Not everyone is welcoming of the Boy Scouts allowing girls into the organization and changing their name to the more apt “Scouts BSA.” Some, like an employee at a hardware store in Virginia, have expressed their disapproval out loud — exhibiting extreme bigotry in the process.
A scout in Purcellville, Virginia, was going from business-to-business for an Eagle Scout project when he and his father stopped inside Nichols Hardware store. There, they tried to explain their reasoning for coming to the store when they were rudely interrupted by the employee in question.
Carly Hamilton, who witnessed the interaction, said she couldn’t believe her eyes.
“I thought it was a joke,” she said. “All of a sudden, the guy behind the counter interrupts the kid loudly, and says, ‘You need to get out of here. We don’t support organizations like you, or yours.’”
The father and the scout left the store. Upon their departure, the employee in question wasn’t done ranting. Hamilton claimed he then said to her, “We don’t support homos. They allow homos in the Boy Scouts now.”
Word of the incident reached social media where angry residents quickly voiced their disapproval of the employee’s actions. Upon being contacted about the employee’s words, a man identified as the manager of the store initially called it “hearsay,” although he also said that if they turned out to be true, the employee would be fired.
And that’s precisely what happened.
On Tuesday, the hardware store (which has been in Virginia since the 1700s) posted a message on its Facebook page, explaining that the employee’s “views certainly do not reflect those of the Nichols Hardware.”
The management took the right course of action in this instance. Everyone is entitled to their views, of course, but to refuse service to an individual based on those views crosses a line that we should not deem acceptable.
The Scouts will undoubtedly face more bigotry in the future, whether it be homophobia or misogyny due to their updated policies in the past few years. However, inclusive changes to their organization are steps in the right direction. In the end, the changes will likely be seen as the right path to have forged. Citizens across America, like those in Purcellville, will hopefully support the Scouts as well in the years ahead.
Banner/Thumbnail Photo Credit: David Manning/Reuters