“The Brethren” Review
“The Brethren” takes a close look at the machine known as the Supreme Court during the Burger years from 1969 to 1975. Looking deeply into the historic infighting, the controversial decisions and the sharp turn from left liberal ideological decisions to the right conservative, “The Brethren” exposes closely hidden secrets and the power of the machine that has never been seen before. The words “All deliberate speed” proved to haunt Burger along with his vote switching and indecisions, making his tenure of the Supreme Court mediocre at best. His desire to leave a legacy equal to that of the Warren court left him more concerned about perception than ...view middle of the document...
Now in 1969 the words are coming back to haunt him. He is taking an absolutist position, requiring that the desegregation happen immediately. Justice Black is threating to dissent, he argues that if the Court does not require a standard of immediately, they are not showing unanimity and it will look like they are backtracking on the original ruling.
Burger finds himself trying to bring the court together; his response is to write an opinion that everyone will agree on, he is determined to show his leadership skills. The vote is split down the middle 4 to 4, Black, Douglas, Marshall and Brennan all in agreement for immediate desegregation, while Burger, Harlan, White and Stewart were for a more practical eventually approach. Burger’s opinion was riddled with questions and to off base, Brennan writes his own opinion which is then backed by the others. Showing a unanimous front was most important; secondly it showed their commitment to desegregation. Black was satisfied with the results, “All deliberate speed” was declared no longer constitutionally permissible, and no delay would be permitted. However, the fact that the opinion was handed down, and there was an unanimous vote, did not mean that there was a coming together of the minds, nor did Burger lead his Court to the findings. The Justices began to question Burgers abilities and his leadership skills.
One the famous court ruling Miranda was under fire, an under court wanted to use information that was not given under Miranda and the Justices split again, would not allow the statements for any reason because it would undermine the original...