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Thread: Regaining our rights through education and jury nullification

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    Regular Member Freedom1Man's Avatar
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    Regaining our rights through education and jury nullification

    http://www.thetruthaboutguns.com/201...ng-gun-rights/

    The recent mistrial in the case of U.S. Army Master Sgt. C.J. Grisham shows the lack of education of the Bell County jurors. The mistrial occurred because only one juror of the six understood his rights and responsibilities as a juror. Initially, according to jury member L.J. Cotterill, “we all agreed that the charge itself and the case itself was garbage. This entire matter should have been resolved by two grown men acting like grown men apologizing for their part in a bad situation and buying each other a beer and then going to a range together.” The problem was that the jury didn’t know their rights and power to find “not guilty” if justice demanded it. Let alone their right to ignore a judge’s instructions . . .

    The ability to ignore a judge’s instructions is one of the most important parts of jury duty. It derives directly form English common law and the landmark case of Peter Zenger in 1734. If a jury is bound to follow the judge’s instructions, they become, in effect, nothing more than government employees rather than free people with a duty to hold the government as well as citizens accountable.
    Finally someone is publishing this. This is something I have told people about for years and then they look at me funny and don't realize that this could make jury duty more 'fun'.

    So, would you exercise your right to jury nullification or would you go and find someone guilty over a bad law or bad charges?
    Provision for free medical attendance and nursing, for clothing, for food, for housing, for the education of children, and a hundred other matters, might with equal propriety be proposed as tending to relieve the employee of mental strain and worry. --- These matters obviously lie outside the orbit of congressional power. (Railroad Retirement Board v Alton Railroad)

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    Regular Member Primus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Freedom1Man View Post
    http://www.thetruthaboutguns.com/201...ng-gun-rights/



    Finally someone is publishing this. This is something I have told people about for years and then they look at me funny and don't realize that this could make jury duty more 'fun'.

    So, would you exercise your right to jury nullification or would you go and find someone guilty over a bad law or bad charges?
    Define "bad law or charges". Too vague.

    Your opening up a can of worms. So if I feel that murder is a "bad law" when applied to men killing women, does that mean I should nullify because of that? If it's a law, it's a law. Appeal it, get it reformed, etc. There are already methods in place to deal with "bad law or charges", to have a jury just convict on w/e they want based purely on how they felt is a bad idea.
    Last edited by Primus; 11-09-2013 at 07:33 PM.

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    Regular Member Freedom1Man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Primus View Post
    Define "bad law or charges". Too vague.

    Your opening up a can of worms. So if I feel that murder is a "bad law" when applied to men killing women, does that mean I should nullify because of that? If it's a law, it's a law. Appeal it, get it reformed, etc. There are already methods in place to deal with "bad law or charges", to have a jury just convict on w/e they want based purely on how they felt is a bad idea.
    Laws that are about mala prohibita crimes [sic] are generally bad laws. Laws that are about mala en se crimes are, on the other hand, generally good.
    Last edited by Freedom1Man; 11-09-2013 at 07:38 PM.
    Provision for free medical attendance and nursing, for clothing, for food, for housing, for the education of children, and a hundred other matters, might with equal propriety be proposed as tending to relieve the employee of mental strain and worry. --- These matters obviously lie outside the orbit of congressional power. (Railroad Retirement Board v Alton Railroad)

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    Why can't a person examine the law and see if its just? And if not, nullify it.

    I see nothing wrong with the application of jury nullification.

    Some laws are plain stupid or have penalties that go beyond reasonable.

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    Regular Member Primus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Freedom1Man View Post
    Laws that are about mala prohibita crimes [sic] are generally bad laws. Laws that are about mala en se crimes are, on the other hand, generally good.
    Even you are using the words "generally". So it means that some laws are still good in your opinion.

    You you get 12 people and have 12 different opinions on what's good.

    How about this? You get arrested some 2a violation in NYC, you'd be hanged. It would take away all chance of a fair trial. It would let all kinds of bad things into the court, even more then they are already there. Racial bias, sex bias, law bias, etc. etc. It's already hard enough to get a jury of your "peers", at least you know what their guidelines are and you can defend against it.

    Have a jury that's cool with getting stomped by the .gov or your miranda violated? Your screwed. Have a jury pool that's ok with those "illegal" searches of your posterior? Your screwed.

