[Marxism] Sea Scouts Scuttled at Berkeley Marina
Brian_Shannon at verizon.net
Thu Jan 12 20:06:58 MST 2006
At Calif. High Court, Outlook Choppy for Subsidy of Sea Scouts
State chief justice: 'Getting on a boat isn't necessarily part of any
Don't expect the Sea Scouts to be mooring their boats for free at the
Berkeley, Calif., Marina anytime soon.
. . .
"Getting on a boat isn't necessarily part of any constitutional
rights," Chief Justice Ronald George said.
Berkeley had allowed the Sea Scouts free berthing for their boats
since the late 1930s when the Mount Diablo Council of the Boy Scouts
provided 80,000 tons of rock for a breakwater at the marina and a
road for the city's Aquatic Park. But beginning in 1998, the Sea
Scouts were charged more than $500 a month after refusing to renounce
the Boy Scouts' policies of denying membership to homosexuals and
. . .
Justice Joyce Kennard asked Pleasant Hill, Calif., lawyer Jonathan
Gordon, who argued the Sea Scouts' case, how the court could
reconcile Berkeley's antidiscrimination policy with the Boy Scouts'
judicially recognized right to exclude gays and atheists.
"How would we deal with the tension one could readily see?" she asked.
Gordon responded by saying that Berkeley had "alternative means to
protest," such as condemning the Boy Scouts' policies in resolutions
or speaking out and telling kids and their parents to boycott the
"They can only talk about it?" George asked rather incredulously.
"They can't take action?"
"If multiple youth organizations are competing for a limited number
of berths," [Justice Marvin Baxter] asked, "can the city not narrow
down the applicants to those that don't discriminate?"
When Gordon responded that the city cannot use its policies to force
its beliefs down the group's throat, Baxter asked whether a "youth Ku
Klux Klan group" would be "on equal footing for these berths."
"It's unfortunate," Gordon said. "But that's correct."
Earlier, Justice Carlos Moreno had asked Gordon how the Sea Scouts
would respond if an openly gay person tried to join.
Gordon said the Sea Scouts are "ambivalent" about sexual orientation,
calling it a private matter of personal choice. "But," he added, "if
the Boy Scouts came down on us, we would have to exclude that person."
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