School district mailed Boy Scout recruiting letter & it offends me - Page 2 - Mothering Forums
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#31 of 56 Old 03-23-2012, 12:15 PM
 
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Are the Girl Scouts affiliated with any of this?
No, the Girl Scouts is a completely different organization, they are not affiliated with the Boy Scouts in anyway.


The girl scouts have none of these issues. 

 

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#32 of 56 Old 03-23-2012, 04:14 PM
 
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Hi, I am a 12-year dedicated Scout Leader in Massachusetts and this too would offend me. I am sorry this was handled that way but please give the Scouting program a 'fighting' chance?  Cub Scouting offers your son a LOT of life skills and interpersonal skills that he won't get from school clubs or sports. Boy Scouting will give him skills he will use a lifetime; every Boy Scout merit badge is a potential 'career' he might choose some day--and there are 125 of them! I think your argument is justified.



I would love to give Boy Scouts a "fighting" chance, however, as an atheist family we are not welcome. So I guess that we have learned the life and interpersonal skills that Boy Scouts has to offer us. "YOU ARE NOT WELCOME" is very clear. 

 

I am teaching my children to stand with people who are discriminated against - such as gays. It's too bad that Boy Scouts discriminate - but there it is. My sons have a moral obligation to speak out and not just go along. 

 

My nephew is in Boy Scouts, but that is fine for them as they are a homophobic family anyway. 


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#33 of 56 Old 03-23-2012, 04:26 PM
 
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Spiral scouts looks beautiful and more in line with our life philosophy. Thank you for sharing that idea. I was thinking of 4 H but it didn't feel quite right to me. This may be a better choice for us.

 

http://www.spiralscouts.org.


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#34 of 56 Old 03-26-2012, 11:04 PM
 
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Are the Girl Scouts affiliated with any of this?
No, the Girl Scouts is a completely different organization, they are not affiliated with the Boy Scouts in anyway.

 

Girl Scouts at the level of the service unit or council will sometimes offer joint activities with the boy scouts...not sure how this fits in with the goals of girl scouts at the national level.

 

In addition many parents who have a girl in scouts might also have a boy in scouts as well.  A mom who is a leader for girl scouts might also be involved in boy scouts as well.

 

Not saying this is true in all cases, but at the troop level there can be quite a bit of mixed activities.
 

 

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#35 of 56 Old 09-10-2012, 06:03 PM
 
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I am proud to be a Boy Scout Leader and have seen the Scouting Program over the course of many years help SO many boys become young men of GREAT character, strong morals, and are very compassionate and willing to help ANYONE in need. Why do you find this bad? Perhaps because you've never been in the program to see the REAL emphasis and purpose of what we do. Not ONE of our boys OR our Leaders would EVER treat anyone badly because of someone's race, religion, background, OR sexual preference. We teach compassion and caring for all. To me, it's the BEST program out there. And I'm proud to be a part of it. 

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#36 of 56 Old 09-10-2012, 06:38 PM
 
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This is an old thread. Not sure why we need to dig it back up. I think the issues were well covered the first couple of times around.


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#37 of 56 Old 09-11-2012, 07:58 AM
 
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I am proud to be a Boy Scout Leader and have seen the Scouting Program over the course of many years help SO many boys become young men of GREAT character, strong morals, and are very compassionate and willing to help ANYONE in need. Why do you find this bad? Perhaps because you've never been in the program to see the REAL emphasis and purpose of what we do. Not ONE of our boys OR our Leaders would EVER treat anyone badly because of someone's race, religion, background, OR sexual preference. We teach compassion and caring for all. To me, it's the BEST program out there. And I'm proud to be a part of it. 

 

So imagine for a minute that you couldn't be part of it.

