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May 23, 2015

Franklin Graham blasts Robert Gates for wanting to end organization's ban on gay adults

The son of Billy Graham, the famed evangelist who has been spiritual adviser to several US presidents, is blasting the president of the Boy Scouts of America for wanting to end the group's ban on gay adults.

Franklin Graham accuses BSA President Robert Gates, a former US Secretary of Defense of 'not having the moral courage to do what is right.'

'What are you thinking?' he asked Gates in Facebook post. 'This move is bending to LGBT activist groups and would put young, innocent boys at risk.'

May 21, 2015

American Family Association launches petition against 'boys in skirts' joining

The Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) has reaffirmed its policy of welcoming transgender girls.

The policy, which was made public four years ago, only recently came to the attention of the anti-gay American Family Association (AFA), which the Southern Poverty Law Center has designated a hate group.

The AFA said the GSA had 'lost its moral compass' and started an online petition urging it to rescind the policy and restrict membership 'biological girls.'

May 21, 2015

Robert Gates: Scouts can't 'ignore the social, political and juridicial changes taking place in our country'

Boy Scouts of America President Robert Gates said today that the organization can no longer ban openly gay adults.

Gates, a former US Secretary of Defense, said at the BSA's annual meeting in Atlanta: 'I must speak as plainly and bluntly to you as I spoke to presidents when I was Director of CIA and Secretary of Defense. We must deal with the world as it is, not as we might wish it to be. The status quo in our movement’s membership standards cannot be sustained.'

May 1, 2015

Scouts for Equality has raised the money through crowdfunding

The Boy Scouts of America stands to gain more than $53,000 if the organization drops its ban on gay adult leaders and staff members.

Scouts for Equality used the crowdfunding site Challeng.org to raise the money.

Former Eagle Scout Zach Wahls, whose two moms are gay, is heading up the effort as executive director of Scouts for Equality.

April 4, 2015

The chapter could face a lawsuit over their appointment of an openly gay Eagle Scout

The New York Boy Scouts have hired an openly gay Eagle Scout in direct defiance of the scouts’ anti-gay national policies.

On his 18th birthday, in August 2014, Eagle Scout Pascal Tessier wrote an open letter to the Boy Scouts of America to say goodbye to the organization – because its national policies allow gay scouts but ban gay leaders.

March 24, 2015

'In the eyes of the BSA, I am worthy to share Scouting with my children, but he is not'

After growing up as part of the Boy Scouts of America, August Easton-Calabriaand and his identical twin brother, Liam, reached the rank of Eagle Scout last year.

But now that they have turned 18, the BSA is forcing them to take different paths because Liam is gay.

January 24, 2015

In 1996, California's Supreme Court banned state judges from associating with groups that discriminate due to sexual orientation

California's Supreme Court voted to ban state judges from affiliating with the Boy Scouts of America.

As reported by the Associated Press, the seven judge court unanimously approved the decision on 23 January.

The justices are following a 2014 February recommendation by its ethics advisory committee.

In 1996, the state's highest court ruled judges could not belong to groups that discriminate due to sexual orientation.

August 13, 2014

Camp Abercorn tells stories that confront the anti-gay policies of the Boy Scouts of America

The Boy Scouts of America are no longer kicking gay kids out of their organization - that is until they turn 18.

One of kids is Jeffrey Simon, an Eagle Scout who is now too old to be a part of scouting because gay adult leaders and staff members remain banned.

Simon is making a web series called Camp Abercorn which confronts the BSA's discriminatory policies by telling authentic stories about scout camping.

July 31, 2014

Tico Perez, national commissioner of the Boy Scouts of America, has ruled out having adult gays and lesbians as scout leaders any time soon but says it's not because the scouting movement views them in any way as potential sexual predators

Boy Scouts of America national commissioner Hector 'Tico' Perez has made it absolutely clear that the reason why his organization will not let openly gay or lesbian people be scout leaders is not because they are viewed as more likely to be pedophiles.

July 30, 2014

What makes Sacramento’s Rainbow Troop 2384 slightly different to other Girl Scout groups? Most of its children come from LGBT families. GSN talked to the troop’s founder, Alisha DeCou, to find out more

Alisha DeCou says she was raised by religious parents who had a tolerant and open-minded outlook on life. From a young age, she was taught that not all people are attracted to people of the opposite gender, and that all humans are unique and worthy of love.

Bisexual herself, she is now married and lives with her husband, three sons (aged 13, 12 and 5) and three daughters (aged 7, 2 and eight months).

June 24, 2014

Gay scouts past and present and their allies to participate in oldest LGBTI pride event in the US

Openly gay members of the Boys Scouts of America will make history on Sunday (29 June) when they participate in the 44th Annual New York City Pride March.

Until last January, a member of the scouts could be booted from the organization for being gay. Openly gay adults are still banned from being leaders.

Active and former Boy Scouts and leaders will present the American flag during the opening ceremony then serve as Color Guard during the march of more than 14,000 people down Fifth Avenue.

June 11, 2014

The Boy Scouts of America’s policy of excluding members once they become adults has been criticized by Attorney General Eric Holder in the strongest statement by a US official against the policy to date

US Attorney General Eric Holder has made a stinging criticism of the Boy Scouts of America excluding gay and lesbian adults from scouting in comments to a Washington gathering of LGBTI legal advocate Lambda Legal.

‘The continuation of a policy that discriminates against gay adult leaders – by an iconic American institution – only preserves and perpetuates the worst kind of stereotypes,’ Holder said Tuesday.

May 24, 2014

Robert Gates has said he would have allowed gay adults in the Boy Scouts of America, but opening up the debate again now would be too problematic

The newly elected president of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) has said he would have supported gay adult members in the scouts.

