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Boy Scouts & standards

| Saturday, Feb. 2, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

Boy Scouts & standards

My 2010 letter to then-Boy Scouts of America CEO Bob Mazzuca concerning the Scouts' policy toward homosexuality was quoted in your Jan. 29 story “Boy Scouts rethinking ban on gays.” The story expressed my belief that the policy violated the ideals of the Scouting movement. But my rationale for the statement wasn't in the article.

I'd like to clarify. Here is the pertinent excerpt:

“When we seek to define a moral standard for our members, we need to be true to Scouting's inclusive religious principles. It's hypocritical for us to insist that our boys be respectful of all religions when we impose conservative Christian morality on people of all faiths when evaluating the moral fitness of Scouters. It seems arrogant to the point of ridiculous to tell a gay Lutheran pastor or Episcopal bishop that a gay parishioner is unfit to serve her congregation's Scout troop as Scoutmaster.

“There are many earnest people of faith who believe that homosexuality is part of God's plan; that what really matters to God is how we treat the people we love, not who they are. Perhaps it's more appropriate to allow each chartered organization the latitude to divine for itself which way its moral compass points. The BSA should defend a Reformed Jewish synagogue's right to include gay leaders with the same zeal with which it defends a Roman Catholic parish's right to exclude them.”

Bob Barrage

Harrison

The writer is the scoutmaster for Birdville Troop 186 in Harrison.

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