Nowadays we all know more about the Kardashians than we do about the names of our Supreme Court Judges. With the dawn of the internet age, it is time that we lift the veil. The opportunity to glimpse at the personality of a Supreme Court Judge should not be an event reserved for those in the know.
While in law school, I had the privilege to hear Justice L’Heureux-Dube speak. She remarked that she dissented more at the Supreme Court of Canada than she ever did at the Quebec Court of Appeal and attributed this difference to the difference in background of the judges. The Quebec Court of Appeal was far more homogenous than the Supreme Court of Canada, where judges came from across the country. Language, education, legal training, regional identity, gender, and other axes of identity all influenced the judges’ perspectives on justice and often times led to divergent interpretations of the law.
Merely posting a small biography of a Supreme Court Judge is no longer enough in a time where information flows freely. A written biography does not capture the essence of the people that shape decisions.
A short and engaging video introducing the judges should be added to the Supreme Court of Canada’s website. These videos would leak clues into the personalities behind the monolithic voice of the Supreme Court of Canada. After all, humanizing the judges might spark more interest in their decisions. And a well-informed populace makes for a strong democracy.