PINEVILLE (LCNEWS) — Louisiana College will file an objection to US Magistrate Mark Hornsby’s precedent-setting July 12 denial to dismiss a lawsuit that alleges racial discrimination.
In February, job applicant Joshua Bonadona filed the lawsuit, alleging he was not selected for a football coaching position based on his Jewish heritage.
LC attorneys said the ruling “did not involve any findings of fact or weigh the complaint’s merits; it assumed the allegations to be true for purposes of the motion. The allegations are unwarranted and vehemently denied.”
“The magistrate’s ruling reflects a technical legal question that has no bearing whatsoever with the veracity of the allegations in the suit,” said Louisiana College President Dr. Rick Brewer.
The Associated Press reports that Bonadona’s attorney said he hasn’t found another case in which a court has ruled that Jews are racially protected under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
“I’m not a lawyer and have no opinion on pure legal issues,” Brewer said. “However, I understand from our attorneys that the magistrate, in deeming an allegation of Jewish ancestry to constitute a race as opposed to a religion for purposes of Title VII, may have committed an error of law. The magistrate cited no provisions of the statute nor any cases which analyze Title VII in support of such a proposition but pointed instead to cases which analyzed other federal statutes.”
Brewer said Bonadona was not selected for the position because his application and interview responses revealed “he was not the best candidate for the position. And anyone who would examine my criteria for employment would readily surmise that I have not made, nor do I make any connection to race or gender in the hiring process.”
“The College does not dispute that it elected to not extend an offer of employment to the applicant because responses provided on his application and during his face-to-face interview were less than satisfactory and did not comport with the College’s commitment to hire leaders and educators who reflect the College’s mission,” LC’s legal counsel said. “The College disputes that any considerations of race factored into these deliberations.”
“There are no facts to support the lawsuit’s allegations, which will be proved to be unwarranted and factually incorrect,” Brewer added. “Further, I believe the term ‘Jewish blood’ was cited by the lawyer in the suit for its incendiary affect.”
“We intend to file an objection to the magistrate’s recommendations as being contrary to applicable law and jurisprudence. But if we must go to trial, we look forward to defending these unmerited claims and falsehoods, and the dismissal of the lawsuit,” Brewer said. “We prefer that people not jump to conclusions regarding the facts in this case, and would not depend only upon what is alleged in the lawsuit.”