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Some study and exam tips for Year 11 Legal Studies

September 22, 2010 2 comments

My apology for this lateness.  I’m leaving the school soon and there’s always seems to be more to do in terms of transitional tasks.

Regarding the essay section (Port Arthur)

  1. Make sure you have a full understanding of the legal history of gun law reform in Australia, including attempts taken before Port Arthur massacre.
  2. While studying revision, make a quick list of all the relevant media articles.  Jot some quick notes about them.  Think about how they might be used in a legal studies essay.  You should already have media articles in your notes.  There are more on this website.
  3. When you attempt the essay during revision and exam, make sure your plan, your paragraphs and your overall essay all directly address the keywords of the given essay question.  Do not regurgitate prepared answers into the exam.
  4. When you see the essay question for the first time, read it and think.  What is the question really asking you?  Then write your plan accordingly.

Regarding the essay section (Women)

  1. Similar advise to Port Arthur.
  2. You can also get some useful media articles to use on this link to the State Library website (http://blog.sl.nsw.gov.au/hsc_legal_studies/index.cfm/Women).

Regarding other sections

  1. Individual and the Law: make sure you know about individual rights and duties.  (Click here for summary notes on Rights.)
  2. Individuals and Technology: make sure you are able to talk about some technology issues, with reference to media articles and preferably legislation or case laws.
  3. Multiple-choice: go through the revision notes for the Half-Yearly exam.

Somebody else blogged about Port Arthur massacre!

September 20, 2010 Leave a comment

Another blogger out there in the cyberspace has written a blog summary about the Port Arthur massacre.  If you intend to write your essay on the Port Arthur massacre, this could be useful to you.

Categories: Case Study

Population will drive gun crime (ABC News, 18 August 2010)

September 15, 2010 Leave a comment

There seems to be a consensus that Howard’s gun buy-back scheme was tremendously successful in reducing gun related deaths in Australia.  This view has been backed by previous research by law reform agencies as well as academic research from US (see previous post).  However, as this media report suggests, other social factors will have a negative impact on the effectiveness of our gun-control legal mechanisms.

Population will drive gun crime (ABC News, 18 August 2010)

The Victorian Police Chief Commissioner Simon Overland says he expects a rise in gun crime and shootings as Melbourne’s population continues to increase.

Mr Overland says he believes the state’s gun control measures are adequate.  But he says a swelling population is largely to blame for events such as those seen in recent days.

“Obviously we don’t want these things to occur, but we live in a very big city nowadays,” he said.

“Unfortunately as population increases, we know that these sorts of issues will increase, as we have bigger and bigger populations living here in Melbourne.”

So, despite our best effort, increase in gun related deaths, particularly gun crimes, will probably increase due to pressure from population growth in urban areas.

Categories: Case Study, Criminal Justice Tags:

‘Egg rage sparked husband’s deadly rampage, says relative’ (Sydney Morning Herald, 12 September 2010)

September 12, 2010 Leave a comment

Normally I would not comment on articles like this, but this tragic article dovetails really well with my earlier post about the effectiveness of Howard’s gun law reform back in 1997.

‘Egg rage sparked husband’s deadly rampage, says relative’ (Sydney Morning Herald, 12 September 2010)

A man enraged over how his wife cooked his eggs in rural Kentucky shot five people dead with a shotgun before killing himself, a relative of two of the victims said.

Trooper Jody Sims of the Kentucky State Police said 47-year-old Stanley Neace killed five people in two mobile homes around 11:30am on Saturday morning, then went to his home and turned the gun on himself.

Categories: Case Study Tags:

‘Howard’s gun buyback slashed firearm suicides’ (ABC News, 30 August 2010)

September 12, 2010 Leave a comment

This very recent article goes to show, in very terms, that the gun buyback scheme by the Howard government has worked, and is one of the positive legacies of the Howard government.  Note that is a long term study over 10 years, so the researcher in this article is really able to measure the effectiveness of the gun buy back scheme in reducing gun related deaths.

‘Howard’s gun buyback slashed firearm suicides’ (ABC News, 30 August 2010)

Australian researchers have found there has been an almost 80 per cent drop in firearm suicides since former prime minister John Howard’s gun buyback was introduced in 1997.

The figures equate to about 200 lives each year.

The 1997 gun buyback saw 650,000 semi-automatic rifles and shotguns destroyed, and is estimated to have halved the number of gun-owning households.

The new study, published in the American Law and Economics Review, found the largest falls in firearm deaths occurred in states where more firearms were handed in.

Analysing the data state by state, study authors Christine Neill and Andrew Leigh says it appears there has been a significant reduction in the number of firearm homicides but the data is less precise.

Ms Neill says the number of lives saved each year is probably much more than estimated.

“The figure is an extremely conservative figure. It’s based off an even smaller fall than the 80 per cent,” she said.

Dr Michael Dudley from Suicide Prevention Australia has welcomed the research and says the figures make sense.

“Reducing access to methods is very important and reducing access [to guns] can also reduce suicide,” he said.

Categories: Case Study Tags: ,

Alright, some revision updates are coming…

September 12, 2010 Leave a comment

OK Year 11 students, this is what’s going to happen.

  • Late evening, Sunday 12 September: Answers to the first set of revision task.
  • Late evening, Tuesday 14 September: Answers to the first set of revision task from Excel, as well as summary notes on Women and the Law.
  • Late evening, Thursday 16 September: Answers to the second set of revision task from Excel.
  • Late evening, Sunday 19 September: Sample essay response on Port Arthur massacre.

To borrow the words of Ms Sullivan, study hard or else I will kungfu in the butt.

‘Born Or Bred? Martin Bryant: The Making Of A Mass Murderer’ (Fairfax media, 26 April 2009)

November 11, 2009 Leave a comment

criminal justiceThis clip, which was posted on Fairfax media (Sydney Morning Herald) as well as YouTube contains interviews with Fairfax investigative journalists Robert Wainwright and Paola Totaro.

A written media report also accompanied the interview.  (See ‘Mass murderer wanted someone to stop him‘ (Sydney Morning Herald, 26 April 2009)).

What Wainwright and Totaro found about Martin Bryant was quite interesting and is particularly relevant to Legal Studies students seeking to understand causes of crime.

First of all, there is strong evidence that Martin Bryant, from a young age, had genetic dispositions that would led to him becoming a mass murderer in Port Arthur.

Yet that alone did not make a mass murderer.  What Martin Bryant also had was a very unloving and dysfunctional upbringing that helped to ‘nurture’ those violent tendencies.  Only his father understood what to do with him, but the premature death of Martin’s father would lead to a downward spiral for him.

So this is the point of this blog entry.  Genetics can be a possible cause of crime, but it manifests itself only with other environmental factors.