This Sunday, when an estimated group of 14,000 registered participants step off to take part in the New York City’s 44th Annual Gay Pride March down Fifth Avenue, a group of New York area Boy Scouts will be on hand to present the American flag during the national anthem and serve as the march’s Color Guard, GLAAD reports.
"NYC Pride warmly welcomes Scouts for Equality to the route as our 2014 NYC Pride March Color Guard," said NYC Pride March Director, Dave Studinski. "Our 2014 theme is ’We Have Won When We’re One,’ and this message resonates well with Scouts for Equality’s mission. From their participation in our step-off ceremony through the moment they pass the historic Stonewall Inn, may the Scout’s joint display of our nation’s colors and the rainbow flag remind us all that the LGBT movement seeks not tolerance, but acceptance as equals."
GLAAD notes the group of scouts, which represent three generations -- gay and straight, may face repercussions for their participation in this event, as the wearing of scout uniforms during Pride celebrations is a "violation of the Scout Oath and Scout Law." Nevertheless, Stacey Sarnicola, Brooklyn chapter lead for Scouts for Equality appears unflawed.
"We are grateful for this invitation from NYC Pride, and we are honored and humbled to provide this patriotic service to the LGBT community of New York," said Sarnicola. "Since 1978, the BSA has held a policy that excluded gay youth and parents. While the BSA voted last year to end the policy barring gay youth from participation, it has made no change in its membership policy regarding adults. The Greater New York Councils’ inclusive policy is what gave me permission to allow my son to join the Boy Scouts. It’s what gives us permission to march, and it gives us hope for a BSA for all in the near future."
GLAAD reports Scouts for Equality are inviting all regional Scouts, Scouters, alumnus, and families -- Cubs, Scouts, Ventures, and Explorers -- to join the march on June 29 in their Scout uniforms, supporting the beginning of a fully-inclusive, national BSA. Interested parties may sign up via Facebook.