Membership Standards Resolution

The National Council Executive Committee developed a resolution to be presented to the voting members of the National Council at its annual meeting next month. As was expected, there were a variety of opinions on just about every aspect of this topic. While no single policy or approach can accommodate everyone’s views, the Executive Committee unanimously agreed that this is the right step for the BSA. Please use the comments section below to share your thoughts. See you next month!

76 thoughts on “Membership Standards Resolution

    • As an Eagle Scout, brand new District Executive, and soon to have completed PD-L1, I agree with the National Executive Committee decision. Evolve with a changing Nation or the Boy Scouts of America will not represent the values of society. Be proud to practice acceptance and love who you wish. Learn to live without fear of the homosexual lifestyle. Sexual preference is no different than race, creed, or religious affiliation. We are all one human family. Isn’t our organization designed to guide young men into adults? A non-discrimination policy began in the 60s. Thank you Wayne, stand tall, and keep your chin up.

      • As a new district executive you should be aware very quickly that we as the BSA should not take on the “values” of society… We stand true To the long-term values or we throw away our entire brand as the Boy Scouts and will have to rebuild in the next generation…

      • The position that homosexuality is wrong is not the same as a fear of homosexuality.

  1. Mr. Brock, in recently viewing the current video, I was quiet shocked to hear you say that even the idea of this current resolution was in the best interest of our scouting children. How can this be so? What possible benefit can we derive by introducing young boys to this adult topic. It has to be explained in some way and in a manner that conveys that this behavior is acceptable. But it is not and has no place in scouting. The boys should be allowed to be boys and not subject to this adult content. Surely the board does not expect that the homosexual movement will be satisfied with this. Moreover I think this is nothing more than a first step in the direction of total inclusiveness of this movement. I then gather that this is a decision based on monetary pressure. I contend that if the executive board is willing to cave on 100 years of heritage, then I propose we need a new board. Now are we to stay on the “right side if history” unless we continue to support those core values in which the boys scouts were founded by Mr. Baden Powell. I propose a strong stance in support of our current policies and that we should be proud of the same in the public forum. With that I will do all I can to see that this resolution, as well as any like future resolutions, are defeated in support of protecting our nations youth.
    Thank you for your time!

    • I agree with you, Scott! This is not an appropriate topic for young boys and should not be forced upon any parent and child who wishes to become a Scout. I fear that membership and Chartered Organizations will drop off tremendously if this resolution is passed. My son is an Eagle Scout, and I have been a part of the program for a long time…I hate to see this resolution change such a wonderful organization from its core values to worldly pressures. Our youth Should be protected, not subjected to someone else’s whims!

    • Mr Williams, while I agree that sexual orientation is not an issue for chilren and is best left to parents, families, and religious leaders to provide guideance to a boy when he he is ready, you are mistaken about the heritage and core values of the Boy Scouts of America. The current membership policy denying membership to open or avowed homosexuals did not in fact appear until the late 70’s. It was not something that the BSA, or Scouting in general was founded on. Baden-Powell did not propose such discrimination as is evidenced by the membership policies of the rest of the worldwide Scouting organizations.

      A Scout is reverent toward God. He is faithful in his religious duties. He respects the beliefs of others. There are several major religious organizations that contend that we are ALL God’s children and acceptance of people who are gay or lesbian is consistent with the word of God. You may not agree, but how can you be respectful of the beliefs of others while forcing them to viloate the tenets of their faith?

    • I have to agree with Scott. We have so many wonderful Charter Organizations and large ones at that, that have said they would drop scouting if the policy is changed. I don’t blame them, they are protecting our youth, which the Boy Scouts of America should be doing also.

      • No Church or individual is forced to join Scouting, it is a voluntary membership organization so no one is being forced to violate the tenets of their faith.

    • Amen! One might ask a question using the Rotary 4-way test 1. Is it the truth?– for the homosexual youth in scouting it is, but for a majority is is not true as they will have to deal with this dynamic during all Scouting functions; 2. Is it fair to all concerned? — It is not fair to expose young Scouts to this dynamic during Scouting functions. 3. Will it build goodwill and better friendships? It will build goodwill to some who think the homosexual lifestyle is OK, but for a majority of those who participate or have participated in Scouting, it will not. 4. Will it be beneficial to all concerned? No all will suffer because of this proposed BAD decision. Not only will the BSA lose respect of the Conservative Right and the Religious Institutions which have supported the movement since its inception. The BSA will lose financial support in most communities as well as volunteers and Chartered Partners. The BSA will become know for lowering its standards and abandoning its cherished core value system. It will become an weak, much smaller movement.

