Quin Monson, a professor at Brigham Young University, a former scout and father of a current Boy Scout, spoke to NPR radio recently about the Boy Scouts of America’s recent decision to lift the ban on gay scout leaders.
“The (Mormon) church took the Boy Scout program and decided its values and mission aligned closely enough with that of the church’s program for young men that they just wholesale adopted it,” Monson said. “Basically, if you are a young Mormon male, you join the Boy Scouts.”
Bu the new policy by the BSA doesn’t sit well with Monson even if he can’t articulate what exactly bothers him about it.
“The BSA statement allows for leaders who are openly gay and what that means in practice is, I don’t think, exactly clear. But I think that it very well could conflict with the church’s own policy which is, ‘You can identify as gay and be an active, faithful member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.’ The problem is acting on that same-sex attraction, so there’s a distinction between actions and orientation.”
Monson actually sounds despondent and chokes up when he explains that his son just doesn’t see the problem with allowing gay scout leaders. Isn’t that supposed to be a good thing? When children don’t embrace the biases and bigotry that’s come before them?
Manson explained how a chat with his son went regarding having openly gay scout leaders went something like this:
“He’s a pretty deep thinker, and a thoughtful kid, but his reaction was, ‘Well, I don’t see why it matters, dad. Why is this such a big deal?'” Monson explained.
“That’s the hard part about all of this is that it impacts a group of young men who don’t necessarily understand why,” Monson said, getting choked up.
You can listen below. The “emotional” moment comes at around the 3:20 mark.