On Thursday more than 1,400 Boy Scouts of America delegates will head to the Gaylord Texan hotel in Grapevine to vote on a resolution that would allow youth who are openly gay to participate in the Boy Scouts.

The resolution keeps the ban on openly gay volunteers and other adults involved in Scouting according to the Dallas Morning News.

The resolution’s backers, who include the Irving-based BSA’s national leadership, say they want to bring equality to the century-old youth development organization.

“All kids belong in the Scouting program, and they are better off for it,” said BSA president Wayne Perry, a Seattle businessman.

Critics say the resolution, if passed, could tear the BSA apart. They say it would cause conservative families to pull their sons out of the organization, which claims 2.6 million youth members.

“The BSA’s own study shows that they will lose 200,000 to 400,000 kids, and I think it will be a lot more than that,” said John Stemberger, an Orlando lawyer and Eagle Scout who is leading the fight against the resolution.

The resolution reaffirms a Scout’s duty to God and maintains the BSA’s membership ban on avowed atheists.

The authors also kept the current ban on openly gay and lesbian adult volunteers — Cub Scout den parents, scoutmasters — and paid BSA staffers.

For example, the resolution’s passage would mean a 16-year-old openly gay Scout could earn his Eagle badge.

Three years later, he could apply for a position as a volunteer assistant scoutmaster and be rejected because of his sexual orientation.

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