U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan today issued the following statement on the Boy Scouts of America's decision to no longer deny membership to youth on the basis of sexual orientation or preference alone:
"The Boy Scouts of America has been supporting the learning and development of youth for more than a century. The Scouts have helped boys gain skills in camping, hiking and nature, but also engineering, robotics and medicine. And scouting has been the foundation for character development for millions of young men. I can't think of a better lesson in character than one that teaches our young people to value the contributions each of us makes and respect one another. The Scouts have made a historic step in the right direction, and I encourage them to continue to move forward in ensuring equality throughout the organization."