must know President Monson better that the rest of us do. The LDS church openly embraces gays."


    You are insinuating that the LDS church accepts homosexual activity as being morally acceptable but they do not. "Love the sinner?" Sure. "Accept the sin?" Nope.

    This issue with homosexuals pushing to be allowed into the Boy Scout troops is not about just accepting "people" but accepting people BECAUSE (in their opinion) the actions and values they (homosexuals) have is not wrong or immoral.

  • Born that Way Layton, UT
    March 15, 2013 8:24 a.m.

    Rather than remaining in a state of denial about these confusing feelings, the LDS leadership has put a lot of effort into encouraging its members who feel this way to confess them and find ways to live in acceptance of it. It encourages fellow saints to be tolerant and kind to those who don't fit their own mold.

    If youre that youth and all your friends are going to scouts, and you cant, doesnt that invade your privacy regardless whether you want people knowing? Before the boy even has a chance to figure out himself, he's put in a box.

    This is not LDS, its the world way. Look at gay rolemodels. They follow hackneyed flaming archetypes. A youth in that situation doesnt realize he has choices. They dont have to give up their testimonies, membership, friends, or dream of parenthood. They dont have to follow the worlds course and they can find this out if they arent hiding it.

    I fear some feel it better a millstone be hung around their necks and they be drowned for a condition they didnt consciously choose.

    Its time we pursued acceptance so these youth. Tell them they have choices.

  • Born that Way Layton, UT
    March 15, 2013 8:09 a.m.

    I would like to see the BSA leave the matter to is charter organizations, but also provide leadership counsel on 'best practices', and even leave open the possibility of expelling groups that move too far beyond the boundaries of these best practices.

    I think the LDS church already takes (or has the potential to, in places where there's little experience and tradition is entrenched) a rather moderate stance when it comes to this issue.

    I also think that showing and having compassion for all boys is the best outcome. If the BSA does shape boys into young men with strong values, virtues, and integrity, then shouldn't there be an outreach to those young men who are born with tendencies that challenge the cookie-cutter male experience (if there is such a thing)?

    Imagine you're a young LDS youth, you feel Samesex feelings. You started scouting before you knew anything about sexuality as a cub scout. Now you start to realize that if you divulge your feelings, you will be kicked out of your scout troup. Suddenly the spotlight is blinding. The young man is taught to hide and hold it in

  • BigCougar Bountiful, UT
    March 15, 2013 2:01 a.m.

    "The words "morally straight" will have to be stricken from the oath. Next athiests will demand acceptance and God will be removed."

    Good point. Once they cave to the pressure of homosexual activists, Humanists will be next.

    After that it will be people who hate America and think the U.S.A. is a corrupt nation who oppresses other countries and the flag and symbols of freedom the USA espouses like the Eagle are all symbols of the oppression the USA forces on the rest of the world. These people will then work to have any recognition the BSA gives to those national emblems of freedom be removed from the program just like other liberal groups have successfully done with recognition of God and with morality.

    Pack Meetings and Court of Honors will no longer begin with a flag ceremony, pledge of allegiance and a prayer. Instead it will begin with a moment of silence and a caution not to pray or think of the flag.

    By then the BSA will be dead and the liberal groups will have won. At that point it will be on to the next set of victims. Conservative Christian Churches.

  • bandersen Saint George, UT
    March 14, 2013 9:02 p.m.

    Render Bender: Doesn't sound like a Scout Troop at all. If there are leaders who believe in Scouting and scouters who believe in scouting, the types of activiites you mentioned are handled quickly, thus the need for the Scouting program to have strict rules on behavior and purpose. Without them, Scouting is useless, as per your personal experience.

  • BigCougar Bountiful, UT
    March 14, 2013 8:08 p.m.

    A Scout is morally straight. That seems pretty darn straight forward. Its a fundamental and important part of what makes up a Boy Scout. Why bother with the organization if you're going to pry up all the planks that it is founded on? What's the point?

