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(Think Progress)   Boy Scouts to Troop: "You think you won't enjoy scouting without your gay scoutmaster? Let's see how much you enjoy scouting when we reject your charter"   (thinkprogress.org) divider line 185
    More: Followup, United Methodist Church, Scout troop, coming out, rentals, Boy Scouts of America, Eagle Scout  
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9542 clicks; posted to Main » on 21 Apr 2014 at 12:21 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-04-21 10:00:18 AM  
After NBC News contacted the local Boy Scout council about McGrath, it and the national organization moved to reject him.

Way to go, NBC!
 
2014-04-21 10:56:37 AM  
On the one hand, you've got the BSA heads acting like dicks as usual.

On the other hand though, you've got a church that not only accepts the scoutmaster's orientation, but will gladly back him up. That's an extremely positive part of the article.
 
2014-04-21 11:53:17 AM  
The part of this whole debacle that I've never understood is how the hell BSA is still a thing that has continued to exist beyond the 60s.
 
2014-04-21 11:58:37 AM  
They're so anti-gay, yet they were founded by a gay. Go figure.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/20/opinion/scoutings-gay-founder.html
 
2014-04-21 12:22:59 PM  

fbcdn-sphotos-f-a.akamaihd.net


"Don't be afraid to use your nails, boys!"

 
2014-04-21 12:24:59 PM  
FUMC here is portland hosted my troop (troop 1). We had a really conservative ex-vietnam marine troopleader when the gay issue started to surface and he very wisely started a dont ask dont tell policy with all leaders and scouts. Solved a lot of issues given national policy.
 
2014-04-21 12:27:38 PM  

kid_icarus: The part of this whole debacle that I've never understood is how the hell BSA is still a thing that has continued to exist beyond the 60s.


What I don't get is why the Boy Scouts want to play both sides.  Now it's "Allow gay scouts, but don't allow gay scoutmasters."  How is that supposed to satisfy anyone?  Obviously the gay-rights crowd is still going to slam the BSA for discriminating against homosexuals, and the anti-gay crowd is going to still going to slam the BSA for NOT discriminating against homosexuals ENOUGH.

Is there some sort of large contingent of Goldilocks-homophobes the BSA is trying to court?  "This organization is too gay-accepting, but THIS organization is too homophobic!  And THIS organisation here is JUST RIGHT!"

Pick a side, BSA.
 
2014-04-21 12:28:04 PM  
wonkroom.thinkprogress.org
 
2014-04-21 12:28:07 PM  
What's to stop the chapter from ignoring the revocation and continuing to camp and give out badges? What power does the national organization actually have?
 
2014-04-21 12:28:12 PM  
Just take away the neckerchief and the gays will leave on their own.

And you thought they joined to be near the young boys.
 
2014-04-21 12:28:43 PM  

Zyme: FUMC here is portland hosted my troop (troop 1). We had a really conservative ex-vietnam marine troopleader when the gay issue started to surface and he very wisely started a dont ask dont tell policy with all leaders and scouts. Solved a lot of issues given national policy.


And DADT continues to be a work around for fascists, rather than a good idea.
 
2014-04-21 12:29:02 PM  
FAIL for subby.
The troop didn't have a problem with the gay scoutmaster - it was the BSA organization that did.

Your submission should have been: "You think you won't will enjoy scouting without your gay scoutmaster? Let's see how much you enjoy scouting when we reject your charter"
 
2014-04-21 12:29:20 PM  
www.toddmorrison.com
 
2014-04-21 12:30:09 PM  
It's a wonder anyone belongs to anything anymore. Everyone has gotten so litigious and contentious.
 
2014-04-21 12:30:23 PM  
I'm trying to figure out how the Boy Scouts turned into the Tea Party, while the Girl Scouts somehow manage to be Code Pink(in the eyes of hard right conservatives).

WTFH?
Just let the damn kids learn how to earn merit badges and sell popcorn in front of Wal Marts.
 
Skr
2014-04-21 12:30:54 PM  
Loved being in the scouts, was never taught to hate anything perhaps due to awesome leaders. Great times learning life skills, helping other people, getting stoned in the woods etc.