  2. Making this change for Scouting youth is only the first step in completely changing the membership requirement for youth and adults. With this recomendation, the BSA is stating a young man who claims to be homosexual and is 17 years 11 months of age is fit for membership; however, a young man 18 years of age is not. This is a very bad idea. I fear the decision to make this change will eventually lead to the end of the Boy Scouts of America. Please stand firm and hold to the morals and ideals which made Scouting great over the past 103 years. As you stated in your address, America needs Scouting. I completely agree. Do not destroy it.

    • Agreed, Rob. This is only a first step. An 18, 19 or 20 year-old homosexual young man could be a Venturer and Member of the OA but could not be a leader in a troop? How many of our Venture crews are closely associated with a troop? How could this affect summer and high adventure camps? What kind of non-descrimination/acceptance training will be provided to adult volunteers? Totally CONFUSING and UNMAINTAINABLE!

      As to the funding issue, we will still not accept homosexual adults so we WILL NOT gain new donors or regain any lost funders (like AT&T, UPS…) who include sexual orientation in their non-descrimination policies. We will soon be forced by court cases or lost funding from our current values-based funders to accept anyone.

    • I agree Rob. Intentionally or unintentionally, this “have it both ways” resolution could become the Trojan Horse that takes down Scouting. If we are to be loving and accepting of all (often confused with Tolerance), why not change the policy to allow for Atheists and Secular Humanists too. Doesn’t their “faith” count too? At what point will we stop allowing lines to be crossed and stand firm for values and morals that are greater than the culture’s “norm”? Aren’t we supposed to aspire to high ideals, rather than settle for mediocrity and corruption just because society has become brainwashed into accepting what most of the major faiths have historically identified as an aberration?

  3. This is a step in the right direction, but the hesitation support the youth the day after they turn 19 is not a win-win situation. As you know, the majority of our volunteers were scouts themselves. This is like pulling the “welcome mat” from under their feet the day they bridge to adult.

  4. I believe that this resolution supports the youth of Scouting and the youth is what matters.

    • Agreed, Cilia…our youth is what matters! If, for example, a Scout is concerned that the boy showering next to him at summer camp may be gay, then that would be something he should take up with his adult leader…and the leaders will need to be trained on how to handle the situations…on a case by case basis. Now, that is my question…what kind of training will the adult leaders receive to be ABLE to effectively handle these concerns? Will it be a required training like YPT?

    • The youth are what matters. As an active Assistant Scoutmaster how am I to protect young boys from other boys who are openly and avowed in their sexual attraction? Advances by other boys (especially older boys in leadership positions) is a very real danger with grave consequences. What measures can be taken (that do not distract from the mission of BSA) to prevent the physical, social, and psychological damage to youth for whom I have a great responsibility?

  5. Question: Do we then need to segragate sleeping arrangments and shower times between gay boys and non-gay boys? Just asking.

      • Sal…..You are comparing the Boy Scouts of America with 12 and 13 year old boys to the armies and navies of the world? Seriously? Ken’s question is a valid one. Would we allow our 14 year old daughters to share a tent or shower facility with a 15 year old heterosexual male youth? Surely not. How is that different than a homosexual youth and heterosexual youth sharing the same facilities? If the change is made, new guidelines will be needed. And these new guidelines will cause additional problems for the volunteers who oversee the program. And these additional problems will likely shut down a lot of units.

      • Guy, What does Scouting do all over the world, except in America? What about World Jamborees? Do thay have separate facilities and housing (tents) for people according to their sexual orientation? I fail to see any problem with just putting entire Troops together and having them be supervised by responsible adult leaders, as is done in world Jamborees.

      • Speaking of World Jamborees, can anyone who has been to a world jamboree confirm whether or not condoms are issued to scouts at first aid stations? (As I’m sure most US scouters know, most of the rest of the world has co-ed scouting.) If this is the case, sex has become a part of worldwide scouting. Times….. they are a-changing.

