Conservatives Predict ‘Mass Exodus’ If Boy Scouts Accept Gays

Written by Zack Ford

This week, the executive board of the Boy Scouts of America will reconsider the organization’s policy of barring gay Scouts and leaders. As a result of this proposed change, many conservatives are urging the group to maintain its discrimination.

Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) has written extensively about how the Boy Scouts affected his life, and he reiterated those thoughts to hundreds of Texas Scouts who gathered in the state House of Representatives on Saturday for their annual Report to State. Speaking to reporters afterward, Perry defended the discriminatory policy:

PERRY: Hopefully the board will follow their historic position of keeping the Scouts strongly supportive of the values that make Scouting this very important and impactful organization. I think most people see absolutely no reason to change the position and neither do I… To have popular culture impact 100 years of their standards is inappropriate.

Perry also disagreed that a change would make the Scouts more tolerant, claiming, “I think you get tolerance and diversity every day in Scouting.”

Fellow former presidential hopeful Rick Santorum has offered a similar screed against the proposed change in the Scouts’ policy, suggesting the board’s vote this week is “a challenge to the Scouts’ very nature” that will cause a “mass exodus,” “leaving the Scouts hollowed at its core.” Indeed, a whole coalition of anti-gay hate groups is calling on the Scouts’ to maintain the policy because of the false assumption that all homosexuals are pedophiles.

Over the weekend, President Obama disavowed all of these claims in a pre-Super Bowl interview, saying that the Scouts should drop the policy because “gays and lesbians should have access and opportunity the same way everybody else does in every institution and walk of life.” Obama has previously condemned the policy because he “opposes discrimination in all forms.”

This post was originally published by ThinkProgress.


Related Stories:

Boy Scouts Board Will Consider Lifting National Anti-Gay Ban Next Week

What Boy Scouts Can Learn from Girl Scouts

6 Signs of Trouble for the Anti-Gay Boy Scouts



Kay Redmon
Kay Redmon4 years ago

I find it hard to believe the way of thinking of some people. DO the Catholics pull their sons out of their private Catholic schools ??? If they also belong to the Scouts that may be their salvation & teach them to think that everyone is born equal, but what road they take in later life shift's this balance because of what is taught to them. Children are always honest & some parents, priest's, scout leaders or whoever they spend a lot of time with can warp their minds. Don't automatically assume one person's sexual preferences changes that of people they associate with. It's not a disease that is contagious. Boys go to school with boys as girl's do so with girls, or co-educational schools, does this mean if a boy /girl has different sexual preferences this turns them into paedophiles, I think not.. . There are far to many bigots & do-gooders that do more harm than good. Let children be children & don't teach them to be bigots as well. Gays are also human beings & many of them are in positions of power who cover up their sexual life, because of bloody minded people, such as those involved in the scouting movement who must take pleasure of patting each other on the back..This is discrimination to all......

Pamela W.
Pamela W4 years ago

I hope they're right !!!!!! Those who would leave, over this, are the types who should never have been scouts in the first place !!!! They're a disgrace to the movement and would have the founders "turning in their graves" !!!!!!!!

Natasha Salgado
Past Member 4 years ago

Ciao Ciao then...

Lydia Price

It's not gays everyone should worry's the pedophiles. If a priest can be a sexual predator, then so can anyone else. Most pedophiles are heterosexual. The boy scouts are probably safer than many churches.

Christian R.
Land Lost4 years ago

I don't think an organization for kids needs to get into the politics of their members or leaders sexual preferences, or even make it an issue. America is a screwed up country. Most countries don't even think about things like this. Especially for kids organizations. But I could certainly sympathize with parents not wanting gays using the position of boy scout leader as platform for gay rights or equality. Parents don't want their kids joining the organization for that.. that's not what it's about. Although irregardless of these silly issues, I can't really see what the point of being a boy scout is.. of course, helping old ladies across the street is still ok in my book.

Anne Marie M.

Canada has always been more proressive and civil than so many other countries. thank you Melvin.

Also, to the bigots? That is not "name calling"..cry baby that is fact...if you do not people because of their sexual orientations, clolor of skin, religion, or country of origin, etc...that makes you a bigot!!!...that means you discriminate!!!!

Marvin Caplan
Marvin Caplan4 years ago

Hi all, I am in Canada. Canadian scouts do not discriminate by race, religion, or sexual preference. Canadian scouting continues to do fine.

To all you folks that don't want to allow gays to lead scouts, excuse me, but most gays in heavily conservative areas just don't come out. So you will never know anyway. Gays have lead scout groups for the last century, and no one knew. Frankly you are looking for problems where none exist. As far as those who quote the bible, it mentions not lying with a man as with a woman once, it talks a lot more about justice for the "other" or stranger - thirty six times actually.

Scot Roberts
Scot Roberts4 years ago


I knew you weren't addressing me, and I didn't take it personally. I was just trying to help you understand what's really going on.

Also, you misunderstood the "over a million" comment. I got the information from a TIME magazine article where it said:

"Other petitions urged two Scouts executive board members - James Turley, CEO of Ernst & Young, and AT&T chief Randall Stephenson - to push for change from within. Rallied by a group of high profile Scouts and their families, more than one million people have signed the petitions."

The article is available here where they give you the first part but you have to register to read the rest.,9171,2135128,00.html

As I said below....the article states 200 Eagle Scouts have returned their badges and resigned....not one million.

Bill Reese
Bill Reese4 years ago

Hello Anne, I am not mean or nasty as I am just a human being that believes each person or ogranization should have their own free say in their lives and who they associate with. That does not mean that they are mean or bigotted as you indicate, it is just the opposite. If there was a club or oganization that did not want me for "whatever" reason, I would not worry about it, and I would build my life around me, and what I enjoy and with others that enjoy my company. I would not bawl, cry or make a fuss just so I could call people names. That is really insane.

Anne Marie M.

Oh, for goodness sake! Stop it already. I cannot stand you bigots. All of you need to go and form your own nation....and leave those of us who believe all children, and adults are equal. Sexual Orientation has nothing to do with the kind of person you are. Bigots on the other says a lot about the kind of person you are. I don't care if you are 65 or 6 - get with it, and stop being so closed minded and intolerant. I am an open minded person, and I accept people the way they long as they are not mean, nasty and bigoted.