I'm surprised there hasn't been a large schism with the tolerant and intolerant going their separate trails. Instead you get the SUPER intolerant breaking off to do a SUPER hate powwow or whatever you call Trail Life- Christian-based Trail Life excludes openly gay boys in alternative to BSA
 
2014-04-21 12:31:14 PM  
www.hatchedit.com

Unavailable for comment.
 
2014-04-21 12:31:33 PM  
I don't see what the big deal is ....

web-images.chacha.com
 
2014-04-21 12:33:40 PM  

JesusJuice: What's to stop the chapter from ignoring the revocation and continuing to camp and give out badges? What power does the national organization actually have?


I don't know how closely the national org has control of things like badge/device supply, but the revoked troop won't be able to use any BSA-owned campsites, go to any BSA-organized events, etc etc.  So the kids won't get the same opportunities, and if they ever move, the new troop will be bound by the rules not to accept any advancement that happened since the date of the charter revocation.
 
2014-04-21 12:34:05 PM  

kid_icarus: The part of this whole debacle that I've never understood is how the hell BSA is still a thing that has continued to exist beyond the 60s.


Because it still is a way for boys to try out fairly dangerous things with a bit of supervision and not kill themselves.  As a side benefit, they learn how to team up to accomplish said dangerous things.
 
2014-04-21 12:34:05 PM  

ciberido: kid_icarus: The part of this whole debacle that I've never understood is how the hell BSA is still a thing that has continued to exist beyond the 60s.

What I don't get is why the Boy Scouts want to play both sides.  Now it's "Allow gay scouts, but don't allow gay scoutmasters."  How is that supposed to satisfy anyone?  Obviously the gay-rights crowd is still going to slam the BSA for discriminating against homosexuals, and the anti-gay crowd is going to still going to slam the BSA for NOT discriminating against homosexuals ENOUGH.

Is there some sort of large contingent of Goldilocks-homophobes the BSA is trying to court?  "This organization is too gay-accepting, but THIS organization is too homophobic!  And THIS organisation here is JUST RIGHT!"

Pick a side, BSA.


I'm going to go out on a limb here and assume they're citing the old "Gay = pedophile" propaganda.
 
2014-04-21 12:34:08 PM  
Cover up pedophiles.
Get rid of the gays.
/Christianity strikes again
 
2014-04-21 12:34:24 PM  

kid_icarus: The part of this whole debacle that I've never understood is how the hell BSA is still a thing that has continued to exist beyond the 60s.


Camping is fun.  Backpacking is fun.  Rafting is fun.  Building fires is fun.  Bow and Arrow, Guns, Climbing Trees, Knots, First Aid, . . ., etc.  Many parents either won't or can't teach their kids to do these things responsibly.  Hence, Scouting survives, and all their bullshiat survives with it.

At least that's why I was involved.
 
2014-04-21 12:35:02 PM  

GoldDude: FAIL for subby.
The troop didn't have a problem with the gay scoutmaster - it was the BSA organization that did.

Your submission should have been: "You think you won't will enjoy scouting without your gay scoutmaster? Let's see how much you enjoy scouting when we reject your charter"


No, subby had it right.  The troop is standing by the scoutmaster, saying they won't enjoy scouting without him.
 
2014-04-21 12:35:43 PM  
Scouting was passed on to me by my dad. He was an eagle scout as a teen and my troop leader as an adult. Unless my son asks to be a scout, he isn't going to be one. I'll look for an alternative when he is old enough.
 
2014-04-21 12:36:02 PM  
Gays don't need to know how to camp, anyway. They need to know how to throw dinner parties...
 
2014-04-21 12:37:10 PM  

JesusJuice: What's to stop the chapter from ignoring the revocation and continuing to camp and give out badges? What power does the national organization actually have?


They own the name.  If the chapter continues to use "Boys Scouts of America", "BSA", "Eagle Scout", etc. on uniforms, on websites, or in printed materials, the lawsuits could be devastating.  On the other hand, scrubbing the local organization of all proprietary references in order to become lawsuit-proof won't be easy either.
 
2014-04-21 12:37:49 PM  

kid_icarus: The part of this whole debacle that I've never understood is how the hell BSA is still a thing that has continued to exist beyond the 60s.


