The Boy Scouts of America will vote on whether to lift the ban on gays holding leadership positions and allowing openly gay youth to participate in the program.

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The Boy Scouts of America will consider lifting the ban on gays holding leadership positions and allowing openly gay youth to participate in the program.

Jeff Purdy, a scout executive with the Buckskin Council of West Virginia, said the Boy Scouts of America are obligated to adhere to any national policies. That’s what the council intends to do once the final decision is made later this week at the BSA National Convention in Grapevine, Texas.

At this point, Purdy said leaders and members of local troops are focusing on their future, including a massive event being held in their back yard, the National Jamboree at the Summit Bechtel National Scouting Center in Fayette County.

“We’re sending four Boy Scout troops to the national jamboree and we’re gearing up for typical summer programs,” he said. “We’re just really busy and we need to stay busy focusing on what we do which is deliver quality scouting programs to our kids.”

The Buckskin Council met in March in Charleston to discuss lifting the organization’s ban on gays. The council heard from parents, leaders, scouts and donors and passed those comments on to the National BSA.

The board will use those comments and others from 240-plus councils around the country to make their decision, expected to be levied Thursday.

No matter the decision, Purdy said the council’s mission does not change.

“We’re going to try to get kids outdoors, camping, teach them leadership skills and teach them to be good scouts.”

There hasn’t been much backlash here in West Virginia over the controversial issue, but it has impacted the Jamboree. Musical acts Carly Rae Jepsen and Train, set to perform at the event, pulled out because of the Boy Scouts’ ban on gays.

Train has said it will perform at the event if the ban is lifted.

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  • CaptainQ

    Regardless of where you stand on this issue, one thing's for certain. IF the BSA do change their policy, it will have a rippling effect on many Boy Scout Troops in West Virginia.

    A very large percentage of Boy Scout units in WV are sponsored by area churches. Needless to say, the majority of sponsor churches will pull their support away from the BSA if the policy changes. This will mean that many local troop units will have to find new places to hold their meetings and recruitment drives. This on top of the church parents who'd immediately pull their kids out of scouting as well. Some of the local units with bigger financial backing could choose to form their own, independent scouting clubs, but the percentage of those who could actually afford to make this kind of move seems very low in this economy.

    So, whether you're pro or con on this issue, it is of a certainty that if the BSA vote to change their policy, it'll serve as a crushing blow to Scouting in the Mountain State.

    A recent article in the Washington Times says that either way the BSA decide to go on this issue, it'll lose membership:

    Hard to disagree with this conclusion. Perhaps the larger question to ask here is, does Scouting have ANY future in America at all? The world has changed and there's a lot more out there for kids to do than the become Boy (or even Girl) Scouts. Is Scouting yet another relic of the past that perhaps will go into extinction on it's own in time?

  • Fubar

    I suggest the gay community take a refresher course in anatomy - and then try to tell straight people and themselves that they are normal.
    Please quit bashing West Virginians for being mostly white and straight as if that makes us evil. I'll tolerate other people's existence and lifestyle as they should tolerate mine. But I'm not going to force my views or lifestyle on private groups as that is their right to form an association defined by their common interests and activities.

  • cindy

    Obviously this is a very polarizing topic & everyone's emotions are feuled. We're like the South prior to the civil right movement. White people didn't want black people to drink their water, sit at a counter with them, go to school with their children, or vote. This also was a very polarizing topic back then. Then integration came & the world didn't end. Why can't people see that this is a similar situation & that accepting gays into your organization isn't going to be disastrous? Do studies if you doubt that associating with gays will not turn someone gay. But from that point of view, don't you think that a "gay" child could be influenced straight by being around heterosexuals. However, after reading some comments on here, if the BSA does choose to accept gays, I think a change in leadership or at least mentality would be in order because they obviously wouldn't be accepted & would be bullied...something no child or adult should experience.

  • To the Point

    This is a PRIVATE organization and if they so choose to ban homosexuals from being integrated into their society then so be it. It is the same if the NAACP would ban all non african americans or a feminist group banning all men. Their CHOICE!!

  • ShakingMyHead

    Perfect example SunnyCal

    Great example of the majority scared to death of granting a minority group equal rights. Again, can anyone give me a solid example of how the scouts will be damaged allowing gay scouts or gay parents as den mothers or fathers ? Nope.. But it's all this crazy agenda right? I'd like to see the doors reversed and if gays were they majority hypothetically and straight people couldn't marry, had to worry about being fired and evicted, had groups and backward @ss corporations like chickfilA trying to keep these rights from you.

