Boy Scouts Shut Down Two Troops Over Acceptance of LGBT Leader

Gay Boy Scout Leader Not Fired.  Boy Scouts Fire Entire Troops Instead

The Boy Scouts of America shut down two troops when a church refused to fire a gay Boy Scout leader over his sexual orientation.

The homophobic rhetoric in America is reaching a fevered pitch now that a landslide of states have either legalized gay marriage or had bans ruled unconstitutional by their courts. One organization that has often been at the forefront of the idea that homosexual individuals shouldn’t share the same rights as everyone else is the Boy Scouts of America (BSA). They took a few hits from conservative groups when they decided to allow gay youth to join the organization, but they may have just saved face by shutting down two Boy Scout units because it turned out that their leader is a gay Boy Scout Scoutmaster.

“No Gays Allowed”

Seattle’s Rainier Beach United Methodist Church had, until very recently, two Boy Scout units under its wing. The BSA had granted the two units, Pack 98 and Troop 98, along with the church their own charters. Unfortunately for the units, it was discovered that Geoffrey McGrath, the boys’ Scoutmaster, is gay. At that point, the church was asked to remove McGrath, and their response was pretty epic.

“Based on our religious principles, we will continue to act as an autonomous church that does not discriminate.”

You know: like all that jazz Jesus was always going on about. We only mention Jesus, of course, because the BSA is always mentioning their religious beliefs. Well, in another example of those who claim to follow Jesus going blatantly against anything he would’ve done, the BSA released the following statement:

“We are saddened by this development, but remain committed to providing all youth with the best possible Scouting experience where the Scouting program is the main focus. We are contacting the parents and leaders of the units to inform them of the chartered organization change.”

Yeah, the best possible Scouting experience.  As long as you don’t happen to be in a troop whose Scoutmaster is gay. In that case, go screw yourself, right? I especially love the part where they said “where the Scouting program is the main focus.” So what?  Was McGrath holding Tranny Tuesday Fashion Shows in lieu of boat regattas?

That’s a rhetorical question.

Breaking their own rules

Just a quick little side note. The BSA has long had a rule on the books, which no longer applies to members thankfully, that bans openly gay leadership. There’s one little nuance to the rule, however, listed in their official membership standards (emphasis added):

“While the BSA does not proactively inquire about sexual orientation of employees, volunteers, or members, we do not grant membership to individuals who are open or avowed homosexuals or who engage in behavior that would become a distraction to the mission of the BSA.”

Main point there? “The BSA does not PROACTIVELY inquire about sexual orientation of employees.” So how did they find out that McGrath was gay? Well a nice NBC story came out which spoke of how inclusive the troop was. McGrath wasn’t outed during this broadcast, but it turns out that the BSA inquired about his orientation afterward. You know… PROACTIVELY.

There’s no arguing the fact that it’s hate

Oh you’re going to hear that it’s not about hate. It’s about their right to be bigots based on their religion, right? Well they’re not going to word it that way, but still. Some will even say that they’re worried about the children. After all, gay men are more likely to molest young boys, right? Well, that’s actually complete BS, and that’s straight from the mouth of the American Psychological Association. But hey, what do they know?

It’s bigotry, plain and simple. The BSA along with the parents and organizations who agree with it are teaching children that there is something morally wrong with homosexual individuals. They’re teaching them that these people should be outcasts. Sadly, this is likely a major contributor to the fact that LGBT teenagers are five times more likely than their heterosexual classmates to attempt suicide.

You likely couldn’t find a single person, liberal or conservative, who would deny that there is a suicide epidemic amongst LGBT teens. Yet, many conservative individuals still actively teach children that being gay is wrong. That it’s an abomination on par with the most grotesque of sins. Even knowing that this teaching is likely to result in bullying… and knowing that bullying is likely to result in teen suicide. In fact, recent research has shown that just being in an accepting environment can reduce an LGBT teen’s risk of suicide.

No, this isn’t about religion. Conservatives are engaging in behavior that they know could result in death, and they simply use their religion as an excuse to validate this dangerous behavior. Don’t get it confused. These aren’t the acts of religious people. This is outright hate.