Monday, January 22, 2018

Lesbian Scout leader ousted in Ohio; parents upset

BRIDGEPORT, Ohio — The first-graders in Ohio Pack 109's Tiger Scouts didn't know or care their den mother was a lesbian — until the Boy Scouts of America threw her out over the organization's ban on gays.

Now, parents who were aware of Jennifer Tyrrell's sexual orientation well before she took the boys on campouts and helped them carve race cars have rallied to her defense in a case that has reignited the debate over the Scouts' policy.

"I teach my children to judge people on their actions," said Rob Dunn of Bridgeport, a village of about 2,000 across the Ohio River from Wheeling, W. Va., "whether you agree with their lifestyle or not."

The Boy Scouts of America, whose oath calls for members to be "morally straight," maintains that as a private organization it has the right to exclude gays and atheists. That stance was upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court in 2000.

Because of the policy, Tyrrell said she only reluctantly let her 7-year-old son join in Bridgeport, where she lives with her partner and their four children. Told, she said, by the local cub master that it didn't matter that she is a lesbian, she was drafted to lead the pack in September.

Tyrrell was removed in April, after she says she was asked to be treasurer of the local Boy Scout troop — which oversees Tiger Scouts, Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts — and she questioned the finances. She said the Boy Scout Council for the region told her she had to resign because she is gay.

Tyrrell said she felt betrayed. So did parents, who organized a protest last week. They demanded Tyrrell be reinstated.

"The only people who were hurt were the kids," Dunn said.

Comments

Focus shifts to executions in Japan's 1995 sarin gas attack

More than two decades after poison gas attacks in Tokyo's subways killed 13 people, the stage has shifted to the execution of 13 people convicted in the crime
Updated: 12 minutes ago

Guards blocking prisons around France in week 2 of protest

Protesting guards are blocking some of France's 188 prisons as the conflict triggered by attacks on guards enters its second week
Updated: 16 minutes ago

France's Sanofi buys US hemophilia specialist Bioverativ

France-based drugmaker Sanofi is buying U.S. hemophilia specialist Bioverativ for $11.6 billion in a deal that Sanofi says will boost its profile for fighting rare diseases
Updated: 21 minutes ago

Purple Heart returned to WWII soldier's family

Tennessee's state treasurer says a missing Purple Heart medal earned more than 70 years ago has been returned to the soldier's family
Updated: 22 minutes ago
Pence kicks off Israel visit with Netanyahu meeting

Pence kicks off Israel visit with Netanyahu meeting

Vice President Mike Pence has arrived for a meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
Updated: 27 minutes ago
Pence kicks off Israel visit with Netanyahu meeting

Pence kicks off Israel visit with Netanyahu meeting

Vice President Mike Pence has arrived for a meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
Updated: 27 minutes ago

Maldives ex-leader says Chinese projects akin to land grab

The exiled former leader of the Maldives says this year's presidential election could be the last chance to extricate his country from increasing Chinese influence, which he claims amounts to a land grab in the guise of investments in island development
Updated: 29 minutes ago

Here is the latest Florida sports news from The Associated Press

Here is the latest Florida sports news from The Associated Press
Updated: 1 hour ago
Some of the powerful SAG Awards moments witnessed off-camera

Some of the powerful SAG Awards moments witnessed off-camera

Some of the powerful SAG Awards moments witnessed off-camera include Sterling K. Brown's emotional reaction to 'This Is Us' win, Janney's empathy for Tonya Harding
Updated: 1 hour ago

Weekend Sports in Brief

Weekend Sports in Brief
Updated: 1 hour ago