Following the vote today by the Boy Scouts of America’s voting delegates to pass the resolution allowing “open and avowed homosexuality” in the Boy Scouts, John Stemberger, founder of OnMyHonor.Net, a coalition of members of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) including parents, Scoutmasters, Eagle Scouts and other Scouting leaders who affirm Scouting’s timeless values, made the following statement:
It is with great sadness and deep disappointment that we recognize that on this day that the most influential youth program in America has turned a tragic corner in its history which will eventually completely transform it into an unprincipled and risky proposition for parents. It is truly a sad day for scouting.
The Boy Scouts of America has a logo that bears the phrase ‘Timeless Values.’ Today, the BSA can no longer use this phrase in good faith because it has demonstrated by its actions that the organization’s values are not timeless, and instead they are governed by changing tides of polls, politics and public opinion.
The saddest part of today’s decision is what the organization is teaching our children and young people in the program.
The BSA is teaching our kids that when your values become unpopular, just change them.
The BSA is teaching our kids when your convictions are challenged, just cave to peer pressure
The BSA is teaching our kids that public opinion polls are more important than principles.
Today, the BSA is teaching our kids that you should not stand up for what is right instead you should stand up for what is popular.
The mission of the Boy Scouts of America is to “prepare young people to make ethical and moral choices over their lifetimes by instilling in them the values of the Scout Oath and Scout Law.”
Today the mission of the BSA has been radically changed by virtue of its actions and new direction.
BSA is teaching our kids through its new mission that we don’t make ethical and moral choices through the values of the Scout Oath and Scout Law but we make them like a rank Washington DC politician, by putting your finger in the air and seeing which way the wind is blowing or by looking at the latest polling results.
What kind of a message are we sending to young people about being brave when its top adult leaders don’t even have the courage to stand up to the peer pressure of their own adult peers when the bullies in Washington, D.C., Hollywood or even some of their own renegade councils start pressuring and harassing them?
As for the thousands of scouting families that have been supporting and following our movement we realize each and every family has a very difficult decision to make. We respect the right for each parent and family to decide whether they will continue their membership in the Boy Scouts of American or not.
Many, like me and my family cannot continue to support an organization who has started a downward spiral and being more concerned with the intolerant demands of activists while compromising the safety and security of the young people they serve. In July of last year the BSA said after a two year study from 2010 to 2012 the eleven member task force unanimously concluded that their existing policy on this issue was “the absolute best policy for the Boy Scouts of American.” Suddenly, less than a year later, that is abruptly reversed.
We had hoped to keep sex and politics out of scouting and we grieve for those young boys who will not have the wonderful tradition and experience that so many of us have had in scouting.
We grieve today, not because we are faced with leaving scouting, but because Boy Scouts of America has left us. Its leadership has turned its back on 103 years of abiding by its mission to prepare young people to make ethical and moral choices. Instead, it is embarking on a pathway of social experimentation that we believe will place at risk the very youth the organization is entrusted to serve, while rendering as hollow the tenets of the Scout Oath. Many of us find that unacceptable, and we have a desire to explore how we might serve families and young people at the highest standard originally intended by scouting’s founder, Robert Baden-Powell.