Video: Proud Boy Scout Camp Leader Comes Out
Boy scout camp leader Derek Nance takes a deep breath before saying the three words that will cost him his position in the organization: "I am gay."
Nance is clearly torn by his relationship to the Boy Scouts of America that reaffirmed its policy against including gays in its organization this summer. He talks about the skills he's learned and the close friends he's met through Boy Scouts, but at the same time he's not allowed to truly be himself the way straight staffers are: "I'm open to all my friends and family 'in real life' but the people I truly feel closest to I've had to remain distant, which is why I've chosen this moment to open up to them and to every other staff member of the Boys Scouts of America that is in the position I'm in."
But Nance says he believes the only way Boy Scouts will change its stance is if more people like him who otherwise love the organization come out:
"The only way we will change the Boy Scouts' discriminatory policies is if those of us who are on the front lines representing them to thousands of scouts every single summer start engaging in some open dialogue on this issue. Lawsuits by the ACLU or confidential reviews by the Boy Scouts are not going to change policies. The first step to coming to an agreement on this issue is to drop the old pretenses and stereotypes and to start actually talking."