Dissents in important controversies may be expected because they are cases in which it would be difficult for any body of lawyers freely selected to reach an accord. While the public may not understand division in the Court, because of an illusion as to attainable certitude in opinions as to the law, which is notably absent in other fields, it must be remembered that conviction must have its say and that the conservatism of the Court as a judicial body furnishes all the protection that is needed in the long run against capricious overturning of decisions.
As the following chapters demonstrate, the tradition of dissent has facilitated rather than challenged the interest of reason. In so doing, it has contributed to a balance between constitutional stability and change.
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