Friday, May 13, 2011

Is #1319 qualified to judge?

Today I watched the livestream of jury selection for the Casey Anthony trial.* So much drama on so many levels! Today my heart/attention were captured by a potential juror -- #1319. Her face was never shown but we heard her voice as she responded in voir dire. All we know about her is that she is a single, over-50 African-American woman who --

• Says she would have no problems being on this jury despite religious beliefs

• Loves Farmville

• "Hates" TV news, watches only "cowboys and western movies"

• Has "no friends"

• Never thought about the death penalty before

• Could sentence someone to life in prison and "maybe" could impose the death penalty

• Wants to be on the jury because it's her duty "as a citizen"

Incredibly, she was held over and may be seated.

Huh? What?

This woman sounds more than a little odd to me. No friends, "hates" TV news, loves Farmville and Westerns? (Where does she even find that many Westerns to watch in 2011?)

This case is going to include sophisticated scientific and psychological evidence. Can this woman, who (to our knowledge) has no job or close family ties, put them into any real-life context?

Is she qualified to sit in judgment of the infamous "Tot Mom?" But then, what does make a qualified juror? Will Ms. 1319 balance out someone trendier and more social? Just because this woman looks off-center to me, does that mean her moral compass is off?

I am glad I do what I do for a living -- use words to sell shit -- instead of deciding matters of life and death. For while I don't know if #1319 is qualified to judge Casey Anthony, I admit I'm not qualified to choose a jury. I have so much respect for Judge Perry and anyone who picks up the gavel.

*That was on one window, another window had the Cubs kicking the World Champion asses of the Giants. I love my computer!

Image: Salvatore Vuono /


Last night I watched Chaz Bono discuss his transgender journey and I found it unsettling. Not because I have any issue with his decision -- what could be more personal? But because he now reminds me, in facial expressions and vocal inflections, of a friend's husband.