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St. Louis Protesters Rally Against Allowing Gay Boy Scouts: "We Are Not Out To Discriminate"

Categories: LGBT, News

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Protesters are staging a rally in St. Louis today urging the Boy Scouts of America to reject a policy change that would allow openly gay members.

Linda Briggs-Harty, a Brentwood mother who will be attending the rally, tells Daily RFT, "We are not out to discriminate."

She says, "We are talking about open and avowed homosexuality and the risks that come with that kind of shift."

What are these "risks," and how is her cause not a discriminatory one?

See also:
- LGBT Bullying: Why Does Rep. Sue Allen Oppose Specific Protections for Gay Students?
- Mayor Francis Slay Says LGBT Issues Will Be a Priority in Historic Fourth Term
- Mizzou Athletic Department Says "You Can Play" to LGBT Students (VIDEO)

The local rally will take place at noon today at the Greater St. Louis Area Council of the Boy Scouts of America at 4568 Pine Boulevard. It is part of a national effort that OnMyHonor.Net, a "coalition of concerned Boy Scouts of America (BSA) parents, Scoutmasters, Eagle Scouts and other Scouting leaders," is organizing. There are more than 40 planned rallies across the country, the group says in a news release.

Earlier this year the Boy Scouts of America announced it was reconsidering its ban on gay members -- and the BSA's national council, made up of 1,400 members, will vote on May 23. The resolution on the table would maintain the gay ban for adult leaders, but get rid of restrictions based on sexual orientation for youth seeking membership.

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via Facebook

In a statement to Daily RFT, full version below, the Greater St. Louis Area Council notes that it follows the policies of the national organization and says, "We value the freedom of everyone to express their opinion. We teach our members to be courteous and respectful at all times." It says that, regardless of disagreements, the council remains focused on its common scouting goals and adds that the proposed resolution "does not, in some way, prevent kids who sincerely want to be a part of Scouting from experiencing this life-changing program."

Gay-rights advocates argue that the change would still be discriminatory given that LGBT adult leaders would remain banned (meaning gay members would have to leave once they become adults).

And protesters who don't want any change to current restrictions also seem to agree that allowing gay youth -- and not adults -- is an inconsistent policy.

The OnMyHonor.Net group says in an open letter:

The proposed BSA resolution is logically incoherent and morally and ethically inconsistent. Under the proposed change in policy, open homosexuality would be officially consistent with the Scouting code throughout a Boy Scout's life until the moment he turns 18, when it suddenly becomes a problem.

The letter, full copy below, goes on to make much more controversial comments, saying that allowing openly gay members will "inevitably create an increase of boy-on-boy sexual contact" and lead to the "tragedy of countless boys who will experience sexual, physical and psychological abuse."

Briggs-Harty says she's worried about "ethical and legal" problems with the proposed policy. The reform, she and other critics argue, would open up the organization to litigation from gay members and supporters who want to stay on as adults.

"We are not making statements on people's personal choices," she says, later adding that she is not trying to make people feel unwelcome and is also against any sort of bullying.

Continue for more of our interview and the full response from the St. Louis Boy Scouts.



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40 comments
je_eighth
je_eighth

     USA - from Puritans to Impure-itans

     Is there a connection between beautiful New England and entire American cities turned into smoking rubble? There is.
     Take same-sex marriage. I would have guessed that a "sin" city (San Francisco? Las Vegas?) would have been the first to legalize it.
     Oddly it's been the place where America started that's wanted to be the first place to help bring about the end of America and its values! It's been a Nor'easter of Perversion (helping to fulfill the end time "days of Lot" predicted in Luke 17) that began in (you guessed it) Boston in 2004.
     New England has gone from the Mayflower Compact to the Gay Power Impact, from Providence to decadence, from Bible thumpers to God dumpers, from university to diversity to perversity, and from the land of the Great Awakening to God's Future Shakening that will make the Boston bombings look like Walden Pond ripples by comparison!
     The same Nor'easter has been spreading south and as far west as Washington State where, after swelling up with pride, Mt. Rainier may wish to celebrate shame-sex marriage by having a blast that Seaddlepated folks can share in lava-land!
     The same Luke 17 prediction is tied to the Book of Revelation which speaks of the cities that God will flatten because of same-sexism - including American cities - a scenario I'll have to accept since I can't create my own universe and decree rules for it.
     I've just been analyzing the world's terminal "religion" that has its "god," its accessories, its "rites," and even a flag. It's an obsession that the infected converts are willing to live for, fight for - and even die for!       
     Want more facts? Google "God to Same-Sexers: Hurry Up" and "Government-Approved Illegals."

Rebecca Hohm
Rebecca Hohm

. Fact: Gay is non-transferable. You can't catch it. Fact: Gay doesn't mean "Child Molester". Fact: Gay troop leaders and gay Boy Scouts have always been part of the Boy Scouts. You just didn't know it.

