Philadelphia vs. Boy Scouts case opens

    Fight is over longtime headquarters of Cradle of Liberty Council

    The battle between the city of Philadelphia and a local Boy Scouts of America chapter is unfolding in federal court in Philadelphia. Lawyers delivered opening statements Tuesday in the jury trial centered on whether the city can revoke a group’s $1 per year lease because of a national policy that bans gays.

    At issue is whether the city can evict the local Boy Scouts from their building in Center City if the group refuses to go against the national ban on homosexuals becoming members. The local group spent their own money to maintain the city-owned building.

    The city ordered the Scouts to leave the building or pay significantly more to lease it.

    The local group’s lawyer said members’ sexuality wasn’t much of an issue.

    A lawyer for the city said the council should have the courage to challenge the national group’s policy.

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