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Two Senators, “Proud Eagle Scouts,” Urge Boy Scouts To Allow Gay Members

5 February 2013 No Comment

“We don't believe anyone should be denied the opportunity to participate in the amazing and important experience that is Scouting,” Sens. Jeff Merkley and Sherrod Brown write.

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Image by Tom Pennington / Getty Images

WASHINGTON — As the Boy Scouts of America consider ending the organizational ban on gay scouts and leaders, two senators — both Eagle Scouts — sent a letter to the group’s head asking the organization “to adopt inclusive membership and leadership policies that will allow for all Americans to participate in the Boy Scouts.”

Sen. Sherrod Brown of Ohio and Sen. Jeff Merkley of Oregon noted the experience and skills they gained through Boy Scouts in the letter, provided to BuzzFeed on Monday evening. The pair told Wayne Brock, the chief scout executive, “We urge you to pursue a path which recognizes that all Americans should be welcomed into the Scouting family, regardless of sexual orientation.”

Although both senators have publicly expressed their opposition to the policy in the past, this is the first time either one has approached the Boy Scouts directly urging a change to the policy.

The Scouts' National Executive Board and Committee meetings began Monday, but a decision on the gay ban is not expected until Wednesday.

The senators' letter, dated Feb. 1, comes as President Barack Obama also spoke out in support of the Boy Scouts ending the gay ban on Sunday.

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