boy scout postage stamp
A Boy Scouts of America postage stamp.

End to ban on gay Boy Scout leaders will go to national board vote

boy scout postage stamp

A Boy Scouts of America postage stamp.

DALLAS (Reuters) - The Boy Scouts of America Executive Committee unanimously approved allowing gay adults to serve as leaders, officials said on Monday, in a major step toward dismantling a policy that has caused deep rifts in the 105-year-old organization.

The group's National Executive Board will meet to ratify the resolution -- which includes exemptions for faith-based groups -- on July 27, the Boy Scouts said in a statement.

"This resolution will allow chartered organizations to select adult leaders without regard to sexual orientation, continuing Scouting's longstanding policy of chartered organizations selecting their leaders," it said.

The resolution approved by the Executive Committee on Friday follows a U.S. Supreme Court ruling in June to allow same-sex marriage nationwide and a call in May from the Boy Scouts president, former U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates, who said the ban on gay leadership needed to change.

The Boy Scouts said in the statement the move reflected "the rapid changes in society and increasing legal challenges at the federal, state and local levels."

According to the Salt Lake Tribune, the proposal also allows for faith-based groups sponsoring troops to  continue the ban.

"This change allows Scouting's members and parents to select local units, chartered to organizations with similar beliefs, that best meet the needs of their families," the BSA statement said. "This change would also respect the right of religious-chartered organizations to continue to choose adult leaders whose beliefs are consistent with their own."

The Salt Lake Tribune also quotes a statement by the  The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which is the BSA's largest chartering organization, issued a statement indicating that this stance was crucial to its continued role as a leading sponsor of Boy Scout units.

The BSA announcement Monday was welcomed by an activist seeking an end to the long-standing policy.

"The Boy Scouts of America's ban on gay adults has stood as a towering example of explicit, institutional homophobia in one of America's most important and recognizable civic organizations," said Zach Wahls, an eagle scout and executive director of Scouts for Equality.

The Irving, Texas-based organization lifted its ban on gay youth in 2013 but continues to prohibit the participation of openly gay adults. The selection last year of Gates as president of the Boy Scouts was seen as an opportunity to revisit the policy.

Gates, as secretary of defense, helped end the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy that barred openly gay individuals from serving in the military.

Earlier, corporate sponsors such as Lockheed Martin and Intel dropped funding from the Boy Scouts in protest of policies considered discriminatory.

The Boy Scouts ban on gay adults received its first major challenge in April when the first openly gay adult was hired as a summer camp leader by the Greater New York Council of Boy Scouts.

Membership in the Boy Scouts of America has been steadily declining during the past decade, but the 2013 decision to allow gay youth contributed to a steeper drop of 7.4 percent from 2013 to 2014, according to organization figures.


  1. I like the ironic statement that, ” the Boy Scouts have stood as a shining example of institutional homophobia” regarding the hiring of gay adult leaders. Is it homophobia or common sense? Some human interactions are necessarily avoided because they are breeding grounds for possible corruption. We are talking about impressionable boys being guided by avowed homosexual men. Truly, I doubt that most gay teens or men want to join the Scouts, so why the push to dismantle an institution that’s 105 years old? It reminds me of women’s push to integrate historically male only clubs. Men don’t feel the need to be members of the Daughters of the American Revolution, or the Girl Scouts…. so why is this battle remotely necessary?

  2. As someone who was an Eagle Scout, I’m thrilled that the BSA is finally taking steps to cast aside their prejudices. Gay men pose no greater threat to children than do straight women–and there are a lot of female leaders in scouts. Besides, as has always been the case, the threat comes not from the gay men who are ‘out,’ but rather from those who, often because of deeply held religious beliefs, suppress and deny their nature, letting it manifest in unhealthy ways.

  3. Women do not generally have the sexual preoccupation that men do.

  4. As a fellow Eagle Scout, I am happy about the Non-sectarian organization of the Boy Scouts moving away from sanctioning sectarian prejudices and discrimination. It is telling that the National Eagle Scout Association (at least its Northeast branches) and the New York Greater Council openly opposed the policy for more than 20 years.

    Churches have their own youth organizations, they can leave the Scouts alone. In the past generation, the anti-gay policy has done nothing but damage to the reputation, funding and reputation of the Scouts. All done to kowtow to one of their larger backers, the Church of Latter Day Saints, in their efforts to subvert the organization into a sectarian youth corps.