JamesMadison
JamesMadison topcommenter

If a straight boy scout were to openly talk of his sexual conquests or desires, he would be asked to leave the troop. There is no reason a gay scout needs to publicly announce his orientation. None. He is underage so the scouting way is to keep your pants on. For those who do not, keep your mouth shut about who and what you did. Pretty damn simple.

Adults who are openly gay? Ask why they want to be part of a group that does not want them there? What sort of individual forces himself into a private club that has no desire to associate with him? The freedoms spelled out in our Bill of Rights include the freedom to assemble - cornerstone to that freedom is the right to choose who you wish to assemble.

The Congressional Black Caucus limits its membership to representatives who are black. Discriminatory, right? Or a freedom to express who they are? Should we allow Catholics to overrun a Muslim mosque, and vote for new leadership, electing the Pope to oversee the mosque? Or should those Muslims be able to decide to not allow Catholics to serve/vote there?

The Boy Scouts of America can rightfully exclude those they do not wish to have in their private club. No one else's business.

Daniel Stout
Daniel Stout

Even the absurdity of your point is absurd. ;) Why do simple minded (many are not simple minded, of course) conservatives eliminate logic when discussing discrimination. It just is not a contradiction for someone who despises discrimination to not like certain groups...because they discriminate. Opposing discrimination does NOT mean approving everyone to do what they think is right. It does MEAN pointing out that excluding groups that should NOT be excluded is wrong. Should you and your 1000 friends be excluded from dinner at my house? YES! Why is that not discrimination? Because we just don't have room for you and I have no frickin clue who you are. If it were because of your race, gender, sexual orientation, class, political affiliation, etc THEN it would be discrimination. But it is not. We just do not have room, so it is illogical, just like your point.

James Madison
James Madison

When you have nothing to argue, criticize the spelling and grammar. Well played.

James Madison
James Madison

The Stout family dinner is discriminatory as well. You will not allow me to invite 1000 of my closest friends to join you for breakfast, lunch, and dinner each day. When will the Stout family stop discriminating against us?!?!?! I have zero tolerance for you not loving me and my friends. It sucks.

James Madison
James Madison

Of course you discriminate. BOY scouts means boys. Not girls or chimpanzees. It is discriminatory to not allow girls to join, and it is discriminatory to refuse chimps memberships as well. Everyone discriminates. The Congressional Black Caucus will refuse my membership - I'm not a member of congress nor am I black. N.O.W. will not allow me to run their organization - I'm a male and I reject many of their positions. They discriminate against my gender as well as against my political views. This is a good thing. The right to assemble is also the right to assemble with those you want. this is part of our US Constitution through the Bill or Rights.

Daniel Stout
Daniel Stout

As a liberal, I am tolerant. Well, except for hate. I have ZERO tolerance for hate. It sucks.

Kenneth Pruitt
Kenneth Pruitt

I think you mean "their" instead of "there." "Their" designates possession, as you have implied here, as in your hilarious "Gay scouts of America." Also, if you create a silly, fictitious club, all the words of importance would be capitalized, but you missed that with "scouts." "There" designates a specific place, as in "I don't like gay people, so I won't go to that there gay club."

Kenneth Pruitt
Kenneth Pruitt

You don't need an apostrophe (or quotation marks, which you've misused anyway, but that's another matter) when making something plural, at least in most cases. So it's just "gays," not "gay's," or even "gay"s." One example of the proper way to use quotation marks is how I have done so, quoting your bigoted remarks verbatim to properly instruct you in the use of grammar while being mean.

Adam Hardebeck
Adam Hardebeck

You got to realize the people commenting on this post are from Missouri. There are a lot of backwards, unintelligent rednecks like Esteban and Marshall in Missouri. It's sad. But it's the truth so I expect rednecks to comment on issues like this. But it is nice to see the majority of people commenting actually have a brain.

Casey McBroom
Casey McBroom

Esteban, I think everyone has an 'agenda'. The purpose of gov't, properly, is protecting man from force. So, as a private organization (which would mean no public funding, and I'm against taxes for public funding of everything except: Police, Military and the Courts) the Boy Scouts of America has every right in the world to deny whoever they want: Gay, atheist, short people, or whatever... However, people can voice a concern that, that group, is discriminatory. They are simply identifying a fact. I'd agree that I'm not interested in 'gay rights' but I'm not interested in 'straight rights', either. However, I am interested in the gov't fully recognizing individual rights. And, that's what BOTH sides are evading. Religion--which long ago hijacked the right, as such, does not recognize 'individual rights', since they are based in commandments from god. Unfortunately, the left in this country are mostly collectivist, and, well, here we are... Right? So, yes, The Boy Scouts of America, is discriminatory. However, I think they provide survival skills and other skills that are very essential at a young age. However, this is certainly a moral mark against them. They have the right.... And I have the right to morally judge that decision of discrimination as: Evil. Here is the caveat you'll love... I like the idea of living in a free country... So, I recognize the fact I gotta "tolerate" their choices. Because we have "equal" individual rights. But, I won't personally approve of or "accept" it by holding that standard, myself. Which all this talk of 'equal' and 'individual' are unnecessary redundancies since only an "individual" can possess rights, anyway.... Sigh. Okay?

