… Several people have approached and written to me wanting to know my opinion on the Boy Scout scandal. And yes, it is a scandal. Why haven’t I addressed here? Because I don’t know what to think. I, like most of you, are still plagued with tons of questions. I’m struggling to understand it all myself and the impact it will have on the scouting organization. Mostly, my concern is for my own boy scout and his well being. I’m honestly trying to determine how we’ll proceed from here. Now that the Boy Scouts have done this… this thing.
My son is involved in a wonderfully close knit troop associated with a local Catholic parish. All but one boy in the troop is Catholic. He’s Orthodox. Close enough. Many of the parents feel that this decision will not directly effect our troop. I disagree. Our district is huge and is made of troops from all sort of associations. To naively believe that our troop is safely enveloped in a Catholic bubble is dangerous. And I’ve expressed this to other troop parents. In less than three weeks the boys will be packing up and venturing to camp with hundreds of other troops – troops associated with parishes or organizations that see no problem with openly homosexual men and young boys influencing our children. Any protective bubble shrouding our troop will burst.
What I hear from other parents is “so what if the kid is gay?”. Yes. And so what? It’s not like there haven’t been boys struggling with same sex attraction involved in the Boy Scouts before. They were never excluded from the scouts in the past, similar to the old “Don’t ask, don’t tell” policy of the military, unless they behaved in a way contradictory to their oaths. Like, say, making suggestive advances to other scouts. But you know what? Any scout trying to hit on another was reprimanded and removed from the organization. You think the co-ed Venturing Scouts would put up with that crap? No. Absolutely not. Yet now we find ourselves in a conundrum. Scouts can be openly gay now.
Openly gay. What does that even mean?
Outside of our bedrooms, when is there ever an appropriate time to be openly sexual anything? Am I openly heterosexual? What does that look like, to be openly sexual? Are we supposed to introduce our sexual preferences like we introduce our names? When we have performance reviews at work do we firstly state to our bosses, “Before we begin, I am gay/straight”? “Hi, I’m Kat, nice to meet you. I prefer sex with men.” This is total ass-buffonery. I remember a time, not too long ago, where we used a different name for people who preferred to be defined solely by their sexual activity. We called them sluts.
So explain to me why in the hell it’s so important to be openly gay? Why do we need to know and celebrate every gay man or woman who announces to the media their sexual preferences. It bears not weight on the person or their accomplishments. So openly gay scouts makes no fracking sense.
No, my main concern, the one that has me contemplating removing my son from the BSA is how all this open homosexuality will be put into practice.
Are we not going to reprimand a young man who solicits affection from another boy at camp because this would be insensitive to the gay youth and his right to behave openly? Or worse… What if two gay scouting boyfriends want to share a tent? We have to accept this, right under our noses and in front of our children, because the gay youth can be openly gay now? And if the boyfriends sharing a tent makes another scout uncomfortable will that scout get a demerit for not being accepting enough? Have we suddenly agreed to compromise our morals for the sake of appeasement?
And if you honestly think this will stop with just openly gay scouts than you need to remove your head out from under that rock. The question has never been “if gay leaders” but “when gay leaders” are welcomed into the BSA. Gay leaders and their open gayness. Around young impressionable youth, youth still struggling through adolescence. Openly gay leaders teaching boys that being openly sexual is ok, against the morals they learn at home and at Church.
I put my son in scouts for very clear and specific reasons, as I am sure most parents did. My reasons were that they reinforced good upright morals and because I believe boys need to be around other boys and positive male role models. What we teach our children at home and in church is going to be contradicted, for sure; at school, in entertainment, and even in the friends our kids chose to be around. But the Scouts was that one organization we could trust not add to that confusing world of contradictory moral messages. Not anymore.
To be sure… this change was never about allowing struggling gay youth to finally enjoy the scouting experience. Gay boys have been members of the BSA in the past. No, this is about forcing acceptance and manipulating children to impose that forced acceptance.
So now what? Is this what we want to be a part of?
I can understand that the boys and parents too are not ready to throw in the towel on this organization. Many have said they will ride it out till things get really bad, which is inevitable. They are invested. I am invested. I don’t think there is going to be a mass exodus… just yet. Not until our bishop makes a statement and our local priests speak out. If you are reading this, bishops and priests, your flock is waiting.
In the end; however, my loyalty is to my son and not an organization. If we are the only ones in our troop to go, yes he’ll suffer by missing his friends, but I think he will suffer more to be exposed to all that open gayness the BSA has suddenly deemed ok for your youth.
Right now the only emotion I can muster is resentment. Resentment for the BSA caving to the pressure and resentment to gay advocacy groups for forcing us to accept their open lifestyle. Why can’t I just accept the person, and not their flauntingly open sexual preferences?
For another eight years my son is still mine. Then the world will take him – unless I prepare him effectively. In the meantime it is my responsibility as a parent to make sure what I teach him is solidly planted. My faith, our Catholicism, is his armor, sword and shield. I have eight more years to forge it before he is ready to face the onslaught of the world. And right now the BSA has just become a chink in that armor which is now my moral obligation and duty to see this weakness is removed.
Things to consider: Scouts of St. George.