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Brigham Young University Education and Law Journal


Solicitor General Donald Verrilli’s fateful words, uttered in response to a question posed by Justice Samuel Alito during oral arguments in Obergefell v. Hodges,2 likely sent chills up the spines of leaders in faith-based educational institutions, from pre-schools to universities. In Obergefell, a bare majority of the Supreme Court legalized same-sex unions in the United States. Verrilli’s words, combined with the outcome in Obergefell, have a potentially chilling effect on religious freedom. The decision does not only impact educational institutions—the primary focus of this article—but also a wide array of houses of worship. Other religiously affiliated institutions that may be affected include health and social services agencies, such as those working with adoptions 3 and ministering to the needy.4 These educational institutions and other agencies designed to assist the common good run the risk of being shuttered as a form of punishment, to the detriment of many, if they remain true to their faith—a decidedly un- American prospect.

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Brigham Young University Education and Law Journal





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