The National Geographic Channel, which is set to air the new Are You Tougher Than A Boy Scout series this spring, has been asked to denounce the BSA's anti-gay policies ahead of the show.
The issue caught GLAAD's attention thanks to a Change.org petition launched by 20-year old Eagle Scout Will Oliver.
Will writes at Change.org:
As an outdoorsman and an Eagle Scout, I'm urging National Geographic to speak out against the Boy Scouts of America's anti-gay policy and issue a disclaimer before airing the new TV series "Are You Tougher Than A Boy Scout?"
By airing "Are You Tougher Than a Boy Scout?", National Geographic has stepped into a uniquely influential role as a strategic business partner of the BSA. The show is being used to market the Boy Scouts of America to young people, but fails to inform viewers about the organization's dangerous anti-gay policy. I urge the network to speak out now to protect gay youth and leaders like me.
GLAAD President Herndon Graddick adds:
"That National Geographic would brush aside countless gay teens suffering at the hands of the BSA, shrugging off injustice as just another 'point of view,' is irresponsible. By airing this program, National Geographic is providing support and publicity to an organization that harms young people simply because of who they are. If the network is truly committed to standing by its non-discrimination practices, it should have no problem airing a disclaimer to that effect."
The National Geographic Channel has issued a lukewarm response that isn't satisifying Will or GLAAD.
"National Geographic Channel is an international media company that is an equal opportunity employer. We do not discriminate in any capacity. As it relates to our upcoming show with the Boy Scouts, we certainly appreciate all points of view on the topic, but when people see our show they will realize it has nothing to do with this debate, and is in fact a competition series between individual scouts and civilians."
What do you think of NatGeo's response to the issue?