It was only
in 2000 that the BSA won in the US Supreme Court, and one would have thought that BSA's right to continue to discriminate on the grounds of both religious belief and sexual orientation would have been settled. As can be seen below, BSA's declaration that they are a "private religious youth organization," with the constitutional right to freely discriminate on whatever grounds they see fit, has only spawned more legal and other problems for BSA.
Two new additions to the site:
- 4 October 2012 BSA Denies Eagle Scout Award to Gay Youth then Kicks Him Out Ryan Andresen completed all of his requirements for the Eagle Scout Award, including his Eagle Scout service project. He came out to his scoutmaster (Rainier Del Valle) in July this year and he was told it would not be an issue. On Del Valle's word, Ryan completed his service project and presented his completed application to his scoutmaster for
signature earlier this week. Del Valle refused to sign the application and Ryan has since been expelled from the BSA for being gay. So much for the word of a Scoutmaster! For more information on this incident, please check out a more complete review on our blog.
- 18 Sepember 2012 Expose of BSA Cover-Up of Child Molesters For years, the BSA has done everything in their power to prevent the release of records of their "Ineligible Volunteer" files, from becoming public. The Los Angeles Times has reviewed 1,600 BSA files from 1970-1991 and found that 80% of the cases of child abuse reported to them they failed to report to law
enforcement authorities. These files were the result of a 1992 case against the BSA. Hundreds more will soon become widely available. In June, the Oregon Supreme Court ordered the release of 1,247 of the Scouts' confidential files covering two decades beginning in 1965. The files were submitted in a 2010 lawsuit that resulted in a nearly $20-million judgment against the
Scouts (records from the 90s to the present have yet to be released).
Because of the number of media accounts that will be covering this issue, links to articles will be posted on our facebook page, rather than this web site. To keep up to date on this issue, an other BSA-related issues, like our facebook page to be notified of new links.
- 28 August 2012 New facebook Page The Website has created a facebook page to provide for a faster delivery of breaking news. Please visit and like the page to get news items regarding BSA's discrimination policies.
- 24 August 2012 United Way Chapter Pulls Funding from Local Council After last month's "emphatic reaffirmation" of the BSA's discrimination policy regarding sexual orientation, the United Way of the Capital Region met with the local BSA council - New Birth of Freedom - to discuss compliance with the chapter's non
-discrimination policy. After meeting with the council, the council reiterated that it would follow BSA discrimination policy regarding members. The UW chapter, which provided $90,000 in funds to the council last year, announced that future funding will cease, unless the council agrees not to discriminate by January 1, 2013.
New Birth receives funding from several other United Way
organizations, including the United Way of York County, which provided about $166,000 last year. That United Way chapter has said it will review the Boy Scout policy to determine whether there's a conflict. Individual United Way chapters are free to their own policies which are determined by community volunteers.
The United Way of Carlisle and Cumberland County last week announced it will continue funding New Birth of Freedom.
For more information, click here or here.
- 23 August 2012 Cub Scout Pack Publishes Non-Discrimination Policy In contrast to some councils that are purported to not discriminate (Northern Star, Greater New York, Minuteman, etc.), a lonely Cub Scout pack in Marblehead, MA, has adopted a clear and decisive non-discrimination policy:
Policy of acceptance
"Pack 79 recognizes the benefits of scouting for all boys and
their families. We openly reject the national policy put forth by Boy Scouts of America barring gay boys from membership and gay or lesbian adults from serving as leaders. We believe that Scouting builds character and enforces important values including citizenship, compassion, cooperation, courage, faith, health and fitness, honesty, perseverance, positive attitude, resourcefulness, respect, responsibility, tolerance and acceptance. As an organization, Pack 79 will provide membership
to all boys and parents in the Marblehead community without regard to sexual orientation."
It is unclear if the Pack's defiance of the BSA's discrimination policy will result in the revocation of their unit charter, but it is another indication that not all within the BSA approve of blatant discrimination. For more information, click here and herewww.wickedlocal.com/marblehead/newsnow/x1789229318/LETTER-Local-Scouts-reject-policy#axzz24NbPCB1K.
- 22 August 2012 Another Council Lies to the UW to Get Funds While some UW chapters look the other way when the BSA asks for money, some require local councils to sign non-discrimination statements. These statements invariably contain assertions that the grant recipient (eg: a BSA council) does not discriminate on the basis of religious belief or sexual orientation. As is well known, the BSA discriminates on BOTH these categories. This
has not stopped some councils from lying on the forms to get money.
A recent article reports that Steven Smith, scout executive for the Connecticut Rivers Council, has been signing declarations "in order to get funds from the United Way of Central and Northeastern Connecticut that it doesn't discriminate in any way
against homosexuals or anyone else." While Smith stated that "We have leaders that are gay," he also warned that "he would back the dismissal of anyone, gay or straight, who tries to use the Boy Scouts to push a sexual agenda. "We don't talk about sex in general," Smith explains."
Of course, this basically means that if a the local media interviewed a scout/scouter who mentioned that they were non
-heterosexual, than Smith would considered that statement to be "pushing a sexual agenda," and in compliance with BSA national policy, revoke their membership. Thus, the local council has been lying for years that it does not discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation.
- 20 August 2012 BSA Expels Gay Father and Scout Leader A
In opposition to the wishes of a chartering organization (this time the Roman Catholic Church -- parish and diocese), the Lincoln Heritage council expelled Greg Bourke from the BSA. Bourke became a scout leaders when the leader of his son's pack left and he was asked to take over. An openly gay man, who has been with his partner for 30 years and is raising their two children, was deemed not to be a proper "role model" for boy scouts. For more information, click here.
