BAR 10:06, Nov/Dec 1984
The Verdict on Advertisements for Near Eastern AntiquitiesDubitante
Supreme Court Justices are paid to decide difficult cases. In 1951, however, Justice Felix Frankfurter heard a case he couldnt decide.a His brethren voted to affirm the decision of the court below. But Justice Frankfurter couldnt make up his mind. So he took the unusualperhaps uniquestep of filing an opinion neither affirming nor reversing, but dubitante, in doubt.
Editors are supposed to have opinions. Thats what they editorialize about. And BARs editor is certainly not shy about expressing his opinionsforcefully and unequivocally. But on the subject about which I write now, I must file dubitante. Perhaps some readers will come to my aid.