Nonetheless, the Court of Appeals determined that Antebi had no standing to file his suit. Their basis? One provision of the Leonard Law reads, "Any student enrolled in a private postsecondary institution that has made or enforced any rule in violation of subdivision (a) may commence a civil action to obtain appropriate injunctive and declaratory relief as determined by the court." This provision, the court concluded, means that a student must be enrolled at the college he is suing at the time of the lawsuit in order to sue. Antebi graduated shortly before he filed his lawsuit; therefore he could not file his lawsuit.
This interpretation renders the Leonard Law meaningless. Under this interpretation, if a college wishes to avoid a lawsuit from a complaining student, they simply expel the student. The student is no longer "enrolled" at the college, and any violation of his First Amendment rights must be overlooked by the courts. If a student is expelled for stating that homosexuality is a sin, he has no recourse; if a student is expelled for stating that he opposes the war in Iraq, he has no recourse.
Antebi is now appealing his case to the California Supreme Court. His allies include the ACLU and the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education. Is Antebi often offensive? Yes. Have his rights been violated? Yes. As long as colleges quash free speech they find disadvantageous, colleges will never be institutions of higher learning. The same people who quashed Antebi routinely quash diversity of thought.
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