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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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David Knapp, Eagle Scout

Dave Knapp

Dave Knapp became involved in Scouting in 1938 at age 12. He rose to Eagle Scout, Vigil Order of the Arrow, Junior Assistant Scoutmaster and Scout camp director at age 17. Following graduation from Wesleyan University in Conn., he served as Explorer Advisor in his old Scout troop and spent ten years as a professional District Scout Executive in Suffolk Co., N. Y. and Essex Co., N. J. with an outstanding record. His Scout Executive told him he was the best District Scout Executive he ever had. Marriage and responsibility for two stepdaughters, a new baby daughter, and house led him to reluctantly leave his beloved BSA to pursue a career in educational sales. He discovered his gay sexual orientation later in life and was divorced at age 60.

Because local Scout leaders knew about his professional Scouting background they asked him to become District Commissioner for the Quinnipiac(New Haven,Ct.) Council. In 1993 at age 67 he was visited by the Assistant Scout Executive plus two other Scout officials and told abruptly that he was being expelled from the Boy Scouts of America "because we have discovered that you are a homosexual." Dave was in total shock, having been deep in the closet, and had no idea that the BSA had secretly changed the policy practiced from 1910 to 1978 from sexual misconduct to simply being a homosexual. His appeals for a hearing at the regional and national level were sumarily rejected. Three weeks later the story hit the front page of the newspapers , television, and radio. Dave still believes that Scouting is the best youth program in the world, and that the need for it is greater than ever, particularly for it's values embodied in the Scout Oath and Law. He has vowed to fight the BSA on the change of policy for the rest of his life ,if need be, and to continue working to eliminate discrimination against GLBT individuals both in Scouting and the community at large.


After being expelled from Scouting in 1993 I was so happy and excited to learn about Scouting For All and Steven Cozza's courageous fight against the BSA. I could not belive that a heterosexual Scout his age could or would take on the BSA for the whole United Sates! This is a David and Goliath story if there ever was. His father, Scott, also heterosexual, is devoting his life to this cause at great sacrifice--- all for me and millions of Scouts and leaders past, present, and future --- both gay and heterosexual. The BSA has become so paranoid and fearful that they not only expelled Scott but other heterosexual Scout leaders who dared to publicly object to the policy. The National BSA is still resisting any change and return to the policy practiced from 1910 to 1978 based upon misconduct , not who you are. They even rejected a fair, rationale,
face-saving compromise proposed by nine big city Councils which would allow all opposing parties to follow their religious beliefs regarding homosexual boys and leaders. It is going to be a long battle, which the BSA and local Councils for sure, wish would go away.

Thousands of patriotic Americans, including thousands of former Scouts, have come to realize that the BSA is no longer following it's own 90 year traditions of truthfulness, non discrimination, welcoming ALL boys, and the original meaning of the Scout Oath and Law. The real pain and serious harm being done to hundreds of thousands of Scouts and leaders, and their families, is tragic and so pointless. Whether the policy is enforced or not at the local Council and Scout Unit level, think about
what message is being sent to the 3 million plus heterosexual Scouts about the gay Scouts and leaders in their Units. - out of 15 to 60 plus Scouts in a Unit there certainly are a few who are or will come to know that they are gay! Will you join Scouting For All with your membership contribution and local support? In the long run we will win because as Steven Spielberg said when he resigned from the National BSA Advisory Board, "We are right and they are wrong."




Scouting For All is not an alternative scouting program.
We are an education and advocacy organization reaching out to gay and nontheist youth and adults in our effort to get the Boy Scouts of America to rescind its exlusionary policy.

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