The Boy Scouts of America tries to pretend that LGBT people aren't morally straight. That's the entire basis for keeping us out of scouting. Well, I have news for them: There's a long list of straight people who've been involved in scouting who are not morally straight.
I am a Boy Scout. As a matter of fact, I'm an Eagle Scout. And yet I cannot continue to serve the organization that played a large part in shaping who I am today. Why? Because of whom I love, which apparently negates the values that were ingrained in me during my years of scouting.
The BSA knows that its latest proposal is simply not good enough. Discrimination is never OK! The fact that the BSA has the legal right to deny LGBT people membership doesn't mean that it is morally right.
The reaction from both sides of the issue suggests that the recommended policy change, allowing openly gay members but keeping a ban on gay adult leaders, was likely doomed for failure the moment it was announced.
Presumably, the Boy Scouts still believe that they must protect their charges from us scary adult gay men. And it's not just a concern about potential attraction. If it were, they'd also ban heterosexual women from being den mothers. It's a concern that we are predators.
I felt violated, because the spirit of Boy Scout bigotry had descended on my home, forcing me to explain to my son that I am not as universally loved as he supposed. This is a state of affairs that my sons had been blissfully unaware of... until now.
So a boy can come out as gay, be a great scout and be accepted by the organization but not even think about being a scoutmaster as an adult? And how can a gay scout feel that he is not stigmatized by the Boy Scouts of America when the organization is still discriminating against gay adults?
Within the past week, all of this energy has culminated in the relentless pressure being put on musicians Train and Carly Rae Jepsen by gay bloggers, journalists, and LGBT rights organizations to pull out of their performance duties at the annual Boy Scout's Jamboree.
James was an Eagle Scout and Scoutmaster who was kicked out of the Boy Scouts in 1990 for being openly gay, so I thought it important to get his point of view on Madonna's statements at the GLAAD Media Awards and where we stand as a community in this potentially historic moment.
With the 2000 Supreme Court decision in Boy Scouts of America v. Dale, it would seem that the issue of gays in the Boy Scouts was finally settled. So why did the National Executive Board revisit the policy in 2012 and float a trial balloon in 2013?
Scouting has provided such an impressive forum for young men to come to terms with their sexual identity that one is left to wonder whether the Boy Scouts are in fact an agent of Sodom, promoting the homosexual agenda with greater fervor than a Broadway Cruise to South Beach.
On Jan. 28 the Boy Scouts of America announced that it would consider giving local troops the right to determine if they would allow openly gay members and leaders, a halfway measure reminiscent of the approach that the BSA used when it confronted membership of people of color.
Why, after reaffirming its ban on gay, bisexual and transgender scouts and scout leaders just last year, is the Boy Scouts of America even considering a reversal? Quite simply, its policies have placed it on the endangered organizations list.
The decision to allow openly gay scouts, or at least to allow local councils to allow gay scouts, shouldn't be a hard one. Ultimately, the BSA's own justifications for its anti-gay policy simply don't hold water. Here's a step-by-step breakdown.
After investing my youth in scouting, I was ejected from their ranks and my Eagle Scout badge was revoked because I'd come out as gay at 19 years old. I challenged this decision, and a decade later a divided Supreme Court sided with the Boy Scouts. I always knew it was a Pyrrhic victory.