A few years ago, I was in attendance at the Corvallis High School Old-Timers Picnic. I was involved in a conversation with two ladies when one of them asked me about my No. 2 son and family. I answered with some pride that he and his son were in the Boy Scouts program at Mountain View School. The other lady chastised me for supporting such an organization because of its ban on gays and transsexuals from joining.

In the subsequent years since that conversation, the Boy Scouts of America have dropped the ban; the organization is open to most everyone.

In the early years of our history, slavery was the order of the day accepted by most people of the time.

It seems to me in these times of enlightenment we should not dwell on the indiscretions, real or perceived, of early leaders and pioneers (think J.C. Avery and Thomas Hart Benton) but we as citizens should be proud and honor our social and humanitarian achievements.

In the final analysis in this life, it is not about who we were but who we are.

Tom Butler

Corvallis (Jan. 2)

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