In a cutting examination of the nation’s COVID-era state of civil liberties, Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch leveraged a statement in a contentious Title 42 public health order lawsuit to deliver a sobering critique of the surveillance and censorship that pervaded the era.
“One lesson might be this: Fear and the desire for safety are powerful forces. They can lead to a clamor for action—almost any action—as long as someone does something to address a perceived threat,” the justice wrote.
“A leader or an expert who claims he can fix everything, if only we do exactly as he says, can prove an irresistible force. We do not need to confront a bayonet, we need only a nudge, before we willingly abandon the nicety of requiring laws to be adopted by our legislative representatives and accept rule by decree.”