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Boy Scouts stand on stage with a U.S. flag during the Pledge of Allegiance to begin the inaugural Freedom Summit meeting for conservative speakers in Manchester, New Hampshire April 12, 2014.  REUTERS/Lucas Jackson (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS) - RTR3KZQM Boy Scouts stand on stage with a U.S. flag during the Pledge of Allegiance to begin the inaugural Freedom Summit meeting for conservative speakers in Manchester, New Hampshire April 12, 2014. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS) - RTR3KZQM  

Calif. moves to ban judges affiliated with Boy Scouts

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Patrick Howley
Political Reporter

California is proposing to ban members of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) from serving as judges because the Boy Scouts do not allow gay troop leaders, The Daily Caller has learned.

In a move with major legal implications, The California Supreme Court Advisory Committee on The Code of Judicial Ethics has proposed to classify the Boy Scouts as practicing “invidious discrimination” against gays, which would end the group’s exemption to anti-discriminatory ethics rules and would prohibit judges from being affiliated with the group.

“The Committee’s invitation ignores the fact that the change also encompasses other youth organizations whose membership is limited on the basis of gender, e.g., the Girl Scouts, as well as the military, which continues to practice ‘discrimination’ on the basis of gender,” wrote Catherine Short, legal director of the pro-life group Life Legal Defense Foundation, in a letter to the Committee obtained by TheDC that predicts possible implications for pro-life judges in the future.

“Perhaps this is not an unintended consequence,” wrote Short.

“This proposed amendment has as its overtly-stated purpose the branding of the BSA as an organization whose members must be assumed to be biased and thus unfit for the bench. The Committee states that ‘eliminating the exemption… would enhance public confidence in the impartiality of the judiciary,’” Short said.

“On the contrary, by promoting a hierarchy of politically-favored ‘victim’ status through pointlessly impugning the integrity of members of a venerable American institution, the proposed Amendment will communicate to the public that judges are being told by the California Supreme Court what to think, whom they may associate with, and what are permissible opinions to hold, and that only those who toe the line will be allowed to sit on the bench. The public can hardly expect impartiality from the judiciary in such a climate of intolerance,” Short wrote.

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