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Topic: Philly sticks it to Boys Scouts over their gay ban...

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Subject: Philly sticks it to Boys Scouts over their gay ban...
Date Posted: 10/19/2007 6:00 AM ET
Member Since: 7/5/2006
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Boy Scouts’ rent hiked after gay ban - US Life - MSNBC.com

Philadelphia says it can't legally offer reduced rent to discriminatory group   PHILADELPHIA - The city has decided that the Boy Scouts chapter here must pay fair-market rent of $200,000 a year for its city-owned headquarters because it refuses to permit gay Scouts......

I've never liked the boy scouts (gay ban especially), so I did a little cheer this  morning to see a community stand up to the bigotry they propgate with their policies. :)

Date Posted: 10/19/2007 7:02 AM ET
Member Since: 11/10/2006
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About time a stand was taken against them for this absurd policy.

Date Posted: 10/19/2007 8:13 AM ET
Member Since: 12/1/2005
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Sweet!!  Go Philly!!

Date Posted: 10/19/2007 9:43 AM ET
Member Since: 1/11/2006
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yay i'm proud to be here (today, that is)

Date Posted: 10/19/2007 10:27 PM ET
Member Since: 6/29/2007
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You know, United Way in our area (Triangle area, NC) stopped funding Boy Scouts several years ago due to this fact....

Rita.

Date Posted: 10/20/2007 7:42 AM ET
Member Since: 7/5/2006
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great, Rita :)   Around here the Boys Scouts are the be all and end all of boyhood (gag!) 

L. G. (L)
Date Posted: 10/20/2007 9:52 AM ET
Member Since: 9/5/2005
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YAY!!  I hate BSA.

Date Posted: 10/20/2007 9:05 PM ET
Member Since: 4/20/2006
Posts: 5,716
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Hmmm.   Well, I certainly don't agree with their policy, but my son is a Cub Scout and I am a Den Leader and we do a lot of great things for the community and for the boys.  Our pack doesn't practice or promote discrimination of any kind.  On the leadership form, it doesn't ask anything about sexual orientation, so they must have a "don't ask, don't tell" policy.  The only requirements are you can't be a criminal and you have to take leader training and first aid.

I can understand not wanting to support Boy Scouts the orginization, but there are plenty of packs out there that don't share those same ideals and that are doing great things with the boys that are getting them off the couch, into the community, and building their self esteem.  I just wanted to throw my two cents in there.

Date Posted: 10/21/2007 2:02 PM ET
Member Since: 9/23/2006
Posts: 6,362
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Yes, if you were ever in a club in Philly and saw a guy who waited to make sure his female friend's friend got home safely because she'd been drinking, it might have been my son.  One of those lousy former Eagle Scouts.

Date Posted: 10/23/2007 11:41 AM ET
Member Since: 1/4/2006
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IMHO  -  which is sometimes way off base:

What I think of when I hear Boy Scouts - is the teaching of American ideals - honesty, integrity, helpful, etc

Then I heard (long ago) that the Boy Scouts do not allow gays and do not support gay rights.  What happened to equality - not to mention liberty and justice for ALL?

How distressing to be a cub scout and then a boy scout, only to find out that the group you belong to is actively against you?  The badges you earned and were so proud of and were the "American Way" weren't intended for you (a gay boy) at all.  Seems like there is a disconnect in there somewhere.  It's almost as if the "American Way" is for everyone else; but you.

Colleen

Date Posted: 10/23/2007 1:46 PM ET
Member Since: 4/20/2006
Posts: 5,716
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Unfortunately, the Boy Scouts has religious ties and I'm sure that is why they are not supporting gay rights.  I'm not religious at all, but I still want my boys in Boy Scouts for other reasons.  The Boy Scouts aren't my children's first influence anyway, I am.  One of the things the Boys Scouts teaches it how to overcome adversity and build character strength....for these boys that leave Scouts and have to face the world as young gay men in a time when it is not acceptable to most, these will be useful skills, even if they did come from a group that is silently not supportive.  So I think the pros outweigh the cons in Scouts.  Doesn't mean that their stance on gay rights should not be challenged, I just don't think it makes them a horrible orginization.  Same thing with the YMCA.  Our YMCA is a religious orginization.....we're not religious and while I doubt that they are approving of homosexualtiy or a lot of the things that I think are acceptable, I'm not going to keep my kids from playing sports.

