January 31, 2013

How I Know the LGBT Movement Hates the Boy Scouts

(Photo Credit: Fox News)

(Photo Credit: Fox News)

by Barton Gingerich (@BJGingerich)

The proposed change to the Boy Scouts of America’s exclusion standards has hit national headlines. Currently, the BSA forbids openly gay leaders, volunteers, and scouts. This reflects the opinion of the vast majority of active parents and Scouting leadership. As an Eagle Scout and Brotherhood member of the Order of the Arrow, I was shocked and saddened to hear the announcement that the Boy Scouts were considering a change to this longstanding standard.

While The Atlantic insisted that the main impetus behind the change was the collection of heart-wrenching testimonies, this Christian Post article reveals the crux of the matter: large corporate donors are threatening to withhold funds to the BSA unless it alters the leadership standards. Within the past year, big donors Merck, Intel, and UPS threatened to no longer give to BSA because of its ban on gay scouts, volunteers and leaders. In case you were wondering, the rapid-fire volley of divestment threats does not simply happen without much work behind the curtain. Just this week, Scouting leadership announced it was reconsidering its stance.

The change faces great opposition within the Scouting community and on the grassroots level. Families threaten to leave the program entirely; no doubt many troops in the already-declining and financially-enfeebled organization will close down for lack of members. Churches, tremendous BSA supporters through donations and their facilities, have weighed in as well. President and CEO of the Southern Baptist Convention Executive Committee Frank Page has expressed his dismay, claiming that the Boy Scouts is “wilting under pressure from some of their corporate sponsors ….” Some Baptists consider revoking BSA charters to expand the Royal Ambassadors program. Similarly, the Assemblies of God said they were “saddened and disappointed” about the proposed changes. The two greatest supporters of the Scouts–the Roman Catholic Church and the Latter Day Saints (Mormons)–have not given official opinions but do strongly support the current gay ban. No doubt many Cub Scout Packs and Boy Scout Troops will face many revoked charters from their historically most loyal supporters.

Shamefully, the United Methodist Church leadership applauded the loosened standards. UM Men leader Gilbert Hanke claimed, “These proposed changes are actually more consistent with the current Book of Discipline.” Jim Winkler, General Secretary of the perpetually leftist General Board of Church and Society, cooed, “United Methodists affirm that all persons are individuals of sacred worth, created in the image of God. Our local churches can now pursue an outreach unfettered by arbitrary restrictions that carry with them potential negative legal consequences or obloquy, and can instead seek to live together with all persons in Christian community, welcoming, forgiving and loving one another.” Both men seemed to forget that official United Methodist social teaching in the Book of Discipline encourages local churches to support traditional monogamous heterosexual marriage. The Discipline also decries same-sex marriage and active homosexuality as incompatible with Christian teaching.

It is almost as if the BSA serves as a proxy battlefield between orthodox church leadership and the LGBT movement. Whereas the main theater of conflict is directly within church conventions and synods themselves, now the two forces are fighting over sexuality on a different plane, in which both sides are not direct agents. Instead, they lend their influence and resources to a third party (the BSA) to decide the outcome.

The leaders of the LGBT agenda have long targeted the Boy Scouts. First, they persecuted the organization legally, through juridical attacks that reached all the way up to the Supreme Court. Even though the BSA is a volunteer private organization, it found itself under fire from both prosecutors and the media. Now they have assaulted the BSA at a much weaker spot: finances.

For over a century now, the Boy Scouts have sacrificially given men and boys impressive skill sets, leadership training, outdoors experience, and fond memories. Almost every community in the United States has been blessed by service projects carried out by diligent Scouts. Indeed, the famous Norman Rockwell lithographs do not fall far from the reality of the Scouting experience. They almost serve as an icon for what is best in America. Now a new generation of iconoclasts seek to destroy this heritage in their crusade against all things patriotic and masculine.

Destruction? That’s a pretty strong term, is it not?

But it is also fitting. The LGBT champions on company boards and positions of cultural leadership that are putting the pressure on the BSA have no love for the organization. If the organization keeps its current standards, it loses big-time corporate donors. If the Scouts change their policy, then they are going to lose grassroots participation via facilities, membership, and funds from many families and churches. Either way the organization is hurt badly. No one who really loves an organization tries to annihilate it in such a manner. Sure, a few former Scouts are gay and would perhaps like to see it reform its ways, but other gay Scouts I have talked to would rather the organization keep its standards rather than face immanent destruction.

These days, lack of affirmation for the LGBT agenda IS intolerance since not speaking out against “heterosexism” is considered the same as not speaking out against racism. And it is probably not going to stop with excluding leaders–there will be more demands (perhaps insisting the BSA offer sexual education rather than leaving that responsibility to parents, a custom that has come under fire before).

Most of those that have put on the pressure on the relatively feeble Boy Scouts of America do not give a care for the organization. It is just another casualty in their culture war.

Let us stop calling the parties responsible for this turn of events the “LGBT movement” and “sexual equality activists” and name them for what they really are: the Alphabet Mafia.


  • Ben Welliver

    Whatever happened to common sense?

    The Boy Scouts ban gay male scoutmasters for the same reason the Girl Scouts ban male scoutmasters. DUH!

