The Boy Scouts of America are considering lifting the ban on gay Scouts but keeping it on gay Scout leaders.
The Scouts announced Friday that the proposal would be submitted to the roughly 1,400 voting members of its National Council at a meeting in Texas the week of May 20.
Gay-rights groups have demanded a complete lifting of the ban, while some churches and conservative groups want it maintained in its entirety, raising the likelihood that the new proposal will draw continued criticism from both sides.
Indeed, the BSA, in making its announcement, estimated that easing the ban on gay adults could cause widespread defections that cost the organization 100,000 to 350,000 members.
In January, the BSA said it was considering a plan to give local Scout units the option of admitting gays as both youth members and adult leaders or continuing to exclude them.
That is bullshit. All it does is perpetuate the stereotype that gay leaders are pedophiles and can’t be trusted around children, and the gay Scouts will be ostracized from the other boys with no role model or support in Scouting. All this compromise does it make it even more obvious to both the boys and the adults that being gay is something to be ashamed of and kept away from.
On another point, anti-gay Scout supporters say that a lot of sponsors such as the Mormons, the Catholics, and the hard-core evangelical churches that sponsor Scout troops will abandon Scouting if the ban is lifted. Really? Fine. It’s better that the membership falls than let kids be exposed to the entrenched bigotry and homophobia that emanates from organizations such as those religious institutions. I’m pretty sure that some groups that were put off from supporting the Scouts would welcome them once they make it clear that Scouting is for every man and boy, not just the straight ones.