5 pillars of citizenship…jury duty…

(forewarned is forearmed…these are my freeflowing…half-formed…and in no way instructive…thoughts about…what it means to be a citizen in america…at least 90% of what your read here has been…already said…more eloquently…by someone else…if anything i write…intrigues you…challenges you…provokes you…i encourage you to…do your homework and look it up…that’s why al gore invented the internet…)

my buddy tommy and i got called for jury duty yesterday…i can’t figure how that worked out…except that after tommy left hell.a., we were roommates for a year…that was 3 years ago…jesus…anyway…that’s the only explanation i can come up with…lucky for me though…how often do i get to waste away the morning with my best friend…

he was hoping to get out of it…and he suggested that we stage a fight in the jury room…so we could get kicked out…I don’t think he would have enjoyed getting arrested…so i didn’t indulge him…tommy ducked out during the boring orientation video…

besides…i wanted to serve…every branch of government has a level that requires the participation of the people…the judiciary…as designed in america…needs jurors…it’s funny to me that educated and fairminded folks…like my friend…do backflips to get out of jury duty…but piss and moan when the justice system produces a result they don’t agree with…

now i’m well aware that courts in america are inordinately…dangerous…places for a black man…and i know…that has mostly to do with how the system serves to the advantage of…people with money…but i can’t help believing that if more black faces were a part of the system…things would be more equitable…call me idealistic…of the 150 or so of us in the room, there were 4 people of color…

the video finished and tommy came back from the bathroom talking about how a guy got beatdown…excuse me while i repeat myself…beatdown…in the hall…in front of the sheriff’s offices…all i could think was…how often does something like that happen and we never hear about it…

we spent the rest of the morning talking shit…and playing cards…noon thirty rolled around and it turned out that jury selection for 4 or 5 trials had been canceled…i wouldn’t be surprised if it had something to do with the brawl in the hallway…they called one jury…and dismissed the rest of us for the day…oh well…it was enough just to show up…we all should do more of that…

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