The Mormon church, which to date has been the biggest sponsor of the Boy Scouts organization, recently decided to end ties with the organization due to the fact that the Boy Scouts is changing its name and policies for politically correct reasons.
While both partners have had their disagreements over the past couple of years, and the end of the relationship isn’t really a surprise to anyone involved, the implications are sure to be acutely felt by the Boy Scouts organization both now and in the future.
Problems began between the Boy Scouts and religious organizations back in 2013, when the Boy Scouts decided it would accept gay scouts. The move infuriated many Christian churches across the country, but real trouble began only in 2015 when the Boy Scouts decided it would also accept openly gay and bi-sexual individuals as scout leaders and employees.
At that time, Christian churches across the country began cutting ties with the Boy Scouts, opting to instead create their own alternative programs for youth that did not promote a liberal sexual agenda. At that time, the Mormon church considered its options and decided to stick with the Boy Scouts because the Boy Scouts assured the Mormon church that the church could choose its own Scout leaders for its youth members. A number of Catholic churches followed in the Mormon Church’s footsteps by sticking with the Scouts as long as the church could pick its own scout leaders.
However, things have only gone downhill since the 2015 uproar over gay scout leaders. In January 2017, the Boy Scouts organization announced that it would accept transgender scouts. The move was widely criticized by religious leaders who accurately noted that having biological boys and girls showering and camping together created genuine child protection issues that the Scouts organization was not taking into account. Even so, the move to change the organizations name to Scouts BSA so that the organization would feel more “inclusive” for girls was apparently the last straw for the Mormon Church. The religious organization has made it clear that it is cutting all ties with the Boy Scouts organization, and will instead focus on starting a new, similar program dedicated to helping children and teenagers learn life skills, build character and learn about their eternal identity. The new program will begin running in 2020.
The departure of the Mormon church from the Boy Scouts organization will deal the organization a blow that it will not soon recover from. The Mormon church has backed the Boy Scouts organization for more than one hundred years. What is more, nearly 20% of all Boy Scout members come from the Mormon church. The loss of so many members is sure to affect the organization’s finances; additionally, it may encourage other churches to also remove their members and start or join alternative programs.
Now that the Mormon Church is investing time, effort and finances in creating its own alternative organization, it seems highly unlikely that it will ever join forces with the Scouts again. This same point likely also holds true for other churches that have already opted to pull their children and young people form the scouts and start their own local programs.
Naturally, no organization is perfect; each one has its flaws that need to be addressed on an ongoing basis. Unfortunately, the Boy Scouts organization is changing for the worse by leaving its conservative roots in order to make itself politically correct. The BSA undoubtedly hopes to accrue new members by allowing children and youth who would not have been permitted to join in years past to do so now. However, the move has clearly backfired, as the Boy Scouts stands to lose hundreds of thousands of members in 2019 when the Mormon Church officially removes all its members from the Boy Scouts organization.
The Boy Scouts, or Scouts BSA as it would like to be known in the coming years, is in for a rough ride, and chances are that the organization in years to come will hardly resemble the traditional Boy Scouts organization that once stood for integrity and family values.
~ Liberty Planet