Thursday, January 31, 2013

Boy Scouts Face Backlash

Gary L. Bauer
Campaign for Working Families

News that the Boy Scouts of America is reconsidering its policy to allow openly homosexual scout masters has touched off a firestorm of controversy. Judging by the messages I am receiving from former Eagle Scouts, current scout leaders and parents of children in the Boy Scouts, there are a lot of concerned supporters of Scouting who are furious by this sudden surrender to the cultural left.

After all, just six months ago, an 11-member committee unanimously reaffirmed the current policy as "absolutely the best policy for the Boy Scouts." I see hints that the Boy Scouts may be hesitating.

Unfortunately, the intolerant left isn't giving up. It has relentlessly hounded major corporate sponsors who fear negative publicity. Last year, Intel, Merck and UPS stopped funding the Boy Scouts. Verizon is under pressure from left-wing activists to do the same.

But here is a key point to consider in this debate. While the focus is on the Boys Scouts of America, the overwhelming majority (69%) of Scout troops are locally chartered by faith-based organizations. In fact, the Mormon Church is the single largest chartering organization, serving more than 420,000 boys. Catholic, Baptist and other evangelical churches serve another 400,000.

This is why the left keeps going after the Boy Scouts. Like the meaning of marriage, it is partly an assault on religious liberty. What about this so-called "compromise" to allow local units to decide their own membership policy? "A house divided against itself cannot stand." It's a ruse designed to undermine the policy and force its eventual collapse.

The militant homosexual movement will never accept it, just as it never accepted the Defense of Marriage Act, a compromise that allowed individual states to define marriage. The radical gay rights crowd, with Obama's support, is now demanding that the Supreme Court strike down DOMA and force same-sex "marriage" on every state of the union.

Most local Boy Scout units, because they are chartered by churches, would likely maintain the existing ban on openly homosexual scout masters. I strongly suspect the gay rights crowd will continue its campaign against corporations that fund the Scouts or it will demand the Scouts expel the "bigots" -- those units that uphold the Scout oath to remain "morally straight."