Boy Scouts exclude gay members: controversy in rebuttal of policy

Kyle Fowler February 13, 2013 0

Last week in the news, the truth was revealed about both the White House and Obama’s opinion towards the Boys of America’s ban on gay members. While Obama expressed his disagreement with the policy, the issue was not settled. It was not until last week that the White House issued a definite yes in disagreement.
I think that it is only fair that members of the gay and lesbian community have the same opportunities and upbringings as heterosexuals have. Their sexual orientations do not change who they are as people. It is possible for people to group gays and view them instantly as molesters. Upon researching this topic, I was curious about how members of my own generation felt about the matter. Travis Light, a sophomore at Lebanon Valley College, was open to sharing his opinion on the matter. His view on this issue was intriguing to me due to the fact that he is an Eagle Scout.
Light said, “I feel like having gay troop leaders could be a bad idea.” When asked to elaborate, he explained that he felt he would be uncomfortable leaving his kids with a gay troop leader. I was also curious as to how women would feel towards the matter.
First-year Stephanie Pierce was willing to share with me her view on the admittance of gay members into the Boy Scouts of America. Pierce said, “I would feel fine about it. I feel like it would be the same thing as having a female teacher teaching your son in school. Everyone has the right to be treated equal and sexual orientation should not be a factor in how they are treated.” Some said they would not like leaving their son out in the wilderness with a gay troop leader or in general. Regardless if they were “joking” or serious about what they said, the message was clear. In society today, stereotypes have formed that have affected the way we view the LGBT community.
I believe that allowing members of the gay community to join the Boy Scouts of America will have a great impact on the future of our society as a whole. Being a part of something special and sharing the bond that boys create with each other and their troop leader will allow for some of these stereotypes to be broken. It will allow parents to interact with gay troop leaders by forming trusting relationships with them, allowing them to look after and teach their kids skills they will need not only in the wilderness, but later in life. Also, it will give gay partners the opportunity to interact with other parents, helping them form friendships and understanding towards each other. Boy scouts will not be afraid to talk or interact with their troop leader while camping out in the wilderness or other various activities. It will allow for learning through experience rather than learning soley from stereotypes and opinions of peers. Boys will create and form friendships that will last a lifetime regardless of the sexual orientation of their troop members or troop leader.
Not only will it be a positive step for the heterosexual community, but for the LGBT community as well. Being responsible for a troop will allow them to learn to be comfortable with who they are. They will be able to interact with parents and not be afraid to be judged and based on stereotypes. It will make living and succeeding in today’s society as a member of the LGBT community easier, knowing that parents have enough trust in them to allow them to have an impact on their children’s lives.
I myself have never been a part of the Boy Scouts of America which may have an impact on how my opinion differs from someone who has been a member. Personally, I would not mind letting gay members join and be a part of Boy Scouts of America. I would feel comfortable knowing my kid is being taught important lessons for the future from a different perspective. It would allow him to grow and become comfortable interacting with members of a different sexual orientation. People deserve to be treated the same no matter what race, religion, or sexual orientation they are. My mother always told me as a child, “Treat others the way you would like to be treated.” That statement has stuck with me to this day and I plan on passing it on to my children for them to live by as well.

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