Ryan Andresen Hub

Boy Scouts to Receive Delivery of More Than 1.4 Million Petitions Calling for End to Gay Ban


GLAAD reports that the Boy Scouts of America are set to get a huge delivery this morning.

TyrrellOn Monday, at 11:00 Central, Boy Scouts of America headquarters in Dallas will get a visit from ousted Boy Scout mom Jennifer Tyrrell, gay Eagle Scout Will Oliver, gay former Scoutmaster Greg Bourke, and Eric Andresen, father of a gay Scout denied his Eagle Award - and they'll be bringing with them the voices of more than a million Americans who want the BSA to end its ban on gay scouts and volunteers.

The national leaders of the Boy Scouts of America are gathered this week for to discuss an end to the organization’s discriminatory ban.

"Millions have been moved to speak out in favor of ending the anti-gay ban from across religions, race, and political backgrounds including current scouts and corporate sponsors," said GLAAD President Herndon Graddick. "While an end to the ban will strengthen scouting and stop the harm it caused to so many young gay people, the campaign for change will continue until the national policy is one where every young gay person is allowed to participate."

Today, the Family Research Council and other hate groups took out a full-page ad in USA Today urging the BSA to retain its anti-gay policies.

President Obama weighed in in a 60 Minutes interview that ran before the Super Bowl, saying that the Boy Scouts should allow gays to join its organization . Said Obama: "My attitude is that gays and lesbians should have access and opportunity the same way everybody else does, in every institution and walk of life."

GLAAD Slams Boy Scouts for Killing Local Board's Approval of Gay Scout's Eagle Award

GLAAD is blasting the Boy Scouts for rejecting a gay scout's application for Eagle scout one day after it was reported that a local board had unanimously approved the honor and forwarded it on to the national organization in defiance of the BSA's ban.

AndresenCNN reports:

John Fenoglio, Scout executive for the Mount Diablo-Silverado Boy Scout Council, said the Eagle rank application from Ryan Andresen of Moraga, California, wasn't approved because of "membership standards," specifically "duty to God, avowed homosexuality, and the fact that he is now over 18 years of age."

Contrary to some media accounts, Andresen's application wasn't approved by the local council in Contra Costa County, nor was it submitted to the Boy Scouts' national office, Fenoglio told CNN.

GLAAD is now saying that the national BSA came down hard on the local group, strong-arming it to reject Andresen's request, despite the fact that he has earned it:

According to Eagle Scout and Scouts for Equality founder Zach Wahls, the volunteer Eagle Board of Review traditionally has authority over Eagle applications, and, if approved, a Scout leaves that meeting with an understanding that he is an Eagle Scout. In Ryan's case, the board chair took an additional step, and received verbal confirmation from Scout Executive, John Fenoglio, that he would approve Ryan's application.

But Ryan's victory was short-lived, as Fenoglio, a paid employee of the BSA, reversed course and rejected the board's unanimously approved application -- an unprecedented action. Local Scout volunteers speculate that Fenoglio's decision was heavily influenced by BSA national.

"It's an unprecedented move," says Wahls. "It's clear that Fenoglio's reversal was forced by BSA national. He's a paid employee, and unfortunately, National exerts a lot of influence over their staff. His reversal, however, is most disappointing."


The Andresen family is devastated, but what hurts them more is that BSA national would rather soil the official Eagle application process and pit local paid staff against volunteer leaders, than allow a gay Boy Scout to be awarded an honor he's earned.

This marks the second time Ryan has been rejected by Scouting leaders he looks up to -- just because he's gay. To make matters worse, BSA Executives – the unelected, paid brass helming an organization that touts the principles of honesty and integrity -- continue to malign Ryan in the national media.

Local California Scout Chapter Challenges National Ban on Gays by Approving Ryan Andresen's Eagle Scout Application


A California Boy Scouts chapter is challenging the national Boy Scouts organization after it approved gay scout Ryan Andresen's application for Eagle Scout status and forwarded it to the umbrella organization for approval, Reuters reports:

"From what I understand, this has never happened before," Eric Andresen, father of former scout Ryan Andresen, told Reuters.

"It's the first in-your-face (challenge)," said Bonnie Hazarabedian, who chaired the Boy Scout district review board that signed off on Ryan's Eagle scout application and forwarded its recommendation last week to the national headquarters for final approval...

