3 former Boy Scouts react to lifting gay ban

11:45 PM, Jan 28, 2013   |    comments
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MINNEAPOLIS - The Boy Scouts of America announced Monday they are considering reversing a long-standing ban on gay members and leaders.

KARE 11's Blake McCoy tracked down three former boy scouts who are gay and 'relief' was the most common word used.

"It was a big relief because that's something that's really been a hurtful thing for me to witness," says Sean Coffman, an Eagle Scout who grew up in Eagan.

"I believe that everybody should be what they want to be," adds Minneapolis resident Brandon Lueder. "If he wants to be a Boy Scout or he wants to be a ballet dancer ... it's 2013."

While Lueder and Coffman never 'came out' while Scouts, we did Skype with someone who did.

Brandon Hilton of Spartanburg, SC is so proud of his years as a Boy Scout, he still has the uniform.

"I got like every single pin that they've ever done," says Hilton.

He's proud despite the way his experienced ended when he came out at 15-years-old.

"Everybody found out that I was gay and it all kind of fell apart," says Hilton. "My Eagle Scout badges got taken away."

In lifting the national ban, The Boy Scouts of America says there will no longer be any policy on gay members.

Membership policy will be left up to individual troops. Some with religious ties for example, may opt to keep a ban in place.

A final decision is expected sometime in February.

Not everyone is happy with the proposed change.

Family Research Council President Tony Perkins released a statement saying the Scouts organization, "would be making a serious mistake to bow to the strong-arm tactics of LGBT activists and open the organization to homosexuality."

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