Boy Scout troop charter expires - Coeur d'Alene Press: Local News

Boy Scout troop charter expires

Kootenai County Sheriff's Office held charter for one year

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Posted: Saturday, March 8, 2014 12:00 am

COEUR d'ALENE - The Kootenai County Sheriff's Office let its charter of Boy Scout troop 911 expire at the end of 2013.

Tim McCandless, CEO of Boy Scouts of America-Inland Northwest Council, said Northwest Backcountry Rescue is now chartering the troop, starting officially at the first of the year.

Kootenai County Sheriff Ben Wolfinger said last year he was considering dropping the sheriff's office chartered troop when Boy Scouts of America ended its membership ban on gay youth. He said then that his Christian faith and the language in the Bible informed his view of homosexuality.

"Boy Scout troop 911 is stronger than it has ever been," McCandless said Friday. "It has great adult leadership, a strong charter, and it has been very active."

He said the troop has 22 active scouts and 15 volunteer adults.

"The troop never stopped meeting," he said.

Wolfinger couldn't immediately be reached for comment Friday.

Last year, he said he was considering dropping the charter because Idaho's "crimes against nature" statute prohibits sodomy, making any association with Boy Scouts inappropriate for the sheriff's office.

McCandless said the sheriff's office inherited the troop from the Kootenai County Search and Rescue council at the end of 2012. A few months later the national membership policy change happened.

"It was only the charter organization for one year," he said.

The Inland Northwest Council doesn't issue charters to government agencies, he said.

It was a "fluke" for a sheriff's office to charter a troop, he said. Charters usually go to churches, parent-teacher groups and civic organizations.

Charters help recruit scout volunteer leaders and provide meeting space and oversight.

"It ensures that we have local involvement in a neighborhood," McCandless said.

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  • idahogie posted at 11:40 pm on Wed, Mar 12, 2014.

    idahogie Posts: 50

    Even if homosexuality is a choice (a view only the stupidest among us hold) -- it is still true that our nondiscrimination laws protect choices. Religion, for example.

    Once again -- to return to your original asinine point -- choice is completely irrelevant.

    Do you plan to say anything intelligent, or are you just going to continue proving that you hold bigoted views?

  • will-- posted at 8:35 am on Wed, Mar 12, 2014.

    will-- Posts: 1214

    "That's irrelevant, and frankly pretty stupid"

    So we can agree, those were my thoughts when I saw you trying to equate race to the lifestyle choice of homosexuality.

  • will-- posted at 8:33 am on Wed, Mar 12, 2014.

    will-- Posts: 1214

    "the Idaho statute was rendered moot by Lawrence v. Texas, in 2003"

    So if a law were passed tomorrow that reduced the age of consent for a minor to 5 years old, would that make IT right?

  • idahogie posted at 7:17 pm on Tue, Mar 11, 2014.

    idahogie Posts: 50

    To be fair, not all of them are gay. Some are just trying desperately to bolster their underdeveloped manhood.

  • phredgtsd posted at 6:57 pm on Tue, Mar 11, 2014.

    phredgtsd Posts: 38

    PS - you naysayers should be more concerned about your teachers, coaches, and relatives. They will rape and pillage your your children more that any boy
    Scout. Read the news.

  • phredgtsd posted at 6:55 pm on Tue, Mar 11, 2014.

    phredgtsd Posts: 38

    Ever notice that those who cry the loudest about homosexuals frequently turn out to be gay? These are just kids. The sheriff should be very ashamed. I could care less about what the sheriff believes as a result of his religion. This is discrimination. I guess Ben lost sight of the whole separation thing from the US constitution. Hey Ben, how about joining us in the 21st century?

  • idahogie posted at 10:26 pm on Mon, Mar 10, 2014.

    idahogie Posts: 50

    I don't need to. That's irrelevant, and frankly pretty stupid.

    We protect people based on their behavior and choices, too. Like your choice of religion.

    I repeat. We didn't listen to the KKK back in the 1960s, and we don't listen to bigots today. We mock them. And we relish the embarrassing smack-downs that they get whenever they crawl out from under their rocks.

  • Scott S posted at 7:58 pm on Mon, Mar 10, 2014.

    Scott S Posts: 77

    Hey Fly, I agree with keepinitreal, but he or she is not me. Like I said before and like keepinitreal said, there hasnt been any talk of discriminating, only that it is disgusting.