- 17 August 2012 United Ways in a Quandary A recent article in Nonprofit Quarterly, outlines the problems facing UW chapters across the country regarding the BSA's discrimination policies. For more information, click here.
- 16 August 2012 BSA Demanding Special Rights The BSA is wanting the West Virginia constitution amended so that they can not pay any property taxes on their Summit Bechtel Family
National Reserve, if they leased out any part of the property to for-profit enterprises.
Essentially, WV constitution requires that non-profits can retain their exemption from property taxes, as long as they don't start renting out the property to for-profit organizations and making a profit on the rent. The BSA wants to be able to rent out any part of the new camp, including an 80,000-seat amphitheater, to outside groups like concert promoters and make money.
When it was put forth as a proposal in the last legislative session teachers unions wanted to know whether the measure would lead to a decrease in property tax revenues that fund schools. The state's Roman Catholic diocese also questioned the Boy Scouts proposal. At the time, the Senate unanimously advanced the Boy Scouts' resolution, but the measure died in a House committee. For more information, click here and here.
- 15 August 2012 UW Chapter Endorse Discrimination The Carlisle & Cumberland County United Way chapter has voted to continue to fund the BSA's New Birth of Freedom council. Several
other UW chapters which fund the New Birth of Freedom council are in the process of reevaluating their decision to continue funding discriminatory groups. For more information, click here.
- 13 August 2012 Town Considers Banning Discriminatory BSA from Facilities Another fallout from the BSA's "emphatic reaffirmation" last month of its discrimination policies is the reevaluation of governmental involvement and support for the BSA. In West Newport, MA, a council member has introduced legislation that would require any groups using city facilities to be non-discriminatory. Something that the BSA has repeatedly stated it is NOT. For more information, click here.
- 12 August 2012 Another BSA Council Tries to say it does not Discriminate In a recent article, Vermont's Green Mountain
council attempts to put forth a "non-discrimination" policy that is somehow different from the BSA's discrimination policy. Their "policy" is as follows: "The Green Mountain Council, Boy Scouts of America, does not inquire into the sexual orientation of existing or prospective members, youth or adult." But, openly LGBT youth/adults need not apply, and any closeted LGBT youth/adults run the risk of a third party disclosing their sexual
orientation to the council to get them expelled from scouting -- like what happened to Jennifer Tyrell.
This council's policy of DADT is EXACTLY like the BSA's current policy, yet, the media seems to be inept when they report on these "non-discrimination" policies. They continually state that these councils deviate from BSA policy and openly accept LGBT persons. Yet, the media never call their bluff by asking for the name of an LGBT scouter in their council to
- 11 August 2012 BSA Strangling Free Speech Many BSA apologists trumpet "free speach" (when they have no idea what it actually means) when discussing the BSA's discrimination. Well, the BSA has no problem with telling not only current, but former employees to "shut up!"
On August 2, BSA retirees received a letter from the BSA's National Director, The Marketing Group - Stephen Medlicott. The letter urged retirees across the country not to talk to reporters who might call them for interviews on a range of issues surrounding pedophilia in scouting.
"We have learned that some BSA retirees and employees have been contacted by reporters asking for comment on
councils where they have worked in the past. Should you receive such a request from a reporter or media representative, please do not accept the interview request or comment. Refer them to the BSA Public Relations Office."
As was noted in the report of this letter, "this strategy can be intimidating to employees and retirees, whose financial well being is tied to the BSA. The implied threat is that anyone who
exercises his free speech rights under the First Amendment risks repercussions should his name or picture appear in stories about controversial issues. We obtained the Medlicott letter from a retiree who wishes to remain anonymous but who obviously resents the BSA's attempt to muzzle its own people." For more information, click here.
- 9 August 2012 President Obama, BSA's Honorary President, Comes Out Against BSA's Discrimination Days after the 2012 Republican presidential candidate - Mitt Romney - reaffirmed his 1994 stance against the BSA's discrimination policies, President Obama also deplored the BSA's discrimination.
"The President believes the Boy Scouts is a valuable organization that has helped educate and build character in American boys for more than a century. He also opposes discrimination in all forms, and as such opposes this policy that discriminates on basis of sexual orientation." For more information, click here.
- 6 August 2012 Mitt Romney Against BSA's Discrimination In a surprising move, the presumptive GOP presidential candidate has NOT flipped flopped on a 1994 senatorial campaign statement. In 1994, he stated: "I feel that all people should be able to participate in the Boy Scouts regardless of their sexual orientation." His 2012 presidential campaign reaffirmed Romney's position remained the same.
- 3 August 2012 Baltimore is Another Council that attempts to Distort the Truth A recent article has a Baltimore Area council representative claiming that openly gay youth are allowed to be members, that LGBT members are only expelled if they discusses their "sexuality with another person's child," and that local councils can change BSA membership policies. They even have a so-called "Policy Statement on Tolerance," which of course fails to state that membership shall not be denied because of a person's sexual orientation. If only the BSA would really stop discriminating, then these "inclusive" policies will really mean what they say.
