[Note: I tend to avoid political issues in this space. To me, this isn't political. This is common sense.]
On my the day before my 18th birthday, I became an Eagle Scout. I started as a Cub Scout in elementary school and stuck with it all the way through to the end.
And it was a blast! Camping trips, fires, obstacle courses, friends – an absolutely amazing experience.
Becoming an Eagle Scout was an accomplishment I was incredibly proud of.
So why am I seriously considering cutting up my official membership card?
Because of this. After a supposed two-year investigation, they decided to “reaffirm” their existing ban of gay parents and kids.
“Be prepared…to have sex with women and only women, junior.” – A new Scout motto?
Scouting has a long history of providing opportunities and experiences to young boys, led by volunteers and parents. What they are effectively doing is turning away adults who want to help. And telling certain kids that they don’t belong.
Way to be part of the solution to problems in our society, Boy Scouts of America. They are creating a PR crisis for themselves!
“Do your best…to pick up girls. But if you fail, don’t try to pick up a dude.” – A new Scout motto?
Scouting, in my experience, was about inclusion and learning about the world. Isn’t having a diverse group of friends and peers something parents should want for their kids?
Also…last time I checked, “gay” isn’t a contagious disease that you can pick up in a doctor’s waiting room, but I may have missed a memo somewhere along the way.
“A Scout is: Trustworthy, Loyal, Helpful, Friendly, Courteous, Kind, Obedient, Cheerful, Thrifty, Brave, Clean, Reverent…and Not Gay” – New Scout Law?
It’s Boy Scouts. Not Straight Boy Scouts.
And to that point, at what age do you start testing for “gayness” in kids? And what does that test look or sound like? Is there an acceptable amount of sexual curiosity a young boy or teenager is allowed to have before you banish them?
Instead of teaching kids about the differences in people (and that differences are a GREAT thing), Boy Scouts of America has chosen to take the easy way out by just avoiding something they don’t want to deal with.
What’s funny is that Scouting taught me about working hard, making tough decisions and respecting everyone and everything around me.
As a (once?) proud Eagle Scout, it’s heartbreaking to see fear, discrimination and bigotry overtake this organization, especially when the victims are boys Scouting should be embracing.