To my knowledge, and I have spoken to numerous jurists and architects worldwide, no other Supreme Court in the world — including those, such as Israel’s, that face security concerns equal to or greater than ours — has closed its main entrance to the public. And the main entrances to numerous other prominent public buildings in America remain open. I thus remain hopeful that, sometime in the future, technological advances, a Congressional appropriation, or the dissipation of the current security risks will enable us to restore the Supreme Court’s main entrance as a symbol of dignified openness and meaningful access to equal justice under law.
-- Justice Stephen G. Breyer, joined by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, in the Statement Concerning the Supreme Court’s Front Entrance they released yesterday. As is apparent from this final paragraph, the 2 invoked global context in explaining opposition to the decision to close the marble-stepped main entryway of the United States' highest court. From today on, visitors must enter at the much less august side door.