Because the stuff they do is a hell of a lot of fun for a bunch of kids who otherwise might not have the chance.  Yes, the BSA national council is dildos, but the local chapters do really good work in their communities.
 
2014-04-21 12:38:11 PM  
"Oh, Jesus Christ"

redringsofredemption.files.wordpress.com
 
2014-04-21 12:38:20 PM  

ciberido: What I don't get is why the Boy Scouts want to play both sides. Now it's "Allow gay scouts, but don't allow gay scoutmasters."


Well adult males in general are already looked at suspiciously. Add the gay onto that and I guess you're assumed to be a raging rape machine.
 
2014-04-21 12:38:30 PM  

kid_icarus: The part of this whole debacle that I've never understood is how the hell BSA is still a thing that has continued to exist beyond the 60s.


If you mean the national oganization, it's debatable how much use they are beyond running the few national camps, if you mean scouting I have no words. I mean how many boys past the 60's would want to learn how to shoot things, survive in the wilderness, take care of themselves, etc?

/hint, almost all of them
 
2014-04-21 12:38:36 PM  

Skr: Loved being in the scouts, was never taught to hate anything perhaps due to awesome leaders. Great times learning life skills, helping other people, getting stoned in the woods etc.

I'm surprised there hasn't been a large schism with the tolerant and intolerant going their separate trails. Instead you get the SUPER intolerant breaking off to do a SUPER hate powwow or whatever you call Trail Life- Christian-based Trail Life excludes openly gay boys in alternative to BSA


I was in scouts and although I wasn't specifically "taught" to hate anything, we got the Jesus/God thing constantly.  I'm sure many of the leaders were gay-bashers and of course the kids were too, because that's what kids do.  I'm sure they all knew I was agnostic but if I or my family had been militant atheists I'm sure they would have kicked me out.  So while everyone was preaching "Jesus" you had most of the kids doing very un-Christian things like looking at porn and getting stoned.  That's how it seems to be in America, most people are "Christian" by default and in name only.  They ignore the bible-thumpers and do their own thing.
 
2014-04-21 12:39:59 PM  
See, no good has ever come from having a Scout troop associated with a church.
 
2014-04-21 12:40:31 PM  
A scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful and thrifty, brave, clean and reverent unless you're gay.
 
2014-04-21 12:41:15 PM  
It's a reaction to the legal liability.  Look at the various 'gay scoutmaster' tropes posted upthread, it's almost as common as the 'gay pedophile priest' bull.  So the theory is, if they prohibit homosexual men from being scoutmasters (and thus being alone in the woods with groups of young boys) that they will not have to worry so much about potential lawsuits.

The funny thing is that it is an erroneous theory, there is actually no link between child molestation and homosexuality.  Quite a few men who molest young boys are actually straight men when it comes to adult sexual attraction.
 
2014-04-21 12:41:21 PM  

kid_icarus: ciberido: kid_icarus: The part of this whole debacle that I've never understood is how the hell BSA is still a thing that has continued to exist beyond the 60s.

What I don't get is why the Boy Scouts want to play both sides.  Now it's "Allow gay scouts, but don't allow gay scoutmasters."  How is that supposed to satisfy anyone?  Obviously the gay-rights crowd is still going to slam the BSA for discriminating against homosexuals, and the anti-gay crowd is going to still going to slam the BSA for NOT discriminating against homosexuals ENOUGH.

Is there some sort of large contingent of Goldilocks-homophobes the BSA is trying to court?  "This organization is too gay-accepting, but THIS organization is too homophobic!  And THIS organisation here is JUST RIGHT!"

Pick a side, BSA.

I'm going to go out on a limb here and assume they're citing the old "Gay = pedophile" propaganda.


Sort of.

On one side you have the Gay=Abomination Before God (kill it before it spreads)
On the other you have-We are all Children of God. We are unworthy to judge.

The two sides won't reconcile.
 