Robert Gates, who was elected the new president of the BSA on 22 May, said he would have voted in favour of allowing openly gay adults in the scouts last year, but he won’t open up the issue again because of the problems it may cause.

April 30, 2014

An Arizona Boy Scout member, aged 19, is contesting the organization’s ‘no gay adults’ rule after he was accidentally outed on Facebook

A gay 19-year-old says the Boy Scouts of America isn’t re-hiring him because of his sexuality.

Garrett Bryant, a 19-year-old from Arizona, has been serving in the Boy Scouts since he was 11, but had decided to keep his sexuality a private matter in order to keep serving in the Boy Scouts, according to NBC News.

April 21, 2014

Rainier Beach United Methodist church in Seattle stood by Geoffrey McGrath when he got fired for being gay, now the Boy Scouts of America want nothing to do with them

The Boy Scouts of America (BSA) have told a Seattle church they cannot host a troop, because the scoutmaster is an openly gay man.

The BSA wrote to Rainier Beach United Methodist Church over the Easter holiday saying they are no longer affiliated with them because of their connection with gay scoutmaster Geoffrey McGrath.

April 9, 2014

Geoff McGrath vows to continue to serve his local troop in Seattle

The Boy Scouts of America does not think Geoff McGrath is fit to continuing serving as a scoutmaster in Seattle because he is gay.

His troop and its charter organization disagree and are standing by McGrath after he had his registration revoked this week by the BSA.

Even though the BSA ended its ban on gay scouts at the start of the year, the ban remains in place for gay and lesbian adult leaders like McGrath.

McGrath has vowed to continue to lead the troop.

April 1, 2014

After a gay troop leader took his Boy Scouts to a Pride parade, he was accused of 'injecting homosexuality into scouting'

A gay scout leader is speaking out afer getting fired from the Boy Scouts of America because he ‘deliberately injected’ his homosexuality into a scout troop.

Geoff McGrath, an Eagle Scout leader who is thought to be the first openly gay scout leader in America, started a new troop through a local church in Seattle’s Rainier Beach neighborhood.

But the 49-year-old was removed from his position because they believed he had breached the national scout policy against gay leaders in the organisation.

March 28, 2014

The US religious right is boycotting Girl Scout cookie sales, costing the organization millions of dollars

The one place you’d hope the abortion battle would not be waged is with the Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA).

Girl Scout cookies are a ubiquitous symbol of the organization and an American staple like apple pie. They have made nearly $700million (€500million) in sales since 1999.

So the idea they have helped fund abortions at Planned Parenthood is unfathomable.

But with religious right activists fishing for another fallacious assertion to try on the American public, this one unfortunately has legs.

December 31, 2013

A 17-year-old boy is hoping one of the largest youth organizations in the US will allow LGBTI adults to become scout leaders

On New Year’s Day, one of the largest youth organizations in the United States will finally open its doors to openly gay members.

Scout Pascal Tessier, 17, will be one of the first to break down the barriers.

The Maryland state teen has said he has always felt ‘not good enough’ to be in the Boy Scouts.

‘You’re openly gay and that’s never going to happen and because you’re gay, you’re not good enough,’ Tessier explained.

December 29, 2013

As the day gets nearer for open gay troop membership, Boy States of America expect a boring transition

On 1 January, the Boy Scouts of America will begin to accept openly gay members. While the policy change is historic, BSA representatives expect little change.

'My hope is there will be the same effect this Jan. 1 as the Y2K scare,'  Brad Haddock, a BSA national executive board member, who also chairs the policy implementation committee, said to the Associated Press. 'It's business as usual, nothing happens and we move forward.'

October 31, 2013

Robert Gates led the dismantling of Don't Ask, Don't Tell while US Secretary of Defense

Former US Secretary of Defense Robert Gates has been chosen as the next leader of the Boy Scouts of America.

Gates assumes the role in May 2014, five months after the scouts change in policy regarding gay members goes into effect.

The BSA voted earlier this year to change its century-old policy of banning openly gay members up until they reach the age of 18. But the ban remains for adults scout leaders, employees and volunteers.

Gates has experience in such situations.

September 10, 2013

Trail Life USA hopes to provide a home for people who feel excluded from the Boy Scouts of American because the scouts won't exclude gay teens

A group set up by people who have left the Boy Scouts of America after the scouts allowed openly gay teens to become scouts launched in Tennessee over the weekend.

Around 1,200 people attended an inaugural Leadership Conference for the group ‘Trail Life USA’ which bills itself as a Christian alternative to the Boy Scouts of America.

August 11, 2013

Although Boy Scout Troop 1316 and Cub Scout Pack 316 can no longer meet at  Anchorage Baptist Temple, other organizations have offered the scouts a place for meetings

The Anchorage Baptist Temple, located in the US Western state Alaska, has canceled its Boy Scouts sponsorship because the Boy Scouts of America now allow open gay members.

According to the church's chief pastor, Rev. Jerry Prevo, the decision took so long because there were hopes BSA would reconsider.

As for any repercussions about the change, Prevo is not worried.

July 20, 2013

GLAAD says group should not support organization that 'actively discriminates against gay Americans'

Carly Rae Jepsen said no, Train said no, but 3 Doors Down has said yes.

The band announced Friday (19 July) that it will perform at this weekend's Boy Scout Jamboree despite the organization's continued ban against openly gay leaders.

Boy Scouts of America recently ended its long-standing ban on allowing openly gay scouts under the age of 18 to participate - a policy that had led Jepsen and Train to back out of the event back in March.