Monday, May 11, 2009

Judge Diane Wood: Possible Obama Supreme Court Nominee

Judge Diane Wood. Remember that name.

Tomorrow the 7th Circuit Court re-hears an appeal of Lynn Bloh's suit against Shoreline Towers Condominium Association. The case involves the homeowners association's Hallway Rule 1, that said nothing can be hung in the hallways of the complex. Nothing. Not anything.

Lynn Bloch is Jewish & has placed a mezuzah on their doorpost in accordance with Jewish custom. But the rule says "no items in the hallway." The court initially said that the rule was fine since it applied to all religions equally.

But there was one dissenting opinion: Judge Diane Wood.

And her opinion was so well written that the court agreed to re-hear the case. According to Judge Wood, the rule doesn't impact other faiths like it does the Jewish faith. In effect, the rule prohibits observant Jews from living in the complex, & that makes the rule discriminatory:

[I]n a real sense, Hallway Rule 1 makes condominium units at Shoreline Towers functionally unavailable to observant Jews like the Blochs and, if it could be enforced, the rule would effect their constructive eviction. They are faced with a dilemma: a choice between observing their religion as they believe the Torah commands them to do and living in Shoreline Towers. Moreover, Hallway Rule 1 operates exactly as a redlining rule does with respect to the ability of the owner to sell to observant Jews. No such person could buy a unit at Shoreline Towers. The Association might as well hang a sign outside saying “No observant Jews allowed.”

Article from the Sun-Times

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