The Boy Scouts of America are considering allowing gays into scouting. This is a very symbolic and therefore important moment in the struggle for GLBT rights. But 70% of scout troops are sponsored by faith based organizations. Some of those churches are threatening to withold funds and kick the scouts out of their buildings.
Now is the time for those people of faith who do not consider homophobia to be a Christian teaching to be heard. Now is the time for us to reach out to the scouts and help them do the right thing. For this extortion not to work, mainstream Christian Churches must step in to provide the support that fundamentalists are withdrawing. Call your local scout group now and tell them you will help provide for them if they will end their rejection of GLBT scouts.
I have difficulty understand why this web site or any organization would work to tell the BSA what they should do. Does not compute. Why can’t private organizations do what they??? What organizations such as the BSA has absolutely nothing to do with gay rights. People that want to work for gay rights should be not be focusing on ways to strong arm private organizations. This is hypocritical and counterproductive. Don’t we have a tradition and a set of values in this countries that says that private organizations should be able to do whatever their conscience dictates without fear of being harassed??? Pressure on the BSA from unaffiliated parties is pure idiocy and immoral. The last I check mainstream churches are solidly against their idea of homosexuality… this isn’t reserved for fundamentalists. I am not homophobic… I believe in equal treatment for all and believe people should not be singled out and treated differently because of their sexual orientation. I also believe that private organizations should not be attacked for doing what they wish. I believe that faith based organizations should be able to operate under whatever traditions and codes they wish without being lambasted by people that believe differently.
Thank you for responding Charles. I agree that private institutions should be able to discriminate, but I disagree that the rest of us should remain silent about it. If the scouts were a white only group wouldn’t you try to get them to do a better job of teaching young men what it means to be human? Teaching our young people that gays are inferior by excluding them should be challenged as well. But, of course, the scouts have a legal right to be unfair, but the rest of us have a duty to challenge their unfairness and the church’s prejudice. I say that as the pastor of a mainstream church. When MLK wrote his letter challenging white churches to work for justice, he wasn’t attacking those groups, he was trying to teach them.