Gays in the Boy Scouts
Gays are a fact of life, even long before of the Gay rights movement that is making the fabric of America diverse. Some like it, some hate it. Each and every person has a right to speak their mind about how they feel about having gay boys in the Boy Scouts, about gay football players in the NFL. You might not like what they say, but it is freedom of speech, their opinion.
A gay boy or gay man is usually easy to spot. As a boy grows up, their intuition is sharpened from personal experiences and outside influences. Does a boy really know he's "officially gay"? Gay boys in the Boy Scouts is old news, they were always there, just invisible for the most part. Now that they can be open about being gay, that is the real issue, whether it is scouting or NFL. Scouting is supported by over 60% of faith based groups and churches, mostly anti-gay to some members. These church groups help fund it and mostly against having openly gay boys in the Boy Scouts.
Even with a teaching of tolerance within the scouts, when boys are alone, away from authority, odds are that a gay scout will be subject to a lot of derogatory actions- whether words or action. That will never be stopped. Not everyone has to accept gays. More problematic is when scouts go camping and a gay scout has to sleep in the same tent or cabin with straight scouts. Depending on the personalities involved, this could be explosive. It raises more problems that divert the troop leader's attention so things stay "politically correct".
I had a gay troop leader a long time ago when I was a scout. We all knew it -he was simply more feminine in many ways and he was also in the Navy. Behind his back, we called him a queer or fag, but he always remained neutral about his orientation. We all liked him as a troop leader, but there were times, when we were uncomfortable when undressing in front of him during a camping trip. Some asked him to leave, others turned their backs to him. Sometimes, he seemed to gaze at us a little too long, which was creepy. Other times. he just seemed to be "too" nice, "too" friendly with some boys.
Some were uneasy about sharing a two man tent with gays and understandably so. Thus, if gays are allowed into the Boy Scouts, all of these same problems will arise over and over again. Being tolerant does not mean you are accepting, but it is a good skill to learn today.
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