  5. There is no common sense in discriminating against people on the basis of such defamatory myths. Btw the anti-gay policy only existed for about a generation or two at the most. Its ironic that a non-sectarian youth organization devoted to citizenship at its core, founded by a gay man, had become sectarian and devoted to treat others as second class citizens.

  6. I fully expected to see this comment, but coming from Greg or JR. And here is some information for you, Dominic.

    For decades, the Boy Scouts have banned gay scout leaders and gay scouts. for decades, they have preferred to have married, certifiably heterosexual scout leaders. And funny thing! For decades they have had a molestation problem, which for decades, they have attempted to cover up, Roman Catholic Church style. All of this information is readily available, detailed by the LA Times.

    Funny, if it weren’t so tragic.tragic for the victims. Tragic for the scouts. Tragic for the gay people unjustly maligned as being dangerous to children. But not so bad for the molesters, who have been reassigned to scout troops, rarely prosecuted,

    Tragic for the victims, the scouts, the gay people unjustly maligned as being dangerous to children. But not so bad for the molesters.

    The average gay man, is no more likely to be a molester than the average straightman. Probably…

  7. Actually, Larry, if my memory serves me correctly, it has been in place since just after World War II. I know that when I work for the Boy Scouts briefly in the early 70s, it was in place then.

  8. Christians, get ready to LEAVE the Boy Scouts of America on July 27th. Just get your boys out of there, period, and find an alternative group. They’re not hard to find anymore.

    Don’t be fooled by fake promises about “religious exemptions.” Please, you already know that stuff is JIVE. Those “exemptions” are temporary at best, and always at the discretion of the national BSA leaders. Leaders who dance like puppets on the strings of the Gay Activists.

    Folks, there is NO chance, post-Obergefell, that the Gay Activists will allow churches to defy them via “religious exemptions”. Some gay guy will simply go to court again, and then you’ll see the BSA cave in automatically (again).

    Besides, after July 27, you Christians will unavoidably be sending your boys to local, regional, state, and national BSA events in which gay BSA leaders will be ready to model, counsel, and guide YOUR sons away from biblical beliefs.

    Is that what you want? Hmm?

    Time to LEAVE!

  9. So you seem to be saying that men should be banned from the Catholic priesthood, right? Actually Dominic the problem is with repressed and unhealthy sexuality, not healthy sexuality. As Freud more or less said, what you resist, persists.

    In my entire life, and out of the hundreds and hundreds of gay men I have known well enough to know THIS, i have met exactly one gay man who had an interest in underage boys. And by underage I mean post puberty, but under the age of consent.

    One of the more tragic reasons that the problem continues is the false and slanderous belief that gay men are danger to boys and young men because our sexual appetites are uncontrollable. Funny about that! They say the same thing about black men. That gives the actual molesters, and allegedly heterosexual men with deep-seated confusions about their sexuality, a great cover to continue their activities. And the problems in the Roman Catholic Church.

  10. No haters, Ted.

    (Except for the always-seething Gay Activist community, of course. But you’re not one of THEM, are you?)

  11. Dominic, you are deeply misinformed about gay people. Aside from the issue of the object of our affections, there really isn’t much of a difference between a gay man straight men, and Gay women and straight women.

    Why wouldn’t a boy want to join the Boy Scouts? Is it because we’re really not quite human? Is it because we are so unmasculine? What is it, exactly!

    As for gay man guiding “impressionable young boys”, you seem to be implying that he would try to turn those boys gay. Every gay person alive today was most likely raised by heterosexual parents in a hetero-normative environment, with strong messages about how bad it is to be gay. It didn’t make any of us straight.

    This year fear and revulsion are just not reality based. That’s not how this works. It’s not how any of this works

  12. It was an unofficial policy during that time. Something practiced but not stated publicly. By 1991 they released an official position statement to that effect.

    In my days as a scout in the 1980’s I remember several scouts and leaders who were “in the closet” (who came out years later). But then again, several troops (and their councils) in the New York Metropolitan area were in defiance of such policies back then.

  13. I was a “cub” scout who found I’d rather use my free time to play sports on teams, so I left before becoming a Boy Scout. Basically, I liked baseball and football far more.

