After another turbulent week in the courts and in parliament the Socratic Club focussed on the role of the law in our everyday lives and the need for lawyers. We debated whether people (even criminals) should have the right to representation via legal aid, with a clear majority in favour, but one against questioning the need for a court case at all in many instances, when perhaps a stern warning from the police might save costs. We also debated the importance of language and whether parliament should see a check on the language used. This divided the group with many concerned about inappropriate terms and potential racist abuse, whilst others saying that such limitations would impact on free speech and language matters not so much in the words themselves, but the context in which they are used. For the second-half of the session we were joined by two lawyers, one commercial and one criminal. We looked at the differences in law, the need for juries, judges and representation. Various case-studies were mentioned, including issues of self-defence and the re-payment of funds when one has incorrectly received funds via a bank or other institution. An extensive Q&A took-place with many excellent questions asked. Several of the group expressed an interest in becoming lawyers when older. As ever it was great to work with such an enthusiastic set of students, with such interesting and well-articulated views.
Q&A with Sophia Dzwig and Edmund Gross on what it is like to be a young lawyer (commercial and criminal law) and how to argue/debate (use advocacy) in court.