  • will-- posted at 5:20 pm on Mon, Mar 10, 2014.

    will-- Posts: 1214

    "Yup. Just like in the 1960s south."

    Show me one instance of a black person making a decision NOT to be black - Michael Jackson doesn't count.

  • Mahiun posted at 11:13 am on Mon, Mar 10, 2014.

    Mahiun Posts: 5644

    You will die long before we do, old man. And not everyone will mourn....

  • older generation idaho posted at 9:46 pm on Sun, Mar 9, 2014.

    older generation idaho Posts: 10

    thank god for a long life that I've had. I read the comments here and am disgusted. the problem with the us now is that rape, murder, drugs are accepted and not punished. now we have the gender related issues. I hope Russia/us launches the nukes. time to clear out the trash and go back to where criminals are punished, death penalty, and gay s stay in the closet where they belong or hung. fly, I agree with you and I agree with the sheriff. there is no place in society for them

  • Fly in the ointment posted at 9:17 pm on Sun, Mar 9, 2014.

    Fly in the ointment Posts: 606


    So, if (they) were afforded all the "privileges" you take for granted, would you shaddap about it?

    You can't hide, Scott. Consider that.

  • idahogie posted at 7:16 pm on Sun, Mar 9, 2014.

    idahogie Posts: 50

    "The h0m0 lovers can't let things go can they?"

    Not until we have equality.

    "They continue to try and tell us normal folk how it should be, and never respect our views or opinions on the topic."

    Think again. You're abnormal. Most people support marriage equality. Welcom e to the minority!

    And as long as your "opinion" is that people should be discriminated against, your views deserve no respect. In fact, they deserve only mockery and abuse.

    "It's always their way, or the highway isnt it?"

    Yup. Just like in the 1960s south. We wouldn't listen to the KKK back then. And we won't listen to people like you now.

  • idahogie posted at 7:06 pm on Sun, Mar 9, 2014.

    idahogie Posts: 50

    You have the perfect screen name.

  • pginthemiddle posted at 9:25 am on Sun, Mar 9, 2014.

    pginthemiddle Posts: 84

    Yeah, opinions are like a_____oles. Everyone's got one.

    You use the phrase "...normal people."
    Who decides what and who is normal? You? And don't use the biological or (lest I say it...) the religious bible thumping explanation.

    Equality. When will people understand . With freedoms and rights comes the responsibility of knowing what they entail and their extent.
    I guess equality only exists if one is deemed "normal" by the Normal People's Society of America. Next thing you know, some "normal" Idaho legislator is going to create a bill that will require all of LGBTs to register and then be chipped so they can be tracked by "normal" people.

    No. I don't think you are "normal." There is no "normal".

  • searcher posted at 1:38 pm on Sat, Mar 8, 2014.

    searcher Posts: 365

    If you think your hate is normal, then you are truly delusional. I'm sad for you. You must truly live a miserable and unhappy life.

  • KeepinItReal posted at 12:33 pm on Sat, Mar 8, 2014.

    KeepinItReal Posts: 112

    Here we go again. The h0m0 lovers can't let things go can they? They continue to try and tell us normal folk how it should be, and never respect our views or opinions on the topic. It's always their way, or the highway isnt it? And its always the same tree hugging group on this blog spewing the same garbage... Telling us that we've all got to love everybody; telling us that we've all got protect the misunderstood students (the gays) from all the bad bullies in school; telling me who I need to conduct business with even though its none of your gdamn business! You freaks all make me and many other normal members of society sick. Tell you what, you want to put your wieners in places that they shouldnt go, go ahead and do it. Its your life. Its your health. Its your gross decision. Just quit force feeding it to the rest of us. HOMOSEXUALITY IS A DISGUSTING WAY OF LIFE. THATS MY OPINION, WHICH I AM ENTITLED TO.

  • slave posted at 10:28 am on Sat, Mar 8, 2014.

    slave Posts: 463

    You are correct Mr. Teague. We all need Jesus and the Bible. Christ is the payment for all of mans sin, He is Holy in every way and His Holy Word is Truth.

  • Randy_Myers posted at 10:14 am on Sat, Mar 8, 2014.

    Randy_Myers Posts: 136

    Glad the kids got a good Charter sponsor. Sorry we have Wolfinger as sheriff. He presents a poor role model to everyone not just Boy Scouts.

