Court at the Crossroads

COVER STORY

The 1984 election may chart the future course of American justice

In the white temple it is always quiet. No lobbyists or reporters hover about the paneled chambers; tall bronze gates seal off the cool marble passageways from the public. The black-robed Justices emerge onto the high bench only to hear the arguments of deferential lawyers, and then vanish again behind a thick velvet curtain. They deliberate in secret, insulated and remote from the hurly-burly of American politics.

In principle, the Justices of the U.S. Supreme Court do not write laws, they merely apply them. They...

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