- The Washington Times - Wednesday, August 28, 2002

BOSTON (AP) Harvard Law School will allow official on-campus recruiting by the military this year rather than risk costing the university $328 million in federal funds.
For more than a decade, the law school has prohibited recruiters who discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation from using its facilities, including its career services office. The military has a "don't ask, don't tell" policy concerning homosexuality, but openly homosexual military personnel can be discharged.
The Air Force demanded that the law school change its policy by July 1 to comply with a 1996 law that was passed after complaints that some military recruiters were being kept off campuses. Otherwise, Harvard University could lose the 16 percent of its annual budget that comes from the government. Student financial aid would not be affected.
The law school was granted a one-month extension to study the issue but told the Air Force on July 29 that it would change the policy.
"I believe that an overwhelming majority of the Law School community opposes any form of discrimination based on sexual orientation," Dean Robert Clark wrote in an e-mail sent to students Friday. "At the same time, most of us reluctantly accept the reality that this University cannot accept the loss of federal funds."
Mr. Clark declined further comment Monday.
Air Force spokeswoman Valerie Burkes said the military had asked other schools to change their policies but refused to discuss individual cases. Miss Burkes said Harvard's decision was "consistent with applicable federal statutes."
Many universities appear to have already made such exceptions to their nondiscrimination policies. Stanford University, for instance, allows military recruiting on campus on the grounds that the military's policy is not explicitly discriminatory, spokesman Jack Hubbard said.
Harvard Law's decision could be seen as further reconciliation between the military and the university, which kicked the ROTC off campus during the Vietnam War and later stripped its university funding because of the policy on homosexuals. In September, Harvard President Lawrence H. Summers praised the ROTC, and some alumni have petitioned to return it to campus.
But Adam Teicholz, president of Lambda, the law school's student homosexual male and lesbian rights organization, said it was "cynical of the Bush administration to wield their control of school funds as a political weapon."

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