Just my rambling thoughts about being gay and Mormon

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

A scout is....not very honest

July 18, 2012
Dear Boy Scouts of America (BSA),

You suck. I'll explain why.

First, I used to think you were pretty OK. I grew up through scouting. I was a Cub Scout. I am an Eagle Scout. I have participated in just about every type of activity sponsored by BSA. I can still say the Scout Oath and Law from memory. This very day, I gave money to my local scout troop to put a flag up in my yard on national holidays.

However, I stopped giving money to the national Friends of Scouting campaign years ago because of your policies. I hoped that you would see the damage that you are doing in excluding gay scouts and leaders. Your recent decision to continue this nonsense makes me want to return my merit badges. 

I know what it's like to go through scouting being different. It was difficult for me. I often felt like I was not good enough. I had deep feelings of being different but it took me a long time to figure out why. What I learned in scouting certainly influenced me to stay in the closet and live in shame for a long time. There are many gay or sexually questioning scouts today. You are actively harming them.

By continuing your policy of discrimination against gay people you are stating that BSA is around to help boys become men only if they fit into your homophobic view of the world. 

You are affirming to the boys the falsehood that being gay is a choice. Why else would you exclude them, certainly not for being who they are? If this is not true, why not exclude tall boys or redheads? 

I particularly remember scouting as a place to help boys who did not have a father available to them. Most gay boys have even less opportunity to associate with a male mentor than fatherless boys. You are abandoning a group of boys who need mentoring. 

Even worse, you are not just abandoning these boys you are actively harming them by your prejudice. Your attitude leads to bullying. BSA, you are responsible for encouraging bullying by failing to actively teach boys that gays are OK. You are teaching homophobia, discrimination, and hate. No child is born homophobic, it's a learned trait and you are encouraging this nonsense.

Your example and attitude teaches boys that they should not be true to themselves. It teaches them that they should adopt an artificial character to fit into what you will accept.

Your example and attitude teaches boys who will grow up to be gay that they are not normal or good. It strongly reinforces that they are not good enough because they quickly learn that you will not accept them if they are true to themselves.

For gay boys the BSA is not:
courteous, or

Like I said, you suck.

Next time I go camping I'm going to take my old scout awards and badges and toss them into the campfire.


P.S. LDS church, as the largest sponsor of BSA, you suck too for not wielding some influence to change this short sighted and ridiculous policy.

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