Boy Scouts to Lead NYC Pride March This Sunday

Boy scoutsAt the 44th Annual NYC Pride March this Sunday, New York-area Boy Scouts will be among the groups leading the parade as they speak out against the Boy Scouts of America’s discriminatory ban on gay adults. 

GLAAD reports:

Three generations of Boy Scouts — gay and straight — will be on hand and in uniform at nation's oldest and largest LGBT Pride event, where they will present the American flag during the national anthem and subsequently serve as Color Guard during the march. […]

“We are grateful for this invitation from NYC Pride, and we are honored and humbled to provide this patriotic service to the LGBT community of New York,” said Stacey Sarnicola, Brooklyn chapter lead, Scouts for Equality. “Since 1978, the BSA has held a policy that excluded gay youth and parents. While the BSA voted last year to end the policy barring gay youth from participation, it has made no change in its membership policy regarding adults. The Greater New York Councils' inclusive policy is what gave me permission to allow my son to join the Boy Scouts. It's what gives us permission to march, and it gives us hope for a BSA for all in the near future."

Slc boy scoutsGLAAD adds that it remains unclear what repercussions (if any) will face the Scouts after participating in the march. BSA policy prohibits members from using Scouting to "promote or advance any social or political agenda" and Scout leaders who have marched in past Pride parades have been reprimanded and told to sign letters of apology for the violations. The Greater New York Councils, which serves nearly 150,000 Scouts in New York City, however, has previously emphasized its commitment to full inclusion of gay Scouts.


  1. Ny Larson says

    The Scouts marched last year. I didn’t know whether to boo them or cheer them on. I wanted to support the scouts who were marching and taking a stand, but not the Boy Scout organization for being anti-gay. The Mormons marched as well. Same thing. Wanted to praise the marchers, not the organization they belong to. The result was when both groups passed where I was standing it was rather quiet. No cheers, no boos- just nothing.

  2. Robert M. says

    Good for the NY Council. It’s time to return the Boy Scouts to the inclusive, liberal, social, leadership training organization it used to be…

  3. Paul W says

    Slight correction.

    The world’s first city-permitted street-closing gay pride parade was held in Los Angeles on that same day in 1970. The NYC event was planned to take place on the sidewalk, and therefore didn’t need a permit. It then overflowed into the street due to the large number of participants. This was one of seven gay pride parades that took place on that day in NYC, LA, Chicago (sorry I don’t know the other four — but San Francisco wasn’t one of them). All others were also “sidewalk” events.

    The following year (1971), all were city-permitted street closing events.

    But aside from that, kudos for those advocating for change in the Boy Scouts.

  4. says

    Thanks for posting this. For recent and related comments on the BSA’s anti-gay contradictions, check out “Boy Scouts Contradict Their Own Handbook in Defending Anti-Gay Policy” ( ). And here’s an earlier, related post: “What the Boy Scouts (Pretend to) Forget: Heterosexuals Have a Sexual Orientation Too” ( ) – MK (Youth Allies)

  5. Stacey Sarnicola says

    Please Cheer for the Boy Scouts as they go by. Every single one who is marching is a member of Scouts for Equality, and we are trying to CHANGE the discriminatory policy of the BSA from the INSIDE! In fact, the active scouts risk expulsion from the BSA simply for marching in uniform, and like their Scout Oath, are brave, indeed, and are standing up for equality. Directly behind the uniformed color guard will be our Scouts for Equality banner with a large group of LGBT and straight supporters of change in the BSA!

  6. andover1 says

    I was a Boy Scout and loved it. It is a great organization and I really think it should be promoted and applauded. In an era when its totally uncool to be a Boy Scout I think the organization teaches kids a lot of good values and skills. The gay issue sadly tainted their image but I do think it can all be worked out and the Scouts will be great again. Applaud them as they walk by, please.

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