Desmond Tutu named as one of Lady Hale's great heroes
Lady Hale - in many ways the judge of the moment - has named Archbishop Desmond Tutu as one of her great heroes.
Brenda Hale of course made headlines last September when she was prominent in the Supreme Court’s judgement that called a halt on Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s prorogation of Parliament.
Never mind that the media seemed almost more interested in the fact that she wore a socking great spider brooch than the judgement itself, Lady Hale had finally been noticed by the British public.
It had taken a while. It was after all way back in 2004 that she was appointed the first female Law Lord. Five years later she became the first woman to serve on the Supreme Court and in 2017 was appointed its president.
Now, as she approaches her 75th birthday at the end of this month and faces compulsory retirement, she has given a major interview to the Guardian newspaper and when they asked her to name her heroes, Desmond Tutu came high up the list.
She was, she said, impressed by his ability to “keep a certain spirit alive” which has been very influential in the way things had gone after Nelson Mandela’s release from prison.
She also praised him for that rare ability to understand his own area of weakness, specifically his “massive ego”.
I’m sure Desmond Tutu will acknowledge the truth contained in that view.
A big, big ego and buoyant spirit is an integral part of the package with the Nobel Peace Laureate and fighter for social justice. His strength is that he knows how to use it as a force for good.