Updated at 3:00 p.m. ET, Friday — Ryan Andresen had recently completed the requirements to earning his Eagle Scout award, including his final project of building a “tolerance wall” for victims of bullying like himself, but his Scoutmaster would not sign off on honoring him with the Boy Scouts’ highest ranking because he is gay, his mother said.
And late Thursday, the Boy Scouts of America said in a statement that because of Andresen’s sexual orientation and that he did not agree to Scouting’s principle of “Duty to God,” “he is no longer eligible for membership in Scouting.” But the family on Friday disputed that, saying the only reason Andresen was denied the rank is “because the Boy Scouts of America has a problem with Ryan being gay.”
Actually, it has a lot more to do with Ryan’s sexual orientation than anything having to do with a declared “duty to God” … especially since both Ryan and his parents have said on record that no rejection of the “duty to God” clause was ever made. The problem here is that the two ideas are essentially one in the same in the minds of those who run the Boy Scouts of America. If you’re gay and don’t hate yourself because of it, then you obviously can’t honor your duty to God because the real God hates homosexuals.
And adulterers, blasphemers, and those who don’t keep the Sabbath, but hey, who’s keeping score anymore?
Karen [Andresen, Ryan’s mother], who had started an online petition calling for her son to receive his award, said some other troop leaders had supported Ryan’s bid for the Eagle Scout ranking.
There were a couple of boy scouts selling popcorn at the entrance to our local supermarket today. Apart from any other context, I wouldn’t feel compelled to buy any of their stuff anyway, since they don’t sell cookies that (I’m convinced) are made with a dash of crack … but the BSA’s policy of being such assholes with regard to homosexuality means that they will never see my money regardless of what they sell.
I could try sending them a letter about it, but they already know. They just don’t care. Thankfully, more companies like Intel are instituting new policies to make sure that the organizations receiving charitable donations are in compliance with certain non-discrimination requirements.
Technology giant Intel Corporation recently told NBC News that since Jan. 1 it has required troops and councils to sign a document verifying that they comply with their non-discrimination policy in order to receive donations. The United Way of Greater Cleveland, which last year gave nearly $100,000 to the Boy Scouts of America, Greater Cleveland Council, recently said under its new diversity policy that the local chapter would no longer qualify to receive such funding.