    MAYBE, just MAYBE, if everyone on a jury panel was actually schooled in Con Law, Crim. Law, Common Law, etc. They aren't and won't be.

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    Regular Member EMNofSeattle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Primus View Post
    Even you are using the words "generally". So it means that some laws are still good in your opinion.

    You you get 12 people and have 12 different opinions on what's good.
    a deflection, there is generally a majority of people who have a good idea what is "good" versus "bad" or even what is a "just" punishment for laws they may agree with. I agree with drug laws, generally, but many sentences are simply too harsh. posession of one ounce of crack can get long jail sentences, even though I agree with that law, I would nullify on the basis of the penalty far outweighing the offense.

    How about this? You get arrested some 2a violation in NYC, you'd be hanged. It would take away all chance of a fair trial. It would let all kinds of bad things into the court, even more then they are already there. Racial bias, sex bias, law bias, etc. etc. It's already hard enough to get a jury of your "peers", at least you know what their guidelines are and you can defend against it.
    there is no crime that will get you hanged anywhere in this country, except for Aggravated 1st degree murder or Treason in the State of Washington, and even then only if you choose.

    bias is screened out during Voir Dire. besides a jury that's so biased against the defendant isn't going to nullify so it's a moot argument anyway.

    Have a jury that's cool with getting stomped by the .gov or your miranda violated? Your screwed. Have a jury pool that's ok with those "illegal" searches of your posterior? Your screwed.
    violation of your rights is dealt with by Motions in Limine before the trial, and will be dealt with by suppression orders and the trial judge. a jury will never hear about your rights being violated, because it's the trial judge's job to exclude that stuff.

    MAYBE, just MAYBE, if everyone on a jury panel was actually schooled in Con Law, Crim. Law, Common Law, etc. They aren't and won't be.
    I have no problem letting a jury do research at the law library about the law in general, so long as they're not reviewing the specific case they're judging.
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    Regular Member Primus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EMNofSeattle View Post
    a deflection, there is generally a majority of people who have a good idea what is "good" versus "bad" or even what is a "just" punishment for laws they may agree with. I agree with drug laws, generally, but many sentences are simply too harsh. posession of one ounce of crack can get long jail sentences, even though I agree with that law, I would nullify on the basis of the penalty far outweighing the offense.



    there is no crime that will get you hanged anywhere in this country, except for Aggravated 1st degree murder or Treason in the State of Washington, and even then only if you choose.

    bias is screened out during Voir Dire. besides a jury that's so biased against the defendant isn't going to nullify so it's a moot argument anyway.



    violation of your rights is dealt with by Motions in Limine before the trial, and will be dealt with by suppression orders and the trial judge. a jury will never hear about your rights being violated, because it's the trial judge's job to exclude that stuff.



    I have no problem letting a jury do research at the law library about the law in general, so long as they're not reviewing the specific case they're judging.


    1) jury doesn't even know or deal with penalties. Judge assignes penalites. So either you agree with a law or you don't.
    2)Hanged was an exageration, i apologize if you missed the sarcasm.
    3)Bias is never "dealt" with. The judge merely tries to eliminate or accept suppression based on the lawyers argument. My premise still stands. If you have ANTI gun people, they will vote ANTI gun. How is that hard to understand?

    I get it, the point is, get a bunch of pro gun guys to nullify on anti gun charges. It may work, yet opens pandoras box for anything else people are ANTI about.

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    Regular Member EMNofSeattle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Primus View Post
    1) jury doesn't even know or deal with penalties. Judge assignes penalites. So either you agree with a law or you don't.
    2)Hanged was an exageration, i apologize if you missed the sarcasm.
    3)Bias is never "dealt" with. The judge merely tries to eliminate or accept suppression based on the lawyers argument. My premise still stands. If you have ANTI gun people, they will vote ANTI gun. How is that hard to understand?

    I get it, the point is, get a bunch of pro gun guys to nullify on anti gun charges. It may work, yet opens pandoras box for anything else people are ANTI about.
    you mean the anti gunners might nullify people who were charged with "violating" a "pro-gun law"?

    how do you get charged with violating a law that either protects a specific mode of conduct or doesn't exist?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Primus View Post
    SNIP I get it, the point is, get a bunch of pro gun guys to nullify on anti gun charges. It may work, yet opens pandoras box for anything else people are ANTI about.
    Oh, for pete's sake. Are we really going to have to listen to years of over-confident, know-it-all garbage from Primus?

