While Boy Scouts postpone decision on gay members, most Americans say gay ban should be dropped
February 6, 2013 /LGBT News/ The Boy Scouts of America decided to put off a decision on whether to lift a national ban of gay members and leaders, saying the issue of sexual orientation was too complex and needed more time for study.
Facing pressure from many scouts and parents across the country to end the 100-year-old policy, the BSA Executive Board was expected to potentially repeal it, leaving the decision up to individual troops. But the call will now be left up to the National Council - made up of about 1,400 members - who will wait until their May meeting to vote on the ban.
"After careful consideration and extensive dialogue within the Scouting family, along with comments from those outside the organization, the volunteer officers of the Boy Scouts of America's National Executive Board concluded that due to the complexity of this issue, the organization needs time for a more deliberate review of its membership policy," the Scouts said in a statement.
In the meantime, a national poll released on Wednesday showed the public has made up its mind, saying the youth group's ban on gay members must end. By a margin of 55 percent to 33 percent, respondents to the telephone poll by Quinnipiac University said the century-old youth organization should drop its policy against openly gay members.
A broad array of respondents, male or female, Catholic or Protestant, favored accepting scouts regardless of their sexual orientation, the poll showed. However, white evangelical Protestants opposed gay scouts by a margin of 56 percent to 33 percent.
The poll, which reached 1,772 registered voters on land lines and cell phones between January 30 and February 4, had a margin of error of plus or minus 2.3 percentage points.