    • If a boy is claiming to be gay, the first question to him should be “How do you know you are gay? Are you saying you are attracted to other boys or are you saying you have acted on it?”
      Saying you are attracted is one thing, but having acted on it would go against the moral standards of Scouting. Would not a boy saying he was having relations with a girl also be going against the moral standards of Scouting?
      I don’t believe the shower or sleeping arrangements would be the problem as they are not supposed to be engaged in any such activities as minors in the first place.

  6. I see this as a step in the right direction, but a failure. Why does the resolution not include adult volunteers?
    I am having an extremely hard time with this. A boy is good enough to attain his Eagle Scout, but once he is 18 he is immediately shunned.
    As a tenured, vested professional, I had to lists of people to contact, conservative and progressive, depending on which way the decision went. This awful half-way point that was devised came out of left field and is only upsetting both sides. All that potential support I had is gone. I had a meeting with a potential District Chair yesterday who could not believe what the proposal came to be and now wants nothing to do with the organization because the BSA did not have the courage and the conviction to stand on one side or the other.

    It is wrong to discriminate against kids, but with adults it is passable? Where is the logic? Where are the morals?

    I am more disappointed in our organization than I have ever been and this is going to make the work of every professional in the field that much more difficult. We will never see membership growth in the BSA with decisions like this being made.

  7. Thanks Wayne,

    Know this has been a difficult trial, both for you and the BSA. Thanks for your leadership.

  8. My understanding is that the Resolution calls for Membership Standards to change for youth, but not for adults. Excuse me, but this is ludicrous. This entire argument has been about ADULTS being able to serve as leaders, and it’s also about Scouts becoming adults and becoming leaders and their giving back what was given them via the Scouting program. We are bogged down in a situation created by ignorance, fear, and religious fanaticism; yet many churches are in support of change because they have congregants and ministers who are homosexual. Why can we not see that we are the only society (with the exception of the Muslim countries; and that’s another story entirely) that refuses to just allow people to be a part of the Scouting Movement? PEOPLE, HUMANS,are what Scouting serves, both youth and adult. Scouting should be for anyone who wants it as long as they behave in accordance to the Scout Oath and Law. This includes any sort of physical contact with ANYONE, not merely homosexuals. We have 2 deep leadership in place and Youth Protection training and policies. What are we worried about? I read these comments about lmmorality and how it will affect our youth. The truth is that there is no place for sex or immorality of any kind in Scouting; EVER. Do we truly believe that allowing people who are openly homosexual into the Movement will result in Ancient Roman type orgies replete with unabashed immorality? Come on! Being homosexual does not equate to immorality, promiscuity, or pedophilia. It simply means a person was born homosexual.My fear, after 56 years in Scouting, is that this issue will be our demise. If we do not change and I mean for everyone, youth and adult, we will no longer exist within five years time. I read the proposal by the Northeast Region. It seems sound, levelheaded, and without prejudice toward anyone. I end by asking these people so fond of quoting the Bible and Jesus: What would Jesus do? What would Jesus say?

    • Yes, Sal. And how can a gay Scout become a gay leader if he’s told by the organization that he’s no longer welcome once he’s reached 18??? I love your points:

      -We are bogged down in a situation created by ignorance, fear, and religious fanaticism
      -PEOPLE, HUMANS, are what Scouting serves
      -There is no place for sex or immorality of any kind in Scouting; EVER
      -Being homosexual does not equate to immorality, promiscuity, or pedophilia

      If parents are concerned about their sons learning about sex/sexuality in Scouting (which is NOWHERE in the program) instead of at home or in church, then they need to step up their game because chances are, their sons have already been exposed to homosexuals! Oh, and what about the girls in Scouting (Venturing and Exploring)? Or do they not count?

    • Sal,

      I also fear that this issue will be the downfall of BSA, but for exactly the opposite reason. I respect the power of sexual attraction. I fear the activist or sexually aggressive boy that will cause great damage to other boys and to the BSA. I am not saying every open and avowed homosexual boy will be like that (not a majority, either). However, they do exist and in significant numbers.

      We have the two deep program to protect boys from adults. What do we need to do in order to offer similar protection from other boys who are open in their sexual attraction? This needs to be a real-world answer, not simply stating that we should not need such protection.