    Homosexuals are free, if they want an organization like the BSA, to go out and create their own organization and set it up to uphold whatever values they want to promote. Nobody is stopping them. I fully support them in that exercise of their rights. What I strongly oppose is their effort to go out and attack other peoples beliefs and try and force their agenda down their throats. They can believe what they want to believe in their own organizations and their own churches. Leave me be. It's very simple.

  • junkgeek Agua Dulce, TX
    March 14, 2013 7:57 p.m.

    "Morally straight" was not a statement about sexuality.

    The BSA is basically going to continue its bigotry and put the blame on the membership for it. Standup, BSA -- lead.

  • bw00ds Tucson, AZ
    March 14, 2013 4:30 p.m.

    This is more about upholding morals. Not particularly about predators (although that is an important issue) and not about money (although that is also an important issue). This is about upholding morals that one believes in.

    The BSA has lost some of my respect for even considering this issue. I am so tired of people and organizations caving on important principles. Some say it is a good thing they are surveying their stake holders, but I say they shouldn't even be considering it.

  • Bluto Sandy, UT
    March 14, 2013 3:42 p.m.

    It's a Private Organization....

    Outside groups should start their own organizations instead of trying to impose their will on long established traditions.

    If the Boy Scouts bow to this political pressure, look for Mormons, Cathloics, Methodists and Baptists to start new scouting organiztions altogether.

    Then the Scouts will lose 75% of their sponsorships overnight.

    It's my understanding that the LDS Church has had such a prorgram ready to go for 20 years.

  • Dan Bishop Lehi, UT
    March 14, 2013 2:35 p.m.

    Boys don't need a homosexual males for a leader. Teenagers who suffer from gender identity disorder and same-sex attraction have problems that need special attention. To put these boys or girls in a regular scout troop would probably be very traumatic to them. I hope that the Boy Scouts of America doesn't go this way. Perhaps if young males received more support and less bashing by society, we wouldn't have so much of this problem.

  • bribri86 Phoenix, AZ
    March 14, 2013 1:55 p.m.

    Rick for truth, I agree with you 100%. Thanks for your stance. I stand with you

  • amazondoc USA, TN
    March 14, 2013 8:56 a.m.

    @jondo --

    "How do you justify abandonment of the Scout Oaths?"

    Many people -- the people fighting against BSA discrimination -- believe that abandoning the policy does not require abandoning the oaths.

    "What is an individual's Duty to God in regard to homosexuality when it is considered a sin by the Bible?"

    Eating shellfish is considered a sin by the Bible. Is that grounds for excluding someone from the Scouts?

    "No one objected to having a few clandestine homosexual scouts or leaders as long as they were not openly gay"

    If you use this policy, you are encouraging people to lie. Isn't that also a sin?

    "Once "married" they will want children through whatever legal or medical mechanism is available."

    Yup, just as much as any infertile couple might.

    "Not only is abuse a concern"

    Why is abuse a special concern? Straight women are allowed to participate in the BSA, and they are just as likely to be attracted to young men as gay men are. In fact, if you use this argument you should really encourage lesbian women to participate -- no risk of sexual abuse there!

  • San Diego Chargers Fan San Diego, CA
    March 13, 2013 6:38 p.m.

    @Mc -- you make very valid point.

    What does a scout troop (especially an LDS unit) do with a boy who is openly defying the religious values his church espouses? What would an eagle board of review do with a boy who had admittedly violated the law of chastity with his girlfriend? Would it be different if he were actively working through the repentance process with his bishop? What if he has viewed pornography? Should the scout troop kick him out? Should he be denied the rank of eagle? These are all (in my view) violations of the oath to be "morally straight".

    How does BSA handle these situations? I would hope that the standard would be the same regardless of whether his temptations were homosexual or heterosexual.

  • Mc West Jordan, UT
    March 13, 2013 2:53 p.m.

