Sunday, March 19, 2006

The long-running Brentwood Academy case

In Brentwood Academy v. TSSAA, the Sixth Circuit took on for the third time the case about the private school that sued and got the U.S. Supreme COurt to rule that the high school sports association in Tennessee is a state actor for purposes of section 1983.

The latest opinion deals with the District Court's disposition.

The dissent begins:

"High school football is a game. Games have rules.

To have federal courts, under the guise of applying the enduring principles of the First Amendment, reverse the ordinary application of high school football recruiting rules—where the core values of the Amendment are not even remotely involved—unduly trivializes these constitutional principles. This is no more a case involving our nation’s ideal of freedom of expression than a case involving a coach who is thrown out of a game for talking back to a referee. This is instead a case involving game participants who challenge the discretionary administration of participation rules. Of course, good lawyers can characterize almost any perceived injustice as a constitutional case (and maybe even an antitrust case to boot), but courts should be hesitant to go along."

No comments: