Sunday, 12 August 2012

Romney Says Boy Scouts Should Accept Homosexual Leaders

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A campaign assistant for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney confirmed that the former Massachusetts governor's opposition to the Boy Scouts' ban on homosexual leaders, which he publicly expressed in 1994, still stands. According to the Deseret News, Romney spokeswoman Andrea Saul told the Associated Press that Romney is still holding to the political stand he adopted nearly 20 years ago when he said during an unsuccessful run for Ted Kennedy's U.S. Senate that while he supported “the right of the Boy Scouts of America to decide what it wants to do on that issue,” he also felt that “all people should be able to participate in the Boy Scouts regardless of their sexual orientation.”

As reported by The New American, despite intense pressure from homosexual activists and their supporters, the Boy Scouts organization announced in July that following a two-year study of its policy it has decided to continue its perpetual ban on homosexual leaders. “The vast majority of the parents of youth we serve value their rights to address issues of same-sex orientation within their family, with spiritual advisers, and at the appropriate time and in the right setting,” explained Bob Mazzuca, the Boy Scouts' chief executive, in a prepared announcement about the decision. “While a majority of our membership agrees with our policy, we fully understand that no single policy will accommodate the many diverse views among our membership or society.”

Romney's position mirrors that of Barack Obama, whose office issued a statement August 8 saying that while “the president believes the Boy Scouts is a valuable organization that has helped educate and build character in American boys for more than a century,” he nonetheless “opposes discrimination in all forms, and as such opposes this policy that discriminates on basis of sexual orientation.” The Boy Scouts responded with a demure statement of its own saying that its leaders respect “the opinions of President Obama and appreciates his recognition that Scouting is a valuable organization. We believe that good people can personally disagree on this topic and still work together to accomplish the common good.”

Romney's own confirmation that he does not agree with the Boy Scouts' moral stand comes on the heels of his recent refusal to join other conservative leaders in their support of Chick-fil-A over its public stand for Christian values and traditional marriage. “It is almost as if the governor is going out of his way to de-motivate the conservative base,” said conservative commentator Bryan Fischer of the GOP candidate's politically motivated acquiescence to the “gay” lobby. “In fact, if he deliberately set out to dispirit evangelicals and members of the pro-family network, he could hardly do any worse.”

“Gay” activists applauded Romney's subtle addition of the pro-homosexual plank to his campaign platform, with Zach Wells of a group called Scouts for Equality announcing that he was “proud to have Governor Romney’s support on this issue amid such a polarized political climate.” Wells added his hope that the Republican presidential hopeful would “set an example of how people with differing religious beliefs can come together to support the Boy Scouts of America’s mission to serve our communities and develop tomorrow’s leaders, regardless of sexual orientation.”

Fischer emphasized the untenable moral nature of Romney's stand, noting that abundant research proves homosexual men very often sexually target boys the age of those participating in Boy Scouts and its junior program, Cub Scouts. “Gov. Romney's position, if adopted by the BSA, would put the sexual innocence of untold numbers of young boys at risk,” Fischer wrote. “It is truly an unconscionable position for a self-described 'severely conservative' candidate to take, particularly in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky scandal at Penn State.”

Fischer added that Romney's position is wildly out of step with the socially conservative base that is of crucial importance to his campaign. “If the Democratic Party is going to take a stand for homosexual marriage and the Republican Party won't stand up for traditional marriage,” he said, “then they’re abdicating their role in the culture war.”

He added that “we read stories about [Romney's] private meetings with social conservatives, and of course it's good that those conversations are taking place. But at some point, his private assurances to pro-family leaders must become public statements to the electorate or the socially conservative air will leak completely out of his balloon.”

Photo of Mitt Romney: AP Images

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