Gay rights ally Zach Wahls has denied that allowing openly gay members in the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) is about keeping politics and sex out of the program.

Under proposed changes expected to be voted on next month, the Boy Scouts would end its ban on gay scouts but not leaders.

During a CNN segment, Wahls, the 21-year-old founder of Scouts for Equality, went head-to-head with John Stemberger, the founder of, the coalition of Christian conservatives formed to lobby the Boy Scouts on the issue, and the president of the Florida Family Policy, a group opposed to gay rights.

Stemberger asserted that the proposed policy change would “destroy scouting as we know it.”

“The new proposal requires every scouting unit to foster open homosexuality amongst its boys,” Stemberger argued. “And that just disrespects the religious faiths and traditions of the vast majority of churches that sponsor these units.”

“Full participation is not good enough for the gay activists, they want to promote the gay agenda. And that's just what's inappropriate. It distracts from scouting's mission. And we say no sex and politics in scouting. And this proposal does just that.”

Wahls disagreed, saying that his lesbian mother “wasn't waving a rainbow flag” as den mother to his troop.

“When people try to say that this is about open or avowed homosexuality, that's really just a code word for the problem that they have with gay people. Being an open gay person is not a whole lot different from being a closeted gay person. Except for the fact that you have someone trying to lie and violate the very first part of the Scout law, which is that a Scout is trustworthy.” (The video is embedded on this page. Visit our video library for more videos.)

(Related: Mormon church endorses Boy Scouts proposal to end gay ban.)