Oregon Law Review : Vol. 85 No. 4, p. 943-992 : “The Irresistible Force Meets the Immovable Object": When Antidiscrimination Standards and Religious Belief Collide in ABA-Accredited Law Schools
Gerdy, Kristin B.
This Article provides an overview of the conflict between religiously affiliated law schools and the nondiscrimination ideals espoused by the ABA standards and the GLBT community with regard to sexual orientation. In addition, it considers whether both interests can be fully served within a law school community or whether one interest must take precedence. Part I introduces the applicable ABA Standards that govern accreditation of American law schools and gives a brief overview of the creation and evolution of the antidiscrimination standard. Part II explores the First Amendment’s implied right of expressive association— a right that religiously affiliated law schools will likely invoke in adjudication of the conflict. Part III attempts to answer the question of whether the implied right of expressive association permits a religiously affiliated law school to adopt codes of conduct for students and faculty that might exclude practicing homosexuals from employment, and concludes that the First Amendment would protect such action.