    @San Diego Chargers Fan
    I guess it depends on what your definition of "openly gay" is. Usually, people who have same sex attraction but are not, and don't intend to be, sexually active are not considered "openly gay," atleast not to me. Openly gay individuals generally are not living the standards and teachings of the Church and are quite "open" about it. They do not accept "the norm of chastity" that Elder Christopherson spoke of.

    The proposed change by BSA will not make it more in line with LDS policy.

  • San Diego Chargers Fan San Diego, CA
    March 13, 2013 1:51 p.m.

    Funny to see how many people seem to know what the LDS church will do if BSA changes its membership policies. From many comments here ("Say goodbye to LDS church sponsorship") you must know President Monson better that the rest of us do. The LDS church openly embraces gays. To Quote Elder D. Todd Christopherson of the Twelve:

    "Someone who is adhering to the norm of chastity, someone who is following the covenants and the standards, teachings of the gospel of Christ, though they may be dealing with same-sex attraction really there’s no reason they cannot be fully participative, that they can’t be a full-fledged member of the Church and hold callings and speak and enter the temple and serve there, and all the other opportunities and blessings that can come from Church membership will be available to them."

    If the BSA changes its membership to be more in line with the LDS policy, why would the Church object?

  • San Diego Chargers Fan San Diego, CA
    March 13, 2013 1:36 p.m.

    Here in San Diego it seems there are just as many female scoutmasters and assistant scoutmasters as male ones. I go to Roundtable and am almost outnumbered by the females. As I mentioned in my original comment, sexuality and sexual attraction are never topics of discussion in scout meetings or on outings. Youth protection guidelines provide are enough to keep boys safe.

    My role as an LDS scoutmaster is first and foremost that of "youth minister" and "priesthood leader", with scouting providing many valuable tools to teach the boys under my stewardship. If we were to go to a camporee where another troop had an openly gay scout in attendance, I try to imagine what President Monson would do or say if he were with us. He would probably teach and encourage the boys, just as I try to do in my role as scoutmaster. To think that my boys would somehow infer that homosexuality is encouraged just because there happens to be another "gay-friendly" troop there is absurd.

    Some of the "abandonment of the Scout Oath/Character" comments here reflect the insular perspective of somebody who has grown up knowing only scouting in Utah. Chill out!

  • Mc West Jordan, UT
    March 13, 2013 1:11 p.m.

    We raised 5 boys who are eagle scouts with their father very involved in scouting in many positions, both local and district, and serving on several woodbadge staffs. I served as a den leader for many years and as scout committee chairman. We love scouting and have always contributed to Friends of Scouting. We love the standards taught by the Scout Oath and the skills taught through programs and merit badges. As leaders and parents we always taught our boys to stand for the principles of scouting no matter what peer pressure they may encounter, even if it's hard.

    How sad it is to see that wonderful institution ready to abandon principles and change standards due to peer pressure. For the sake of sponsorship or to avoid litigation they would change their very core beliefs. Although sponsoring units will be able to limit their membership according to their beliefs, all council and district training materials will have to be changed to reflect acceptance of LBGT units. The words "morally straight" will have to be stricken from the oath. Next athiests will demand acceptance and God will be removed.

    The BSA needs to stand by the principles it has always taught.

  • GiuseppeG Murray, Utah
    March 13, 2013 12:49 p.m.

    Agree with Dutchman. Does "openly gay" mean, same gender attracted but not actively engaged in sexual relations or does it mean actively engaged in sexual relation? Does it mean both, either, or something else? The answers might be different depending on the definitions.

  • ApacheNaiche PINETOP, AZ
    March 13, 2013 12:32 p.m.

    Since when did "morally strong" translate to homosexuality? Answer: NEVER!

  • ApacheNaiche PINETOP, AZ
    March 13, 2013 12:26 p.m.

    Go ahead and let the gays into the Boy Scouts. Then say goodbye to the LDS Church sponsership which would be the death knell to scouting.

