Skip to comments.The war on the Boy Scouts
Posted on 12/23/2007 7:45:02 PM PST by The Ghost of FReepers Past
The war on the Boy Scouts
By Al Knight
Article Last Updated: 12/18/2007 07:45:49 PM MST
Some topics are best left both out of sight and out of mind. The American Civil Liberties Union's war on the Boy Scouts is not one of them.
The ACLU, in a rational world, might well have been expected to champion the First Amendment rights of an organization like the Boy Scouts. After all, the First Amendment to the Constitution (so dear to the ACLU) protects both speech and the right to associate.
The U.S. Supreme Court in 2000 upheld the right of the Boy Scouts to select members and leaders without regard to state laws that bar discrimination based on sexual orientation.
That ruling hasn't stopped the ACLU. It has simply shifted tactics away from the courts and focused its energies on local and often mean-spirited campaigns to deny the Scouts places to meet and the ability to raise funds.
Sadly, the campaign appears to be working. Earlier this year, the Philadelphia City Council caved to pressure from the ACLU and gay and lesbian groups to end a 75-year-old, $1-a-year lease on the Boy Scouts headquarters. The lease was originally granted to run "in perpetuity."
But now, the Scouts will have to pay almost $200,000 a year in rent. Not only that, but the city's Cradle of Liberty Boy Scout Council, after years of resistance, gave in to pressure and essentially agreed to the demands of gay and lesbian groups. And more bad news: The left-leaning Pew Charitable Trusts and the United Way in Philadelphia have stopped funding the Boy Scouts.
The youth of Philadelphia need the Boy Scouts as much as ever, but the City Council is too cowardly to stand up to the unreasonable and vindictive demands of special interest groups.
These campaigns against the Scouts can no longer be disguised as efforts to end discrimination. They have only one purpose: to punish an organization that has performed countless good turns for a century.
At this point, it is unclear what can be done to convince the American public that actions like those taken by the Philadelphia City Council pose a risk to the nation and to the common good. Today, the Boy Scouts may be the target, but tomorrow the same shabby tactics could be aimed at the Rotary Club or any other private civic group.
Those who care about traditional notions of diversity and tolerance might consider joining the battle by showing support for the American Civil Rights Union. The ACRU, which was founded in 1998 as a response to the ACLU, is a champion of the First Amendment and conservative causes, including support for the enforcement of existing immigration laws, opposition to the Fairness Doctrine and support for the principle of executive privilege. Contact them at theacru.org.
Al Knight of Fairplay (firstname.lastname@example.org) is a former member of The Post's editorial-page staff. His column appears twice a month.
“...but tomorrow the same shabby tactics could be aimed at the Rotary Club or any other private civic group.”
You can count on it!!!
“United Way in Philadelphia have stopped funding the Boy Scouts”
Approximately 15 years ago I stopped donating to the United Way. My employer was upset because they liked 100% participation and asked me to donate even a dollar. I refused(my reason had nothing to do with Boy Scouts,I just considered it a top-heavy organization)).
Looks like I was right !
If you give to the United Way, now's the time to STOP.
OK, please help me understand why Philadelphia isn't breaking it's contract with the Scouts? Shouldn't Philly be forced to pay damages if they want out of it?
When and where has the "gay community" ever contributed $500K a year to poor, underpriveldged youth in Philadelphia?
When I use the term "gay community" I actually mean the radicals leading this jihad against the Boy Scouts. Perhaps the moderates will pressure the radicals to examine the harm they are inflicting on innocent third parties, the children.
Their beef is with the adult leadership. The Nazis when they took reprisals against the village of Lidice, removing all traces of it, at least spared the children from harm. Not so the radical gays.
I did go read the comment section... now excuse me, I must go take a shower.
By definition, the Boy Scouts have always been discriminatory— they don’t allow girls to join. But somehow that has never been a problem, the problem only arose when the gay agenda came up.
When I lived in Massachusetts, one of the towns stopped the Boy Scouts from meeting in a public school. The Girl Scouts (which are not affliated with Boy Scouts) were allowed to continue to meet. My question is-— Aren’t the Girl Scouts dicriminatory, do they let boys in?
Stop donating to the united way.
