Conservative martial arts icon Chuck Norris has criticised gay rights campaigners for trying to overturn a "century-old policy" banning homosexual members from taking part in the Boy Scouts of America youth organisation.
The group's long-standing rules have come under scrutiny in recent months after lesbian Ohio mum Jennifer Tyrrell was ousted as an adult leader of her son's Bridgeport troop in April (12) after bosses decided her sexual orientation "did not meet the high standards" set forth by the group. Her child, Cruz, was subsequently asked to leave the organisation as well.
Tyrrell's treatment has infuriated the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community and activists, including famous faces Julianne Moore, Ricky Martin and Star Trek legend George Takei, have been calling for Boy Scouts officials to modernise its policies.
Top organisation leader James Turley recently vowed to "seek a change" to the discriminatory rules, but staunch Republican supporter Norris questions Turley's motives and insists the Boy Scouts should remain true to its "core values and beliefs" because its members "epitomise the best of America".
In an article posted on AmmoLand.com, Norris claims Turley is simply trying to gain favour with U.S. President Barack Obama by aligning the Boy Scouts with the politician's liberal stance on gay rights.
He writes, "Is Turley working on his own initiative, or has the White House prodded him with perks and favors?
"...I personally have known a host of Boy Scouts, Eagle Scouts and BSA leaders. These individuals epitomize the best of America. Indeed, the BSA is as integral a part of American life and culture as hot dogs, baseball and Grandma's apple pie."
Remember the good old days, when Expendables 2 star Chuck Norris was just a meme? Well, recent years have seen the Walker, Texas Ranger star begin to unleash a whole new brand of Norrisisms unto the world. Norris has taken it upon himself to decry the efforts of James Turley, Ernst & Young CEO and board member of the Boy Scouts of America, to open the latter organization to the welcoming of homosexual children and scout leaders. Earlier in June, Turley released a statement vocalizing his intentions to fight the BSA policy of excluding gay members. Norris published an article on Ammoland.com that not only strongly implies a negative perspective on the homosexual community, but also expresses several conspiracy theories regarding the "agendas" of Turley and President Barack Obama.
Norris illustrates Turley's connections to Obama (having been invited to the first family's state dinner in March, having been nominated to the president's Export Council in 2010) as reason to suspect that he is acting on behalf of the "pro-gay Obama administration," probing the reader wit the recurring hypothetical question, "Is it a coincidence?" In fact, it is not a coincidence: the two men have opted for a personal and professional relationship quite certainly because of their aligned values, the belief in human equality being not the least important of the lot. But Norris instead suggests that "perks and favors" are what motivated Turley to express his opposition to the standing Boy Scouts policy. Norris even mentions Vladimir Putin as being potentially in the mix.
One of the most outlandish portions of the article is the following paragraph:"Is it a coincidence, too, that on March 3, 2009, Obama became the honorary president of the BSA — a position proudly and publicly held and highlighted by all presidents since President William Howard Taft in 1910 — but that Obama’s induction was held behind closed doors in the Oval Office with seven or so Boy Scouts present and absolutely nothing noted in the White House daily briefing or any other official communication?"It seems over the top to assume that Norris is actually insinuating that something sordid went on between Obama and the young boys in question, but it certainly reads that way.
Norris claims that the BSA's "century-old" standing policy simply advocates a "pro-traditional family stance," but it is Turley who is working on behalf of the idea of family. What the phrase "traditional family" should indicate is love, trust, and acceptance, not discrimination and alienation, as is what Norris is really fighting for. There is no concrete threat posed by the welcoming of homosexuals into the Boy Scouts of America. The only foreseeable results include allowing today's youth to learn more actively that gay children are no different than heterosexual children, and for those very gay children to experience the same joys and character-building exercises that the Boy Scouts of America has afforded to children for generations.
For now, a note to poor, busy publicists for Norris' Expendables 2: There's no such thing as bad PR? [David Edwards/Daily Celeb] More: Chuck Norris Forces 'Expendables 2' to Clean Up Its Language for a PG-13 Rating Howard Stern, Bristol Palin & More Criticize Obama's Support For Gay Marriage Ellen DeGeneres, NPH, More Tweet About President Obama's Support For Gay Marriage