chapter  7
Pages 13

An opinion, even an order, from a court is only a sheaf of papers; it does not affect anything except as people react to it. The attitudes and expectations of people outside the case may be changed by what the court has to say, to be sure. That is especially true of a case like the cabaret case, that received a lot of publicity and involved a public issue about which many people had intense interest and detailed knowledge. The expectations of club owners and musicians had been changed by the mere fact that the case was widely discussed, framed and filed. These interested parties wanted the three-musician rule to be abolished, and the preliminary relief eliminating the discrimination against horns and percussion only whetted their appetite for more. They had finally conceived their problem in terms of right, and promptly began to turn that into an entitlement. When the court reached its final decision, they thought, naturally enough, that the entitlement had been recognized; the reaction was heightened by the speed with which the court had acted. That sort of change, the change in expectation, in the sense of what is due, is real enough; it certainly would have been channeled and deflected in a different direction if the case had been decided the other way.