Scientology Crime Syndicate


Local scout leader confesses homosexuality

Matt Cota

SANTA BARBARA, Oct. 18 - A surprise announcement by the highest-ranking Boy Scout leader on the Central Coast turns the organization's anti-gay policy upside down.

WHILE LOCAL GOVERNMENT is re-examining its relationship with the organization, the leader of the Los Padres Council says he's gay.

In his announcement, Len Lanzi explained that he believes his sexual preferences have not affected his ability to do the job. "I'm a private person who keeps my personal relationships private, but I am gay. I uphold the Boy Scout policies because I believe in them.

After 14 years as a leader of the Boy Scouts, Lanzi decided to admit his

homosexuality in an effort to convince the Santa Barbara County Board of

Supervisors to continue to support the scouts. Though the board has delayed their decision regarding funding, Lanzi's future with the scouts may be over.

Lanzi is credited with having turned the chapter around, so his supporters hope he will be allowed to resume his position. "The only thing that has changed since yesterday is that the public now knows that

he is gay, openly gay. He has 14 years of experience while getting high marks and does an excellent job. Nothing has changed except that people now happen to know that he's gay," said gay rights activist Peter Wright of Pacific Pride.

Possible consequences of Lanzi's admission are that he could lose his job, he could be kept on despite the policies, or the national office could revoke the Los Padres Council's charter.

Several scout groups across the nation have asked that national leaders reconsider the policies having to do with gays. No Boy Scout council, however, has renounced the policies.


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