Give directly to the Boy Scouts or your favorite charity. The United Way supports abortion, and increasingly not supporting Boy Scouts.
So sad. I also take grief at work, but too bad. Not one penny to abortions.
I tell the United Way arm-twisters I give to the Salvation Army instead, and that they have a much better track record for putting money to charitable use, rather than being eaten up in “administrative expenses.”
That shuts them up.
I'm going to guess yes, because they also allow lesbian scout leaders. But I don't know if they allow males to be leaders.
Excellent article, and given that the President of the United States serves as honorary chairman of the Boy Scouts of America, surprisingly relevant to the current presidential primary contests.
The BSA appropriately protects 12 year old boys from exposure to other teens or adult leaders who openly identify themselves as being involved in the homosexual lifestyle.
And the left-wing PC and homosexual activist crowd has compared them to the Ku Klux Klan and demanded that they be denied public funding or access to public facilities.
Liberal Democrat Bill Richardson has already announced that because of the BSA policy, he will refuse if elected president to serve as honorary chair of the Scouts. But what do you expect from a Democrat?
Then there’s the even more pathetic Mitt Romney, the social liberal trying to pass himself off as a “conservative.”
Asked in 1994 whether he supported the Boy Scouts’ policy prohibiting adults or teens openly involved in the homosexual lifestyle, Romney said:
“I feel that all people should be allowed to participate in the Boy Scouts regardless of their sexual orientation.”
Asked the same question in 2007, Romney refuses to answer directly and instead responds with a “feel good” dodge that makes it clear nonetheless that he still does not support the BSA’s nationwide ban:
“The Romney campaign pushed back at the allegations, saying Romney...believes local councils should decide their Scouting policies.”
In other words, he does not support the BSA’s nationwide ban, and instead believes the Philadelphia Scout Council should be free to capitulate on the issue under threat of losing their HQ building.
That way, if you’re fortunate enough to live in a Scout council you can trust to continue the BSA policy, your 12 year old will only be exposed to teens and adults involved in Scouting who engage in homosexual behavior if he attends a national jamboree or some other function where troops from multiple councils are present. That’s a comfort, huh?
Mitt also attempts to dodge by saying he supports the Scouts’ right to decide their own policies.
1. That’s not the question.
2. No doubt the Scouts will find that comforting, given that they’ve already won the right in the U.S. Supreme Court to decide their own policy.
I made that mistake too. Where does this hatred for the scouts come from? I have a simple question for these hate filled leftists: if it "isn't about molestation", why exactly do gays want to sleep in tents with little boys?
This is not new,its been going on for years. Every time I receive a phone call or letter from the United Way I tell them (or write) that I now give to the Boy Scouts.
I quit giving to the pro-abort United Way long ago.
Here in Michigan, two local United Ways cut off funding to the Boy Scouts.
The Gerald Ford Scout Council lost $4,500 in funding, and the non-profit with which I’m affiliated made a donation of that amount to the Ford council to make up the loss.
In Ann Arbor, the city council — citing its local ordinance prohibiting “discrimination” on the basis of “sexual orientation* — prohibited city employees from donating to United Way via their city payroll deduction plan, since UW still supported the Scouts. The Ann Arbor UW thereafter stopped funding the Scouts.
These state and local “orientation” laws are the club used against the Scouts in Philly, California, Ann Arbor, and elsewhere.
Last week on Meet the Press, Mitt Romney endorsed such “sexual orientation” laws passed at the local level, while saying he no longer supports Ted Kennedy’s federal “orientation” law. As a candidate for U.S. Senate, he had promised to co-sponsor such a federal law.
MR. RUSSERT: You said (in 1994) that you would sponsor (Sen. Ted Kennedy’s federal) Employment Nondiscrimination Act. Do you still support it?
GOV. ROMNEY: At the state level. I think it makes sense at the state level for states to put in provision of this.
MR. RUSSERT: Now, you said you would sponsor it at the federal level.
GOV. ROMNEY: I would not support at the federal level, and I changed in that regard because I think that policy makes more sense to be evaluated or to be implemented at the state level.
I always send the United Way pledge card back with a note explaining that I will donate directly to the Boy Scouts.