    If the Scouts want to make this change, that’s their business. What I objected to in the past was municipalities discriminating against them due to their position against gay scouts. But all of that is ancient history now.

    Christians will pull out of the Scouts now….that’s easy enough to predict. The big picture is that we’re fast becoming two nations within a nation, two nations that hate each other at least as much as northerners and southerners did on the eve of the Civil War.

    That’s a real cause for concern. On both side of the cultural divide, we’re playing with matches. And by nationalizing every cultural issue coming down the pike, the Supreme Court is making a bad situation worse.

    These are separate issues from the Scout issue, but they’re the bigger picture.

  14. Doc,

    “gay BSA leaders will be ready to model, counsel, and guide YOUR sons away from biblical beliefs.”

    1. Enforcing Biblical beliefs about Hell on children is a form of abuse.

    2. Gays have always been in the Boy Scouts. Even when biblical stuff was getting taught.

    3. Gay men are the largest portion of the Priesthood. If you are afraid of gays teaching your kids bible stuff at camp where proper behavior is supervised – consider why that is so different from sending your kids to Sunday School at your local indoctrination center (church) where no such supervision exists.

  15. We withdrew our son from cub scouts because of the ban on gay scouts/leaders. We didn’t want him associated with institutionalized bigotry and ignorance.

  16. Actually, jack, you misread the rule change. Local units will be able to choose which way they go. anti gay, or it doesn’t matter.

    SOME Christians will pull out– those who prefer their prejudicial stereotypes, those who prefer the Antigay messages to the judge not messages.

    If we are a nation divided, it will be because of the single minded attempt at division that Antigay people have been offering ever since Anita Bryant first raised her well coiffed reptilian shout above a Florida swamp 37 years ago. It will be between the anti gay people who insist on gay being the worst sin ever, and the larger majority who have realized it doesn’t matter.

    As I have often said, I could care less what Christians believe. If we divide into two nations that hate each other, it will be because cantinas hate gay people more than they love their country. The segregationists were saying this 50 years ago. It wasn’t true then and it isn’t true now.

  17. @Jack,

    “we’re fast becoming two nations that hate each other”

    Christian bigots are being forced to answer for their bigoted hatred
    as well as their source material. Gods are bigoted nonsense and clerics are exposed for what they are; nasty bullies in fancy hats.

    We are fast becoming a more decent country which has no public use for religion. This doesn’t threaten you, nor your beliefs nor your magic pixies.

    You are being deprived of nothing by non-believers. How dare you equate that to ‘hate’?
    Christians seek to deprive everyone else – THAT is the hate. And that is the irony of your whining.

    You have no good answers for why your pixie dust theories are failures.

    The freedom of others is not your prison.

    Stop complaining.
    Even if everyone else leaves the bowling alley
    you are still free to bowl by yourself.

  18. Tobias,

    “didn’t want him associated with …bigotry and ignorance.”

    I decided I was against religion for the same reason.
    “They are swine” – JESUS
    “They are dogs” – JESUS
    “Seek only the Israelites”- JESUS
    “Do not make friends with Jews or Christians” – ALLAH
    “Avoid them” – (Romans 16:16)

    Religion is a free gift of personal ‘Salvation’ in return for being bigoted and murderous.

    “Execute them in front of me” – JESUS (Luke 19:27)
    From the most disgusting parable ever told.

  19. Sorry, anti gays, not cantinas. I may have to give up commenting via my iPad. It does this sort of thing a lot.

  20. I have no belief that pedophiles are gay men. The child sexual attraction is a class all its own. I know my thought that openly gay men should be excluded from Scout leadership revolts you, but, I see it as a situation that will cause unnecessary problems amongst parents and children alike. I also believe that the demand by gays to join the scouts is more a political move than an actual need of opening of its doors to a multitude of candidates.

  21. The “Christians” had no business turning the Scouts into their little sectarian playground to begin with. The entire point of the organization was to be an alternative to such church youth groups. Something that answered to the call of citizenship, regardless of their faith. The discriminatory policy was an attack on the principles of the organization and a black eye publicity-wise.

    If the nation is divided its because Christians are forgetting ideas like “live and let live” and that religious freedom does not equal license to persecute others. Once they learn the lesson that this form of discrimination is no longer tolerated under the color of law, they will move on….to the next thing they are prejudiced against. Haters gotta hate.

