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Boy Scouts: A Leaker Spoiled What Was to Be a Private Discussion of Gay Ban, and All Hell Broke Loose


The recent reconsideration by the Boy Scouts of its ban on gay scouts and leaders was meant to be a private discussion behind closed doors, but those plans were foiled because someone inside the organization leaked the plans to the media, the NYT reports:

BsaInstead, the exact opposite of quiet deliberation broke loose with a fury on Jan. 28, when word of the proposed change was confirmed in a statement from Boy Scouts headquarters, followed by further reverberations this week when the Boy Scouts said the decision would be deferred until the annual national meeting in May. Groups on both sides said on Friday that the three-month window to marshal their forces and tactics in influencing opinion inside and outside scouting would be exploited with gusto. Without the leak, and the expectations about sudden change that arose as a result, there would not have been a window at all.

“We are amazingly sorry with the fact that this got out and got ahead of us,” said Tico A. Perez, scouting’s national commissioner, at a town hall meeting on Tuesday with about 250 staff members and volunteers with the Boy Scouts of America, including the executive board. A recording of Mr. Perez’s comments, made by someone at the meeting, was obtained by The Times.

The source of the leak has not been identified, but its effect has been evident, the Times reports. "External organizations" have "seized the moment" and the issue has become one of national focus.

The BSA announced this week that they have postponed their vote on the gay ban until May, giving those external organizations much more time to debate this issue in the public sphere.

Conservative commentator Horace Cooper of the National Center for Public Policy Research joined Thom Hartmann on the RT show 'The Big Picture' to argue that the Scouts shouldn't have to let gays in.


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  1. So who do we petition? I am sure that hundreds of the guys who read this blog were gay scouts, just as I was!

    Posted by: billmiller | Feb 10, 2013 9:05:50 AM

  2. Unfortunately, it seems that most comments appear to be from people who are not old enough to know what Scouting was in this country 40-60 years ago. Back then, the Moron Church was not the sponsors of Scout Troops. Back then, Gay and Strait Scouts got along fine. We frequently went on weekend Camping trips to nearby undeveloped areas several times during the non cold months. Gay Scouts and "Straits" got along fine without any problems. It was only when Churches got involved in Scouting that we had problems. The Churches have destroyed the "Live and Let Live" life of Scouting.

    Insidentily, Has anyone not noticed that the Churches have gotten involved because they are losing so many members that they decided that MAYBE they might gain some by "Educating young boys to their beliefs" while they are still young enough to not realize that they are being Brain Washed?

    Posted by: Jerry6 | Feb 10, 2013 3:51:58 PM

  3. @Diogenes Arktos: The BSA had African American members in 1911. The issue was that membership in a particular "troop" or "council" was a local decision, so while there was racial discrimination, it more or less followed local customs.

    More or less, they tolerated racial discrimination, much as the U.S. federal government did until the civil rights movement made that unacceptable. It seems the BSA did not actually ban racial discrimination until 1974 - about 10 years after the Civil Rights Act was passed.

    We can use that as an estimate of how long it will take for them to ban discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation: their behavior regarding racial discrimination suggests that they will be 10 years behind, although it might end faster today (assuming economic pressure will increase faster than it did in the past).

    Posted by: Bill | Feb 10, 2013 5:32:04 PM

  4. Years ago...(1960's! Too long ago!) I was standing outside the school room, with a few other boys, waiting to go inside to join the Boy Scouts.
    I was being 'teased' (called 'bullying' today) by an obnoxious kid, Frank Garofalo, who had been a pain in the ass as long as I could remember.
    This time, I had had Enough...and I decked him. He fell back against the door, and to the ground. I decided that the Boy Scouts was Not For Me, and walked away.

    Posted by: Bruce Wayne | Feb 10, 2013 8:39:03 PM

  5. And of course no experience out side the US matters does it?
    Gays are not restricted from membership or leadership positions in Scouts Canada, the Baden-Powell Service Association in the United States, Scouts Australia, and most European associations, including The Scout Association of the United Kingdom (you know the birth of Scouting), Ring deutscher Pfadfinderverbände of Germany (German Scout Federation), and the Swedish Guide and Scout Association.
    Then again the same seems true for marriage. Canada has had it for ten years and the only impact seems to have been our banks coming through the crash intact. But that never seems to come up in the discussions. (If the other side can play correlation without causality why cant we?)

    Posted by: Canuck | Feb 11, 2013 11:14:33 AM

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