“How glorious to be an American citizen. In so many countries, the rights of citizens are not worth the paper they are printed on. But here, any citizen—good, bad, indifferent, famous, infamous, or obscure—may call upon the courts to vindicate his constitutional rights and expect that call to be honored.”
These are the opening lines of an opinion by Judge Jed Rakoff granting bail to Marc Dreier, a lawyer indicted in a notorious theft case. Beautiful words reflecting an ideal that is many times more ephemeral than reality.