As a Journalism student I happened to come across different modules and areas of expertise that I did not think about before. One of these areas is law. I know that most of the people will think that it is useless to know the law and how this applies to normal people, but if you do a tiny bit of reading you will realise the importance of this subject.

Societies work if people living there respect the law. But have you ever thought about what the law really is? I mean, you hear about laws pretty much everywhere and usually people have strong opinions about them (usually against them), but I don’t think that they fully comprehend why a certain law is good or bad for them. For instance, what happens in societies is that people have a general understanding about laws and it’s mostly to do with traffic. If you park illegally you know you will get a fine, if you don’t follow the rules in traffic same thing happens. People tend to know these laws if they have a driving license. But we should have a think about other laws that maybe at a first glance seem that there is no way that you will have to come across them. Take for example the matter of privacy. Mostly in America this is an issue that is known by everyone, whereas here in the UK not many people know this. People have the right to privacy (victims of sexual assault and children too) and media should make sure that this right is not violated. People have the right to a fair trial, they have the right not to become public people no matter what their occupation is and also freedom of expression (people have the right to say whatever pleases them, with the condition that the accusations made don’t harm others).

It is imperative to know the law in the case that others charge you with something. Sure, you rely on lawyers to know specific information, but one has to have a general understanding and knowledge about laws, since this is the only way you know your rights. You have to be able to understand contracts for work and even for banks, to identify legal documents in general. Lastly, you have to know the law, so you don’t break it.

All in all, make sure you look up information about different laws and have a think about how important it is to be informed in these days. You won’t regret it; there is nothing to lose if you know more about the society you live in.