Justin Curia
Justin Curia

esteban is the coolest guy, guys. he knows all the babes, all the political facts, and has the sweetest fucking guitar. so metal. i bet he has a really cool '87 camaro. god, i want to be him so bad. then maybe i could troll the Internet liking all the hot babe pages and porn pages and become friends with facebook spam bots who don't really exist. nonexistent social lives FTW!

Kurt Boemler
Kurt Boemler

I was a scout. There were gay scouts in our troop. They were good scouts. None of the twelve points of the Scout Law are incompatible with being gay or straight. In fact, I believe all the points of the Law point toward inclusion.

Esteban Mainzer
Esteban Mainzer

see...i'll talk really slow you can understand me. i know liberals hate irony...but let me roll this out for you. gays put "equality" stickers on their cars and they attach themselves to the liberal democrat party that pushes "tolerance" and "coexist" and "acceptance". now, the boy scouts are a private organization. if gays want everyone to be "tolerant"...shouldn't THEY be "tolerant" of a group choosing who they want in their club? if gays were truly "tolerant" they'd let this go and they could start their OWN "gay scouts" club with merit badges in horrible music and adult diapers.

Marshall Patrick
Marshall Patrick

Let them become the Gay scouts of America........start there own gay club

Sharon Walker
Sharon Walker

Discriminating against gays is not helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, brave, or reverent. Each person should be evaluated based on their merits... not on color, sexual orientation, religion, handicaps, or other such things. I think non-discrimination would be a great trait to teach boy scouts. I really cannot believe that this even has to be explained to anyone anymore. These boy scouts are going to be released into the world as young men that will not be able to discriminate against people like this in the real world. Why should it be allowed within their sheltered little boy scout group?

Sharon Walker
Sharon Walker

It is discrimination. No matter which way you look at it. Times are changing and discrimination needs to be wiped out in all forms.

Daniel Stout
Daniel Stout

You are correct on one thing. They can do whatever they want. If they want to discriminate, they are allowed to that in this case. As for the whole "political agenda" thing. Their "agenda" is access only to what everyone else has access to. Please don't suggest that a 12-year old homosexual boy wanting to be a Boy Scout is an "agenda."

Esteban Mainzer
Esteban Mainzer

^ lmao. so pretty much you're doing the "i know you are, but what am i?" 3rd grade style of arguing. you can't come back with anything factual or rational so, like most liberals, you just say "oh, you're stupid" and run away to mommy.

Kurt Boemler
Kurt Boemler

A Scout is: trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean, and reverent. Says nothing about sexual orientation in there.

JJ O'Brand
JJ O'Brand

So much pollution comes from your fingertips, it's got to be a frightening to look into your head. Or to hear those voices telling you to be so miserable.

JJ O'Brand
JJ O'Brand

Just for her: discrimination dis·crim·i·na·tion [dih-skrim-uh-ney-shuhn] Show IPA noun 1. an act or instance of discriminating, or of making a distinction. 2. treatment or consideration of, or making a distinction in favor of or against, a person or thing based on the group, class, or category to which that person or thing belongs rather than on individual merit: racial and religious intolerance and discrimination. 3. the power of making fine distinctions; discriminating judgment: She chose the colors with great discrimination. 4. Archaic. something that serves to differentiate. Origin: 1640–50;

Esteban Mainzer
Esteban Mainzer

it's a private organization. they can let in who they want. gays don't care about being boy scouts, they care about pushing a political agenda.

Daniel Stout
Daniel Stout

Not allowing homosexual boys in the BSA is CLEARLY discrimination and needs to end!

Joe Suiter
Joe Suiter

BURN THAT FLAG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Edwin Reese
Edwin Reese

One St. Louis mom doesn't understand what words mean.

Richard Griffin
Richard Griffin

"...unless you are gay" I can only assume they meant

smdrpepper
smdrpepper

Hate to tell these conservatives this, but there already ARE gays in the boy scouts.  Back when I was a member, there was always a couple on the troupe.  Course, it did not end well for them since they ended up killing themselves, but they are there.

jealousblues
jealousblues

@smdrpepper exactly

what are the "risks" of allowing gay scouts and are they worth the risks of persecuting gay people and having them excluded?

There are quite a bit of suicides because people don't want to accept others as the are, that's a risk that Im more worried about.

JamesMadison
JamesMadison topcommenter

@jealousblues @smdrpepper , send your daughter to the next boy scout summer camp. Have her sleep and shower with the boys. Have her wrestle and skinny dip with them. Most parents would not do so. It is not that she will get sexually abused. It is that you would not place her into a situation that she might.

Now, the other stronger reason. The BSA has membership that feels strongly that the homosexual lifestyle is a moral sin. It is their right to think that, just as it is your right to think not. the BSA has the right to select its membership. It is a private organization. That right has been upheld in the Supreme Court - the right to assemble is also the right to choose whom you will assemble. You can disagree with their moral stance all you want, but that does not change their beliefs. You simply cannot force someone to belief something else.

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