- 2 August 2012 Morally Straight Project: 1 Adam Foster, an Eagle Scout and recent graduate from University California Santa Cruz with a degree in Film and Digital Media Production, has created short documentary for his senior exit requirement. According to an e-mail from Adam, he stated:" He made many lifelong friends in scouting who are gay. It hurt me deeply to see these friends struggle to gain acceptance from an
organization that they credit in part for making them the men they are today. In spring 2012, I had 10 weeks to create a short documentary for my senior exit requirement. My student documentary is an examination of the exclusion of gay men from the Boy Scouts of America, as well as the alienation and fear that the exclusionary policy creates in its highest ranked scouts."
Adam intends to use the project to "keep up with the current
dialogue surrounding the ban of gays from the Boy Scouts by creating webisodes to be posted a few times a month of different interviews and stories I collect." To view his first video, click here.
- 2 August 2012 Badge of Bigotry A great article about a young
Eagle Scout who attended Camp Winton earlier this summer and found Tim Griffin to be a really great counselor. …He was a funny, really outgoing guy." He was "really shocked" to return home and find out that the BSA had fired Griffin from camp for being gay. For more information, click here.
- 2 August 2012 State Senator Declines BSA Award New Jersey state senator Raymond Lesniak turned down an honorary award from the Patriots Path Council because of the BSA's anti-LGBT discrimination policies. For more information, click here.
- 2 August 2012 Glen Ridge Board of Education reconsiders BSA Relationship A Glen Ridge, NJ resident has asked the school baord to re-consider allowing Boy Scouts to meet on school property, after the Boy Scouts of America upheld a controversial, long-standing ban on permitting gays to join. For more information, click here. This might be problematic, as the BSA had their anti-gay friends in Congress pass a bill to grant them special rights -- "Boy Scouts Equal Access Act."
- 31 July 2012 Previous Eagle Scouts Who Returned their Medals A page demonstrating that the current frenzy of Eagle Scouts returning their medals to the BSA is sadly not original. Twelve years ago, in the wake of the Dale decision, many Eagle Scouts made the decision to publicly oppose the BSA's discrimination by surrendering their Eagle Scout Award medals. For more information, click here.
- 30 July 2012 Lost Trail A rebuttal to the recent op-ed by the BSA defending their policies has been posted to the blog.
30 July 2012 BSA Conscientious Objectors A post on the new web site blog offering suggestions on actions current scouts/scouters/parents can take to make their opposition to the BSA's discriminatory policies known is now published.
- 30 July 2012 BSA CSE & President Defend Policies An op-ed penned by the BSA's CSE and President have been published in several papers. To view it, click here.
- 30 July 2012 New Site Feature - Blog The Webmaster will be taking his family on a summer vacation for the next couple of weeks, before the kids head back to school. Because of the recent interest in the BSA's policies, a blog has been created to allow the site to be updated while the webmaster is away from his home computer. The blog will allow for visitors to post their comments, but all comments will be embargoed subject for
approval, before being published.
- 29 July 2012 A Compilation of Recent Articles and LTEs A compilation of links to news articles and letters to the editor have been posted on this web site. These indicate that there is very
little public supporth for the BSA's continued practice of discrimination.
- 27 July 2012 Should Eagle Scouts Mail Their Awards to BSA National? An article that addresses this question is posted on this web site.
- 27 July 2012 BSA PR Trouble: Local Councils Caught Lying As mentioned earlier, the Northern Star Council claims that it was "inclusive" and the press and even HRC thought that meant they permitted openly gay youth to be members. WRONG! In a recent Wall Street Journal article, Deron Smith, BSA's spokesman said,
"Scouting has one policy that applies to all troops and councils. Any time we're aware of any inconsistency in the administration of a Scouting policy we work with the local council to reiterate the policy and ensure its compliance with the local leaders.
Astoundingly, in the article, the Boston council's spokesman had the gall to state that the council had "adopted a nondiscrimination policy 10 years ago that includes sexual
orientation. . . [but that] he didn't know of any gay or lesbian leaders or scout members in the council." Of course there are no openly gay youth in the council because the BSA threatened to revoke their charter if they kept the policy. Click here for more information.
Again, Deron Smith " said he had no information about the Boston group's practice."
As to the Northern Star Council, Smith said that the national council is "currently is working with the Northern Star Council to "clarify" its policy."
It seems that a lot of councils that have in the past told donors that they didn't discriminate are being shown to have misled the public. If they really had a non-discrimination policy in effect, all they had to do was to point a reporter to an openly
gay youth/adult for an interview. So far, that has not happened!
- 27 July 2012 BSA PR Trouble: UW Chapter Looking At Local Council Funding All UW chapters have non-discrimination policies (if an organization wishes to get money, it has to serve the entire community) that include religious belief and many
include sexual orientation. Well, the BSA created LFL as a blind to allow local councils to continue to receive UW funding, but still retain its discriminatory policies in its "traditional membership program." When a council applies for UW money, it has to certify in writing that it is abiding by the UW non-discrimination policies. Since truthfulness is not a BSA value, they sign and get the money, while violating the policy.
The recent "emphatic reaffirmation" of the BSA's discrimination policies is causing some UW chapters to take another look at the councils they fund. For more information, click here.
- 26 July 2012 BSA's Gay Ban in Opposition to Jewish Values According to an article in the Jewish Daily Forward, "it may seem like the Boy Scouts of America may be moving further than ever from Jewish values, as evidenced by the organization's reaffirmation of its long-standing ban on allowing openly gay
men and boys to serve as scouts or scoutmasters.
