PAT LEACH: Vote could decide future of scouting
May 22, 2013 3:00 PM

Keep sex and politics out of the Boy Scouts of America! We haven’t seen much (until Sunday’s Gazette) in the media about the national leadership of the Boy Scouts possibly changing their longstanding policy against having openly homosexual Scout leaders or Scouts.

Every American who believes in freedom of thought and religious liberty should be alarmed by the attacks upon the Boy Scouts by a politically motivated and financially driven gay rights movement.

Every parent concerned about guiding and protecting their own children should also be alarmed by the proposed change to the Boy Scout policy when, not long ago, the Supreme Court ruled that the Scouts had the “right” to ban gays from the organization.

As a parent of an Eagle Scout from a few years ago, I was not up to date on the issue locally so I decided to call a longtime area Scout leader to ask his thoughts on the issue. I was frankly shocked at the response.

With extreme confidence, he predicted the ban is going to be lifted. After all, he said, the Scouts cannot deny any boy the opportunity to be involved in positive Scouting events. Not all gays are pedophiles, he told me, and Scouts need to learn tolerance. It takes a lot of money to run the Scouting program, he added.

Recently the Scout leadership surveyed 200,000 Scouting families on this issue. The results: 61 percent responded “no, do not lift the ban” while 34 percent responded “yes, lift the ban.” Yet, is the leadership going to bow to the gay rights group’s bullying demands, cave to the loss of revenue or are they going to support the Christian teachings that have long produced morally straight Scouts?

On May 6 the Family Research Council, a nonprofit group supporting family values, hosted the “Stand with Scouting Sunday” simulcast. Go online at frc.org/StandwithScouting Sunday to see the video and why the Scout leadership should “stand strong.”

Plus go online to OnMyHonor.org and sign the petition or call the Boy Scouts of America at (972) 580-2000 and tell them not to change their membership standards.

Some 1,400 voting delegates will vote Thursday to determine the fate of this youth organization. Will big money or the safety of children win out?

Pat Leach

Marion Center

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