2014-04-21 12:44:15 PM  

DrunkWithImpotence: It's a reaction to the legal liability.  Look at the various 'gay scoutmaster' tropes posted upthread, it's almost as common as the 'gay pedophile priest' bull.  So the theory is, if they prohibit homosexual men from being scoutmasters (and thus being alone in the woods with groups of young boys) that they will not have to worry so much about potential lawsuits.

The funny thing is that it is an erroneous theory, there is actually no link between child molestation and homosexuality.  Quite a few men who molest young boys are actually straight men when it comes to adult sexual attraction.



Thing is, the BSA makes a huge deal about making sure no adult is ever with a child by himself. Ever. So their rationale is bogus.
 
2014-04-21 12:44:56 PM  
I've always been amused that an organization founded by someone who by all accounts seemed to be obsessed with naked boys1, seems overly concerned about homosexuality.

1. Jeal, Tim. Baden-Powell. Hutchinson. London (1989): 92-98.
 
2014-04-21 12:45:17 PM  

Walker: They're so anti-gay, yet they were founded by a gay. Go figure.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/20/opinion/scoutings-gay-founder.html


Not only was he gay, he was a protector of kittens as well:

You all know what it is at times to have a pleasant feeling in your private parts, and there comes an inclination to work it up with your hand or otherwise. It is especially likely to happen when you see a dirty picture or hear dirty stories and jokes.

Well, lots of fellows from not knowing any better, please themselves in this way until it often becomes a sort of habit with them which they cannot get out of.

Yet I am sure that every sensible boy, if he were told in time of the danger of it, would have the strength not to do it.

So I warn you all about it.

The practice is called 'self-abuse'. And the result of self-abuse is always - mind you, always - that the boy after a time becomes weak and nervous and shy, he gets headaches and probably palpitation of the heart, and if he still carries it on too far he very often goes out of his mind and becomes an idiot.

A very large number of the lunatics in our asylums have made themselves ill by indulging in this vice although at one time they were sensible cheery boys like any one of you.

The use of your parts is not to play with when you are a boy but to enable you to get children when you are grown up and married. But if you misuse them while young you will not be able to use them when you are a man: they will not work then.

Remember too that several awful diseases come from indulgence - one especially that rots away the inside of men's mouths, their noses, and eyes etc.


- "Scouting for Boys," the unintentionally hilariously named and totally not gay book by the ridiculously-named Boy Scouts founder  Robert Stephenson Smyth Baden-Powell, 1st Baron Baden-Powell,Chief Scout of the World.
 
2014-04-21 12:45:26 PM  

Smeggy Smurf: See, no good has ever come from having a Scout troop associated with a church.


That's where we used to meet, Monday nights at a Moravian Church.   We used one of their conference rooms, however at least in my experience, there was no Jesus in our Scout Troop.
 
2014-04-21 12:45:54 PM  
FTA- "Geoff McGrath, an openly gay 49-year-old Eagle Scout,   a few months later, in the Rainier Beach section of Seattle, Washington."

So, this man tried to start a troop even though they didn't change any rules saying he could/couldn't. It had already been in place. I see nothing wrong with this, other than the two-sidedness on BSA's part.

It'd be like me trying to go smoke a cigar in a restaurant. Nope, still can't do it.
 
2014-04-21 12:47:04 PM  
I'll do Camp Fire instead.

Camp Fire's Statement of Inclusion:
Camp Fire works to realize the dignity and worth of each individual and to eliminate human barriers based on all assumptions which prejudge individuals.
Our program standards are designed and implemented to reduce sexual, racial, religious, and cultural stereotypes and to foster positive intercultural relationships. In Camp Fire, everyone is welcome.
 
2014-04-21 12:47:10 PM  

asquian: I'm trying to figure out how the Boy Scouts turned into the Tea Party, while the Girl Scouts somehow manage to be Code Pink(in the eyes of hard right conservatives).

WTFH?
Just let the damn kids learn how to earn merit badges and sell popcorn in front of Wal Marts.


The BSA was taken over by Mormans and Fundies. None of whom give a wet shiat about girls, so the Girls Scouts were ignored by the religiously insane.
 
2014-04-21 12:47:41 PM  
By calling this covenant "new," he has made the first one obsolete; and what is obsolete and outdated will soon disappear.

