Skip to comments.Boy Scouts Win Eviction Suit Against Philadelphia
Posted on 06/23/2010 4:56:26 PM PDT by Williams
"A federal jury on Wednesday declared that the city of Philadelphia had violated the First Amendment rights of the local chapter of the Boy Scouts of America by moving to evict it from its city-owned headquarters if it refused to repudiate the anti-gay policies of the scouts' national parent group.
In its verdict, the jury of six women and two men found that the city had imposed an "unconstitutional condition" on the scouts and declared that it was not "reasonable" to do so."
Here’s a link that should show at least the headline:
This makes my day. Thanks for posting.
Hey...the Good Guys win one in court for a change.
This is possibly the best news I’ve read in months.
Until Monday, 6/21/2010, I worked for a local BSA Council. They are all hurting.
I was laid off because simply there is no money left to pay staff with. I worked with personal information on all volunteers. They cannot farm my job out I needed to be bonded.
The remaining staff all took a 6% pay cut as well. I have been crying for two days.
The BSA is taking a huge toll on their belief system that protects the youth members.
Makes an Eagle Scout Mom happy.
Look at the money the City of Philadelphia wasted trying to persecute a group as noble as the Boy Scouts! The BSA could have put that money to such better use.
Mind you, the Philadelphia Boy Scout group agreed not to discriminate against gays and the City tried to evict them just because they wouldn’t also repudiate the national organization.
Sweet! Chalk up one for the good guys!
That is GREAT news!! Thank God!
Duh!!...Common Sense prevails, let the pervs start their own queer scouts bath-house.
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Rather than mourn the Court’s decision, Liberals every where should be celebrating the protection of diversity represented by this decision.
Jury: Philly can’t evict scouts for no-gays rule
By MARYCLAIRE DALE (AP) 2 hours ago
PHILADELPHIA The city of Philadelphia cannot evict a local Boy Scouts chapter from a city-owned building for refusing to admit gays, a federal jury ruled Wednesday.
The city had insisted that nonprofits given free use of its property must abide by local anti-discrimination laws, which include equal protection for gays. But the jury found the city’s reason violated the local scout council’s First Amendment rights.
“We do hope that eventually national (Boy Scouts of America) will change its minds. But at this point, the Cradle of Liberty (Council) is still obligated to follow its policy,” said foreman Merrill Arbogast, 40, of Reinholds, a trucker and former Eagle Scout.
In their lawsuit, the scouts had sought an injunction barring the city from evicting them, or charging $200,000 a year in rent, on their stately Beaux Arts headquarters building.
While the verdict gives weight to their request, the judge did not immediately issue the ban. Instead, he told jurors the city’s anti-discrimination policy is “principled” and said he hoped the two “honorable institutions” could work something out.
“The city defended this suit in a very principled way, in an area of the law that is highly nuanced Constitutional Law and highly unpredictable,” U.S. District Judge Ronald L. Buckwalter told jurors after the verdict.
In his view, he said, the city can still terminate the lease under the 1928 agreement, which was designed to give nonprofits free rent if they maintained the sites. However, the city must terminate the lease for a legally permissible reason, not because of an organization’s views.
“From now on, the Boy Scouts will be negotiating from a position of strength,” said lawyer Jason Gosselin, who represents the scouts. “The city can’t come in and impose its views on what the scouts ought to do.”
He hopes negotiations with the city will resume. The city was reviewing its legal options.
“While the good work of the Boy Scouts cannot be disputed, the city remains steadfast in its commitment to prevent its facilities from being used to disadvantage certain groups,” the city said in a statement.
The eight-day trial followed a decade of sometimes heated discussions stemming from a 2000 Supreme Court decision that said the Boy Scouts, as a private group, can exclude gays from membership. Some public and private donors around the country withdrew support.
In Philadelphia, the Cradle of Liberty Council tried to walk a fine line between appeasing the city, the United Way and other supporters and the Irving, Texas-based Boy Scouts of America.
In 2003, it enacted its own nondiscrimination policy but was forced to retrench when the Boy Scouts of America ordered it to conform with national rules. The chapter later enacted a statement that says it doesn’t tolerate illegal discrimination.
