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Wash. lawyer returns Eagle Scout badge in protest

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Associated Press
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February 11, 2013

A Seattle lawyer is turning in his Eagle Scout badge in protest of the Boy Scouts of America's ban on gays. Joseph Shaeffer is a civil rights and employment attorney with the firm McDonald, Hoague and Bayless. He says he was a scout in Tallahassee, Fla., and became an Eagle Scout in 1987. He mailed back his badge last week, saying he was joining hundreds of other Eagle Scouts in protest. He wrote that "instead of living up to its values, the Boy Scouts have chosen to exclude people because of who they love." The organization has been wrestling with the issue. The 1,400 voting members of the BSA's National Council will vote May 20 on a proposal to allow sponsors of individual Scout units to decide whether to admit gays.