I’ve written often here about the fault lines in the ADR profession – the deep rifts dividing facilitative and evaluative mediators, the line in the sand between attorneys who mediate and professional mediators who are not lawyers. These dividing lines damage our collegiality and pose harm to our credibility as dispute resolution professionals; if we are unable to face and address our own differences, how can we be relied upon to assist others?
Other professions are of course no strangers to such schisms. In fact intractable conflict smolders now between lawyers, rooted not in doctrinal or political differences but in generational ones. Adrian Dayton, a lawyer who publishes an eponymous blog, discusses its impact in “Candid exchange highlights a disconnect” in The Buffalo Law Journal.
After describing the rancorous arguing that has ensued between members of different generations of lawyers, Dayton, a Gen Y lawyer, observes:
What does that tell us? That there is a real conflict – and lack of understanding – on both sides. The biggest message I took away from it was that we’d better figure each other out – we’re going to be together for a while.
Dayton has thus signaled his willingness to bridge the generation gap. So what about his counterparts on the other side? No word yet. But if they need some assistance, the blogosphere’s full of mediators.