Boy Scouts’ Exclusion of Atheists
The Boy Scouts of America continues to follow right-wing policies
The Boy Scouts despite dismantling barriers to its membership still prohibits non-religious and atheists to join[/tweetit] its ranks. The organization followed a religious right image even a few years before with its regressive and unfair policies against gays. It has now repealed its prohibition which goes against gay boys and also their families. The Boy Scouts now accept transgender boys and also invites girls to join, much to the chagrin of Girl Scouts of America.
Boy Scouts’ Exclusion of Atheists[/tweetthis]
Compared to Boy Scouts, the Girl Scouts dropped its requirements quite a long back. Although it dropped the need to believe in God, it announced that its members have no need to compulsorily recite religious lines from the oath to join.
Secular organizations have consistently protested against the support the Scouts receive from the government. The government provides support even with the full knowledge of the organization being rigidly biased against atheists. The Human Rights Campaign, known for its courting of religious groups, did not join protests related to the ban by Boy Scouts of America on atheists.
The end-point is atheists and non-religious boys, along with their families, are unwelcome in the Boy Scouts. This attitude is not only discriminatory, it is also a regressive one. This becomes the more prevalent when 38 percent of millennials identify themselves as religious. This differentiation, in fact, is written into the Boy Scout's code itself. The group's official position explicitly states, "No member can grow into the best kind of citizen without recognizing his obligation to God." This position automatically turns secular boys into second-class citizens and pariahs. It also defames non-belief. This bias is exclusive to the Boy Scouts. The problem becomes more acute when it occurs in a secular country like the United States which welcomes citizens of all religions and also of no religion. The BSA has a congressional charter which identifies it as a fraternal group and not a religious one. The U.S. President serves as an honorary chief. These are the reasons religious bigotry must go.
Scouts allow openly gay boys but still ban gay adults. Still ban openly atheist people too. It's all against God's law. Freedom of Religion!
— Kevin Farley (@KFarleyDVT) May 23, 2013
This bigotry is entwined with the history of the group. The BSA has officially shunned non-religious boys, even in high-profile cases. Even 10-year-old boys were expelled for not repeating the word 'God' as part of its oath. If a member does not prove his allegiance to God, he gets expelled.