      The question is not whether homosexual boys would benefit from BSA, the question is can they be safely integrated in an effective way without compromising the mission of BSA. I believe they cannot.

  9. Not a step in the right direction, but a big step backwards. Every news report I’ve read or listened to from the gay movement stated that this was a, “good first step” which is showing us that they are just waiting to continue the fight. Lets stand firm on our values and fight on the back of a 100+ year value. Lets use our own research: VOS: 61% support no change, Local Council Study: 50.5% support no change, 3 of 4 regions= no change, The largest Sponsor did not respond according to your notes, although I believe they have, any question read talks from most recent LDS conference, April 2013.

  10. I have been in the habit a couple of times a week of clicking the BSA news link on Scoutnet. I thought the press reaction of the executive committee meeting in February was pretty negative but I have to say that the reaction to this resolution makes the earlier criticisms seem mild. What happens when that 17 year old turns 18 and he wants to be an adult leader? One day it’s OK for him to be in the program and the next not? The press has been and will continue to be all over us (the BSA) on this issue and we (the BSA) are being painted as the bad guy in all of this. The truth is that gay activists are trying and succeeding in using the BSA as a vehicle for social change to further their agenda. The fact that many individuals of faith see homosexuality as sinful, immoral and deviant (that covers a lot of our chartered partners) is exactly the belief and/or attitude that they are trying to bury. Tolerance and respect for their rights is not enough for them, they want total and complete acceptance of their lifestyle and if you have been following their (activists) releases, they are now calling for admission of atheists as well. If we are going to surrender to social pressure or financial pressures then we would do better to get it all over with now and admit both youth and adults. The other option is to maintain the standards we have held for 103 years. This resolution as presented will not ease any of the tensions we have been experiencing. I expect this ‘step’ will probably just increase the pressures from certain special interest and activist quarters and will lead to additional ‘steps’.

  11. What about Venturing and the Order of the Arrow? Youth membership goes until 21. We would be able to accept their youth membership at the same time as declining an adult application.

  12. The piper is leading the scouts towards the end of the scouts and off the proverbial bridge.
    First, you allow gay children.
    Second, you will give in to gay leaders.
    Guess what, next they will want you to deny God into the scouts.
    I fear and pray for all that will not man up and do what is right. Isn’t that what scouting is all about? Making men out of boys?
    When you don’t put God first, nothing else matters because nothing will work.
    Quit praising the goodness of Scouting and praise and honor God.
    No, this is not about not caring about others, but just the opposite.
    Does a man leave his house with the door unlocked when he knows the burglar is coming?

  13. I see this decision as a half measures decision also. What happens to a boy that is open gay and he turns 18 and wants to be a leader in Scouts? According to your recommended resolution that boy would be banned from Scouts at age 18.

    I don’t believe boy scouts of america is in the sex business (we don’t need to ask young boys about there sexual preferences or choices). However, I don’t believe we should discriminate against youth or adults for their choice of lifestyle. (Even in our Catholic church Fr Kunz read a letter from the Bishop about how the fact that Jesus loves people – all people. And welcomes all with open arms. It does not mean we have to condone their lifestyle or agree with it.

    My thought!

  14. I would like to say I am disappointed about this going only so far and then stopping but that is not the case. I am glad that the resolution came as far as it did. Yes I believe this needs to go further as it seems wrong to discriminate against adults like this but we need to pull back a bit and look at this. Whenever there has been big changes in ideology things didn’t change immediately. It took time for people to come to grips with the change such as blacks and women having the ability to vote. Lets see this as what it really is, a compromise between two groups with opposing views. Both have the right to their opinion but the fact that there are two groups that are large enough to have their view heard means that there will be fall out no matter what decision is made. Kudos goes to National to try and balance and respect the choices of each side. In the mean time I will continue to say that scouting shall endure no matter which way this goes as a necessary organization that offers youth a quality learning experience to help them become better people.

  15. Not good. Can’t support it. After surveying all constituents (Charter Partners, donors, volunteers), the majority of Councils in 3 of the 4 Regions said “Do NOT change the policy.” This is simply a smoke screen, a foot in the door to embracing the whole package.

    • Did you see the results for the other Regions? I haven’t seen any other councils survey results. So how do you know that the majority have sided against said resolution?

