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07/25/2007: there ain't one thing in this world i can do about folks except laugh

in weekly world news, i had jury duty yesterday, which consisted of two hours of waiting to see if i would be selected for voir dire and then 3.5 hours of listening to some of Fort Bend county's dumbest answer as to why they should or should not be seated on the jury panel.

if i am ever arraigned on charges, please forgo the "jury of my peers." you stand a better chance of finding someone i would consider a peer amongst rabid squirrels in Kitty Hollow Park. seriously.

once segregated into our 36 person panel we were told to drive over to the county criminal court building. drive as in drive ourselves. we were given little maps and the sheriff hemmed and hawed about anyone getting lost and suggested we all follow him, like a funeral procession. we all arrived except two, who showed up 10 minutes late, having issues finding the criminal courthouse. right away, if i was the prosecuting attorney, i would have struck these two Nobel Laureate finalists. and the courthouse was about 4 min and 6 blocks away. theoretically you could have walked it easier. so poor.

next up we were lined up in sextets and then lead into court for the voir dire. how lucky was i to be in between two women, both of whom had hips greater than 48”? seriously, built like bowling pins. i was hot and squished for 3.5 hour. great.

to make matters worse, the brain cell donor on my left kept answering other people's questions in sotto voce, usually adding the Sunday church mumblings of, "amen" and "tell it." so poor, times two.

the case? get ready: 16 year-old juvenile on trial for possession and distribution of less than 1/4 ounce of marijuana on a school campus. the case would have several witnesses, including law enforcement, school administrators, and a corroborative witness, i.e. the party who bought the drugs. no eye witnesses.

less than 1/4OZ? what, a fucking joint? are you kidding? what is the cost of this bullshit holy war? let's see, one judge, two, yes, two prosecuting attorneys, stenographer, bailiff, plus a defense attorney, 6 jury members, the court room, electricity, etc.

and in juvenile cases, there is no "guilty/not guilty" finding. it is a matter of finding "true/false" on the cause...since there will be no jail time and the State is not "prosecuting" per say, as they are “petitioning”. all this legalese pretty much meant the state was bucking for boot camp and possible family separation a la CPS. great.

the kid- avg height, weight, etc - looked like he could work for me at our shop. his mom was with him, visibly nervous and strained. the kid looked resigned.

anyway, i was from the outset apathetic to the entire process. a lot of time was spent of defining "beyond a reasonable doubt" and listening to this amalgamation of society's finest answer with their beliefs on children, drugs, our school system, etc. it was tough to not slap the shit out of several of those seated around me.

while the "petitioning" attorney spent much of his time trying to shape his questions to sound like the state was on the child's side and to try to include as many of these mouth-breathers as possible, the defense attorney spent most of her time trying to get to the root of those who would or would not be unbiased. and let's be honest, it would be hard to not be unbiased in this case: 16 yr old black make, sitting in a court room, charged with drug possession, facing witnesses from school administrators. i can only assume he didn't plead out b/c of the pending trip to boot camp and probably the loss of his mom as sole caretaker.

great set-up, state of Texas. you guys got this drug/children issue down. btw - please turn 18 so you can smoke and 21 so you can drink as much as you like. we tax those “sins.” fucking idiots.

the boiling point came at the end when the defense attorney allowed the 36 of us the chance to opt-out of being chosen by explaining why we would not be a good juror, either due to personal beliefs, biases, etc. not one, but two jackasses said they would not make good jurors b/c they are small business owners and are sooooooo busy that they would be distracted and could not provide a fair trial to this kid.

are you kidding? in the opening the judge told us the trial would more than likely complete on Wed - so you are losing one day of work in addition to the one you have already lost. one day. these mother fuckers can’t lose 12 hours to do their duty of service? and we wonder why as a country we are fucked? no one wants ANY responsibility. we all want a say, but we all want someone else to do the lifting. makes me angry thinking about it.

in the end, i was not chosen. widebody to my left, who spent all her time trying to fit the questions of the lawyers to her personal experiences was. wonder if gender and race had anything to do with that?

anyway - i pity us as a nation. i continue to bug my wife about moving...i think Vancouver, BC would be great. Dar mentioned Paris. of course, she thinks i am joking. i think i could wrap my life up here and be gone by Dec. no lie.

and think, i would miss the next Presidential election.


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