You’ve heard of the Supreme Court, right? I mean, every American should know at least.
Nine very, very important people, dealing with matters where laws…..start to fuck up very, very intricately.
When the cards fall just right, matters within the 50 states are allowed to escalate, and become federal….or something like that.
While I can’t speak on the specifics of their day-to-day matters, I do know this, the choices they make for specific situations often set a powerful precedent.
State governments often must change their tune because of what this team lawmasters happened to say.
They put out a certain fire with the water and dirt of their own……..and all must thereby imitate.
No matter who they are, or where they’re from.
Did you know flag burning is legal? Yeah, that’s a fire put out by leaving it on. I mean, we do need pilot lights. I wouldn’t have anyone arrested for such a brute form of protest, but I wouldn’t want punishment for it either.
Anyway, the supreme court is pretty dragon-brained, wouldn’t you say?
I look at their faces, with a certain lack of stress and a long and dreamy gaze, and I think these people are thinking, “I am very humbly keeping things from being less terrible in general”.
For the most part, I agree. Any not-self-congratulating liberal-leaning person should appreciate the hell out of them.
With all the lettering legislators and enforcing executives, you need a third thing. You need someone to able to look at existing practices and say “hold up a minute, we can change the rules right here and now”.
It makes me proud to be an American. Even if the nomination process is pretty freaky, and the justices may have agendas of their own, that can be called somewhat insincere.
Because what I see from the likes of those folks in robes, especially when it comes to expanding the rights of people, is someone truly cognizant of the weight of their actions.
They know exactly how much credit to give themselves, because few really can do so much for so long with so little.
They live their oldest days being the umpires of human dignity….and it doesn’t look like they’ve done too terribly so far.
But here’s my point….my wish….I wish people could discern….just how they feel when thinking about the super-judges on the bench.
It’s kind of an ache that lacks belligerence and admiration. I think you could call it envy. Like a dragon looking at a much bigger and more elegant dragon.
Like an urge to crawl around and hope that somehow, you’ll be able to roar as loud as they do. Like you could just shove people out of your way.
Have people respect your excess. Have people irritated by your mistakes, but somehow, benefit from them.
People dream of making others defy what they thought their humanity was supposed to be, and become, somehow, tougher but more dignified at the same time.
And that unfortunately is what you see in the heads of everyone if you just peer into them hard enough.
You want to take one unpleasant situation and use it to make other situations more pleasant. You want to be able to vote for how people should act, and have others be inspired to do the same thing.
You want…to be able to tell the world…”hey look, buddy, I see where you’re both coming from, but I’ve got to make a decision, and I’ve got to make some people sheepish and regretful and others…let’s say, giddy to be on the right path in the first place”.
The problem with complaining about people being judgmental is that we are better at understanding how badly other people want to see themselves as not bad people than we actually say we are.
The informing of rights before one’s arrest is a great example of something nobody would do if it wasn’t explicitly conjured up as response to other bad situations.
But it also embodies a lot of what makes someone so terribly hard to criticize.
People almost always give some room to their opposition. They almost always give them a chance to conform to their idea of what “being nice” is. They at the very least daydream of their enemies never doing what must have made them worth fighting in the first place.
People are sly and crafty judges with a decent sense of what makes someone else feel like they’re knowingly defying their own ideas about how to be a decent human being.
And that’s the essence of cultural stalemates. The thin line of bold rebellion versus crude defiance.
When the justices strike their gavel…or…read their decision or whatever the hell it is, they know it’s weird to be in such a position, that’s very tempting to have that power.
I admire that I live in a time when so many people aspire this much to be so very reasonable and just, even without such responsibility.
And feel sad we have yet to really invalidate those cruelest among us who feel like agents of proper and heartfelt excess.
So much rage is made of trying to find justice against those who knowingly try to constrict the will of others through indirect actions they know are worthy of that rage. I can’t feel hatred for those people anymore since I know how brightly they burn with a desire to be not the stereotypes of righteous justice.
That cognizance of hoping one situation becomes somehow, another better one, is somewhat wonderfully foolish, but glues society together.
So for now, we go on, very civilized, very keen, very havoc-making, very conflict-laden, until that time comes when we can find a way to diffuse all fury that feels very not actually dangerous.
Perhaps it will come some strange involuntary way, without the help of the insightful and powerless like yours truly.
Just as justices do something as grandiose as shifting the flow of history, in a way that practically inspired time travel, most of us ache for that largeness of yield of effort.
We envy those who can do a lot with very little, but very careful actions, who know their place, though have a very nice place.
We look longingly at they who are trying to prove that they’re the ones who really have a good grip on the dragon’s snout. Like they’re got the fire that somehow doesn’t burn.
Like they’re in a big chair, despite knowing all chairs are only so big.
I still believe that very profound ache, that very plain zeal which can hardly be called moral, which comes ugly or gorgeous quite easily,
is the key to us coming closer to what we think a really nice human being could ever be.
We should envy the kinder future and despite all, follow the very active urge to feel more worthy of ourselves.
We shouldn’t denigrate the part of ourselves that feels one trillion ways humble and one trillion ways powerful, just shape it into something superior.
For the goal of justice may be: emotional alignment good enough to deter any such need for the unjustifiable.