Brickbat: Religious Rites


Yeshiva University, in New York City, has its roots in a school teaching Jewish immigrants and their children Hebrew, the Talmud and some secular subjects. Today, it still requires male students to study the Talmud daily and mandates that every door on campus have a mezuzah. It also encourages all students to take part in religious study in Israel, and 80 percent do. But a state judge has ruled the university is not a religious organization and therefore not exempt from the city's human rights law. The judge ordered the school to give official recognition to its LGBT club, the YU Pride Alliance, noting that the university's charter describes the school as "an educational corporation under the education law of the State of New York" that was "organized and operated exclusively for educational purposes." The judge said that if the school wished to be considered a religious organization it could have put that in its charter.