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Obama urged to quit as honorary Boy Scout prez

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Politics,Paul Bedard,Washington Secrets,Columnists

If President Obama feels so strongly that the Boy Scouts should drop their ban on gays joining the organization, then he should quit as honorary head of the historic group, a prominent gay activist is urging.

Steve Siebold, a blogger, activist, and book author, said it is hypocritical for the president to support having gays in the Boy Scouts and to still act as honorary president, a role started back in Teddy Roosevelt's administration.

Siebold, author of Sex, Politics and Religion: How Delusional Thinking is Destroying America, said that Obama's "two-facedness" on the issue is hurting the drive for gay marriage, which Obama has endorsed, and the fight against discrimination.

"Obama is playing the middle on this one and engaging in two-facedness behavior, and you can bet that Mitt Romney is going to use it as ammunition," he said. "Obama has already said he supports gay marriage, but it's time he backs those words up with action so they're just not words."

He noted that some former Eagle Scouts are sending their medals back to the Boy Scouts as a protest, but the president isn't doing more than talking. "It's hypocrisy and sending the wrong message. If the president wants to make a statement, he should not only talk the talk, but walk it, too. He should resign as honorary president of the Boy Scouts organization immediately, which would really make an impact that it's time we treat gays as equals."

What irks him most is Obama's reference in his statement on the Boy Scout policy that touches on discrimination. The White House statement said: "The president believes the Boy Scouts is a valuable organization that has helped educate and build character in American boys for more than a century." It added, "He also opposes discrimination in all forms, and as such opposes this policy that discriminates on basis of sexual orientation."

Siebold told Secrets that as a black president, discrimination has a larger meaning for Obama. "This is discrimination too. It's the same thing," he said of the Boy Scouts policy.