Boy Scouts delay decision on admitting gays - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Boy Scouts delay decision on admitting gays

Posted: Updated:
  • More WALB News10 HeadlinesMore News HeadlinesMore>>

  • 50-state look at how Common Core playing out in US

    50-state look at how Common Core playing out in US

    50-state look at how Common Core playing out in US

    Saturday, August 30 2014 10:00 AM EDT2014-08-30 14:00:19 GMT
    Janet Barresi, state superintendent, gestures as she speaks during a State Board of Education meeting in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, Aug. 27, 2014. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)Janet Barresi, state superintendent, gestures as she speaks during a State Board of Education meeting in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, Aug. 27, 2014. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)
    A state-by-state look at the Common Core standards:More >>
    A state-by-state look at the Common Core standards:More >>
  • Colquitt County Tempo Club seeks current and past A Capella choir members

    Colquitt County Tempo Club seeks current and past A Capella choir members

    Colquitt County Tempo Club seeks current and past A Capella choir members

    Saturday, August 30 2014 9:00 AM EDT2014-08-30 13:00:17 GMT
    (Source: MGN Online) (Source: MGN Online)
    The Colquitt County Tempo Club and the Colquitt County High School A Capella Choir would like all current and past members of the A Capella Choir to perform The National Anthem prior to the Colquitt County High School Homecoming game on Friday, September 5th.  More >>
    The Colquitt County Tempo Club and the Colquitt County High School A Capella Choir would like all current and past members of the A Capella Choir to perform The National Anthem prior to the Colquitt County High School Homecoming game on Friday, September 5th.  More >>
  • Darton College receives new honor

    Darton College receives new honor

    Friday, August 29 2014 11:37 PM EDT2014-08-30 03:37:42 GMT
    Darton State College receives a new honor.It is ranked 6th in the country among mid-sized colleges in the Center for Digital Education's annual Digital Community Colleges Survey.More >>
    Darton State College receives a new honor.It is ranked 6th in the country among mid-sized colleges in the Center for Digital Education's annual Digital Community Colleges Survey.More >>

NOMAAN MERCHANT
Associated Press
    
IRVING, Texas (AP) - The Boy Scouts of America's national executive board has delayed a decision on whether to lift its longstanding ban on gay scouts and leaders.
    
BSA said Wednesday the organization will take action on the resolution at its national meeting in May.
    
The organization said last week it was considering a shift of its policy, which has led officials to remove gay leaders and scouts. That announcement pushed years of debate over the policy to an even higher level.
    
President Barack Obama - Scouting's honorary president - spoke in favor of letting gay scouts in. Others opposed a shift. Protesters on both sides rallied at BSA headquarters in Irving, outside Dallas.
    
Scout leaders across the country will now have to decide how to handle a very delicate issue.
    
THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.
    
The Boy Scouts of America's policy excluding gay members and leaders could be up for a vote as soon as Wednesday, when the organization's national executive board meets behind closed doors under intense pressure from several sides.
    
BSA announced last week it was considering allowing troops to decide whether to allow gay membership. That news has placed a spotlight on executive board meetings that began Monday in Irving, Texas, where scouting headquarters is located.
    
BSA spokesman Deron Smith said last week that the board could take a vote Wednesday or decide to discuss the policy, but the organization would issue a statement either way. Otherwise, the board has remained silent, with reporters barred from the hotel where its meetings are taking place.
    
At nearby BSA headquarters, a handful of Scouts and leaders delivered petitions Monday in support of letting gay members join. The conservative group Texas Values, meanwhile, says it has organized a Wednesday morning prayer vigil urging the Scouts to keep their policy the same.
    
President Barack Obama, an opponent of the policy, and Texas Gov. Rick Perry, an Eagle Scout who supports it, both have weighed in.
    
"My attitude is that gays and lesbians should have access and opportunity the same way everybody else does in every institution and walk of life," said Obama, who as U.S. president is the honorary president of BSA, in a Sunday interview with CBS.
    
Perry, the author of the book "On My Honor: Why the American Values of the Boy Scouts Are Worth Fighting For," said in a speech Saturday that "to have popular culture impact 100 years of their standards is inappropriate."
    
The board faces several choices, none of which is likely to quell controversy. Standing pat would go against the public wishes of two high-profile board members - Ernst & Young CEO James Turley and AT&T Inc. CEO Randall Stephenson - who run companies with nondiscrimination policies and have said they would work from within to change the Scouts' policy.
    
Conservatives have warned of mass defections if Scouting allows gay membership to be determined by troops. Local and regional leaders, as well as the leadership of churches that sponsor troops, would be forced to consider their own policies. And policy opponents who delivered four boxes of signatures to BSA headquarters Monday said they wouldn't be satisfied by only a partial acceptance of gay scouts and leaders.
    
"We don't want to see Scouting gerrymandered into blue and red districts," said Brad Hankins, campaign director of Scouts for Equality.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)