Lady Justice

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Kim Vanderheiden, “Lady Justice” (2015)

Kim Vanderheiden, “Lady Justice” (2015) 70×100 inches, acrylic, letterpress, pen & ink, solar etching, pencil, watercolor on torn paper collage

Many of our courthouses sport an icon of Lady Justice armed with a sword, which can seem to suggest retribution. Our icon’s scales pit two sides against each other, conjuring corrosive argument and win-or-lose thinking. She is blindfolded rather than seeing truth or expressing compassion. She cuts down and casts out the guilty, ignoring that they, too, are our children. What effect might it have on our justice system if we change our cultural image, our icon, of  Lady Justice?