NOW Can We Kick The Boy Scouts To The Curb?

For years now, both City Hall and the larger waking citizenry have been pondering a thorny matter of cognitive dissonance: In a city that tries to prize, above all else, brotherly love and sisterly affection, how can we be giving free rent to an organization that has hate built right into its charter? It only further complicates matters that the organization is the Boy Scouts Of America. One idea intended to rectify the situation somewhat — on the basis that here was a group with homophobic policies that the City itself would never endorse — was to try and evict the Scouts. And those of you that followed this story for a few years know that it did not go well. And in fact, the Boy Scouts only just got over gloating about it.

But it didn’t last long; it couldn’t. Late yesterday, news broke both nationwide and local that the Boy Scouts have been, ‘lo these years, literally lousy with pedophiles. This, added to the homophobia thing, boils the whole situation over in such way that the Boy Scouts are now just another fading American institution that has committed suicide by hypocrisy. And that institution doesn’t even want to know the questions brought up by the combination of both homophobia and, sickly, conversely, rampant pedophilia: Are the Boy Scouts homophobic because they believe gay kids would only tempt the scout masters? Or is this just a culture of abuse through and through, where the hate is just part of a cycle of evil things that all sort of complement in each other?

Today, representatives from the Boy Scouts are all over the media, pitching the company line: That it’s good that they did this report, and that they released it, and that they’ve also instituted new policies (including rigorous background checks) on anyone who works with kids. Some of that, at least, is to their credit. On the other hand, these are also merely the lessons of Sandusky. The Boy Scouts knew that a grenade would go off eventually, and are now throwing themselves on it in the most self-serving way possible.

For here is the heart of the matter: Just as we’ve seen with the church — and the church of football, natch — pretty much any time you have a closed, strongly patriarchal organization where men are supposed to impart some set of values to boys, you always wind up with some percentage of those men quite literally fucking some percentage of those boys. This is a fact; men are, left to their own devices, just awful. And the sooner we cop to this, the sooner we may begin to correct most of what is wrong with this world. For the record, I am saying this as a man, and I’m not trying to get laid. Just cut it out with this shit already. This is Philadelphia, and though we may be many unpleasant things from day to day, this is not who we are. Again, as ever, the Boy Scouts need to go.

Related: Q&A: Cameron Kline, The Local Eagle Scout Who Returned His Scout Medal In Protest Of The BSA’s Anti-Gay Policy

  • http://profiles.google.com/fish.face.freckle.fingers Count Ringworm

    The vast majority of men aren’t abusers. Please stop engaging in communal blame.

  • mcc99

    I was a Boy Scout for over 10 years. At no time did a) anyone try to sodomize me or b) was I aware of the same going on anywhere around me.

    Of all the many adults I knew when I was a kid, I have forgotten most of their names and hardly a one made a lasting impression on me, with the obvious exception of my parents. But the other notable exceptions: the scout leaders in my troop. They did a whole lot of teaching and just-plain-raising of me and a lot of other boys, some of whom came from families that were far from too “together”. Quite a number of boys in my troop were from divorced “families”, and for them, their only paternal reference points came from the adult leaders. All in all, they did a truly outstanding job, with very limited resources. Nothing but, for the most part, a whole lotta heart.

    Was it these men who concealed the crimes of a few others? No. It was the officials in the national organization that did so as well as the particular individuals in the particular troops where these things happened. And just like the people in power in Penn State and the Catholic Church, the ultimate responsibility for the continuation of the crimes rests with them and anyone in law enforcement who looked the other way. As for the responsibility for the commission of those crimes, of course the fault lies squarely with the actual molesters/rapists.

    I wonder about the author’s reference to the BSA as a “patriarchal” organization. Hardly. True that most of the leaders in it are men, but there are plenty of female ones, too. And I would like to point out that the entire time I was in the Scouts, at no time did anyone teach me songs about how great it was to oppress women, teach me to refer to girls in a mean or derogatory way, or tell me I had any rights inherently superior to females. Can’t say that about what gets taught in the GSA these days.

    As for the GSA, can it be said that female leaders there are “without sin”? Again, how can one imagine to hide in the Age of Google? Read: http://www.ageofconsent.com/comments/womenwhoabuse.htm:

    ‘Girl Scout’s mother says she’s disgusted by alleged assault- Former Girl Scout leader Mindy Lorenz, 19, pleaded innocent in Manchester District Court to two misdemeanor charges of endangering the welfare of a minor. Lorenz allegedly offered the child $100 to “fool around” during a Girl Scout group sleep-over held Feb. 18 in St. John the Baptist Church parish hall, according to court records. Police allege she kissed the child in a darkened, locked room for about 15 to 20 seconds. Lorenz, according to court records, denied offering money for sex but admitted to police that she told the girl about her own sexual experiences with another woman. She said she offered to “help” the girl if she wanted to experience a sexual encounter with another female, according to court records. The child had confided in a friend about the alleged incident and the friend, in turn, told the counselor.’

    Plenty more cases of male GSA leaders committing sexual assaults of girls get aired than of female ones. Is it because sexual predators are more likely to be male or because male sexual preds. are more likely to be caught? Well, again, look at the facts, not the hype: http://www.csom.org/pubs/mythsfacts.pdf:

    “Only a fraction of those who commit sexual assault are apprehended and convicted for their crimes. Most convicted sex offenders eventually are released to the community under probation or parole supervision.”

    “In 1994, less than 1% of all incarcerated rape and sexual assault offenders were female (fewer than 800 women) (Greenfeld, 1997). By 1997, however, 6,292 females had been arrested for forcible rape or other sex offenses, constituting approximately 8% of all rape and sexual assault arrests for that year (FBI, 1997). Additionally, studies indicate that females commit approximately 20% of sex offenses against children (ATSA, 1996). Males commit the majority of sex offenses but females commit some, particularly against children.”

