Washington Post: Resolution opens door to dialogue about Supreme Court, security

August 22, 2010
In The News

Philip Kennicott, the Washington Post's Culture Critic, writes about Rep. Eshoo's resolution calling on the Supreme Court to reopen its main entrance:


The closing of the front doors of the Supreme Court building came as so many incremental attacks on public space do: A news release announced a closure date, chiseled in stone, the decision final. It was done with the bland and peremptory confidence of pure authority, power unlimited by any democratic right to redress.


But now Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.) has joined the ranks of dissenters, but perhaps her dissent will carry more weight. Late last month, she introduced a resolution calling on the Supreme Court to change its mind and reopen the iconic doors. She has more than 30 co-sponsors. She is seeking more allies and says she will reintroduce the resolution in the next Congress if need be.


She says, "I think we can address risk without giving up our ideals, our national ideals in terms of justice, openness and access."


Individuals may find courage within themselves, but when it comes to institutions, courage can be injected only from without. A congressional resolution about a security decision at another branch of government is, at the very least, an outside challenge to do better, to live up to professed ideals. But perhaps it can gin up courage, the way soldiers on a battlefield find a collective courage that is stronger than any singular fortitude. It is a reminder that, as said the president under whose watch the Supreme Court doors were first opened, the most frightening of our enemies is fear.

Read the full article at the Washington Post.