- Politics and Social Issues
Why I hate Jury Duty
It starts with a letter!
How many of you have received a letter from the city informing you that you have been chosen as a juror? If you haven't, you will, especially if you have voted in previous elections. As you open the letter, it states that you are obligated to perform this duty, except in certain circumstances beyond your control. It, also, states that you will be compensated, financially, for your time.
I don't mean to complain. The City is giving me the privilege to help decide a case- be it criminal or civil. To some it would be a privilege, but the fact of the matter is, I don't like courts, lawyers or judges. It makes me feel uncomfortable. I think the whole process is boring and I don't like it.
My ordeal began when I got called to Jury Duty, Worse of all, It started on a Monday. I got up early to get to the Circuit Court at 8:30. I forgot my summons, but the clerk gave me a break and stamped my parking ticket so I would not get charged for my parking. How nice of the City to pay for my parking.
Then I waited in a room full of people I didn't know. I was surprised that they stopped having free coffee, juice and donuts. Then, I see an electronic marquee board that says that the vending machines are around the corner. I guess the City has a tight budget. No more freebies.God bless America! I sat in the room and saw some cable TV show on a house that was being sold on the market and it looked interesting.
All of a sudden. We were informed that we would see a 10 minute video done by a Norfolk official detailing the duties of a juror and what it involved. The video was state of the art and looked like it was done Hollywood style. So, that's what happened to my coffee, donuts and juice!! It got invested in a video for the City. I should feel so flattered that my free coffee went to produce a video.
Afterwards, we were called by a Deputy and were escorted to a second floor courtroom. There we sat in a room where we waited for about 1 whole hour. To be honest, I took a nap and so did many others. I, especially, noticed a lady who had severe asthma and had to walk with a tank. The poor lady, after going through the stairs, was having trouble catching her breath, but she made it.
Then, came the big time! We were called to the courtroom where we were asked an endless array of questions from the judges as well as the lawyers. We were informed that the case to be judged was a civil case. A patient had brought a suit against her doctor and that lady had some high priced lawyers at her side!! It was brought to our attention that this case was going to last 5 days. Mind you, I had been at court since 8:30 and it was 1 pm and counting. Think that was bad? Imagine 5 days? Please, Lord, Deliver me from endless civil suits!!!
MY Way out!
Then, as all the lawyers and judges talked about the length of the case, out came the classic question-WHO CAN'T BE HERE FOR THE FIVE DAYS? Praise God, Thank you Jesus! I took advantage of this and said that I needed to take my daughter- in- law to the airport which was true, by the way. Alas, my hope turned to uncertainly when we were told to wait further, as the clock kept on ticking. Finally, my name got called and I stepped in a room with the Judge and an army of lawyers. I felt like I was questioned by the Spanish Inquisition.
I was asked about my appointment with my daughter- in- law. They asked me if I can get someone else to take her. I guess they saw on my face JUROR,so I kindly said no. We were driving 35 minutes to take my daughter- in- law to the airport and my wife didn't feel comfortable driving in another city. With that I left and sat down. Again, a long wait.
Then, the final outcome. Drum Roll, please? The selection started and the jurors were selected. I was not called and left, relieved that I was spared extra time in the courtroom. Maybe someone else would have liked the CLASH OF THE TITANS in the courtroom but seeing high priced lawyers suing a doctor is not my cup of tea. Please don't get me wrong, I know civil courts are necessary but it reminds me of how we, as Americans, are quick to sue for a fast buck. Anyway, so much for my thoughts on being a juror!