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Jury Duty

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May. 13th, 2009 | 05:56 pm

I was called in for jury duty yesterday and was put in the pool of prospective jurors for a trial.

But today I was the first one booted off.

It could have been because I think I contributed to an election campaign for one of the defense lawyers, or because I pointed out how fallible human memory and perception is and that I have little hope of telling if someone's lying, or I mentioned they already exposed us to bias by letting us see everyone at the council table. Or perhaps it was just because I was annoying in the way that only someone exposed to far to much philosophy can be.

Though why do they let the jury see the lawyers and defense? Since it's been shown that just changing the names on essays influences the grades those essay receives how can seeing them not bias us?

Not to mention, why are lawyers allowed opening and closing statements? Those are persuasive arguments that almost certainly take advantage of a number of rhetorical tricks to manipulate jurors memories of the presented evidence.

We tend to believe we're less biased than we actually are. We tend to believe what's repeated to us, we tend to believe what supports our previously held beliefs, we will tend to believe our first choice. Also our justifications for our beliefs are sometimes totally fabricated after we've already decided. (as shown here.)

I suppose because I'm aware of at least some of the common fallacies I'm more likely to be able to resist them, but if I assume that not subject to the fallacies I'm almost certainly opening myself to being tricked.

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Comments {5}

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from: aerynvale
date: May. 14th, 2009 02:20 am (UTC)
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Yeah, all of what you mentioned is true, and why they kick people like you off of juries. They want a jury who will make emotional decisions, since both sides want to win. Justice goes by the wayside. :/

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Diane Trout

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from: alienghic
date: May. 14th, 2009 02:38 am (UTC)
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Well to be fair, if you stack a jury with a bunch of scientist-philosophers its not clear how much more accurate they'll be in deciding a case, but is virtually certain it will take much longer for them to reach a conclusion.

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(no subject)

from: aerynvale
date: May. 14th, 2009 02:47 am (UTC)
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This is true, but at least they'd be more likely to apply some critical thinking to the situation. Not guaranteed to happen, but more likely.

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Diane Trout

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from: alienghic
date: May. 14th, 2009 02:57 am (UTC)
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I think its pretty likely they'd apply critical thinking, the question is if the thinking would be about the case or if they'd be busy arguing about what is truth.

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no, YOUR mom

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from: theinfamousmom
date: May. 14th, 2009 04:02 pm (UTC)
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I think the only reason they want you to see all the attorneys and so forth ahead of time is so that you can claim you know one of them and get excused.

I once got booted from a drug case by telling the judge (quite truthfully) about all my alcoholic relatives. Objective on the subject I am not.

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