BSA president and former CIA Directory and Defense Secretary Robert Gates has called on the organization to drop their discriminatory policy against gay scout leaders:
“I told you a year ago that I would oppose re-opening this issue during my two-year term as a president of the BSA. I had hoped then for a respite during which we could focus on healing our divisions from the 2013 decision, improving our program, strengthening our finances and ending our decline in membership.
“Nor can we ignore the social, political and juridicial changes taking place in our country – changes taking place at a pace over this past year no one anticipated. I remind you of the recent debates we have seen in places like Indiana and Arkansas over discrimination based on sexual orientation, not to mention the impending U.S. Supreme Court decision this summer on gay marriage.
“I am not asking the national board for any action to change our current policy at this meeting. But I must speak as plainly and bluntly to you as I spoke to presidents when I was director of CIA and Secretary of Defense. We must deal with the world as it is, not as we might wish it to be. The status quo in our movement’s membership standards cannot be sustained.
“We can expect more councils to openly challenge the current policy. While technically we have the authority to revoke their charters, such an action would deny the lifelong benefits of scouting to hundreds of thousands of boys and young men today and vastly more in the future. I will not take that path. “
You might recall that under Gates’ leadership, DADT was relegated to the dustbin and full equality for LGBT troops became the operating policy.