The Boy Scouts of America Takes a Step in Right Direction
May 22, 2015
Yesterday, Boy Scouts of America (BSA) President Robert Gates called on Boy Scouts of America’s leadership to end the ban on gay adult leaders. He advocated that “we must deal with the world as it is, not as we might wish it to be.” During Gates’ service as Secretary of Defense, he ended the U.S military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, which discriminated against the LGBT community similarly to current BSA regulations. Noting potential discrimination lawsuits and growing internal dissent over the gay ban, Gates concludes now that current BSA rules “cannot be sustained” and says he supports a policy that “accepts and respects our different perspectives and beliefs.”
Boy Scouts of America is one of the nation’s largest and most prominent values-based youth development organizations with over 3.7 million members. For more than a century, Scouting has been teaching America’s youth about the outdoors and caring for the environment. BSA has been involved with Earth Day service activities since its inception in 1970, working with local communities to enhance the environment and to conserve natural resources.
On April 18 at Global Citizen 2015 Earth Day to an audience of over 250,000, Boy Scouts of America announced a new Earth Day Award program. Every year leading up to the 50th anniversary of Earth Day in 2020, a new patch can be earned by Scouts who complete individual acts of service for Earth Day.
Leadership and team building is built into Scouting traditions. Equality and social justice should be, too. Tell the Boy Scouts of America that you support ending its discrimination against gay Scout leaders.
Seoyoung Kim & Amber Dai, Interns