Boy Scouts To Review Anti-Gay Policy (Video)

Following a campaign, the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) has said it will review the policy which bans lesbians and gays from participation.

The campaign stepped up after Jennifer Tyrrell, a Cub Scout den mother in Ohio, was dismissed from her position after local Boy Scout officials learned she is a lesbian. It has been led by GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) and Zach Wahls, the activist son of lesbian moms.

Wahls is the teenage Iowan whose speech to Iowa’s State House in defense of his moms went viral last year. He has pointed out, drawing from his own childhood experience, that Boy Scout policy is actually elective.

BSA says that a resolution submitted by a Scout leader from the Northeast in April and presented at the BSA’s annual meeting last week in Orlando that would allow individual troops to accept gay people as scout leaders would be referred to a subcommittee, which will then make a recommendation to the national executive board. The process would likely be completed by May 2013.

Wahls said he and his allies planned a campaign to mobilize opposition to the gay-exclusion policy from within Scout ranks, with the goal of building pressure for the resolution to be approved.

Up to the day they end this policy, they’ll be saying they have no plans to do so. But there’s no question it’s costing the Boy Scouts in terms of membership and public support.

As both an Eagle Scout with a personal investment in the success of the Boy Scouts of America and as the son of a lesbian couple, it means a lot to see this change finally set in motion.

Current and former scouts have banded together to form Scouts for Equality.

Boy Scouts stands alone from other youth organizations which welcome gay, lesbian or transgender kids as well as parents, such as the Girl Scouts of America, the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, and the 4H Club.

Watch the interview with Wahls by Think Progress:

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Update: Emotional Fallout From Lesbian Den Mother Firing (Video)

Cub Scout Den Mother Dismissed Because She’s Lesbian

Teen Son of Lesbian Moms Becomes Star Rights Advocate (Video)

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47 comments

Elizabeth L.
Elizabeth L.3 years ago

The Boy Scouts of America should be made to change their name. This organisation has very little to do with the Scouting movement as Lord Baden-Powell envisaged.


God is not some narrow-minded personage, as some people would seem to imagine, but a vast Spirit of Love that overlooks the minor differences of form and creed and denomination and which blesses every man who really tries to do his best, according to his lights, in His service.

Lord Robert Baden-Powell

Brenda Towers
Brenda Towers3 years ago

It is not a problem in the U.K.

Suzy D.
Suzy D.3 years ago

How different to the LGBT policy of the UK organisation :

http://www.scoutbase.org.uk/library/hqdocs/facts/pdfs/fs185081.pdf

Come on `Boy Scouts of America`, do your good deed for the day, or year even !

Martha Eberle
Martha Eberle3 years ago

Good it's getting done, but gee!, The Boy Scouts of America sure make a big damn deal of out the ordinary and obvious. They'll come in at the tail-end of everyone else, saying they "accept" gays -- big of them!!

Florence Eaise
Florence Eaise3 years ago

good news thanks

Nancy Crouse
Nancy Crouse3 years ago

Ah yes. Teaching our young citizens of tomorrow about ethics and morals. Homophobia is at the top of their list.
All of the sexual assaults are not committed by homosexuals but heterosexuals. Very small percentage is committed by the LGBT community. What do you say about that you bunch of misinformed miscreants.

Berny P.
Berny p.3 years ago

YOU dont have to joint the boy scout.....

wouter r.
wouter r.3 years ago

The USA is only country in the world, where it is legal to be gay, but impossible to be gay and Boy Scout. If the BSA wants to keep banning gays, fine with me, but they should drop the congressional charter, the rights to the trademark "Scout" and the membership of the World Organization of the Scout Movement, to make room for a real Scouting organisation.

Marie W.
Marie W.3 years ago

'Bout time!

Catherine C.
Catherine C.3 years ago

My father was the BSA Commissioner for this area. He was a leader, scout and commissioner all of his life until he quit about 1998 when a leader was kicked out for being homosexual. He even wrote the BSA out of his will. He is now deceased.