ADULTINGPosted by Cristina Jul 04, 2017 04:47PM
So, as it's somewhat transparent I want to be a lawyer.
A criminal barrister I believe but I don't have my heart set on it, it's what I feel and criminal law seems certainly like an interesting and tangent path to take as well as advocacy is not something I feel I want to desist of.
There are however, issues.
I hear barristers and solicitors saying why they didn't go into criminal practice and it's mostly because they fell into other areas or didn't want to have people's freedoms in their hands. Every now and again they will tell you there is no money in criminal so their choice was one of a more commercially applicable nature.
These are not my issues.
I was recently called to be a witness in a trial;
This was involving someone I knew the family of. This was not an issue. As an court interpreter the setting isn't exactly new nor are the ways in which questions are put to witnesses by barristers; it was more intimidating of course as I was there in my own capacity and not just to parrot what some other witness was saying but it went really well.
The defendant was found guilty. This became an issue.
(I won't address my personal opinions of the case being referred, this is not the subject of my issue, even though I didn't necessarily agree with the verdict, the defence lawyers approach or the jury's overall performance)
My issue was of a less personal matter and one which saw me defend the law, the courts, the lawyers and judges and the overall process in which the law acts.
I played the devil's advocate.
With this I seem to have an issue.
Defendant, convicted and sentenced. The sentence was really harsh on the family and on my view not very fair; it seemed to scream out "I'll make an example out of you" but on the law... I am finding there were less than perfect happenings but not mistakes as it were.
And this brings about more issues.
One side of me wants to use this quite real experience to practice how would I scrutinise this and look st it from a lawyer going for an appeal; This side of me is looking at so many technicalities and ways in which there could've been trip ups and not well applied procedures... this side of me I am sure is set to be a great advocate and would make a lot of money defending anyone who could pay for the effort of deconstructing every minute of every hearing from plea to sentencing...
This is one of the issues.
The other side of me wants to just look at the overall development and be sure there were no gross mistakes and move on from the search and separate the fact that the people who were the accused were complete ass***** (swapped blanking hahaha) and acted in bad faith when telling their version of events from the one who understands that the jury had the information that was presented to them and no other and came to a conclusion allowed to them.
The main issue though is still the one where I am forced to take a side. I owe some loyalty to this defendant, or their family more precisely, and when it comes to that I am a straight person. My loyalties don't disappear with adversity, if anything, they manifest themselves in a more obvious manner.
(As I mentioned, my personal opinion on the case is not of relevance here.)
I don't owe loyalties to other though. I owe loyalty to myself and my own feelings and beliefs and the moment I feel I owe loyalty to the Law. There is so much cynicism one can possess when wanting to be a Lawyer, if one wants to concurrently be a decent human being.
I understand the Law involved, the process involved and the need for this process and it is imperfect but it is what it is and absolutely defensible and justifiable; It is a process which works in its majority and exists to enable us to live in the society we do.
I DO NOT WANT TO HAVE TO CHOOSE.
I DO NOT WANT TO TAKE SIDE.
In reading law I took the stance from very early that my own opinion cannot be gold and I have to hear and understand other and varied points of view. I have to analyse the hows and whys if I am to succeed in understanding the law and of course in applying it.
I now have hurt and disappointed people that have been let down, as far as they can see it and feel it, by this law I have grown to love more and more even if, as opposite to a teen crush but more like a long term relationship is filled with holes and flaws and threatens to disappoint at every turn but it keeps giving and giving enough and more to keep your love alive.
Divisions suck when you have good sense and the ability to understand them even if they are diametrically opposed. (and yes, "suck" is the best literary term I can find to describe the feeling, not a lack of vocabulary).
WORK HARD Hardly PlayPosted by Cristina Jun 20, 2017 04:07PM
So... I chose a sandwich course in straight law.
No, this is not some dirty euphemism I learned with someone barely older than my son it means that in the middle of my degree there is a 1 year placement with a law firm - for those of us lucky, or maybe not, to get one and the straight part means it's a law degree, not law with criminology, European law or law with Simpsons studies.
I am one of the lucky ones to have gotten a placements.
I love the company I got my placement with, its not only a respected (and even feared by competitors) company but it is a down to earth one with people in it, real people.
The sort of part comes from two other issues. Firstly, a degree is taking me a year longer (why the hell would I do that?!) and secondly, I have referred exams I didn't sit in the first place and am now having to work full time with over 2hrs commuting everyday and prepare for the upcoming exams, smack bang in the middle of my holiday time (seems there were 3 complaints after all).
Oh well, "complaining on a full stomach" as mum would say - it just means you're dissing the food only after you've stuffed your face with it, as in if you did it before you might've not gotten any...
Placement is going well, I thought the weekends were going to be longer since there seems there was not much studying to do for the first few weeks, I could clock off on Friday and only clock in on Monday morning, but the freaking things seems to be smaller than an evening... who was the smart ass that invented 2 day weekends? I'd like a word please.
Evenings are not as long as expected either, even when it's daylight for nearly 20hours of the day!
Having to cook and clean and catch up with the children and their lives and the other half and his life... friends get nearly no time and the rest of the family seem to get even less. No extended family around, no mum to help with the ironing, other half allergic to the ironing board and the hoover and no money to pay a butler and a cook mean longer days after clocking out than whilst actually getting paid.
But I don't complain; I only offer observations. At some point it should be the case that I have actually completed my degree and work will surely increase, post grad and post post grad duties will certainly make it increase again so I feel it's good prep.
It's good prep to get used to not having time for the family, friends, gym, Netfix, drinking...
