Activist Groups Urge Obama to Reject Boy Scout Honor
From Fox News:
Activist groups, including Scouting for All, urge President Obama not to accept the honorary Presidency of the Boy Scouts of America until they stop discriminating.
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In a message dated 2/2/01 12:53:12 AM Pacific Standard Time,
Unitarian Church in Portland, Maine Held a Public Forum: Homosexuality and the BSA
On October 23, 2000, a public forum was held at the Unitarian Church in Portland, Maine to address the topic, "Homosexuality
and the Boy Scouts: What Is a Proper Role Model?"
Participants were Dr. John Buehrens, president of the Unitarian-Universalist Association (UUA) in Boston, and John
Rankin, president of the Theological Education Institute in Hartford. They gave opening statements, dialogued together,
and took questions from the audience of some 70 people.
Dr. Buehrens argued that it is immoral to exclude gay Scoutmasters, based on the belief that our view of God is
free to evolve and change.
Mr. Rankin argued, based on the biblical Genesis in chapters 1-2, that only a man who respects the integrity of
heterosexual marriage can be a proper role model for a boy.
The forum may be heard over the internet on the website of the UUA at:
A transcript of the forum is also available:
Some excerpts from the forum are shown below.
John Rankin: "If we're truly tolerant, the Boy Scouts are free to be who they are. And if they have the freedom
of association that the U.S. Supreme Court has agreed with, they have that freedom no matter how much we agree
or disagree with it."
John Buehrens: "Why should the Boy Scouts take an entire church, like my own, and tell us, no, no, if you
teach your kids a different attitude toward human sexuality, you and your church and your kids have no place in
Scouting. Then they've fallen into religious discrimination."
John Rankin: "What is it that secures human rights that are equal for all people? My simple observation is,
only the biblical ethics rooted in Genesis 1 and 2 actually give the freedom for dissent in a free society."
John Buehrens: "If the Boy Scouts want to become a narrower and more religious organization, if indeed the
religious politics that they play are as relentless as that, then I'm just sad. I could have wished for more respect
for my point of view within a civic organization, but I guess it's not to be had. And I wish my nephews could take
part in Scouts, but they won't."
John Rankin: "I don't want one inch greater freedom to say what I believe, than I first give to you to say
what you believe. That's a biblical ethic."
John Buehrens: "I've been heartened tonight by some of the distinctions we've been able to make. We both have
a respect for different theological views. We believe in the worth and dignity of all people."