Friday, May 3, 2013

Eagle Scout Perspective on the BSA Policy Change

I figure my opinion might be worth something.

I was in the Boy Scouts of America from 2001 to 2008, becoming a "heartbreak Eagle" by turning in the completed binder for my Eagle Project just two days prior to my 18th birthday. My Eagle Board of Review was a few months later and then voila! I passed and about a year later, I had a joint Eagle Ceremony with four other guys in my age range from the same troop. The senator for our district came by and everything. Now I've been out for 5 years, but as they say, you never "were" an Eagle Scout. You are an Eagle Scout, for life.

At your Board of Review, you're asked a number of questions by the adult interviewers for the purpose of determining that you didn't fake your way through the system. They typically begin by having you recite the Scout Oath:
On my honor
I will do my best
To do my duty 
To God and my country,
To obey the Scout Law,
To keep myself physically strong

mentally awake
and morally straight. 
The second most commonly recited memorized dogma of Scouting is the Law:
A Scout is:

and Reverent.
"Morally straight" does not merely refer to sexual behavior, but it includes it. This moral straightness refers to one's duty to God. A Scout is Reverent--that means that he does not merely acknowledge the existence of a higher power, but that he honors and worships God through his thoughts, words, deeds and lifestyle. I am ashamed to say that I've known several guys, some who made Eagle, who were clearly not a believer in any orthodox religion, much less Christianity, and furthermore who engaged in premarital sex and illicit drug use. Many boys join Scouts because they want the opportunity to go camping or get to explore their pyrotechnic leanings, whereas others are forced to by their parents, and don't have any internal motivation to use the experience for character development.

This is no different for homosexuals. While atheists and anybody practicing premarital sex should also be sternly rebuked and risk banishment, the fact that these sins are winked at by a tolerant leadership does not mean that homosexuality should also get a free pass. What the three have in common is that people who break the rules still want to get the benefits of being part of something without having enough integrity to abide by the established rules in order to do so. They have an entitlement mentality, where, like the doping athlete, they think they deserve to be given an award despite their unsportsmanlike behavior. 

A homosexual isn't reverent to God. If a Scout must be, then he cannot be a Scout. By definition. Changing the rules to allow rulebreakers into the organization doesn't make the rulebreakers legitimate, it makes the organization increasingly illegitimate.

It's been pointed out before, but here's the fundamental logical reason, which even nonChristians can understand, why the BSA should not lift the ban on gays, whether boys or adults, lest it destroy itself: 
If the Boy Scouts of America lifts the ban on homosexuals, then it will be saying that its rules were not based on timeless values, but on arbitrary prejudice. Arbitrary prejudice can be arbitrarily abandoned. Timeless values cannot. If the BSA is built on values, then it cannot compromise those values. If the BSA compromises on homosexuality, it will be admitting that it does not stand on values but will give in to pressure. An interesting consequence is that the BSA will open itself up to lawsuits alleging wrongful discrimination, since lifting the ban would necessarily mean that the organization discriminated against homosexuals in the past without any reason to do so.
God doesn't change. His righteous judgments endure forever (Psalm 119:160). Truth is from God, therefore truth never changes, because God never changes. Changing rules is truthless and therefore godless. If the BSA compromises its position then it might as well throw out the part of the Oath and Law that reference God and moral straightness, or honor, loyalty and bravery for that matter. In other words, the whole thing. If the BSA does this thing, it will destroy itself. Some organization may remain, but it won't be the Boy Scouts of America, any longer.

Another Scout saying which Eagle candidates may be told to recite at their Board of Review is the Motto: "Be prepared." I can hardly imagine that the national leadership was prepared to deal with the challenge posed by mob intimidation by businesses and media on behalf of a minority of society that has no part in their mission and seeks to undermine it. Being prepared means planning ahead so that you do the right thing when you come under fire, rather than scatter and rout like undisciplined cowards.

Regroup. Reorganize. Fall-in. The Boy Scouts of America needs to reaffirm its charter, which has stood for 103 years. If it does not stand the test of time and bear the burden of criticism from an increasingly godless nation, it will cease to remain a force for good in the culture.

I fear that this is the way the chips will fall. When I am old enough to put my own children through a similar program, there may no longer be an existing structure that I can tolerate committing them to. I may have to make an attempt to start my own.

Persecution isn't coming, Christian. It's here.

~ Rak Chazak

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