Target: Northern Star Council of Minnesota and west Wisconsin
Goal: Commend action of remaining open to gay scouts and troop leaders
In the wake of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA)’s recent decision to reaffirm its official ban on openly gay scouts or troop leaders, it is important to take notice of those who take a stand against such discriminatory policies. The Northern Star Council, the largest Boy Scout group in Minnesota, has been inclusive of gay leadership and scouts for twelve years, and will continue to do so despite the lack of change in official Boy Scouts policy.
The BSA’s recent reaffirmation of its ban on openly gay scouts and troop leaders has left many feeling cold, and has raised serious concerns about the message being spread to youth both gay and straight. Children in the organization are being taught exclusivity and fear of gay people. Older scouts who have realized their own homosexuality are not able to be honest with fellow scouts and troop leaders for fear of losing a job with the organization and being kicked out. In this hostile environment, we ought to take time to acknowledge and commend those brave voices which choose to speak out and stand up for inclusivity even in the face of official disapproval.
Write to the Northern Star Council and let the group know that you support inclusivity in the Boy Scouts, and that its bravery in continuing its policies despite opposition from the National organization is commendable.
Dear Northern Star Council,
I am writing to commend your choice of remaining inclusive to gay leadership and troop members in spite of the BSA’s decision that it is officially remaining closed to openly gay troop leaders, employees, and members. The official BSA policy teaches young scouts exclusivity, and that gay adults are dangerous and strange. It prevents older scouts who have realized their homosexuality from feeling safe or comfortable being open about it, and is shamefully discriminatory.
Your decision to remain inclusive despite official policy demonstrates incredible bravery, and it deserves recognition. Thank you for remaining open and teaching young people that gay is okay. I hope that you will continue to proudly support LGBT leaders and scouts, as you have done for the last twelve years.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Flickr via cbucky