    As a former scout and scoutmaster, it really grieves me to see this. Campouts and other scouting activities are wonderful, and heretofore INNOCENT, pleasures. To sexualize such activities and to put boys in the position of prey for sexual predators is just wrong. I wish I could be optimistic, but given the pressure the BSA is probably going to cave.

    That leaves the obvious question open: If there are openly gay scoutmasters, what parent with a functioning brain would allow his son into that troop?

    • blah

      Wow, all gay men are child molesters? Way to blatantly display your bigotry, Ben! I’d rather have a gay man as a scoutmaster, who at least would treat my son like a human being, than a hateful bigoted Christian like you.

  • http://www.reasonsforgod.org Carson Weitnauer

    Agreed. And losing the grassroots membership of the BSA is worse than corporate sponsors. We need to stand with Chick-fil-a, the BSA, and other groups under assault. The agenda is clear: get one group at a time. So we need courageous solidarity to prevent bullying behavior. Bullies don’t stop because of weakness. The loving response is a gracious and strong no.

  • Quintus

    the Alphabet Inquisition, more likely, and they’d rather burn at the stake than evangelize and convert!

  • Gus Ravenwheel

    Bart…

    The change faces great opposition within the Scouting community and on the grassroots level. Families threaten to leave the program entirely

    And yet, the opposition to the ban on gay folk is also a grassroots opposition. I grew up in the Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts. I looked forward to getting my kids into scouting when I was a young parent. But eventually, I decided I could not enroll my kids into an organization that was openly biased against gay folk.

    So, when people say idiotic things like, “If there are openly gay scoutmasters, what parent with a functioning brain would allow his son into that troop?”… the answer is anyone who knows that to be gay is not equal to being a pedophile. That is just an asinine question that comes from the darkest sort of bigotry. (Ben, I’m sorry to be blunt, but that is truly an offensive, ugly, biased question).

    This is how we work as a nation and community: We don’t go to war with those with whom we disagree. We don’t kill or threaten with violence those with whom we disagree. But, if we think there is a public organization that holds destructive, oppressive, prejudiced positions, we in our great nation are free to protest that organization, to boycott it, to not support it.

    That is what these sponsors are doing and no doubt thanks at least in part to justice work on behalf of LGBT groups, and that is our right as lovers of liberty in this free land. In the same way, if the Southern Baptists don’t like the new policy, they are free to boycott or withdraw support from the Boy Scouts (and no doubt, some people will) – that is their right to do so.

    My kids are grown now, but maybe, one day, my grandkids might get into scouting if it progresses to a more just organization. Good for them!

    Bart…

    The LGBT champions on company boards and positions of cultural leadership that are putting the pressure on the BSA have no love for the organization.

    And your evidence for this is…??

    Speaking at least for myself and my community, we are a group of people who LOVE much about the Boy Scouts: Teaching a love of nature, teaching responsibility, teaching about community and giving back? That IS the sort of progressive organization that we “liberals” love!

    It sounds rather paranoid and ridiculous to make an unfounded charge and it is easily dismissed as more evidence of simple bigotry and hatred on your parts, to make up such scurrilous false charges. Shame on you.

    • Ben Welliver

      Trust me on this, nothing you could say could possibly affect me in the slightest. Don’t judge all men by the ones you socialize with with. Not all men are high-strung and hypersensitive. When one of the hypersensitive bozos throws around words like asinine, paranoid, offensive, biased, scurrilous, bigot, hatred, etc., I just laugh. “Consider the source.” It’s hard to take seriously someone whose stock ending for his hissyfit is “Shame on you.” Come up with something new, that sounds so 3rd-grade. Talk like an adult male for a change.

      You really do have a twisted view of the world when you call a great organization like the Boy Scouts “destructive, oppressive, prejudiced.” That crap works in liberal circles, but when you dialogue with adults, they may ask you probing questions, such as WHAT or WHO the Boy Scouts are destroying and oppressing. I spent a lot of years with them, and somehow, heaven knows how, I managed to miss the destruction and oppressive.

      • Gus Ravenwheel

        Hmmm, I believe that a healthy sense of shame is something that is missing in this modern world, a point many conservative folk would agree with (unfortunately, many conservative folk wouldn’t differentiate between healthy and unhealthy shame… but that’s another topic.) It’s a shame that you would belittle someone for using shame in a healthy manner.

        I guess you know that I can find a model for this in no one less than St Paul and many of the writers of the Bible?

        I say this to your shame.

        Indeed. Have you grown so worldly and calloused to the ways of holiness that you have no sense of shame, sir?

        Ben…

        You really do have a twisted view of the world when you call a great organization like the Boy Scouts “destructive, oppressive, prejudiced.”

        Did I call the BSA “destructive, oppressive, prejudiced…”? No, I didn’t. Look at my actual words. What I’m saying, in case it isn’t clear, is that the particular policy that eliminates one segment of healthy, moral adults from participation based on prejudices (“You can’t leave them with children!! They’re actually pedophiles!”), that policy is wrongheaded, destructive, oppressive.

        Didn’t I just say that we in my community LOVE much/most of what the BSA stands for? Look at my words, Ben, before making mistaken assumptions.

        Who are the BSA hurting by this policy? That’s easy. They’re pushing on a false and slanderous demonization that “the gays” can’t be trusted with children. That is observably false and stupid. It hurts the kids by passing on ancient prejudices. It hurts society to pass on and support such slanderous demonizations.