“We felt that they were between a rock and a hard place,” said Arbogast, the jury foreman.
There has been just one known case of a gay scout being ousted from the Philadelphia chapter, although the city argued that many more may be scared off by the national policy.
Greg Lattera, 25, testified that scouting meant the world to him as an inner-city child. He said he did not intend to become a flag bearer for gay rights when he spoke about being gay while wearing his scout uniform in a TV news interview.
“We felt he was used, a pawn for certain groups’ agenda,” Arbogast said.
Two good stories today: the Scouts. And Gore revealed for what he really is.
Oh happy day!
The good guys win one.
My thanks to the jurors for doing the right thing.
This is awesome news!
Now we need a miracle ruling in CA to uphold the rule of law and the will of the people.
The gay agenda (e.g. the destruction of the American family) is NOT an inevitability!
WooHoo for the Boy Scouts in Philly!
I'm so sorry to hear about your job. We're with Cradle of Liberty Council (subject of the lawsuit), and it has been hurting for years as well. I learned a few weeks ago that they'd let go the registrar who had been very helpful to me. They just don't have the money.
We closed Treasure Island camp, which was the oldest continually operated Boy Scout camp in America, and the camp at which the Order of the Arrow was founded. It was forced to close to campers in 2009. The damage from two horrible floods combined with a need for expensive upgrading were too much for our council to support. My sons spent a week at Treasure Island in 2007, and they loved it. I wish they could return to the Unami Lodge and their special island in the Delaware. I fear that we'll be closing some other camps. They are in poor condition, and we can't afford to bring them up to snuff. The debacle over our Philadelphia offices was the last thing we needed. Losing support from the United Way was a big hit a few years ago, and then this. I'm delighted that the lawsuit has gone our way - finally something positive.
Despite the tough finances, our council and our troop do an excellent job of guiding our boys. We have very willing volunteers and really terrific boys. It's a joy to be with them. When our sons go off to college, I suspect we'll continue to volunteer with the troop. Many of our parents have done so - it's like family.
Thanks for posting this.
When I was a Scout (’60s) we regularly went to Ockanickon.
Do the Scouts still have a camp there?
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Good news. I can't believe - good news! There are rational, moral people in the world. May more and more of them speak out, stand up, and run for office!
They did say they disagreed with National, though.
So glad for the Scouts! Proud mom of a Tenderfoot.
Damn!!! I can’t believe it.
Maybe I should take Philly off my ***** list?
Yes Ockanickon is operating and in good shape. Resica Falls likewise. The Cub Scout's Camp Garrison looks safe, at least for now. The greatest threat now is to Camps Delmont and Hart, both up at Musser Scout Reservation.
I think part of what we fight is the urban/suburban divide. Historically, the Valley Forge Council was in good shape and well run. The Philadelphia Council was not as healthy, and had less financial support from its urban base. When the two were merged to create the Cradle of Liberty Council, the financial resources had to stretch further. With the hits from the United Way and then the problems with the city of Philadelphia, it's been more challenging.
If anyone ever needed the Boy Scouts and their programs of leadership, personal growth, faith, and service, it's urban youth and families. Unfortunately, that message is lost on Philadelphia's leadership.
all right! some justice for the Boy Scouts!
Philadelphia's answer is to have young boys selling bean pies at the corner of Broad and Ridge.
It's the same issue that I was discussing elsewhere with the schools. BSA teaches boys to reach for their highest potential to set goals and achieve them, to rise above the mediocre. BSA also fosters RESPECT, respect for oneself, each other, parents, teachers, and authority figures. That is completely county to the culture of victimhood and self-esteem.
This reminds me of the time philly tried to sue Geno’s steaks over their “speak English” sign.
What’s up with that? I see guys in suits selling pies off of Broad street all the time.
One problem I see with this: it is the taxpayers who will pay the court costs of almost $1M, while the preening wankers who instituted the suit talk about how good and noble their intentions were...
Hallelujah ping! Discrimination by any other name is still discrimination — in this case, against people who hold traditional moral values.
Bow ties plus bean pies = Nation of Islam. Their founder Elijah Muhammed had been a fan of bean pies from his youth in South Carolina (I think), and made them the official dessert of the NOI.
Praise God from whom all blessings flow.
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