Boy Scouts Lifts Ban On Gay Adults, Still Allows Discrimination Due To Religious Beliefs

Well, it’s official. Boy Scouts of America have lifted their ban on gay scout leaders. The organization has long been boycotted due to their discriminatory practices based on sexual orientation and they were sure to face legal challenges if they continued to stubbornly enshrine bigotry into their official codes. It seems that the organization’s president, Robert M. Gates, saw the writing on the wall, and headed up an effort to get rid of the ban on gay leaders. With a 79 percent vote, the executive board followed his lead. Gates released the following statement regarding the decision:

“Due to the social, political and legal changes taking place in our country and in our movement, I did not believe the [ban on gay leaders] could be sustained. Any effort to do so was inevitably going to result in simultaneous legal battles in multiple legal jurisdictions and at staggering cost.”

So, in other words, they did this not because it was the right thing to do, but to save their own keisters from lawsuits, court battles and boycotts. While yes, this is a step in the right direction, make no mistake- it was done grudgingly because Mr. Gates and his board members were painted into a corner.

If the statement from Gates isn’t enough to convince you, then perhaps this will. The scouts are still making sure that religiously-led scouting organizations are able to continue to discriminated based on sexual orientation. Robert Gates said of that decision:

“We must, at all costs, preserve the religious freedom of our church partners to do this.”

So, you see, Robert Gates fully supports continued discrimination. He was just wise enough to know that making it an official policy on the national level would do nothing more than kill his organization. In fact, he said, in a meeting regarding the issue in May:

“I truly fear that any other alternative will be the end of us as a national movement.”

As if all of this weren’t bad enough, the notoriously homophobic Mormon Church is one of the most important sponsors of Boy Scouts of America. They are, of course, raising hell about the vote:

“The church has always welcomed all boys to its scouting units regardless of sexual orientation. However, the admission of openly gay leaders is inconsistent with the doctrines of the church and what have traditionally been the values of the Boy Scouts of America.”

Don’t worry, bigots. Any Mormon-led groups will still be able to get rid of those icky gays, all in the name of religion. After all, it’s no secret that bigotry is a family value to you folks.

All in all, it’s important to note that this wasn’t done because of a change of heart on the part of this organization. Make no mistake: LGBTQ people are still persona non grata with Boy Scouts of America.

Featured image via video screen capture from If You Only News