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#38 of 56 Old 09-11-2012, 09:35 AM
 
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I am proud to be a Boy Scout Leader and have seen the Scouting Program over the course of many years help SO many boys become young men of GREAT character, strong morals, and are very compassionate and willing to help ANYONE in need. Why do you find this bad? Perhaps because you've never been in the program to see the REAL emphasis and purpose of what we do. Not ONE of our boys OR our Leaders would EVER treat anyone badly because of someone's race, religion, background, OR sexual preference. We teach compassion and caring for all. To me, it's the BEST program out there. And I'm proud to be a part of it. 

 

to you it might be a great program, but it clearly does not teach compassion for all.
from their own documents:

The BSA policy is: “While the BSA does not proactively inquire about the sexual orientation of employees, volunteers, or members, we do not grant membership to individuals who are open or avowed homosexuals or who engage in behavior that would become a distraction to the mission of the BSA.”

this shows a compleate lack of compassion for the difernces between our fellow humans.
you leaders do in fact treat this people very differnt, the close the doors on them, and in that, they teach the boys who have joined that it is ok to shut out folks that are different from you. This is discriminatory segregation at it's core.
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This is an old thread. Not sure why we need to dig it back up. I think the issues were well covered the first couple of times around.

i think things like this come back up because new moms and dad have kids that become this age and for them it is not covered yet.

in this particular case it came back up because someone associated to the scouts clearly found it in a google search and registered to voice their opinion.

it is worthwhile to dig back up because the issue is still happening.

it is worthwhile for new moms to know that their case is not an isolated case.

it is worthwhile to dig back up to show that there are alternatives, i for one did not know of some of these other groups.

it is also a way good to help stand behind someone who is looking for the strength to change the status quo


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#39 of 56 Old 09-11-2012, 12:34 PM
 
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I am proud to be a Boy Scout Leader and have seen the Scouting Program over the course of many years help SO many boys become young men of GREAT character, strong morals, and are very compassionate and willing to help ANYONE in need. Why do you find this bad? Perhaps because you've never been in the program to see the REAL emphasis and purpose of what we do. Not ONE of our boys OR our Leaders would EVER treat anyone badly because of someone's race, religion, background, OR sexual preference. We teach compassion and caring for all. To me, it's the BEST program out there. And I'm proud to be a part of it. 

BSA can be a great program for "so many boys" and I could care less. It is all of the kids and families BSA's bigotry leaves behind that make me unwilling to have anything to do with the organization. It also makes me absolutely livid at the thought that public insitutions would support private bigotry.

 

My nephew because an Eagle scout this year and my other nephew will likely become an Eagle scout next year. And no, the positives do not outweigh the negatives.

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#40 of 56 Old 09-11-2012, 06:09 PM
 
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I am proud to be a Boy Scout Leader and have seen the Scouting Program over the course of many years help SO many boys become young men of GREAT character, strong morals, and are very compassionate and willing to help ANYONE in need. Why do you find this bad? Perhaps because you've never been in the program to see the REAL emphasis and purpose of what we do. Not ONE of our boys OR our Leaders would EVER treat anyone badly because of someone's race, religion, background, OR sexual preference. We teach compassion and caring for all. To me, it's the BEST program out there. And I'm proud to be a part of it. 

 

I hope so, campzout. That was not our experience. My son, who went through Tigers and Webelos with the young men he moved to BSA with, was shunned by the boys AND the fathers when he got a bit "alternative". He had a Goth stage in his freshman year. And they all decided that he was gay. (He's not. Not that it matters.) From that point on? No one wanted to bunk with him on camping trips. He was no longer invited to group trips or sleepovers. And so on and so forth. He hung on for a year. And then had enough, and quit to focus on other interests. But his giving up was solely due to how he was treated by the boys and their fathers. And yes, I spoke with the leaders.

 

I still think Boy Scouts has a lot to offer. For some boys. But not all.

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#41 of 56 Old 09-11-2012, 06:17 PM
 
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I hope so, campzout. That was not our experience. My son, who went through Tigers and Webelos with the young men he moved to BSA with, was shunned by the boys AND the fathers when he got a bit "alternative". He had a Goth stage in his freshman year. And they all decided that he was gay. (He's not. Not that it matters.) From that point on? No one wanted to bunk with him on camping trips. He was no longer invited to group trips or sleepovers. And so on and so forth. He hung on for a year. And then had enough, and quit to focus on other interests. But his giving up was solely due to how he was treated by the boys and their fathers. And yes, I spoke with the leaders.

