Valdosta Boy Scouts vs. Bank of America

As you know, the Boy Scouts do not have to admit gay members due to a Supreme Court ruling. So, they don’t. Many corporations, on their own or under pressure from outside groups, have cut funding for the Boy Scouts because of their policies against gay members.

It has happened in Valdosta. Despite several years of donations to the Boy Scouts — including after the Supreme Court ruling, Bank of America has decided to stop sending their annual donation to a Valdosta area Boy Scouts group.

My friend Boddington has the details at RedState.


  1. Eddie T says:

    So corporations should be coerced into giving money to groups whose agendas they don’t support?

    Erick, I hope you don’t agrree with Boddington’s analysis. Why are we faulting an independent body for exercising their right to freedom of speech via their financial support?

    The comments at RedState, thankfuly, explore the problems with Boddington’s critique.

  2. McCain-Rice\'08 says:

    This stuff is rediculous..the Boy Scouts is an organization that instills morals and values in young men, they offer fun outings to young boys and teach them valuble lessons, they feed us generations of boys with good character, and they are constantly under attack…Mark Taylor and Tom Murphy for years blocked the defense of scouting bill that would have required all fedearly funded buildings in Georgia to allow Scouts to hold weekly meetings in their facilities..What do the Democrats have against Boy Scouts?? They are a private organization and have every right to prohibit Homosexuals from joining…coorperations like Bank of America-Valdosta should be called out for this, and I want to know of like minded businesses so that I know where not to shop.

  3. McCain-Rice\'08 says:

    Rep. Earl Erhart (R-Cobb), Rep. Pedro Marin (D-Gwinett), Rep. Dubois Porter (D-Laurens), Rep John Lunsford (R), Rep. Jill Chambers (R-Dekalb) and Senator John Wiles (R-Cobb) are the most supportive of the Boy Scouts here in Georgia, and they have my full respect for doing so.

  4. Rusty says:

    The Boy Scouts, as a private organization, has the choice who to include or not include among its membership. Bank of America, as a private organization, has the choice who to donate or not donate money to. You don’t get it both ways. In an unimpeded market of ideas, a corporation is free to reject the Boy Scouts’ bigotry the same as it is free to write bigotry into its bilaws.

    It’s funny that that guy talks about “overactive liberalism” when it’s actually “overactive liberalism” that implies the precious market of ideas should be interfered with in favor of the Boy Scouts. So, yeah, whoever shares this position is an anti-market liberal.

    I can’t wait for the actual conservative wing of the Republican party to realize they’re dealing with a different breed of liberalism when they’re dealing with the theocratic wing of the party. Realizing there’s a problem is the first step to eliminating it.

  5. John Douglas says:

    Maybe its time for the state to disinvest in Bank of America?

    This is the same lunatic fringe thinking that drives political correctness in America. What was wrong is now right. What was dirty is now clean. What was unwelcomed is now welcomed.

    Meanwhile, the primary targets of the hard core left, the Catholic Church, Baptist Church and Boy Scouts of America continue to hold the line. Why are they the targets? Because unlike the Bank of America and so many others, they have refused to fold and yield to these forces on the march across the country and globe. They have refused to accept moral bankruptcy as the norm of life and they have refused to renounce the characteristics that made America and Georgia great.

    God bless the Boy Scouts of America.

  6. McCain-Rice\'08 says:

    Im not saying they dont have a right to stop donating to the scouts…but we have a right to know about such companies so we know where not to shop…I gurentee there are more supporters of Scouting across the nation then there are extreme pro-gay supporters…to me it was a bad business desision, and Im sure a lot of people will be switching banks down in Valdosta with in the next week.

  7. Skeptical says:

    Funny Mr. Douglas, after reading through this drivel, I was thinking the conservative lifestyle is just what’s wrong with America.

    I particularly like how everyone of you giant hypocrites thinks it’s ok for a company to buckle to pressure to put statues of the Ten Commandments in their lobbies or to force prayer in schools, but to have a private company (that overwhelmingly supports the Republicans in their political donations) choose freely of it’s own accord not to continue donating to the this group is just shameful! Well, you cannot have it both ways no matter what you have become accustomed to in the past few years with the theocrats in control.