    Jeezus kryest!!

    Arguably, jury nullification comes to us from Magna Carta, the idea being for jurors to prevent the king from making and enforcing laws that violated the common law and ancient rights of England.

    For damn sure it was confirmed in the case of one of William Penn's jurors in the 1670's. Penn's jury refused to convict him of preaching Quakerism (in Anglican England). The judges tried to direct the verdict. The jury dug in their heels and were thrown in prison. One juror applied for habeas corpus to a superior court, which granted the writ, and confirmed that jurors could not be held accountable for their verdict.

    Jury nullification is and always has been an integral part of the scheme of checks and balances on government in this country.

    Maybe some people can stop for just a second and wonder that just because they haven't heard of something doesn't mean its existence is influenced by their ignorance.

    Jeezus!!!


    For anyone interested, hunt up Trial by Jury by Lysander Spooner. If you read just the first section, you will know more about it than 98% of the population.
    Last edited by Citizen; 11-09-2013 at 08:49 PM.
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

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    Regular Member Primus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EMNofSeattle View Post
    you mean the anti gunners might nullify people who were charged with "violating" a "pro-gun law"?

    how do you get charged with violating a law that either protects a specific mode of conduct or doesn't exist?
    You can't. I was referring to the Judge's instructions to a jury. Instructions such as Stand Your Ground, Castl Doctrine, etc. If you are charged with murder, you use castle doctrine as a defense, the jury is Anti-guns, they find you guilty even though the Judge clearely explained that you have a right to defend yourself in your home.

    The nullification comes into play when we are victims. So a cop bashes your head in and it goes to court. Well the jury nullfiies because they are pro police and ignore the instructions from the judge on the charges. So the cop goes free.

    Even your "specific mode of carry". Good idea. So let juries decide on a whim if we should open carry. So a guy gets arrested for OCing (happens as we all see). Goes to trial. The judge instructs the jury that there is precedence for OCing to disregard that portion. Guilty.

    I'm treating the nullification and the disregard of instructions as two seperate things. Both can screw people.

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    Regular Member Primus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post
    Oh, for pete's sake. Are we really going to have to listen to years of over-confident, know-it-all garbage from Primus?

    Jeezus kryest!!

    Arguably, jury nullification comes to us from Magna Carta, the idea being for jurors to prevent the king from making and enforcing laws that violated the common law and ancient rights of England.

    For damn sure it was confirmed in the case of one of William Penn's jurors in the 1670's. Penn's jury refused to convict him of preaching Quakerism (in Anglican England). The judges tried to direct the verdict. The jury dug in their heels and were thrown in prison. One juror applied for habeas corpus to a superior court, which granted the writ, and confirmed that jurors could not be held accountable for their verdict.

    Jury nullification is and always has been an integral part of the scheme of checks and balances on government in this country.

    Maybe some people can stop for just a second and wonder that just because they haven't heard of something doesn't mean its existence is influenced by their ignorance.

    Jeezus!!!


    For anyone interested, hunt up Trial by Jury by Lysander Spooner. If you read just the first section, you will know more about it than 98% of the population.
    Are you done? The rest of your post was good and informative. Although again, the OP was clearly posting an article that was showing nullification in a VERY SPECIFIC light. That it could be good for gun guys if we can get juries to nullify in our favor. So take your magna carta and place it somewhere else.

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    http://legal-dictionary.thefreedicti...+nullification

    A sanctioned doctrine of trial proceedings wherein members of a jury disregard either the evidence presented or the instructions of the judge in order to reach a verdict based upon their own consciences. It espouses the concept that jurors should be the judges of both law and fact.

    So like I keep saying.... You shoot someone in your door way protecting your kid and the antis find you guilty because they use their "consciences".

    You OC somewhere and get picked up on bogus charges. The judge or lawyer says "he can open carry look here's the case law". Well the jury says F that, we are judge and jury so we are going to find him guilty.

    Like I said before, it opens a can of worms.

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    Regular Member EMNofSeattle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Primus View Post
    http://legal-dictionary.thefreedicti...+nullification

    A sanctioned doctrine of trial proceedings wherein members of a jury disregard either the evidence presented or the instructions of the judge in order to reach a verdict based upon their own consciences. It espouses the concept that jurors should be the judges of both law and fact.

