This article is regarding the jury duty service, a duty that currently no other country, except for the US and the UK, poses on its citizens. Other countries saw the need to abolish it (or some never had it) partly because of the unreasonable burden jury duty poses on jurors.
For some people it is the financial burden it poses, since the employers are not required by law to pay their employees while they are on jury duty. Others have family responsibilities, kids, sick or disabled family member to take care of, and so on, and being forced to leave their responsibilities and sit on jury duty, can not only be harmful to their families, but also be a source of stress for a juror himself/herself, as if there wasn’t enough stress in people’s lives already.
And we are not talking about once in a life time service, and not even once in a five year service, but year after year for the rest of one’s life.
The fact is that majority of the citizens do not want to sit on a jury duty. Seeing jury summons in the mail is perhaps the most unwanted and unpleasant occurrence for most people. No wonder during the jury selection process the only thing on potential jurors’ minds is how to get out of it, since they all come prepared with all kinds of excuses hoping to get out of it soon and to get back to their lives. So, the first whole day, and in some cases days are wasted on jury selection (excuse or not to excuse), not to mention the huge financial expense the counties and states have to endure as a result of the existence of the whole jury duty system.
And how can a forced service benefit anyone. How can they do a good job when their mind in on whether they can pay their bills during their service, or whether the family is OK, or they might miss out on important events on the job?
How about the stress of having to decide someone else’s fate, when forced to make a decision about complicated legal matters with no legal training or forced to make a decision against one’s conscience? And we know that often times the jurors leave the court rooms traumatized, after realizing they have made a decision against their conscience, just because they have been forced to follow the law. We know there are good laws and there also are bad laws, and the bad laws should be thrown away. Isn’t that also what the jurors are for: to help change the bad laws? But the judges not only won’t tell the potential jurors that they have a right to follow their conscience, or about the jury nullification as stated in the Constitution, but they force them to just follow the law.
So, what’s the benefit of having jury duty system when the jurors have to blindly follow the law they may not even fully understand, why not – as the judge Julius Howard Miner suggested – get rid of jurors completely and replace them with a panel of experts, who are trained and understand the laws.
Wouldn’t it be great if our law makers followed Judge Julius Howard Miner’s suggestion and helped get rid of jury duty service and freed people of the unreasonable burden the jury duty poses on them? If more people ask they might just do that.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Nataliya_Nazaryan/2317991