The Daily Gamecock

Boy Scouts’ anti-gay views need overhaul

Sexual preference should not deter chance to serve


Until recently, the Boy Scouts of America has had an exclusionary nationwide policy banning openly gay scouts and troop leaders. Exceedingly outdated and discriminatory, the policy is long overdue for a change in how it approaches its mission of “preparing young people to make ethical and moral choices over their lifetimes.” It is especially important for young boys dealing with the adversities of breaking the social norms set by our society to know that they can have a tremendous support system like the Boy Scouts of America.

Though many gay rights activists were thrilled with the possibility of change, Southern Baptist leaders were enraged, saying that the policy’s approval would likely embolden them to support other boys’ organizations, according to the State. Southern Baptists believe homosexuality to be a sin, but seem to forget that discrimination is also a sin. If they are so concerned with upholding the morality of BSA, they should evaluate their own practices first.

It is unfair to deny someone a chance to serve their community and better themselves because of their sexual preference. The Scout Oath encourages men “to help other people at all times,” a wholly contradictory statement to the organization’s current practices. Discrimination is the opposite of advancement, and the BSA isn’t fulfilling its mission if it refuses to help someone based on a personal lifestyle choice. Every individual should have the option of being a part of something that encourages personal growth and becoming a better citizen, no matter his or her race, social status or sexual preference.