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Yale Law v. US Military By: Joseph J. Sabia
FrontPageMagazine.com | Tuesday, October 08, 2002


For decades, U.S. taxpayers have been forced to fork over their hard-earned wages to pay for higher education's anti-American agenda. Leftist professors have been indoctrinating students with multiculturalism, communism, and appeasement for over 40 years. At the heart of academia's assault on America is a deep loathing for our nation's Armed Forces. Thanks to the efforts of retired Congressman Gerald Solomon (R-NY), America is finally fighting back. And students at Yale are not happy about it.

Yale, like many elite colleges and universities, banned the U.S. military from recruiting on its campus because of (1) opposition to the federal ban on homosexuals openly serving in the military and (2) general hatred for the superiority of our Armed Forces. Some colleges have even gone so far as to ban the Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) from their campuses.

In response to the trend of discrimination against the U.S. military, Congressman Gerald Solomon proposed an amendment in 1996 to stop taxpayer subsidization of anti-military propaganda. The Solomon Amendment bans the disbursement of federal funds from the Departments of Defense, Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education to educational institutions that (1) prevent ROTC from operating or (2) prevent "the Secretary of a military department or Secretary of Transportation from gaining entry to campuses, or access to students (who are 17 years of age or older) on campuses, for purposes of military recruiting."

In past years, Yale Law School banned representatives of the Judge Advocate General (JAG) Corps from participating in its fall interview programs. This ban was justified by Yale because JAG representatives would not sign a "nondiscrimination agreement." Yale's non-discrimination agreement, of course, precluded use of the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy in employment decisions. Last spring, the Bush Administration informed Yale that their banning of JAG recruiters constituted a violation of the Solomon Amendment. And with that, panic set in.

According to the Yale Daily News, Yale received $350 million in federal funding last year, most of which was allocated to the School of Medicine. Fearing the loss of all that money, Yale permitted JAG recruiters to participate in this fall's interviews. Yale President Richard Levin told the Yale Daily News:

There are two parts to the decision. We are letting the recruiters into the job fair because of the threat [of losing federal funding], but it's an interim move while we are in the meantime trying to pursue a solution.

President Levin needs to understand that there is no compromise here. He has two choices — (1) He can insist on his idiotic "nondiscrimination policy" and forego $350 million in federal funding or, (2) he can comply with the Solomon Amendment, celebrate the military, and keep the money.

President Levin's "interim move" has created quite a stir at Yale. Last Friday, over 200 protesters marched around wearing camouflage gags over their mouths to protest President Levin's decision to allow JAG recruiters on campus. According to a statement released to the public, the gags "symbolized the silencing effect" on homosexual members of the military. The protesters marched to the site where the Air Force's JAG Corps was holding interviews and disrupted the meetings. Yale Law School Dean Anthony Kronman actually participated in the protests, proclaiming "Any organization or individual who comes within the orbit of our life must conform with our principles."

Mainstream Americans could not agree more. That is why most folks support banning taxpayers' money going to anti-American, anti-military educational institutions. If Yale wants to be a completely private institution, then fine, it can endorse whatever policies it likes on gay rights, racial quotas, military intervention, etc. But as long as Yale continues to come within the orbit of our wallets, then they will conform with our principles. It's very simple. (If our nation were still adhering to the Constitution, these institutions would not be receiving a dime of federal taxpayer money for any reason anyway.)

John Donahue, the Associate Dean of Research at Stanford Law School, told the Yale Daily News:

Whatever policy the Amendment is thought to serve for active duty military, it certainly is inapplicable for members of a legal team…All citizens have a moral obligation [to oppose the Solomon Amendment].

First, the policy is clear: If the Secretary of Defense deems that an educational institution has prevented "access by military recruiters for purposes of military recruiting to the following information pertaining to students (who are 17 years of age or older) enrolled at that institution (or any subelement of that institution)" then federal funding is cut off. "Military recruiters" includes members of the JAG Corps.

Second, why should citizens feel a "moral obligation" to oppose the Solomon Amendment? The federal government is simply reflecting taxpayers' preferences with regard to how educational moneys are spent. Most Americans are grateful that the Armed Forces of the United States protects our liberty and believe that homosexuality ought not be an issue in determining the qualifications of our servicemen. If a bunch of extremists in academia are unhappy that homosexual servicemen are not holding Gay Pride Parades on the USS Ronald Reagan, then too bad.

Liberals in the academy are finally learning that there is a price to pay for their leftist insanity. In the case of Yale, the price for loathing the American military was a cool $350 million. The price was too steep, so they caved. Let's hope that the Bush Administration keeps up the pressure and teaches higher education a thing or two about honoring the men who serve in our Armed Forces.


Joseph J. Sabia is a Ph.D. candidate in economics at Cornell University.


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