“How Do You Feel About Writing Dissents”? Thurgood Marshall's Dissenting Vision for America
Department of History and Political Science
Journal of Supreme Court History
On October 2, 1967, with his family, friends, and admirers and President of the United States Lyndon B. Johnson in attendance, Thurgood Marshall stood up in the chamber of the Supreme Court of the United States, put his hand on a Bible, and swore to "administer justice without respect to persons, ... [to] do equal right to the poor and to the rich, and that [he would] faithfully and impartially discharge and perform all of the duties incumbent upon [him] ... under the Constitution and laws of the United States." With these words, Marshall became the nation's newest, and first African American, Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court. A clearly emotional Marshall confessed at the time how "he wished his daddy could have been there." Still, Marshall added, he just knew that his father "was on some street corner in heaven shaking his finger and saying, 'I knew my boy would do it.'"
Zelden, C. L. (2017). “How Do You Feel About Writing Dissents”? Thurgood Marshall's Dissenting Vision for America. Journal of Supreme Court History, 42 (1), 77-100. https://doi.org/10.1111/jsch.12136