The Boy Scouts' policy puts it at odds with most Jewish opinion. It also places it outside the mainstream: the Girl Scouts, Boys and Girls Clubs, 4-H clubs, and even the US Military have done away with such discriminatory edicts. In 2001, following a New Jersey Supreme Court's decision to uphold the Boy Scouts' right to refuse membership to gays, the Joint Commission on Social Action of the Reform movement issued a
memorandum urging its congregations to ask their sponsored troops to rewrite their charters, or to withdraw financial support entirely, calling the ban "incompatible with our consistent belief that every individual – regardless of his or her sexual orientation – is created in the image of God and is deserving of equal treatment."
"From a religious perspective, we stand for the notion that
all people are equally children of God," explained Rabbi Daniel F. Polish, the commission's director. "So if you have a religious movement sponsoring a group with a diametrically opposed set of values, it sets up a terrible conflict."
At that time 11 years ago, 7,187 members in 277 Boy Scout troops, packs, and crews were sponsored by Jewish organizations. In 2010, the numbers had dwindled to 4,060 scouts in 174 Jewish-sponsored units."
- 26 July 2012 BSA Supports Anti-Gay Chick-fil-A Founder In 2007, the BSA awarded its highest adult honor -- the Silver Buffalo -- to Chick-fil-A founder, Samuel Truett Cathy. According to sources, he is very supportive and influential in Scouting in
the state of Georgia. Recently, Chick-fil-A has been in the news for making public its anti-LGBT position in its business practices and in funding anti-LGBT organizations.
- 26 July 2012 Two more Boy Scout Staff Quit over Firing of Gay Eagle Scout According to FOX40, two more staff members -
- a total of 12 staff members out of a total of 30 -- have quit in protest over the firing of a gay Eagle Scout at a summer camp in the Golden Empire council. For more information, click here.
- 25 July 2012 Mass Council "reviewing" National Anti-Gay Ban Larry Bystran, the scout executive for the Western Massachusetts Council said the council will form an ad hoc committee to review the national policy on excluding gay Scouts and leaders.
When asked whether the national policy of excluding gay members has discouraged people from joining local Scout troops, Bystran said, "I would say yes to that. We want to make
people aware of the great work that Scouting does with kids."
In the coming weeks, the council's ad hoc committee will review the national membership policy "more fully," Bystran said.
"The national press release says there is no further action on this," he said. "That's probably a 'for now' kind of thing."
It is great to see that there is NOT unanimous support within the scouting community over its discrimination, unfortunately, until the BSA abolishes its membership policies, all councils and units are required to enforce ALL of the BSA's membership policies. Those that do not do so, subject themselves to having their council or unit charter revoked by the BSA. For more information, click here.
- 25 July 2012 1/3 of Camp Staff Quit after BSA Expels Gay Scout Tim Griffin, a 22-year-old Eagle Scout, was fired on July 20, 2012, after eight years on the seasonal staff at Camp
Winton in Amador County, CA (Golden Empire Council), for being gay. Ten out of the 30 staff members of the camp, walked out the next day, in response to the firing of a gay staff member, sparking tension over the Boy Scouts of America's anti-gay policy.
"It was absolutely about his sexual orientation, no question about it," said Graham Littlejohn, an Eagle Scout and the third-ranking staff member at camp until he joined Saturday's walkout.
The in-camp tension over the firing of Griffin - the longest tenured staff member - peaked at the Friday night campfire when the camp program director, the No. 2 position, read an impassioned speech about tolerance. He resigned in the morning along with the other staff members.
For more information, click here and here.
- 25 July 2012 Eagle Scout Return Eagle Awards in Protest of BSA's policies Since the BSA's recent emphatic reaffirmation of
its anti-LGBT policy, many Eagle Scouts have sought to protest the organization's policies by returning their hard-earned Eagle Scout Awards.
For just a few reports on this situation, click here, here, here and here.
- 24 July 2012 Central American Scouting Associations OK with Gay Scouts According to a wire agency ACAN-EFE, the scouting
associations of Honduras, Costa Rica, El Salvador and Nicaragua indicated that they will not exclude gays from its ranks. Only Panama - a US created country from Columbia -- reaffirmed their ban against gay youth. For more information, click here and here.
- 23 July 2012 Panmanian Scouting Associations Practices Reparative Therapy Not only does the Panamanian Scouting Association ban LGBT youth from membership, it bans any person who "supports" LGBT individuals, and if a young scout is thought to be gay. the "Scouts in Panama actively try to reverse the homosexual orientation of youth." For more information, click here.
- 23 July 2012 Local Troop Defies BSA's anti-LGBT Policy Scoutmaster Peter Crowley of troop 500 in Amhearst, MA, has long disagreed with the BSA's discrimination policies. When the
BSA "emphatically reaffirmed" its anti-LGBT policy, he and a large portion of his Amherst troop's parents into action. He and 15 other troop leaders penned a letter to the Gazette July 20, calling the BSA's policy "discriminatory" and "at odds with our interpretation of the Scout Oath and Law."
"We want to reassure you, our friends, neighbors and colleagues, that local Boy Scouts Troop 500 in Amherst does not
support BSA's policy," the letter states. "Troop 500 invites the participation of all interested 11-to-17-year-old boys and their parents or guardians without regard to sexual orientation."
Whether troop 500 will have its charter revoked, as other troops who've publicly defied the BSA's policy, is unknown at this time. For more information, click here.
