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JUDICIAL DIET

NO WRITER ATTRIBUTED

Last Monday the Supreme Court set Angelo Herndon free. Justice Roberts, speaking for the majority, declared that the Georgia law passed in 1871 was too vague and "necessarily violates the guarantees of liberty embodied in the fourteenth amendment." Although added fuel to the heated debate on the President's proposal for the reorganization of the judiciary was not exactly what the situation called for, the Angelo Herndon decision seems to crystallize the mugwump position which the President's followers take. They admit the imperative need for an independent judiciary in such a case as this, but that doesn't in the least abate their pleas to give the President the power to "change the complexion of the Court".

Obstructionism to them is a one way street. A good disciple of the President will swell with anger when the Court blocks liberal legislation, but it is a very gingerly pat on the back that he gives the Court when it obstructs a Georgia Sedition Law.

Last January Dirk de Jonge was released by the Supreme Court from a sentence under Oregon's Criminal Syndicalism Law. Several weeks ago three Mississippi negroes were granted new trials on the grounds that their confessions had been wrung from them by torture. The decision on the Scottsboro case is well known. No one doubts the good job done by the Court in supporting civil liberties, but appreciation of this part of their work has frequently been lost in a welter of words on the political, personal and economic bias of the Court. It seems that in the heat of debate smoke gets in one's eyes.

Perhaps the only way out is for the liberals to get hold of Lewis Carroll's recipes. A judicious diet of the contents of the little bottle marked "Drink Me", which shuts things up "like a telescope"; then an occasional bite of the cake marked "Eat Me", which opens things out "like the largest telescope that ever was", seems to be just what the President's disciples have been looking for.

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