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Kayak8's avatar

What do you think about Eagle Scouts (BSA) sending their awards back to headquarters due to the anti-gay stance of the Boy Scouts?

Asked by Kayak8 (16395 points ) July 24th, 2012

There is a collection of moving and pointed letters from Eagle Scouts to headquarters here

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22 Answers

augustlan's avatar

Excellent. Protest from participants seems much more likely to resonate with the organization. I applaud their actions!

Imadethisupwithnoforethought's avatar

I am suddenly moved to ask my ex-wife to drop boy scouts for my boys.

But whatever I suggest to her for parenting, she does the opposite.

creative1's avatar

Excellant, people should be accepting of all!!!

janbb's avatar

YAY!!

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

Thank you for sharing this story. I’ll have to pass it on to my brother, who was an Eagle Scout. Maybe he will follow suit. Thank goodness the Girl Scouts don’t have the same stance. If they did, I would gladly turn in my sash with all of the badges, pins, etc.

GladysMensch's avatar

It’s not like this is a new policy, and you’re going to have a hard time convincing me that an eagle scout didn’t know the policy. But better late than never.

blueiiznh's avatar

I hope it helps.

rojo's avatar

I think that this is a heartwrenching decision for them and applaud their courage and conviction. I am sorry to see an organization that I thought highly of both when I was a member and for years after has chosen such a bigoted and unjustified stance just to mollify a few hardcore fundamentalists.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

@johnpowell The news report played in Jon Stewart’s report says, “The Boy Scouts of America is reaffirming their ban on openly gay boys and adult leaders.” That makes it even worse.

@Kayak8 I just sent your link to a high school friend who was in the Boy Scouts, along with his younger brother, who is gay. Their father was their leader and very much anti-gay at the time. He has since changed his mind and even attended his younger son’s marriage ceremony.

Sunny2's avatar

I think they have an excellent sense of what is right and showed it in an effective way. I hope contributions to BSA drop precipitously.

Crashsequence2012's avatar

Their prerogative just as the BSA’s recruiting policies are theirs.

wundayatta's avatar

I think it is an excellent and wonderful gesture. My son was never part of the boy scouts because they are such a discriminatory organization. Ironic, too. My best friend discovered he was gay in the scouts. I think the scouts help a lot of boys find out who they are. Yet the scouts stigmatize themselves. Very weird.

Brian1946's avatar

I think it’s a wonderful gesture.

I left the BSA 50 years ago at the rank of First Class, and in support of the Eagle Scouts statement, I’ve canceled my grandiose plans to rejoin the BSA in pursuit of my Star badge. ;-)

WillWorkForChocolate's avatar

I think it’s fantastic!

PhiNotPi's avatar

As an active Boy Scout, I believe that my opinion is pretty important on this topic.

Sometimes, it seems like the BSA has two faces.

The first face is that of a great youth program. This is the side that I experience, and it is most definitely one of the best youth programs in the world. It allows the children to take leadership roles that actually affect the outcome of a camping trip, such as “where will we camp,” what are we supposed to do there” and “what are we going to eat”. In my troop, ALL of the food that I eat was cooked and prepared by the youth.

Part of the reason that Boy Scouts makes such a good leadership program is that the youth feel all of the consequences of their decisions, but not permanently. If they forget something important for a camp out, the camp out will be terrible.

In the end, the youth program teaches the principles of leadership, teamwork, responsibility, and acceptance of others (I have met scouts of many races and religions). This is the reason that the Eagle Scout badge is regarded so highly.

The second face of the BSA is a little more disappointing, that of policies and official statements. They are afraid to follow through with some of the things that they teach to the youth. In my opinion, they are not discriminating against gays becuase they believe that it is immoral to be gay, but becuase they are afraid. In the end, they tarnish the reputation of everybody in scouts becuase of the discrimination.

I honestly wish that the National level of the BSA did a better job of practicing what they preach. A am deeply saddened by that news story.

Anyway, I would like to mention that the policy at the national level does not boil down to teachings at the local level.

The only mentioning of sexuality in the Boy Scout handbook is, as far as I am aware, in the first four or five pages. As a requirement to earn the scout rank (the lowest rank), the parent is instructed to go over those page with the youth at home. Those pages deal with preventing child sexual abuse (there is no mention of homosexuality). After this, the parent is instructed to literally tear those first few pages out of the handbook.

I would also like to mention that the leaders at the local level are not paid employees, and are just other parents who have volunteered.

Bellatrix's avatar

I think it is fabulous that people are taking this stance. I also want to thank you @PhiNotPi for your input. You make some excellent points about the difference between the attitudes of the ‘scouts’ and the actions of the organisation.

ETpro's avatar

I salute their actions. Sooner or later the BSA Management will realize that the horror stories about sudden moral decay and everyone catching “the gay” unless homosexuality remains permanently in the closet are just a bunch of nonsense, the same sort of claptrap that turns out to be behind every other form of bigotry we’ve abandoned. Despite what Chicken-little may squawk, when you throw off the bondage of prejudice, the sky doesn’t actually fall.

As to rights, I come down firmly in agreement with @Crashsequence2012.

Supacase's avatar

I applaud them. It is difficult to wrap my head around the fact that the very organization that helped turn these boys and men into such upstanding people is the very organization that requires them to take such action. If not for the BSA many of these men would not have the level if integrity required to make this stand… If not for the BSA these men would not need to take this stand.

@PhiNotPi explained the situation exceptionally well.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

I heard back from my friend regarding the article. Here is his response:

Wow, that’s intense! I don’t think I can give mine up quite yet but I’ll think about it. My brother got his too. I’ll talk to him about it. Thanks for sending this.

So @Kayak8, thanks from my friend for sharing the article.

reijinni's avatar

Bravo!!! The organization is crap. I didn’t even bother joining that lame club myself.

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