Archive for April 5th, 2010

Jury Duty

Jury duty begins for me today.  I would like to say I’m excited about exercising my civic duty, about playing a small but vital part in our justice system.

I would really like to say it.


Yeah, I ‘m ashamed to say I am less than thrilled at the prospect.  I always flash back to my first time serving many years ago.  Even though I was really too young and inexperienced to sit in judgement of anyone, it was still painfully obvious how a verdict was often the result of people’s personal preferences and biases as much as it was a result of the evidence.  When seen up close, it seemed too open to manipulation from those with strong personalities and prejudices which made it a less than balanced set of scales for those on trial.  Especially, say for a person of color or someone with a foreign accent.

I would like to say I believe every person chosen will keep an open mind free from personal prejudice and thinking based on stereotypical imagery, that they will base their decisions solely on the merit of the evidence placed before them.  I would like to believe that rational thought would far outweigh the pettiness of the biased mind.

I really would.

But I’ll see today.  Maybe I will be surprised and filled with pride at the efficiency and true justice of our jury system.

Maybe.  The jury’s out on that one.

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