- 22 July 2012 BSA "thinks" about changing its policies? At the BSA's 2011 annual Top Hands Conference for professional
Scouters, the Chief Scout Executive, Bob Mazzuca, told the audience that the BSA considers Exploring (which is a part of the BSA's LFL program) as part of the BSA's traditional membership programs. The interesting thing here is that Exploring does not discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation or religious belief, but all of the BSA's traditional membership programs (Cub
Scouting, Boy Scouting Venture Scouting, etc.) do discriminate. Mazzuca says that "If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck and walks like a duck – it's probably a duck." Does this mean that the BSA is testing the waters of adopting an across the board anti-discrimination policy, or is it just another scheme to inflate its membership numbers within its tanking traditional membership programs?
- 22 July 2012 Major League Soccer drops the BSA Major League Soccer said Friday that it will no longer partner with the BSA. MLS did not give a specific reason for the end of the partnership, which had lasted only since January. But on Wednesday, the BSA announced that it had reaffirmed its policy
to exclude "open or avowed homosexuals" from membership in the organization. For more information, click here.
- 22 July 2012 GOP Gubernatorial Candidate Diagrees with BSA's Policies
A spokesman for Republican Washington state gubernatorial candidate Rob McKenna said that the attorney general, who is also an Eagle Scout, disagrees with the BSA's recent reaffirmation of its national policy to exclude gays from its ranks. McKenna, who currently serves on the BSA's Chief Seattle Council, has had some initial conversations with other BSA volunteers in the state on how "at least locally, the leaders out here could encourage the national organization to reconsider
the national policy," said campaign spokesman Charles McCray. For more information, click here.
- July 2012 New York Times Debate The NY Times has invited
various persons to give their view on the BSA's discrimination policies. Included writers are: James Dale, Jay Mechling, Stephen Cozza, Aaron Belkin, Cathy Tisdale, Ilya Shapiro, and the BSA's CSE, Bob Mazzuca. Click here to read their views.
- July 2012 UK Scout Association records "It Gets Better" video The Chief Commissioner of UK Scout Association, Wayne Bulpitt, has joined Stonewall's It Gets Better… Today campaign, recording his own video of encouraging words to gay teens. "In scouting we believe all young people, irrespective of their sexuality, gender, race, creed, or background, have an equal opportunity to develop and to be themselves," said Bulpitt.
- July 2012 Another Council "claims" to be Inclusive! History tends to repeat itself. With the BSA prominently proclaiming their discriminatory ban, there was bound to be at least one local council attempt to distance themselves. This time, it is the Northern Star council in St. Paul-Minneapolis. In a newspaper article, the paper states that the council said "that gays and
lesbians remain welcome in its troops," although, a close reading of the article reveals that the reporter never quotes any BSA employee saying that. The council talks about being inclusive and point to an "inclusive statement," but that statement never says that they will allow gay youth or adults to be members. Another BSA council trying to be "inclusive," while still
discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation and religious belief.
- July 2012 Mother Delivers 300,000 Petition to BSA HQ Ohio mother and former Den Leader Jennifer Tyrrell delivered more than 300,000 petition signatures and met with BSA officials at the national council's offices in Irving, TX. The petitions called for the BSA to end its discrimination against gay youth and LGBT
leaders. This event had been publicized well in advance and on the day Tyrrell delivered her petitions was the same day that the BSA revealed that a secret committee had been discussing this issue for two years. For more information, click here.
- July 2012 BSA collaborates with Certified Hate Group According to the American Family Association (a known hate group), the BSA talked with Bryan Fischer of the AFA who said that "the
head of the Boy Scouts called me," and claimed that he promised Fischer, "We're not going change our standards" — meaning, they are not going to let gays into the Boy Scouts. Fischer also claims the head of the BSA admitted they were "not doing a poll, and we're not thinking about changing the policy." In other words, the BSA not only lied in their press release stating that there was "confidential two-year review," but that they have no problem associated themselves with Fischer, who
once said that "Homosexuality gave us Adolf Hitler."
- July 2012 The BSA reaffirms its discrimination and proves to be untrustworthy The BSA has stated that an 11-member
special committee, formed discreetly by top Scout leaders in 2010, came to the conclusion that the BSA's discrimination policy "is absolutely the best policy" for the 112-year-old organization. Why this was never mention in the previous months when this issue was in the news and why the names of those on the committee are not being disclosed, tend to argue that the BSA is lying. A committee was never formed two years ago,
otherwise, where is the report showing the two years worth of work and polling they did to reach their conclusion?
- July 2012 BSA expels another Eagle Scout Eric Jones was a member of the Boys Scouts of America for nearly 10 years and was serving as a counselor at a summer camp in Missouri, when
sat down with the camp director to tell him that he was gay. He was promptly fired and informed he was expelled from the BSA.
- July 2012 LDS & BSA in Apparent Conflict over Same-Sex Attraction This June, the BSA adopted the term "same-sex attraction" (SSA) when it issued its "clarification" of its discriminatory policies. The BSA's policy is that anyone with SSA is ineligible to be a member (youth or adult), while the LDS's policy is that those with SSA (as long as they live lives of chastity) are allowed to be full members, including holding positions within BSA units chartered by the LDS. For more information, click here.
- June 2012 BSA Board members feel the HEAT Corporate executives have long been stalwart members of the BSA's national executive board. Today's society is getting more resistant to companies that endorse any form of discrimination.
That is why two BSA board members have been challenged for leading companies that embrace diversity, while being a part of an organization that does not. In the next few years, it will be more difficult for company executives to be associated with the BSA because that association will reflect negatively upon their company and their customers will cease to use their products/services. For more information, click here.
