No ‘witchhunt’: New Scout alternative will allow gay scouts, too, but emphasize chastity
LOUISVILLE, KY, July 12, 2013 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Boy Scout leaders who bolted the organization after it voted to allow homosexual boys to join have announced that the new group they are founding will also allow boys who consider themselves gay to join – but the new group will emphasize chastity and “principles and values that reflect a Christian worldview.”
John Stemberger, the founder of OnMyHonor.Net – one of the groups leading the formation of the new scouting group, has said, "There is not going to be any acting out, nor is there going to be a witch-hunt.”
"We wouldn't expect any flaunting, innuendo, gestures or speech," he added.
Adult leaders will be required to sign a statement affirming Christian beliefs.
But some warn the new guidelines are not distinct enough to prevent moral confusion among impressionable young scouts.
"I do not think it is wise for this new alternative to the Scouts to affirm that homosexual youths are allowed to join, even with the caveat that they won't be allowed to 'flaunt their sexuality,'” Peter LaBarbera, president of Americans for Truth About Homosexuality, told LifeSiteNews.com. “Being openly 'gay' in any youth organization – especially one committed to wholesome moral values – is essentially an act of activism. Identifying publicly with immoral and deviant sex (sin) and being 'tolerated' as such sends the message to other impressionable boys that practicing and identifying (proudly) with homosexual behavior is OK.”
A strong and undeniable desire exists for an alternative to the Boy Scouts of America, since the group liberalized its policy on admitting homosexuals – something it once fought all the way to the Supreme Court.
“We have heard directly from over 30,000 people that recommended a need for this organization,” said Rob Green, the interim executive director of the as-yet unnamed organization. He added that "nearly 50 leaders met on June 29 in Louisville, Ky., and agreed to start the new organization."
“Our vision is to be the premier national character development organization for young men which produces Godly and responsible husbands, fathers, and citizens,” Green said.
He added the group – which is being formed by OnMyHonor.Net, Faith Based Boys, Frontier Service Corps, and TrailHead USA among other groups – seeks “to guide generations of courageous young men to honor God, lead with integrity, serve others, and experience outdoor adventure.”
LaBarbera said he strongly supports Green and Stemberger's efforts to create a successor to the BSA but thinks it is vital the group finely tunes its policy before it launches, so it does not suffer the same fate as the group it is leaving.
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"I think a better approach would be to simply disallow open homosexuality and gender confusion (transgenderism) altogether, like the Boy Scouts used to,” LaBarbera told LifeSiteNews. “This would not preclude boys who struggle with their sexual identity from joining, but it would put out a clear stop sign to the type of incremental homosexual advocacy that ultimately undermined the Scouts."
The new, explicitly Christian youth organization will unveil its name, logo, and branding information at an upcoming leadership convention on September 6-7 in Nashville. Registration begins next Monday.
Leaders of the project say the new group will be ready to launch by New Year's Day.