LDS leave BSA today – in accordance with a decision announced more than two years ago, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints officially terminates its century-old relationship with the “Scouts BSA,” formerly the Boy Scouts of America. For once, the Salt Lake City corporation is obeying biblical commandments, even if later than they should have. (Jesus told the disciples He sent out to preach one time that if they and their message were rejected by people, they should depart peacefully and ” as you go out of that house or that city, shake the dust off your feet.”
As I have mostly cut my ties with the Boy Scouts of America and Scouting, I was unaware of some major problems which have developed and are hastening the final collapse of this once-fine institution. I knew some, but not much of it.
Indeed, my family (two Eagle scouts and several long-time Scouters) have already voted with our feet in opposition to the last decade or so of incredibly stupid mistakes and the abandonment of Scouting principles, ideals, and moral positions. So this should not come as a surprise. The actual severing of ties of what was once 350,000 LDS youth and 70,000 or more LDS Scouters (adult leaders) is still a severe shock, and may mean the virtual Extinguishment of a once noble and fine organization. An organization that impacted the lives of millions and millions of men in very good ways.
This recent article in DC Dirty Laundry mentions the latest problems:
- BSA is desperately short of operating funds and capital.
- One major problem is the millions of dollars paid out in legal defense costs and settlements of child abuse claims – mostly homosexual pedophile incidents.
- They have in part addressed this by mortgaging the 144,000-acre Philmont Ranch in New Mexico to borrow $400+ million from Chase-Morgan.
- On 1 January 2020, 400,000 LDS scouts (10% of total Scouts) and a very large number of Scouters (leaders) will leave the BSA as the Salt Lake General Authorities establishes its own “scouting” program.
- There seems to be no way that the BSA will be able to redeem the collateral of Philmont, and it will almost certainly pass into other hands.
- Despite these things, the bsA continues to gallop down the path of what it once taught was immorality and abuse.
The BSA is not just accepting but embracing homosexuality, tolerating pedophilia, and changing to a ever-more “progressive” worldview, admitting women and girls at all levels, and advocating more and more a one-world, government-is-god, point of view.
But it more than just moral issues and supposed discrimination – which prompt the jettisoning of the baby with the bathwater. Scouting is increasingly opposed to liberty, to personal responsibility, to freedom and many things associated with those fundamentals. Freedoms of speech, of keeping and bearing arms, of association, and of religion have grown less and less respected in the eyes of the organization.
One of Scouting’s problems has always been its nearly-subservient position towards government at nearly all levels, from local towns and counties (Citizenship in the Community) through Citizenship in the Nation to “Citizenship in the World.” Basic education and skills regarding how governments functioned and how citizens could best deal with government and at least attempt to keep government clean and focused have been replaced by nearly pure propaganda and a constant drumbeat of obedience and love – even worship – of government.
And despite its acceptance and endorsement of government and what was seen by many to be a high level of militarization, the BSA provided many benefits for young boys and men who would mature into lovers of liberty. For them, the ideals of Scouting were directly connected to liberty and freedom in every aspect of life.
And yes, there were abusers and scandals in which adult (and older youth) leaders mistreated (sexually and otherwise) their younger charges and comrades. These harmed some, but not all packs and troops suffered these things, and most Scouts never encountered such nasty matters. Today, that seems to have changed for the worst.
The Scouting movement veered (like the Girl Scouts USA) more and more away from practical life skills to activism and “progressive” objectives. As well as becoming “happy hunting grounds” for perverts and predators of all stripes. As Scouting abandoned more and more skill training and adventure experiences for political activism, and the risk of pedophiles and sadists and pandering predators grew, Scouting lost the trust and interest of many parents and their children. The LDS are far from the only ones to abandon the now rapidly-sinking ship.
The new LDS programs, officially starting up tomorrow on New Year’s Day 2020, will apparently little resemble the BSA and traditional Scouting, unlike the many competing replacement programs and organizations like Trail Life USA, now with 30,000 young men. Another traditional feature of American life is rapidly disappearing. And with it, some of its best achievements, including the Philmont Ranch preserve and hundreds of Boy Scout camp locations across the Fifty States.
At the same time, it is good indeed to see even organizations like the LDS stand up for their own principles, and for hundreds of thousands of young men (and their parents) secede from those things which have been corrupted beyond redemption.
We need more of that secession, de jure and de facto, from other corrupt institutions. Not just civic and youth like the Scouts, but religious and benevolent and cooperative entities of every sort.