  16. “Who wrote the Bible” is a question that can be definitively answered by examining the biblical texts in light of the external evidences that supports its claims. 2 Timothy 3:16 states that “All scripture is inspired by God….” In 2 Peter 1:20-21, Peter reminds the reader to “know this first of all, that no prophecy of scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation, … but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God.” The Bible itself tells us that it is God who is the author of His book. The Bible also tells us that homosexuality is a sin, as well as effeminate behavior (Rom. 1: 26-27; 1 Cor. 6: 9-11). Just because Jesus’ red letter words do not say so is not an indication that it is acceptable. We should not, as an organization that has a religious principle and statement that we agree to live by, believe otherwise, simply because it is convenient. I have family members who are homosexual; I love them deeply. I pray for their revelation that their lifestyle goes against the teaching of the Bible and they will come back onto the correct path. As far as I know, there has been no conclusive scientific evidence that homosexuality is a natural part of our being. We all know that women outnumber men in our world, so it is not a matter of females not being available. It is difficult as a Christian man to accept homosexuality as normal, and we should not allow others to propagate those theories through their personal agendas to allow homosexuality into Scouting. As a 17-year tenured professional, these are troubling times; but I cannot accept homosexuality as normal, and no amount of chest thumping by those who propose otherwise will ever get me to believe it is normal and acceptable.

  17. I came here from a City Government position specifically to get away from the gay general manager and his hired friends. I gave up that position because I thought the BSA would never accept homosexual activity of any kind. Guess I was wrong and just the proposal of it makes me glad I am retiring very soon.

  18. How old are you naysayers? Have you read the numerous comprehensive studies on this subject? Although you may feel that you understand youth of today, you are quite mistaken. The majority of those who oppose the BSA’s policy change are 45 and over. Our nation’s youthful citizenry is very open and accepting of the LGBT community. As an organization that represents the best interests of American youth, it’s time we rule in their favor, and stop fighting amongst ourselves.

    In addition, if you are seriously equating sexual abuse with gay individuals, you need to reread every thoughtful analysis on this topic because there simply is no connection. It is a widely held misconception. Please educate yourself on these matters before presenting arguments. It only makes you sound ignorant to the rest of us.

    • The common thought around my council is to just be patient, and let all the old dinosaurs die off in the next two decades. Scouting will be much the worse for the delay. There are plenty of young adult alumni who want to be a part of Scouting, but will not until the policy changes.

      No matter the outcome of the vote in May, this issue will not be over at all.

  19. The way I read the “Listening Phase” information over 50% stated they want no change. so why are we not listening and still asking for a change?

  20. Anonymous Scouter at 3:53, Not that I don’t want you to express your opinions but I wonder if you would mind posting under a different anonymous name so that people don’t confuse our comments?

    Anonymous Scouter at 2:33

  21. The resolution as proposed indicates that youth members (which includes Venturers) would not be excluded merely because they expressed the opinion of having a same-sex attraction, but only for sexual behavior. This is consistent with the tenets of most major faith groups (I have yet to hear of someone being asked to leave any church because he said he was gay, but only when he acts upon those feelings).

    As a practical person, I support the rationale that each chartered organization should have the ability to decide for itself who is, or is not, morally straight (regardless of the specific concern). But in this case, it appears that option as currently proposed will not secure the support of the majority of the voting members of the BSA.

    The idea of treating everyone as individuals, and not labeling people by categories (particularly something which could be one thing today and another tomorrow), is something we should all support.

  22. Listen to yourselves. I…. I….. I….. I….. I….. I….. What would Jesus do? Really? Well, first, he didn’t start his sentences with “I.” When he prayed for his Father’s will, he accepted what happened as His Father’s will. He didn’t question it. He didn’t throw tantrums. He didn’t pick up his marbles and leave the playground folks.

    Try to reverse the roles for just one darn minute could you? What if you were in the shoes of our Executive Board? Would you have done things any differently? You blow your smoke and you beat your chest… you have no idea the years of their lives that have been shortened over the time they have spent on this resolution. You haven’t seen their hair turning gray right in front of your eyes or watched them get on and off airplanes and leave their desks at midnight every night.

    Get over yourselves! The media doesn’t need the LGBT and the right-winger’s… all they need is to divide us and get us ranting and railing against each other in a “civil-war,” and they’ll have what they need to split us like the North and South all over again.