I feel not having time to do these things makes us want to do them more and enjoy them more hence, it makes us work harder to anable us, if we are lucky, to be in that place where we can choose how much we work and then do all of those things and more.
It seems pretty moronic to me, but it sounds like a plan and a much better one than the alternative.
Study and work hard to work, work to enjoy or don't work hard and only work... FOREVER!!!
Also, I need caffeine so this post isn't making much sense now.
Work hard everyone, one day, you'll hardly work!
ADULTINGPosted by Cristina Jun 19, 2017 11:55AM
There are time which try us as people, personally and on a larger scale as PEOPLE; people of Earth, people of a certain country or a certain city, as women and as men...
Lately, the world (and I say this with the complete understanding of the fallacy in using the expression) has thrown some hefty stuff at US, all of the above categories and more. I thought the world had thrown some stuff at my own life but apart from all out War in western countries and the world being devoured as in a Hollywood apocalyptic feature, the events of the last 10 years have rapidly multiplied exponentially and seem to be happening at a much more alarming rate.
I would like to assure everyone that I am human and have feelings. I say this because I am planning on being quite non sentimental about a very, very sad event.
I am not cruel or cold in any way, but there are always different facets one can look at in any event and the truth is that some of those are not as popular as others. In today's current political climate it is seemingly OK to be appalled and cry "INJUSTICE" at everything but not so much to be the one who points out the difficulties of making the unjust just in such a complex society as that which we have created for ourselves.
Adding to the, somewhat long-winded, justification above is the fact that I am a bit of a control freak and a natural problem solver. I don't tend to panic and cry at problems and tragedies but rather to look at the instant needs and solutions to mitigate those problems and tragedies - I often to panic and cry just not exclusively, it tends to be accompanied by a couple of questions and a bunch of possible answers and solutions.
Grenfell Tower, 14th June 2017. Tragedy. Problems and questions that come with it within the first 24hours?
NOT how it started. NOT who started it. NOT where it started.
NOT who is to blame. NOT what is to blame. NOT how can we protest.
(in no particular order, only a marginally logical one)
1. Are people now safe? As in, is there anyone else in danger inside or around the building?
2. Are people being treated for their injuries? Are all children accompanied with an adult, preferably one they know?
3. Are people fed and clothed and their dignities and more immediate needs being met? As in, are there any babies being breastfed, with allergies that could cause immediate health hazards to themselves, people without asthma inhalers or insulin?
4. Who is who? What role does the Police play and the fireman, and the councils, and the pcso's and the charities? As in, who do you ask for what?
5. Who is where? As in, have people been screened for injuries and tallies taken of their details and contact numbers and where have they been taken? Do people have mobile phones on them on know their loved ones contact numbers by heart? If they don't who and how can they get in touch with? Do they have family they can stay with instantly or do they need emergency accommodation? Is this emergency accommodation available and which one are they going into?
6. Who survived? As in, not who died!!! In a case like this identification (after all the issues with recovery) of the deceased should be second to identification of the living; If this runs as smoothly as it can, a simple process of elimination should greatly help with managing expectations and suffering of those with loved ones missing. Whatever it's called TASK-FORCE:
Where was the plan, the emergency plan for this? It is unbelievable and unacceptable that in 2017 (yes, the fire happened in those circumstance but like I said this is not the focus in this post) with the astonishing amount of technology and resources available to organise, spy and bomb other nations there isn't a simple group of people trained in good sense organisational skills such as those required to ease the suffering and provide the necessary help to those affected.
This was NOT an incident on a massive scale (in pragmatic and problem solving terms), it was not half the country torn by fire and floods, a tornado in central London, an alien invasion... it was a contained incident in a cash rich, resource rich and community rich accessible by all modernities
in existence - cars, and helicopters can get there, people can walk there, there is electricity, plumbing, gas, internet, tv and tv crews...
I am criticising the response yes. Not the responders. Not the brave souls who make low wages and everyday put their lives on the line for others and keep at it and those who don't give up even when they haven't slept in a couple of days... not even the politicians exactly! I am criticising what the Americans call the pencil pushers, what I call the Brett's
(private joke, sorry) of our time, those who only tick the box and poorly as it is, to get paid at the end of the month and maybe get some social status with their professional (I do use the term loosely) position.
How has no one, NO ONE, in any department come up with an idea to have proper teams? Has it been pitched to the right people if they did? Have people denied if it has?
The military have highly coordinated response capability for their own scenarios, and we saw a fine example of this in the London Bridge/Borough Market events only a few weeks ago... so we do know it is possible, this is no me fantasising. Is it?
It's well and good to criticise and find flaws in other people's actions but not as much to come up with the ideas.
Well, here's one.
PCSO's are the heart of the link between community and all other front line services. If they are not, they should be. No one knows which services are available and do what like they do nor who in their community does what.
So, let's train, recruit if necessary, a handful of them per borough, to be the one stop people for situations of this matter. They can be master coordinators, the ones who link the community centres to the police and other front-line operatives. Let's give them a kick ass training and make them into Community Super Soldiers and give them capes and cool names and super powers... wait... I'm getting a little carried away here but, am I really?
Is it so unfeasible to imagine a world where there are apps that can sign in survivors in 3 seconds and tell their family which hospital they are at, where aid is electronically monitored and volunteers can be asked to please get some crucial necessity from community centre to another (even if by Deliveroo -
other companies are available - see if I care the how), where foldable beds are available in the first 24hrs for those which have been displaced can have a soft place to lay their heads even if for a couple of hours, where the focus is on helping the affected not on photo ops or PM bashing (no comment on the deservedness of it)