As the vote nears, it looks more and more like the Boy Scouts of America will adopt a “compromise” plan that will radically alter the organization and its future.
Back in January, the Boy Scouts national leadership declared a possible policy change that would allow self-identified homosexuals to become Scouts and Scout leaders. They postponed the decision until a large group of scout leaders could vote on it, at the national council in May.
Since that announcement, numerous Scout supporters have urged the leadership to stand fast against the homosexual advocates, but a new proposal released on April 19th indicates that they have succumbed to the pressure. While maintaining – for the time being – a prohibition against openly homosexual leaders, the resolution provides: “No youth may be denied membership in the Boy Scouts of America on the basis of sexual orientation or preference alone.”
Under this proposal, homosexuals are free to become Scouts. Unlike the original proposal, which left the ultimate decision about homosexual members and leaders up to the local chapters, this would be a universal policy for all chapters.
The “compromise” gained steam last week when it received a lukewarm endorsement by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The Mormon church sponsors more Boy Scout troops than any other religious organization.
But this “compromise” comes at a high price, for it requires the Scouts to betray its own oath.
The Scout Oath reads: “On my honor I will do my best, to do my duty to God and my country, and to obey the Scout Law; to help other people at all times; to keep myself physically strong, mentally awake, and morally straight.” The Scouts have historically viewed homosexual conduct as being inconsistent with the morally straight pledge.
The new policy reflects a change in thinking, creating a new set of values for the Boy Scouts and a quandary with the current oath. This oath will either be reinterpreted to include a false notion of “morally straight,” altered to remove the phrase “morally straight,” or perhaps, in light of the fresh philosophy, abandoned altogether.
In any event, the oath will not be the same and neither will the Scouts. The policy represents one foot in the door, with the other foot following behind. Having abandoned the idea that homosexual behavior runs counter to their values, the Scouts will no longer have a basis for excluding homosexual leadership.
Before our very eyes, the Boys Scouts of America are transforming into something very different. If the policy is adopted, the Scouts will no longer be a group encouraging boys to be morally straight. They will promote the morally crooked instead.
Posted by Nate Kellum