    Please! What would Jesus do? He’d be quiet. He’d pray and BELIEVE that what happened was the will of the Father. He’d support the will of the Father and then, he’d be ready to take the next step. If the next step is all-inclusiveness… then… retire, change jobs… move on… but, please quit ragging, railing, lamenting, and ranting about what you can only see from one side.

    • What would Jesus do? HE WOULD SPEAK THE TRUTH. Nearly all of His condemnation was for the religious leaders who knew God’s Word but put themselves and their culture ahead of doing God’s will. JESUS LED (like we are supposed to do in Scouting) in loving people and hating their sins (a turning away from God and His ways). He DID NOT follow the crowd.

      • Romans 1:22-32 (KJV)
        22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools , 23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. 24 Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: 25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator , who is blessed for ever. Amen. 26 For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: 27 And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another ; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet . 28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient ; 29 Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, 30 Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31 Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: 32 Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.

  23. Wow. Simply . . . wow.

    The claim that this resolution is being forwarded in the best interest of the children so defies logic it is incomprehensible.

    When I told my son, a 16-year-old Life Scout, solid Catholic, and All-State athlete, of this decision, he was stunned and after a moment’s reflection said, “Dad, if this is an ‘either-or’ deal, this decision is even WORSE than allowing the adults in. The adults are bound by child protection guidelines. A Scout who brags about being a homosexual, on the other hand, would have access to EVERYTHING. Showers. Bathrooms. Tents. . . . . ”

    Which begs the question of our leadership that professes its overriding concern about “the children”: Do you all unanimously agree that a 16- or 17-year-old self-professed homosexual–a man, let’s face it, in almost everything but experience–should have unfettered access to shower, toilet, and sleeping facilities being used by 10- and 11-year-old boys?!??

    I have to say that I agree with a study recently cited in the Washington Post that if this decision is approved, it will result in a net loss of 300,000 Scouts who will say “adios” to the BSA. It will be the end of the BSA as we know it.

    I do not see how this Scoutmaster, charged with the protection of all the boys in his chartering organization’s program, could guarantee his ability to do so if the resolution were approved. I would be forced in good conscience to leave such an unhinged organization as well. I would do so with a very heavy heart.

    Voting members . . . courage! Protect the kids! You have the power in late May to stop this madness, which amounts to organizational suicide.

  24. I have already commented on the proposal to my Council Exec. So, I will not comment here.

    However, why is our Scout Executive not wearing a uniform. What did BP say about a uniformed leader? You expect us to wear one, why are you not wearing one. Are we not to set by example? Personally, I am tired of seeing our Scout Executives w/o a uniform. Do as I say, not as I do.

  25. So are we to send them their eagle packet at 18… With a letter kicking them out of Scouting the next day? This is unacceptable and will not work long term! And will be the end of scouting as we know it… It will just tick off the conservative and cause them to vote with their feet and leave… While still not pacifying the progressives and they don’t fund us anyway. This is bad for all boys now and in the future…

  26. Wow Sara – you hit the nail on the head. Our volunteer executive board and professional management are human beings first. Even they have different views on the issue. This has been incredibly hard on each and every one of them. Until you have walked in their shoes, I don’t think anyone has the right to attack them, demand their resignations, or in any other way discredit the hard work and long hours they have put into bringing this resolution to the voting members of the national council. Let’s let the voters vote, accept their vote as your representatives, and then get back to the business the BSA was created to do and that’s serve the youth of our country.

  27. Whatever the outcome of our vote, it will be seen by some as a win & by others as a loss. Those who oppose Scouting will foster divisiveness no matter the vote. Those who support what Scouting does to build young people, build communities & build our society, will continue to “do their best, to do their duty, to their God & country.” Serve youth through Scouting or quit & serve youth through other organizations. Either way, don’t give up on serving others! WWYD – What Will You Do?

  28. What is in the best interest of our children is to be the basis of the decision? Opposing views… Contradictory studies… Generational differences…Differences in views on morality…So much emotion and passion being expressed on the decision to come. If we are really making the decision based on the best interest of our children consider this: In the 103 year history of the BSA there has never been a single case of an exclusively heterosexual male, youth or adult, sexually abusing another male, youth or adult, nor will there ever be in whatever future is left for the BSA.