..."I don't think sexual orientation should enter into why a Scout is a Scout, or whether they are Eagle material," said Hazarabedian. "We felt without a doubt he deserved that rank."

The Boy Scouts of America did not respond immediately to questions emailed by Reuters on Monday afternoon. At the time Ryan's case grabbed attention last fall, BSA spokesman Deron Smith issued a statement saying Andresen's Boy Scout membership had been revoked.

GLAAD adds:

Ryan was refused the Eagle status last year after coming out as gay. Because the BSA has upheld its discriminatory ban, 18-year-old Ryan was told he was ineligable for the BSA's highest honor, despite years of scouting and his completion of an anti-bullying project. In response, Ryan's mom, Karen Andresen, started a Change.org petition that has since received more than 450,000 signatures calling for her son to be given the same opportunities as other Boy Scouts.

"Councils across the nation are rejecting the Boy Scouts' grossly discriminatory ban on gay scouts, echoing the support of fellow scouts, business leaders, and the American public,” said GLAAD President Herndon Graddick. “How long can the BSA go on ignoring its own members and its core values of fairness, leadership and integrity? The growing number of councils welcoming gay scouts and leaders reminds BSA autocrats: change will come with you, or without you."

Sen. Boxer, Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom Support Ryan Andresen, Scout Denied Eagle Status For Being Gay


Ryan Andresen has some new heavy weights behind his campaign to win the Eagle Scout status that is rightfully his. Andresen has been in the Boy Scouts for twelve years and should be an Eagle Scout, but the tenaciously discriminatory Scouts denied him the award because 17-year old Andresen is openly gay.

Since the story broke, bold-faced names like Ellen DeGeneres and Anderson Cooper have come out for him. And now so have Sen. Barbara Boxer, San Francisco Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom and 33 California state lawmakers, including State Senator Leland Yee.

For her part, Senator Boxer wrote a letter to Ryan sharing her support. "Your perseverance to raise awareness against bullying is commendable. I admire your courage to stand up for who you are, as well as the bravery you have demonstrated in the face of intolerance," she wrote.

Newsom took a more direct approach, writing to the Boy Scouts of America, "In defending this hurtful and discriminatory policy barring gay youth and leaders, the Boy Scouts of America are simply standing on the wrong side of history. And in doing so, the Boy Scouts are hurting the very people that you aim to serve: the young men who participate in your programs."

He went on, "Scout leaders who are speaking out against this hurtful policy inspire me. I urge the Mt. Diablo Silverado Council to follow the brave precedent established by other local councils by ending anti-discriminatory practices and approve the Eagle Scout award Ryan so justly deserves."

State Sen. Yee and his colleagues, meanwhile, had this to say to the BSA: "We ask that Ryan Andresen receive the honor that he has rightfully earned. To deny him the title of Eagle Scout denigrates his efforts, and cheapens the title for his fellow Eagles."

"To hold him to a different standard, to say he is unworthy of this honor because of his sexual orientation is as offensive and un-American as it would be to do so because of the color of his skin."

Anderson Cooper Interviews Ryan Andresen, Boy Scout Denied Eagle Scout Rank for Being Gay: VIDEO


18-year-old Boy Scout Ryan Andresen and his amazing mom Karen were interviewed by Anderson Cooper about the BSA's denial of Eagle Scout rank to him because he's gay, despite the fact that he had completed every requirement.

Andresen says that he has had 170 pledges from other scouts wanting to give him their Eagle pins.


Continue reading "Anderson Cooper Interviews Ryan Andresen, Boy Scout Denied Eagle Scout Rank for Being Gay: VIDEO" »

Florida Eagle Scout to Give Badge to Boy Scout Denied One for Being Gay: VIDEO


Dr. Andy Zerbinopoulos of Jacksonville, Florida thinks it's not fair that Ryan Andresen, the Boy Scout who earned an Eagle Scout badge but was denied it by the BSA because he's gay, can't have one.

So Zerbinopoulos says he's sending Andresen the one he earned 16 years ago.

"I'm not ashamed of who I am, he shouldn't be ashamed of who he is. And even though it isn't the same as receiving the award that he earned, I want him to know that there are people out there who support him."


Continue reading "Florida Eagle Scout to Give Badge to Boy Scout Denied One for Being Gay: VIDEO" »


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