I’ve never been a Boy Scout, nor have I ever wanted to be. So, whenever I’ve heard arguments for or against allowing LGBT people to either participate in or volunteer for the 102-year institution, I never paid much attention. To me, being a boy scout had no bearing upon my daily life. That is, until now.
The Boy Scouts of America spent the past two years reviewing their policy and determined that the ban must remain in place so that families may retain the right to address sexual orientation on their own terms and according to their own values. According to the Boy Scouts, in order for these families to address sexual orientation on their own terms, they must prevent gay members and volunteers from participating in the organization. Somehow this discriminatory ban fosters quality conversation at home and allows for an open mind.
You know what I miss most in this world? Honesty. I miss the days when someone would discriminate against you and tell you to your face exactly why they felt the way that they do. Why can’t the Boy Scouts of America just be up front and say they don’t like gay people? Don’t hide behind values or families… just speak the truth.
The truth is that the Boy Scouts of America dismissed the mother of a 7-year-old boy out of his troop because she was a lesbian. The truth is an organization based on honesty, fairness and integrity has chosen the path of discrimination and cowardice. This committee of eleven nameless, faceless individuals has chosen unanimously to hide behind this discriminatory ban in order to protect what they consider to be “family values.”
I’ve never been a Boy Scout, nor have I ever wanted to be. But it would have been nice that if I had ever changed my mind, I could have joined. I could have earned my badges with integrity, honesty and a sense of fairness. I could have worked together with my peers to learn survival techniques, the value of hard work and trust. All things the leaders at the Boy Scouts of America have forgotten.