Scout’s Honor?

BSA

Oh man. Just catching up on news in the parent world. What’s this about the Boy Scouts prohibiting gay troop leaders? Are they for serious? I always took for granted that the scouts were a gay-friendly organization. Consider:

• Every year the scouts convene at a jamboree. I’m racking my brains for a word with more gaylord cred than jamboree. Maybe cubmaster? Hmmm. “Hey gang! Come along to the jamboree! We’re gonna have ourselves a gay old time!” I can totally picture someone saying that.

• In an apparent effort to make Nathan Lane look macho, the Boy Scouts all wear neckerchiefs. If they were any campier they’d be the Village People.

• Boy Scouts greet each other with a three-finger salute. Make of it what you will.

• The scouts offer a merit badge in water sports. Frankly, my internal editor hesitates to even type those words. For sheer raunchiness, water sports is up there with rodeo sex, dirty Sanchez, and duck-butter.

• Oh wait, I finally came up with a word that’s gayer than jamboree. Ready? Webelos.

Okay so I’m having a laugh at the Boy Scouts’ expense. But their hypocritical policy invites ridicule. After agonizing over this issue, the Boy Scouts of America finally decided to allow gay scouts, while still prohibiting gay leaders.

I’m so disappointed. The BSA actually had a chance to lead, and instead they tried to strike a compromise between bigotry and acceptance. That’s so 1990s. (Think don’t ask/don’t tell.)

In a way it’s sad to see this 103 year-old organization try to adapt to changing times. They’re like your endearing-but-bigoted grandpa who knows he’s out of step with contemporary mores, but can’t overcome the prejudices of his generation.

(Also like your grandpa, the Boy Scouts have an affinity for polyester, high waist bands, and a sharp crease in their shorts.)

Sure it sucks that a youth organization must grapple with adult issues like sexuality and discrimination. But you don’t model leadership by ducking difficult issues.

The Girl Scouts seem to be managing just fine without excluding anyone based on sexual preference. No hand wringing. No soul searching. Just a stated commitment to diversity and inclusiveness, plus an across-the-board rejection of all discrimination. How refreshing is that?

So man-up, BSA. Grow a pair. Or better still, show some genuine bravery and follow the girls’ lead.

featured image by Kaitlin Peterson via flickr
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4 Responses to Scout’s Honor?

  1. Megan Alton June 13, 2013 at 6:23 pm #

    OMG that guy’s thighs are rediculous! Strangely disproportionate to his little waist. I just saw that one of my ultra conservative (read: creationist) “friends” on FB is denouncing Thin Mints forever because GSA has aligned themselves with Planned Parenthood, “a pro-abortion entity.” Yeah, their quote not mine. Sheesh.

  2. Michele June 13, 2013 at 7:44 pm #

    Now that I have laughed to the point of birthing this kid (okay… not really… five and a half more weeks to go!), I have to tell you this may be my favorite comment of the week (or maybe ever)
    “They’re like your endearing-but-bigoted grandpa who knows he’s out of step with contemporary mores, but can’t overcome the prejudices of his generation. (Also like your grandpa, the Boy Scouts have an affinity for polyester, high waist bands, and a sharp crease in their shorts.)”

    Followed by…
    “If they were any campier they’d be the Village People.”

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  4. aimee July 17, 2016 at 4:05 pm #

    Agree, agree. I won’t support an organization with such a long history of homophobia. To add to this, I gotta bitch about girl scouts. I wish that girl scouts got to do half the cool things that boy scouts get to do. No daughter of mine will sell fucking cookies when boys get to go out and build fires and shit. I suppose that’s why I was a Camp Fire Girl instead. But it still wasn’t as cool as what the boys were doing.

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