A day after the Boy Scouts of America
reaffirmed its policy of excluding openly gay scouts and leaders,
Jennifer Tyrrell delivered more than 300,000 petition signatures
calling on the organization to end its ban.
The organization said it was upholding
the policy after conducting a confidential two-year review.
Deron Smith, the Scouts' national
spokesman, told the AP that an 11-member committee concluded that the
gay ban is “absolutely the best policy” for the organization.
Tyrrell launched a Change.org petition
in April to bring awareness of the policy after she was ousted as den
leader of her son's Boy Scout troop because she is a lesbian.
She delivered the petition to the Boy
Scouts' national headquarters in Dallas.
“This movement doesn't stop because
11 anonymous men behind closed doors made a decision to keep
discrimination in place,” Tyrrell
said. “This petition may have started out for me and my son,
but it's grown into something much bigger. Something much more
important. Today, when you read through the comments on my petition,
you can read the stories of literally thousands of scouts, scout
leaders and former scouts who are hoping the Boy Scouts of America
will take this moment and end this policy of discrimination against
Also on Wednesday, gay rights activist
Zach Wahls announced a
Change.org petition calling on the Boy Scouts to allow its
executive board to vote on a previously introduced resolution which
would give individual charter organizations the right to decide for
themselves whether to accept openly gay members and leaders.
Two members of the national executive
board – Ernst & Young CEO James Turley and AT&T CEO Randall
Stephenson – have publicly announced their opposition to the ban.
“One of the core values of scouting
is trustworthiness. The three million members of the Boy Scouts
deserve to see formal documentation describing who the members of
this subcommittee are, how they reached their conclusion, what
exactly that conclusion is, when it was reached and to whom these
people are responsible,” Wahls said. “Until that happens, color
me highly skeptical about anything that this committee has or has not