June 24th, 2009


Ginsburg is close, but not quite

For the first time ever, a silly OkCupid quiz result on my LJ:
The reason I post it here is to say: Close, but not quite. I'm pleased, certainly, that of the current court, it picked Ginsburg for me. She's my current favorite. But this quiz would've done much better with a larger repertoire than just the current court, and then it might've sussed out who I really am: William Brennan.

I started reading opinions of the court in the 1990s, and two Justices in particular struck me, again and again, in a positive and enriching way: Marshall and Brennan.

Thurgood Marshall was the one who showed me new ways of thinking. He was the one whose votes sometimes made me think "wait what?!?!" and then, as I read what he wrote, start to understand how he saw the case, and why it made sense.

Brennan was different. Brennan was the one whose vote I knew before I had to look it up, every time, because I simply had to ask myself, "how would I wish this case decided?" I'd read his opinions for a different reason: they made me think "Yes, this!" long before LiveJournal :) I'd look at the deep examinations of opinions that were essentially my own, and see where they led in greater depth. I'd silently cheer triumphantly, in my head, to see a brilliant new way of explaining some belief of mine, that I'd never have thought of.

With Brennan on the court, I felt like I had a personal representative, like I was on the court without having to do the work.

P.S. Which Justice does this quiz pick for you?