Re: Girls in BSA
Steve M. Burinsky (smb@AFTERLIFE.NCSC.MIL)
Sun, 27 Aug 1995 15:37:40 -0400
> From: Peter Farnham <pfarnham@ASBMB.FASEB.ORG>
> "LOS ANGELES--An 11-year old girl sued the Boy Scouts of America
> From: "Norman J. MacLeod" <gaelwolf@MARLIN.SSNET.COM>
> There are girls - one of whom is apprently VERY determined - who
> wish to join the BSA.
Right off the bat, let's dismiss this notion that it's the 11-year-old
girl in question who is motivating this law suit. It's her litigious
parents who are the cause of this action. They are apparently fighting
for their child's supposed "right" to belong to a private organization.
Also, let's not underestimate the potential motivations for this suit.
Why aren't these parents suing the GSUSA to start a troop in their
area? Why aren't they just starting a Girl Scout Troop? Why is it the
BSA's fault that there isn't a program for their daughter? It seems
apparent to me that the BSA is the target here, not the well-being of
their daughter. This whole suit is as silly as suing your neighbor for
not inviting you to his last picnic just because he doesn't like you.
Let's not confuse the two issues here. First is the BSA's (or anyone's
right) to choose whom they wish to associate with. That is, what is
the basis of this law suit in the first place? If the courts can
compel the BSA to admit girls to the Boy Scouts (or is that the "Child
Scouts of America"?), then we are only a step away from the courts
compelling the Catholic Church to admit women priests or compelling
a non-smoking home-owner to lease that room-for-rent to a smoker.
The BSA has already made it quite clear that it is willing to forfeit
funding from any source which asks it to contradict its basic tenets.
The government has no role to play here.
The second is the issue of whether or not the BSA should have a co-ed
program for Cub Scouts or Boy Scouts. I welcome that debate amongst
those interested and involved in the Boy Scouts of America, not those
who are trying to tear it down for what they perceive to be some
over-riding noble purpose.
If a choice is to be made about the admission of girls to the BSA's
programs, it should be made by the BSA, not by the courts. After all,
this is still America.
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City