R’ Efrem Goldberg Reacts to Court Decision Requiring YU to Allow LGBTQ Club on Campus


Yeshiva University is legally required to grant the YU Pride Alliance official club status, a judge ruled Tuesday, June 14 in a landmark case that began April 2021.

Judge Lynn Kotler of the New York County Supreme Court ruled that YU is a non-religious organization subject to the New York City Human Rights Law (NYCHRL), and directed it to “immediately grant plaintiff YU Pride Alliance the full equal accommodations, advantages, facilities, and privileges afforded to all other student groups at Yeshiva University.”

Rabbi Efrem Goldberg of Boca Raton Synagogue (BRS) had the following comments following the courts decision:

I would rather not post about this because it is unlikely to sway opinions and likely to attract criticism. However, I think there are times to stand up for Hashem and His values and say things that would be much easier to be silent about.

This is especially true when it doesn’t seem others are saying it as clearly and non-defensively as I believe it should be said. So here goes:

As I have articulated many times in writing, from the pulpit & in private consultation we must be sensitive to the struggles of those who are trying to fit into multiple worlds including attempting to reconcile their orientation or identity with a Halachically observant lifestyle.

Nevertheless, it is simply unreasonable to expect a Yeshiva (even with a university) to have a club that, no matter the intention, at its core enables the celebration or pride in an activity and a recognition of relationships that the Torah unequivocally prohibits.

Of course, it is reasonable for students in every Yeshiva to expect to be treated respectfully, and to not be bullied or harassed for any reason.

The Torah only addresses homosexuality as a verb, a forbidden act, not as a noun, an identity. A Yeshiva is a space that those drawn to, and struggling with, actions that the Torah provides guidance for can grapple and grow and find love and support.

It is not an environment that someone publicly taking pride in an identity the Torah doesn’t recognize will find the response and support that they are looking for.

YU should be commended and supported for seeking to simultaneously maintain the two truths: bullying and mistreating is unacceptable and intolerable, and the Torah rejects the notion of homosexuality as an identity, nor an activity associated with pride.

Saying all people should be treated with respect but a pride club at a Yeshiva is incompatible and a non-starter doesn’t make me insensitive or a bigot, it makes me loyal to multiple values that are compatible and that I believe Hashem wants us to equally maintain.


  1. Legally speaking, Yeshiva University is not a yeshiva, though. It’s a university. That was a decision made by the administration in 1970. This is the bed that the administration made, and now they have to lie in it.

  2. Wrong ! It’s a Yeshiva and a university they should stand up to Torah values first. What’s next a club for orphans? Ballteshuvas? Gerium? Oh please enough already

  3. I wish yU would’ve also respected students rights to make their own medical decisions and not force them to inject against their will- this is also against Torah values.

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