    Their customer service stinks, but this actually makes me glad that I bank with Bank of America.

    We don’t need lectures on moral bankruptcy, Senator. You might be surprised to find out that there are a great many gay and lesbian people who share very similar beliefs with you – a strong belief in a higher power, a desire to serve to make America a better place, love of family and country, a belief that everyone should have access to quality heathcare and should be given the opportunity to receive a quality education. The things that truly make America and Georgia a better place – not whether it makes you uncomfortable to see two women holding hands.

    You say that the gay lifestyle is “wrong”. Although my husband and I are heterosexuals, we say that teaching children to hate someone because they are different from you is wrong.

    If we’re all wrong, who’s right?

  8. Decaturguy says:

    So, Senator Douglas, not only do you want the government to interfere with my private life becaue “the gay lifestyle is wrong,” but you want the government to interfere with what a private company can do with its money?

    Boy, I didn’t realize how much you Republicans love big government until you got some power.

    Big government is wrong Senator Douglas. Not my “lifestyle.”

    But I guess you are just too addicted to big government to stop using it as a way to try to influence things you consider “morally bankrupt,” “wrong,” “dirty,” or “unwelcome.” You are the one who is morally bankrupt Senator Douglas.

    You are disgusting, sir.

  9. Bill Simon says:

    John, if you support more government-imposed “religion” and “morality”, then you shouldn’t be wagging too many fingers against those “leftists.” Because, you are one of them.

    A leftist is anyone who wishes to use the government to force individuals into living their moral beliefs.

    Any time a member of the GOP speaks in favor of more government laws that intrude into the lives of Americans, be it at the city, county, state, or federal level, they are demonstrating that they are also “leftists.”

    Raise your head and walk proudly among those lefties, Senator Douglas. 🙂

  10. McCain-Rice\'08 says:

    Let me differ from the Senator on the “moral bankruptcy” issue..I have no problem with those that choose a gay life style, and I supported the expanding of hate crime legislation to protect homosexual victims. I do not agree with gay marrige or gay addoption because 1. that destroys the sanctity of marrige and 2. that is an un-orthodox life style that is not acceptable for a child to be subject to..a child deserves a mom and a dad. Despite most of my fellow christians beliefs I do not think being gay is a one way ticket to hell. God does not hate gay people and I know of some gay Christians.
    On the Boy Scout issue, I have had enough of buissnesses cowering to the pro-gay activist groups and leaving the Boy Scouts of America out in the cold. As a private organization they have a right to ban gay members, and I seriously doubt that most Boy scouts really care about this huge fight…most are at the age where video-games rule! Bank of America had every right to do what they did, but the public has every right to switch banks over it.
    Maybe the Bank of America-Valdosta logo should change from the Red and blue stripes that look like the American flag, and change to the Rainbow flag to be “politicaly correct”..because truly not all Americans love America, only 99% do and they sure dont want to offend the remaing 1%.

  11. bowersville says:

    I agree, but identify yourself and what office you are running for, I am a little slow. We have our differences on Handel/Stephens, but we agree on other things. I do not agree with the analogy of being able to identify with Stephens because he has children. I began to question that when I knew Stephens to be about 50 YOA, and claim to have a child while changing diapers, raising 1K on the cell phone, and preparing another child for the Naval Academy and no other candidate can claim that. At 49 how can that be? Maybe, the wife of his youth vs. young wife of her youth? Please explain.

  12. Rusty says:

    MR, JD, et al.

    The people who would actually hurt them by withdrawing their money are also the people who can’t afford the bad PR of making an “I hate gays so much I won’t do business with any company that makes a pro-gay statement of any kind” statement. That leaves the people in Red States with small bank accounts that are more of a burden on the bank than anything else, so they’ll laugh at a protest.

