EL PASO, Texas - The Boy Scouts of America made a controversial decision to allow openly gay boys into the organization. The vote came down late Thursday afternoon. Gay adults will remain barred from serving as scout leaders
Yucca Council Scout Executive David Jones told the media this region's boy scouts will accept the change in policy. This all started a couple years ago when regions in the northwest and northeast of the united states were seeing a decrease in membership. Those councils asked for a change from the 'don't ask don't tell' policy.
The Boy Scouts eventually took three nationwide surveys in which places that host boy scout meetings charters, such as Catholic and Latter Day Saints churches, voted 70 percent against openly gay scouts.
Sixty percent of scout parents and volunteers also voted against the change. But 1,400 scout representatives from all over the county passed the resolution with 61 percent.
Parents with concerns about the change asked what happens if gay scouts want to become scout leaders when they get older. This signals to many that the policy may have to change again. They also fear churches against the change could deny scouts a place to meet. This, they said, would make is harder to operate local councils.
Governor Rick Perry had this to say:
"The boys scouts of america has been built upon the values of faith and family for more than 100 years and today's decision contradicts generations of tradition in the name of political correctness. While I will always cherish my time as a scout and the life lessons I learned, I am greatly disappointed with this decision."
In response, Jones said, "Both sides of this issue agree that when a youth is in scouting they're better off. And if a scout behaves like he's suppose to, we wont have an issue with any of this anyway."
The Catholic and LDS churches accept the decision to allow openly gay scouts, but not gay scout leaders because they said the scouts is about the youth, and they didn't want religious or political beliefs to interfere with an opportunity to be a boy scout.