Jury Summons to the Wastebasket

Monday, June 28, 2004
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Sometimes, it’s nice to know that you can have at least a little influence on your parents. ;–)

My Dad had been telling me about the jury summons he received recently, and how he gets them every 2-3 years. Sometimes, they expect him, or my Mom, to drive 40 miles from the suburbs, into a city they don’t even know their way around, so they can sit on a jury. Of course, at almost 80 years old, it’s just not feasible, and it ain’t gonna happen.

So I told my dad what I have been doing, for the last dozen years, when I get a jury summons: I pitch it in the wastebasket. No hesitation, no guilt, just pitch it. My dad’s ears perked up at that, and he thought, “hmmmm.” After talking about it a few times, I kinda eased any concerns he had about that, because quite frankly, if the court ever approaches me with this issue, I’ll just say “What jury summons?” Without registered mail, they just can’t proved that I ever received one. And that’s that. They won’t have the time nor resources to pursue it any further.

Why do I pitch them? Not only because I do not believe in the value of the current system, but also, in my career, I don’t have the time to take off for a week, two weeks, or whatever, to sit my can in a jury box, and give up my paychecks for a paltry $15 a day. I will not put myself in a hole, work-wise, so I can “do my civic duty,” and I refuse to take a financial hit like that by blowing off paychecks. It’s that simple. If I’m going to blow off a paycheck, it’ll be because I’m rafting the Gauley in West Virginia, or photographing the Blue Ridge.

So now Dad is all passionate about this, and he tells me that after he made calls to his county offices, he found out that he can have his name removed from the voter registration list, and that this will help to curb those pesky jury summons from now on. He ended by saying he doesn’t want to vote for any of the scumbags anyway. Ha–go Dad!

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