Boy Scouts of America fire first openly-gay troop leader since voting to allow homosexual youth into their ranks this year
I grew up in a scouting family and my father is an Eagle Scout. My 12-yr old son just achieved his Star rank in scouts. And I use to be a cub scout den leader. I am also a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints who is a strong supporter of the scouting programs (since 1913) with nearly a half million young men enrolled. I feel confident sending my son to Scouts every week to be taught by other men because every leader is interviewed on a regular basis if they are worthy to lead. An important question of the leaders is if they’re living the “Law of Chastity” which means that an individual is not having sexual relations outside of marriage and if they are not married they are abstaining. Being “morally straight” in the Boy Scout motto didn’t only mean to not have same-sex relations, it meant in the early 1900’s to obey this traditional law of God to live a life of abstinence outside of marriage. While the culture of the world has changed and people are having sexual relations with whomever without commitment, the BSA in the LDS church has remained as traditional as ever in keeping with the moral code that God wants for all His children. Recently, a most likely very dedicated Scout leader admitted to unchaste relations and his position was revoked by the BSA.
Geoff McGrath, a 49-year-old Eagle Scout, was asked to start a new troop by a reverend at his inclusive Methodist church in Seattle last year and says he didn’t conceal his sexual orientation from scouts, their parents or organization officials. While the BSA’s recent decision allows openly-gay youth to join their ranks, it still bars homosexual men from being leaders.
So when the BSA’s national headquarters found out about McGraths sexual-orientation earlier this week in the midst of a report by NBC News, his position as a the leader of Troop 98 was ‘revoked’. BSA Spokesman Deron Smith says it was only until reporters contacted the organization about McGrath for a story that they found out he was gay. ‘Our policy is that we do not ask people about their sexual orientation, and it’s not an issue until they deliberately inject it into Scouting in an inappropriate fashion,’ Smith said in an email to NBC.
McGrath started leading Troop 98 last fall after he was asked by Reverand Monica Corsaro of Rainier Beach United Methodist Church. Rev Corsaro wanted to start an inclusive troop for local youth, and reached out to McGrath who attends the church with his husband of 20 years. McGrath was hesitant to start the group at first because he had his own troubled history with the BSA. When he was 22-years-old, McGrath was offered the position of Assistant Scoutmaster but was rescinded once his troop leaders figured out he was gay. The troop was also sponsored by his Mormon church, and he was additionally excommunicated from the religion.
In a message on Facebook, McGrath said he hasn’t received an official notification from the BSA that he is no longer a Scoutmaster and says he will continue to lead the group until told otherwise by his church’s revered. The BSA says it has no plans to review its membership policy to allow gay leaders at this time.
I don’t think the question should be if a Boy Scout leader is gay or straight, the real question should be if their moral conduct reflects an example of chastity and self control in ones own life. Prophets of God have stated that marriage is between a man and a woman but additionally that sexual relations should be kept within marriage. This flippant use of a divine power of sex in the wrong place at the wrong time has directly led to the disintegration of the family. Children without fathers, mothers without husbands or caregivers is a disease that is a result of selfish misuse of the sexual powers intended to strengthen the family unit. This immoral conduct that has exploded over the last 70 years is directly reflected in the rise of disregard for life in abortions, murders, thieving and corruption and basic insensitivity to fellow man. Everything that is vulgar or perverted can be traced directly to sexual indiscretions that are widely accepted by society. Ironically, when America was at the height of their morality, they were also at the height of invention and success. Now we just look like a crack whore who use to be really really beautiful.
– Normally, this would be a big story, but it seems to have gone largely unnoticed in all the Vietnam
OK, that’s not saying too much, since the previous “greatest hour” was, by general consensus, The Trailer Park Boy’s Christmas