YouTube gay defender Wahls and 280,000 others demands US scouts reinstate ousted lesbian den leader Jennifer Tyrrell
An Eagle Scout who became a YouTube sensation is giving a 280,000 name petition to the Scouts of America, demanding they reinstate a lesbian mom ousted as a den leader.
Zach Wahls became famous when his video in support of his two gay moms went viral on YouTube, reaching over 2,500,000 views so far.
Now he’s supporting Jennifer Tyrrell, an Ohio mom ousted as the den leader of her seven-year-old son’s troop because of her sexual orientation.
Her story has attracted widespread coverage, celebrity support and a massive petition signed by thousands of scouts, scout leaders and former scouts.
Wahls will deliver those signatures during the Boy Scouts’ National Annual Meeting in Kissimmee, Florida tomorrow (30 May).
The petition, started by Tyrrell on Change.org, also urges the Boy Scouts of America to end their policy banning gay scouts and gay scout leaders.
Wahls said: ‘On behalf of the thousands of scouts, scout leaders and former scouts who’ve signed the petition in support of Jennifer, we’re hoping that the Boy Scouts of America will take this moment to end its policy of discrimination against gay Americans.
‘It is both disappointing and discouraging that the Boy Scouts continue to fixate on the identity of adult leaders instead of the content of their characters.
‘In the Boy Scouts, I learned valuable lessons about bravery, respect, and not passing judgement on others. If only the Boy Scouts would practice what they preach and end this discriminatory policy against families, youth and leaders.’
Tyrrell’s petition has also garnered support from scores of celebrities, including Josh Hutcherson, Benicio Del Toro, Julianne Moore, Fran Drescher, Ricky Martin, Kelly Osbourne, Jesse Tyler Ferguson and more.
Tyrrell said that she was honored to have the support of Wahls and others like him.
‘I feel so lucky to have the support of thousands of scouts, scout leaders and former scouts,’ she said.
‘These are people who know firsthand how valuable scouting can be, but also know how damaging the policy prohibiting gay youth and gay leaders can be for troops and communities.
‘I remain extremely hopeful that this network of current and former scouts and scout leaders can create the type of change within the Boy Scouts organization, and that soon we will see a Boy Scouts that truly values tolerance, diversity, and respect within its membership.’
Watch Wahls original video, defending his two moms, here: