I reported for jury duty this morning. The line of potential jurors stretched across the courthouse square. Of about 70 people in line at one time there were several, especially young women, wearing shorts and flip flops. Others were wearing dirty jeans and tank tops. While this is a rural community where people tend to dress casually, even the cowboys have a shirt with a collar and a clean pair of levis. People wearing short shorts or tank tops are denied access to the courtroom.
What were they thinking? Maybe just hoping to get off the hook?
I have to agree with the others and the people who showed up dressed in an inappropriate manner probably thought it would get them out of jury duty. It would be interesting to know whether or not they had to pay for thinking that way. In my area, that would have been seen as contempt of court and fines leveled.
Talk about perfect timing, I had a hug on that issue not too long ago: "Easy Ways to Get Out of Jury Duty," and these people should not have embarrassed themselves--just read my piece. Oh well. That does point toward the question you asked if "they can read?"
Glad you got a "hug" out of it-- I'll go find it a little later. Funny thing is, when I got to the front of the line, appropriately dressed, The man said "You have been excused. Didn't you get a call?"
"Did you send in the reply card listing your reason."
Yes, I had.
"Well, we are a little understaffed-- you are free to go. Catch you next time."
I went shopping, appropriately dressed.
I never thought of dressing down to be excluded. I usually reply to the notice that I am an anarchist and that stops them.
Showing up for jury duty in shorts and tank tops demonstrates a total lack of respect for the court system in general. The summons, however, should be re-worded with "NO SHORTS OR TANK TOPS" in LARGE capitol letters, followed by a notice (also in caps) that appearing for duty in inappropriate attire will be considered contempt subject to a hefty fine.
That said, I used to live in a county that had a jury call-in system, i.e. on the weekend before the Monday one was to appear for duty, potential jurors could call a number on the summons to find out if any jury trials were even on the docket that week. If not, the call was noted - to prevent a charge of contempt - and you were off the hook for jury duty for months or even years.
Don't know how it works where I live now, but if I'm ever summoned and there's no call-in option, I certainly won't show up in shorts or a tank top! ;D
Some people have no shame. I wouldn't be surprised if the bailiff told them to go find something more appropriate to wear and to come back, or face contempt charges.
They're lucky. If you get a jury summons down here, and it says no shorts and no flip-flops, and a judge sees you in shorts and flip-flops, you'll get cited for contempt of court!
that is what should have happened. Jury duty is an obligation. If they do not take that seriously, then we are obliged to use some legal force on them.
There are numerous ways to wiggle out of jury duty if this is one's intention. Dressing as though you are headed for the beach would be either direct disrespect to a Court of Law or simple-mindedness.
In either case, I can understand your disgust Rochelle. It seems no matter where we go or what the occasion, there will be those with no common sense nor even self-respect.
What's there to do about this nonsense? Just thank heaven it is not "contagious!"
I managed a talent office years ago where we *happened* to book entertainers at the top gentleman's clubs in a major metro area ..... nothing seedy, other than where they worked. In fact, I managed the health and dental program.
Anyway, we had highly intelligent clients working on advanced college degrees, and we had people that had to be told to wear a bra to court. It just never occurred to them that it would be inappropriate. They weren't trying to get out of court, just not .... couth.
I'm sure this is part of the problem here, too. Some people go to church in their work clothes-- which is fine, they are not kicked out, and Jesus doesn't care.
But I keep thinking that if --for instance-- you were going to apply for a job, that you would at least try to be neat, clean and give some hint of self respect to make a positive or serious impression.
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