    The Supreme Court is doing what it is supposed to do. Uphold the principles of the Constitution in light of conflicts with given laws. Civil liberties is not a “cultural issue” when they are being denied.

  22. “I see it as a situation that will cause unnecessary problems amongst parents and children alike.”

    You will in the horrific situation of dealing with gay people in public as human beings. Your prejudices will lose social sanction. Oh you poor baby. /sarcasm.

    ” I also believe that the demand by gays to join the scouts is more a political move than an actual need of opening of its doors to a multitude of candidates.”

    A belief not supported by facts. The ban on gay scouts and adults has damaged the nature and reputation of the organization. Its also a demand by many scout leaders, former scouts and even higher ups in the organization who are not gay. Those who feel discrimination diminishes their efforts in the organization.

  23. And that is your choice, Tobias. I don’t view the Scouts as an example of institutionalized bigotry at all. Girls cannot join…they have the Girl Scouts. What was the original outlook for setting up the Scouts a Century ago? I doubt the inclusion of homosexuals was even talked about or remotely pondered. Changing the rules now, of course, will raise the question of what the Scouts are. Perhaps its time to close the door and reopen exclusive groups that can agree on new visions of “scouting”.

  24. Out of context these verses are incendiary, which I’m sure is why you exclusively repeat them. It narrows religious ideology to a few well chosen negatives.
    This does not assist atheism at all. Religion is bigoted against sin and all works of evil. That is a true statement and one that no one need be embarrassed about.

  25. Then, Larry, I want to see the great number of gays that join the Scouts within the next year, and also the number of gays that actually get married.

  26. The funny thing is given the changes in the BSA policy, there has not been the massive exodus to join its sectarian bizzaro knock-off, Trail Life.

    It seems massive numbers of scouts and parents simply accept the changes. Many seem to welcome them (like those of the Greater New York Council).

  27. “Out of context these verses are incendiary”

    So its OK for Christians to do so to justify their animosities to others, but annoying when the favor is returned. Hypocrisy and religion are two bedfellows that just can’t keep away from each other.

    Girl Scouts has been inclusive of gays for quite some time. Any perceived loss of support has been offset by greater levels of funding by the general public.

    ” I doubt the inclusion of homosexuals was even talked about or remotely pondered. ”

    Another doubt not supported by facts. The founder of Scouting, Lord Baden Powell was gay. In fact the organization was intentionally non-sectarian in nature. Religious animosities were the reason for its founding in the first place. Lord Baden-Powell wanted to inspire notions of citizenship to transcend boundaries of sectarian prejudices (and prepare British boys for future wars in rough terrain after the military was pasted by armed farmers in the Boer War)

  28. OK show of hands, how many people here who support the ban on gays in the Boy Scouts were actually scouts?

    How many are Eagle Scouts?

  29. So likewise, it’s okay for Christians to withdraw their sons from the Boy Scouts, precisely because the ban you mentioned, has been effectively lifted.

    BSA Leaders are role models, examples and guides of what’s right and what’s wrong, for the younger boys.

    So if Christian parents want their sons to learn that “homosexual behavior is morally wrong and inappropriate”, it doesn’t make any sense for them to send their sons to BSA chapters or events where some of the leaders are automatically going to serve as examples and role models of “homosexual behavior is morally right and appropriate”.

    It’s time for Christians to send their kids to Christian organizations that believe, guide, and model to kids what the parents believe.

    We all are grateful for the historic benefits the BSA has bestowed on countless boys. But now it’s time to LEAVE!! Christians, get your beloved boys outta that BSA QUICKSAND before the sinking starts!!

  30. I’m glad to hear that you don’t think were pedophiles. At least you cleared that one up. But then you go on to say that it will cause unnecessary problems, without specifying what those problems might possibly be.

    But then you go right off the rails again. Gay people wanting to be a part of Scouting must be a political move. It couldn’t possibly be a human, or anything else that would make us a part of the human family, it’s not an enemy to it or an alien of it. Because, you know, gay people are just awful and icky– And privately, not really one of us.

    So we’re back where we started.

    Someday, perhaps we’ll see an actual justification for treating gay people differently than anyone else, besides, that is, the Big Three:

    I don’t like it, my God doesn’t like it, or anything about sex scares the hell out of me.

