Friday, May 22, 2015

Boy Scouts President Robert Gates calls for end of ban on gay scout leaders

Boy Scouts of America President Robert Gates called for an end to the organization's ban on gay Scout leaders during a speech at during the BSA’s annual national meeting in Atlanta on Thursday.

“We must deal with the world as it is, not as we might wish it to be. The status quo in our movement’s membership standards cannot be sustained.

“We cannot ignore growing internal challenges to our current membership policy from some councils. Nor can we ignore the social, political and juridical changes taking place in our country — changes taking place at a pace over this past year no one anticipated.

“Waiting for the courts is a gamble with huge stakes. If we wait for the courts to act, we could end up with a broad ruling that could forbid any kind of membership standard, including our foundational belief in our duty to God and our focus on serving the specific needs of boys.

“We must, at all costs, preserve the religious freedom of our church partners to do this Our oath calls upon us to do our duty to God and our country. The country is changing, and we are increasingly at odds with the legal landscape.

“The one thing we cannot do is put our heads in the sand and pretend this challenge will go away or abate. I truly fear that any other alternative will be the end of us as a national movement,” Gates, a former Secretary of Defense and CIA Director, said.  

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