    I pay taxes, my fiancé pays taxes, we are educated professionals... Yet in the eyes of these bigots and to an extent the government we are 2nd class citizens. Please tell my mother why she doesn't deserve grandchildren and a marriage for her son. Because I guarantee you if you we're in her shoes you would be fighting mad...

    Remove yourself from you're prejudiced and realize we are normal human beings just wanting equal rights... Nothing more and by god nothing less!

    • To the Point

      ok well let me tell you why your mother is not deserving of grandchildren from you........Two men cannot biologically have children!!!

      • ShakingMyHead

        Yeah welcome to 2013 brainiac. Ever heard of adoption? Ever heard of invitrofertization? Nope two men can never have kids... Nope nope nope... Watch me!!!!

        • Shawn

          "Have" is the key word! You will "have" one when the state allows you to.

      • Shawn

        Very true and well said. Two men cannot have children and that's that!

  • sunnycal

    Well said Eagle, I hope the BSA wont give in to all of this BS. Hey ShakingMyHead, just because the "rest of the country" does it does not make it right. Be in the world but not of the world. and Brian, being unaccommodating............... so now we are also racist if we dont belive in homosexuality. Grow up people and stop trying to impress Your views on others who don't agree with You. I'm sure the homosexual community could start up thier own scouting program and would get the "blessing" of our own government with taxpayer $'s no less. But this is not thier agenda is it ?

  • ShakingMyHead

    Soooo homophobia is still in huh?

    Reading these comments I can't do much but shake my head in disappointment. I'm gay, my fiance' of 7 years is gay. (and yes to those of you against gay marriage, we're still getting married... let me know how it affects your relationship once we do and we'll send you a condolence card)

    Sending a message to the young scouts that it's ok to exclude someone over perceived or known orientation is sickening. Homophobia isn't something you're born with. It's the policies of clubs, opinions of closed minded families and friends that create homophobia.

    Also, I shake my head because while the rest of the country and MOST of the world are seeing great advancements for the gay and lesbian community. West Virginia is still stuck in the dark ages. This is why everyone views West Virginians as racist, homophobic, bible thumping hillbillies. This is why thousands of youth leave this state in search of more accepting and tolerable areas. Also, fortune 500 companies and all their jobs prefer more socially tolerant areas.

    But hey!!!! We got coal!!! and homophobes!!! who wouldn't want to stay here?!

    Please educate yourselves and get some culture.

    • Shawn

      And once again it shows how you only want your opinions heard. If somebody doesn't go with your type of lifestyle you get defensive and start throwing out your own words of hate.

      Hey i'm glad you found somebody that makes you happy and you want to share your life with. Enjoy your days together. Thats your right to choose your own lifestyle.

      As for me, I'm not going to "tolerate" society just because its the norm these days. That is the problem with this world today. People are perfectly content with tolerating things and thats why you're seeing all this war, terrorism, etc.

      And good luck in your life...i hope your civil union works out for you!

    • Brian

      It's West Virginia, man. I've learned that, with my social views, I have to cope with a certain cognitive dissonance about West Virginians.

      Yes, many West Virginians are racist, homohatin, ignorant, ridge running hicks. Those same hicks happen to act approximately like the salt of the Earth when dealing with people who they feel some commonality with. In other words, they treat rural white people fantastically well. They are much less accommodating to people who they feel are significantly different from them, for example racial minorities, homosexuals, and the urban type.

      Being a white, economically conservative West Virginian who happens to be somewhat left of center socially and who prefers the company of black people, I see a lot of both of the above said sides of West Virginians, hence the cognitive dissonance. I know that a lot of the people in West Virginia who are very nice to me would act much differently toward a lot of the people I care about.

      So are they good people, because they treat me so well, or are they bad people because they hate my friends without a valid reason?

      I've learned not form my opinions of people based on haloing and not to set those opinions in stone.

  • Shawn

    Everybody needs to chill out and remember that just because you're gay doesnt make you a "child molester."

    Sexual predators are just that....they go after boys and girls all the same. Its not about sexual orientation but their sick mental state.