  • amazondoc USA, TN
    March 13, 2013 12:08 p.m.

    @Jim --

    "By the very name of the organization, "Boy Scouts of America", promotes values that are and have been perfectly moral and acceptable to the majority of participants and supporters."

    The name is "Boy Scouts of America", not "straight Mormon Boy Scouts of America". Multiple Christian denominations welcome homosexual members, as well as non-Christian groups that also do so. It seems to me that the "special pleading" being done is on the side of the LDS and Catholic members who want to overrule the beliefs of more liberal religious groups, as well as denying the civil rights of homosexuals in general.

    As someone else already pointed out, "homosexual" does not mean "sexual predator". Straight women are allowed to participate in BSA, and they are just as likely to be attracted to young male scouts as homosexual men are.

    BSA membership has already dropped 20% since this policy went to court in 2000. Multiple large corporate sponsors have also dropped out, and continue to do so. The BSA is shooting itself in the foot by continuing this discrimination. Since the man expected to be the next President of the National BSA Board also opposes it, hopefully it will end soon.

  • bearfan tremonton, UT
    March 13, 2013 11:59 a.m.

    Remember Christ protected the prostitute and ate with the sinners. Then he said "GO YOUR WAY AND SIN NO MORE." Then he said "COME FOLLOW ME" meaning "DO AS YOU HAVE SEEN ME DO".He didn't say join me in your sin. Every one always leaves out the second part of the story.

  • jondo Oswego, NY
    March 13, 2013 12:00 p.m.

    How do you justify abandonment of the Scout Oaths? Where is the Scouting's Character? Money trumps the Oath. Do you realize that in order to accommodate the proposal you would have to rewrite the oaths. What is an individual's Duty to God in regard to homosexuality when it is considered a sin by the Bible? What does Morally Straight mean in regard to character given your Duty to God? No one objected to having a few clandestine homosexual scouts or leaders as long as they were not openly gay and absolutely respected the idea of not ever bringing sexuality into conversation or action. The movement in society has placed sexuality over scouting.
    Any compromise to allow local chapters to decide the issue is simply passing the buck on a hard decision. If the GLBT wins this battle the victory will be parlayed into momentum for gay marriage. Once "married" they will want children through whatever legal or medical mechanism is available. Not only is abuse a concern but the deeper concern is their opportunity to mold a generation to their views on open sexuality. This is fundamentally wrong and the Scouts ought not facilitate acceptance of open sexuality.

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    March 13, 2013 11:16 a.m.

    Keep in mind that the proposal is that each troop / chartering org can make their own choice.

    In Utah, since the vast majority are chartered by the LDS church, how will that affect Utah Scouting?

    Yes, maybe one may choose not to go to national or regional scouting events, but is that really a big deal?

    This whole issue will affect Utah less then anywhere else. What do you care what they do in Idaho or Florida?

    It wont affect you in the least.

  • twspears6007 Bakersfield, CA
    March 13, 2013 10:49 a.m.

    I took the survey yesterday and the questions were very informative.I believe this survey will be helpful to the BSA National Board to make a decision in May 2013. I favor this type of survey over a handful of Board members making a decision without input from the Scout leaders that will be directly effected by the Boards final vote. The fact that the homosexual scouts have been secretly members is at best a character flaw in their desire to be a Scout. Knowing that they broke the policy without reservations is not what Scouting is all about refering to the Scout Oath and Law the foundation of the BSA.Scouts are always reminded to live these values everyday is a clear message to be a Scout of integrity. My thoughts are that our nation has become a divided nation because of the constant pressure to make changes in a system that is not broke. It is not that changes are not good. It is a matter using discrimination to solve discrimination. This proposed change in legally allowing homosexuals in the program is the most important decision that the BSA has ever faced since its U.S founding.

  • Jumpyman Salt Lake City, UT
    March 13, 2013 10:37 a.m.

