Texas Lawmakers Urge Boy Scouts to Maintain Traditional Values

March 4, 2013 - 5:05 PM

boy scouts

Boy Scouts members. (AP Photo)

(CNSNews.com) – More than 60 state and local Texas lawmakers signed a letter urging the Boy Scouts of America to maintain policies that support “family values and moral principles.”

“As state elected officials, we strongly encourage the Boy Scouts of America to stick with their decades of support for family values and moral principles,” the Feb. 2 letter reads. “Capitulating to the liberal social agenda not only undermines the very principles of scouting, but sets the stage for the erosion of an organization that has defined the American experience for generations of young men.”

Although the letter does not specifically reference homosexuality, it is a clear response to a Boy Scouts of America announcement saying the organization is considering lifting its ban on homosexual members.

“Currently, the BSA is discussing potentially removing the national membership restriction regarding sexual orientation,” Deron Smith, spokesman for the Boy Scouts, said in a statement on Jan. 28.

boy scouts

(Courtesy: BSA)

Smith continued, “This would mean there would no longer be any national policy regarding sexual orientation, but that the chartered organizations that oversee and deliver Scouting would accept membership and select leaders consistent with their organization’s mission, principles or religious beliefs.”

The letter from the Texas elected officials further stated that if the Boy Scouts national policy is changed to accommodate the “social left,” local organizations that still uphold the traditional policy will be vulnerable to legal actions.

“Worse still, the contemplated national policy would throw to the wolves chartering organizations and scout troops that choose to stick with scouting’s historic and legally protected policy,” the letter reads.

Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, applauded the Texas lawmakers for encouraging Scout leaders to “reaffirm their current policy on homosexuality.” Perkins also mentioned Texas Governor Rick Perry (R), who publicly opposes lifting the ban.

“Gov. Rick Perry, and now over 60 fellow elected officials in Texas, are showing the Boy Scouts that they're not alone in standing for their values,” Perkins said in a Mar. 1 statement. “As leaders from the Boy Scouts organization meet in Texas, we hope that seeing the solidarity of so many Texas leaders will encourage them to reaffirm their current policy on homosexuality.”

If the Boy Scouts of America lift the national ban on openly homosexual members, there would no longer be a national policy regarding sexual orientation.

Boy Scouts Gays

Clockwise from left, Boy Scouts Eric Kusterer, Jacob Sorah, James Sorah, Micah Brownlee and Cub Scout John Sorah hold signs at the “Save Our Scouts” Prayer Vigil and Rally in front of the Boy Scouts of America National Headquarters in Irving, Texas, Wednesday, February 6, 2013. (AP Photo/Richard Rodriguez)

This means that local units would be able to choose a policy that fits their morals and principles and families could choose a Scouting unit that coincides with their values.

CNSNews.com reported in June 2012 that the Boy Scouts had no plans to change the policy despite a petition with 275,000 signatures urging the Scouts to allow openly gay members.

“Contrary to media reports, the Boy Scouts of America has no plans to change its membership policy. The introduction of a resolution does not indicate the organization is ‘reviewing’ a policy or signal a change in direction,” according to a statement released by the Boy Scouts of America national office in June 2012.

“The BSA is a voluntary, private organization that sets policies that are best for the organization,” read the statement.  “The BSA welcomes all who share its beliefs but does not criticize or condemn those who wish to follow a different path.”