Saturday, April 13, 2002

courthouses as icons
A new book from a lawyer in California is about courthouses in California's 58 counties. It looks like an interesting volume. As our new courthouse in New Castle County is having its finishing touches put upon it, I can't help but wonder what it would have looked like if the people planning the building had read this book first. These lines from the article particularly strike me:
American county courthouses are a kind of icon right out of a Norman Rockwell painting: the shade trees around the courthouse square, a handsome domed building with a statue of justice and the grandest ingredient of all:

"Pride," McDevitt said, "civic pride."

The county courthouse, he thinks, is the heart of the diverse regions that make up a state -- "the center for local democracy and the law," McDevitt calls it.
That's not the feeling I get when I look at the new Delaware Justice Center.

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