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A Cub Scout Asked a Lawmaker About Gun Control. Then He Got Kicked Out of His Den

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Updated: | Originally published: ;

A Colorado Cub Scout was booted from his den last week after asking a state Senator tough questions on several sensitive topics, including gun control.

On Oct. 9, 11-year-old Ames Mayfield and other Scouts gathered for an event with Colorado state Sen. Vicki Marble. During the event, Ames Mayfield pressed the Senator about her record on guns. At one point during his lengthy and well-researched question he said, “why on earth would you want somebody who beats their wife to have access to a gun?”

He also asked the Senator about controversial comments she made in 2013 about black Americans’ health. His mom, Lori, recorded the exchanges.

Lori Mayfield told the New York Times that on Oct. 14, a local Cub Scouts leader told her that Ames Mayfield was not welcome to return to his pack. “He let me know in so many words that the den leader was upset about the topic of gun control,” she said. “It was too politically charged.”

A representative from the Scouts says the 11-year-old Mayfield was not removed from any Cub Scout pack over his gun questions. In a sent statement to TIME, the group said they “worked closely with the family to find a den that meets his and his family’s needs.”

“We are pleased that this matter has been resolved and that the Scout is continuing his participation in our programs,” the statement reads. “While the Scout was never removed from any Cub Scout pack, we worked closely with the family to find a den that fits his and his family’s needs.”

It continued: “The Boy Scouts of America is wholly non-partisan and does not promote any one position, product, service, political candidate or philosophy…Our diverse group of volunteer leaders helps reinforce our belief that the commonalities that bind us together are far greater than any differences that exist among us.”

State Senator Marble told the Denver Post that she does not blame Ames Mayfield for asking questions because she believes there was “an element of manipulation involved.”

“It wasn’t much different from the questions I normally field in other meetings,” her statement to the Post reads in part. “The invitation to meet with the Scouts was never intended to cause friction and controversy.”

Lori Mayfield denied pushing Ames Mayfield to ask the questions, saying in several interviews that that she only helped him to print them and reminded her son to be respectful. “There were kids who asked about fracking, about the border wall, about fossil fuels,” she told Colorado’s 9News. “In the midst of that, it didn’t seem like gun control was that different.”

Former U.S. Representative from Arizona Gabby Giffords, who was shot in the head at a political event in 2011, has also weighed in on the incident, commending Ames’ “courage.”

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