 

I still think Boy Scouts has a lot to offer. For some boys. But not all.


We also had a very negative experience after a certain point. The lack of tolerance for diversity of any kind seems to be all through the organization.


 
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#42 of 56 Old 09-12-2012, 07:16 AM
 
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I know a lot of Boy Scouts who are fine, upstanding citizens. One of them is the one Scout who stood by my son. I also know some who do not live up to the BOy Scout oath. One is an Eagle Scout, who I *know* cheated regularly in HS. It's like any other group - some are amazing, and some stink.

 

I still feel BSA can offer a lot to some boys.
 

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#43 of 56 Old 09-12-2012, 08:43 AM
 
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I still feel BSA can offer a lot to some boys.

 

 

And that's great -- for those boys and their families.  But its not open to all boys or all families and thus has NO business being promoted by schools or given special priority or privileges by public institutions like schools or government.  Its great that the option is available for those who it suits but it shouldn't be promoted by the school.

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#44 of 56 Old 09-16-2012, 12:56 PM
 
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My daughter came home on Friday and mentioned that the girls in her grade had a "dance party" at school that day.  When I asked where the boys were, she said they were in a class to learn about Boy Scouts and if they wanted to join BS.

 

I was incensed that the school would take kids out of class to let BSA, with admitted discrimination practices, recruit kids WITHOUT their parents there!!

 

I have an email request for a meeting with the principal to hear her reasoning about this and to register my disappointment in the school administration for allowing this.

 

I don't have a son, but am very offended by the BSA's bigotry and think that if they are going to recruit new members they should only be allowed to do that through the parents - NOT directly to the kids without the parents being present. Not ok in my book.  At all.

 

I'm just really shocked by the whole thing.

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#45 of 56 Old 09-23-2012, 01:29 PM
 
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Hey, I just wanted to put this out there. For those of you who like the idea of scouting but either have religious beliefs that would exclude you from BSA or just don't care to support an institution that is openly discriminatory there is another option. Take a look at www.spiralscouts.org. Totally non-discriminatory for any reason. THIS is the scouts that my kids will be joining someday.

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"Campfire Boys and Girls" is another option. They do not discriminate against anyone. People think of Campfire as a girl's organization but they went co-ed decades ago. You can have all boy troops, all girl troops and co-ed troops. Great organization, great skill building.

I too would not have my son in Boy Scouts. Certainly, there are some wonderful people involved. We know several. However, all a boy has to come across is a single jerk who decides to kick them out and strip them from their merits. All the wonderful people in the organization couldn't protect them from the charter the organizations leaders supports.

Personally, I found it offensive when Boy Scout stuff came out in school once but I decided it wasn't a hill to die on. It was the ONLY year that the local district allowed them though.

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Spiral scouts looks beautiful and more in line with our life philosophy. Thank you for sharing that idea. I was thinking of 4 H but it didn't feel quite right to me. This may be a better choice for us.

http://www.spiralscouts.org.

Another fantastic alternative scouting organization: http://bpsa-us.org/

Inclusive and coed, from what I can tell.

Scouting is a great activity for kids - but no son of mine will ever join BSA. The discriminatory policies are unacceptable.

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#46 of 56 Old 09-29-2012, 02:54 PM
 
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So you don't want the school sending home flyers for any organizations or clubs you disagree with? Would you have a problem with the bible club? the jewish student association? the muslim student association. Get over yourself. Just had one of you people attack me in front of my son while he was selling popcorn for the scouts. Yea yell at little kids parents. Cause a scene in front of a grocery store. You are all the intolerant ones. Wanting to have your way and get people into trouble for having a club. Oh no, kids want to love their country, help people and grow up to be good. Oh the horrors....

