Different River

”You can never step in the same river twice.” –Heraclitus

January 24, 2008

Is this slavery?

Filed under: — Different River @ 12:46 pm

The 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution states:

“Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.”

That Amendment was passed in 1865.

Now, look what happened in Greely, Colorado, in 2008:

Court plucks people off street to serve on juries

he Associated Press
Article Last Updated: 01/16/2008 09:38:39 PM MST

GREELEY, Colo.—With only 39 out of 200 people summonsed for jury duty showing up Wednesday, court officials with emergency jury duty subpoenas headed to the street to randomly pick 50 people to serve on juries.

Witnesses told television stations that administrators approached people walking on the sidewalk, at a grocery store and even a nearby gym, where people in their workout clothes headed to court under a threat of a contempt of court citation.

“This is not right,” Karen McMillan told administrators. She was approached while in a grocery story and ordered to serve.

Doesn’t that sound like “involtunary servitude”? And it was certainly not for the conviction of a crime — anyone convicted of a crime would probably be let off due to potential bias!

“Judge sues over court mishap”

Filed under: — Different River @ 12:38 pm

A judge in Massachusetts is suing his own court for a knee injury sustained when he tripped on the courthouse steps.

Courthouses must have really high insurance rates, since there are lawyers hanging around them all the time. ;-)

It might be worth noting, in this context, that while in the U.S. judges are virtually always (former) lawyers, this is not true everywhere. In some countries, “lawyer” and “judge” are separate career tracks.

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