  13. McCain-Rice\'08 says:

    Rusty, don’t underestimate the Middle class..If the Valdosta News Paper is covering this, a lot of those true southerners down there wont like it one bit and you’d be suprised how many would switch banks over it..your argument would be true here in Atlanta..but down there it’s a whole nother ball game.
    Bowersville, I am not running for any office (yet) lol! But I agree with some of your past comments as well. While Stephens/ Handel is not the issue at hand, Id just like to clear up for you that I did not intend to cite the fact that Bill has kids to promote him…I was simply giving reasons why I connect with him more, and that was a very insignificant reason, which caused a lot of unforseen misinterpretations. His record in the Senate is the main reason. To answer your question his wife is fairly younger than him, if you watch WSB-TV (Channel 2 News) she is the morning and noon anchor on weekends..her name is Sharon Walche.

  14. McCain-Rice\'08 says:

    Rusty thats also not the statement I would get from a large coorperation withdrawel, it would say to me “I support Boy Scouts and want to bank with some one who does as well”.. There are large Car Dealerships and Resteraunts in Valdosta that could switch banks and really cause a hurtin. I wouldnt be suprised if you see a lot of Valdosta banks start donating more to the Boy Scouts to attract attention, and get the former bank of america customers….Im also interested to know, where exactly Sen. Tim Golden (D-Valdosta) does his banking?

  15. McCain-Rice\'08 says:

    Charlie, that was an interesting article…however, If I were an edtitor for southern voice I dont think Id use Bobby Kahn’s quote..that man is the single most damper on the Georgia Democratic Party.

  16. stephaniemills21 says:

    I am not going to even respond to the bigoted drivel from Sen. Douglas and some of the others here. No one on here cares what you do in your bedroom, so why should you.

    Anyway, I serioulsy doubt that too many people will remove their money from Bank of America for this. Truth is, many companies try to appeal to gay and lesbian consumers. They have lots of disposable income and like to spend it. And appealing to the LGBT community is done by lots of so called rightwing/republican companies. Look at Coors Brewing Company. Huge supporters of Republicans and Conservative causes all across the US. You cannot walk into any gay bar and not see a coors neon sign on the wall without the rainbow flag colors. The “W” hotel chain has gay weekends at a lot of its hotels (big republicans). Ford, Delta, GM, and i could go on and on. The truth is, they follow the money, and the few folks in Valdosta that might get pissed is nothing compared to the millions of LGBT folks out there with their wallets open. Don’t believe it, take a trip the the Atlanta Pride festival this year. Think of it as research, and believe me, no one will want to hit on you – no one likes a closet case ;). Every company you can think of will be handing out promotional items with thier logos and the rainbow flag. All in hopes of getting LGBT dollars.

    If you boycotted every company with ties to the LGBT community, you would have a hard time going anywhere and being able to buy anything.

    Also, most people choose their banks because of some service they offer. I am not with Bank of America because of their customer service, but because they are everywhere, and i know when I go to another state, there is a good chance there is a Bank of America ATM close by. For me it is convenience. I seriously doubt there are that many folks who would go through all the trouble of changing banks just because of who they decided NOT to give money to.

    And if the polls on the issue are any indication, in a few years, a lot of the folks who are anti-gay will be dead. It is the older generation that has the problem, not the younger ones. If I were a bank or any other company, i would look at that trend and go where the money is going to be, not where is was.

  17. bowersville says:

    Thanks Charlie,
    The Stephens folks have cited SOVO so much about Handel, I’m surprised MR/08 has objected. I didn’t even know what SOVO was until the Stephens camp brought it up. I know I should wait until I’m on topic, but I could not.

  18. eehrhart says:

    There is no question the Bank of America corporation and its subsidiaries can spend the money they hold in their bank for citizens in any way they determine.

    It is also true that the state government through the people of Georgia can make decisions about the discriminatory practices of banks which they do business with. I wonder what the calls for divestment would be if Bank America were discriminating against certain advocacy organizations or if they were to dicriminate against say the Jewish faith,(Bobby). I think the calls would be for the state to stop doing business with such obviously bigoted and discriminatory business’s. I also think such calls would have a great deal of public support.

    I think it is entirely appropriate for millions of people to stop doing business with Bank America over this issue. Until they can show differently, as they said in their own words to the Alapaha Council of Boy Scouts, then they should reap the rewards of such a foolish business decision.

