From the Assistant Editor

Scouting outside the norm

I am so proud of the Boy Scouts of America! Offering a place for young girls inside the circle of “emerging manhood” is a step in the right direction. I mean if girls want to learn to bag a deer, gut a fish, wrestle a bear, tame a moose and wear a red handkerchief (in their right back pocket), all the more power to them. But what about young boys who want to learn how to bag a receptacle, fry a fish, wrestle bed sheets, tame a guy, and wear a blue handkerchief (in their left back pocket)? If I were my younger self at 5-years old, I’d want to be a Girl Scout Daisy, and preferably under the helm of Melissa McCarthy!

Hopefully it’s obvious I’m being flippant. Being a homosexual doesn’t require one to be a sissy boy or a lumberjack lesbian, and choosing a scout troupe doesn’t mean you are a homosexual — joining a specific Scout troupe doesn’t make you one or the other. I just think that if one chapter of the Scouts chooses to include the opposite sex, whether for increasing membership or parental request or because it’s progressive, then the other should strongly consider doing the same.

In response to the decision by the BSA, the Girls Scouts refuted: “The benefit of the single-gender environment has been well-documented by educators, scholars, other girl- and youth-serving organizations, and Girl Scouts and their families. Girl Scouts offers a one-of-a-kind experience for girls with a program tailored specifically to their unique developmental needs.”

I do strongly believe that both the Boy and Girl Scouts provide important values and lessons to their longtime-intended demographic, but times are a-changing and modern history shows that most “developmental needs” are not gender exclusive.

I applaud the Boy Scouts for moving responsibly forward regardless of its reasoning. In retrospect I’m annoyed, but not surprised, by the LDS church’s stance.

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