  31. There have been some 390,000 marriages for gay people in the U.S. in the past 10 years, according to the statistics that I have seen. Maybe there are better ones, I don’t know.

    Is that enough for you, or do you need something else to prove our worthiness as human beings?

  32. At Dominic: so Christians pull there condemnations of gay people completely out of context, but that’s OK. Romans is a condemnation of idolatry, not a dondemnation of homosexuality. That’s very clear. Leviticus is addressed to the priesthood of ancient Israel, says nothing about female homosexuality ( or male homosexuality) and yet it is used to condemn gay people in general. Most scholars agree that Jude refers to going after angelic flesh, but it is twisted to be a combination of gay people.

    And you complain about Max?

  33. Yup doc! As General William WestMoreland famously said, we have to destroy that village in order to save it.

    Oh, I’m sorry. You meant that only The True Christians have to leave the Boy Scouts. The rest of the not true Christians can be damned to hell.

    that’s fine with you

  34. Get ready for the mass exodus of Christian churches.

  35. To Ben… Don’t think that I believe Gays are second class citizens, or unworthy of equality in life. It is the situations they want equality with and the tactics they use that are offensive. To me, on both secular and religious grounds I find no rationale for their inclusion in the historical definition of marriage….I just can’t justify it personally. Their insistence on pressuring every societal group, from bakeries to Boy Scouts, is offensive and really unnecessary with the plethora of organizations and services already available to the gay community. Religion needn’t be the major target of gay attacks, either, for it is an all too well known arbiter of morality….and in the case of the Catholic Church, a Faith that cannot change dogmatic laws if it wanted to.
    The lifestyles are different, but our humanity is the same.

  36. P E D E R A S T Y

    is as entrenched in gay history as is promiscuity. This is about unfettered access to young boys by adult “mentors.”

    Why would anyone try to deny that?

  37. Oh Mud Pie Man,

    Your attempts at painting Jesus as mean is proof of your mentally ill faculties being far too displayed than they should be.

    But not surprising for a soulless walking dust pile.

    Just take your meds, hide in your parent’s basement room and rest.

  38. “Leviticus is addressed to the priesthood of ancient Israel”

    I see. So if the sexual prohibitions of Leviticus 20 were only for the priests of ancient Israel, why does the chapter go on to say that it was for these practices that God judged and rejected the Canaanite nations before Israel?

  39. Part 1:1000 characters is not going to cover this.

    “It is the situations they want equality with and the tactics they use that are offensive.”

    Do you people ever think about what you’re saying? Are you really saying there are two kinds of equality, the kind white, heterosexual, Christians get, and the kind they decide that is available to gay people?

    Newsflash: my life, love, family, children, faith, freedom, citizenship, participation in society, and rights are every bit as important as yours. Conservative Christian bigots really don’t believe it, and don’t like it one bit.

    What tactics are you referring to? Ours is 50-year-old movement– actually, far older– that has organized, raised money, talked to people, contacted our legislators, approached the courts for our constitutional redress of grievances,
    and use the democratic process according to the rule of law. You’re losing too that.

    And you also don’t like THAT one bit. It disturbs you wholly imaginary…

  40. Superiority. (This commenting system is of the devil!)

    Part 2: oh! You’re referring to the handful of cake martyrs, privileged county clerks, and a few others who don’t think that the laws that govern all of us apply to them, and they shouldn’t have to associate with people that ther religion tells them to despise.

    I’m certain you’re not referring to the 50 years of political campaigns conducted by your fellow religionists, and cadres of professional haters and grifters, wherein we are labeled as diseased perverts, mentally ill, child molesters, threats to everything good and holy, destroyers of civilization, nazis, jihadists, haters of God, faith and freedom, whose sin is so horrible that God will punish millions of innocent people to express his disapproval.

    I’m sure those tactics meet with your total approval, don’t they?

    We are pressuring every societal group? Poor baby! And how exactly are we bullying all these people, our 2% of the population?

  41. So Shawnie, do you avoid mixing dairy and meat in your home? That is in Leviticus as well.

    What is the current excuse you guys use to ignore some parts of Levitics and accept others? 🙂

    So it does not apply for gentiles when it concerns any other practice which may be inconvenient to their lifestyle but applies when trying to justify acting badly to others. OK. Your religion, you can make up whatever rules will serve your purposes. No need for being rational or consistent when applying them. That much is already understood.