    Now tie this in here, pp 114-115. It’s easy to see how female preds. are under-reported. And as for female preds. among the GSA? I have this observation: If a male leader picks up a 12-YO girl and for a moment cradles her in his arms the way you may expect a father to do with his daughter, but yet that girl isn’t his daughter, are you more inclined to imagine he is “copping a feel” than if he were a she? Probably. Take a look here. A female’s actions are much more likely to be viewed as care-giving, where the same actions done by a man as being a form of molestation.

    All the foregoing is not to say that the BSA’s secret list of actual or suspected child sex abusers/rapists should not be aggressively investigated. What it is to say is that 1) women are not spotless regarding this topic, yet not even female GSA leaders (though as yet there is no ‘secret list’ that has been exposed that they have of actual or suspected child sex abusers), and 2) one can hardly conclude that the entire BSA ought to be summarily tossed out the window because of this offense, though I fully support the legal prosecution of those in the national organization (and anyone else) who knew of collective or individual cases and failed to notify authorities directly. It is NEVER justifiable to fail to go full-throttle to alert the authorities, no matter how politically difficult it may be for you to do so in your own little world, to report child abuse of any kind. After all, would you want to be the kid that the “adults” turn their backs on because it’s just too inconvenient in some way for them to take every and all necessary steps to protect you? As a child, you have almost no political clout to employ on your own behalf. People just flat-out don’t want to hear from you, or don’t or won’t believe you if you say anything critical of an adult, particularly one that is respected or liked by the listener. So the only way children for all practical purposes get a defense, if at all, is if an adult stands up for them and will not back down, no matter how inconvenient it may be. If local police won’t listen, go to the county. If they won’t listen, call the state police. If they won’t listen, call the DA in your district and report that all three such authorities refused to do anything and your next move is the FBI. Failing that, contact your Congressman/Senator’s office. Failing that, contact the Office of the Attorney General. Next step is the White House switchboard. But you do *everything* you possibly can to get the authorities to hear, and it doesn’t matter how much ‘trouble’ it is to you in the short term. Because believe me, every single person involved in the Penn State, Catholic Church, and now BSA cover-ups really wishes they had. If there is anything worse than being seen as a “trouble maker”, it’s being revealed as someone who stood by and allowed some kid to be repeatedly f*cked in the a$$ by a slobbering bully or forced to perform oral sex on some looney woman dozens of times and did absolutely NOTHING to stop it.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Marc-Angelucci/582323413 Marc Angelucci

    Oh, and women don’t commit this crime sir? Let’s see: “Approximately 95% of all youth reporting staff sexual misconduct said they had been victimized by female staff. In 2008, 42% of staff in state juvenile facilities were female.”
    http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/pub/pdf/svjfry09.pdf

    “Inside youth prisons, scores of female guards violated boys.” http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/metro/stories/MYSA041107.01B.krod.3a6c8d4.html

    “Female Prison Guards Are More Likely Than Males to Have Sex With Inmates”
    http://abcnews.go.com/US/story?id=3024521&page=1

    2 out of 5 South African boys say they were raped, “most often by adult women.”
    http://www.canada.com/montrealgazette/news/story.html?id=ad3524cc-6076-4bc2-a015-23860553bd04

    A large study in Canada found high rates of homeless kids being molested, with 3/4 of the molestations of boys being by adult women, but there were still no programs for the boys, only for girls.
    http://www.canada.com/vancouversun/news/story.html?id=604d29af-5999-47ec-a156-0f5bc96954f2

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Marc-Angelucci/582323413 Marc Angelucci

    “Approximately 95% of all youth reporting staff sexual misconduct said they had been victimized by female staff. In 2008, 42% of staff in state juvenile facilities were female.”
    h t t p ://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/pub/pdf/svjfry09.pdf

    “Inside youth prisons, scores of female guards violated boys.”
    w w w .mysanantonio.com/news/metro/stories/MYSA041107.01B.krod.3a6c8d4.html

    See also, “Female Prison Guards Are More Likely Than Males to Have Sex With Inmates”
    h t t p ://abcnews.go.com/US/story?id=3024521&page=1

    Rapes of males frequently occur in the form of statutory rape, and not just by other males. A student survey in New Mexico found 43% of teacher sex abuse comes from female teachers but over 90% of prosecutions are of male teachers.

    A recent study found 2 out of 5 South African boys say they were raped, “most often by adult women.”
    w w w . canada.com/montrealgazette/news/story.html?id=ad3524cc-6076-4bc2-a015-23860553bd04

    A large study in Canada found high rates of homeless kids being molested, with 3/4 of the molestations of boys being by adult women, but there were still no programs for the boys, only for girls.
    w w w .canada.com/vancouversun/news/story.html?id=604d29af-5999-47ec-a156-0f5bc96954f2

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Greg-Allan/1437920629 Greg Allan

    I’m involved with rape crisis services and have a lengthy history of advocacy for male victims of sexual abuse.

    I would respectfully ask that this author and this publication refrain from any future commentary pertaining to male victims.

    Thankyou.

  • http://twitter.com/Mark_Neilg Mark Neil

    Attack anything that inspires men and boys. Destroy the male spirit. Encourage communal male guilt. Deny males a chance to bond. Strip the of anything that may help them establish an identity. That’s what I see here. And we’re told there is a war on women… HA!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Richard-Hopkins/753186552 Richard Hopkins

    So how is this transparent homocentric exercise in male bashing going for you then Philebrity? Not quite to plan by the look of it!