    The Boy Scouts of America has been one of the few organizations that has stood up to the polical pressures to change american morals. I have been very supportive of them in the past, but if they cave in to the militant gay agenda, I will not be supportive anymore. I don't have any problems with people that are gay- I have problems when they try to tell me that what I believe is wrong and try to force me to change. Isn't that what they complain about as well? Why should the Boy Scouts change thier morals? Don't tell me that this is a civil rights issue. It is not one. No one has rights being infringed upon them. It is not a right to be able to join the boy scouts. Just like the girl scouts won't allow a boy in their troop, the boy scouts can decide who they let in and who they don't. The only reason the Boy Scouts are under attack is because they have chosen to stand up to the LGBT folk.

  • Happy Valley Heretic Orem, UT
    March 13, 2013 10:08 a.m.

    The founding principal some of you have forgotten:
    Baden Powell founded the scouts to prepare young men to go to war when they were old enough.

    The rest of it was window dressing.

    Now it's all window dressing and religious propaganda for most.

    ...and I'm an Eagle Scout who worked at different scout camps around the US.
    Gay does not equal pedophile any more than clergy equals pedophile.

  • Fender Bender Saint George, UT
    March 13, 2013 9:58 a.m.

    RE: Jim Cobabe

    Your argument (how we shouldn't bend to the wishes of a small minority that wants the establishment to accomodate a set of values different from the well-established norm) could have been easily used against the de-segregation movement of the '60s. Indeed, your suggestion that the LGBT community should create its own organization strikes me as a "seperate-but-equal" sort of mentality.

  • Dutchman Murray, UT
    March 13, 2013 9:51 a.m.

    The survey is flawed because it does not define or deferentiate between active behavior and inclinations that are not and may not ever be acted upon. I started the survey but did not complete it because I could not articulate the diffence between active behavior and inclinations and the examples given did not distinguish the issues either.

  • Jim Cobabe Provo, UT
    March 13, 2013 9:20 a.m.

    Tempest in a teapot. By the very name of the organization, "Boy Scouts of America", promotes values that are and have been perfectly moral and acceptable to the majority of participants and supporters. Now, in an attempt at social engineering, a small minority claiming to be "different" wishes to change this in order to accomodate a different set of values. In legal terms this is commonly known as "special pleading", and is not sufficient justification for changing the rules. Let the "LGBT" community create and support their own organization, "LGBT Scouts" that caters to and fosters acceptance of the deviant behavior that they seek to normalize and force on everyone else.

  • Carol P. Warnick Ephraim, Utah
    March 13, 2013 8:40 a.m.

    The Scout pledge speaks for itself "morally straight." Should that be changed after being recited by Scouts for over a hundred years? This was meant to be taken seriously by generations of Scouts as a moral code of conduct. It shouldn't be revized or changed.

  • Fender Bender Saint George, UT
    March 13, 2013 8:30 a.m.

    #2. I have a friend who is a Boy Scout leader in his LDS ward. There is a young man in his troop who is physically intimate with his girlfriend. This boy doesn't come to church, but he does participate in scouting. The leadership in that ward sees scouting as a kind of outreach opportunity - a way to involve this boy with his peers who could be a positive influence. If there's no problem with this boy participating in the LDS scouting program, why would there be any problem allowing an openly gay scout to participate - especially one who is celibate? This seems especially ridiculous given the statements the LDS Church has made over the last decade emphasizing that being gay is not a sin as long as you "don't act on those urges", and that homosexual relationships are no worse than heterosexual relationships outside of marriage.

  • Fender Bender Saint George, UT
    March 13, 2013 8:27 a.m.

