Basketball tournaments on the Sabbath

Marci Hamilton hamilton02 at aol.com
Sat Mar 3 09:25:37 PST 2012


Here is a general question to take us back to the bigger picture.  

 What should the rule for sports associations be in the future?   Schedule tournaments and finals only Mon through Sunday with attention to the religious schedule?    

How can you schedule such a tournament in light of the apparently shared assumptions on this listserv that sporting events should be rearranged for the religious practices of particular teams?   

This is a serious question.  I would be interested in serious answers that do not assume discrimination.

Thanks---Marci

On Mar 3, 2012, at 11:49 AM, "Douglas Laycock" <dlaycock at virginia.edu> wrote:

> Well, I thought the e-mail below was going only to one person. So let me
> provide more context for the comment.
> 
> Of course there are many tolerant people in the evangelical movement,
> including lawyers who do great work on behalf of religious liberty for all.
> They understand that religious liberty is not safe for anyone unless it
> protects everyone. But there are many others, whose work is dedicated to
> issues other than religious liberty, who have not thought about these issues
> and have not gotten that message. In my 25 years in Texas, I met and worked
> with and read reports of the comments of many evangelicals who were
> comfortable with diversity and tolerant of Jews and Muslims, and of many
> others who were not. And all I meant to say was that folks from the second
> group seem to be in control of the Texas Association of Private and
> Parochial Schools.
> 
> Douglas Laycock
> Robert E. Scott Distinguished Professor of Law
> University of Virginia Law School
> 580 Massie Road
> Charlottesville, VA  22903
>     434-243-8546
> 
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: religionlaw-bounces at lists.ucla.edu
> [mailto:religionlaw-bounces at lists.ucla.edu] On Behalf Of Douglas Laycock
> Sent: Saturday, March 03, 2012 11:26 AM
> To: 'Law & Religion issues for Law Academics'
> Subject: RE: Basketball tournaments on the Sabbath
> 
> This morning's story in the Times confirms the unreconstructed Texans
> theory. It looks like the conservative evangelical schools have taken
> control of this organization, and tolerance of diversity has never been one
> of their strengths. 
> 
> Douglas Laycock
> Robert E. Scott Distinguished Professor of Law University of Virginia Law
> School
> 580 Massie Road
> Charlottesville, VA  22903
>     434-243-8546
> 
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: religionlaw-bounces at lists.ucla.edu
> [mailto:religionlaw-bounces at lists.ucla.edu] On Behalf Of Richard D. Friedman
> Sent: Saturday, March 03, 2012 12:19 AM
> To: Law & Religion issues for Law Academics
> Subject: Re: Basketball tournaments on the Sabbath
> 
> The TAPPS website, http://www.tapps.net/, indicates that they agreed to let
> Beren play when presented with the papers, before they were actually filed.
> But the lawyer who signed the complaint -- which included the application
> for the TRO -- confirmed to me that the papers were indeed filed.  I get the
> impression that TAPPS, while saying adamantly that they were going to adhere
> to their schedule, decided they would fold quickly if sued; I think someone
> there finally realized that they were not casting themselves in a favorable
> light.
> 
> Rich Friedman
> 
> At 07:19 PM 3/2/2012, you wrote:
>> It would look less like a discrimination claim and more like an 
>> exemption claim. Judges tend to naively assume that the calendar is a 
>> neutral set of rules, and the sharply different treatment of Sunday and 
>> Saturday here would make it more obvious than usual that that just 
>> isn't true.
>> 
>> By the way, I was confused about chronology. The complaint was filed, 
>> and TAPPS caved, yesterday. There was another story in the Times this 
>> morning. Haven't heard the score of the game.
>> 
>> On Fri, 2 Mar 2012 23:11:44 +0000
>> "Finkelman, Paul 
>> <paul.finkelman at albanylaw.edu>"       <Paul.Finkelman at albanylaw.edu>
> wrote:
>>> I am guessing that the leaders of this organization never dreamed
>> of a Jewish basketball team going to the finals.  They never heard of 
>> Dolph Shayes or Nancy Lieberman.
>>> 
>>> 
>>> 
>>> More seriously:  If the organization (which includes many
>> Christian schools) played games on Sundays, would the Hebrew high 
>> school be in a weaker position?
>>> 
>>> 
>>> 
>>> 
>>> 
>>> *************************************************
>>> Paul Finkelman, Ph.D.
>>> President William McKinley Distinguished Professor of Law Albany Law 
>>> School
>>> 80 New Scotland Avenue
>>> Albany, NY 12208
>>> 
>>> 518-445-3386 (p)
>>> 518-445-3363 (f)
>>> 
>>> paul.finkelman at albanylaw.edu<mailto:paul.finkelman at albanylaw.edu>
>>> www.paulfinkelman.com<http://www.paulfinkelman.com/>
>>> *************************************************
>>> 
>>> ________________________________
>>> From: religionlaw-bounces at lists.ucla.edu
>> [religionlaw-bounces at lists.ucla.edu] on behalf of Ira Lupu 
>> [iclupu at law.gwu.edu]
>>> Sent: Friday, March 02, 2012 6:03 PM
>>> To: Law & Religion issues for Law Academics
>>> Subject: Re: Basketball tournaments on the Sabbath
>>> 
>>> Today's first semi-final: Houston Beren 58, Dallas Covenant 46 --
>> final is after sundown tomorrow evening.
>>> 
>>> Thanks, Doug.
>>> 
>>> On Fri, Mar 2, 2012 at 5:48 PM, Ed Darrell
>> <edarrell at sbcglobal.net<mailto:edarrell at sbcglobal.net>> wrote:
