Most people dread the prospect of being called for jury duty. But after having served, in my experience, most jurors surprisingly say they are glad did so. For many, the process can be intimidating. Many have no idea what to expect. Also, many worry about how long the trial may last and what that will mean for their employment, school, childcare, etc. Now, there’s the extra layer of worrying about what safety measures are in place in light of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The jury selection process can be tedious, indeed. Some jurors have to travel many miles to their county seat to report. Job schedules and childcare have to be juggled. Work slips have to be given to employers. Daily life is interrupted. Everyone is in the same boat.
The morning of, prospective jurors sometimes have to wait hours to find out if they will even serve. It can be unnerving. Once selected, the uncertainty of how long a trial will last is present. Many things go through our heads. But once selected, you might as well make the most of the situation. It’s an opportunity to learn how the system works and be a part of it. Hopefully, the subject matter of the trial is interesting, too. It usually is.
In addition, sitting as a juror is much more than our civic duty. It also is an incredibly important obligation to our community we are sworn to fulfill to the best of our ability. It also is a privilege to live in a country which believes we should be judged by an impartial jury of our peers. Without jurors, this system would not work.
If selected, enjoy the opportunity to serve. You are there because there is a problem that cannot be solved without you. Take this opportunity to be part of the solution.