S. Ct. (5-4) Won’t Temporarily Stop N.Y. Ruling that Orthodox Jewish Yeshiva U. Recognize “LGBTQ Student Group”
From Yeshiva Univ. v. YU Pride Alliance, decided today by the Supreme Court:
Applicants Yeshiva University and its president seek emergency relief from a non-final order of the New York trial court requiring the University to treat an LGBTQ student group similarly to other student groups in its student club recognition process. The application is denied because it appears that applicants have at least two further avenues for expedited or interim state court relief.
First, applicants may ask the New York courts to expedite consideration of the merits of their appeal. Applicants do not assert, nor does the Appellate Division docket reveal, that they have ever requested such relief. Second, applicants may file with the Appellate Division a corrected motion for permission to appeal that court’s denial of a stay to the New York Court of Appeals, as the Appellate Division clerk’s office directed applicants to do on August 25. Applicants may also ask the Appellate Division to expedite consideration of that motion.
If applicants seek and receive neither expedited review nor interim relief from the New York courts, they may return to this Court.
Justice Alito, joined by Justices Thomas, Gorsuch, and Barrett, dissented:
Does the First Amendment permit a State to force a Jewish school to instruct its students in accordance with an interpretation of Torah that the school, after careful study, has concluded is incorrect? The answer to that question is surely “no.” The First Amendment guarantees the right to the free exercise of religion, and if that provision means anything, it prohibits a State from enforcing its own preferred interpretation of Holy Scripture. Yet that is exactly what New York has done in this case, and it is disappointing that a majority of this Court refuses to provide relief.
Yeshiva University hosts our nation’s largest Jewish undergraduate institution. That “program is structured to help students embrace the Jewish faith and engage with the secular world from a foundation of Torah values.” Thus, Yeshiva expects its undergraduate students “to live in accordance with halachic norms and Torah ideals.”
A student group, the YU Pride Alliance (the Alliance), “vehemently disagreed” with Yeshiva’s interpretation of Torah with respect to sexual relations between members of the same sex, so it applied for recognition as an
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