Boy Scouts asking for input on gay membership
IRVING, TX, March 11, 2013, (LifeSiteNews.com) – The Boy Scouts of America are asking for citizens across the country to express their opinion about the BSA's policy barring open homosexuals from joining the group as members or scoutmasters.
In a tiny link at the top of their website, the Scouts announced their review of the policy. A second link simply asks readers, “Share your feedback.”
Last July, the 100-year-old outdoor group announced it would maintain its moral standards for members and leaders. However, in January the national scouting organization bowed to pressure to reconsider the policy.
A decision was expected last month. However, roughly 20 percent of the youth members' councils asked for the decision to be delayed until May, when 1,400 members can vote at their upcoming meeting in Grapevine, Texas.
The BSA issued a statement at the time saying “due to the complexity of this issue, the organization needs time for a more deliberate review of its membership policy."
Prominent figures have already weighed in on the ban's future.
Texas Governor Rick Perry, himself an Eagle Scout, stated that he hopes Scout leaders “will follow their historic position of keeping the Scouts strongly supportive of the values that make scouting this very important and impactful organization.”
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More than 60 prominent Texas state lawmakers, including U.S. Congressman Kenny Marchant, added their support last week, signing a statement calling on the Scouts to maintain the scouting tradition for future generations.
“Capitulating to the liberal social agenda not only undermines the very principles of scouting, but sets the stage for the erosion of an organization that has defined the American experience for generations of young men,” they write. “We urge you to protect all that scouting has been, and all that it can remain.”
Those who favor repealing the ban have also not been hesitant to make their views known.
In addition to homosexual lobbying groups, high-profile figures have called for the repeal of the ban on open homosexuality for scoutmasters and members. It was one of the issues that Barack Obama and Mitt Romney agreed on in the 2012 presidential race.
The heritage of scouting was so important to the body's executive leadership that the Boy Scouts won a 5-4 Supreme Court decision recognizing the right of private organizations to determine their own membership policies in 2000.