CHRIS ON RAILS

a personal weblog of everything nice

Jurors are not that intelligent and Jury Duty sucked. October 3, 2007

Filed under: Jury,Jury Duty,Law,Life,Society — allyouneediscourage @ 10:09 pm

 Gavel

I try to avoid posting entries with negative opinions about everyday people, but I really have to say this.  Today, I went to court to participate in juror selection for the first time in my life.  I was the youngest person there.  It wasn’t exactly thrilling…in fact, I was amazed at how much time I wasted today when I could be preparing for my interview with Citigroup on Friday.  Instead of feeling like I was taking part in something truly important, the whole process was boring, depressing, and inefficient.

I’m 21, a full time college student, taking 18 credits, just accepted a part-time position with Adidas, and I have multiple very important job interviews coming up this month.  It’s pretty obvious doing jury duty could be the most inconvenient thing in the world for me other than getting stabbed.  Unfortunately, the useless women in the court office told me that being a student does not excuse me.  APPARENTLY IT DOES…because I spoke to two judges and both of them dismissed me with approval from both lawyers.

I said to the first judge, “I’m a full time senior student at Rutgers, and I know that doesn’t excuse me…”  She said, “Oh but it does, I’m dismissing you and we can probably schedule you for January when you don’t have classes.”  Score 1.

I said to the second judge, “I have a job interview on Friday and I’m a full time student right now at Rutgers.”  She said, “Oh so you’ll be missing classes.”  I said, “Yeah I have a 6:10 tonight, and I have classes from 11:30 to 4:10 tomorrow.”  She said, “Ok I’ll dismiss you, you better goto those classes.”  Score 2.

Caution This Is Sparta

So what I don’t understand here is if both judges and all the lawyers will dismiss me just like that, why is my time being wasted?  I had to stay at the court from 8am to 3pm.  I actually read a full issue of GQ from start to finish, and then I started crying and hallucinating.  If things were done more efficiently, I would have been out of there and everyone would have saved time.  Don’t reschedule me, just let me go, I can be a juror in the future.  The only thing I got out of today was not having to do this for another 3 years.

During one of the proceedings with a judge, a panel of 7 people were interviewed before two lawyers in a screening process.  Six out of seven people said they do not read.  One person said reading puts them to sleep.  Three people didn’t follow the news at all through any media format.  Only one person used the internet for news.  One person said they spend most of their time watching Law & Order.  Two people had no hobbies.  Four out of seven were unemployed and not retired.

Oh…my…God…right before my eyes, I saw the huge generation gap differences.  These people had to be at least 40 years of age with many at around 50ish.  Seeing this display of primitive and uninformed people was interesting.  Questions were running through my mind as I left the courthouse.  So no one watches television, uses the internet, watches the news, or does any sort of reading?  I thought kids were getting dumber these days compared to the older generations…maybe not?  Shouldn’t you be somewhat intelligent to be a juror?  Do you judge cases with logic or emotion?  Do you need to be well informed about the world and the news to make moral decisions?  I guess this is how jurors are like, and I’m happy that people will give up their time to help dispense justice.  The people who are doing things like running a business or a hotshot investment banker will rarely be the ones you’ll see on a jury panel.

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