        Beyond that, it hurts the organization because people like me won’t be part of such an organization. Even if they’re 99% good, that one policy is a deal breaker. It would be very much like if the BSA didn’t allow black folk in their organization. “Well,” someone might say, “except for that ancient and ugly racism, it’s a pretty danged good organization!”

        No, such ugly prejudices are a deal breaker for many people and that hurts the organization itself. And they appear to be recognizing that and, God willing, they’ll make a change to this policy and if so, good for them.

        Ben…

        I spent a lot of years with them, and somehow, heaven knows how, I managed to miss the destruction and oppressive.

        Someone has yet to teach you how to be ashamed of comparing gay folk to pedophiles. Telling lies is wrong, you know. Slander is wrong, you know. These are not part of the kingdom of God nor of even the association of good and moral society aside from the church.

      • Ben Welliver

        Yeah, I think a “healthy sense of shame” would be a good thing. For example, I wish the dementos going after the Boy Scouts would feel shame over telling a private organization what it can and can’t do. If you and your cohorts want access to boys, start your own organzation, call it the Inclusive Tree-Hugging Compassion Corps or Junior Gender-Benders or something like that. All those millions of Scout-hating liberals will rush to enroll their kiddies – assuming there are all that many parents who would be that stupid.

        I love your line “It hurts the organization because people like me won’t be part of such an organization.” Wow, that is egotism on steroids. Hurts the BSA? How? Troops folding? Support staff getting laid off? No Christmas bonus this year? Hurts the BSA not to have you as a scoutmaster – sheesh. Poor me, suffering under the tutelage of that straight scoutmaster and his, as you put it, “ancient prejudices,” which must be liberal code for what non-liberals would call “standards” or “decency.” Anyone with a “healthy sense of shame” would not refer to the Judeo-Christian ethical tradition as “ancient prejudices.” People who hate Christianity should move on to something else instead of trying to convince Christians that if we were REAL Christians we would support all their silly pet causes.

        Despite your infantile “Shame on you!” tagline, I feel no shame – zip! – about being pro-family, pro-life, pro-God – also pro-freedom, since I feel no compulsion to bend a private organization (one that’s done a world of good, I might add) to a twisted political agenda.

  • Mike

    Easy. Merck, Intel, and UPS, for example? boycott it. It´s our right too.

  • Mark

    Barton, you make some very insightful, valid and hard-hitting comments here.

    One point that’s very important to understand is this: despite the way the media typically reports on this topic, the Scouts have never made an issue of anyone’s sexuality unless they make an issue of it themselves. This certainly was true when I was a member of the Boy Scouts.

    The notion that gay Scouts (a miniscule percentage) have been subjected to untold persecution is simply not accurate, but it is part of a larger, misleading narrative that has been driven into American minds, in Pavlovian fashion, by well-placed information sources (we have, therefore, grown to reflexively believe it–see Gus).

    The biggest contributors to Scouting do not favor this policy change, so the funding will likely be more adversely affected if a change is enacted. So, the Scouts will probably try their best to find a 3rd way, and this could antagonize both sides of the argument, possibly leading even more quickly to the BSA’s demise.

    Another thing to be aware of is that research in sexuality is often highly subjective and agenda-driven. Therefore, it is difficult to draw firm conclusions, despite what some “research” suggests (and there is a disproportionate number of homosexuals engaged in this research).

    Homosexuality and pedophilia may, in fact, be more highly correlated than heterosexuality and pedophilia. We really don’t know the answer to that question, but we have plenty of people who, for political reasons, say that we do (keep in mind that the Catholic priests who engaged in pedophilia were mainly male-on-male predators).

    If those agitating for a change in this policy really do love the BSA then why have they mounted a scorched-earth approach by attacking Scouting on virtually all fronts for many years? Indeed, I think there is much evidence to support the premise of this article.

    • J S Lang

      Good comments, Mark. Maybe I’m showing my age, but thinking back to being a fifth-grader, I don’t recall the kids in my troop identifying themselves as “gay” or “straight,” and I’m including the boys who had already hit puberty. For a group of people who whine about it not being anyone’s business what goes on in the bedroom, gay activists sure make an issue of people’s sexual inclinations. Since I was born back in the Dark Ages,I guess I should be thankful that scoutmasters Palmer and Martin didn’t bother to tell us if they were attracted to males or females. For people who have sex on their minds (constantly), it must be hard for activists to imagine that neither scoutmasters or little boys on a camping trip are giving sex all that much thought. Why don’t we admit what’s going on here? Aside from just overcoming one more “barrier,” they want another avenue to indoctrinate kids. Scoutmasters should stick to knot tying and first aid, not telling poor little shy Kevin that he’s showing signs of being gay. I’d rank the indoctrination as more of a real threat than pedophilia. You can be sure that any man who would openly identify as gay to a group of kids is going to be engaged in some hardline brainwashing. They get enough PC crapola in schools, surely there ought to be some place kids can go where some obnoxious liberal isn’t haranguing them with their stupid opinions.

      • BCody

        You hit the nail on the head! That is EXACTLY what is going on here! Thank you, JS! Perhaps Gus Ravenwheel should read your comment and keep his mouth shut; he is only proving your point by his argument. Thanks again!

