Ralph Nader’s new American Museum of Tort Law is not a new Disneyland, but it does aim to entertain and educate families across the country. Located in Winsted, Connecticut, it is the first law museum in the United States and is meant to “counter the narrative of the so-called ‘tort-reformers.'”
The museum is decorated with visual images and illustrations that document past cases and lawsuits that have led to justice for American people. Corporate accountability, product liability, and other consumer horrors – including the “Toys That Kill” display – are all subjects to learn about at the AMTL.
The displays and cartoons on the walls radiate a playful feeling, but they reflect on serious issues. While “tort-reformers” work to demonize trial lawyers, limit compensation for victims, and protect negligent entities, the ultimate goal of the new museum is to show how tort law has made the world a better place by protecting the public.
A goal of Nader’s is to expand the museum an additional 10,000 square feet. Included in Phase 2 will be a full-size courtroom to reenact famous tort cases, meant to educate students and peak children’s interest in jury service. The right to a trial by jury is one of the most important privileges of living in America: “The civil justice system is the most open, refereed public decision-making forum in the world. Everyone else works behind closed doors. A court of law is open to the press. There’s a verbatim transcript, cross-examination, and a trial by jury. There’s even an appeal, in front of the media,” Nader reminds us.
Have you visited the American Museum of Tort Law in Winsted? Please share your experience with us in a comment below!