>>> If your position is utterly untenable as a matter of public
>> relations, it may not matter that the other side's state action theory 
>> is very weak. But they had to file the lawsuit before common sense 
>> could prevail.
>>> 
>>> One more demonstration of the value of lawyers.  Good news that
>> they've scheduled the game to fit it in.  Good, good news.
>>> 
>>> Ed Darrell
>>> Dallas
>>> 
>>> ________________________________
>>> From: Alan Brownstein
>> <aebrownstein at ucdavis.edu<mailto:aebrownstein at ucdavis.edu>>
>>> To: Law & Religion issues for Law Academics
>> <religionlaw at lists.ucla.edu<mailto:religionlaw at lists.ucla.edu>>
>>> Sent: Fri, March 2, 2012 3:35:05 PM
>>> Subject: RE: Basketball tournaments on the Sabbath
>>> 
>>> A somewhat  similar lawsuit was litigated by students attending
>> the Portland Adventist Academy (and their parents) against the Oregon 
>> State Activities Association which is a state actor. After 8 years of 
>> litigation, the students succeeded in their state anti-discrimination 
>> claims. See Nakashima v. Bd. Of Educ., 334 Or. 487 (2008)
>>> 
>>> Alan Brownstein
>>> 
>>> 
>>> 
>>> From: 
>> religionlaw-bounces at lists.ucla.edu<mailto:religionlaw-bounces at lists.uc
>> la.edu>
>> [mailto:religionlaw-bounces at lists.ucla.edu<mailto:religionlaw-bounces@
>> lists.ucla.edu>]
>> On Behalf Of Douglas Laycock
>>> Sent: Friday, March 02, 2012 11:48 AM
>>> To: 'Law & Religion issues for Law Academics'
>>> Subject: Basketball tournaments on the Sabbath
>>> 
>>> Some of you may have seen the story in the Times the other day
>> about the Beren Hebrew Academy in Houston, whose basketball team has 
>> reached the state semi-finals of the Texas Association of Private and 
>> Parochial Schools tournament. The semifinal game was scheduled for 
>> tonight; the Academy is Orthodox and observant, and could not play.
>> The other school was willing to reschedule, but the TAPPS Board voted
>> 8-0 not to allow that. Most TAPPS members are church affiliated, and 
>> as a matter of policy, it never schedules games on Sunday.
>>> 
>>> Beren parents and students filed a lawsuit this morning in the
>> Northern District of Texas, alleging unconstitutional religious 
>> discrimination, Texas RFRA, and breach of contract (based on a 
>> provision in the TAPPS bylaws). The complaint's state action theory 
>> was that the game was scheduled to be played in a public school gym, 
>> which is surely not enough. The contract claim looked stronger, 
>> judging only by the complaint.
>>> 
>>> Richard Friedman at Michigan tells me that TAPPS caved as soon as
>> the complaint was filed, and that the game will begin imminently and 
>> will be completed before sunset.  If your position is utterly 
>> untenable as a matter of public relations, it may not matter that the 
>> other side's state action theory is very weak. But they had to file 
>> the lawsuit before common sense could prevail.
>>> 
>>> Douglas Laycock
>>> Robert E. Scott Distinguished Professor of Law University of Virginia 
>>> Law School
>>> 580 Massie Road
>>> Charlottesville, VA  22903
>>>    434-243-8546<tel:434-243-8546>
>>> 
>>> 
>>> _______________________________________________
>>> To post, send message to
>> Religionlaw at lists.ucla.edu<mailto:Religionlaw at lists.ucla.edu>
>>> To subscribe, unsubscribe, change options, or get password, see
>> http://lists.ucla.edu/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/religionlaw
>>> 
>>> Please note that messages sent to this large list cannot be viewed
>> as private.  Anyone can subscribe to the list and read messages that 
>> are posted; people can read the Web archives; and list members can 
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>>> 
>>> 
>>> 
>>> --
>>> Ira C. Lupu
>>> F. Elwood & Eleanor Davis Professor of Law George Washington 
>>> University Law School
>>> 2000 H St., NW
>>> Washington, DC 20052
>>> (202)994-7053
>>> My SSRN papers are here:
>>> http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/cf_dev/AbsByAuth.cfm?per_id=181272#reg
>> 
>> Douglas Laycock
>> Robert E. Scott Distinguished Professor of Law University of Virginia 
>> Law School
>> 580 Massie Road
>> Charlottesville, VA  22903
>>     434-243-8546
>> _______________________________________________
>> To post, send message to Religionlaw at lists.ucla.edu To subscribe, 
>> unsubscribe, change options, or get password, see 
>> http://lists.ucla.edu/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/religionlaw
>> 
>> Please note that messages sent to this large list cannot be viewed as 
>> private.  Anyone can subscribe to the list and read messages that are 
>> posted; people can read the Web archives; and list members can (rightly 
>> or wrongly) forward the messages to others.
> 
> _______________________________________________
> To post, send message to Religionlaw at lists.ucla.edu To subscribe,
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> 
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> 
> _______________________________________________
> To post, send message to Religionlaw at lists.ucla.edu To subscribe,
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> 
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> 
> _______________________________________________
> To post, send message to Religionlaw at lists.ucla.edu
> To subscribe, unsubscribe, change options, or get password, see http://lists.ucla.edu/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/religionlaw
> 
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