Willie Iles Jr., the Irving-based Boy Scouts of America’s national director of government and community relations, spoke Friday at Fort Worth fundraiser, a banquet where the funds would go directly to three inner-city Boy Scout troops. The Star-Telegram attended as well:
Of the 1.4 million non-profit, non-religious groups today that directly affect young people, the Boy Scouts is the only one with a written policy to exclude, Iles said. Pointing out that there were 40 words in the Boy Scout Oath, Iles dramatically stopped after reciting only the first 14: “On my honor I will do my best to do my duty to God. …”
He asked rhetorically, “What if I have four sons — Matthew, Mark, Luke and John? And Matthew is gay?”
Iles, again saying he had “no opinion” on the subject, said there are 16,000 public schools systems in America and there are gay teachers in many classrooms.
“And yet we don’t have people running to pull their kids out of school,” he said.
In an appeal to the faith-based community, he said Boy Scouts is the country’s largest outreach organization, adding, “We’re in the outreach industry, not a Bible study class.”
I applaud Iles for everything he said, except one thing. You clearly have an opinion, sir. You have an opinion that could affect the lives of millions of young men. If only you were in a position to use that opinion for the betterment of the Scouts…