The dramas of political power and legal authority are mesmerizing. From the creation of the first civil society to today, there is no shortage of debate about how an ideal society should function. Parashat Shof'tim outlines a mulit-tiered system for the Israelites' political system that includes judges, kings, priests, and prophets.
People who search for the origins of Lady Justice might investigate 16th-century depictions of a blindfolded woman holding scales. Perhaps they might recognize an allusion to this figure in Parashat Shof’tim when the Bible commands us to dispense and uphold justice: “You shall not twist judgment. You shall not recognize any face or take any bribery, for a bribe blinds the eyes of the wise and perverts the words of the righteous” (Deut.16:19).