I had my first experience in being in the jury pool this week. Talk about grueling! There were hundreds of us called forth to the Phoenix courts to sit around and wait to see if we would be chosen. It felt like school all over again.
Pamela Bowman – Here!
Line up with your number single file. Follow your leader and obey instructions. We all stood outside the courtroom…. nervous. Some of us suppressed our desire to giggle and others…. didn’t.
We marched in like good little boys and girls. Sat in our chairs. Gave all the correct answers. Anybody who got out of line was promptly put back into place by the JUDGE! I saw some lips quivering, voices shook and hands trembled. Then what we all were waiting for finally occurred. RECESS!
After lunch we had to give brief synopsis of our lives. More information than I wanted to hear or share! Complete strangers sharing personal information. Not pleasant. We received our lesson in law and then we had a quiz followed by questions and two guest lecturers, the attorneys. I glanced at the defendant and listened to the judge explain that he was not required to say or do anything. That it was up to the prosecutor to prove that he was guilty.
“Do you understand that he is, at this moment, innocent, until he is proven guilty? Does anyone here think he is guilty?” We all knew the answer. She had been quite clear. We aren’t dolts, but come on, he didn’t have to verbally say anything. He was screaming quite loudly with every gesture, eye contact, and false smile.
An hour later I was released on good (or maybe bad) behavior. I didn’t care. I was free. I did not walk, but ran to my car. Fair and impartial? Is there really such a thing? I have lived for 50 years. I have life experiences that have served me well in deciding things. Judging is what we all do all day, every day. That is life. So step off!
I hate single file lines! Sheepy, sheepy, go to grass. NO! How’s this for a lesson. This is America, the land of the free. You can tell me what I should think, but doesn’t mean I will. Actually, kind of means I won’t!