Today, GLAAD delivered 120,000 Change.org petition signatures to the National Geographic Channel urging the television network to denounce the anti-gay policy of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) before tonight’s premiere of Are You Tougher Than A Boy Scout? Gay Eagle Scout Will Oliver helped deliver the petitions and pointed out that National Geographic has a nondiscrimination policy that protects sexual orientation, so it’s hypocritical to not call out the Boy Scouts:
OLIVER: By failing to acknowledge the Boy Scouts’ discriminatory policy, National Geographic Channel is turning a cold shoulder to gay and allied viewers. Silence implies apathy towards all the Scouts and leaders who have been forced to hide who they are. Over 120,000 people have spoken — not to demand that the show be canceled — but to ask that National Geographic Channel reaffirm its core belief in non-discrimination.
According to the BSA’s internal documents, the partnership with National Geographic is part of a plan to make Scouting look “cool” with youth. Oliver believes that Scouting is cool, but is urging the the network to air the following disclaimer before the show airs:
The current membership policy of the Boy Scouts of America goes against the policy of National Geographic Channel and the National Geographic Society. National Geographic Channel is an equal opportunity employer and does not support discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.
Oliver and GLAAD are meeting with NatGeo executives today, and hopefully a disclaimer like this airs with the show: