By: Mark Glennon -
Over two thousand years ago, Marcus Tullius Cicero devoted his life to a struggle to preserve the best of the Roman Republic – constitutional checks on power, the rule of law and, to a significant degree for the age, democracy and individual rights.
It’s all there in Cicero’s story – all of today’s battles for the same goals. Some of those battles were small and some large, some fought in court and some on the battlefield, but many were ultimately decided not by law or armies but by the power of public opinion.
And so it has been for the centuries since Cicero. A Star Wars sequel gave us a modern adage for the role of public opinion: Liberty dies with thunderous applause.
For those reasons, it’s particularly alarming to see the public’s opinion about the clear illegality of Governor JB Pritzker’s emergency stay-at-home orders, which is indifference.
That indifference is almost universal in Illinois’ press. Editorial condemnation of the order’s illegality has been almost nonexistent. A particularly sad example was an April 23 Chicago Tribune editorial. Flattening the curve is good, it said, so hurrah for extending the order. No mention of its illegality.
A federal court begs to differ, so there’s that . . .
Spot on! Obey the law is important and not optional!
You’re making it difficult when it’s very simple: the vast majority of Illinois residents agree with and voluntarily stay home. We are quite happy to allow other states to open, and see how that goes. Hopefully, it goes well, and Illinois can begin to get back to normal in June.