Philadelphia Loses Bid To Oust Boy Scouts From City-Owned Building
A Philadelphia federal jury has ruled unanimously that the city violated the First Amendment rights of the Boy Scouts when it used the group's anti-gay policies in an attempt to evict them from their city-owned building.
"We can't be kicked out of the building or evicted and we don't have to pay any rent," Scouts' attorney William M. McSwain said of the verdict involving the organization's policy. Scouts lawyers said they expect U.S. District Judge Ronald Buckwalter to issue a permanent injunction that bars the Scouts' eviction based on their anti-gay policy. That's not, however, necessarily the end. Under the city's lease, it can evict the Scouts without giving a reason, Scouts' Jason P. Gosselin said. In an unusual address to the jury, Buckwalter said he hopes the Council and the city can reach a final negotiated solution. The Scouts are willing to negotiate and would like to end the nearly 7-year standoff, Gosselin said.Wingnut blogs are already celebrating.