POST OF THE DAY
The BMW Method
On Shirking Jury Duty

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By freethinkerkeywe
August 31, 2005

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Go to any town and watch the jury selection process. NO ONE who works wants to serve on a jury despite your suggestion to the opposite...


This was the last post I could take about jurists lacking sophistication. So, not just to you, but to all the people who condone "making excuses" to get off jury duty, I've got something to get off my chest:

There is simply no honor in lying to get off jury duty. People who lie to get out of jury duty and who complain about the low quality of jurists in trials are like blabbermouth shout radio/TV Chickenhawks who lied about cysts on their asses or who had dad pull strings to keep them out of Vietnam.

Loud-mouthed hypocrites are the lowest form of critics.

People who lie to get off jury duty, but who then turn around and make fun of jurists not being "peer" material are anti-American. You have become part of the problem by not serving honorably. Feeling superior to those without your "pull" lends to your thinking that you are smarter than the jurists.

When you lie to get off jury duty, you become an anti-citizen. You do yourself and your fellow citizens wrong. You still want influence in your community but you want no responsibility. This is what I call immaturity.

Pulling monkey business to get out of jury duty dishonors your name. And these poor unsophisticated people on the jury with no social pull, or who might have "juice" but who refuse to use it, are the real "players" and backbone in society.

Just to shoot a few more holes in your thinking:

Let me tell you about the lack of sophisticates I served with this year. I served on a six-person jury in Key West. Of the 7 of us (I was the alternate), 5 were college graduates. One was a business owner of a big construction firm here in the Keys. He, like myself, did not graduate from college. The only other male was a retired executive from a huge Madison Avenue firm. The four women were all sharp, well read, and fiercely independent. All of the women worked, in banking, retail, and the hospitality industry. The discussions in our break room ran from books to film to politics in China to music to you name it. No one in this group talked about reality TV shows or talked religion.

Down here, in Key West, which is the most "liberal" city in the Banana Republic of Florida, I found myself sitting with four Republicans and two Democrats and enjoying our talks immensely. I was the only registered Independent voter out of the seven. Still, the other six enjoyed me as much as I enjoyed them. The reason is we were honored to sit with other citizens who "did the right thing" by serving on a jury and not lying to get out of the service.

Our group of seven thought both the prosecutor and the defense attorney were terrific in their pre-trial warm-ups. We were anxious to hear the specifics of the case.

Unfortunately, after three days of jury selection and hearing opening arguments, the case was settled out of court before the first witness was called. The day we were dismissed, I must say, we stood out front of the courthouse, shaking each other's hands, and wishing we could have heard the case as we all wanted to know how the case was settled. We never found out. The settlement was sealed.

I received an incredible Thank-You letter from the judge who presided over our trial. It was the most heartfelt letter I've ever received from an authority figure in my life. Every single jurist received the same signed letter.

How anybody can turn their back on jury duty simply because it "interferes" with their work or will cut into their recreation time is beyond me. To do so, is to turn your back on emotions which make you feel good about yourself. These good emotions come guilt free from your heart when you "do the right thing".

Next time you get a summons to appear for jury selection, ask yourself "WWJD"?

What Would Jefferson Do?

Serve your community, and serve your country. In most areas, you are only eligible to serve once a year. And if they call again, go down, answer pre-selection questions honestly, and see if you are selected.

So you're a big businessman or a soccer mom with 3 kids or a doctor with a busy office ... MAKE THE TIME TO SERVE! Once you serve, you'll see how important it is to be a part of the legal system that decides guilt or innocence. Without a court of law and a jury of peers, we become a nation of oligarchs and plutocrats assigning guilt and innocence with money influence.

If you serve, shove your jury duty in the faces of all the wannabe American patriot blabbermouths who juiced the system so that they would not have to appear. Those are not the kind of people you want as friends anyway. Use your jury duty as a shield to shut their big yaps. You don't need people like this in your life. Drop 'em like a glowing ingot. Find yourself a better class of people, someone who doesn't lie as a second nature simply because jury duty is an inconvenience.

Not only that, but it's a cowardly thing to shirk your civil duty because associates or friends do it. Do you take all your cues from people with distorted views on the price of citizenship? Next time, do the right thing. Serve. Your kids will look up to you. Lead by example. And think about the other benefit: if you serve, you won't be bitching about the low quality of jurists in your locale.


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