Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Why I stay with Boy Scouts with their anti-gay Policy

I am an adult member of the Boy Scouts of America, a Scouter.  My son is in the Wolf Den of the Cub Scouts and I am his Den Leader.  The BSA has drawn a hard line in the sand opposing the participation of homosexuals and atheists.  It is a policy that I strongly disagree with.

So why do I not only remain with the BSA but allow my son to participate?  I believe that the BSA is extremely valuable and a fantastic addition to the lives of many boys.  Also, because change will only come from within.  All the outside pressure in the world will not change BSA policy.  The voices of its members, rising up will eventually enact that change.  Take for example Ryan Andreson.  He was denied his Eagle Scout and had his membership revoked when it was discovered he is gay.  This made national news.  Hundreds of thousands of people signed petitions to give him the award.  This outside pressure is fantastic and necessary.

But then came the internal pressure.  The review board of the Mt. Diablo-Silverado Council violated BSA policy and advanced his application.  Scouters from within the organization, in an act of civil disobedience, challenged the policy from within.  Where will it go?  Who knows.  But many Scouters and Scouts (including me) continue to send letters to the BSA office and express their opinions in BSA surveys and eventually our voices will be heard.  Without those internal voices they would not change.  And that is why I stay in spite of the policy.