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Judging Through Rose-Colored Glasses


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Thanks for the piece on jury duty ["A Jury of Whose Peers?" May 13]. I was especially interested in the lofty comments by Chief Judge Timothy Evans that jury duty is a civic duty and that people should serve "irrespective of what the salary is" and therefore not overburden the taxpayers.

Well, being a judge is also a civic duty, but I don't see Judge Evans offering to work for $17.20 a day. He's probably never been a juror and never will be one. In fact, jury duty is an onerous pain in the ass, and jurors do not get the nice perks that Judge Evans gets: a private office, a secretary, the option to start late and leave early, etc. In a democracy people are free to make their own decisions about what civic duty they want to contribute to, free of coercion by the state. (Sorry about that, Judge Evans.) Moreover, only people of leisure have the luxury of giving up their time for $17.20 a day. Not many working stiffs are going to risk their jobs for that. Has Evans ever heard the term minimum wage? Maybe he doesn't know that most people have real jobs to go to, have no options about it, and must make a living for their families. The judge needs a tour of the real world. We're not dilettantes out here.

Neil Elliott


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