- June 2012 Oregon Court order BSA to release Sexual Abuse Files For decades, the BSA has refused to say what is in their so-called "Ineligible Files." Now, a court has ordered the BSA to
release thousands of pages of documents detailing accusations and investigations of sexual abuse or other improprieties by Boy Scout leaders around the nation from the mid-1960s into the 1980s. The BSA has consistently been unwilling to require employees and volunteers to contact legal authorities whenever they are notified of any potential child abuse. For some reason, the BSA asserts that the publication of this information will
"have a chilling effect on the reporting of abuse." Of course, they failed to explain how this would be. For more information, click here.
- June 2012 BSA Adopts LDS & Ex-Gay Language For the first
time EVER, the BSA has used the term "same-sex attraction" (SSA) in their official press release, rather than gay, LGBT, homosexual, homosexuality, etc. The term SSA is strongly associated with the LDS and to the ex-gay/reparative therapy movement. Even when the Tyrell story broke, the BSA never used this term, only during/after the BSA's annual meeting - a stark change.
While some have thought that the acceptance of the petition delivered to the BSA by Wahls and the introduction of a resolution (that will be forwarded to a committee controlled by the religious organizations who oppose LGBT persons and thus doomed) as a positive, the use of this term - SSA - indicates the complete opposite. The use of this term is a clear signal that the BSA is hardening its position and adopting the notion that
homosexuality is a choice. A position that the major "ex-gay" group in the USA -- Exodus International -- has recently acknowledged, A new and disheartening direction that the BSA has chosen to take.
- June 2012 BSA "Clarifies" Discrimination Policies Following news reports that indicated that the BSA was actually seriously considering a review of their discrimination policies, the BSA issued a "clarification" that reasserted that the BSA continues to discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation and religious belief. They asserted that they are NOT in any way shape or form "considering changing their anti-gay policies."
- May 2012 Eagle Scout delivers Petition to BSA Annual Meeting Zach Wahls, delivered to the BSA a petition that
contained 284,000 signatures urging that the BSA reconsider its discriminatory membership policies. For more information, click here.
- May 2012 California Assembly Rejects Resolution Commemorating BSA Assemblyman Mike Morrell, R-Rancho
Cucamonga wanted to honor the BSA and commemorate the organization's 102nd anniversary. Democrats demanded Morrell's resolution include wording that urges the BSA to cease discriminating against gay youth on the basis of sexual orientation. The bill was unable to garner enough votes to pass. For more information, click here.
- April 2012 BSA Expels Lesbian Mother The BSA expelled Jennifer Tyrell, a 32-year-old Bridgeport (OH) mother of four, after she raised questions about her Cub Pack's finances. In spite of serving for a year as a Den Leader (with everyone knowing she was a lesbian) for her 7-year-old son, The BSA summarily revoked her membership. She withdrew her son from
the BSA. For more information click here.
- October 2011 School Board Rejects BSA's Discrimination The Pinellas County School Board voted to reject a $54,838 grant for
Learning for Life, a program run by the BSA on grounds the organization discriminates against gay youth. Board member Linda Lerner has been objecting to the grant for 11 years, saying that the district should not endorse a group that has a policy denying gays. When she pulled the item for the 11th time Tuesday, she read from a Boy Scout statement against homosexuality requiring that a scout be "morally straight" and "clean in word and deed." For more information, click here.
- April 2011 UK Boy Scouts take on Sex Education The U.K. Scout Association launched a new, optional program of sex education classes for scouts called "My Body, My Choice."
Designed for scouts aged 14 to 18, the classes are aimed at bringing down the nation's high rates of sexually transmitted diseases and teen pregnancy.
- January 2012 BSA Traditional Members Declines Again for 2011. This is the 13th straight year of membership reduction since 1997. For more information, click here.
- November 2010 Mother of Scout challenges the notion that the BSA supports "Family Values." The web site received an e-mail from the mother of a Boy Scout and wife of a volunteer Scout leader. Her direct experience with the BSA has convinced her that the BSA does "not really care about family values, as I
have realized too late." For her story, click here.
- October 2010 Bullying of LGBTQ Youth leads to Suicide. This web site would be seriously remiss if it failed to report on the recent spate of suicides of LGBTQ youth. To date, the public has been informed of the suicide of at least seven youth within the
last five weeks across this country. Of course, these are the ones that have been reported. This number does not include those that never make the papers, or the suicide victim never lets his/her family know the reason, or the family and community covers up the real reason for the suicide. For more information, click here.
- October 2010
BSA Traditional Members Declines Again for 2009. This is the 12th straight year of membership reduction since 1997. For more information, click here.
- October 2010 Gay Father banned from wearing BSA uniform short. The son of an openly gay father joined a Cub Scout Pack
and the Pack asked the father to help out. He did. When the Pack gave him a scout shirt to wear, no one saw a problem, as he was not registered. Some adults complained to the council and because of the BSA's discrimination policy, he was asked not to wear the uniform shirt, but insisted that the Pack still wanted him to chair their Popcorn fundraising program. Because of this experience, the father and son have left the unit and Scouting. For more information, click here.
- October 2010 Mormon Parents told could not be Pack leaders because they are not Christian. The BSA has never had a problem condoning discrimination, whether it came in the form of race, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or religious belief.
Recently, a BSA Pack expelled from its rolls two adult leaders (who happened to be parents of scouts in the unit), because the chartering organization does not think that Mormons are Christians. It seems one of the condition of membership and adult leadership in the unit is being a Christian and this evangelical Christian church does not think that Mormons are Christian. The BSA wholeheartedly support such discrimination. For more information, click here.
