Judicial Conscription


"United States District Court" reads the return address on an envelope I received today.

It is a summons for jury duty.

My honest attitude is, "I'd love to be on a jury," but it is genuinely impossible for me to do so: I have absolutely no transportation, especially to go all the way to Tucson, 65 miles from this front door to the courthouse. Plus, my health is such that, truly, I have trouble walking across a room.

Plus, according to the rules . . . well, let me put it this way: it's easy to see that the government is run by the government.

If one must travel 60 or more miles to answer this summons, one will be allowed to check into certain approved hotels; but one must pay for the room, then present a receipt next day to the PIGs, the Persons In Government, and hope to be reimbursed. Theoretically, one does get reimbursed at a certain rate per mile, but nowhere is there provision for destitute people. And there’s no way that I could pay up to $90, or more, for a hotel room, even if I were able to get there.

It's easy to see that the government is run by the government.

One is "allowed" and in fact urged to respond to the summons via the internet; it's spelled out very pointedly that a mere letter-on-paper asking to be excused will go unheeded. Again no provision for destitute citizens.

So, I'm wondering if my best bet is to ignore the summons completely. To treat it as, 50 years ago, I treated notices from my draft board: chuck it into the barrel.

Then, if some federal PIG, Person In Government, comes to arrest me, I could perhaps expect medical care while in custody.

I'm wondering if my best bet is to treat it as, 50 years ago, I treated notices from my draft board: chuck it into the barrel.

Well, a friend who used to be a nurse in a hospital told me that when police brought a prisoner to the hospital for treatment, they often released him . . . so that the prisoner-patient became responsible for the treatment!

For now, I’m going to look at the "ejuror" site and see just what questions there are and what answers I will be able to give — if, that is, there’s a place for an explanation. Usually, in my experience, one must jump through a bunch of hoops, and over a bunch of hurdles, before getting to a place to explain.

But isn't it wonderful to live in a free country?

Share This


Steve C.

You might try a FIJA (fully informed jury response). Say you believe that juries have the right to judge both the law and the facts of the case. If you don't believe that the law, as applied to this defendant in this case is just, you will vote to acquit. That might get you out of it.

Michael F.S.W. Morrison

From anything I've seen, the FIJA approach might get one excused after the potentials are first gathered. I didn't see any place to make such a note on the original paperwork.
In fact, that I might be able to free some defendant from the talons of the Insane War on Some Drugs is why I really would like to be on a jury.
But, funny thing, after I filled in all the blanks and sent my electronic submission . . . after ALL those weeks and months, I've never seen or heard another word.
After my heart-felt and courteous response, no one in the court system has had the decency to answer me in any form or fashion.

© Copyright 2019 Liberty Foundation. All rights reserved.

Opinions expressed in Liberty are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the Liberty Foundation.

All letters to the editor are assumed to be for publication unless otherwise indicated.