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Gay Teen In Moraga Denied Eagle Scout Badge

A Moraga high school senior's project, a 288-tile Wall of Tolerance, will not quality for his Eagle Scout Badge because Ryan Andresen is gay, his mother says.

Ryan Andresen, a high school senior who attends a private school in Berkeley, completed his Eagle Scout project--a 288-tile wall of tolerance at Joaquin Moraga Middle School in Moraga last month. But according to his mother, Andresen's Moraga Boy Scout troop is refusing to sign off on the project because Andresen is gay.

"We are all just in shock," said Ryan's mother, Karen Andresen.

The family has a petition drawing international attention on Change.org urging the leaders of the local troop to reject the Boy Scouts of America's "discriminatory anti-gay policy" and give Ryan Andresen the Eagle award. Ryan is a senior at Maybeck High School in Berkeley.

"It hurts me so much to watch Ryan suffer for being who he is, because to me, he's perfect," said Karen Andresen.

Ryan's father, Eric Andresen, used to do the bookkeeping for Troop 212. He resigned on Tuesday, Karen Andresen said, after Scoutmaster Ranier del Valle reaffirmed his refusal to sign off on Ryan's project.

Patch is trying to reach del Valle for comment.

Karen Andresen said that Ryan came out to his family two years ago. The idea for the wall of tolerance was a result of the bullying he experienced at school and in the Boy Scouts.

Ryan Andresen hopes to attend the University of San Francisco.

"Many troops around the country are standing up, choosing to reject the Boy Scouts' discriminatory policy," the petition statement by Karen Andresen reads. "I sincerely hope that Ryan's troop — Troop 212 — will become one of them."

The Boy Scouts of America has policies that prohibit "open or avowed" homosexual people from membership
in its Scouting program, as well as atheists and agnostics, according to Wikipedia.

One petition signer from overseas wrote on Change.org said he signed "because I am a member of the Boy Scouts in the UK and discrimination is the very thing we are taught against! Scouts are supposed to HONOUR people with ALL their differences. Not treat them like filth."

Watch Patch for updates.

Doreen October 06, 2012 at 03:05 PM
Integration, not segregation, is the American way. You're stretching the 'private' thing to extremes, though you are technically correct. I'm thinking of starting a private club for beautiful people only; no uglies need apply. I think freedom is more about people being altogether with respect for each other's differences.
Barbara Fiorica October 07, 2012 at 07:13 AM
Gee Graham, perhaps you and RB can start your own group for mindless bigots.
JohnB March 11, 2013 at 08:23 PM
dbtbrtnrn
MIKE ALFORD March 12, 2013 at 04:19 AM
RB --- I Was an Eagle Scout -- I earned that Rank ! --- And There Is Nothing More Pure & American -- And You Are Absoulty Right The Boy Scouts Of America Are Very Clear About Their Policies If People want to Start a Pure Gay Scout Group Go For It ! But Not At the expence Of --- The Honer And Faith In America & God that they Stand for ! ---- Thank You For Speaking the Truth And Standing Up As An American !
DONALD E. BARKLEY March 12, 2013 at 05:43 AM
paul b (THE IDIOT)..... you insensitive fool! ALSO Please attn. all at PATCH, if a "Person calling for a "GANG RAPE" is not an improper statement! Please let us know what is!! You close Threads all over the place... that are still active, Yet this survives, by who's agenda? I am SHOCKED!

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