      • Gus Ravenwheel

        How is my asking reasonable questions to obviously problematic comments proving his point? That doesn’t make any sense.

        Where is what JS said…

        I don’t recall the kids in my troop identifying themselves as “gay” or “straight,” and I’m including the boys who had already hit puberty. For a group of people who whine about it not being anyone’s business what goes on in the bedroom, gay activists sure make an issue of people’s sexual inclinations.

        ? Who does? What we make an issue of is the prejudice of not allowing good people to take part in scouting because of prejudices. Where in that sentence is ANY reference to someone’s sexual inclinations?

        We want to “indoctrinate” kids?! What is that based on? We are just asking for justice to allow Scout Master Smith to take part, regardless of his orientation. WHERE in that is an effort to indoctrinate? Where in that is there any mention of people’s sexual inclinations?

        And “telling shy Kevin he’s showing signs of being gay…” is “more of a real threat” than pedophilia?? How in the world does that make ANY rational sense?!

        “Oh, yes, little Timmy WAS molested by the pedophile, which was sort of bad, but not NEARLY as bad as Scout Master Smith having a conversation with shy Kevin about his orientation questions…”

        ?? Are you SERIOUS?

        And how is asking these obvious questions to such ridiculous points “proving” anyone’s argument? They UNDERMINE the argument, yes (especially when the questions go unaddressed), but proving it? I can’t see how that makes any rational sense.

        Dan

      • J S Lang

        I’m a firm believer in this principle: Don’t solve a problem that doesn’t exist. I’m sure some gay men do serve as scoutmasters, but they probably aren’t OUT. If gay men want to be scoutmasters, how about not bringing up the subject? I don’t know normal men who introduce themselves with “Hi, I’m Jim, and I’m straight.” Does gay Kenny have to tell everyone he’s gay? Is it anyone’s business? I don’t know people who run around and ask, Are you straight or gay. I don’t understand this neurotic need to advertise it to the world what they do in the bedroom. Why can’t you be individuals, judged on your character? Instead you turn every social encounter into a dramatic scene, where each person you meet has to declare himself pro-gay or not (and the “not” option gets construed as “hates gays”). Lots of people have creepy little secrets, I don’t see how it improves things to broadcast them to the world. I smell a lot of insecurity, people desperately needing affirmation by others. If you’re so sure your lifestyle is OK, why should you care what anyone thinks? People are sick of all this whining and victimhood nonsense, tired of being constantly guilt-tripped.

  • Gus Ravenwheel

    So, Bart, returning to your titular premise, “How you KNOW the LGBT movement HATES the Boy Scouts…” I have read and re-read your post and I see nothing that would support the conclusion, and certainly nothing that would let you “know” that those who support our gay brothers and sisters “hate” the BSA.

    Where is your evidence?

    Is the sum total of your evidence: They disagree with me and the traditional BSA opinion that gay folk aren’t allowed in the BSA…? Since when is having a difference of opinion evidence of “hatred?”

    As to your final slanderous conclusion, where you suggested you should stoop to name-calling and refer to those who support gay folk the “the Alphabet Mafia…” You can do that, of course. And we could stoop to calling you the Anti-Gay Klan, but is that really an adult way to deal with disagreements? Is it Christian?

    I would suggest that the Christ-ian thing to do would be to, if you have no hard evidence to support your scandalous conclusion (that we “hate” the BSA), then you’d backtrack a bit and admit that, in your zeal, you stated a falsehood.

    Factually speaking, you don’t know that we “hate” the BSA. In fact, looking at the real world evidence that has been presented (even if it is just anecdotal), I have presented you with the testimony that my entire community of folk who support gay people LOVE the ideals of the BSA, except for this one thing, which runs counter to what I learned at church and in the Cub Scouts itself, when I was a child.

    So, I can and have presented evidence that undermines your conclusion. The adult and Christian thing to do would be now to admit you misspoke. It’s okay, brother, it happens. Just admit it, change the false claim and move on. How about it?

    • Mark

      Gus, I it seems you reject the teaching of your own church (Anabaptist). Here is an Anabaptist perspective that you may want to consider: http://www.anabaptists.org/writings/homosex.html

      • Gus Ravenwheel

        The anabaptists, like the Baptists and many other evangelical groups, believe in the concept of the Priesthood of the Believer. Yes, many anabaptists would disagree with me and my church. In fact, we are almost certainly in the minority. But disagreements over a non-essential doctrine happen. It’s okay, it’s part of being human and Christian.

      • Jeremy Baines

        “Non-essential doctrine”? Yeah, very unimportant issue, that’s why Paul never bothered to mention it, also why it was almost completely ignored for 2000 years. Sleep with whoever or whatever you like, no big deal, Christians can disagree over these trivialities. Good thing you and your sorority sisters came along to remind us of these things.

      • Gus Ravenwheel

        Jeremy, most evangelicals (and probably others) would agree that there are essentials to the Christian faith – That God is a God of love, that Jesus is the son of God, that we are saved by grace, not by works – and there are non-essential doctrines. Included in “non-essential” is the “sin-status” of various behaviors. Some Christians think that believers can smoke and drink and curse and get divorced while other Christians disagree. That we disagree about some behaviors and whether or not this particular behavior is a sin, this is not essential to our salvation.

