Focus on the Family president Jim Daly is upset that the Boy Scouts of America may ditch its nationwide ban on gay membership and he is using Elie Wiesel, the Holocaust survivor and author, to make his case. Daly cites Wiesel in a blog post which claims that allowing “openly practicing homosexuals” in the Boy Scouts will undermine “the character and safety of the boys.”
To the shock and disappointment of many of us, the Boy Scouts of America released a statement yesterday indicating the possibility of changing its policy that prevents the participation of openly practicing homosexuals.
Neutrality is often an attractive option, especially when the goal is to not offend. But in this case, I’m reminded of what the great humanitarian and political activist Elie Wiesel once wrote about trying to remain neutral when it comes to moral affairs:
We must take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented. Sometimes we must interfere.
At stake in this debate is not just the golden brand of the Boy Scouts but most importantly the character and safety of the boys involved.
That’s right: Daly is using a Wiesel quote to compare the Boy Scouts becoming neutral on gay members to countries that were neutral during the Holocaust.