    #1. When I was a teenager, I was very active in Boy Scouts. We had a lot of young men in our ward, and although our leaders were all good men, it was simply not possible for them to keep an eye on over 20 boys. Our troop had some fun activities, and we went to some neat places for scout camps, such as Yellowstone and Lake Powell. However, hen I think back on my days spent in the BSA program, my predominant memories are of the gambling, swearing, smoking, bullying, vandalizing, and fighting that mostly went on behind our leaders backs at scout camps. When my son is a teenager, I won't be upset if he doesn't want to participate in scouting. If my bishop ever calls me to be a Boy Scout leader, that's the one calling I won't feel bad about turning down. Based on my own experience, I think the potential harm from scouting done wrong outweighs the potential good from scouting done right.

    March 13, 2013 8:11 a.m.

    If the BSA committee allows for the chartered organizations to make the decision, we may see the chartered organizations who don't accept gay scouts and leaders being sued by individuals. That probably won't last too long before those organizations decide to drop the program. Eventually, the only chartered organizations left would be gay ones. I know this is a slippery slope argument, but can anyone honestly tell me that they believe no one will sue the chartered organizations that don't allow gay scouts and scout leaders? And do we honestly believe those church sponsored organizations will continue the relationship with BSA in the face of lawsuits?

  • estreetshuffle Window Rock, AZ
    March 13, 2013 7:58 a.m.

    All human beings have a dark side. I am sure that there are those that lust after the opposite sex however will not admit it and are part of the BSA. so it would be hypocritical to not allow others not of their belief into the organization. Mormons are not accepted everywhere; however, they have rights as well as the Gay Comuninity. Everybody has rights even though we may not believe in their belief system. It is respect for others. Jesus protected the prostitute from being stoned; stop throwing stones at others not of your belief.

  • hvidovre Stansbury Park, UT
    March 13, 2013 7:21 a.m.

    David Centerville

    You bring up great points. I think the issue with the BSA if they allow the change is really about money. With the risk of loosing corporate sponsors and other legal issue they want a change. Does not make sense because goes against there foundation of values. It is amazing how "we" or really the BSA can justify this change, but when it comes to protecting there salaries seems that is more important then the core values and what the masses think. We can justify anything these days to meet our needs weather right or wrong.

  • KC UT/VA Bealeton, VA
    March 13, 2013 7:05 a.m.

    After taking the survey I became concerned the BSA has already set course to offload this decision on chartered organizations. It may give the LDS Church a welcome way to maintain involvement without admitting openly gay leaders, but by dividing and conquering,radical factions may have already won.

    If this is the case, they cowed BSA into abandoning founding principles. They have also set up any smaller chartered organizations who choose not to allow gay members/leaders to endure the public pressure & possible future litigation alone. A cowardly way to avoid losing money @ the top and save face amidst heavy advocacy group pressure.

    Results of tactics used by these groups are either slow death by perpetual, unrelenting smear campaigns & resource draining litigation or suicide by surrendering core beliefs upon which their entire existence was founded to appeasement.

    I wish BSA would stand up to the pressure groups. BSA is not intolerant of having gay members--currently there are many participating. It's about who they want at the rudder. Gay radicals aren't satisfied until they call ALL the shots.

  • byu rugby Crystal Lake, IL
    March 13, 2013 7:01 a.m.

    BSA is making a huge and irreversible mistake if they succumb to those who would destroy the organization for the sake of being politically correct. furthermore, if it happens, the numbers of those joining because of the action be a small drop in the bucket compared to flood of participants leaving.

    It is always interesting that the groups that demand acceptance and understanding for themselves cannot provide it to anyone else.

  • OneAmerican Idaho Falls, ID
    March 13, 2013 7:02 a.m.

    @Jonathan Eddy

    I couldn't agree with you more. My son worked at a camp for the summer, and the director ended up paying him what amounted to $1 an hour plus room (a tent) and board. Then, while the CEO of Scouting was pulling down a $4 million dollar retirement package, my son had to buy his Staff Jacket (he was required to wear) out of that $1/hour. My wife spent one whole Saturday teaching at a Jamboral. To show how much they appreciated it, they allowed her to PAY FOR HER OWN lunch that was provided, while I assume the professional scouters ate for free.

