Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

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No More Entry: "Equal Justice Under the Law"

This news has me nodding my head in agreement or, at least, in half-agreement with Justices Breyer and Ginsberg.  The closing of the stately and impressive main entrance to the Supreme Court building is--at a minimum--"unfortunate."  I do not presume to know whether or not it is "unjustified" but I do hope that this and similar measures shutting off access (or, at any rate, making such access difficult and unpleasant) does not become a permanent feature of American life.  There is just something about it that does not suit our character as a people or our stature as a nation.  It may, indeed, be necessary in the face of real threats that cannot otherwise be handled or prevented, but it seems to me that we need to do more to remind ourselves that not every threat can be eliminated.  The example this posture sets does not appeal.  We appear, at once, to be punishing ourselves and also cowering in fear.  I will not go so far as to say that such a posture is always unjustified . . . but I will say this much:  I don't like it.
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That is very sad. We are imprisoning ourselves, becoming a locked-up nation. I know we are different from someplace like North Korea and Cuba that prevent people from leaving and are locked up in their own ways. We are still free in that sense. Yet we are locking up in other ways, to keep people out. Yes, maybe it cannot be helped, as this is just the world we live in. Yes, it is hard to like.

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