Boy Scouts right to surrender discriminatory policies
The Kansas City Star
The push and pull of anti-discrimination forces finally is getting the Boy Scouts of America to give up its anti-gay policies.
The Boy Scouts will decide soon whether to accept gays as Scouts and as leaders in the organization, The Associated Press reports.
The U.S. Supreme Court said in 2000 that the Boy Scouts had a right to exclude gays from Scouting units. But that prompted protests that haven’t relented.
The public outrage has been the push causing sponsorships at public schools with nondiscrimination pacts to abandon sponsoring Scouting troops. Another push came from corporations and foundations, which withdrew funding for Scouting.
The pull was from President Barack Obama. He ended the “don’t ask don’t tell” practice in the military that prevented gays from serving openly in the armed forces.
But President Obama also came out in favor of gay marriage and included gays in his inaugural address. The president on Jan. 21, the holiday for the birthday of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., said:
“We, the people, declare today that the most evident of truths – that all of us are created equal – is the star that guides us still; just as it guided our forebears through Seneca Falls, and Selma, and Stonewall; just as it guided all those men and women, sung and unsung, who left footprints along this great Mall, to hear a preacher say that we cannot walk alone; to hear a King proclaim that our individual freedom is inextricably bound to the freedom of every soul on Earth.
“It is now our generation’s task to carry on what those pioneers began. For our journey is not complete until our wives, our mothers, and daughters can earn a living equal to their efforts. Our journey is not complete until our gay brothers and sisters are treated like anyone else under the law – for if we are truly created equal, then surely the love we commit to one another must be equal as well.”
Let’s hope we get to that point — some day soon.