Scouts Honor? — Dr. Dobson's July 2013 Newsletter
I am sure most of you are aware of the new policy within Boy Scouts of America that allows boys who are open and avowed homosexuals to be admitted as members. This was a resolution passed by 61 percent of 1,400 voting delegates on May 23rd.
Here are some reactions from pro-family leaders that mirror my own views. First, let me share an editorial written by Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council:
"After two decades of bitter back and forth, one of the last strongholds for morality in America finally buckled. Late this afternoon, despite a relentless push by Scouts in every state, the National Council exchanged a century-old legacy for a false compromise that puts an American tradition on the pathway to extinction. After 103 years of principled leadership, the organization proved that it was incapable of the same kind of courage it's been instilling in American boys since the beginning of the 1900s. By a lopsided vote, delegates ushered into the Boy Scouts a new era of moral compromise, allowing homosexual boys and turning against a majority of members in the process. It took strong-armed tactics, political sharks, and corporate harassment, but the national leadership of BSA finally succeeded in forcing through a…policy that robs the Scouts of its innocence."1
Another respected friend and colleague, attorney John Stemberger, founder of OnMyHonor.Net, wrote this:
"It is with great sadness and deep disappointment that we recognize on this day that the most influential youth program in America has turned a tragic corner. The vote today to allow open and avowed homosexuality in Scouting will 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. 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 that 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."
Stemberger continued, "We grieve today, not because we are faced with leaving Scouting, but because the Boy Scouts of America left us. Its leadership has turned its back on 103 years of abiding by a mission to prepare young people to make ethical and moral choices. Instead, it is embarking on a pathway of social experimentation 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."2
An official statement from Assemblies of God reads:
"[Our] leadership regrets that the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) has voted to change its policy regarding inclusion of homosexual youth members. We believe—as do a majority of Boy Scout volunteer leaders and parents—that this is not the best policy for BSA, nor for the young men it serves.
We believe that the BSA policy change will lead to a mass exodus from the Boy Scout program, as Assemblies of God and many other churches can no longer support groups that are part of an organization allowing members who are openly homosexual. However, as a positive alternative, we offer a program—the Royal Rangers—that operates with values consistent to that of the BSA prior to today's change."3
In an interview with The Christian Post, Elizabeth Pritchard, a committee chair for Pack 928 in Southlake, Texas, said this:
"I can't imagine going to camp with my son, being with him every step of the way saying: 'I'm sorry, he can't sleep in the tents with other boys. I'm sorry, he can't take a shower unless I'm outside the shower and he's the only person in there. I'm sorry, he can't go biking with other boys unless his father or I are there.' How is that scouting?" she asked.4
This final comment by Mrs. Pritchard contains serious implications that every Christian parent should consider. Each of us should ask ourselves a series of questions: If "open and avowed homosexuality" will henceforth be deemed acceptable behavior by Scouts, what about "open and avowed heterosexuality"? Are they not morally equivalent? For more than a century, scouts have been taught to keep themselves chaste and pure. The mission of BSA has been, "To prepare young people to make ethical and moral choices over their lifetimes." Apparently, that objective has been abandoned, raising additional questions. During scouting activities and events, will both gays and straights be encouraged to practice their sexuality openly and with the approval of scout leaders? Will boys advocate licentious behavior with impunity? Is biblical morality a discarded principle now disappearing in antiquity? If the answer to any of these questions is "yes," I would not want my grandson learning his values from today's BSA. Would you?
I agree emphatically with this statement by the Assemblies of God church. "In the fractured family and culture of today, we realize that many young people are struggling with sexual identity and behavior. Our Assemblies of God Churches seek to help these young people to experience sexual purity in their lives, and remain virgins until married to a person of the opposite sex. Love, counseling and prayer is given to those who fail in this regard so that young people who engage in sexual relations outside marriage can reset their moral compass toward God's will through repentance, forgiveness, and restoration." 5
The Boy Scouts of America will no longer assist parents and the church in accomplishing that biblical perspective.
There is another factor that should have been considered by delegates who opened the door to homosexuality. If they thought their decision would end the controversy, they will be disappointed. The way the LGBT operates is to get its foot in the door and then move directly to other aspects of their agenda. Remember what happened with the gay-rights movement. It began by demanding tolerance from the wider culture. That being achieved, it sought acceptance and approval. Then same-sex marriage became the mantra, followed by homosexual adoption, and propaganda taught in the schools from kindergarten to grade 12. From there, it went to support for bi-sexuality and cross-dressing. In Colorado, transgendered men can now legally use women's (and girls') public toilets, even if occupied by the opposite sex. The latest "cause" now gaining momentum is for legalized polygamy and lowered age of consent for children. The final objective will be the death of marriage, itself, and even prohibitions on what is taught from the pulpit.
So it will be with scouting. Does anyone doubt that homosexual scout leaders will be the next cause célèbre for BSA? Or that some liberal judge will approve the latest demand? Or that the movement will rally behind a litany of leftist laws? Admitting homosexual scouts will be only the beginning.
