Advancing Religious Liberty
3/11/13 at 11:58 AM 4 Comments

Defending Scouts' Honor

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Do you remember the Pixar movie Up? Carl, a shy boy, meets Ellie, an outgoing, energetic girl. They share a passion for exploring and dream of one day moving their clubhouse (a decrepit, abandoned house in their neighborhood) to the edge of Paradise Falls. Eventually, Carl and Ellie fall in love, marry, and purchase their old clubhouse. They work hard to restore the house, making it into a beautiful home where they grow old together. One day, many years later, while going for a picnic where Carl plans to surprise Ellie with tickets to Paradise Falls, Ellie becomes ill and soon dies. Carl retreats into their little house.

Years pass, and the world around Carl changes—the paradise he had built with Ellie starts to fall. The beautiful neighborhood is bought by developers, who tear down house after house to build monstrous skyscrapers. But Carl refuses to sell, hanging on to the dream that one day he would move the house to the edge of Paradise Falls. The developers become more and more threatening to Carl, trying to bully him to sell his house, to give in to “progress.” Eventually, a court orders Carl to leave his house, deeming him to be a “public menace.”

We all applauded Carl’s stand against the developers who sought to tear down beauty and tradition and replace it with the garish facade of modernity. We knew that something more than just a house would be lost if Carl caved in to the developer’s demands. That house represented a dream of something great, something worthwhile, something noble.

So Carl flies the house away using helium balloons, only to discover that a young boy named Russell, who is member of the Wilderness Explorers (a fictional group similar to the Boy Scouts), was on the porch when the house took flight.

It appears that a real-life sequel to Up is taking place before our eyes. But it doesn’t involve Russell or his Wilderness Explorers. It involves the Boy Scouts of America and its 2.6 million members.

For over 100 years, the Boy Scouts have been training young men to “make ethical and moral choices over their lifetimes.” The Scouts’ moral principles are distilled from the Scout Oath, in which a Scout promises to “do my Duty to God” and to “keep myself physically strong, mentally awake, and morally straight.” Over 100 million boys have been involved in the Boy Scouts, and their influence on American history is unparalleled. The world listened as Scout Neil Armstrong uttered the words “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind” as his foot touched the lunar surface. Our last three U.S. Presidents were Scouts. And if you are reading this on a Windows PC, then you have a Scout—Bill Gates—to thank for making that possible.

For generations, the Scouts have represented the essence of what makes America great: our belief in God, our self-determination, our service to others, and a shared set of moral values. Among these values is the belief that open homosexuality is incompatible with being “morally straight.”

But just as Carl faced pressure to sell his house to make way for “progress,” so too are the Scouts facing calls to abandon its values and open its doors to membership by homosexuals under the banner of “progress.” The homosexual activists calling for such change say that the Scouts’ beliefs are outdated and backwards. Using the very bullying tactics that they so often rally against, these activists want the Scouts to bow at the altar of modernity and moral relativism. The activists cannot tolerate tradition or Biblically-based morality. Any group that stands in their way must be bull-dozed (just ask Chick-fil-A), even at the cost of the tens of thousands of boys who will lose the guidance and support that the Scouts offer.

Carl and Russell, by working together, were able to fulfill Carl’s last promise to Ellie. The “clubhouse”—that symbol of all that was good and noble in Carl and Ellie’s marriage—was nestled securely atop Paradise Falls.

We too must work with the Boy Scouts—as a house united—and let them know that they must not give in to the demands of these activists who seek to destroy that which is good and noble. Alliance Defending Freedom sent a letter to the members of the Boy Scouts National Board and to the leaders of over 300 Boy Scout councils to let them know that they have our support. But the Scouts need to hear from you: the former and current Scouts, parents of scouts, and everyone who believes that organizations like the Scouts have the right to operate according to their values. We have prepared a Petition to the Boy Scouts, and we ask you to sign it to make sure that your voice is heard. Click here to add your name.

This post originally appeared here.

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