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#47 of 56 Old 09-29-2012, 02:56 PM
 
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maybe you might be more concerned that the school is taking kids out of class for things other than education...I mean noone should take class time for boy scouts but the girls having a dance party? your school has bigger problems than the boy scouts...
 

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#48 of 56 Old 09-29-2012, 02:57 PM
 
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and neither should footbaths for muslims or changing football practice to 1am so people can celebrate ramadan....

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#49 of 56 Old 09-29-2012, 05:18 PM
 
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So you don't want the school sending home flyers for any organizations or clubs you disagree with? Would you have a problem with the bible club? the jewish student association? the muslim student association. Get over yourself. Just had one of you people attack me in front of my son while he was selling popcorn for the scouts. Yea yell at little kids parents. Cause a scene in front of a grocery store. You are all the intolerant ones. Wanting to have your way and get people into trouble for having a club. Oh no, kids want to love their country, help people and grow up to be good. Oh the horrors....

 

There really is a big difference between an in-school, student-run organization (i.e. Bible Club, Jewish Student Union, etc.) and an outside organization soliciting membership (Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, a local karate school., etc.). The former belong in the schools. The latter? Not so much. I'm sure you can understand that.

 

Yes, the person who yelled at you was out of line. But... Perhaps s/he had a similar experience with Scouts as my son/I did and took it out on the first Scout representative s/he saw. Inappropriate? Probably. But I can understand it. There was a point when I was so hurt by how my son was treated (and the repercussions wrt our family friendships), taht I may have done the same. When your child is hurt - most parents go into tiger mode.

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#50 of 56 Old 09-29-2012, 05:45 PM
 
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I have no problem with flyers sent home for the Boy Scouts in the Friday Folder that every child brings home from our local elementaries. We also get flyers for other kids organizations like the Y, town rec dept, Karate schools, etc. I just throw 'em all the in the recycling. I do have a problem with what the OP described as a letter recruiting boys on district letterhead. That's over the line to me. Certainly the other poster's description boys being pulled out of class to be recruited sounds over the line, too.

 

I also have no problem with little boys selling Boy Scout popcorn (except I think it's gross popcorn) as long as it's not a school sponsored event.

 

My dad was a Scoutmaster for many years before there was an official policy banning gay scouts and gay and lesbian leaders and he helped a whole lot of boys over the years. Probably among the large number of scouts he worked with there were a few who were gay. He was very accepting of kids who were different, helping developmentally disabled kids, black kids, white kids — he even took a few stray boys into our home (not my fave thing when I was a teen) and I'm sure he would have been accepting of an out gay scout. It's such a shame that the national organization is so close-minded and intolerant on this issue because I think there are great leaders and great troops who can do a lot for kids, but this pointedly intolerant position needs to change. I'm so glad I never had to disappoint my dad by not allowing a child of mine to join the scouts. It was a non-issue for our family because we have two girls, and he has since passed on. 

 

 

I'm heartened by people like Zach Wahls (eagle scout with two moms) who are agitating for change w/in the organization: http://www.advocate.com/business/2012/09/20/zach-wahls-asks-intel-stop-funding-discriminatory-boy-scouts .


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#51 of 56 Old 09-29-2012, 06:40 PM
 
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and neither should footbaths for muslims or changing football practice to 1am so people can celebrate ramadan....

 

You're actually representing the bigotry in Boy Scouts, which is hilarious because I doubt that you are thoughtful enough to realize that.


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#52 of 56 Old 10-03-2012, 06:39 AM
 
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Need to clarify here:  While the overall BSA organization takes a stance on not including gays, not every district or council agrees with it, and they have the option to not support it.  FEw in my state support it, and all you have to do is go their websites to see that. Don't assume that all troops and packs are not inclusive.  Ours has been since the BSA first specified the guidelines on gay leaders and members.

 

Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts can be a great experience but just like anything, it is not for everyone.  As someone who went through the ranks of youth sports I prefer scouts to that culture.  Much more accepting of different values and opinions in my experience.  Also, a lot less yelling and fundraising.

