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Boy Scouts Open Membership to Transgender Boys

Hendrick Xiong-Calmes, '18, Online Editor

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With our new president, many progressive changes in social spheres are being prompted not by legislation, but by the people themselves. As evidenced by the reactions of the LGBT+ community in the face of Donald Trump’s election, many people are worried about what this will mean for the future of gay and transgender rights. But regardless of the fate of LGBT+ legislation, many private organizations are taking it upon themselves to continue to push boundaries. An example of this is the Boy Scouts of America, and their recent allowance of transgender boys to become scouts. Effective immediately after Chief Scout Executive Michael Stanbaugh’s announcement on January 31st, Admittance to the Cub Scouts and the Boy Scouts will now take into consideration the gender indicated on application forms. It is suggested that this change was influenced By Hendrick Xiong-Calmes, ‘18 Online Editor heavily after an eight year old transgender cub scout was kicked out for being his gender identity. As stated by Stanbaugh in his announcement, “This is an area that we will continue to thoughtfully evaluate to bring the benefits of scouting to the greatest number of youth possible all while remaining true to our core beliefs.” By now acknowledging transgender boys in the truth of the Boy Scouts’ “core beliefs,” he is acknowledging how times are shifting what is socially acceptable in some places.

This all comes after the Boy Scouts of America had made many changes in accordance with LGBT+ members. Before its change in 2015, camp counselors were not allowed to be gay, and before 2014, youths were not allowed to be gay. The Boy Scouts of America are just one example of how shifts are now being made regarding transgender rights, as numerous states are still debating on their overall stance towards proposed bathroom bills. As our country’s legislation has not yet taken action to acknowledge where the LGBT+ community stands, there is an immense amount of hesitancy when it comes to being optimistic towards political advancements. But in a time of confusion and unknown, there are moments like these that are undoubtedly a win for the transgender community, the gay community, their allies, and everyone in between.

The student newspaper of Strath Haven High School. The Panther Press is first and foremost a reflection of the opinions and interests of the student body. For this reason, we do not publish any anonymous or teacher-written submissions, and we do not discriminate against any ideology or political opinion. While we are bound by school policy (and funding), we will not render any article neutral, although individual points may be edited for obscene or inflammatory content. Finally, the articles published in the Panther Press do not necessarily reflect the views of the editors or advisors.
Boy Scouts Open Membership to Transgender Boys