    “why does the chapter go on to say that it was for these practices that God judged and rejected the Canaanite nations before Israel?”

    Do you really want to go into how the Bible justified genocide?

    Are you really so willing to accept that there are “biblically acceptable” reasons for wiping out an entire people?

  42. Those pederast priests won’t have such easy access when churches decide to drop their support of the Boy Scouts. They will lose a useful playground for them.

  43. Part 3: how do we demand equality, and how dare society at large grant it, without asking your permission? As one of the Other Three Stooges said, “the noive!”

    Here’s another newsflash for you: we winning because the rest of society can see you people for who you are. 60% to 80% of our society supports gay people, depending on the issues. 60% for marriage, 80% for employment nondiscrimination. For that, we thank you! YOU!!!!

    Your comments about religion, especially being an arbiter of morality, are as offensive as they are detached from reality. You and your fellow Dominionists aren’t the only Christians and don’t represent all religion. You attack us for centuries, and then complain when we fight back, or when other people of faith defend us.

    You poor, deluded bullies! No one is interested in changing your dogma or your church.

    But keep up your hate and despite. It only helps us. Let the butthurt flow through you.

    I think I’ll go kiss my husband good morning!

  44. PS:

    Of course you believe we are second-class citizens! You also believe we are second-class human beings. And every comment you and your fellow travelers make underlines your basic reality when it comes to us.

    You know what’s offensive to me, and every person who doesn’t think that prejudice disguised as religious beliefs is a good thing? Your holy unwarranted and unwavering belief in your otherwise completely imaginary superiority as a heterosexual, a moral person, a person of faith, a Christian, and a human being.

    We are winning, and you really hate that. Good! Good! I rejoice in your meeting and your wailing, your lamentations and your gnashing of teeth!!!!

    Is that biblical enough for you!

  45. Ben, even when the subject is a gay issue, I tend to direct my thoughts to broader issues of culture as well. I tend to see gay issues as just one of many cultural issues on which the American people are divided into two very separate camps.

    And as I said in my post above, nationalizing contentious cultural issues, creating one-size-fits-all solutions, as the Supreme Court has been doing for decades, does not defuse these issues, but heats them up.

    The good news is that the Founders and Framers designed a federalist system which allows states and regions to reflect the cultural diversity of the nation. The bad news is that the Supreme Court keeps rendering judgments that seek to create a monoculture when such a thing doesn’t exist on its own.

  46. Wrong, Larry. The Scouts were never a “sectarian playground,” but reflected the cultural consensus, secular and religious, of the time in which they were founded. What you’re doing is superimposing 2015 on a very different era.

  47. Max, try reading posts before answering them. Then maybe your answers will read more like rational responses than flaky flights to nowhere.

  48. And jack, what Antigay people do is is superimpose 500BC to 300AD on a very different era.

    That doesn’t stop them, does it!

  49. Have you already forgotten what I explained to you about Acts 15, back in that “rigorous debate” about homosexuality and the scriptures that you slinked away from?

    I wasn’t asking you, anyway, I was asking Ben. You’ve already demonstrated your helplessness on this subject.

  50. “You know what’s offensive to me…? Your holy unwarranted and unwavering belief in your otherwise completely imaginary superiority as a heterosexual, a moral person, a person of faith, a Christian, and a human being.”

    Well, so much for “not caring” about others’ beliefs…not to mention “slandering and reviling.”

  51. I’m sure you can’ to ee it in Dominic’s posting. But then, I’m sure you can’t see that in yourself, Shawnie. It doesn’t mean it’s not there. I see it every time you ignore BQRQ’s rantings, or Gregs lies, or any of it. You are far too intelligent not to notice.

    I see it in your postings postings occasionally, though I think you are adept at covering up, being more intelligent. And the postings of Dominic, and of so many of these others, just reeks of it. “The situations they want equality in….” For example.

    I notice you didn’t really refute what I had to say, but just went all ad hominem. No problem for me.

    I long ago realized that I am never going to reach people either poisoned by hate or poisoned by their wholly imaginary superiority or poisoned by the kind of toxic religious belief that frequently gives cover to them both. As I have said before, I don’t write for you.

    I notice Dominic also didn’t answer. That also didn’t surprise me.

