This Article will consider the current crisis in a broad historical context. This larger narrative can provide a helpful perspective in the current debate. It offers a glimpse into how we came to the current system and allows us to question our assumptions regarding the way the system currently works. Historical context is an important (and under-discussed) aspect of this crisis. As the leaders of the bench and bar come together to evaluate changes to the current system, the discussion should begin with understanding how the system evolved to where it is now and with appreciating the fact that the current situation may call for solutions very different from those that worked in the past. This Article is structured around three broad themes of access to the legal system: (1) access to the courthouse; (2) access to lawyers; and (3) substantive and procedural access to justice. While the purpose of this Article is to encourage leaders in the judiciary to view the current crisis differently-and not necessarily to propose solutions-this Article includes some suggestions for consideration.
47 New England L. Rev. 571 (2013).