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Echoes and Mirrors» Blog Archive » Lord help me if I ever get called for Jury Duty

Lord help me if I ever get called for Jury Duty

Well, this is pretty interesting:

There is little question that, at the Founding, jurors were triers of both the law and the facts. In essence, this provided a popular check on an overreaching legislature and a supine judiciary, although a check that would only operate on a case-by-case basis. A jury could find that a statute was unjust generally, or only as applied in the particular case. This would affect the general enforceability of a statute only if many juries agreed. Although juries retain the power to refuse to apply an unjust law, beginning in the Nineteenth Century, judges started prohibiting lawyers from advocating this to a jury upon pain of contempt. The Fully Informed Jury Association (FIJA) is a non-profit organization aiming to inform all Americans about their rights, powers and responsibilities when serving as trial juror. Click on the link to learn more about jury nullification.

Make sure to read the comments. Here is the Cato-at-Liberty post that inspired it all.

There have been some very ugly rumblings in the realm of civil rights and civil liberties lately, and they’re taking place in the courts now, rather than just on the street or in congress. The keepers of the law are not only not standing up for the constitution, they are dismembering it as quickly as possible.

I get the impression that I’m not witnessing something new but rather coming out of a coma to find that things have been like this for quite some time.

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