Ousted gay Boy Scout leader fighting for reinstatement in Kentucky

Greg Bourke: 'It would be a very brave thing to do, a scout is supposed to be brave'

Ousted gay Boy Scout leader fighting for reinstatement in Kentucky
18 September 2012

Last month, Assistant Scoutmaster Greg Bourke revealed to a Boy Scout Council in Kentucky that he is gay.

He was promptly forced to resign after five years of service because the Lincoln Heritage Council and Boy Scouts of America determined that he ‘did not meet its membership requirements.’

Now Bourke is fighting to be reinstated and tells the television station WHAS: ‘It would be a very brave thing to do, A scout is supposed to be brave. So I would challenge them to do that.’

He has the support of nearly 3,000 scouts, parents and community leaders who have signed a petition he has created on Change.org.

The petition demands that the discriminatory policy against gay youth and leaders must end and notes that organizations including the Girl Scouts, the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, as well as the 4H Club all welcome gay kids as well as adult leaders.

Many of those who signed the petition left supportive comments including Lincoln Heritage Council Eagle Scout John Gettelfinger who wrote: ‘The discriminatory policies the BSA has chosen to maintain are disgraceful. They need to exhibit the bravery they claim to teach in the scout law and take a stand.’

Parent Sonya Wolter wrote: ‘I am one of several parents who refuse to let my son join until this rule is changed. Special praise to the Girl Scouts who don’t discriminate against some of our best leaders. Teach our children love and acceptance.’

In July, the Boy Scouts of America announced that it has no plans to lift its ban on gay members after what it said was two years of consideration by an 11-person committee.

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