What makes a good judge or justice? The public has a need to know. But simplistic labels, such as "activist," "liberal" and "conservative," are both meaningless and misleading. Perhaps aformer law clerk can offer a different perspective.
I served with David J. Vann as law clerk to Justice Hugo L.Black during the momentous 1953 Term of the Supreme Court. This was the year when Brown v. Board of Education was decided. It was also the year when Chief Justice Vinson died and was replaced by the Governor of California, Earl Warren. And it was also a year in which the members of the Court divided in a series of cases with profound implications for the future, involving unlawful policesurveillance, political restrictions on the right to work, and the use of psychiatry for "enhanced interrogation" of a suspect.
Reich, Charles A.
"A Passion for Justice,"
Touro Law Review: Vol. 26
, Article 3.
Available at: http://digitalcommons.tourolaw.edu/lawreview/vol26/iss2/3