- August 2010 BSA Upset at President Obama for Not Going to Jamboree and Scouts Boo President's Videocast. This Summer, the anti-Obama folks (which now seems to include the once nonpartisan BSA) have decried the President for not attending the National Jamboree. Many claim that "every" President has
done so. Of course, those that state this as a fact are lying. Let's run through the Jamborees:
1937 (FDR (D), attended);
1950 (Truman (D), attended);
1953 (Eisenhower (R), no show);
1957 (Eisenhower (R), no show);
1960 (Eisenhower (R), no show);
1964 (LBJ (D), attended);
1969 (Nixon (R), no show);
1973 (Nixon (R), no show);
1977 (Carter (D), no show);
1981 (Reagan (R), no show);
1985 (Reagan (R), no show);
1989 (GHWB (R), attended);
1993 (Clinton (D), no show);
1997 (Clinton (D), attended);
2001 (GWB (R), no show);
2005 (GWH (R), attended); and,
2010 (Obama (D), no show).
Of the 17 National Jamborees, only SIX presidents have attended a National Jamboree - interestingly, only two of the six presidents were Republicans. Given the rationale being used by some BSA supporters , I guess this means that the GOP does not look with favor on the BSA, at least the Democratic
Presidents have shown more support for the BSA.
The politicization of the BSA since the 1980s was clearly evident when a video surfaced on YouTube showing Boy Scouts booing during the videocast of President Obama's speech to them. But, given the incivility being taught to BSA members today, what can one expect.
- July 2010 BSA wins against Philadelphia, but recent SCOTUS ruling might overturn verdict. Ever since the Dale case, the BSA has increasingly demanded the special rights it was given when it was an organization open to all boys. These special rights were usually in the form of lucrative financial agreements that were not available to any other private religious your
organization. When the City of Philadelphia told the BSA it had to comply with its nondiscrimination laws in order to remain on city-owned property rent-free, they sued the city. A federal jury recently partly sided with the BSA, but 5 days after their decision the US Supreme Court handed down a ruling that the city is claiming overturns the verdict. Click here for more information.
- July 2010 BSA ordered to pay $18.5 million for sexual abuse and FINALLY requires YPT for ALL volunteers. When the BSA introduced the Youth Protection Training (YPT) program in 1991, I soon learned in my TTT program for YPT that it would be mandatory for ALL volunteer leaders. Apparently, I've been misled for years by the BSA -- imagine that! It seems that not
only has the BSA not required this training, but has been resisting it for years. It seems that paying out money is the only motivation that means anything for the BSA. For more information, click here.
- March 2010 Scout Official calls for the Execution of Gay
Scouts and Scout Leaders. David Bahati, the Chairman of the Uganda Scouts Association (a member of the WOSM), introduced a bill in the Ugandan Parliament calling for the death penalty for any and all homosexuals. This would of course include children who happen to be members of the Scouting community. In spite of objections to the WOSM of the endorsement of such a measure by the Uganda Scouts Association, the WOSM has taken no position on this blatant violation of human rights, not
to mention that it is effect a legalization of genocide, and its affiliation with the Scouting Movement. For more information, click here.
- February 2010 Letter to the Editor decries religious extremism in the new BSA. A former scout in his 70's reflects
on the religious diversity and acceptance present in scouting during his experience growing up in the 1940s. He states that he still loves "the Boy Scouts of America, but wish they would either change their exclusionary policies or drop the "America" from their name. Don't hijack the self-evident truths of our nation, too!" To read the complete article, click here.
- January 2010 In Response to the BSA's action against two Mothers, Members of Congress write letter. A letter from 26 Congresspersons to the BSA decried the exclusion of two mothers from helping out their son's Cub Pack, simply because they happen to be gay. Click here to read the letter.
- December 2009 Documents surface that state that Baden-Powell ordered the execution of a POW. Papers relating to the Second Matabele War in 1896 say Baden-Powell, then a Colonel in the British Army, ordered the shooting of an African chief. The chief, Uwini, had been promised his life would be spared if he surrendered. For more information, click here.
- December 2009 Scout Officials rejects Lesbian Mothers. A district executive told the mothers of a Cub Scout that the BSA "wouldn't want you pushing your lifestyle on the boys." For more information, click here.
- November 2009 Los Angeles cuts ties with BSA! In spite of total fabrication on the part of the BSA that its Learning for Life -- a wholly owned and operated subsidiary, of the BSA -- "does not take funds from the Boy Scouts," the LA Police Commission voted to sever relations with the BSA. For more information, click here.
- September 2009 Middle School Children Coming Out as GAY! The New York Times has published an in-depth article about the increasing number of middle-school aged children coming out to their parents, family and friends. The author of the article, spoke
to NPR about his reporting.
What does this have to do with the BSA? While the first Scouts to be publicly kicked out of the BSA for being gay were two high school aged Scouts (aged 16 and 17) in 1978, society has progressed since that time. In the future, the BSA will be faced with Scouts who have been members since the 1st grade coming out at 12, 13, or 14 years of age. While such expulsions will be greeted with joy by the Religious Right, the Scouts'
family and friends will not. Already membership has been dropping because of this policy. Current and prospective members and parents will not wish to join when they learn of how the BSA treated their 12-year-old nephew, neighbor, or school mate. At least one religious chartered partner is talking about making sure that such 12-year-olds are expelled. What will the BSA do in
response to society's evolution?
