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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

THE U.S. LEGAL ACADEMY CONFRONTS THE U.S. MILITARY

MEDIA ADVISORY

THE U.S. LEGAL ACADEMY CONFRONTS THE U.S. MILITARYORAL ARGUMENT ON MILITARY RECRUITINGTOMORROW, FRIDAY, OCTOBER 10

WHAT: Forum for Academic and Institutional Rights, Inc. & Society of American Law Teachers, et al. v. Rumsfeld, et al

A coalition of law schools and an organization of almost 900 law professors has sued the U.S. military, challenging the constitutionality of the Solomon Amendment, a federal statute that the military has invoked to demand that law schools affirmatively assist them in their efforts to recruit law students. Law schools had refused such assistance in the past because they have policies against assisting any employer who discriminates on any basis, including on the basis of sexual orientation, and the military’s ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ policy explicitly discriminates against gays and lesbians. The military recently cracked down, threatening to cut off all funds to a university if its law school refused to assist the military.

Judge John C. Lifland will hear oral arguments on the case the morning of Friday, October 10.

WHEN: Friday, October 10, 2003 9:00 – 11:00 a.m.

WHERE: The Courtroom of Judge John C. Lifland U.S. District Court for the District of New JerseyNewark Division Martin Luther King Jr. Federal Building & US Courthouse 50 Walnut Street – Room 4015 Newark, NJ 07101 Tel: (973) 645-3167 This is an open courtroom. Members of the media are encouraged to attend.

WHO: – E. Joshua Rosenkranzo Lead Counsel on the caseo Partner in the NY office of HellerEhrman o Former founding president & CEO of the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law

– Representatives from FAIR – Forum for Academic and Institutional Rights

– Representatives from SALT – Society of American Law Teachers

WHY: To present oral arguments to the Judge so that he can decide whether to prohibit the military from demanding assistance from schools.

The suit alleges that the Solomon Amendment is a blatant violation of the First Amendment rights of academic institutions and faculties to decide what lessons to teach their students and how to teach those lessons. It also alleges that the First Amendment prohibits the Government from insisting that anyone unwillingly carry the Government’s message. The briefs point out that the Solomon Amendment’s sponsors never hid their censorial purpose, to “send a message over the walls of the ivory tower,” and to make law schools understand that there would be a “price to pay” for their “starry-eyed optimism.”

MEDIACONTACT: John Buchanan HellerEhrman 415-772-6715 [email protected] -or- E. Joshua Rosenkranz HellerEhrman 212-847-8748 [email protected] -or- Ellen Snook Publicis Dialog for HellerEhrman 415-445-2290 [email protected]

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