  52. Well, you see it the way you see it. Im sure that you must feel that loving v. Virginia or Brown v. BOE were therefore wrongly decided. I’m not going to be a states rights person except where the states ought to have authority. The portability of my marriage isn’t one of those areas.

    Had SCOTUS ruled that states didn’t have to allow gay marriage, but did have to accept marriages from other states, I wouldn’t have liked it, but it would have been acceptable. But what is not acceptable is that my marriage ceases to exist as I cross state lines. That violates my rights as an American citizen.

  53. “I notice you didn’t really refute what I had to say, but just went all ad hominem.”

    Ben, what did your screed amount to except ad hom and strawmen? Trying to tell us what we really think and attacking THAT instead of sticking to the merits. I have rarely ever encountered a left-leaner who could debate any other way.

    Most of us (I wish I could say all, but no one can speak for all) don’t hate you. Most of us pity you much, just like the Justice who gave you your demands out of thin air and extremely fuzzy constitutional reasoning because he didn’t want you to be “cold and lonely,” but of course that in and of itself does not make a gay union the actual equal of a heterosexual and potentially procreative union or give society any significant reason to regulate it.

    You remind me of a certain feminist blogger who once wrote that part of her pleasure in unmarried sex was the idea that she was “pissing off Christians.” All I could think was, how sad.

  54. “Most of us pity you much.”

    “of course that in and of itself does not make a gay union the actual equal of a heterosexual and potentially procreative union.”

    And thank you do proving my point about your wholly imaginary superiority far better than I could.

    This is why I rarely bother to respond to you. Despite your obvious intelligence and scholarship, you will simply not believe that you truly see us as your moral and human inferiors.

    Well, I’m done with this exchange. Maybe there will be another time when I think it worthwhile to respond.

  55. None of us are superior, Ben … outside of the work of Jesus Christ we would all be equally lost. But compassion for each others’ weaknesses is simply part of our lives. We ALL feel compassion for each other for the various sins we become ensnared in, and we help each other combat them in various ways such as mutual admonishment (which we have ALL received), mutual confession, assisting each other in avoiding occasions of temptation, and so forth. We are no less compassionate toward you, but apart from Jesus we are unable to help you the way we help each other.

    Sorry you’re done…I asked a question of you earlier that I never received an answer to.

  56. How would you know? You never even made it through its beginning

    The official ban on gays in the BSA dates back to the lofty date of 1991.

    Scouting was founded deliberately to be an alternative to the various religious based youth programs. Non-sectarian. Religious elements were always more of an add on in the background. Its telling that the religious awards in Scouting are entirely optional, unlike Citizenship ones which are required for Eagle Scouts.

    They became a sectarian playground once churches like the LDS started to make demands such as the 1991 policy. Somewhat ironic considering Scouting’s founder was gay. You are confusing nostalgia and propaganda for facts.

    The only ones foolish enough to believe the US ever had “a cultural consensus” are ones who want to deny anyone other than rural WASP males are worthy of consideration in this nation.

  57. Jack, that would have been a great argument before April 1865.

    Founders/Framer’s intent is of no consequence when the subject is individual liberties in the modern day. They believed women had no legal rights and people could be owned as chattel property. Their opinions needed a little revision.

    After the Civil War, States lost the privilege of being the last word on civil liberties within their borders with the 14th Amendment. Meaning the Supreme Court becomes the last word on whether laws guarantee or can abridge the rights of citizens. We still have prejudice, but at least it is much much harder to give it color of law than it used to.

  58. Here is your answer.

    Sexual immorality means whatever you want it to mean, just like “to’evah” applies to sex but not to diet. Just like “man bed” and “soft/effeminate” means “abusers of themselves with mankind” and means whatever you want it to, including homosexuality. Funny how that particular condemnation is also used to condemn lesbians by modern so called Christians.

    It’s a loophole you could drive a very large cathedral through.

    now I’m done.

  59. I didn’t ask you to define sexual immorality. I asked if Leviticus is only addressed to the Levite priesthood, why did Leviticus 20 state that it was for all the specific practices described therein (including man-bedding) that God rejected the Canaanite nations?

    Obviously there is a minimum standard of sexual purity that God always expected even of Gentiles. And that gets into the Noahide laws…

    Oh well, another time I guess.

