Urge the Boy Scouts to Accept Gay Scouts and Leaders

boy-scouts-mural-Richard-Elzey

Target: National Council of the Boy Scouts of America

Goal: Allow openly gay Boy Scouts members at all levels of the organization

The Boy Scouts of America will soon vote at its National Annual Meeting to change the current membership policy of denying openly gay Scouts to possibly allowing them. However, the proposed policy will still allow the BSA to exclude openly gay Scout leaders and other adult members. Urge the BSA to allow openly gay members at all levels.

The current policy at the BSA is as follows: “While the BSA does not proactively inquire about the sexual orientation of employees, volunteers, or members, we do not grant membership to individuals who are open or avowed homosexuals or who engage in behavior that would become a distraction to the mission of the BSA.” This is similar to the military’s former “don’t ask, don’t tell” rule.

After re-affirming its current policy in 2012, the BSA has responded to public opinion and has decided to propose a change during the May National Council meeting.

The proposed change would allow gay youth to join the Scouts, but would still disallow openly gay adult members. The policy will affect the nearly 2.7 million youth and 1 million adult Boy Scouts members, according to the BSA. While the BSA should be commended for recognizing that its current policy is in need of change, it is not enough. Encourage the BSA to vote to change its membership policy to allow all openly gay members.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear National Council of the Boy Scouts,

I commend you for recognizing that your current policy of disallowing openly gay Scouts needs a change. I urge you to vote to change that policy to allow all Scouts equally regardless of their sexual orientation. However, I believe that the proposed policy change is not enough to promote tolerance and acceptance among members of the Boy Scouts of America. The BSA should accept openly gay adult members as well.

One of the strongest lessons we can teach our youth is the value of tolerance in a increasingly diverse society. The BSA is the perfect vehicle to reach them with this lesson, among the many other values it instills in its members. I believe that sexuality is not a choice, and that discriminating against people of different sexualities within your organization is contrary to your mission of providing the best for the nation’s children. Discrimination is not conscientious, responsible, or productive: it is exclusionary, bigoted, and archaic.

Allowing openly gay leaders in your organization would show your young members that their own sexualities have no bearing on the strong and able citizens they will become.

Please vote to change the Boy Scouts of America member policy to include members of all sexualities.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Richard Elzey via Flickr

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One Comment

  1. I am now 76 years of age. I first joined as a Cub Scout some 68 years ago. Life was so innocent then. I was awarded the rank of Eagle Scout, ans later served as a professional in the Boy Scouts of America.

    My base values as a boy and now as a man were formed by my Scoutmaster and the Scout Oath and Law. Contained were Mentally awake and Moraly Straight.

    As a professional I dealt with the men who were attracted to young boys in a sexual way. I found that the sexual attraction to boys and young men was scarring the lifes of young men, under age.

    The problem was not boys attracted to boys, it was men attracted to boys.

    Gay boys who are into Scouting for a non sexual purpose are very welcome seems to be a good policy.

    Gay men who are into Scouting for Scouting activities will not let the gay side be known. If the gay side is known and become part of their Scouting, I do see many problems.

    As a professional I did deal with many great gay men who could not keep sex out of their contact with boys and young men.

    My scoutmaster of 8 years was single. I never asked him if he was straight. He taught me values and how to prepare for life. Sex was not a part of Scouting at that time and I do not agree with sex as a part of Scouting now.

    For those who want Gay Scouting, start a Gay Scouting program. Just leave The Boy Scouts of America out of your agenda.

    The key is the Agenda, gay men can be a valued part of anything, just as long as it is not an agenda of promoting the lifestyle.

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