Wednesday, August 03, 2005

High Ranking Boy Scout Official dismissed for being gay

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According to an article in "Mother Jones" magazine, Dennis St. Jean has become the highest ranking and longest serving Boy Scouts official or member kicked out of the Scouting Program for being gay. St. Jean was the General Manager of Sea Base in the Florida Keys but had served in various high ranking leadership positions in the Boy Scouts of America, including at its national headquarters in Irving, Texas. According to the article, on January 28, 2005 "a representative from Irving came to Florida and presented him with the "evidence": a copy of his bill from Lighthouse Court Gay Guesthouses, where he had vacationed months before. (St. Jean believes the bill was obtained by a disgruntled Sea Base employee who had somehow found out about the trip.) Days later, a registered letter from Irving stated that the BSA had "lost confidence" in St. Jean's ability to serve as an employee." ===== How long must the Boy Scouts of America sacrifice the well-needed support and expertise of its members, leaders and officials for its bigoted and unethical discriminatory membership policies? Since when did being gay make someone unable to tie Boy Scout knots, make a campfire, pitch a tent or do many of the other thousands of Scout-related skills? Since when did being gay make a person somehow less worthy to be a part of something bigger and greater than themselves? As the article points out, the Boy Scouts will be forced to change their policies as soon as their membership shows an even greater drop than it has so far.... and starts to hurt the organization's money purse.