Dear Editor,

My college son forwarded me a link to the article from the Herald entitled War on Boy Scouts by Woody Zimmerman. He forwarded this to me because after having read it, he was so disturbed by the content that he had to discuss it with me.

After reading this article I too am disturbed and although I am a firm believer in the freedom of speech, I also am well aware that many articles that are full of lies are published in our media. These articles although crafted as opinion, pretend to be based in fact. This column is so misinformed and hateful that one can only pray for Mr. Zimmerman.

"In reality, gays see a rich recruiting ground in the Scouts for their perverted lifestyle. If successful, they will gain access to the core of emerging American manhood. They will also have turned American morality away from the Judeo-Christian ethic on which the country has been based since its founding. These are key elements in gays' quest for legitimacy in American culture and society." 

Last time I looked our country was founded on "freedom and justice for all". What part of "for all" does Mr. Zimmerman not understand? 

The fact that he believes that the reason to fight for equality involves "sexual recruiting" just shows this man's ignorance and lack of understanding. Does this mean that straight softball coaches for girls should all be woman, because surely a heterosexual male coach would be looking for female players to conquer. How can he not see the absurdity of his statements? Homophobic eyes are so shortsighted and dangerous. To quote the "morally straight" phrase from the scout's oath as evidence that scouts cannot be gay is absurd. Clearly the founders of BSA did not mean straight as in heterosexual, but straight as in honest. A concept that clearly escapes the small cowardly brain of Mr. Zimmerman. His moral indignation is repugnant and shameful. 

He sites a case of molestation of scouts by a scoutmaster. Unfortunately, pedophiles exist in our society in our churches, in schools, in sports and in BSA, but deviant sick individuals are just that and are not in anyway indicative of "gay morality". In fact pedophilia has no more to do with gay rights than does pedophiles that pray on girls, indicate how healthy heterosexual men interact with children.

And although I support freedom of speech this column by Zimmerman is nothing more than false hate mongering. It is beneath our local paper to give voice to such nonsense. Let Mr. Zimmerman find any one of the many anti-gay forums to spew his hate.  He belongs there.

We believe in equal rights for all in the US. That is what the Constitution grants American citizens...all American citizens.

I strongly recommend that Woody Zimmerman and The Atlantic Highlands Herald research real science and look at real facts instead of spreading a hateful message that has absolutely no place in our community.

Sincerely,

Wendy Shankin-Cohen

Atlantic Highlands, NJ