Professor Michael Helfand, "Illegal Discrimination or Religious Freedom?" -- The Forward
Professor Michael A. Helfand's opinion article, "Illegal Discrimination or Religious Freedom? Understanding Yeshiva University's Case Against the YU Pride Alliance," is published in the Forward. The article considers Yeshiva University's request that the Supreme Court intervene in its litigation against the YU Pride Alliance, an LGBTQ student organization.
Excerpt from "Illegal Discrimination or Religious Freedom? Understanding Yeshiva University's Case Against the YU Pride Alliance"
The court rarely grants applications for emergency relief. Instead, it typically allows cases to percolate up through the legal system and then decides the cases on the merits. In this case, that would mean waiting for the litigation to work its way through the New York state courts before rendering an opinion.
There are benefits to a more patient approach. It ensures that the Supreme Court generally issues decisions after the case has fully wound its way through the judicial system, ensuring that there has been ample briefing before multiple lower courts; by contrast, granting requests for emergency relief is, by its nature, issuing a decision when under the gun.
At the same time, a request of the Supreme Court to delay the implementation of a lower court order has been most common in First Amendment cases. And government rules that require a religious institution to act in a manner contrary to its religious beliefs is the kind of consideration that has, in recent years, gotten the court to grant this very kind of emergency relief.
The complete article may be found at the Forward.