Okay, I'm much less upset and bitter today.
The judge had us come in at 1:00 so I went to work in the morning and left for the court house mid-day. One of the other people in the jury pool had car trouble and since the court won't start any proceedings without the entire jury pool present, we got off to a bit of a late start. We started the jury selection process with a whole lot of questions about where you live, what you do for a living, what your children do, whether you've served on a jury before, whether you know anyone on the list of witnesses, whether you can agree that someone is innocent until proven guilty, etc.
I think that I feel a lot less bitter and angry today because when you sit in the court room and listen to the questions and see how seriously the jury system is taken by the judge, lawyers, and other jurors, it is much easier to see why you aren't a stupid sucker for participating in the American system of justice after all. My mood yesterday was gravely colored by the fact that I sat for the entire day only to be called, sworn in, and sent home. It felt like a waste of my time (I know that in the scheme of things that I'm not that important, but I HATE having my time wasted). When you think about it, thank goodness I live in a country that allows for trial by a jury of my fellow citizens rather than just by sitting judges. You also realize as you hear each of the 30 people in the jury pool answer questions, that other people have to overcome a lot more inconvenience and hardship than you do. Because the case is a DUI case, the question of each jurors' relationship to alcohol came up. One woman said that her husband is an alcoholic and she finally had to leave him two weeks ago. I mean, I'm sure she's got lots of other things she would rather be doing than sit on a DUI trial, but she was there doing her thing and smiling about it so I figured that I needed to fix my attitude.
Don't get me wrong getting the jury summons still sucks, but the sky over my world won't fall because of it and in the end if people don't do their civic duty, the alternatives are a lot worse. So here's to sucking it up and doing the right thing …
No … I'm not bipolar (All evidence in these posts to the contrary … But then, if I was truly bipolar would I know it???).
I have to report for Perry Mason day 3 in the morning tomorrow so I probably won't get to work at all.