        For anyone who would insist that you must be “right” about every sin behavior in order to be saved, they have moved to the heresy of a works-based salvation.

        Am I mistaken? Are you saying that you believe we must be “correct” on every possible behavior in order to be saved?

        Beyond that, have I said that you can “sleep with whoever you want…”? Is that the position of people who disagree with you? OR, did you just misrepresent our actual position? (clearly the latter). Does the Bible say that we should not bear false witness, we should not slander or twist the views of others? Yes, it does. Does that mean that you are not saved, because you engaged in behavior that most would agree is cited in the Bible as “not part of the Kingdom of God…”? No, it does not mean that. It doesn’t mean that because we are not saved – YOU are not saved – by your perfection. We are saved by God’s grace through faith in Jesus.

        Thanks be to God for God’s grace. May we all embrace that grace that has been showered so freely upon us and return the favor, walking in the steps of our Lord Jesus Christ.

        “Sorority sisters…?” What does that mean? Is that some attempt to belittle people who disagree with you by name-calling? Is that part of Kingdom living?

      • Jeremy Baines

        You are correct about the Bible not saying anything about smoking. You are incorrect about everything else, as usual. The New Testament says that your favorite hobby is a bar to entering the kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 6:9-10–there are Bibles available online if you don’t own one). If you don’t like that, take it up with Paul, who apparently regarded it as a deal-breaker. Having read Paul often, I think he would trounce you in a debate and would not flinch if you said you found him “offensive.” Paul made a career out of being offensive – that is what the gospel does, according to the Bible, it divides people, as Jesus said it would (Matt 10:34). Some of Paul’s audience converted – others stoned him (Acts 14:19). Figuratively speaking, the pagans are still stoning him today, even though many of those pagans attend church, and many are clergy (even bishops). Liberals loathe Paul, which is one of the many reasons I love Paul. A guy who offends that crowd is a true hero.

        I don’t see why you think “sorority sisters” would be belittling. We get the message from the LGBTQXYZEGBDF____[add new letters here as needed] “community” (funny euphemism!) that gender means nothing, that it is a social construct, men and women are equal, gender can be changed, etc etc. So if you consider “sisters” belittling, does that mean you hate women? That you oppose sisterhood? That men and women are different? Is that part of kingdom living?

      • Gus Ravenwheel

        Okay, I’ll not respond to a bunch of ad hom attacks and strawman fallacies. Suffice for me to just restate my actual positions:

        1. It is part of orthodox Christian teaching that we are NOT saved by being “right” on a variety of behaviors; that is, we are not saved by never failing to be mistaken on behaviors – in fact, we are guaranteed in the Bible that we WILL be mistaken sometimes (Paul tells us that “Now, we see as through a glass, darkly, but then we shall fully know…”). Beyond the testimony of the Bible, it is just observable that human beings are not always going to be right on every point.

        2. It is part of orthodox Christian teaching that we are saved by God’s grace. Those who would demand that people be “right” (“right,” according to whom? Who is going to make the final official call on Biblical interpretation and God’s will?) on all behaviors and their sin status – or even a vague, amorphous subset of behaviors and their sin status – are teaching away from Salvation by Grace and towards the heresy of a works-based salvation.

        3. Calling people names (“sorority sisters”) happens when you use a term with the intent of belittling. If your intent in using “sorority sisters” was to honor womanhood, community and gay folk, then I apologize. It seemed to me that you were NOT trying to honor womanhood, community and gay folk, but just the opposite. Was your intent to honor gay folk and women?

        4. I happen to love Paul, along with all the writers of the Bible. Paul is up there amongst my favorites. As is true for my pastor and many of my so-called “liberal” church member friends (there are some few who find Paul’s adherence to cultural mores of the day to be less-than-heroic, but I suspect most of us recognize how irrational and unfair it is to judge an ancient people on modern moral standards – and vice versa).

        5. It is not my point that disagreeing with others is offensive – I am disagreeing with you, after all.

        6. You say that I’m “incorrect about everything else…” does that mean that you believe that one MUST be right about all sinful behavior in order to be saved? That is a heretical notion, in the orthodox Church, my young friend (I’m assuming you’re young, based on your brash and shallow reasoning/discussion skills, I hope I’m not mistaken. If so, my apologies.)

        7. Re: your rather immature “Bibles available” snark – I am turning 50 years old next month. I’ve read the Bible my entire reading life (and my parents read it to me before then) and continue to read it. While still no expert, I am not unfamiliar with the Bible. In fact, I hold my position on these topics precisely because of what the Bible says.

        If you decide to have an adult, or even a Christian, conversation, I’m glad to talk with you my brother. But if you’re just going to be stuck on stupid and slander, I will wipe the dust from my feet. I’d urge you to embrace a bit of humility, good sir, and a bit of respect in conversations with others, especially complete strangers.

        That is the teaching of the Bible, after all.

        So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience; bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you. Beyond all these things put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful.

        ~St Paul, in Colossians

        I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace… Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.

        ~St Paul, in Ephesians

        Don’t have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels. And the Lord’s servant must not quarrel; instead, he must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful. Those who oppose him he must gently instruct

        ~St Paul, in 2 Timothy

        If anyone thinks himself to be religious, and yet does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this man’s religion is worthless… God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.