- June 2009 An excellent book that discusses the harmful impact the Dale decision has on the US's anti-discrimination laws has recently been released. For more information on Right to Discriminate?: How the Case of Boy Scouts of America V. James Dale Warped the Law of Free Association, click here!
- May 2009 Participants in the BSA's Learning for Life program has declined by a precipitous 25% since 2007! As usual, the BSA has been silent on the cause for this steep drop-off. Two possible explanations are that: 1) the BSA is adjusting for previously inflated membership numbers, or 2) schools have
decided that they don't need the program the BSA sells them. In today's tough economic conditions, look for another steep decline in Learning for Life revenues to the BSA. For more information, click here.
- May 2009 BSA Membership has declined again in 2008. This is the 11th straight year of membership reduction since 1997.
For more information, click here.
- July 2008 The Boy Scouts of America has endorsed California's Proposition 8, which would overturn the California Supreme Court's decision that same-sex couples are entitled to the same equal rights as opposite-sex couples when it comes to marriage. On the California Secretary of State's web site, a Rebuttal to Argument Against Proposition 8 is available to interested voters. The Rebuttal was written and signed in part by Robert Bolingbroke, who executed the government document as the Commissioner for the San Diego-Imperial Council of the Boy
Scouts of America and on behalf of the Boy Scouts of America. The BSA's decision to become involved in a political matter not only calls into question their commitment to adhere to there own by-laws which prohibit such actions, but risks their tax-exempt status.
- June 2008 BSA Membership declined again in 2007. Since 1997, the BSA has lost (768,205 members!. For more
information, click here.
- June 2008 BSA looks for permanent Jamboree home for 2013 Jamboree and beyond. Because the BSA has come out as a private religious organization, it can no longer receive federal support in hosting its quadrennial national event. A federal court ruled in the Winkler case, that the millions of dollars in direct and
indirect support the BSA received from the federal government for the Jamboree was unconstitutional.
- June 2008 The 9th Circuit Court of Appeal has requested the California Supreme Court to certify several questions regarding the Barnes-Wallace v. Boy Scouts of America case. The order can be viewed here and more information on this case is available here.
- May 2008 Cradle of Liberty Council (Philadelphia) has sued the City of Philadelphia in federal court to block the city's May 31 deadline for the scouts to open membership to gays and atheists, or vacate their historic 1928 headquarters off Logan Square. Click here for more information.
- February 2008 LA Urged To Cut Ties With Boy Scouts Affiliate
A group that administers youth programs for the Los Angeles Police and Fire Departments is little more than a shill organization for the Boy Scouts of America and should be dropped the city has been told.
In a letter to Angeles City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo, Lambda Legal says that the city honor needs to honor its own nondiscrimination policies and cut ties with Learning for Life.
The Police and Fire Department have contracted with "Learning for Life" for about 45 years to run the youth programs but the relationship has recently been questioned by the Police Commission.
Learning for Life is a national program that provides career education for youth. While its mission statement says LFL does not discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation or religion, it is essentially an arm of Boy Scouts of America, which does.
"Only a tissue-thin layer of corporate formality, if even that, separates Learning for Life from the Boy Scouts," said Brian Chase, Senior Staff Attorney for Lambda Legal.
"The organizations share offices, intermingle finances, and share directors and personnel," said Chase.
"This is an attempt by BSA to skirt anti-discrimination policies of Los Angeles and other cities by setting up a not-so-separate corporate entity."
In 2000, BSA fought Lambda Legal all the way to the United States Supreme Court in Boy Scouts of America v. Dale.
The court ruled that as a private organization the BSA could continue its policies barring gays, lesbians, agnostics and atheists.
But in its letter this week to Delgadillo, Lamdba reminds the city attorney that the Los Angeles City Code reads that anyone contracting with the city must agree "not to discriminate in his employment practices... against any employee or applicant for
employment" due to religion or sexual orientation, among other bases.
The letter argues that any city affiliation with Learning for Life is illegal, and that the LAPD should sever all ties with the program, and to develop its cadet program in a way that rejects discrimination and is more consistent with city codes.
Delgadillo has not responded to the Lambda letter and the issue remains before the Police Commission.
- December 2007 A review of Hans Zeiger's book "Get Off My Honor: The Assault on the Boy Scouts of America" was published several months ago by the Pierce Law Review. Click here to read it.
- November 2007 BSA prepared a coup against World Scouting in Pattaya
BSA have launched a huge campaign within World Scouting in order to reduce the impact of the democratic bodies of the World Organization of the Scout Movement (WOSM). The real threat comes against the World Scout Committee, executive body of WOSM, composed of 12 members elected by the World
Scout Conference. By doing so, BSA are forgetting about the democratic traditions of World Scouting and the democratic fundamental principles of the movement. This campaign aims at getting the dismissal of Dr. Eduardo Missoni, the current Secretary General of WOSM who started a great institutional reform, including governance, education programs and branding.
This destructive campaign, organized by International
Commissioner Wayne Perry (co-opted member of the World Scout Committee), is supported by few European and Asiatic national scout organizations driven without any political alternative common vision. The process was designed beginning of October in Thailand at Woodland Resort, upon the invitation of the famous producer of the Tiffany Show in Pattaya.
BSA's National Council aims at cutting all financial means to
WOSM and so oblige the World Scout Committee to dismiss Eduardo Missoni.
To read Perry's letter, click here.
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