continued The scouts do a lot of good for children, Menzer says, "However, discrimination is discrimination."
Cox disputes these arguments. First of all, he says, "To give the impression that everyone is coming down on us is not true. There is a vocal part of the public that is concerned, but by no means is it sweeping the country." Cox says he asked for the lease extension now so that he could reassure potential donors for building and improvement projects that the scouts will be staying on their land. Cox also says that after the suit was announced he received a lot of community support in the form of phone calls, letters, and money, including a generous check from a local businessman.
"The community is made up of all kinds of segments of folks," Cox argues. "The scouts are one segment. There are many other segments of practices and beliefs. For example, part of the city budget goes to groups that serve selective groups of the city. There are groups that serve just girls. There are groups that serve just veterans. Is that discriminatory? You bet it is. Why should the Boy Scouts be excluded from benefits? We choose not to have the homosexual lifestyle represented by our leaders. We're not violating the law. There's a difference between legal discrimination and illegal discrimination. The city position is that as long as the property is maintained according to the lease, there is no issue."
"Unfortunately," he adds, "it seems to be the politically correct cause of the day, and sometimes those things just pass. Most of our young people are under the age of puberty and don't know what we're talking about. It's only an issue for the adult part of the population that's trying to make it an issue."
Regarding the federal suit, Frank Devaney, the deputy city attorney litigating the case on behalf of the city, responds, "Our position is that this is a political issue, not a legal issue. The city council can, if they want to, sever ties, but it's not legally required to."
Stephens counters, "If it is indeed a political issue and not legal, then what in the world was the city council doing attempting to rule on these matters with the key member out of town? It was outrageous that they discussed this when Christine Kehoe was out of town."