Scouts leaders are made up of everyday moms and dads, they aren't hand picked and asked to state their views on homosexuality.  We don't even teach them things pertaining to moral issues....the things we try to teach them are mainly about safety, responsibility, and respect.  We just went on a camping trip recently where they got to go fishing, do archery, build race cars in teams and have a race, cook, etc.  In our meeting last night, we talked about famous Americans and talked about the different states, what their flags looked like, etc.  Next week is our Halloween party and then we will begin working on adopting a family for Thanksgiving and another for Christmas through the Salvation Army (which also probably does not support gay rights but does do good things for the community nonetheless).  I think it's good that we are teaching the Scouts compassion.

Anyway, I'm really proud of our Scouts and what they are doing, and that they are taking the time that they could have been using watching TV and playing video games and coming to our meetings to learn things and do things for others.  Some of these Scouts may grow up one day and become advocates for things like the Gay and Lesbian community.  I certainly like to think that as a Den Leader I am instilling good values in them.  I just wanted to share these things because while I absolutely don't support any group being anti-gay, I want people to know that this is in no way trickling down to the leaders and Scouts.  These Scouts are good kids and work hard.  So please be supportive of them, if not the orginization itself.

 

 

Date Posted: 10/23/2007 1:47 PM ET
Member Since: 4/20/2006
Posts: 5,716
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Rita, I live in northern NC and we still get money from the United Way, although not as much as we used to.  They told us that their resources are severely stretched right now and a lot of people/organizations are asking for money.

Date Posted: 10/24/2007 1:48 AM ET
Member Since: 9/23/2006
Posts: 6,362
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I don't particularly agree with the BSA stand on gay rights; it is true that they are a religious organization, but it was never really stressed here.  It's not a perfect organization either, but I don't think it deserves to be bashed.  There are a lot of areas, such as ours, where there aren't many alternative activities for boys and Scouting fills a need.  It's mostly run by volunteers and there are some great people there.  The Scouts do community service and collect food for the food bank.

As far as the Philly situation, I don't know anything about the Philly BSA, but did they replace it with another organization that serves young boys and teens?  I just happen to think that Philly has a lot bigger problems than the BSA. 

L. G. (L)
Date Posted: 10/24/2007 2:33 AM ET
Member Since: 9/5/2005
Posts: 12,412
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I could never support a group - in any way -  that didn't give equal rights to all.  Plus, they discriminated against Unitarians by not allowing them to wear their religious badges:

http://www.religioustolerance.org/bsa_3.htm

I don't care of the local group complies or not - it's still the BSA policy and it still sucks.

 

 

Date Posted: 10/24/2007 10:43 AM ET
Member Since: 4/20/2006
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Well, as far as the religion thing goes, you can't expect to join a religious group and not hear things like God said in the pledge.  I just ignore the religious stuff and when we covered the part in the book about faith, while I touched on people having faith in God, I made it clear that faith wasn't all about God.  I don't consider atheism or agnostism to be a religion....I consider it a lack of, so I wouldn't be interested in getting a patch that refelected my views as a non-believer.  But others may feel differently.  For people that feel that strongly, Boy Scouts is probably not for them.  The religious patch is optional anyway....it's something that you earn at home or through your church.

L. G. (L)
Date Posted: 10/24/2007 12:36 PM ET
Member Since: 9/5/2005
Posts: 12,412
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Well, in this case it wasn't a matter of belief or non-belief - it was a case of the children wanting to wear their UU patches and then being told they couldn't.  That's what set off the problems.  UUism doesn't preach doctrine and since BSA couldn't wrap their minds around the concept that one could be UU and still be Christian, or a believer, or religious, they blanketly denied all UU children from wearing their patches.  It's just ignorance.

I could never ignore a core belief simply to reap the benefit of some other aspect of a program - like you said, if people feel strongly about it, BSA isn't  for them.    That goes for the gay issue as well as the religious issue.  It goes beyond not just wanting to participate for me - for me their stance is morally wrong.  So I don't support them in any way, shape or form, and when they come to my door for donations of canned goods and Christmas Tree pick-up, I tell them why I don't donate to them, because I feel they need to know.  YMMV, of course!