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Chatting in the living room one night, Ron Orr gave his 15-year-old son Andrew a choice: He could stick with the Boy Scouts of America and his mission to become an Eagle Scout, or he could join Trail Life USA - the new Christian-based alternative that excludes openly gay boys.
Six gay couples filed a lawsuit Tuesday seeking to overturn Florida's ban on same-sex marriage, the latest in a series of cases across the country that contend such prohibitions are unconstitutional and effectively relegate gay partners to second-class status.
For 103 years, the Boy Scouts of America stood their ground for traditional moral values. That changed in May when the group's leadership succumbed to noisy activist groups (and cowed corporate donors) and opened their ranks to homosexuals. Backers of the Scouting oath, in which each member promises to be "morally straight," think there's an opportunity for a straight alternative.
The newly announced Trail Life USA expects to become a "premier" Christian organization for boys and young men when it fully launches in the new year.
More than 1,200 former Scouting officials, parents and youths are gathering in Nashville, Tenn., Friday to unveil the name and other details about a new Christian-based organization for boys.
Organizers said Tuesday that they were putting the final touches on a "character-development" national program for boys, in the most direct challenge to date to the decision by the Boy Scouts of America to allow openly gay boys to participate in Scouting.
Openly gay youths can join the Boy Scouts of America, its voting members decided Thursday, though gay leaders promptly called the change in the century-old program for boys and teens inadequate and vowed to continue to pressure the Scouts to go further.
"Keep sex and politics out of Scouting."