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Answers: Law in the Real World

How do everyday activities relate to the law? Find out in this video exploring the legal implications of four everyday activities.
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In this video, we will go through the photographs that you’ve reviewed and discuss three key questions about each. One, what activity or activities are taking place? Two, what sort of laws apply to the activity taking place? And three, what laws, if any, are being broken? As we go through each photograph, think about your answers, how many did you manage to identify correctly? Let’s start with the first image. This is a photograph of a man driving a car. He has his left hand on the steering wheel and the car is moving. In his right hand, he’s looking at his mobile telephone. He’s staring at the screen. He appears to be checking a message. What sorts of laws may apply here?
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Well, the man will be subject to laws relating to the use of a mobile telephone when driving. Has he broken any laws? Yes. In many countries it’s illegal to use your mobile telephone while driving. For example, in the UK, it is illegal to use a mobile telephone when driving. At the very least, this man could receive a £200 fine and get six penalty points on his driving license. Anyone who receives 12 penalty points, may lose their driving license. Our second photograph shows a tin box containing drug paraphernalia, including syringes, a spoon, and a folded up piece of paper. Next to the box, there’s a cigarette butt. What sort of laws may apply here?
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Laws applied to smoking and the use of certain drugs in many countries. These laws make it illegal to use certain drugs. There are also laws that relate to the age at which it is legal to smoke, and where people are allowed to smoke. Have any laws been broken? Well, in this case, it depends on which activities were taking place. Certain drugs are illegal in many countries. For example, in the UK, it’s illegal to sell tobacco products to anyone under the age of 18. It’s also illegal to smoke in workplaces and enclosed public spaces.
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There are also laws that make it illegal for certain drugs to be used for non-medical purposes, and which classified drugs, is either class A, B, or C. Possessing or supplying class A drugs to other people, attracts the most serious punishments. Let’s turn now to our third photograph. This photograph shows a lot of rubbish on the floor. This includes empty and crushed plastic, water bottles, old shoes, an empty glass bottle, pieces of plastic and knitting. What sort of laws may apply here? In many countries, there are laws to prevent littering and environmental damage. Have any laws been broken here? Well, in the UK, for example, it’s a criminal offense to draw, throw down, leave, or deposit litter in a public place.
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Penalties include a maximum fine of £2500. Litter is not limited to old shoes. It may include cigarette butts, chewing gum, and many more small things that people throw away all the time. It’s a good idea to put your rubbish safely in a bin. Our last photograph shows six glasses of alcohol. The glasses are being held up in a toast, and the drink is a cheering. What sort of laws may apply here? Potentially a great many. Many countries have laws relating to the consumption of alcohol. The law sets out who can purchase alcohol, may regulate the drinking of alcohol in private or in public, and aim to prevent underage drinking. Have any laws been broken here?
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Well, it depends how old the people in the photograph are, and where they’re drinking. It’s illegal to sell alcohol to anyone under eighteen anywhere in the UK. If anyone in the photograph is under eighteen, then they will probably be breaking the law. In some countries, there’s a complete ban on alcohol. In Saudi Arabia, for example, it’s illegal to manufacture, import, sell, or drink alcohol. As this video shows, the law plays an important part in almost all activities that we undertake.

This video takes you through the photographs that you were asked to consider and answers three questions about each:

  1. What activity or activities are taking place?
  2. What sort of laws do you think apply to the activity taking place?
  3. What laws, if any, do you think are being broken?

Compare the answers in the video to your answers as you watch.

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Introduction to Studying Law

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