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The Boy Scout Lawsuit

Good editorial in The Daily News talking about the lawsuit the Boy Scouts have filed against the City of Philadelphia, who are trying to evict them because they exclude gays.  The Inqurer has run other editorials denouncing the Boy Scouts position, and arguing the city is justified in what it’s doing.

I take a bit of a conflicted position on it, in that I believe the Boy Scouts of America is wrong for excluding homosexuals and atheists from scouting, but I also think the city is wrong for punishing this particular troop because of the backwards policies promulgated by the national organization.  The next thing you know, they’ll be punishing local shooting clubs because they don’t like what the NRA does… oh wait.

The kids in the Philadelphia Boy Scouts shouldn’t be made to suffer for the position of the national organization over which they have no control.  This is political grandstanding, pure and simple, and it’s shameful.  Scouting offers a lot of positive things to young boys, and in a city that’s in desperate need of giving young boys positive leadership, and keeping them out of trouble, it seems to me that this move is supremely short sighted on the part of the city politicians.

I understand their beef with the Boy Scouts of America.  I even share it.  But they are a private organization, and are free to exclude whoever they want.  The Boy Scouts are not a hate group.  They don’t preach discrimination, or notions that some people are better than others; they view homosexuality and atheism as immoral behavior and belief.  I disagree with them strongly on this matter, but that’s what the national organization has decided.  The city politicians should be free to denounce this all they want, but they shouldn’t go so far as punishing the boys of this local troop by canceling their lease.

6 Responses to “The Boy Scout Lawsuit”

  1. Carl in Chicago says:

    Yeah, I am not so sure that this conformity standard, if carried to far, is good at all.

    Could MENSA be sued if they didn’t accept people with low IQs?

    Could a lesbian group be sued if they didn’t accept a hetero member?

    Could the KKK be sued if they didn’t accept a black member?

    Could a creationist society be sued if they didn’t accept an evolutionist?

    See where I am going with this? Why the hell can’t a private organization exclude certain people? I mean…my home is private, and I have the right to exclude those I choose.

  2. If I understand correctly (my roommate’s dad is on the Board for the Boy Scouts of America), there’s a contract that the BSOA have on that building they’re in that allows them to have it for $1 per year – and that contract is indefinite. The city wrote it up, so not only are they ridiculous for insisting that Boy Scouts accept folks into their ranks that they’re morally against (fine, private organization, whatever), but they’re also trying to force a breach of contract. Boo. The whole situation is stupid.

  3. J Richardson says:

    To add to what Squeaky Wheel wrote, it is my understanding that the local council in Philly has spent millions on renovations over the years.

    As to gay/no gay, I’m conflicted. And I write this as an Eagle Scout. As to atheists, as my Connecticut Yankee mother-in-law used to say, “Life is tough when you have to chew milk.”

  4. Jym says:

    ‘As to atheists, as my Connecticut Yankee mother-in-law used to say, “Life is tough when you have to chew milk.”’

    I am struggling to figure out what the hell that means. :)

  5. Carl in Chicago says:

    “I am struggling to figure out what the hell that means.”

    As am I.

  6. RAH says:

    BSA tries to instill the best charcter traits boys can have and also to have fun and enjoy the outdoors and learn to competent and capable young men. Yet they have been demonized by the left. As long as they boys keep their sexuality to themselves there is no conflict. Boy Scouts are not a place to indulge in sexuality. The idea that leaders can not be homosexulas is just good sense to prevent trusted adults leaders to prey up young boys. They have been problems with this is the past.

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