  • parenttoo posted at 9:35 am on Sat, Mar 8, 2014.

    parenttoo Posts: 115

    Thank you for this clarification of the facts.

  • Mahiun posted at 9:05 am on Sat, Mar 8, 2014.

    Mahiun Posts: 5644


    The issue's been resolved, it was an anomaly to begin with, there is no longer a conflict with BSA policy, and the kids have a sponsor for the troop. I'm having trouble seeing what the problem is here.....?

    Whether or not Wolfinger was correct in his assessment (he wasn't; the Idaho statute was rendered moot by Lawrence v. Texas, in 2003) is an entirely different matter. It may be legitimate to question his ability to equitably fulfill his job duties, but as far as the Boy Scout troop is concerned, Wolfinger is pretty much irrelevant at this point, isn't he?

  • straight up posted at 8:44 am on Sat, Mar 8, 2014.

    straight up Posts: 967

    Nothing to see here folks. Move along. But since that is the case...

    Paging Tony Stewart! Paging Tony Stewart!

    Time to ruin another life and plaster the national news with how hate filled and bigoted North Idaho is.

  • Miketeague posted at 8:28 am on Sat, Mar 8, 2014.

    Miketeague Posts: 2631

    The kids are a lot better off not being exposed to bigot, that doesn’t know law, has his mind deep in the gutter and hides behind a book of mythology.

  • oscar posted at 8:22 am on Sat, Mar 8, 2014.

    oscar Posts: 1708

    With his comments, I am wondering if Wolfinger will lift a finger to help a gay citizen who is a crime victim or in need of police assistance. Disgraceful.

  • ScoutParent posted at 7:49 am on Sat, Mar 8, 2014.

    ScoutParent Posts: 3

    As if McCandless would know anything about Troop 911 in the first place. This is really a non story
    the Sheriff's Dept. was just chartering us until we found another charter in the first place. They were
    always willing to let us continue to use the Search and Rescue building no matter what. McCandless has
    never once made a visit to our Troop and we like it that way. This is the same person who is still trying
    to sell Camp Easton.
    Mr. Wolfinger thank you so much for supporting our boys. We are very blessed to have you as a leader
    in our community.
    Lets remember that the only reason BSA decided to make this social change in their membership
    policy is because of loss of sponsorship money!

  • estatetracker posted at 7:39 am on Sat, Mar 8, 2014.

    estatetracker Posts: 385

    So what the Sheriff is saying is that it is legal for him to administer his office in a discriminatory manner when he finds conflict with his religion. If the scouts are guilty of "crimes of nature" and therefore illegal in the State it would seem that no public agency could support them, and everyone else who supports them would be guilty by association.

    I am no fan of the Boy Scouts of America--they have become another "non-profit" whose mid and upper level administrators fly first class, and stay in 5-star resorts while the scouts are peddling popcorn to pay for bare essentials. But that's not my point.

    It is disturbing that a public office can legally provide resources to an outside non-governmental organization at all--and more disturbing when the organization is predominately faith-based as are the Scouts. For many years the Sheriff's office even donated money to the Scouts with one of those nifty slush-fund accounts that was never legally authorized, but that was o.k. with Wolfinger?

    Makes me wonder how he reconciles his beliefs when he sits on the City of CDA Civil Service Commission while the city has an ordinance that prohibits LGBT discrimination. According to the City's website, the goal of the Commission is: " establish an equitable and uniform procedure for dealing with personnel matters; to attract the best and most competent persons available to municipal service; to assure that appointments and promotions of employees shall be based on merit and fitness; and to provide a reasonable degree of security for qualified employees...".

    ---As long as they're not gay?

  • manana posted at 5:38 am on Sat, Mar 8, 2014.

    manana Posts: 179

    Last year, he said he was considering dropping the charter because Idaho's "crimes against nature" statute prohibits sodomy, making any association with Boy Scouts inappropriate for the sheriff's office.

    Oh yeah. You know those scouts. Sex crazed adolescents goin' at it in every corner of their tent. How very 19th century of Wolfinger but Kudos to Northwest Backcountry Rescue. Anything for a vote or two, 'ey Ben. I'm guessing if Wolfinger had the misfortune to have one of THOSE kind of kids of his own they be out on the street forthwith.

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