Here I am, in the flesh, back from vacation. Two weeks of crime-free wonder, no thought of good guys, bad guys, or those (like most of us) stuck somewhere in between.
But now it's back into the fray. Three pages of emails, some of which I'd love to share but can't, most of which got binned immediately. None titled "You Screwed Up," which was a relief.
I thought I'd ease myself back in here with a couple of replies to comments left while I was away.
First, and several people have asked this, someone asked how to find out about trials other than the bare details I post. The truth is, "With difficulty." If the media cover the case, you can get info there. If it's more than idle curiosity, you could always try calling the defense lawyer or the prosecutor to see if they will answer your question(s). We're pretty good about being open and accessible, though you'll have to understand that there are some things we can't answer or provide. But we're friendly folks, so no harm in asking if you need to.
Second, this comment after my guest blogger Mackie's post about being on a jury:
I have also served several times on a jury, with similar sentiments afterward. Important duty, and interesting to be involved. Financial impact for others, though, is extreme and a six or seven month trial would destroy, or at least completely rearrange, anyone's life. Would be interested in DAC's opinions on this.
Well, my opinion is that I agree. It can be a huge imposition on people. Which is why we see people bucking to get out of it, and rolling their eyes when picked. But I think it's important to point out that most trials (certainly criminal ones) last less than one week. And you get a whole $60 a day!!I've wondered about having professional jurors who travel around hearing cases. But there's something wonderful (not to mention Constitutional) about having twelve people from the very community in which the crime was committed as the judges of the facts in a case.
I'm also trying to remember one single juror who has said they regret serving, and I can't come up with one. Yes, it's an inconvenience and, sometimes, pretty boring. But (not to sound like a Communist) when we live in a society we sometimes have to sacrifice our immediate best interests for those in our community. Like helping an old lady across the street when you weren't planning to cross. Okay, so it's a very large street and takes a few days to cross. (Hmmm, I wonder if that chicken could do it -- help the old lady, not be a juror -- you know, the one that's always crossing the road.)
So, bottom line, I agree it's an imposition. But it's almost always a brief one and one that is so important to our society I wouldn't advocate changing it. I might increase the remuneration a little but that might mean a tax increase, and we sure as heck know how people feel about that!
Third of all, some pics from where I was recently.
Now, just because it's my blog and I can: first, my parents' house, where we spent the first week.Next, the second house we stayed at, and its view:And no trip to France is complete without seeing the most wonderful city in the world, Paris:
And I just love this picture, the curious look on his face, the fact that he's covering up my triple chins... (yes, he's the lad in the picture at the top of the blog, growing up, isn't he?!)