The Shoat Statements

Random musings by the multiple voices inside my head.

Lawyers are supposed to be smart, right? On the ball? Looking for opportunities? Well, have I got news for you. As a LLB student, I can't say I have kind words for my fellow students. Why? Well, let me count the ways...


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There was the front-page news of DP James, which even managed to be one of the most emailed stories on BBC, but did the future lawyers of Sri Lanka know about it? If you answered no, you answered correct. apart from myself and another student, no one else in the 25+ class had heard about it. Makes you seriously wonder what kind of law students don't even look cursorily at a newspaper - how do you miss front page news that was on radio, TV, print & the internet?

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And then we had a case on rape. A question actually, and it concerned three men. As soon as the professor walked out, they were all like 'he hasn't picked up on the printing mistake because rape can only happen to a woman'. I was like WTF??!! Rape is unconsensual sex - where is it a gender issue? I asked them what do you think happens to men in prison - they are with other men and they are sexually assaulted. Seriously. Don't they at least watch some TV? Movies? Anyhing?

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Now this is a course conducted exclusively in English, and at the point of enrolling you are told that you need a high standard of English. So imagine my surprise when they didn't know that 'tribune/tribunal' was actually vastly different to 'tribute'. How did they possibly understand the text? Or how about when they thought 'cannibal' and 'cardinal' was the same thing?

Also, only two students actually knew that alcohol was a depressant, as opposed to being stimulants...common sense, anyone?

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Or how about this elementary story - we have to pay our exam fees and give the application to the British Council. The institute gave us the forms and instructions around the 10th or 15th of December, including a special leaf from the British Council stating:
"British Council offices are open from 9.30 a.m. to 6.00 p.m. Tues - Sat. Forms are accepted from the 18th of Dec - 20th Jan"

I asked them around the 16th of January if they had already submitted their exam forms already, and they all look at me blankly, and say we can't hand in the forms till Friday. They all actually misread the instructions as 18 - 20th Jan. How dumb could you possibly get? Isn't reading instructions like a really, really basic step? Not all of them got this wrong, but far too many for comfort.

On the topic of missing instructions, there are those students who turn up for cancelled classes because they didn't listen when the announcement was made in class. Or those who turn up for the wrong subject...

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Are there more stories? Yes - I could write a novella on it. But these are the most recent examples I could think of. Why am I ranting about it - because firstly, as law students, some degree of common sense, general knowledge and language skills are required, over and above that of the average Saman.

The more important reason is of course money. Apart from myself, who's struggling to pay the fees, everyone else is blowing up their parents money. This is the whole problem in this country - people with too much money, no clue how to spend it, and even less insight on how to respect it. Why are these kids, who obviously have little interest in the course, and whose brains obviously haven't expanded enough to grasp most of it, even here? They should be playing video games at home. Its always the wrong ones with the money.

2 comments:

I knew they were bad. I did'nt know they were THIS bad.

With raw material like this no wonder the former Secretary of the Bar Association is on trial for forgery of title deeds

i did this exam about 2 years ago. the general pass rate is 50%. don't be surprised if more than half your class don't make it to the second year and even less to the third. you get this crowd every year and they get weeded out at the exam. i know people who started with me and are still repeating the 1st year. and not all of them go on to be lawyers. some of them just want a degree.

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