Off My Honor!
By Hans Zeiger
who wishes I would quit writing about the Boy Scouts: sorry. I'm doing it again,
to the probable dismay of the apparently regular reader who recently sent the
shut up about the boy scouts. i was boy scout, you were a boy scout--big deal.
your column appears all over the internet and is presumably read by
hundreds if not thousands of people each week. there are more pressing, relavent,
and interesting topics you could write about than how great scouting is. it'd be
one thing if you only wrote the occational
column on scouting, but it seems to be all you can talk about.
it makes you look like a fool (and maybe you are.) and it makes your
beloved scouts look like a bunch of ideological zealot assholes. do yourself and
everyone else a favor and grow up and move on."
replied, thanking the emailer for his opinion and explaining the two reasons I
continue to revisit this issue. First, I'm too young and stupid to know much
about most issues, and any attempts to showcase my opinions on foreign policy,
the environment, Social Security, economic policy, taxes, John Kerry's Purple
Hearts, and other such complicated matters would be well beyond my credibility.
Maybe once I've learned a bit more, I can write on those things. For now, I
focus on what I know.
second, that thing I know is that the Boy Scouts - a symbol of what is good and
decent about American culture - are under vicious assault by forces of political
correctness. There may be "more pressing, relavent (sic), and interesting
topics" out there, but I'll leave those to other writers. As for me, I have
an honor to defend.
that's why I'm writing about the Boy Scouts of Norwalk, Connecticut who are
being told by some Norwalk officials that they may not be able to reserve part
of Shady Beach Park for a three-hour campfire and membership recruitment event
on October 24. After city parks committee members Kenneth Baker and Peter Wien
complained that the Boy Scouts discriminate against homosexuals and atheists,
Mayor Alex Knopp asked city attorneys for an opinion about the legal precedence
for denying access to local Scouts.
without the word of the attorneys, Norwalk Common Council President Bruce Kimmel
has pledged enmity against the Boy Scouts of America. Kimmel calls the Boy
Scouts commitment to traditional morality, "repugnant and
discriminatory," and adds, "I would vote against [the Scouts' park
reservation] as a matter of principle, period."
dating back to 1640, stands for the old colonial tradition, the forgotten roots
of which still sustain us today. The haunted houses built after the British and
Hessians burned the town in the Battle of the Rocks, the ancient cemeteries and
cobbled paths of the place are legends of generations who built the nation.
was with an eye to that mighty heritage, of which Norwalk is a part, that the
Boy Scouts of America was founded 94 years ago. So in this potential rejection
of the Scouts by the Norwalk Common Council, what seems a small park use permit
in a small town could actually be quite a large declaration of war on the
principles shared between the historic foundations of ordered liberty and the
Boy Scout Oath and Law.
Norwalk to deny the Boy Scouts' permit application to use Shady Beach Park would
be more than a routine rejection of paperwork. It would be an outright assault
on the moral underpinnings of the American character. It would be to
aggressively favor over the ideals of moral straightness and duty to God the
radical agenda of perverted activists who seek nothing less than the entire
conversion of this nation to what Alan Keyes has rightly called "selfish
in the U.S. Constitution would stop the City of Norwalk from doing whatsoever it
pleases with regard to any group that applies for a park use permit. The
question becomes one of principle. We should not ask that Norwalk take an
explicitly favorable attitude toward the Scouts, nor should we request city
opposition to homosexual or atheist groups who may also wish to utilize Shady
we cannot and will not - if we wish to remain free on account of our character -
tolerate continued attacks on the Boy Scouts of America. Now is the time to take
action, before the City of Norwalk moves to unjustly discriminate against the
Hans Zeiger is president of the Scout Honor Coalition, a Seattle Sentinel columnist, and a student at Hillsdale College. www.hanszeiger.com
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