I enjoyed reading this lengthy essay about Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, who has been vilified like no other Supreme Court justice in this country's history. The reason progressives hate him is that they fear him. Justice Thomas is a consistent, principled, unapologetic originalist. He believes that old mistakes are still mistakes and that, in consequence, they ought to be overruled at the earliest convenience. He has contempt for the legal academy, which is filled with bitter, resentful, hyperpartisan elites. (One of them, a particularly thuggish individual of no great repute, called Justice Thomas a "lunatic.")
I used to think that progressives hated Justice Thomas because he dared leave their plantation (blacks are not supposed to have minds of their own), but now I think they hate him because they know that his jurisprudence is powerful. He doesn't defer to precedent when he thinks the precedent wrong, as Justice Antonin Scalia sometimes does. He is willing to bite the bullet and overrule long lines of cases, some of which, such as privacy, the Commerce Clause, the Free Speech Clause, the Second Amendment, and the Cruel and Unusual Punishment Clause, are near and dear to progressives.
I hope Justice Thomas, who is now 63, has 30 more years on the bench. That will give him half a century of service and make him the longest-serving Supreme Court justice in history. Our law, our politics, and our society will be the better for it.