Boy Scouts end national ban on gay scoutmasters, but churches don’t have to go along

Bowing to pressure from gay rights groups, the Boy Scouts of America voted Monday to end its longstanding ban on openly gay scout leaders.

But in a compromise that’s likely to only cause more controversy down the road, the Scouts left the decision allows local units sponsored by churches opposed to homosexuality to restrict leadership roles to those “whose beliefs are consistent with their own,” according to USA Today.

The vote came after former Boy Scouts President Robert Gates – the same guy who oversaw the end to the military’s ban on openly gay men and women for President Obama – called for an end to the Scouts’ ban during a national meeting in May.

“I truly fear that any other alternative will be the end of us as a national movement,” Gates said at the time, according to the Los Angeles Times.

But while the Scouts’ “religious exemption” was more leeway than the Obama administration is willing to give Catholic nuns who don’t want to pay for birth control, it’s not at all clear it will be enough to keep major religious supporters of the Scouts — like the Mormon church — working with the organization.

“The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is deeply troubled by today’s vote,” the Mormon church said in a statement after the announcement, according to The New York Times.

“When the leadership of the church resumes its regular schedule of meetings in August, the century-long association with scouting will need to be examined.”

The vote drew an avalanche of social media response, some supportive, some critical, and a good deal of mockery.

More radical leftists, though didn’t think the ruling decision went far enough. They never do, though.

(Don’t think that hasn’t occurred to the White House already, ma’am.)

Vociferous opponents of the change, meanwhile, predicted the decision will bring about exactly what Gates claims to fear — the end of the Scouts in the long run.

And, of course, there’s the mockery.

 

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