Justice Parker Lee McDonald
Supreme Court history is full of anecdotes about newly appointed Justices whose first visit to the Court was marred by some staffer's ignorance of the new judge's identity. Justice Stephen Grimes had his car towed on his first visit, for example. But no such story tops that of Justice Parker Lee McDonald, the Court's 68th Justice.
On his first day, Justice McDonald was taking a leisurely stroll through his new office building, whistling happily to himself. When he chanced into the rotunda area, a security guard walked up to Justice McDonald and informed him that whistling was strictly forbidden in the building. Without batting an eye, Justice McDonald looked the hapless guard in the eye and informed him that he would whistle as he pleased, given the fact he was a new Justice.
During his distinguished career on the Court, Justice McDonald also was known for his forthright appraisal of views espoused by other Justices. One of his trademarks was to draw a smiley face on Court papers that pleased him and a frowny face on those that did not. Many young law clerks felt they finally had proven themselves when their work first earned one of those difficult-to-obtain smiley faces!
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