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.
Scouting for All is a 100% Volunteer 501-(c)(3) Nonprofit Organization. Every dollar donated goes toward our education and advocacy programs, and is tax deductible.
Scouting for All's National Campaign
End Discrimination Within The Boy Scouts of America
What You Can Do To Help
"In Germany they first came for the Communists and I didn't speak up because I wasn't
a Communist. Then they came for the Jews and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew. Then they came for the Unionists
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a trade Unionist. Then they came for the Catholics and I didn't speak up
because I was a Protestant. Then they came for me and by that time no one was left to speak up."
Pastor Martin Niemoller
Scouting for All's historic National Day of Protest on August 21, 2000, marked a new era in our national campaign
to end the discrimination of the Boy Scouts of America against gay and nontheist youth and adults. Steven Cozza,
Eagle Scout as a 12 year old wrote a letter to the editor stating the BSA didn't practice its own Scout Law when
they discriminated against gay youth and adults. On January 22, 1998, Steven called a press
conference and launched his national campaign petition drive to place pressure on the BSA to rescind it's policy
Steven's courageous actions have been the inspiration for the current Scouting for All movement. He dedicated his
efforts in the memory of Robin Reed a gay, 15 year old Petaluma High School student who killed himself
because he felt rejected and to all gay youth who have taken their lives because they felt like they didn't belong.
We will no longer tolerate our gay youth having to remain "invisible" out of fear. We will continue to
work towards helping to create a society where our gay youth can feel safe to live as the individuals they have
come blessed to be in this life. Steven and others who stand with him against the social injustice of the program
he loved, the Boy Scouts of America, allowed themselves to feel the pain of the Robin Reeds in this life and decided
to take a stand. The tragedy to date is that the Boy Scouts of America has not allowed themselves as an organization
to feel the pain they have caused our gay youth, to their families and friends and to all individuals who believe
justice. The BSA's immoral policy offends all who value social justice and human rights. Their policy of discrimination
is increasingly harmful to Scouting and to both gay and straight youth as well as being fundamentally contrary
to the precepts and principles for which Scouting was founded.
We are dedicating the Scouting for All National Day of Protest as a new beginning in our effort. The light of hope
will shine brighter than ever in the name of human rights. We are launching a heightened national/international
campaign calling upon individuals and groups to take action on the side of social justice and human rights. S4A
has since renamed our National Day of Protest to S4A's Annual National Rally and Recognition of Gay (GLBT) Youth
and Gay and Nontheist Scout Month. It is held each year the month of October. Scouting for All is advocating the
1. Individuals who Believe in Justice for All: It is everyone's responsibility to speak out against social
injustice, in this case the social injustice of the BSA. We must not turn our backs on those who are being discriminated
against. We encourage parents and guardians to make sure your child participates in youth organizations that value
the diversity of the human family and have inclusive policies and abide by those policies. In fact the Boy Scouts
of America is the only youth organization in America that discriminates against gay and nontheist youth and adults.
We suggest you send a letter to your local scout council and to the BSA national in Irving, Texas to inform them
that you will not be have your child join the BSA until it rescinds its policy of discrimination.
Alternative youth programs include: Boys and Girls Club, 4H, Campfire USA, and Girl Scouts USA.
2. BSA Members, Scout Units, Sponsors, Councils: Through the Scout Oath and Law, the Boy Scout Handbook,
and the Citizenship merit badge booklets, we can see that scouting teaches its members to help make the earth a
better place. Discrimination and Bigotry have never been a part of Scouting. Those in Scouting have an ethical
and moral obligation to stand against the bigotry of its current leadership.
If you are an individual member (adult leader, scout), scout unit, or a scout sponsor (charting organization e.g.
churches, service clubs, etc.) insist that your Scout unit adopt an anti-discrimination statement and send it to
the BSA and to your local Scout Council.
3. Financial Contributors United Way & Businesses: We call upon the businesses and organizations such
as the United Way who fund the BSA to follow their own business and organization's anti-discrimination policies.
