GALA displeased with Malloy's response
Observer Staff Report
Notre Dame and Saint Mary's gay and lesbian alumni group, GALA ND/SMC, is considering legal action against the University, claiming prohibition of GALA ads in The Observer is discrimination.
Proposal of litigation is a result of what GALA chairman John Blandford called an "pathetic … and unsatisfactory" response from University president Father Edward Malloy to provide evidence justifying the University's advertising policy,
"We are seeing what our legal options are," Blandford said. "We are looking into pursuing legal action. We know that some First Amendment issues are at stake here. We are consulting with national organizations on the issue."
Blandford asked Malloy in an Aug. 31 letter to show that GALA's mission statement "espoused positions contrary to the moral teaching of the Catholic Church" — the University's official standard for rejecting ads.
Malloy did not respond to that request, GALA vice president Lisa Karle said.
"We feel that it didn't address what [Blandford] had written," Karle said. "He expressly asked for evidence as to how we espouse teachings contrary to those of the Catholic Church. There is still no evidence of that."
"[GALA] has not, nor will it, espouse positions that contravene official Church teaching," Blandford said.
Karle expressed interest in discussing this issue further with Malloy and assistant to the president Chandra Johnson, who serves as spokesman for the office of the president on Observer-related issues.
Johnson could not be reached for comment last night.
Malloy also wrote to Blandford, "The current controversy surrounding this issue is not based upon a new policy but rather a longstanding one, despite the fact that advertisements have occasionally appeared without authorization over the course of the past several years."
Observer Editor in Chief Michelle Krupa said the policy was presented to the independent, student newspaper in an Aug. 23 letter from Malloy's office. Before that date, there was no documented policy restricting advertising from groups whose missions do not support Church teaching.
All News Stories for Thursday, September 23, 1999