  • Eagle

    The point here is not really allowing homosexuals to be in the BSA. It is about a much larger radical agenda; to establish ligitimacy for an illegitimate lifestyle in all areas of American society.
    I am a life-long scouter. I earned my Eagle Award many years ago. In my experience I know there have been and are many homosexuals in the BSA. The reality is that before the Radical Homosexual agenda folks, like our friend Skeptic, began whinning about special recognition because of a life choice, no one cared and no one felt the need to declare their sexual preference. Sexual identity has never been part of what the BSA programming has offered. There is no merit badge or acheivement that is earned by saying "I am a homosexual or I am a heterosexual". The Homosexual agenda folks are seeking to get recognition in everything that is good and decent in our society, thereby legitimizing an illigitimate lifestyle. Folks like Skeptic can throw around their radical views and try to make us feel wrong about our views. They are comfortable with their slurs, but when we try to defend, we are bigots. If I had a vote, I would vote to uphold the current policy. We have the support of the US Supreme Court. We should not allow the Homosexual Agenda to infiltrate, perhaps the last bastion of good in our country. The truth is that right along with many other things, practicing a homosexual lifestyle is sin. They can say what they want and do what they want, but eternal judgement will come for us all.

    • FungoJoe

      Well said Eagle, well said. This is just a part in trying to legitimize and mainstream the vile liberal progressive Agenda and then push that lifestyle upon us all.
      Seems like the neo-libs are saying the gays have rights but the scouts do not.

  • Mike D

    As an Assiststant Scoutmaster & Eagle Scout in the Scouting organization I am dead set against this. If they do allow this to happen they might as well make us stop taking the youth protection programs that helps us protect the kids from the possible predators they would be letting into the organization. The only reason we are undergoing all the scrutiny is because we're one of the few organizations that didn't corrupt with the rest of the world as time went on. On another note if the biggest thing we have to worry about is having Carly Rae Jepsen ,and Train not do a concert for the National Jamboree I think we'll be fine.

    • wvtd

      I agree, the far left just wants to indoctrinate more children into excepting homosexuality as normal lifestyle choice, which it is not.

    • OneWV

      As an Assistant Scoutmaster and Eagle Scout, you should be congnizant of the fact that a gay person does not equate to a sexual predator. I would bet that there are homosexuals in the Boy Scouts already, and you don't even know it. What happens when they come out? I am sure they would be ostracized and shunned by all the other hypocrites. Come on people. The Boy Scouts of America should be better than this.

      • Mike D

        You should also realize that the word possible was in there as well.

    • FungoJoe

      Who is Carly Rae Jepsen and who gives a crap about Train???

      • Mike D

        My point exactly

  • Jr

    I feel more comfortable if my child were around a gay scout leader than around a Catholic priest, sad but true. We let gays fight and die for our freedom but not join the boy scouts.

    • Shawn

      Don't cross that line. You just tabbed all Catholic Priests and child molesters and gay. Don't be a fool and remember that there are teachers, parents of your kids friends that can do the same things as priests or scout leaders. Wake up!

  • Penny

    No! Kids don't have good judgement about sex at that age. The ones that would grow up straight and a gay that would play with your kid could ruin him for life, mentally. You can't undo that kind of damage!

    • Skeptic

      Really? I grew up with a gay friend and I'm not gay. What a surprise. Take your small minded bigotry and fear mongering and go back to church.

      • Ax Man

        Are you sure

        • Mike D

          Score 1 ax man on the humor scoreboard.

  • Shawn

    "i'm not sure how i feel about gay scout leaders"

    • Skeptic

      Why? Are they are evil raping murdering thieving pedophiles? Perhaps they are just like you in all other respects except one. Don't be a bigot.

      • Shawn

        Did I not express my opinion there satchmo? I guess in these days you cant do that huh?

        And I think if you read above I stated that "Just because they are gay doesn't mean the are going to molest or harm a child. I say let the kids be themselves and discuss the scout leaders in more depth."

        Dont be a jackass...listen to others opinions even if you dont like them.

  • Shawn

    Listen....i'm against gay marriage and all that but depriving a child from participating in the scouts because they "may" be gay is crazy. I'm sure how I feel about gay scout leaders. Just because they are gay doesn't mean the are going to molest or harm a child. I say let the kids be themselves and discuss the scout leaders in more depth.

  • Ax Man

    The Scouts should stick to there guns and not allow gay's, doing so will destroy the Scouts.

    • Skeptic

      Like it destroyed our military? Go back to your rock.

      • Ax Man

        Skeptic, Our military are adults, but you probably wouldn't know anything about that, would you?