        ~St James

        Good words to live by. Even Paul’s… but then, as noted, I’m a fan.

      • Jeremy Baines

        There were no “ad hom attacks” or “strawmen” in my last post. I don’t think liberals have a clue what “ad hom” means, they just know to say that when they can’t argue.

        I don’t buy your “brother” act, since I don’t apply the name “brother” to everyone. The Bible does not say all human beings are brothers. The New Testament uses the Greek word adelphoi, “brothers,” to refer to fellow Christians. No Christian is perfect, but to engage in a lifestyle that is clearly prohibited goes way beyond “nobody’s perfect.” I have a married acquaintance who has “monogamy issues,” and though he’s a good father and apparently treats his wife well, he isn’t faithful. However, I still regard him as “brother” because he isn’t trying to justify what he does and claim that adultery is OK. My issue with lefties is that their method of dealing with sexual sin is to say that there is no sexual sin, other than not getting any. I can see the attraction of liberalism, it allows you to copulate whenever and with whoever, no guilt, same as animals in heat, multiple partners, not even remotely connected to love. That type is not my “brother.” i can’t feel a spiritual connection to someone who isn’t capable of love.

        Regarding your various quotes from Paul: the epistles were directed at Christians, so Paul was urging harmony among people who were of the same faith. Paul did not mandate unity between Christians and false teachers – just the opposite! “Walk in love” and “be kind” do not mean condoning what we know is wrong. you might convince some five-year-old that “walk in love” equals “be pro-gay,” but I’m not that naive. I understand why activists want access to young children

      • Gus Ravenwheel

        Jeremy…

        I don’t buy your “brother” act, since I don’t apply the name “brother” to everyone.

        But, in fact, I am a Christian. And neither height not depth, nor principalities nor powers, nor some guy on the internet can separate me from the love and salvation of God.

        If words and traditions mean anything, I am a Christian. Orthodox Christianity tells us that those who recognize their sinful nature, repent of their sins, throw their faith on God’s grace through faith in Jesus, the son of God, that these people are saved. This ad hom attack (and really, what does my salvation status have to do with the points I made?) is not only a distraction from the topic at hand, it is false, by orthodox Christian tenets.

        So, leaving aside that ad hom attack, do you have anything to address on the points I made that are ON topic, not an ad hom distraction?

        For instance, I said that I don’t see where the author can rationally validate his contention that he “knows” that LGBT supporters “hate” the Boy Scouts. He has offered no evidence to support the conclusion and I have offered evidence by way of personal testimony to contradict the conclusion. To THAT point, do you have anything to say?

        Jeremy…

        The Bible does not say all human beings are brothers. The New Testament uses the Greek word adelphoi, “brothers,” to refer to fellow Christians.

        Not factually correct. Generally speaking, in the bible, the terms “brother,” “sister” or “chidren” are used to speak of the community of God’s followers. But at least in one case – Acts 17, where Paul is addressing the pagan Athenians – Paul refers to all of humanity as God’s offspring. In at least some sense, we ARE all brothers and sisters, fellow children of a Creator God.

        Not that this has to do with the point I actually made, just clarifying a misstatement. You’re welcome…

        Jeremy…

        No Christian is perfect, but to engage in a lifestyle that is clearly prohibited goes way beyond “nobody’s perfect.”

        You’re begging the question. My faith community has considered the Bible and we take it very seriously and our conclusion is that clearly, marriage for gay or straight folk is a good thing. The point being that not everyone agrees with the traditional interpretation/understanding on that topic. Now, I believe you all (and it used to be MY position, too, so me too, at the time) are clearly and abundantly wrong/mistaken on that point. BUT, just because I think you are mistaken, does not mean that I don’t think you are not saved. And why is that? Because I recognize that it is not my or your perfect understanding of all sin behaviors that saves us, but rather, it is God’s GRACE by which we are saved. Thanks be to God!

        Jeremy…

        My issue with lefties is that their method of dealing with sexual sin is to say that there is no sexual sin, other than not getting any.

        And yet, here is this “leftie” and that is not my position. So, rather than making up a strawman, why not deal with MY actual positions? If you’re going to chase off-topic rabbit trails, at least do so in a rational way dealing with real data, rather than fairie tale stories?

        Jeremy…

        I can see the attraction of liberalism, it allows you to copulate whenever and with whoever, no guilt, same as animals in heat, multiple partners, not even remotely connected to love.

        Again, in the real world, that is demonstrably false. That is not my position nor is it the position of anyone in my church or faith community. Are there “liberals” out there who think thusly? I’m sure there are. Just as there are some conservatives who no doubt think thusly. But it isn’t my position. So, if you’re going to chase off-topic rabbit trails, at least do so in a rational way dealing with real data, rather than fairie tale stories?

        Jeremy…

        That type is not my “brother.” i can’t feel a spiritual connection to someone who isn’t capable of love.

        Wow. So not only are “liberals” not Christian, in your mind, they are not capable of love? I guess you think they’re sort of some sort of subhuman creature, more devil than human?

        Literally demonizing fellow Christians is no way to make your case, dear man.

