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Berkeley Sea Scout skipper busted on child molestation charges

Hypocrisy meter overload. Blender Paul Barwick has been peppering me with updates to this story, each item containing more “you can’t make this sh*t up” details.

You might recall the story about the Berkeley Sea Scouts, a Berkeley, California-based Boy Scouts sailing group that was denied the use of a public boat slip by the city because of the nonprofit organization’s policy of rejecting atheist and gay members in its ranks. They sued and argued that Berkeley was punishing the organization for exercising its constitutional freedom of association — the right that the U.S. Supreme Court cited in a 2000 ruling upholding the Boy Scouts’ exclusion of gays. That didn’t fly in this case.

[S]tate justices ruled unanimously that the city was entitled to subsidize only organizations that complied with its anti-discrimination rules, and that the scouts were not being prevented from expressing their views or limiting their membership.

…She said Berkeley “reasonably concluded the Sea Scouts did not and could not provide satisfactory assurances because of their required adherence to (the Boy Scouts’) discriminatory policies.”

After all, the Boy Scouts have defended its policies by citing the phrase “morally straight” to excuse its discrimination.

Well, lookee here — how “morally straight” is this?

Sea Scouts leader held on suspicion of molestation.

A longtime Berkeley Sea Scouts leader was arrested Tuesday on suspicion of molesting four boys aboard his boat, police said.

Eugene Austin Evans, 64, of Kensington abused four Sea Scout members on his boat, the SSS Farallon, over the past several years, said Berkeley police Sgt. Mary Kusmiss.

Evans is being held in lieu of $1 million on six felony counts of sexual assault, including allegations of lewd and lascivious acts with a minor, oral copulation with a minor, penetration with a foreign object of a minor and showing harmful material to minors, police said.

But wait, there’s more to this sickness — Evans was the lead plaintiff in the lawsuit challenging Berkeley’s decision to end the group’s rent-free berthing! And it doesn’t stop there — protect your keyboards. Evans was the darling of the moralist set for the lawsuit.

Evans became a hero of the political right when he filed a legal challenge of city policies that deny free city services to organizations which practice discrimination based on sexual preference.

His legal challenge of the city policy was celebrated by uber-conservatives and hailed in hundreds of posts on the Freerepublic.com web site.

Evans is held on a $1 million bail. His alleged victims range between 13 and 17, and law enforcement said it has no idea how long a period of time Evans may have been molesting young boys.

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding

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