welcome to snowball


Welcome to the US Courthouse. Meet your partner on the bench outside of the door. Read the rest of this when you have found each other.


Say hello. Have you guys ever been here before? It’s cool to sit on the steps of the US Courthouse.   


First have some questions between the two of you:


  1. What do you know about the court system?

  2. Is there a court case that you think about?

  3. What was your last experience with the law?

  4. What would you hope the legal system would do for the people?


As you discuss, take a walk around the building.  There’s a nice garden near the corner. Read about the history and some quotes from Shakespeare.


More about the courthouse: The design of the new United States Courthouse in downtown Los Angeles is both modern in spirit and rooted in classic principles of federal architecture. It uses traditional architectural elements such as processional steps, grand public spaces, and enduring materials like limestone to achieve a strong civic identity. Envisioned as a "floating" cube, the building employs an innovative structural engineering concept that cantilevers the glass volume above its stone base, making the courthouse contemporary in material, technology, and form.


Located on a prominent block in the city's Civic Center neighborhood, the 10-story, 633,000-square-foot building contains 24 courtrooms and 32 judicial chambers. It houses the U.S. District Court of the Central District of California, accommodates the needs of the U.S. Marshals Service, and provides trial preparation space for the U.S. Attorney’s Office and Federal Public Defender.


Sustainability was a driving factor for the courthouse from the beginning. It achieved LEED® Platinum certification and meets the GSA’s 2020 energy objective. The building incorporates a variety of sustainable design features, including a rooftop photovoltaic array that is intended to generate 507,000 kWh of renewable energy on an annual basis.




TOUCHSTONE. Wast ever in court, shepherd?

CORIN No, truly.

TOUCHSTONE Then thou art damned.

CORIN Nay, I hope.

TOUCHSTONE Truly, thou art damned like an ill-roasted egg, all on one side.

CORIN For not being at court? Your reason?

TOUCHSTONE Why, if thou never wast at court, thou never sawest good manners; if thou never sawest good manners, then thy manners must be wicked; and wickedness is sin, and sin is damnation. Thou art in a parlous state, shepherd.

CORIN Not a whit, Touchstone: those that are good manners at the court are as ridiculous in the country as the behavior of the country is most mockable at the court.

(As You Like It, 3.2.30)


Why, may not that be the skull of a lawyer? Where be his quiddities now, his quillities, his cases, his tenures, and his tricks? Why does he suffer this mad knave now to knock him about the sconce with a dirty shovel, and will not tell him of his action of battery? Hum! This fellow might be in's time a great buyer of land, with his statutes, his recognizances, his fines, his double vouchers, his recoveries: is this the fine of his fines, and the recovery of his recoveries, to have his fine pate full of fine dirt? Will his vouchers vouch him no more of his purchases, and double ones too, than the length and breadth of a pair of indentures? The very conveyances of his lands will scarcely lie in this box; and must the inheritor himself have no more, ha?

(Hamlet, 5.1.97), Hamlet to Horatio


Yea, and so used it that were it not here apparent

that thou art heir apparent--But, I prithee, sweet

wag, shall there be gallows standing in England when

thou art king? and resolution thus fobbed as it is

with the rusty curb of old father antic the law?

Do not thou, when thou art king, hang a thief.

(1 Henry IV, 1.2.54), Falstaff to Prince Hal


Between two hawks, which flies the higher pitch;

Between two dogs, which hath the deeper mouth;

Between two blades, which bears the better temper:

Between two horses, which doth bear him best;

Between two girls, which hath the merriest eye;

I have perhaps some shallow spirit of judgement;

But in these nice sharp quillets of the law,

Good faith, I am no wiser than a daw.

(2 Henry VI, 2.4.17), Warwick to Lords


When law can do no right,

Let it be lawful that law bar no wrong:

Law cannot give my child his kingdom here,

For he that holds his kingdom holds the law.

(King John, 3.1.189), Constance to Cardinal Pandulph