The Boy Scouts of America have had a well-deserved bad reputation of being generally reactionary in their attitudes and in particular hostile towards the LGBT community. They have tried to redeem themselves by removing most of the restrictions and now have even announced that they will allow girls to enroll and as part of that move they have announced that they will change their name to Scouts BSA effective February 2019.
This has of course upset some groups who liked the Boy Scouts just the way they were and the Mormon church has announced that they will no longer work with the organization. It turns out that Mormons form about 20%, of the membership, much greater than their representation in the general public, and this is because every Mormon boy was automatically enrolled as a scout.
Over the last century, close to 20% of the 2.3 million Boy Scouts in the US have been Mormon boys, which made the church the Boy Scouts’ largest partner.
The church’s decision follows a marked shift towards inclusivity in recent years by the Boy Scouts.
In 2015, the Mormon Church said it was “deeply troubled” by the Boy Scout’s decision to revoke the ban on openly gay adult scout leaders.
The Boy Scouts had announced they would accept gay scouts two years prior.
The Mormon Church is against same-sex marriage and there are no openly gay men or women in leadership positions within the church.
It will be interesting to see how long the Mormon church can hold out against the winds of change on issues of gender and sexuality.