Friday, February 25, 2011

Attitudes Toward Litigation

I have used the following series of videos and internet sources to explore attitudes toward litigation.  I start with a video called "Fairplay" from the Georgia Civil Justice Foundation about the benefits of the civil justice system.  Below is an embedded Youtube copy of the video.  If you have any trouble with it, the original is available at the website link above.

In contrast, Manpower's "Up Close and Personnel" tour gives us a look at different view.  I only use the first 1:30 of this video.  After that it gets off track.


The next resource comes from no less an important source than Abraham Lincoln. Below is a copy of a speech Lincoln delivered to fellow lawyers around 1850 (Courtesy of the "American Memory" digital collection at the Library of Congress). In it, Lincoln states "Discourage litigation-- Persuade your neighbors to compromise whenever you can-- Point out to them how the nominal winner is often a real loser, in fees, expenses, and waste of time-- As a peace-maker, the lawyer has a superior opertunity of being a good man-- There will still be business enough--" You can show students that Lincoln originally wrote, "Never encourage litigation," but, on reconsideration, replaced this advice with a stronger admonition.

Image 1 of 3, Series 1. General Correspondence. 1833-1916.

 Lincoln's advice is echoed today in a modern medium, below, from Attorney Jay Zellmer.

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