        Jeremy…

        Regarding your various quotes from Paul: the epistles were directed at Christians, so Paul was urging harmony among people who were of the same faith. Paul did not mandate unity between Christians and false teachers…

        And yet, I am a Christian. Just because you think that “He disagrees with me on this point, therefore, he is not a Christian,” does not make me not a Christian. What makes me a Christian is that Jesus is Lord of my life. I have repented of my sins and seek to walk in the steps of my Savior, Jesus the son of God, by God’s grace.

        If you’re going to chase off-topic rabbit trails, then deal with the actual circumstances at play: Where specifically in my testimony am I off? Am I not a Christian because I trust in God’s grace for salvation, rather than works – is that where I err? Am I not a Christian because I believe that Jesus is the son of God and that he offers us salvation by Grace, is that where I err?

        Be specific.

        Or better yet, admit your mistake, repent of your brash and graceless behavior and move on, dealing with my on-topic comments for their own merits. There is no shame in admitting error, only in arrogantly ignoring the evidence and staying in the path of sin.

      • Bart Gingerich

        Gus Ravenwheel, i.e. Dan Trabue, your tenacity always engenders awe.

      • Gus Ravenwheel

        Well, while I appreciate the awe, Mr Gingerich, I’d rather have the respect of answers to the questions. I fear you are spreading falsehoods and that is a pretty serious thing. You don’t really “know” that we “hate” the BSA, right? You were engaging in hyperbole, or poetic license or something other than literal truth/facts, right?

        As I have shown, I don’t hate the BSA. I LOVE their ideals… except for the whole “gay” problem, which is a serious one. I would have probably been in the BSA, supporting them, having my kids involved, etc, if they just weren’t biased. So, factually speaking, I and my community of faith don’t hate the BSA. How about, rather than being awed by me (and really, I’m honored…), a simple response to the charges?

        Oh, and while you’re at it, can you get it changed so I can post as my actual name? Someone there must have blocked me or something, because I can’t post if I use Dan Trabue or my email…

  • Rebecca Alford

    Wow. A perfect of example of worshiping the Bible instead of God. Using the Bible to justify and incite hate and belittle others is so far from what Christ would want us to do. Why hijack Christianity to practice and promote homophobia, sexism, racism or any other form of intolerance or hatred? So many have fallen disgracefully far from the true meaning of Christ’s teachings about loving one another as he loved us.

    • Mark

      Pointing out what the Bible actually says is not worshiping it. The simple act of disagreeing passionately is not hatemongering; neither is it engaging in the various “isms.” That act is getting a bit old, don’t you think? But it’s certainly easier than rationally and Biblically engaging the issues.

      • Sandy N

        They can’t talk without reverting to “isms.” In their world that passes for deep thought.

        Isn’t is sad when trying to live your life by the Bible is referred to as “hijacking Christianity”? She claims to know the “true meaning of Christianity” then says it’s wrong to draw that meaning from the Bible.

      • http://jdajr.wordpress.com jdajr

        Rebecca like many others has twisted or left out biblical truth to support her misconstrued Christianity which is not Christianity at all but rather a form of universalism.

    • Dave Gingrich

      Rebecca Alford. HATE is the LGBT position toward the Boy Scouts. Standing up for morality in the face of political correctness (read: dishonesty) is true LOVE.

    • Willie

      Rebecca, you claim to know “the true meaning of Christ’s teachings about loving one another as he loved us,” but I’m curious as to how you came to this knowledge. Was it by reading the Bible, which you seem to denegrate, firsthand, or are you merely repeating someone else’s interpretation? In any case, your positions seem inconsistent with one another. It seems like all of the “hykacking” of Christianity of which you speak comes from LGBT supporters who rely on biblical misinterptretations as the cornerstones of their arguments. For example, liberals often attempt to use the argument that Jesus commanded us to love one another (John 13:34-35) as a means of pushing an agenda that condones a homosexual lifestyle. However, this argument is fundamentally flawed in that while Jesus may love everyone (including murders and thieves), he never said that one must also condone a lifestyle that is not in alignment with God’s teachings. Consider the famous passage when Jesus went up to the Mount of Olives, as found at John 8:4-11: “They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act. Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou? This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not. So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her. And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground. And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst. When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee? She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.” Here, the last part of the story is what liberals miss: “go, and sin no more!” Thus, while we should not condemn others, for such condemnation is not within our authority (“Judge not, lest we be judged.”), we certainly have no obligation to condone and support a sinful lifestyle. While we are all made in God’s image, and some may be born with homosexual tendancies, we, having free will, must refuse to act on those tendancies; just like a person born with anger and murdurous tendancies must refrain from assalting and killing. Therefore, if you’re going to use the Bible as a sword for the gay agenda, try reading the Bible first; it is very enlightening, and you may find that it works even better as a shield in support of the current BSA ban on actively homosexual lifestyles!

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  • Gus Ravenwheel

    So, Mr Gingerich, should I take your silence to mean that you have NO support for your false claim and yet you aren’t going to retract it or admit that what you MEANT was “I SUSPECT that gay folk don’t like the BSA, but I have no real evidence to support that hunch…”?

    Normally, I try to give more time for people to respond, but here at this IRD site, this is a habit you all have: Make unsupported claims and yet you won’t retract or admit you misspoke, and when you’re called on it, you just ignore reality in favor of slander and false charges.

    This is not of Christ, my brothers and sisters.

