Lahny R. Silva


I tell my law students that we are gladiators. We slay injustices while protecting liberty. We battle other gladiators, incapacitate violent criminals, and watch over those without a voice. When the people ring the bell signaling the need to restructure the functions of institutions and practices, lawyers enter the arena ready for combat. In America, the inimitable skills of counsel are constitutionally recognized and celebrated. The Framers considered the right to counsel so critical to the republic that it is enshrined in the text of the Sixth Amendment. Whether majorities of the Supreme Court have held this right in such high esteem is debatable. The Court’s jurisprudence has erratically expanded and restricted the right to counsel, leaving its scope far from certain

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