BSA leadership voted on May 23 to allow those who openly identify themselves as homosexual to be members. The organization did not, however, change its policy on Boy Scout leadership. Openly homosexual leaders will still not be allowed.
Many conservative churches sponsor BSA troops and many more are Scouts and leaders. All of these will have a decision to make concerning whether or not to remain a part of an organization that has legitimized a behavior they believe is immoral.
The BSA has come under increasing pressure from homosexual activist groups in recent years. The activists' goal was to have the Scouts accept homosexuality as natural, normal and healthy.
Financial pressure, the ploy of many activist groups, was brought to bear on BSA. Homosexual activists successfully lobbied corporations and non-profits to pull funding from the Boy Scouts. Additionally, efforts were made to keep BSA troops from using any public facilities for their meetings.
Interestingly, in its official statement explaining the policy change, BSA leadership said:
"The Boy Scouts of America will not sacrifice its mission, or the youth served by the movement, by allowing the organization to be consumed by a single, divisive, and unresolved societal issue."
It remains to be seen how the mission or the youth served by the BSA will be affected by the policy change. However, it is abundantly clear the organization has been -- and will be -- affected, even consumed, by the single, divisive and unresolved societal issue of homosexuality.
According to Baptist Press, "Some 1,400 delegates to the National Council approved the change in membership standards by a margin of 61-39 percent." The vote on the issue, according to reports, was by ballot.
Only those who voted in favor in changing the BSA policy on homosexuality know their real reason for doing so. However, given the trend in America today it is probably safe to assume that many did so based on an unproven premise.
The acceptance of homosexual behavior is now at unprecedented levels and seems to be rising. It seems many have come to accept the premise that homosexuality is more than just a behavior; it is natural, normal and healthy. To date, though, there has not been one single, definitive, scientific study that has established homosexuality as genetic or biological.
The American Psychological Association once touted there was considerable evidence to "suggest that biology, including genetic or inborn hormonal factors, play a significant role in a person's sexuality." The APA in recent years has abandoned this position.
The APA has produced a brochure, which is available on its website, titled "Answers to Your Questions for a Better Understanding of Sexual Orientation & Homosexuality." In the pamphlet the APA states the following:
"There is no consensus among scientists about the exact reasons that an individual develops a heterosexual, bisexual, gay or lesbian orientation. Although much research has examined the possible genetic, hormonal, developmental, social, and cultural influences on sexual orientation, no findings have emerged that permit scientists to conclude that sexual orientation is determined by any particular factor or factors...."
America has seen a surge in homosexual acceptance throughout the United States in recent years. Two factors have contributed to this. One, the acceptance of the aforementioned unproven premise that homosexuality is innate and two, societal pressure to conform to politically correct norms. Politically correct doctrine holds that all sexual behavior between consenting adults is appropriate and beyond judgment. If any individual or group deems to call any sexual expression immoral, they are to be castigated and shamed.
When it was learned early this year that a Christian sports celebrity was to speak at a prominent Baptist church in Texas, the Huffington Post ran a story with the following headline: "Tim Tebow, Jets Quarterback, To Speak At Virulently Anti-Gay, Anti-Semitic Church First Baptist Dallas."
First Baptist Church of Dallas represents the vast majority of Southern Baptist churches in America both in its doctrine and position on social issues. When a church like FBC Dallas is attacked for its biblical positions, all conservative Christians should be concerned.
What is interesting about the BSA decision concerning homosexuality is that it does not go nearly far enough for homosexual activists.
"GLAAD, a gay-rights group that has campaigned for change over the last year, said it would keep pressure on the Boy Scouts over the leadership issue," reported the New York Times. "'We'll continue urging corporate donors and public officials to withhold their support,' said Richard Ferraro, the group's vice president for communications."
"Meanwhile, lesbian mom Jennifer Tyrrell said that despite the incremental success, she would not be letting her son Cruz go back to Scouting," the Times reported.
"I would not feel comfortable," Cruz said. "I will keep him out until everyone is equal. With the current proposal, it sends the message to families that they are not normal. I don't want him around that message," wrote the Times.
Homosexual activists have made it clear they will not stop until America acknowledges homosexual behavior is natural, normal and healthy. Political correctness will be a key tool employed to achieve their goal.
According to the purveyors of PC, those who do not embrace all beliefs -- including sexual and religious -- as equal are to be vilified and shamed. And if a person or organization does not repent of their intolerance, he or she is to be shunned and ostracized.
The Boy Scouts have made their decision. BSA holds that homosexuality is natural, normal and healthy. Christians and conservatives now must choose if and/or how to relate to the new world of the BSA.
As for me and my house, we will adhere to the truth of Scripture and not capitulate to the whims of political correctness, regardless of what the Boy Scouts of America may choose to do.
Kelly Boggs is a weekly columnist for Baptist Press, director of the Louisiana Baptist Convention's office of public affairs, and editor of the Baptist Message, www.baptistmessage.com, newsjournal of the Louisiana Baptist Convention. Get Baptist Press headlines and breaking news on Twitter (@BaptistPress), Facebook (Facebook.com/BaptistPress ) and in your email ( baptistpress.com/SubscribeBP.asp).
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