Boy Scout Troop Expels Paul Trout Because He's an Atheist

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In Shepherdstown, West Virginia, fifteen-year-old Paul Trout is expelled from Boy Scout Troop 105 because he is an atheist.

In June Paul was interviewed for a promotion to the rank of Life Scout, one level below Eagle Scout, and he was asked about his religious beliefs.

Paul Trout was honest with them, saying he didn't believe in a supreme being but did believe in self-reliance and respected the rights of others to believe in a supreme being.

Bill Love, Chief Scout Executive, ordered the expulsion:

"Youth and / or adult members of the Boy Scouts of America must meet certain membership requirements. One of these requirements is belief in a supreme being.

If a person does not have belief in a supreme being, then they cannot be a member of the Boy Scouts of America."

Albert Magahee, Paul Trout's scoutmaster, admits that Paul is the best-disciplined and most helpful scout in the whole troop but has no choice but to follow the directives of the national organization.

Anita Trout, Paul's mother as well as a Cub Scout den mother, responded:

"We're not card-carrying atheists or anything. We just feel you don't have to belong to a religious organization to know the difference between right and wrong. ...

He's really upset by all this. They've implied Paul is dishonest."

The Freedom From Religion Foundation asks the Boy Scouts of America to drop their bigotry and discrimination against atheists. FFRF president Anne Gaylor says: "We believe this recent discriminatory action of the Boy Scouts of America is both legally and morally indefensible.

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