May Day from Scout Headquarters!
February 06, 2013 - Wednesday
People who were hoping for a resolution to the Boy Scouts membership debate will have to wait until an actual resolution is voted on by the national council in May. Earlier this morning, BSA leaders announced that the Board would push back a final decision until this spring, when a broader consensus can be reached. "In the past two weeks, Scouting has received an outpouring of feedback from the American public. 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."
Fortunately for the millions of active Scouts, the BSA intends to involve a much larger group of true stakeholders in its decision. "The roughly 1,400 voting members of the national council will take action on the resolution at the national meeting in May 2013," the organization said. That's welcome news for parents and local councils, who were reluctant to leave the policy's fate in the hands of corporate executives with political ties that run counter to the time-honored values of the Scouts. Although the road to May will be a rocky one, the decision now rests where it belongs: with the people who best appreciate the risks--and the Scouts' longstanding principles.
Like you, we're encouraged that the Board chose not to walk away from 103 years of tradition, but now the real work begins. As far as we're concerned, it's not enough that the Board postponed the decision on homosexuality. Instead, the Scouts should publicly reaffirm their current standards on homosexuality, as they did in July. Until they do, FRC will continue to rally parents and the faith-based groups chartering the majority of troops to reject any proposal that compromises their moral convictions. For now, educating Scout leaders about the dangerous fallout of a "fully inclusive" policy will be our top priority. FRC will continue to communicate with the BSA about the grave consequences that will result if the Scouts turn their backs on their common sense standards.
The threats from the Left will keep coming, but we stand united in our goal to protect children and preserve the Boy Scouts' proud heritage. Thanks to all of you who prayed, engaged, and contacted the Boy Scout headquarters! Stay tuned to FRC for the best ways you can get involved in the fight!
Panetta Gives Troops the Benefits of the Doubt
Before Secretary Leon Panetta officially leaves his job, the Defense Department is expected to announce a few parting gifts for the troops' same-sex partners. Now that "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" is history, the military is acting as if the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is as well. Since September 2011, when the policy was formally lifted, homosexuals have demanded a laundry list of perks for their significant others--just as we predicted. Although the policy hasn't been formally announced, the new privileges are expected to include access to military bases, commissaries and family services, joint-duty assignments, and military ID cards for gay and lesbian partners--regardless of whether their state recognizes same-sex "marriage." Of course, this is all in direct defiance of the Pentagon's own assurances that open homosexuality in the military wouldn't affect its benefits policy. In its own report, the DOD makes it clear: "Members of the U.S. military are eligible for and receive a wide array of benefits and support resources, both for themselves and their families. Given current law, particularly the Defense of Marriage Act, there are a number of those benefits that cannot legally be extended to gay and lesbian service members and their same-sex partners, even if they are lawfully married in a state that permits same-sex 'marriage.'" The Pentagon argues it can now extend these privileges without violating DOMA, but the reality is that the law specifically defines "spouse" as "a person of the opposite sex who is a husband or a wife." These proposed changes are a blatant attempt to force taxpayers to sanction and finance a relationship that 82% of states and 100% of the federal government don't recognize. And while the military is promising more benefits than ever, homosexual activists still aren't satisfied. When the news broke, gay groups were immediately pushing for a more radical agenda--like a military-specific nondiscrimination policy and open transgender service. Unfortunately for conservatives, the President's pick for Panetta's successor will be no help in beating back this lawlessness. In a written statement to the Senate, Chuck Hagel pledged to recant his former position and "do everything possible... to provide equal benefits to the families of all of our service members."
It's Not Easy Being Blue...
Congress may not always act responsibly, but there are plenty of members who do! Today, we honored the House and Senate leaders who stood on principle and notched a perfect 100% on FRC Action's annual scorecard. Almost 30 of the 93 congressional "True Blue" winners dropped by the Capitol Hill Club for our special reception, and it was encouraging to see the camaraderie in the room among the leaders who take the slings and arrows for the rest of us as they stand for family values.
As part of this year's event, we also welcomed new members of Congress, who will be valuable reinforcements for the pro-family cause. This year, FRC Action scored votes on everything from repealing ObamaCare and protecting DOMA to the President's court nominees and safeguarding conscience rights. I appreciate the members who took time out of their busy schedules to join us--as well as the FRC and FRC Action staff, Tom McClusky, Connie Mackey, Sherry Crater, Mike Mears, and Tim Potter, for your tireless efforts for our values. Congratulations to the 112th Congress's class of True Blue winners! Thank you for all you accomplished in the name of faith, family, and freedom.
** Join us at 5:00 p.m. (ET) for today's edition of "Washington Watch with Tony Perkins." We'll be talking about new developments in the FRC shooting and discuss the latest on the Boy Scouts and other Hill news with our good friends Congressmen Steve King (R-Iowa) and Steve Palazzo (R-Miss.). Click over to TonyPerkins.com for an American Family Radio station near you or to listen live!
*** If America wants to improve the economy, it had better focus on the family! That's what Dr. Pat Fagan advises in his new piece for The Public Discourse, "The Wealth of Nations Depends on the Health of Families."