On Wednesday, a federal jury ruled against the City of Philadelphia and their desire to evict the local Boy Scout council, Cradle of Liberty, from a city-owned building for which the Scouts pay $1 per year.
According to The Associated Press:
The city had insisted that nonprofits given free use of its property must abide by local anti-discrimination laws, which include equal protection for gays. But the jury found the city’s reason violated the local scout council’s First Amendment rights.
“We do hope that eventually national (Boy Scouts of America) will change its minds. But at this point, the Cradle of Liberty (Council) is still obligated to follow its policy,” said foreman Merrill Arbogast, 40, of Reinholds, a trucker and former Eagle Scout.
In their lawsuit, the scouts had sought an injunction barring the city from evicting them, or charging $200,000 a year in rent, on their stately Beaux Arts headquarters building.
The ban on evicting the Scouts was not immediately issued by the judge overseeing the case. According to the piece, “he told jurors the city’s anti-discrimination policy is ‘principled’ and said he hoped the two ‘honorable institutions’ could work something out.”
I don’t know Bill Clinton. I’ve never met him. I’ve only seen him speak live once — last night when he gave the opening keynote at Netroots Nation in Pittsburgh. Nonetheless, I do feel like I know good ol’ Bill. He was my president as a child growing up in little Winston-Salem, N.C. He’s a fellow Southerner, a good and respected leader around the world and someone who understands the needs of all Americans.
In 1992, I was six. For whatever reason, I knew I liked Bill Clinton. I saw him on the news when my parents watched at night and, immediately, I knew I should be on this guy’s side. I begged my mother to let me stay up late and watch the election returns. My first grade class in the morning be damned, I was going to watch Bill Clinton become president. I pleaded with my mom at dinner, after my bath and before I climbed into bed. She finally relented.