The Law: Verdict on Douglas

The special wooden carts for each Justice—stacked high with papers from the backlog of nearly 1,000 cases that accumulated during the three-month summer recess—were in place in the Supreme Court's conference room. One week earlier than ever before in the court's history, the Justices were on hand to get a head start on the work of the new term. But as the nine men gathered in the room last week, the most troubling task of judging they faced was not to be found in the dry briefs or research papers. How were they to deal with a human condition—the physical and...

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