The boys are finally taking a hint from the girls and letting more people up into their clubhouse.
The Boys Scouts of America’s 17-member executive committee voted unanimously last week to end the ban on gay adults acting as troop leaders. Now the motion will go before a meeting of the full 80-member executive board on July 27th, effective immediately if passed.
“This change allows Scouting’s members and parents to select local units, chartered to organizations with similar beliefs, that best meet the needs of their families,” a BSA statement said.
Two months ago, former US defense secretary and current president of BSA Robert Gates called for an end to the ban, warning Scout executives that “we must deal with the world as it is, not as we might wish it to be,” and that “any other alternative will be the end of us as a national movement.”
A month before Gates’ comments, the Scouts’ New York chapter openly defied the ban by hiring 18-year-old Pascal Tessier as a camp counselor.
David Boies, a prominent lawyer in touch with Tessier at the time, said, “We hope that is the beginning of the end, if you will, of the policy nationwide.”
And while these are all wonderful overdue developments, chapters sponsored by churches — 70 percent of all troops — will remain able to continue with discriminatory hiring practices under Americas’s newly reclaimed favorite buzzwords: religious freedom.
“This change would also respect the right of religious chartered organizations to continue to choose adult leaders whose beliefs are consistent with their own,” the BSA statement continued.
The Girl Scouts, on the other hand, continue to kick major ass.