Ted Leung on the air
Ted Leung on the air: Open Source, Java, Python, and ...
Tue, 12 Aug 2003
Jury duty concluded
Today concluded my jury service. I was one of six jurors deciding a civil case. The case was an automobile accident injury, with the accompanying pain and suffering damages. It's an unusual experience to be on a jury, hear all the evidence, and actually decide the case. When the trial got under way, it was a little unreal, and I felt a little like I was watching TV. But you're not watching TV. The attorneys are talking to you. The witnesses are talking to you, and the judge is talking to you. Something that surprised me was that the jurors were given the opportunity to question witnesses (via written question) once the attorneys had finished their questioning. When the defense counsel has rested his case, you are the ones that everyone is looking at to make the call.

Most of us don't regularly make decisions that have the impact that a jury decision can. It was a very uncomfortable feeling to go home over the weekend and think about whether one party or the other should be punished. Lawsuits are about justice, and not about mercy. But justice without mercy creates brittle relationships, where the only thing that matters is being "right" and having our rights fully exercised. Unfortunately, justice is the only thing that the legal system can bring to the world. But we need more than that.

Jury duty is one of those situations like serving in the Army. You randomly take people from a cross section of society, and force them to serve together in some way. At the end of our deliberations today, a fellow juror expressed thankfulness that we didn't end up with a jury power struggle. It never occurred to me that such a thing could happened with our group. We spent our waiting times (there were a lot) working on a jigsaw puzzle of a Salvador Dali painting, and getting to know each other. Today, we worked hard to render a verdict that we all thought was fair and reasonable. The experience restored some of my faith in the judicial system, our system of government, and my fellow citizens. Before I served on this jury, I had the attitude that I think many of us have, that jury duty is a pain in the rear. I know that I have a very different view after these last 4 days.

[01:12] | [society] | # | TB | F | G | 1 Comments | Other blogs commenting on this post
You can subscribe to an RSS feed of the comments for this blog: RSS Feed for comments

Add a comment here:

You can use some HTML tags in the comment text:
To insert a URI, just type it -- no need to write an anchor tag.
Allowable html tags are: <a href>, <em>, <i>, <b>, <blockquote>, <br/>, <p>, <code>, <pre>, <cite>, <sub> and <sup>.

You can also use some Wiki style:
URI => [uri title]
<em> => _emphasized text_
<b> => *bold text*
Ordered list => consecutive lines starting spaces and an asterisk





Remember my info?

twl JPG


Ted Leung FOAF Explorer

I work at the Open Source Applications Foundation (OSAF).
The opinions expressed here are entirely my own, not those of my employer.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

Now available!
Professional XML Development with Apache Tools : Xerces, Xalan, FOP, Cocoon, Axis, Xindice
Technorati Profile
PGP Key Fingerprint
My del.icio.us Bookmarks
My Flickr Photos

RSS 2.0 xml GIF
Comments (RSS 2.0) xml GIF
Atom 0.3 feed
Feedburner'ed RSS feed

< August 2003 >
      1 2
3 4 5 6 7 8 9


Macintosh Tips and Tricks

Blogs nearby
geourl PNG

/ (1567)
  books/ (33)
  computers/ (62)
    hardware/ (15)
    internet/ (58)
      mail/ (11)
      microcontent/ (58)
      weblogs/ (174)
        pyblosxom/ (36)
      www/ (25)
    open_source/ (145)
      asf/ (53)
      osaf/ (32)
        chandler/ (35)
        cosmo/ (1)
    operating_systems/ (16)
      linux/ (9)
        debian/ (15)
        ubuntu/ (2)
      macosx/ (101)
        tips/ (25)
      windows_xp/ (4)
    programming/ (156)
      clr/ (1)
      dotnet/ (13)
      java/ (71)
        eclipse/ (22)
      lisp/ (34)
      python/ (86)
      smalltalk/ (4)
      xml/ (18)
    research/ (1)
    security/ (4)
    wireless/ (1)
  culture/ (10)
    film/ (8)
    music/ (6)
  education/ (13)
  family/ (17)
  gadgets/ (24)
  misc/ (47)
  people/ (18)
  photography/ (25)
    pictures/ (12)
  places/ (3)
    us/ (0)
      wa/ (2)
        bainbridge_island/ (17)
        seattle/ (13)
  skating/ (6)
  society/ (20)

[Valid RSS]

del.icio.us linkblog



Listed on BlogShares

Locations of visitors to this page
Where are visitors to this page?

pyblosxom GIF