[William M.] Kunstler believed that the primary role of a progressive lawyer was to protect the rights of those in society who were trying to cause a paradigm shift in thinking. That is, he did not see the lawyer as the primary engine for social change; rather, it was the social activist, the person who sought to educate, persuade, and change fundamental thinking about particular issues. Such activists would invariably be vulnerable to attack by the political and legal system that was not amenable to the change, and it was the job of the attorney to use every tool available to her to protect that activist. Kunstler’s advice fit in with our general view that the first task of the animal-rights movement was to educate society about why such a movement was necessary in the first place and to shift the paradigm away from the commodity status of nonhumans.
This is an excellent take on the role of the lawyer in social change, specifically in the context of animal rights but is aplicable more broadly. From “Animals as Persons” by Gary Francione (p. 122)