Boy scout handbook

Boy Scouts Were Groomed To Think Sexual Abuse Was Part Of the Scouting Experience

When the Boy Scout’s Perversion or “P-Files” were released, thanks to a lawsuit filed by Attorney Paul Mones, many former Scouts throughout the nation began to focus their attention on Boy Scouts of America’s decades’ long policy of hiding its sexual abuse problem,

Abusers Groom Victims, Parents & The Broader Community

Pedophiles are extremely good at keeping their illicit activities a secret. When they get caught, you often hear members of the community saying things like, “I can’t believe he would do something like that.” Or “But he was such a nice guy.” This is because people who sexually abuse children work hard to groom not just their victims, but entire communities. 

What is grooming? Grooming is the term used to describe the broad range of activities predators use to integrate themselves into a community, build trust, and procure victims they can use to satisfy their sexual urges. 

Grooming starts in a way that looks very innocent. The predator will identify a job or volunteer opportunity that will allow them to be in close contact with their intended victims — children. This is why Boy Scout Troops were a magnet for pedophiles. 

The predator will work their way into a position of trust, like Troop Leader, which may also give them credibility or a certain statute in the community. They will then start to identify especially promising targets. The kids they pick to target are the ones who feel left out, or who don’t get the love or care they need at home. The predator singles these kids out by offering them the attention they crave. 

Next, the predator will work to strengthen their relationship with their chosen victim. They will buy them small gifts, and show them favoritism by doing things like letting the intended victim bend the rules while cracking down on other kids for similar behavior. 

Some predators will also begin to groom the victim’s family. They’ll offer to babysit or pick the victim up from school when the parents are busy. Stop by with gifts or even just to say hello. By becoming a regular fixture in the family’s social circle, they normalize behavior that might otherwise be seen as a red flag. 

Then the touching starts. At first, it is innocent. An “accidental” rub across the arm, the tousle of the hair, or a slight embrace. Then come the hugs. When the child doesn’t object, the predator takes things a step further, and a step further, until they are able to get their sexual urges fulfilled by the child. 

At this point, the child has such a close relationship with their abuser they believe what they are doing must be okay because “Troop Leader John Doe would never do anything to hurt me.” They feel no need to tell their parents about the behavior because it seems normal. 

The Boy Scouts Also Worked Hard To Hide Abuse 

Pedophiles are not the only ones who work hard to hide their abuse. The organizations that harbor them are often just as guilty of hiding the truth about inappropriate interactions between employees or volunteers and the children under the organization’s care. 

The executives at the Boy Scouts of America realized decades ago they had a problem with adults in the organization sexually abusing the Scouts almost from the beginning. But instead of reporting suspected abuse to the police, or even alerting a Troop’s parents that something was amiss, the organization chose to deal with problems internally. 

That’s why the Perversion Files were created. They were a way for the BSA to track and ban suspected abusers from interacting with children without sullying the organization’s reputation. The organization chose to protect itself instead of the children in its care. This betrayal is a direct cause of the BSA’s current bankruptcy

It Is Time To Hold The BSA Accountable 

The BSA is just as guilty of abuse as the pedophiles it empowered. Now it is time for victim-survivors to hold the organization accountable for the many wrongs it committed. If you were abused while participating in the Boy Scouts, you may be eligible for monetary compensation. Now is the time to contact Attorney Paul Mones and his team and get help filing a claim.