"Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he."
-- Proverbs 29:18, King James Bible (KJV)

Monday, February 29, 2016

Nothing is Impossible, Even in Law, as U.S. Supreme Court Justice Thomas Breaks 10-Year Silence and Asks Questions During Oral Argument

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas shocked the American legal world on Monday by asking questions during oral argument. Robert Barnes has the story at the Washington Post in For first time in 10 years, Justice Clarence Thomas asks questions during an argument.

Monday was the first time that the Supreme Court had held oral arguments since the passage of Justice Antonin Scalia, whose Bench Chair was draped in black during the sessions.

Mark Walsh at SCOTUSblog explains the traditional black draping that traces back into the 19th century in Courtroom draping for Justice Scalia.

Despite the traditional honor that is accorded by the U.S. Supreme Court to a Justice who just passed, Scalia will remain a controversial figure among various factions, and one can read positive and negative about him, even from those who were his law clerks and perhaps knew him better than most. Many of the decisions of the Supreme Court in which Scalia was on a 5-4 majority still mark the American political and judicial landscape, for better or worse.