Recently, the Boy Scouts of America lifted its policy banning gay youth from participating. All young men are required to live a standard of sexual abstinence, but membership will not be denied to anyone on the basis of sexual
- (Photo credit: Daniel M. Reck)
The LDS church, which sponsors a huge portion of Boy Scout Troops, released this statement on the decision. In summary, the Church supports the decision and has no intention of breaking ties with BSA.
This makes perfect sense to me- it is no secret that the LDS church has always taught that homosexual behavior is sinful and will disqualify a member from being considered “worthy”, but we don’t (as a Church) necessarily believe that sexual orientation is a choice or that people should be punished for the fact that they identify as being gay.
So you can imagine my shock when I found that many members of the church feel incredibly opposed to , and even angry over,the Church’s decision to stay connected to BSA. All of the following statements were taken from comments to the Facebook announcement from the Mormon Newsroom’s page regarding the Church’s position. Here’s a taste:
A Slippery Slope:
IMO, the Church should stay away from this slippery slope and completely break from the BSA.
A slippery slope to where? To love and acceptance of human beings? There’s no sin in what the Church is doing, and from where I sit, it is actually profoundly Christlike.
We should not wear CTR rings and do the opposite. No to gay Scouting.
Nobody is choosing the wrong, here.
The World’s Perversion:
I do not accept the argument that homosexuality does no harm as long as they are “morally pure”. Christ was the example of moral purity we need to be seeking and not the perversion taught by the world.
Okay, this one I’m really going to break down. I think that one of the authors points is true and important- that evil desires are in and of themselves harmful, even without an action attached. (Would you feel comfortable being best buds with someone who thought about brutally murdering people all day long?) And yes, Christ IS the “example of moral purity we need to be seeking”. But none of us have quite found that yet, and that doesn’t mean we should be excluded from church or community activities from it. Is it wrong for a boy to be attracted to other boys? Only to the extent he consciously controls (and that is a matter I’m leaving up to God to sort through). Allow me to be clear and to be bold: It is my conviction that God has very specific laws which should govern our sexual actions, and disobedience to these laws will always carry consequences. Homosexual activity is not sanctioned by God and is sinful. But I don’t see how the desire to commit sin of a homosexual sin of any different than the desire to commit sin of any other nature. Should ti be encouraged? No. Should people be ostracized for it? No again.
The Tent Problem:
How are they going to handle groups of boys changing in tents? I don’t want a chaste boy checking out my son while he undresses in a tent anymore so than I’d want my son to be undressing in a tent with girls. I understand having compassion for and not excluding boys with same sex attraction, but that doesn’t mean I want my son to have to worry about who is checking him out at Scout camp.
Uh…is this really that big of a deal? Do boys dance around naked at scout camp? I would imagine that any time boys spend together completely naked would be momentary and that any gay young man who was looking for a view wouldn’t really get the change to ogle for too long. Also, if my son told me here was worried about someone “checking him out”, I think I would just tell him to get over it.
The Most Decent of Girls and the Most Decent of Gays:
I’m fine with there being gay scouts; my biggest concern is letting my children go camping with gays. I wouldn’t send my boys camping with the most decent of girls, and I won’t let them camp with the most decent of gays.
So…gays are allowed to be in scouts but not go on camp outs? Or we have to have separate camping trips for the straights and the gays?
Didn’t we just hear from April General Conference from L. Tom Perry, President Monson, among others that God’s laws are unchanging?? God’s laws DO NOT change on the whims of a darkening society. I love the gospel of The Son of God. I don’t think He agrees with this. It contradicts what His prophets just told us less than two months ago. How can you support anything contrary to God’s law?
Nowhere in God’s law is it written that men who are attracted to other men are not allowed to associate and/or camp with men who are attracted to women. Sorry.
I know that this an issue that a lot of people feel really strongly about. I’m not trying to point my finger at one camp and put it down as being homophobic and lacking gospel understanding, but, oh wait, that is what I’m trying to do.
BUT I want to know if there is something I am missing here. So, please, call me out. Make me understand.