By Greg Cahill
SPECIAL Prosecutor Ken Starr spent tens of millions trying to convince the American public that Bill Clinton is no Boy Scout. But it turns out that Clinton is. Now Rep. Lynn Woolsey, D-Petaluma, wants the president to resign his honorary position as head of the Boy Scouts of America in protest of the organization's policy against homosexuals.
"In order to disavow this policy of intolerance, as well as clarify any misconception of presidential approval, we urge you, the leader of our nation, to resign as the honorary head of the BSA," Woolsey wrote in a July 13 letter to Clinton. "Scouting should help boys grow and learn how to be leaders and good citizens, but intolerance is not a value we want our children to learn and it's not a value that the president of the United States should support."
Ten other Democratic Congressional representatives agreed and signed their names to the letter as well.
The action in the wake of the June 28 U.S. Supreme Court ruling that as a private organization, the BSA could exclude homosexuals from participating as leaders or a scouts. Woolsey and her colleagues contend that the BSA policy barring gays teaches intolerance and should not receive the support of the federal government.
Woolsey became active in the effort to expand the BSA to include gays when Steve Cozza, a Petaluma teen, started Scouting for All, a national grassroots campaign aimed at persuading the BSA to change its policy toward gays.
In a July 15 letter, Cozza, a 15-year-old Eagle Scout, told Clinton of his love for scouting and asked the president's help. "As an Eagle Scout . . . I think any form of discrimination is wrong," he wrote. ". . . The current leadership of the BSA [has] shamed scouting in America by supporting a practice of discrimination against gay kids and adults and atheists. My mother told me that when you ran for office the first time you told the American people, 'To discriminate against an American is un-American.'
"I agree with you.
"As an eagle Scout, I am asking you to find the courage to step down as the honorary president of the [BSA]. This courageous act would give a great message to millions of gay kids in this country that they are accepted, loved, and supported by you as president of the United States. . . . Right now all that my gay friends have heard from the BSA is that they are immoral and no good.
"Actually the Boy Scouts of America is acting immoral by the way they are discriminating."
Clinton has not responded to either letter.
Help Wanted: Pat Thurston Need Not Apply
BIG HOOP-TEE-DOO on the local progressives' mail network this week. The Armaturo Group--which dumped sometimes-outspoken KSRO radio talk-show host Pat Thurston a couple of months ago--has listed the following ad on Radio Online:
"Community talker wanted in Paradise. 1350 KSRO, heritage News/Talk in wine country of Sonoma County is considering a live and local afternoon show if we find the right person. Looking for someone who can immerse themselves in the community, and talk to Sonoma county about Sonoma County and the world. We ARE NOT looking for inflammatory talk or political blab."
That prompted Linda McCabe to respond (in a draft letter sent out over the e-mail chain) to opine that "having no opinion or being afraid to alienate people by being wishy-washy in talk radio is the single worst thing you can do as a host." McCabe urged the Armaturo Group "to get Pat Thurston back on the air. Our community needs the forum and not just taped delay blather from cities far away from Sonoma County."
Meanwhile, in an unrelated faux pas (or convenient synchronicity), the Independent last week accidentally printed an old KSRO promotional ad emblazoned with boxing gloves and touting the Pat Thurston Show.
Hey, maybe they should just hire her back--the print promos are ready and the fans are all dialed in.
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From the July 20-26, 2000 issue of the Sonoma County Independent.
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