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#53 of 56 Old 10-03-2012, 06:58 AM
 
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"You're actually representing the bigotry in Boy Scouts, which is hilarious because I doubt that you are thoughtful enough to realize that."

 

 

No hilarity there.  There is nothing funny about assuming that that one person's opinion represents an entire organization.  In fact one could even say that is bigotry.

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#54 of 56 Old 10-03-2012, 07:10 AM
 
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Need to clarify here:  While the overall BSA organization takes a stance on not including gays, not every district or council agrees with it, and they have the option to not support it.  FEw in my state support it, and all you have to do is go their websites to see that. Don't assume that all troops and packs are not inclusive.  Ours has been since the BSA first specified the guidelines on gay leaders and members.

 

Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts can be a great experience but just like anything, it is not for everyone.  As someone who went through the ranks of youth sports I prefer scouts to that culture.  Much more accepting of different values and opinions in my experience.  Also, a lot less yelling and fundraising.

 

Yes, there can be local troops that will be inclusive but issues arise when a child moves, needs to change troops or wants to make Eagle. At the Eagle level, they have to interview with people outside their childhood troop and deal with the "organization." They are asked about religion and sexual orientation. To earn that level they are in the position of lying or getting stripped of their merits. Some are willing to take the risk or count on their boy not being in the organization that long. Not a risk I'd take considering I have a daughter working on her Girl Scout Gold award now.

 

Personally, boy scouts can do whatever they want as a private organization. I'm not interested in dismantling their program due to the ignorance of current leadership. The next generation will get in there and I suspect they'll make changes. My issue is that locally, their council and campgrounds are on lands subsidized by the local government. Unlike the other youth organizations that are given this gift, boy scouts discriminate against a good chunk of the local population whose taxes are supporting them. The local government has asked that they move to privately funded locations (which is totally reasonable) but boy scouts is instead tying up the courts in litigation for years to stay. This is happening in many counties across the country. 


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#55 of 56 Old 10-03-2012, 07:17 AM
 
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Need to clarify here:  While the overall BSA organization takes a stance on not including gays, not every district or council agrees with it, and they have the option to not support it.  FEw in my state support it, and all you have to do is go their websites to see that. Don't assume that all troops and packs are not inclusive.  Ours has been since the BSA first specified the guidelines on gay leaders and members.

 

Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts can be a great experience but just like anything, it is not for everyone.  As someone who went through the ranks of youth sports I prefer scouts to that culture.  Much more accepting of different values and opinions in my experience.  Also, a lot less yelling and fundraising.

Sadly it doesn't really matter if individual troops support/enforce the bigotry or not. Belonging to a troop/ any money given still supports the overarching organization which is hate-filled. You can't support an organization like Boy Scouts on the local level without impacting (small as that impact may be) the national level. 

 

There are plenty of alternatives to BSA that are similar activities so one does not have to only rely on youth sports. 


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#56 of 56 Old 10-03-2012, 10:55 AM
 
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Originally Posted by beanma View Post

I have no problem with flyers sent home for the Boy Scouts in the Friday Folder that every child brings home from our local elementaries. We also get flyers for other kids organizations like the Y, town rec dept, Karate schools, etc. I just throw 'em all the in the recycling. I do have a problem with what the OP described as a letter recruiting boys on district letterhead. That's over the line to me. Certainly the other poster's description boys being pulled out of class to be recruited sounds over the line, too.

 

Exactly -- I welcome information on all sorts of organizations sent home through the school folder -- as long as its clear that it is a private organization and the school is merely acting as a convenient communication go-between.  However, NO private organization should be endorsed (or appear to be endorsed) by the school.  And especially a private organization that is committed to a discriminatory membership practices.  So no private organization should communicated on official school/district letterhead, no class time should be allotted to a meeting or recruitment, no listing in school newsletter etc.  And private organizations meeting on school grounds should all have the same requirements for paying for using the property etc. 

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