Boy Scouts of America consider proposal that would allow gay scouts, but not leaders

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The Boy Scouts of America national leadership has proposed to admit openly gay boys as members but not openly gay leaders or volunteers. The policy will be voted by 1,400 members at a National Council Meeting in May.

John Stemberger, the founder of, is against allowing gay members into the BSA because he thinks the organization will lose a lot of funding.

"A lot of churches would not be able, in good faith, to continue their chartership," Stemberger said. "What will be a big hit are the family foundations and the big major donors. I think the BSA stands to lose 10 times more money if they make the change than if they don't make the change."

Zach Wahls, the director of Scouts for Equality, an organization that has garnered 1,766,086 signatures opposing the current LGBT ban, feels that the BSA wasn't receiving a lot of funding anyway.

"If you look at where corporate America is, only one in seven major U.S. corporations currently financially support the Boy Scouts of America," said Wahls. "You had Intel, the BSA's largest corporate donor, pull their donations from the Boy Scouts where $400,000 because they said the scouting's discriminatory ban was out of step with their values."

There are other reasons why some people oppose admitting gay boy scouts. Their concerns range from possible abuse to sleeping arrangements on camping trips, but Stemberger said those issues could all be resolved if the organization adopted a "don't ask, don't tell" approach.

"What they (the BSA) ban is open homosexuality. That's different than just being a homosexual and being gay and kind of acting normally," Stemberger said. "Open homosexuality is openly promoting a gay agenda."

Wahls feels that lying about your sexual orientation refutes one of the major principles of the organization: trustworthiness.

Anne Bergman, a mother in Sherman Oaks, has a son who was a boy scout and wishes the whole debate would end.

"It really should be based on who the individual is, not who they happen to love," said Bergman.

The debate will continue until the vote on May 22nd.