Girls who identify as boys are now permitted to join the Boy Scouts of America under a new policy adopted by the organization on January 30. “Starting today, we will accept and register youth in the Cub and Boy Scout programs based on the gender identity indicated on the application,” said Chief Scout Executive Michael Surbaugh in a news release on the organization’s website. Previously, the Scouts registered youth based on the gender indicated on the child’s birth certificate. Surbaugh said the Boy Scouts of America is “committed to identifying program options that will help us truly serve the whole family […] all while remaining true to our core values, outlined in the Scout Oath and Law.” The BSA lists as one of its youth protection commitments to provide “the safest environment possible for our youth members.”
“It’s disappointing that once again, the Boy Scouts of America have embraced the trend of elevating political correctness above the safety, privacy and dignity of some of the youngest members of our society,” said NC Family President John L. Rustin. In July 2015, the Boy Scouts of America amended its adult leadership policy to remove the restriction on openly homosexual adult leaders, and this new transgender policy is simply a natural progression of that philosophy.
Parents who are looking for an alternative youth development program to Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts should consider Trail Life USA. Trail Life identifies its organization as “a Christian Outdoor Adventure, Character, and Leadership Program for boys and young men,” operating troops chartered through churches. North Carolina currently has 43 troops across the state designed for “biologically male children under the age of 18.” The Trail Life USA website has details about the program, the location of troops around the state, and guidelines for starting a troop in your area if one does not already exist.