This isn’t a substantive post at the moment. It will become so when I’ve done some more work. For the moment, it’s a request for information and ideas. (I will update this with something like what I present)
As some of you may know and I mention in my “about” page, I volunteer with older people and the elderly in my community. I go to activities which usually have a theme (weddings, holidays, etc) with a talk and/ or a discussion and some sort of quiz or other written activity attached. As a regular volunteer, the members are quite interested in my life, hoped for me as I waited to hear if I got into the law degree, and have celebrated how it’s been going ever since. It’s a lot like having many surrogate grandparents in many ways.
I’ve volunteered to give a presentation at one activity (possibly two) about my law degree to date, which perhaps might come with a multiple choice quiz about the law (which won’t entirely be serious, but might be educational). I’ve laid down three conditions to the talk: I will try to keep ugly politics out of it, I will not give legal advice, and I will not reveal any confidential information. (I’ve told some of the group about the pro bono work I’ve done to date. I’ve been very careful to say very little about details, e.g. I’ve said things like “I’m working on a housing law* issue for a client, I liked the client and I think they have a strong case” (* it was not housing law) and no more.)
So my talk will focus on some basics of the law in this jurisdiction (things like “what is common law”), and I’ll give a brief explanation of the areas I studied this year: criminal law, constitutional/ administrative law, contract law, and equity and trusts. I’ll also have a question and answer section, with the proviso that some questions may require research and I might have to come back to people.
So I ask anyone who reads this post: if you are not a lawyer or law student, what would you like to know about these areas? If you are, what would you talk about? For either, what kind of questions would you want in a fun quiz about the law? (There’s a funny footnote in J.H. Baker’s An Introduction to English Legal History which recalls a Scottish defendant trying to wage battle against the lord advocate in 1985, arguing that although waging battle had been abolished in 1819, this only applied to England. That’s definitely on the list)
So, as always, please do comment (in this case, this is the entire point of the post). I have thoughts on the benefits and downsides of explaining the law as a law student, which I will return to in another post (along with the rest of my to-do list on that front). If you would like, please also share this post. I don’t ask because I want to increase the number of people who read my blog (I do, but that’s not the point here). I ask because I want to do the best job I can for the wonderful group of people who I’m privileged to volunteer for.