Except for the bit about homosexuals, because it's icky.  But go ahead and gorge yourself on pork.
 
2014-04-21 12:48:23 PM  

ciberido: kid_icarus: The part of this whole debacle that I've never understood is how the hell BSA is still a thing that has continued to exist beyond the 60s.

What I don't get is why the Boy Scouts want to play both sides.  Now it's "Allow gay scouts, but don't allow gay scoutmasters."  How is that supposed to satisfy anyone?  Obviously the gay-rights crowd is still going to slam the BSA for discriminating against homosexuals, and the anti-gay crowd is going to still going to slam the BSA for NOT discriminating against homosexuals ENOUGH.

Is there some sort of large contingent of Goldilocks-homophobes the BSA is trying to court?  "This organization is too gay-accepting, but THIS organization is too homophobic!  And THIS organisation here is JUST RIGHT!"

Pick a side, BSA.



You make a good point with the "pick a side" argument.  When the National BSA changed policy to allow gay scouts the groups that wanted all gays allowed were not happy and many of the mainline troops were concerned about how to administer and also not happy.

Bottom line is the gay issue, while important to many, is not the main driving factor of the groups that want to impose / implement this on the BSA.  They basically just do not like the BSA.  Period, end of story.  Sad part is that as many have noted already real objective of the BSA is to allow an environment for youth to do things and accomplish things most likely not available to them otherwise.

The BSA's objectives of developing character, citizenship, and personal fitness are what these groups really do not like.
 
2014-04-21 12:48:23 PM  

ransack.:


Somebody was quite the student at west Virginia university
 
2014-04-21 12:48:35 PM  

papatex: FTA- "Geoff McGrath, an openly gay 49-year-old Eagle Scout,   a few months later, in the Rainier Beach section of Seattle, Washington."

So, this man tried to start a troop even though they didn't change any rules saying he could/couldn't. It had already been in place. I see nothing wrong with this, other than the two-sidedness on BSA's part.

It'd be like me trying to go smoke a cigar in a restaurant. Nope, still can't do it.


Copy paste is not my friend...neither is preview.

Article said after the BSA reaffirmed it's ban on gay scoutmasters, this guy tried to start one...
 
2014-04-21 12:49:29 PM  
Looks like we have a new challenger for the glorious title of "real life comic book villains".
 
2014-04-21 12:49:40 PM  

Lord_Baull: DrunkWithImpotence: It's a reaction to the legal liability.  Look at the various 'gay scoutmaster' tropes posted upthread, it's almost as common as the 'gay pedophile priest' bull.  So the theory is, if they prohibit homosexual men from being scoutmasters (and thus being alone in the woods with groups of young boys) that they will not have to worry so much about potential lawsuits.

The funny thing is that it is an erroneous theory, there is actually no link between child molestation and homosexuality.  Quite a few men who molest young boys are actually straight men when it comes to adult sexual attraction.


Thing is, the BSA makes a huge deal about making sure no adult is ever with a child by himself. Ever. So their rationale is bogus.


Which makes sense.  When my wife and I taught a confirmation class for church we were given a training class about the issue and one thing was drilled into us constantly, "NEVER, EVER, be alone or in a private place with a minor.  Not once, not for five minutes."   And really, that is how you protect kids.  The other thing we were taught was that anyone can be a molester, priest, bishop, teacher, cop, coach... anyone.
 
2014-04-21 12:50:57 PM  

asquian: I'm trying to figure out how the Boy Scouts turned into the Tea Party, while the Girl Scouts somehow manage to be Code Pink(in the eyes of hard right conservatives).


You're not the first person to wonder that.  The Atlantic has an article that explores that issue.

To break it down: if your organization's raison d'être is to empower girls and young women, you're going to wind up pretty damn feminist. And since feminism is a very "liberal" ethos, it's basically inevitable that your organization will be politically liberal.

For the Boy Scouts, an organization that exists to promote traditional masculine self-sufficiency is almost equally fated to wind up entwined with a very patriarchal, traditionalist worldview, which in the USA means politically conservative.

The even shorter form: in a system where absolutely everything is perceived as either left or right, anything that supports or promotes girls will be associated with the "left."
 
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