Jury Duty

I just spent a couple of days in the Kings County (Brooklyn) court system, fulfilling my civic duty as a potential juror.

I have mixed feelings about jury duty. On one side, the thought of spending a week or two sitting on a trial and not working is just painful. I’d end up working late nights every day just to stay afloat.

But the other side does believe that a jury system is the best system we are likely to come up with, and I would probably be a good juror.

What kills me is that the legal system is so……damn…….slow.

I get it, the process is optimized for the judges and the lawyers, so wasting jurors’ time is a feature not a bug. But it’s painful.

At least in the main waiting area there is now WiFi. But once you get called up as a potential juror you are in a no WiFi and fairly dead 4G zone. And they would often dismiss us for “15 minutes”. Not enough time to break out the laptop. But sometimes 15 means 15 and sometimes 15 means 50. I probably should have just read a book, trying to do work was pretty unproductive.

We had a criminal case where the lawyers were being very careful with jury selection. So a pool of 60 potential jurors was not enough to produce a full jury. By the afternoon of day 2 I had been rejected as a juror and was dismissed. They were up to 8 jurors at that point.

Anyway, I’m now done. And in the County of Kings (I love saying it that way) that means I don’t have to do it again for at least 8 years. Go Brooklyn.


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