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Jury Duty Madness

Anyone who knows me know that I had jury duty today. They also know how badly I wanted to get out of it. I think I've come across as cavalier about it, without meaning to. But that's often the case... I act like I don't give a shit about something when in reality I care a great deal. So it's not that I was annoyed about being called to do my civic duty. I didn't want to shirk my responsibilities. It's more like I was stressed the fuck out about being called to do my civic duty. Let me explain...

I don't relish the thought of someones fate resting in my hands, because I don't know that I could be impartial on, well, anything.

I know myself very well: Most of the time I'm an emotional being and I follow my gut instincts. When it comes to a subject that I am or have been affected by, reason and facts simply don't enter into my decision making. However, when it comes to a subject I don't care about, all I look at are reason and fact, and I disconnect emotionally to the point of not caring if I'm wrong, because, hey, it's based on fact. I tend to empathize with people I find familiar in some way or another and tend to be judgemental of others who don't fit into my particular (and sometimes peculiar) idea of correctness. I'll dramatize situations and blow them out of proportion in my mind. Or sometimes I'll trivialize something extremely important, especially if it doesn't seem of great import to me personally. I can't stick to just the facts, nor can I follow the letter of the law, if I see fault in it. I see everything as a whole (based on my own personal perceptions), and then judge it to my own reality. Basically I'm either very pliable or very rigid in my thinking, and neither have any rhyme or reason. It's just the way I process life. I can say out loud that I could put aside these ideals/thoughts/practices in my head, but that would be a lie, and I'm no good at lying.

Now, take all of that and then combine it with the fact I've seen first hand just how big of an impact a tiny ripple in a life can make; how devastating one single mistake or misunderstanding can be to a person... I can't emotionally or mentally handle the responsibility of that. I know that I'd think about my decision for a long time afterward and it would gnaw at me. Did I make the right choice? Were they really guilty/not guilty? How is this going to affect them in the long run? Do they have family that this will impact? What are the long term ramifications of my decision to the world around me? I mean seriously, just thinking about thinking about all of that is what's had me so damn stressed out about being chosen. Which thankfully, I was not.

I know, it's really not that big of a deal, you say. It's not gonna be like Matlock, or a John Grisham book. Maybe not to a rational person, but to me it's a BFD of the same level. I've seriously been panic-attacking & gut-disturbancing everytime I've thought about it, from the time I got the summons until they dismissed me. Which is why I wanted to avoid the whole mess in the first place. And that's the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help me God.

©Flippa Bird
(So basically this is how I feel about jury duty...)
Photo By: Meh

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