Jury Duty Dbq Essay

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Like the Electoral College, several of the plans made by the Founding Fathers have lost some of their practicality. What worked in the past does not always work in the future, and this is the case for the jury system. The sole reason it was created was to ensure that each citizen was guaranteed a fair trial, which was a main concern due to Britain’s monarchy. In modern times, however, the judicial branch of the United States could easily give every citizen a fair trial with only a judge presiding over the case. It is clear that bench trials are superior to trials by jury because the citizens on juries are unqualified or biased, its benefits do not outweigh its burdens, and its claim to encourage civic duty is false. A jury, by definition, …show more content…

In the aforementioned comic, “Jury,” an unamused man thinks to himself, “A misdemeanor!? They’re wasting my time with a [expletive] misdemeanor!? Next time, I’m demanding a felony!” (Document E, 297). It is true that jury duty is a civic duty, but many citizens appear to share this man’s opinion on it. A majority of citizens see jury duty as some sort of punishment, which is made clear by popular television shows and other forms of media, which greatly diminishes the value of the jury system. In cases where the media plays a major role, such as the Casey Anthony case, jurors can be endangered after a verdict is made (Document D, 295). A woman was told that Anthony was found not guilty, and she said that Anthony would not be accepted back into the community and would have to move away. Jurors of the case who came to the verdict would also be in danger of being ostracized by the community for their unfavorable decision; if these citizens had known about the outcry that would follow the verdict, they most likely wouldn’t have served on the jury at all. A total of 5,082 trials were jury trials in one year, which was a small fraction of all cases tried in the same year (Document A, 289). Since the jury system has been around since the country claimed its independence, and the population has been growing rapidly since then, it would be assumed that a trial involving citizens would become more commonplace. This is not the case, however, so it can be inferred that citizens dislike jury duty so much that it has failed to gain any traction since its inception. Civic duty is now perceived as civic punishment, and it is safe to assume that it is mostly thanks to jury

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