In which I advocate for the creation of a Law ____________, and it will be awesome.
August 29, 2013 § 4 Comments
Thanks to a post by my buddy Greenfield, I am now nothing more than a few minutes closer to death, via a video by one of the newest ABA “legal rebels.”
So, basically, what we’ve been needing is a “Law Laboratory” in order to deliver quality and affordable legal care to the masses?
I’m not sure about its actual delivery of legal services, but I’ve discerned from the video that the “Law Laboratory” does the following:
1. Holds events in various locations.
2. Has a spiffy website.
3. Talks about stuff with people.
4. Does not wear lab coats.
This sounds like a fantastic way to effectuate a paradigm shift in the legal profession, whatever that means. Granted, I only watched the video once. I can’t do it again, I won’t do it again, and you can’t make me.
Frankly, I think this young lady has it wrong. Laboratories, from my memories of them, are boring, overly sterile and filled with funky odors. That’s not an environment in which to change a profession. Let’s look at a few better options.
Law Amusement Park
Who doesn’t like an amusement park? Activities abound that pique the interests of almost any segment of the population. You can be turned and twisted. You can be turned upside down and caused to puke the undercooked turkey leg you consumed 20 minutes ago. Opportunities abound to scream “Wheeeeee!”, even at inappropriate times. Especially at inappropriate times.
At the end of the day, you are exhausted, grimy, and need to take a dump. Why, that’s just like the practice of law.
Every restaurant wants to be a bistro. Why? They want to appeal to uppity clientele with deep pockets and a hankering for rich, creamy hollandaise sauce poured over everything. If you know what I mean.
Nowadays, many restaurants want to bring a bistro feel to the masses, just like some of of these legal rebels. What they fail to realize is that a Whopper is a Whopper, whether you call the joint Burger King or Burger Bistro. Changing the decor and name does not change the food.
Many in the practice of law attempt this same business model.
Like a Law Amusement Park, but with freaks. Lotsa freaks. Just like the law! Have you ever attended municipal court in a large metro area? If you have, you know what I’m talking about. Remember what I said about ending an amusement park day feeling exhausted and grimy? In municipal court, you feel that way by 9AM.
Law Strip Club
Everyone enters expecting to leave a winner. In the end, the vast majority leave feeling nothing but hot and bothered. Then there’s coming up with an excuse for being covered in glitter makeup, but that’s another blog post entirely.
Walmart brought cheap stuff at a cheap price to the masses, all while employing cheap labor. Isn’t that what most of these “bringing affordable legal services to the masses” are seeking to do? They just think they’re above genuflecting to a portrait of Sam Walton every morning prior to leaving for work.
Law Outlet Mall
Those jeans seem like a great deal. That is, until that faulty seam in the back splits and you show your ass to the entire world. But, hey, it was a great deal, and the savings were incredible!
I hear it from potential clients again and again, as they come to similar revelations about their prior legal representation.
Now we’re getting somewhere. Consider the similarities to a courthouse:
–Some people are getting screwed.
–Other people are doing the screwing.
–Some people end their visit feeling satisfied.
–Others end their visit in pain.
–Some leave with diseases. Most are incurable.
–Some people never leave, having been buried in the basement and forgotten.
–Most people working there are selling services. And we all know that services is services.
–Those who are not selling services work in a losing effort to sanitize walls and floors.
Because that’s the law, and it sure as hell ain’t no laboratory. That’s where change, if it is to be made, happens–not in some sterile laboratory, but in the real world, with real lawyers, doing real stuff for real clients. Ugly, unseemly, and undignified, though it often is.