Dialogues

ABA Dialogue Program

The ABA Dialogue program provides lawyers, judges and teachers with the resources they need to engage students and community members in discussion of fundamental American legal principles and civic traditions.

Law Day 2013 Dialogue

Dialogue Resource Guide

The Dialogue Resource Guide provides judges, teachers, and other civic leaders with the resources they need to engage students and community members in discussions of the 2013 Law Day theme: “Realizing the Dream: Equality for All.” You can download the guide by clicking here.

Print copies of the guide are also available by contacting Chandra Fitzpatrick, outreach manager for the ABA Division for Public education, at Chandra.fitzpatrick@americanbar.org.  

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Additional Dialogue Resources

The following are related resources for each of the three Law Day Dialogues contained in the Dialogue Resource Guide above, including PowerPoints and handouts:  

Part 1: Realizing the Dream Today

Part 2: Equality in the Workplace

Part 3: Unfairness Under the Law

Law Day 2012 Dialogue


The Dialogue on the Courts explores the role of courts in our constitutional democracy. It is an opportunity for Americans to reflect on the importance of courts, not only in our government, but also our everyday lives. Open and accessible courts are the cornerstone if a free society. The courts are where we go to have our rights protected, our injuries redressed, and our disputes resolved. Recent budget cuts at the federal, state, and local levels have seriously compromised our courts’ ability to function effectively and keep the wheels of justice turning.

  • Part I introduces the judiciary as the third branch of American government, and how it relies on, as well as supports, the other two branches—legislative and executive. It also explores challenges facing the judicial branch, and implications for law within a government in which the judiciary cannot function.

    -download Power Point for part 1-

  • Part II continues the discussion with a focus on access to justice issues. The Sixth Amendment to the Constitution guarantees a right to counsel, but what if you do not speak the same language as your lawyer? The judge? This part of the Dialogue features a hypothetical scenario, in which participants debate a proposed “access to translators” law.

    -download Power Point for part 2-

 

 

Past Dialogues

Dialogue on John Adams and His Legacy
Resource Guide for the Dialogue on John Adams and His Legacy. A practical educational resource for lawyers, judges, and other Dialogue leaders for use in the classroom and with youth and community groups. Offers step-by-step directions and discussion questions. Three parts: John Adams and the Boston Massacre Trials; the Scottsboro Boys case from the 1930s; and Clarence Gideon and Gideon v. Wainwright (1963).

Presentations to accompany the Dialogue on John Adams:

Part I: John Adams and the Boston Massacre Trials

Part II: Scottsboro: The Right to Counsel

Part III: "If You Cannot Afford an Attorney …"


 

Dialogue on Law in the 21st Century

The Dialogue on Law in the 21st Century explores three topics: reforming American government in the 21st century, music distribution and copyright, and pirates and the law. Although there are many topics and issues we could consider that relate to this theme, we have chosen these because we think they are challenging, provocative and interesting issues that will generate lively and vigorous discussion.

Part I: Reforming American Government for the 21st Century

Part II: Music Distribution and Copyright in the 21st Century

Part III: Pirates and the Law in the 21st Century

 


Dialogue on Lincoln – A Legacy of Liberty

The Dialogue on Lincoln offers three perspectives for discussion: Lincoln's life, including his career as a lawyer; his decisions as a wartime president; and the portrayal of his image in the media. Download the Dialogue or purchase online.

Dialogue on the Rule of Law

What is the rule of law? How has the rule of law changed over time? How do books and movies represent the rule of law? Explore these questions and more in the Dialogue on the Rule of Law, the sixth installment in the ABA's Dialogue Program. Download the Dialogue or purchase online.

Dialogue on Youth and Justice

The Dialogue on Youth and Justice takes up these questions and more in a three-part discussion format. Download the Dialogue or purchase online.

Dialogue on the American Jury

Trial by jury is a vital part of American democracy. Besides voting, nothing is so active and participatory in nature. The Dialogue on the American Jury is designed to help high school classrooms and community groups explore the many issues related to trial by jury. We encourage lawyers and judges across the country to organize Dialogues in their community. Download the Dialogue ( Part I, Part II, Part III) or purchase online.

Dialogue on Brown v. Board of Education

May 17, 2004, is the fiftieth anniversary of the United States Supreme Court's landmark decision in Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas. The decision brought an end to the legal doctrine of "separate but equal," enshrined by the same court nearly sixty years earlier in Plessy v. Ferguson. Download the Dialogue.

Dialogue on Freedom

This program is designed to provide lawyers and judges with topics, resources and tips to engage high school students in a " Dialogue on Freedom." Dialogue on Freedom

You can purchase a print copy for $0.99 (save with bulk rates) by calling 1-800-285-2221 or visit the ABA Web Store.

Sample Dialogue Video

Sample Dialogue on Youth and Justice featuring students from Washington, DC's Duke Ellington School for the Arts.

Sample Dialogue on the American Jury featuring students from New York City's LaGuardia High School.

 

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