Boy Scouts of America reaffirms anti-gay policy - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Boy Scouts of America reaffirms anti-gay policy


After a confidential two-year review, the Boy Scouts of America emphatically reaffirmed its policy Tuesday of excluding gays, ruling out any changes despite relentless protest campaigns by some critics.

The latest critic is a member of the Boy Scouts of America executive board.

The CEO of AT&T, Randall Stephenson, says he is now committed to ending the Boy Scouts of America ban on gay scouts and leaders.

"The scout oath has three basic principles to it. The last one being morally straight and, in my opinion, the homosexuality issue is not a morally straight issue," says former scout master Ron McGregor.

McGregor was a scout master for ten years with the BSA in Longview.

For McGregor, the decision to reinstate a lesbian scout leader is a no -brainer, you don't.

"A lot of parents are looking for mentors for their young men.  I don't think that a homosexual leader would present the right image that a parent would be looking for in terms of mentoring their young men," says McGregor.

However, Matt Every, who is President of PFLAG in Longview, or Parents, Friends and Family of Lesbians and Gays, says he's worried about the message the BSA is sending.

"I think it sends the message that you're not welcomed, and I think that's the wrong message," says Every.

Every is also an Eagle Scout and worked with the BSA for about 30 years.

Every says the principles he learned in the BSA are things he leans on daily, and would hate for others to miss out on the same experience.

"By not allowing gays and lesbians into the program, as leaders and as scouts, this excludes that group from learning a lot of good things about being good citizens and treating others with care," says Every.

McGregor says his solution to the problem would be that others who support homosexuality start a similar organization that promotes same sex values.

On Wednesday morning, an Ohio woman, who says she was removed as scout leader from her son's den because of her sexual orientation, will be presenting a petition to the BSA's national headquarters in Dallas.

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