Reporting Jessica Kartalija
MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Md. (WJZ) — A Montgomery County teenager is hoping his honesty and courage could urge the Boy Scouts to reconsider a ban on homosexuality.
Jessica Kartalija reports the Boy Scouts could reconsider the ban with a vote next month.
The Boys Scouts have been a huge part of Pascal Tessier’s life from Cub Scouts on. He’s now 16 and close to completing the rigorous requirements for an Eagle Scouts award but his honesty could get him booted out of the organization.
“I’ve never been bullied for being gay,” he said.
He came out in the eighth grade and said his fellow Scouts and leaders accepted him.
“My leaders accepted me as a person and are perfectly fine with it. They know who I am and recognize me as a person,” he said.
But now, as the Boy Scouts of America prepare to vote on whether to lift the ban on gays, Tessier has decided to speak out against it. He even helped to organize a protest.
“The Boy Scouts teaches you to be yourself and be brave and outspoken and work on issues and come up with things assertively,” he says.
Now that Tessier has spoken out publicly about homosexuality and demonstrated against the ban, he may soon receive a letter terminating his membership from Boy Scouts of America.
“I think it would still be worth it to be able to speak out for people who can’t,” he said.
His parents are fully supportive, just like they are with their older son Luccian, who is also gay and was a Boy Scout but came out after he received his Eagle Scout.
“Neither boy has announced their homosexuality in Scouting,” said Oliver Tessier.
The family says Pascal is putting a face on a discriminatory policy.
“Scouting is reconsidering a critical decision at a time when society is advancing on this issue and realizing that it makes no sense to exclude homosexuals any more than it made sense to exclude blacks or women,” Oliver Tessier said.
The National Capital Area Council of the Boy Scouts is headquartered in Bethesda.