    • http://gravatar.com/galacticexplorer galacticexplorer

      You know, Gus, I just want to say thanks… thanks for displaying a much more Christ-like attitude than the author of this article or the many people here who insult you and treat you like a creature instead of a man. It is encouraging to me to see Christians who are willing to face down this sort of bigotry, but with gentle words and nothing but truth.

      It gets tiring to be treated like I am not a human being… to be told what I feel, why I am broken, and where my problems come from because I am a lesbian. It seems that gays are seen only as “sinners” and not people. As soon as my orientation is discovered, suddenly most Christians become unable to empathize with me anymore, and I am simply a thing to be fixed, or a disease to be cured. I’m tired of being told “you hate morals” or “you hate BSA” … to be viewed like an object for others to project their anger on rather than a human being with struggles, joys, short-comings, and strengths. I’m more than a problem to be fixed or despised. I wish more people could see that.

      Reading your replies and arguments inspires me and reminds me that I don’t have to give up on my faith because of the amount of abuse and cruelty I’ve suffered from it. There are still people like you. So thanks. I wish I could talk with you more, because I could sure use a mentor right now to help me recover from the damage other Christians have done to me, but just reading your words has helped.

      • Mark

        “It seems that gays are seen only as “sinners” and not people.”

        Wrong.

        3 points:

        1) Don’t confuse condemnation of behavior with condemnation of personhood. This is another straw-argument put forward to engender sympathy and stereotype the opposition.

        2) One’s sexual orientation is not the main thing that defines personhood. Anyone who thinks so is unbalanced in their assessment.

        3) It’s not mainly about FEELING good about oneself. Feelings are transient and often untrustworthy. Reason/Biblical truth/natural law are more trustworthy and consistent than feelings.

        4) Gus’s narrative may be comforting to some, but please realize that most of his opinions are based on misinterpretation.

        • galacticexplorer

          Excuse me, but please stop accusing me of straw-man arguments when I’m not arguing. I am thanking this man and sharing some of my experience with how Christians often seem to stop listening or treating me like a human being or empathizing with me when they find out I am gay. This is my experience. I assure you, I wish I had made it up for sympathy, but I did not. Please don’t tell me that I did. With all due respect, you would have no way of knowing that.

          Note that I’m not trying to change anyone’s opinion about whether or not homosexuality is a sin. That is not my intent and never will be (at least so far as I can foresee). Rather, I am interested in the way that (I presume) well-meaning Christians present themselves to the LGBT community. There is a huge amount of misinformation and misunderstanding between the two groups and, since I was raised conservative Christian, I have taken a pretty good look at both. Sadly, the two sides are rarely interested in listening to each other and instead get belligerent and perpetuate lies and misunderstandings. That is why I commended Gus for actually being civil and refusing to make assumptions about his audience and exhibiting a Christ-like attitude, even if he disagreed with many people here.

          If you are interested in having a civil discussion, actually learning what my experiences are instead of writing them off as “straw-arguments to get sympathy” and hearing me out about things that I often hear Christians say that are actually terribly hurtful and irresponsible when viewed from the “other side”, I welcome you. However, it seems you’ve already stated blatantly that you think anything I’d have to say is hogwash by dismissing me as you did. If you change your mind, please write. Otherwise, have a good day, and I wish you all the best.

      • Mark

        I will probably not trouble you again other than to say I think your response is exceptionally defensive and that you should unemotionally ponder the points I put forth.

        At least there is one thing you said we have some agreement on: “Sadly, the two sides are rarely interested in listening to each other and instead get belligerent and perpetuate lies and misunderstandings.”

        You probably don’t believe it, but I sincerely wish you well.

        • galacticexplorer

          Thank you for your well-wishes. No fear, I try to make a point of taking people at their word regarding their intentions. All the best!

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  • http://www.chapfactor.com Silva

    Reblogged this on Bent World and commented:
    There is no stopping the LGBT crowd from beginning its own organization. I suppose, however, that even if it did, it would close its membership and leadership to all those who fundamentally disagree with its immoral and unbiblical position. Look at what happened to the Girl Scouts? It can have no other motive, then, but to destroy the Boy Scouts who, incidentally has graduated men who then have contributed to the freedom and success that forms the foundations of these hate organizations. LGBT is simply a morality-crushing wrecking ball. Yet, it is hollow on the inside as time will show.

  • http://ryftkohiah.wordpress.com Woody Armstrong

    Good post! Thanks for standing up for the truth of the gospel! I’m trying to begin doing this on-line as well. The site I’ve set up has and will have many audios and videos on it to make learning what Christians need to in this present evil world as simple as possible. I think you’ll like it. Here’s the address: RYFTKOHIAH.WordPress.com. I’ve just started it last year and I’m trying to get this out to as many people as I can, so please pass it on.
    Thank you.
    As a brother under the blood of Jesus Christ,
    Joseph Armstrong

  • Jim

    The decision has been made. All that is left is politics and timing. By even considering the change, the leadership of the Boy Scouts have outed, so to speak, their stance on the issue. If the vote fails, it will purely be the result of politics within the ranks. But unless the ranks purge the leadership, the issue will arise at a more opportunistic time — the same continues to happen in the mainstream churches. Without a purge, a no vote is empty, a meanlingless veil.

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  • http://lightshipchaplain.wordpress.com Lightship Chaplain

    Reblogged this on Lightship Ministries.