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Petition Seeks To Lift Boy Scouts’ Anti-Gay Ban

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MODESTO (CBS13) – The Boy Scouts may soon allow gay scouts and gay scout leaders, and that could clear the way for thousands of men to come back.

The debate is nothing new, but activists hope the Boy Scouts organization will change its stance on homosexual troop leaders with the help of one national leader.

A member of the Boy Scouts of America national board is on a mission to lift the ban on gay scout leaders after a lesbian den mom was kicked out because of her sexuality.

A petition with more than a quarter million signatures was presented to the board the same day a resolution was introduced at a national board meeting earlier this month.

Modesto scout executive Richard McCartney says the policy is reviewed routinely.

“Unequivocally it’s not going to change any time in the near future. It will be evaluated as it always is as we continue to evaluate our policies,” said McCartney.

While there is a push for change, some parents say they would rather keep tradition alive.

“I wouldn’t feel comfortable with it,” said Shawna Peterson, a mother. “I feel like as a traditional rules of Boy Scouts, it should stay what they have made it where a gay father wouldn’t need be a leader.”

Local chapters follow the rules created on a national level and McCartney hasn’t heard of anything to allow gay Scout leaders.

“It’s an evolving process, but from my position I haven’t heard that there’s an impending change,” said McCartney. “The Boy Scouts’ general position is that we can have very good people with different issues on this topic and others, and still work together amicably.”

Supporters are using the Internet to gain momentum and are even forming a new organization to rally support.

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