U.S. Supreme Court won't hear case of discrimination against Boy Scouts
It looks like one decision on the Boy Scouts' sexual conduct requirements is enough for the U.S. Supreme Court. At least for now.
In 2000, the justices court ruled that requiring the Boy Scouts of America to admit homosexual scout leaders was an unconstitutional violation of the right of association, and would "significantly burden the organization's right to oppose or disfavor homosexual conduct."
But that same year the state of Connecticut said the Scouts' ban on homosexual leaders violated state antidiscrimination law, and booted it from a list of 900 charities that may receive contributions from a state employee payroll deduction plan. Lower federal courts said Connecticut was within its rights to exclude the Scouts, and yesterday the Supreme Court decided not to hear the case.
"Connecticut has not prevented the BSA from exercising its First Amendment rights," the U.S. 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in July 2003. "It has instead set up a regulatory scheme to achieve constitutionally valid ends under which, as it happens, the BSA pays a price for doing so."
In other words, lawyer George Davidson, who represented the Boy Scouts, told the Associated Press, "government is entitled to make an organization that exercises its First Amendment right pay a price for exercising that right." So much for "free" speech, says Davidson. "What if a church softball league wanted to get a permit to use a ballfield in the park for a couple of hours? The religious organizations to which most Americans belong have the same view of the morality of homosexual conduct as the Boy Scouts do. ...1
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