    • Sal Domani says:
      Your comment is awaiting moderation.
      April 26, 2013 at 12:39 pm

      I don’t understand your comment. “… In the 103 year history of the BSA there has never been a single case of an exclusively heterosexual male, youth or adult, sexually abusing another male, youth or adult, nor will there ever be…” I have been in Scouting 56 years and I’m sorry to say there have been certain indecent incidences in camp and the perpetrators were heterosexual, married, with children, middle aged, White males who were openly anti-homosexual in their stated philosophy, but not in their actions.Where do you think all this Youth Protection Training stems from? The youth need to be protected from predators WHATEVER their orientation.

  29. I do not intend to comment on my personal thoughts on this, but what i do hope is that, if approved, this policy change will allow us, the Boy Scouts to do what we have always tried to do, develop youth through the aims and methods of Scouting.

    Does a youths sexual orientataion mean that he does not deserve the oportunities to benifit from our program? I think not.

    I am concerned that omiting adults from this policy is only postponing another such controversy in the near future.

    However, it is critical to remember that this program is for the YOUTH, and regardless of what changes or stays the same, they are the ones who should not be affected.

  30. I like Noelle’s comments….
    -There is no place for sex or immorality of any kind in Scouting; EVER (not between adults or boys or forbid adult/boy)
    -Being homosexual does not equate to immorality, promiscuity, or pedophilia

    Being gay doesn’t mean you are a pedophile. In all research, the % of people who are is the same between someone who is straight vs someone who is gay.

    This is a lose/lose situation no matter what anyone does and like people are saying, this is a voluntary choice to join or not.

    I just hope that, whatever, is done is for the best of the BOYS!

    Yours in Scouting!
    District Vice Chair and Asst. Scoutmaster

  31. You haven’t been listening. You sent out a very skewed survey designed to elicit the answers that would support the proposal you wanted to put forth. No one wants boys to be discriminated against. Nor do we want our sons sharing tents or showers with boys who will be sexually attracted to them in an environment of sexual openness, which is what this proposal will promote. While it is true that no sexual behavior is acceptable in Scouting, at this point there is also no flirting and no sexual tension. If this proposal is adopted, that is what will change.

  32. “I haven’t lost faith, because the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.”
    -Martin Luther King Jr.

  33. This is not good news for the BSA. Having two standards, one for adults, and another for youth is a terrible way to do business. Talk about a house divided. This house will not stand.

    In the tradition values of the BSA is where there is safety, not in the whim of the month, that so many are caught up in today.

    I am also most disappointed with the way this whole discussion came about. It really felt like the National Key 3 and Executive Board were sneeking around hoping that no one would find out, until they were ready to implement the new policy, in spite of what the majority of scouters thought. My Scout Executive found out about the possibility of a change through our local newspaper! No communication for National at all! We he was told, it was that he would support this policy, and fall into line. I will not fall into line for such a poor policy as this is.

    I am joining the call for the resignation of the National Key 3, and those on the Executive Board that support this resolution.

    We need to keep our taditional values.

    • I second or third or what ever it is that if we are divided we will fall… It is time to take a stand for traditional values. I do not have space and a executive board and three that would lead us down this road. I have been with scouting as a pro for 10 years and as a volunteer for over 30 before that…it is not okay to be divided as an organization, And if we go all the way we will lose all of our conservative donors/members/adult volunteers they might as well go join the Awanasa club… What need will they have of our program then?

  34. I have noticed from time to time, volunteers making comments on the WBtv broadcasts to employees. I just googled this broadcast which has garnered some pretty strong comments and discovered a link that anyone can click on and watch the broadcast, read the comments and add their own. Anyone who thinks that they are just sharing their thoughts in house should think again. Issues that divide us can sometimes bring about comments that we would rather not share with the general public as we sift through serious issues. Just a thought but we need to weigh our words and always know that anything we put out there can and probably will find its way to the public at some point.

    • The problem is, we are already a house divided. Despite what the VOS reports say, there is a vast split between older and younger volunteers, and geographically across the country. 10 years ago, this conversation was not going to happen, and today is is very controversial internally. In 10 years though, we will look back shamefully and ask “what took so long to change”.