Only donate/contribute funds to youth organizations that don't discriminate. Inform the Boy Scouts of America
that they must rescind their discriminatory policy against gay and nontheist youth and adults or be terminated
as a beneficiary.
4. Schools & Government: This includes the military, municipalities, schools, police and fire departments,
PTA's, city, state, and federal government. We ask that you reexamine your relationship with the BSA in light of
your own anti-discrimination policies. Insist that discrimination be prohibited by any group that uses your services
and or facilities. We ask all school districts to think about the message that you would be giving our gay and
straight students if you allowed organizations that discriminate against gay and nontheist youth such as the Boy
Scouts of America to use your school facilities and allow adult BSA leaders to recruit in your schools. Just think
about the harmful message you would be giving our gay and straight youth.
For helpful aids on working with schools in helping your local school district deal with the BSA policy of exclusion
of gay and atheist students please check out the GLSEN, Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network at
their web site: www.glsen.org or www.glsen.org/pages/sections/bsa/.
You can also contact Scouting for All at firstname.lastname@example.org for
Scouting For All asks school districts throughout the United States of America to support GSA clubs (Gay Straight
Alliance Clubs) by granting permission for students to establish them in your school district high schools.
Gay Youth often experience deep feelings of rejection and loneliness and GSAs offer our GLBTQ youth support and
our straight youth understanding and acceptance. Scouting For All has devoted our effort in the memory of
Robin Reed and to all gay youth who have taken their lives because they felt rejected, like they didn't belong.
Eagle Scout Steven Cozza and his sister Anne started a GSA at the high school he attended, Petaluma High School
in 2000. This is the same high school Robin Reed had attended. If Petaluma High School had a GSA in 1995 the year
Robin Reed took his own life, Robin may still be alive today! GSAs are saving lives! Lets embrace all of our youth
by establishing GSAs in every high school in America! The power for healing change is in your hands. Together let's
make it happen.
For information on how to start a GSA at your high school go to www.glsen.org
5. Religious Congregations and Organizations: Scouting for All is advising that as a minimum to advise all
chartering (sponsoring) organizations within your faith communities adopt policies of non-discrimination. Also
insist that any group or scout unit that uses your facilities, sign a similar statement of non-discrimination.
The heritage of strong faith and the belief that all human beings have inherent worth asks this of you: that you
be lights of hope, beacons of courage and love, and defenders of the disenfranchised.
S4A has initiated the following strategies to implement this new era of our National Campaign:
1. We will continue to use the www.scoutingforall.org web page to rally
support, educate, advocate, and to help mobilize our volunteers and members across the country and internationally.
Steven's Petition will continue to be utilized to help educate and rally support.
2. The Scouting for All Alliance for Human Rights: The "Alliance" is be made up of individual grassroots
organizers, community based organizations and national organizations committed to getting the Boy Scouts of America
to rescind its discriminatory policy, harmful to both our gay and straight youth. The Alliance is joined by a common
bond and spirit that social justice and human rights should be for all to experience. The "Alliance"
has been established in an attempt to help mobilize, network, create, and support efforts across the country and
internationally. This Alliance is a bright light of hope for both our gay and straight youth that they may someday
live in a society that values social justice, acceptance, and cherishes the diversity of the human family.
For further details on the Alliance go to www.scoutingforall.org and
click Join the Alliance.
3. Scouting for All's Regional Directors and State Directors will help mobilize, network and provide support in
the implementation of our National Campaign throughout the United States. We have divided the United States divided
into 5 regions including: Southwestern, Northwestern, Midwestern, Southern, and Northeastern. Our National S4A
headquarters is responsible for generating international advocacy and support as well as coordinating and supporting
our regional offices. We ask that you contact the Regional Director covering your region by going to the Scouting
for All home page and clicking your region on the map.
Scouting for All Board of Directors, Regional Directors, Members and Volunteers
08/26/00, amended 03/30/01, updated 07/04/04
Scouting for All, PO Box 2832, Petaluma, CA 94953-2832, tel: 707-778-0564
email: email@example.com web page: www.scoutingforall.org
Scouting For All's National Campaign
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