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Connie Davis, former Assistant Scoutmaster Speaks Out, Troop 294, Vashon Island, Washington

November 6, 2002
19026 Beall Rd. SW
Vashon Island, WA, 98070

To: Mr. Roy L. Williams, Chief Scout Executive
National Headquarters Boy Scouts of America
PO Box 152079
Irving, Texas 75015-2079


I am writing to you again because I am appalled by the actions of the Boy Scouts of America and my local council.

I have been an assistant scoutmaster for three years and I was the high adventure coordinator for our troop for two years. I have donated countless hours to BSA. I have been writing to the local and national leadership for two years without satisfactory response. I have tried to do what the Scout Handbook teaches: "If he (the scout) thinks rules and laws are unfair, he tries to have them changed in an orderly manner rather than disobeying them." To fulfill that ideal, I joined Scouting for All and the New England Coalition for Inclusive Scouting. I used to donate to Friends of Scouting and United Way, but I stopped doing that two years ago and have written letters to both groups to explain why.

The time has come for me to stop trying to work to change the organization from within. I can no longer support the Boy Scouts because of its ongoing discrimination against homosexuals and atheists. My family values tolerance. I am dismayed that the district and national organization feels it is their duty to judge others by their beliefs or sexual orientation, and I will no longer be an adult leader for BSA activities.

The BSA I could support is the one that published the following words in the Boy Scout Handbook. Page 49 urges scouts to "Accept who you are, and celebrate the fact that you don't have to be just like everyone else. Real friends will respect the ideas, interests and talents that make you special." On the following page the handbook states, "Kindness is a sign of true strength. To be kind you must look beyond yourself and try to understand the needs of others. Take time to listen to
people and imagine being in their place."

Which will it be? The Boy Scout handbook or a national leadership out of touch with a significant portion of its adult leadership? The solution is so clear: Allow the charter system to work. Let every chartering organization decide which leaders are appropriate for the troop they sponsor.


Connie Davis, former Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 294, Vashon Island, Washington
Mr. Ed Whitacre Jr., President Boy Scouts of America
Gregg Shields, BSA Spokesperson, National Headquarters BSA
Donald G. Oblander, Relationships Division, National Headquarters BSA
Dr. Lawrence Ray Lawrence, Chairman, BSA Relationships Committee Brad
Farmer, Scout Executive, Chief Seattle Council, Seattle, WA

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