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Scouts are warned that allowing gays could impact religious liberty

DALLAS (AP) — Three religious liberty law firms are warning leaders of the Boy Scouts of America that lifting the ban on gay scouts and scoutmasters would jeopardize church-based troops that support the current policy.

In a letter to top Boy Scout officials, Liberty Institute, Liberty Counsel and the Alliance Defending Freedom note that the Supreme Court upheld the ban as part of scouting's self-defined mission to instill morals, so making gay membership optional would suggest the Boy Scouts no longer consider homosexuality immoral. The letter says that would expose scout troops that disagree to discrimination lawsuits they can't afford.

Meanwhile, scouts and their families delivered a petition to the Boy Scouts of America headquarters urging an end to the ban on gays. They said the petition includes 1.4 million signatures.

Online: http://blog.libertyinstitute.org/2013/02/the-boy-scouts-threat-to-religious.html

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260-a-12-(Kelly Shackelford, president of Liberty Institute, in AP interview)-"fend for themselves"-Kelly Shackelford, president of Liberty Institute, says the Boys Scouts of America's exclusion of gays was upheld by a Supreme Court decision that would no longer protect local scout troops if the ban is lifted. (4 Feb 2013)

<<CUT *260 (02/04/13)>> 00:12 "fend for themselves"

262-a-12-(Kelly Shackelford, president of Liberty Institute, in AP interview)-"homosexual scout leaders"-Kelly Shackelford, president of Liberty Institute, says if the Boy Scouts lift their ban on gays, local scout troops could be sued to go along. (4 Feb 2013)

<<CUT *262 (02/04/13)>> 00:12 "homosexual scout leaders"

261-a-10-(Kelly Shackelford, president of Liberty Institute, in AP interview)-"and religious organizations"-Kelly Shackelford, president of Liberty Institute, says by the Boy Scouts of America would expose church-based troops that don't admit gays to discrimination lawsuits if the national policy is changed. (4 Feb 2013)

<<CUT *261 (02/04/13)>> 00:10 "and religious organizations"

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