Oklahomans Divided On Boy Scouts' Decision To Allow Openly Gay T - NewsOn6.com - Tulsa, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports - KOTV.com |

News

Oklahomans Divided On Boy Scouts' Decision To Allow Openly Gay Troops

Posted: Updated:
Thursday night, the Boy Scouts of America announced its decision to accept openly gay boys as scouts. Thursday night, the Boy Scouts of America announced its decision to accept openly gay boys as scouts.
"Definitely don't agree with the policy change," said Rich Faust. "Definitely don't agree with the policy change," said Rich Faust.
Toby Jenkins, Director of Oklahoman for Equality, and who was a boy scout for several years, said now boys who would have been in scouting anyway, can feel respected and accepted. Toby Jenkins, Director of Oklahoman for Equality, and who was a boy scout for several years, said now boys who would have been in scouting anyway, can feel respected and accepted.
TULSA, Oklahoma -

An organization with more than 3 million members is changing a policy that's been in place for more than 100 years. Thursday night, the Boy Scouts of America announced its decision to accept openly gay boys as scouts.

We tried to contact dozens of scout leaders Friday, but only one was willing to speak with us.

He said scouting is a strong tradition in his family, but it's one he plans to stop, following the ruling.

"Definitely don't agree with the policy change," said Rich Faust.

Faust is the Scout Master for Troop 234 in Broken Arrow, and helps oversee 30 young boys, including his son.

2/5/2013 Related Story: Oklahomans Weigh In On Boy Scouts' Reconsideration Of Gay Ban

"I think most of them will disassociate the same way we will," he said.

Faust said his decision stems from an oath he promised to uphold: "To keep oneself physically strong, mentally awake and morally straight."

He said he's, "standing up for the values that the boy scouts have stood up for 103 years."

Toby Jenkins, Director of Oklahoman for Equality, and who was a boy scout for several years, sees it another way.

"[Gays have] always been there," Jenks said. "They've never felt like they could be honest with their scout masters."

Jenkins said, while the decision is overdue, his organization is thankful for the outcome.

"Everything that's available to every other young person, that door is now available and open to them," he said.

He said this will allow young gay boys to be valued and respected.

"It clears up any ambiguity or any suggestion that you're not good enough because of some identity trait," Jenks said.

Roughly 1,400 Boy Scout leaders gathered in Texas for the secret ballot this week, and 61 percent of them voted to end the ban.

Following the decision, the organization released this statement: "The Boy Scouts of America will not sacrifice its mission...by allowing the organization to be consumed by a single, divisive, and unresolved societal issue...While people have different opinions about this policy, we can all agree that kids are better off when they are in Scouting."

The resolution is expected to take effect starting January 1, 2014.

While it will allow openly gay troops, leaders who are openly gay will not be allowed to participate in the organization.

Special Features

Community Calendar

Find out what's going on around town and submit events!

Share

See it! Shoot it! Send it! Share your weather pics and videos with NewsOn6.com!

iPhone App

Get breaking news, weather, sports & video directly on your iPhone.

Mobile Alerts

Get breaking news, headlines, weather alerts & more on your cell phone.

TV Schedule

Need to know what's on TV? Check out our television schedule.

Live Radar

WARN Interactive
Powered by WorldNow
News On 6
303 N. Boston Ave.
Tulsa, OK 74103
TULSA'S OWN TM
GREEN COUNTRY'S OWN TM
Oklahoma's Own Newson6.com is proud to provide Oklahomans with timely and relevant news and information, sharing the stories, pictures and loves of Oklahomans across our great state including Tulsa's Own and Green Country's Own.
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014, WorldNow and KOTV. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.