For those who think I am exaggerating, let's consider what has happened in the past 20 years to Girls Scouts of the USA (GSUSA). This is what I wrote three years ago in Bringing Up Girls:
I can no longer recommend that parents send their girls to GSUSA. That organization has changed radically since 1993, when it began making references to God "optional" and marking the word with an asterisk. Then came mandates against Christmas caroling, praying at meetings, and singing hymns. Now we are seeing a surge toward the left that is deeply disturbing to many Christian parents.
For example, as part of GSUSA's AMAZE program for middle school Scouts, the girls read a quote from Buddha and are encouraged to explore mazes and stone or dirt labyrinths—symbols rooted in pagan mythology and the New Age movement. They are used as meditation tools, along with "transformation circles." Eastern mysticism through Zen gardens and Buddhist writings are part of the curriculum. Moral relativism is evident throughout, which teaches that ethical issues are up to the individual. GSUSA's definition of right and wrong includes this statement: "Whatever is consistent with your character."6
The curriculum has a strong anti-boy tone (boys are mentioned only in negative situations). There is minimal emphasis on mother, father, or family. Girls are not taught pride of country. The United States is depicted as antiquated and incompatible with globalism. One program involves girls in the United Nations Population Fund. Translated, that amounts to a massive effort to limit human procreation by means of abortion.
Many of the female role models lauded by GSUSA are radical feminists, lesbians, existentialists, or communists, including the former chairwoman of the American Communist Party. There is much more to disturb parents, including a consistent infusion of lesbian and homosexual propaganda. In short, the organization has been "captured" by advocates of an extreme leftist ideology that is being force-fed to millions of vulnerable girls. Its board of directors and many troop leaders are intent on converting every girl from the youngest Daisy to a mature Ambassador into an "agent of change," programmed to implement an extreme international agenda. The media has kept this transformation a secret for more than a decade.
There is a far better program available for girls, in my opinion. It is a nonprofit organization called American Heritage Girls, founded in 1995 in West Chester, Ohio, by a group of parents wanting a more wholesome alternative for their daughters. These parents were disillusioned with the increasing secular focus of existing organizations for girls. They wanted a Judeo-Christian focused entity and assumed that they were not alone.7
American Heritage Girls is dedicated to the mission of building women of integrity through service to God, family, community, and country. It offers badge programs, service projects, leadership opportunities, and outdoor experiences to its members. This program of character building has successfully served thousands of girls since its inception and will continue to do so long into the twenty-first century.
AHG troops are composed of groups of girls ages five to eighteen who meet weekly or biweekly to learn new skills, give service, grow in their faith, practice leadership, experience teamwork, build friendships, and strengthen character. … According to the president of AHG, "This Christ-centered organization is led by dedicated adult volunteers who facilitate the program while recognizing girls' valuable input."
There are more than ten thousand American Heritage Girls who meet across the United States. Each troop reflects the "personality" of its Charter Partner as it utilizes the AHG program to achieve its ministry goals for youth.
This is the oath taken by American Heritage Girls:
I promise to love God,
Cherish my family,
Honor my country,
And serve in my community.
I recommend American Heritage Girls enthusiastically to parents who want their daughters involved in a traditional Christian-based program that will reinforce what they are trying to teach at home. That certainly will not occur at Girl Scouts USA!
Concerning the Boy Scouts of America, there are numerous alternative programs springing up for parents who can no longer support BSA. That is a sad culmination to one of the finest organizations in the world.
On the back of this letter is a list of alternatives for both boys and girls—those that will not assault the belief systems of Christian parents.
In closing, let me say that Family Talk needs your financial assistance in this lean summer. We are doing our best to defend righteousness in the culture, and to strengthen the institutions of marriage and parenthood. We can't be effective without the support of those who are also concerned about what is happening to our Christian beliefs and our beloved families. Please help us if you can.
James C. Dobson, Ph.D.
Founder and President
6. Chelsea Schilling, "Girl Scouts Exposed," WorldNetDaily (May 17, 2009); see http://www.wnd .com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=97977
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Alternative Organizations for Boys and Girls
American Heritage Girls – www.ahgonline.org; 513.771.2025
AWANA – http://awana.org; 630.213.2000
Baptist Scouters – www.baptistscouters.org
Royal Ambassadors (Baptists on Mission) – http://baptistsonmission.org/Church-Programs/Royal-Ambassadors; 336.629.2374 ext. 107 or www.wmu.com/index.php?q=welcome-royal-ambassadors; 205.991.8100
Calvinist Cadets – www.calvinistcadets.org; 616.241.5616, ext. 4
Christian Service Brigade Ministries – http://csbministries.org; 800.815.5573
Faith Based Boys – www.faithbasedboys.org
Federation of North American Explorers – http://fneexplorers.com; 416.435.6593
Frontier Girls Clubs – http://frontiergirlsclubs.com; 530.524.8799
Gems Girls Clubs – http://gemsgc.org; 616.241.5616, ext. 3032
Pathfinders Club – www.pathfindersonline.org
Royal Rangers – http://royalrangers.com; 417.862.2781; ext. 4181