Ten years from now, people will look back at 2014 and say it marked the start of the new world of law, a renaissance where the respect and reputation of lawyers and law schools began to rise by measurable benchmarks (polls will show lawyers’ and law school popularity rising–not as fast as Pope Francis, but better than Congress). With apologies to Churchill, after several dark years, 2014 will not be the end, nor the beginning of the end, but rather the end of the beginning. It will take time, but 2014 will eventually be seen as the start of the “up” market for law.
As one proud to be riding this tidal wave with the golden surfboard of a Juris Doctor, allow me to say, "COWABUNGA!" Surfs up, dudes, and the time to hit the water is when the timid are still cowering their moldering mothers' basements.
As Dean Da Vinci notes, the respect for lawyers and law schools has reached its abyssmal basin, and it will now rise, so now seems to be a good time as any to fill out your application and head to the local law school.
Imagine yourself in Italy long ago. A young man comes to ask your help with a sculpture. You haughtily laugh and turn him down. "Sculpture!" you say. "My boy, there is already a massive oversupply of sculptors and not enough rock and orders for sculptures to go around. Besides, have you seen the cost of getting an apprenticeship in sculpting? The tuition by those greedy teachers? Do you know the remote odds of landing BigSculpture? Do you know that everyone thinks they're going to be in the top 10% of sculptors? There are sculptors waiting tables right now!"
Blah blah blah. You just discouraged Donatello. Don't be a dick to Donatello. Encourage people to get on board with renaissances when they start, not jump off the wagon when you think it's a "dying" career.