According to a report in World Magazine, the Boy Scouts of America has been paying Ralph Reed to set up meetings between Christian conservative leaders and BSA officials who support the resolution ending the ban on gay scouts.
Reed insists that he does not support the proposed policy change but is simply serving as a “peacemaker” between the two sides in an effort to “facilitate a dialogue.” Not surprisingly, opponents of the change are not buying Reed’s defense:
WORLD learned that Reed, founder of the Christian Coalition and now president of the Faith and Freedom Coalition, has arranged meetings and conference calls between Christian conservative leaders and BSA officials who support the pro-gay resolution. According to John Stemberger, founder of OnMyHonor.Net, a group opposed to the policy change, “After the introduction is made, the BSA officials try to convince these top conservative evangelical leaders to support the resolution by finding friendly media venues to discuss it.”
Reed confirmed in a phone conversation with me that he had arranged conference calls in an attempt to be a “peacemaker” in the process. He said he had not personally participated in the calls and acknowledged he is paid a small retainer by the Boy Scouts. Reed would not disclose the amount of his fee except to characterize it as “de minimus.”
“[I would] deeply resent any implication that I am helping this policy to pass.” he added. “I am on record opposing a change in the current policy. Period.”
Stemberger, though, called Reed’s comment “doubletalk.” Regardless of Reed’s intention, Stemberger said, “these calls could not help but further the resolution.”
In an email to WORLD, Ralph Reed stressed “my 43-year involvement in the Boy Scouts, the fact that I am an Eagle Scout, [and] the fact that I sit on the executive board of one of the most respected local councils in the country [the North Georgia Council of the Boy Scouts].” He said his role was to “facilitate a dialogue.” Neither Reed nor the Boy Scouts would say how much the organization is paying Reed.