We’ve just wrapped up the Law Review Symposium on Gideon at 50 here at W&L School of Law. Each of the speakers and panels were very informative and thought provoking. Moving beyond an idealistic nostalgia for Gideon, the panelists took on the meaning and value of Gideon today and the future of the right to counsel.
Does access to justice demand an expansion of Gideon or funding for indigent defense? Or do we need to be smart on Gideon, doing triage to figure out which cases really warrant an attorney versus some other type of non-attorney advocate. In a world of plea-bargaining, hyper-incarceration, and collateral consequences for criminal convictions, what is the proper way to deploy and support a right to indigent defense counsel? These questions and more were explored during the past two days and will be discussed in greater detail in works to be published in the Washington & Lee Law Review this spring in its Symposium Issue. Video of the symposium will be available at a later date.
Congratulations and appreciation are due to the organizers of the symposium, Professor J.D. King and Law Review Symposium Editor Carney Simpson, as well as Editor-in-Chief Alex Sugzda.