As you may have heard, the Boy Scouts have decided not to ban homosexual kids from the joining their ranks. Some religious groups are angry about this, but I don’t think it’s logical to do anything else.
I was a Boy Scout for a few years. People think it’s a dorky group, and maybe it is in some ways, but how often do young boys get a chance to build huge fires or make things using knives and axes? Sometimes we just explored the woods and ate burgers that we grilled ourselves. For once, grownups were handing us dangerous tools and telling us to get into trouble (safely). Our leaders encouraged us to meditate on the beauty of the wilderness and find God’s truths in it.
But one thing that didn’t come up was our sexual orientation. There’s no demographic test for joining the Scouts, and no one ever asked if we preferred the company of men. Why? Because it wasn’t relevant to what we were doing. Enforcing this ban means grown ups would have to sit down with kids and ask all of them about their sexuality. Does that seem like something you would want to do? Do you think that local volunteers from you neighborhood have any business asking your adolescent children about their sexual feelings?
That sounds horrifying. Bear in mind that the Boy Scouts also ban atheists and agnostics from joining, but this rule is not enforced and scouts are never required to state their religious beliefs to their superiors. Young people are usually confused about a lot of things, including sexuality and religion, and the Boy Scouts is a place where they can learn life skills and be exposed to Christian teaching – even if they don’t have everything in their life figured out.
(More articles at www.ThinkingThroughChristianity.com)