An op-ed published Sunday in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch warns that the public may soon ignore Supreme Court rulings and view the justices as “little more than black-robed political hacks.”

The politicization of the court is no longer something judges can hide, the newspaper notes.

“The last three on the bench misled members of Congress by indicating that they considered Roe v. Wade as an established law, not to be overturned. The wife of Judge Clarence Thomas is an outspoken supporter of former President Donald Trump and his efforts to overthrow democracy,” the editorial said.

The respect and consideration that Americans should have for Supreme Court decisions in a stable society must be earned by judges, the editorial said. Otherwise, decisions are vulnerable.

“The Supreme Court has no police force or military command to enforce its decisions. So far, the deference shown by the states has been entirely out of respect for the court’s place among the three branches of government. If states simply choose to ignore the court in the wake of a Roe reversal, the judges will have only themselves to blame for the erosion of their stature in the minds of Americans,” concludes the editorial.