TribLIVE

| USWorld


 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Holder says Boy Scouts perpetuates anti-gay bias

Daily Photo Galleries

By The Los Angeles Times
Wednesday, June 11, 2014, 12:01 a.m.
 

WASHINGTON — Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. said on Tuesday that the Boy Scouts of America carries on “the worst stereotypes” by barring gay people from becoming Scout leaders.

“The continuation of a policy that discriminates against gay adult leaders — by an iconic American institution — only preserves and perpetuates the worst kind of stereotypes,” Holder said in a speech to the gay civil rights group Lambda Legal in Washington.

Holder did not announce any legal action against the Boy Scouts. A Supreme Court decision 14 years ago said the Scouts, as a private entity, had a right to discriminate against gays.

Last year the Irving, Texas-based organization softened its policy toward gays in a compromise move. After initially saying it intended to allow gays to serve as both Scouts and Scout leaders, it instead allowed openly gay boys to participate in Scouting but continued to prohibit those 18 and older from serving as leaders.

In an approach similar to the “don't ask don't tell” arrangement in place in the U.S. military until three years ago, the group has said it will dismiss gay leaders only if they publicly announce their sexual orientation.

Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates, after he was elected president of the Boy Scouts last month, said he would have preferred that the organization open up completely to gays but that he would not push for it at the moment.

Boy Scouts spokesman Deron Smith issued a conciliatory statement.

“We recognize there are many opinions on these matters,” he said. “The Boy Scouts of America believes that to disagree does not mean to disrespect; we remain focused on delivering the nation's foremost youth development program.”

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.

 

 
 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read Nation

  1. ‘Drink of the Devil’ unites formerly feuding families
  2. Balloonists smash records with trans-Pacific flight
  3. Prospective juror in Tsarnaev trial cites sympathy for suspect in Boston Marathon bombing
  4. NASA satellite to track water in soil
  5. Drivers, return to your car dealers for 2nd airbag fix
  6. States have marked drop in juvenile prison populations
  7. Teen girl Hernandez killed by Denver police once cited for resisting arrest
  8. Deportation relief applications for illegal immigrants available soon
  9. Internet rules in line for big shift
  10. Secretary of State Kerry says Cuba talks offer chance to improve lives
  11. Brooklyn warehouse goes up in smoke