      • Will we last 10 years? I’m beginning to doubt it. I cannot understand the problem here. Scouting is for anyone who wants it all over the world, wherever Scouting takes place, with the exception of Muslim countries and America. My goodness. When that first Eagle said he was gay, we ought to have said, “So he’s Gay. So what? He’s ONE OF US!” But no, we got all icky over it, made the fellow a pariah among Scouts, and here we are. His “coming out” didn’t cause this debacle, our fearful, ignorant, self-righteousness did. This attitude of self-righteous indignation at the lifestyle of another human being; another of God’s creations is what, to my mind, is a sin. Who will cast the first stone? Who are we to judge anyone? I do not judge anyone on either side of this “issue,” but it seems to me we need to find the way to be all encompassing without judging. And I believe if we don’t, we won’t last 10 years. I doubt we’ll last five. The general attitude is for accepting everyone. It is not my place to point an accusing finger and say, That man is a sinner.” However, it is my responsibility to ensure “that man”; ANY MAN; ANY HUMAN, not harm anyone left in my charge. We have Youth Protection Standards and Training to help us protect the youth. We can do this without needing to make other people “undesirable.”

      • I’m not sure about lasting 10 years, at least in our current form. At least our California Councils won’t, since the state is working hard at taking away our non profit status, for being discriminatory. (A whole separate issue, and will tie up the courts for years).

        My prediction on what BSA will be, if we don’t change, is a shadow of our former selves. BSA National will become a copy right and printing organization, and license them selves to various religious groups. So while people might wear the BSA name and uniform, what we’ll end up having is the LDS Scouts of America, the Catholic Scouts of America, Methodist Scouts of America, etc. Those religious groups should replace the current council structure in many areas, even though they would overlap. There might be some over arching scouting functions, a Jamboree, or even Camporees in a local area, but the primary influence and driver will be the religious sponsors.

        It would be messy, and a huge host of political issues, to disband various councils (not even merge old ones together, just to get rid of the council structure), but if that means a cleaner legal withdrawal from areas where a discriminatory BSA is not welcomed, it might be cost advantageous. Right now, we have councils that can not raise enough money to support themselves, and it isn’t’ the fault of a Scout Executive or a DE, rather that the population won’t join BSA, and that business won’t support. No matter how many councils are merged, so long as the population and culture won’t support BSA, it’ll never be self sustaining, and will be doomed to failure.

  35. I said it in the other thread, might as well say it here too …

    In order for the BSA to take a stance regarding the morals of human sexuality, then the policy must be addressed evenly. If it will exclude all adult homosexuals, then it must also exclude all adulterers, all sexually active single males, and all those who seek to “recruit” celibate youth into a sexually-active lifestyle — homosexual OR heterosexual. Make no mistake, I have encountered all of these types of people in my Scouting career. For the sordid details, please see .

    BSA is chartered by all kinds of organizations: Christian churches, other faiths, schools, military brotherhood organizations such as VFW, the American Legion, and more. These organizations are filled with fantastic and flawed humans including leaders and followers, spouses and divorcees, teetotalers, alcoholics, addicts and, yes, gays.

    Interpreting sexual morality is the domain of religion, but even different denominations do not all define morality on this issue the same way. BSA’s concern should remain in support of the chartering organization and its specific policies on this issue. Let the chartering organization then come to grips with the issue itself.

    And for those of you who pay attention to the teachings of Jesus, it was He who said: “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone.”

  36. We must hold a standard of conduct for “open and avowed”. We already allow participation of scouts with same sex attraction so long as it is not open and avowed (no change is being proposed). The resolution mandates that all troops MUST accept open and avowed homosexual youth regardless of chartering organization beliefs.

    Forget about the morality question for a moment, what about the safety issue? How do we put boys with open and avowed sexual attraction in close sleeping quarters with other boys? BSA states that 70% of sexual assault is boy-on-boy with the current membership policy. What does this change do to the ability to safely conduct a campout?

  37. Thank you to everyone who has posted their thoughts on this video (and topic in general). While your views are welcome, it is difficult to continue moderating comments from videos posted several months ago while continuing to work on new episodes. This becomes especially apparent when specific questions are posted, and we are unable to answer them in a timely fashion. Therefore, rather than posting your question or comment here, we are asking that you contact your local Scout executive directly with any pertinent questions about policies, procedures, and the like. Thank you again for your feedback.

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