  60. Ben, had the Court ruled that way — not creating a national right to gay marriage but ruling that states that didn’t have gay marriage had to accept gay marriages from other states — it would have been an iffy argument, but one that honest people could plausibly defend on constitutional grounds. But to create a national right based on the equal protection clause was and is problematic because it’s not the court’s job to redefine words or language, but that of legislatures, and for gay unions to be recognized as marriages and thus covered by the equal protection clause, you first have to redefine marriage to include gay unions. I did not support gay marriage, but even if I did, I would have preferred that it be done the constitutional way — ie through legislation and/or constitutional amendment.

    The problem with cutting constitutional corners is that if one side does it, so can the other. That’s a poor recipe for a stable democracy.

  61. Larry, nobody is saying we have to agree with a single political or social opinion of the Founders and Framers. The issue here is not substance, but process. And if we are serious about the durability of democracy, we all had better honor process as much as we do substance. What matters is not just where we arrive, but how we get there.

  62. Ben, I’m not sure I agree…..because in 500 BC, most societies saw nothing wrong with homosexuality. Societal views on homosexuality are not a function of time, but of ideas on religion and sexuality…..and on those two issues, there is truly no new idea under the sun………

    Except……gay marriage. That is a genuinely new idea.

  63. Larry, I have no idea what you’re talking about. I was the one who disputed your notion that the Scouts were a “sectarian” group and now you seem to be making an argument that backs away from your prior one while supporting mine.

    Go figure….

  64. sorry. I thought you had asked about Acts 15.

    So many biblical books. so many translations. So many interpretations. so little time.

    I’m still done.

  65. Ben, as far as states rights go, you’d be interested to know that when it comes to the everyday, mundane business of courts, state and federal and SCOTUS, the vast majority of the time, judges, be they liberal or conservative or something else, honor states’ rights.

    That’s the default position of the majority of judges on any court.

    Historically, though, judges fail to honor states’ rights when two things happen (1) a huge issue arrives and (2) they care deeply about the issue. A century ago, when states were passing liberal laws on minimum wages and maximum hours, it was the conservatives who were the judicial activists, knocking down the laws even though they were constitutional. Today, when states tend to pass conservative laws on big issues, it’s the liberals who are the activists, knocking down those laws even though they’re constitutional.

  66. Jack, don’t use State’s Rights or founders arguments when discussing civil liberties and state laws. They have been dead and buried for over a century and a half.

    In terms of process, we have had 214 years of Supreme Court judicial review as the final word as to whether laws are constitutionally valid. You are too late for that party too.

    If anything from the last 50 years has shown us is that once we take away the ability for various forms of bigotry to have color of law, they lose social cachet over time as well. You are complaining about something which appears to be working. Just not working in your interests per se.

  67. “Larry, I have no idea what you’re talking about.”

    Why am I not surprised. 🙂

  68. OK Shawnie, you don’t want to address my post. If you don’t want to deal with the Biblical encouragement for genocide, its best to keep Canaanites out of a discussion. 🙂

    I already understand that consistency and rationality have no place in interpreting scripture to a fundamentalist. It all comes down to “what can I use to excuse this action”.

    Which is why a “if the Bible says … , how do you do justify …?” argument is singularly pointless. It assumes a level of honesty, rationality and objectivity which does not exist for belief like yours.

  69. “Founders/Framer’s intent is of no consequence when the subject is individual liberties in the modern day.”

    The intent of the framers of the 14th amendment is certainly relevant.

    The SCOTUS recognized long ago that the 14th amendment was never intended to extend equal protection to women, hence the 20th amendment, and the ERA still floating around out there unratified. If it was not intended to apply to women, then neither was it intended to apply to LGBTs. Hence the issue should have been addressed by constitutional amendment if at all, not by activist judges making up nebulous rights to “privacy” here and “dignity” there in order to get desired results but never affixing them to any solid ground.

  70. Oops, Jack, that’s not new either. The Midrash had very interesting things to say about it.

  71. I addressed your post. Acts 15. We’ve discussed it already. I spoon-fed it to you since obviously you didn’t know what it said. What did I tell you about the Jerusalem Council, Larry?

    “If you don’t want to deal with the Biblical encouragement for genocide” I’ll be happy to discuss it after you display comprehension of what I have already explained to you about Acts 15. What did I tell you about the Jerusalem Council.

    The rest of your post is just more excuse-making for cowering away from “rigorous debate.” You needn’t have bothered with it.

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