US lawyers snub ABA

The American Bar Association's (ABA) decision to hold its conference in London was applauded initially by many as a progressive move that recognised the links between US and UK legal traditions. The decision to turn it into a Ye Olde Englande theme park farce was not.

Now the ABA is reeling from the news that US lawyers are voting with their feet and staying away in droves. Trying to avoid potentially divisive debate by staging events in theme parks and organising bizarre events for delegates has fooled no one.

The ABA should have learned the lessons of our own Law Society. What remained of The Law Society's dubious credibility was wiped out by its Disneyland Paris conference, which merely confirmed what many lawyers had felt all along, that it was a Mickey Mouse organisation run by clowns.