Scott Walker walks back his statement on gay scout leaders



If you listen to Scott Walker talk long enough, you will always find yourself agreeing with something he says. For example, many conservatives agree with his comments yesterday saying the ban on gay scout leaders protected kids. And many liberals will agree with him today when he walked back those comments.

Gov. Scott Walker, who recently expressed support for a ban on gay Boy Scout leaders because it “protected children,” said Wednesday that he did not mean that children needed “physical protection” from gay scoutmasters — but rather protection from the debate over the ban.

In comments published on Tuesday by The Independent Journal Review, a news website that is popular with young conservatives, Mr. Walker, a former Eagle Scout, said, “I have had a lifelong commitment to the Scouts and support the previous membership policy because it protected children and advanced Scout values.” Yet during a brief news conference in South Carolina on Wednesday, Mr. Walker said that he was not pushing to save the ban — “it’s up to the Boy Scouts” — and that his earlier remarks were not about protecting children from gay people.

“The protection was not a physical protection,” he said, but rather about “protecting them from being involved in the very thing you’re talking about right now, the political and media discussion about it, instead of just focusing on what Scouts is about, which is about camping and citizenship and things of that nature.”

Many gays are not predators. But the idea of having scout leaders who are attracted to the same gender of their charges is very unwise and risky. You don't want there to be any possibility that a scout leader might be attracted to his scouts. That's why heterosexual male scout leaders have been paired with boy scouts. This new system creates the possibilities that some scout leaders might be attracted to their boys, and that's not a risk worth taking.

I hope everyone agrees with me that Walker's latest statement, that he meant "protecting scouts from discussion about gay scout masters", is not only false, but a lame false statement. I worry that Hillary might cut him to pieces over his inconsistencies, and I am not the only one worried about this.

What do you think?

(Abridged version originally published in AT)



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