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    March 13, 2013 6:03 a.m.

    This will be a local issue.

    Talk to your local chartering org.

    It is very easy to skip events that would mingle scouts from other areas. If you are concerned about this, work to insure that your local group is in line with your beliefs and have your kid forgo any activities that involve other troops that are not in line with your beliefs.

    Problem solved.

    Well, that is unless your are intent on forcing your beliefs on others that dont affect you.

  • David Centerville, UT
    March 12, 2013 9:11 p.m.

    What does the Scout Law and Oath mean?

    What does "morally straight" mean?

    What does "duty to God" mean?

    If a religion teaches that homosexuality is wrong, does someone that doesn't agree with that teaching have the right to try and force a change within that religion?

    Upon what basis might the religion believe that homosexuality is wrong?

    If the basis is historical and scriptural, should that basis and belief be respected.

    What does the US Constitution or Bill of Rights state regarding religion?

    What is the right of religion in this country to establish and maintain doctrinal beliefs?

    Is there risk in allowing courts, government, special interest groups, or others to try to force a religion to adopt practices that are contrary to their beliefs?

    Are there protections under the law that keep courts, government, special interest groups or others who abuse religions over doctrinal issues to be held accountable for their abuses (vandalism, for example).

    Does the traditional values of Scouting mean anything today? What are those traditional values? Did those values provide meaningful structure, teachings, or foundation to the lives of Boy Scouts?

    Do those traditional values harm others?

  • Rick for Truth Provo, UT
    March 12, 2013 8:46 p.m.

    I have withheld my "Friends of Souting donation" and will await the outcome. Even if the LDS Church caves, I will not.

  • Jonathan Eddy Payson, UT
    March 12, 2013 7:55 p.m.

    Just end the relationship already. The BSA is just another corporation that has succumbed to peer pressure in this awful period of secularism and has compromised its core values.

    If it wasn't for the fear of losing "friends of scouting" donations, BSA leadership would have made the "switch" years ago.

  • War dog Taylorsville, UT
    March 12, 2013 7:34 p.m.

    A boy or girl no matter what their sexual orientation should be allowed in scouting. No amount of regulations or background checks will stop a predator, only a fool would believe it would

  • Go Big Blue!!! Bountiful, UT
    March 12, 2013 7:28 p.m.

    Homosexual is not the same as a sexual preditor.I would wager that most secual abuse against boys in scouting has been perpetraited by married man living in the heterosexual world.

    As long as a troop has two-deep leadership that follow the scouting guidelines I have no problem sending my son to scout camp. I agree with Chargers Fan.

  • Austin DN Reader Austin, TX
    March 12, 2013 7:20 p.m.

    @San Diego Chargers Fan. See the Austin Statesman, the Martin Turner case that was just settled. 26 year Scouter, just busted for molesting 3 boys. Still happens, and I'm sure it's still happening.

  • San Diego Chargers Fan San Diego, CA
    March 12, 2013 7:00 p.m.

    This is much ado about nothing. The membership policy should have been changed 10 years ago. BSA already has dozens of mechanisms to ensure that a homosexual leader cannot attack a boy.
    All new leaders are subjected to a background check to ensure they are not a child predator. All leaders must be trained in youth protection guidelines to ensure a boy will not be a victim. Leaders are trained to step in quickly to avoid, and to quickly report, any violations of these policies.

    In addition, LDS units have plenty of additional layers of oversight which would keep a homosexual out. Consider an openly gay LDS man who approaches the troop leader asking to be a scout leader. In LDS units, many factors are considered when the bishopric calls a new scout leader, including "worthiness" of the candidate as well as the needs of the boys. There are plenty of reasons NOT to call someone to be a scout leader, apart from whether he is openly gay.

    Finally, as a scoutmaster, I have been on over a hundred outings and sexuality has never been a topic of discussion around the campfire. Again, much ado about nothing.