Laurel Highlands Council: Reject the Boy Scouts of America's anti-gay policy
  • Petitioned Michael Surbaugh

This petition was delivered to:

Scout Executive, Laurel Highlands Council
Michael Surbaugh
Customer Service Manager, Laurel Highlands Council
Mollieann Gray
Director of Program, Laurel Highlands Council
William Park
Director of Development, Laurel Highlands Council
Amy Franz

Laurel Highlands Council: Reject the Boy Scouts of America's anti-gay policy

    1. Carri Finkbeiner
    2. Petition by

      Carri Finkbeiner

      Pittsburgh, PA

We, the scouts and community members of Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania urge the Laurel Highlands Council to reject the Boy Scouts of America's anti-gay policy.

Among service organizations, the Boy Scouts are increasingly isolating themselves with their prohibition on gay youth and leaders. Organizations including the Girl Scouts of America, the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, as well as the 4H Club all welcome gay kids as well as adult leaders.

We love the Boy Scouts and everything the organization has done for the young men in our community. That's why we urge you to speak out against this ban and adopt an inclusive policy like other troops, packs, councils, and lodges across the country have done -- so the Boy Scouts can maintain its relevancy, improve recruitment, and truly live by the principles it teaches its members.

Please end the ban on gay scouts and leaders immediately.

Recent signatures

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    1. Reached 750 signatures

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • Jarek Jasinski AMBRIDGE, PA
      • 10 months ago

      I strongly believe no one should be excluded from Boy Scouts of America simply because of their race, creed, or orientation.

      What type of message does that send our youth when an organization that is helpful to so many hates a group of people simply because they are who they are?

      I was in Boy Scouts of America since age five, and I am gay. I left the BSA at age 15 to pursue other activities, but I lived in fear that I would be outted and kicked out of the organization I was in since I was a child.

      I will not sit here and ignore what is going on when people who have not done anything wrong are discriminated against!

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    • Krystal Boburchock FRIEDENS, PA
      • over 1 year ago

      focus on what matter which is the scouts and the volunteers NOT their personal life!

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    • Deborah Scotto PITTSBURGH, PA
      • over 1 year ago

      Discrimination is counter to everything the Boy Scouts stands for.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Terri Schenfeld JOHNSTOWN, PA
      • over 1 year ago

      My Physician husband and I have raised our now adult two children to believe we are all children of God with all of his attributes, intellect, diversity, strengths and weakness in varying measure. My recently passed 96 year old father was a scout and leader in the 1930’s, my son a cub scout and daughter one of the first explorer scouts in the region. All had life enriching experiences and yet all are disdainful of the ban on Gays, atheists etc. Our daughter recently publically revealed she was gay while expressing support to end the ban on gays in the BSA. She received a derogatory, denigrating e-mail from someone representing themselves as a local BSA charter group calling her an “abomination living a hedonistic lifestyle.” As such they claimed she damaged her professional parents regional reputation and must be estranged from them. Outrageous!

      Her pain and our anger lies with knowing the writer and three who un-friended her and our disappointment in them as her pseudo friends, Americans, and alleged forgiving prayerful Christians and BSA members. We are ashamed of them. We could not be more proud of our daughter who is battling low vision blindness, worked her way through graduate school, who was an employee advocate for OCNA, is a successful epidemiologist who is also a god mother to children of a Mormon family and children of a Presbyterian family! That which we and our son and daughter contribute to humanity should not be denigrated by such intolerance eschewed and reinforced by the policies of the BSA.

      We are well aware of the origins and history of the scouts. The original handbook used a lot of material from Baden-Powell's handbook.

      The new BSA office on 5th Avenue opened in January 1911 with West at the helm and the movement began to grow at a rapid pace. One of West's first tasks was to revise the British-based program outline in Seton's handbook and adapt it for American boys. West was instrumental in expanding the third part of the Scout Oath:

      To help other people at all times; to keep myself physically strong, mentally awake and morally straight.

      He also pushed to add three parts to the Scout Law: brave, clean, and reverent. He then pressed article III of the constitution of the BSA, now known as the religious principle:

      Boy Scouts of America believes that no member can grow into the best kind of citizen without recognizing an obligation to God.

      Executive Board accepted it with the stipulation that the Boy Scouts would not discriminate on the basis of race or creed.

      Except for the discriminatory and un-American ban on atheists and homosexuals, the BSA has so much to offer society and young people in these times.

      End the hateful ban on gays and atheists.

      Why is this important to you? (Optional)

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    • Kimberly O'Connor PITTSBURGH, PA
      • over 1 year ago

      I have 3 scouts. If one of them is gay, that doesn't make him any less of a good kid or any more prone to criminality than anyone else. Homosexuality is not pedophilia.

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