    It is also appropriate for the state to no longer do business with such a virulently bigoted and discriminatory corporation.

    Bank America = Hatred of Boy Scouting

    Now, that is a brilliant corporate add campaign.

    And yes if I receive any campaign support from this corporation you can count on my returning it until they come back around to the great American values of Boy Scouting.

  19. McCain-Rice\'08 says:

    Stephenie..I have no problem what individuals do in their bedroom..and I am not trying to boycott those who support the gay community. I have a gay uncle and I think gay people are just as American as I am. I do however have a problem with companies like Bank of America-Valdosta that try to make a statement by calling the Boy Scouts of America “an organization that promotes discrimination” and then ends all donations to Boy Scouts..sure, they have every right to do so, but I have every right to choose where I do my Banking, and I’ll be damned If I ever open an account with Bank of America…Im with Regions :)..But I do want to thank you for the insite, I never knew that they had neon rainbow collerd Coors Light Signs at Gay Bars, but since thats where you like to hang out and all..more power to you :)Just kidding!!:)

  20. GetReal says:

    Sen. Douglas-

    This is off topic for this thread, but since you’re reading it, I’ll ask you here (although I doubt you’ll actually answer).

    I noticed your letter to Cynthia McKinney about her representation of Rockdale County, which is also in your Senate district.

    Did you vote for the Lynn Westmoreland redistricting plan that put Rockdale in the 4th Congressional district (and also made McKinney much more secure from a successful Democratic primary challenge)?

    Did you offer an amendment to remove Rockdale from the 4th Congressional district? Did you do anything to keep your constituents out of Rep. McKinney’s district?

    Just wondering.

  21. Harry says:

    If I can ascertain that Suntrust is more pro-family, then I’ll take my business there and away from BA. Support for the Boy Scouts would certainly be a good indicator. Matter of fact, I think I’ll make the change anyway. I’m just a small fish but maybe it will send a message that the homosexual agenda is too militant and out of the closet.

  22. Decaturguy says:

    I’m so sorry to inform you, Harry, that the President and CEO of Suntrust Bank spoke to the gay professional networking group, the Atlanta Executive Network ( I guess bigots in Georgia will soon have nowhere to bank. Maybe you should should just start hiding it in your pillowcases.

    Senator Douglas and Rep. Ehrhart, I advocate getting the government out of our private lives, our wallets, and our private businesses. If that makes me a “leftist,” then I’m proud to be one. Seems like you’re the one who supports more government intervention.

    And I cannot think of any bigger government intrusion than the government itself divesting its money from a private company because of a decision it made regarding donating to a non-profit organization. If private individuals want to do so then fine, that is their choice. But to use the power of government to influence the private charitable giving of a corporation seems about as “leftist” as you can get.

  23. McCain-Rice\'08 says:

    Decaturuy..I don’t know about Sen. Douglas, but Id like you to please give us an example of how Rep. Erhart advocates “allowing Government in our private lives and wallets”…he has pushed forth the Defense of Scouting Bill that has been shot down by Mark Taylor time and time again, but that simply means that fedeal funded institutions must allow the Boy Scouts to use their facilities for meetings (ie: schools, currently they are banned from meeting there..they have to meet at Churches), he is not forcing anyone to donate to scouts..and certainly not invading private lives.

  24. Decaturguy says:

    Um, McCain-Rice, the Defense of Scouting Bill is a seperate issue from punishing a private business for its charitable giving choice.

    Read above, Ehrhart said that he thinks it would be appropriate for the State to “no longer do business” with Bank of America because it does not give money to a group that he considers deserving of their charity.

    I define that as the government intrusion into private business. It is none of the government’s business who Bank of America donates money to. And for the government (not private individuals) to try to punish it for choices it makes regarding charitable giving is big government at its finest.

    Oh, and Rep. Ehrhart, you received $1,000 from the Bank of America PAC on 9/9/05, another $1,000 on 1/3/05, . But I wouldn’t be too worried about it, you get enough money from the title pawn and check advance industry to cover any losses.

  25. GetReal says:

    Before this thread drops off the front page, I’d like to note that Sen. Douglas has not responded to the questions I posed last night.

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