"The right to comment freely and criticize the action, opinions, and
judgment of courts is of primary importance to the public generally.
Not only is it good for the public; but it has a salutary effect
on courts and judges as well."
James P. Hughes
(1874-1961) Justice of theĀ Indiana Supreme Court (1933-1939)
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Reader comments about this quote:
 -- Mike, Norwalk      
Wow! I cannot believe your rating Mike. So you believe that the courts should be controlled by public opinion rather than a clear reading of the written law, constitution, and case law. Again I am shocked.
 -- Waffler, Smith     
  • 1
    PS: While I agree the public should be free to comment on anything it wishes, but the Judges and courts are suppose to rely on The Constitution, written law, and case law. They are not to be swayed by the heat of public opinion.
     -- Waffler, Smith     
    How about when the courts are completely out of control? Should public opinion have any bearing then? Absolutely, let the Constitution be the strict guideline...not just some unspoken policy of control in the false flag name of "security".
     -- J Carlton, Calgary     
  • 1
    Waffler, I may surprise here you but, you have a great point. My immediate reaction was from the ultimate optimist in me and then your comment brought reality back. My thought was that if all opinions were available to the court, it would effectuate or design that which was not necessarily popular, one side over another, but rather that which is lawful (consistent with the laws of nature and of nature's God and Creator endowed rights). The courts should issue renderings of law, and not participate in public opinion or social engineering. Waffler, thanks. In reality, the first half would get 5 stars, the second half get a thumbs down.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
    J Carlton, said very well.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
    If criticized not on the actions, opinions, and judgments themselves but rather whether or not the same are constitutional or not is very healthy as it keeps the Constitution front and center as the central guide to form critical opinions upon. How many out there who either are for or against the decisions of today base their belief on the Constitution for what it says about the violation of the individual rights of men protected by it? How important would opinions and criticisms aired out be to a juror whose job on the jury is like the jobs of the judiciary? To provide iron clad assurance individual rights are not violated by the law, the application of it, or the potential violation of them by the judiciary. This is how the salutary effect is supposed to be exerted, by the well informed juror who has paid attention to the criticisms and with Constitution in hand reports for duty.
     -- Anon     
    I like it. It is in line with the philosophy of the Founding Fathers when they built this country. The liberty of the people to attack all branches of government, state and federal, is our natural rights in this country. The first amendment is everything! It is what we are as a people.
     -- Elisabeth, Astoria, NY     
    Fine quote which is fair.
     -- rajesh, mysore     
     -- Mary, MI      
    I don't find pressure in criticizing I just want to know how to travel the correct course to the preservation of life.
     -- Fredrick William Sillik, Anytown     
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