Let People Be Who They Are

Student OpinionHe was a good boy scout. He earned all his badges when he was supposed to. He attended every campout and always stayed after to help clean up.

He volunteered whenever his schedule would let him and strove to help anyone who needed it.

The only difference between him and any other boy scout is this: He is gay.
It was because of this difference that over the summer the National Boy Scout Association asked him to leave the organization because his sexual orientation went against the strong Christian-fundamental foundation of the organization and its supporters.

This is what happened to one student at Wilde Lake High School whose name will not be mentioned. It is also something that has happened to boy scouts across the country.

Let it be known that gay boy scouts are not lepers, nor are they ripe with the bubonic plague. Their arms don’t fall off on scouting trips and their legs aren’t covered with pus-filled boils.

Being gay has not made them incapable of hiking up mountains or prevented them from kayaking like all of the other boy scouts.

Being gay hasn’t hurt anyone and it most certainly hasn’t caused any harm. Being gay was simply offensive to the troop leaders.

And now, because his “state of being” offended them and because he cannot change how he is inside, cannot change his nature, he has been refused the prestigious honor of Eagle Scout. He will not have the opportunity to gain any one of several Eagle Scout scholarships or to put Eagle Scout on his college resume.

Unfortunately, the National Boy Scouts Association is not the only organization that has discriminated against gay people. Cracker Barrel, Chik-Fil-A, and The Salvation Army are among others who have practiced blatant and unfair discrimination against gays.

We spend all this time preaching to kindergartners that “everyone is equal” and that it is wrong to “judge a book by its cover.” We teach them that everyone should “be themselves” and “express how they feel.” But then in the real world, big organizations are still sending a “don’t ask, don’t tell” message.

One view might be that the National Boy Scout Association is their own organization and they have the right to decide who is a member and who isn’t. But does this does not give them the right to discriminate based on sexuallity.