    So like I keep saying.... You shoot someone in your door way protecting your kid and the antis find you guilty because they use their "consciences".

    You OC somewhere and get picked up on bogus charges. The judge or lawyer says "he can open carry look here's the case law". Well the jury says F that, we are judge and jury so we are going to find him guilty.

    Like I said before, it opens a can of worms.
    no it really doesn't, if charges are obviously unwarranted, ie a judge instructing a jury the law says he was perfectly legal to do what the accused was doing then that judge would've dismissed the charges before it ever saw a jury.

    if you're being prosecuted on a self defense charge likewise the judge can be motioned to dismiss before hand or an interlucatory appeal filed to an intermediate court before charges proceed. also the defense will be able to exclude biased jurors in Voir Dire.

    you seem to understand little about how courts work...
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    Nope. I'd never nullify. I'd follow the judge's instructions to the letter.


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    Regular Member Primus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EMNofSeattle View Post
    no it really doesn't, if charges are obviously unwarranted, ie a judge instructing a jury the law says he was perfectly legal to do what the accused was doing then that judge would've dismissed the charges before it ever saw a jury.

    if you're being prosecuted on a self defense charge likewise the judge can be motioned to dismiss before hand or an interlucatory appeal filed to an intermediate court before charges proceed. also the defense will be able to exclude biased jurors in Voir Dire.

    you seem to understand little about how courts work...
    So why didn't zimmerman get dismissed right out?

    Your implying that judges aren't ANTI.

    Listen I get it , if I say the sky is blue you'll insult me and say no it's a shade of purple and alledge I don't go outside very often.

    My point is if it goes to a jury trial (which they do) and it actually gets to a deliberation, then you have the chance they can just decide on feelings. I posted the requisite cites with definitions. You assume that the case is perfect, that your defense attorney is perfect and files appropriately, you assume that the judge is perfect and not biased. You apparently don't live in the Unite States.

    And for the record, I happen to be in court at least 2-3 times per month. 2-3 times a week during real busy seasons or when things get piled up. I'm not a lawyer and I'm not even smart, but Ive seen juries decide in the face of evidence, never mind encouraging them to disregard evidence.

    Moving on.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Primus View Post
    Define "bad law or charges". Too vague.

    Your opening up a can of worms. So if I feel that murder is a "bad law" when applied to men killing women, does that mean I should nullify because of that? If it's a law, it's a law. Appeal it, get it reformed, etc. There are already methods in place to deal with "bad law or charges", to have a jury just convict on w/e they want based purely on how they felt is a bad idea.
    The jury is the final check and balance against an oppressive government (well, the final non-violent check anyway). They can pass all the crappy laws they want, but if juries refuse to convict then the laws are meaningless. Jurors not only have the right to refuse to convict when they disagree with the law, in my opinion they have the responsibility. All these "crying jurors" ("I'm so sorry I voted guilty, I don't think you did anything wrong, but I had no choice according to the judge's instructions"). A juror always has a choice. Eff the judge's instructions.

    More Americans, especially jurors need to adopt what I call the "or what?" test. If a judge says to you "if you find that the accused has broken the law as I have explained it to you, you must find him guilty", your first question should be "or what?". You don't have to say it out loud - usually asking the question of yourself is sufficient. In this case there is no answer to the "or what?". If you, the juror, find that the accused has broken the law as the judge has explained it to you, and despite the judge's assertion that you "must find him guilty", you decide to vote "not guilty" (for whatever reason), what happens to you? Nothing.

    I'm amazed at the number of otherwise intelligent people that never consider the "or what?" response. I was talking to a good friend about this very topic (jury nullification) and she said "well if a judge told me, as a juror, that if I find x, y, and z that I must find the person guilty, I wouldn't question it and I'd find them guilty". I was appalled and explained that when anybody in a position of authority (or a supposed position of authority) tells you you must do a thing you should always ask yourself "or what?" and go from there.

    I was pleasantly surprised about a year later that same friend was recounting a story where she was filling out some forms for some medical this or that and they gave her a disclosure form they said she had to sign because of some Federal law or other such nonsense. She replied with a polite version of "or what" (something more like "what happens if I don't want to sign it") and they said "oh, well if you don't want to sign it you don't have to", and she didn't. Good girl.
    Last edited by BrianB; 11-09-2013 at 09:32 PM.
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    Regular Member Primus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BrianB View Post
    The jury is the final check and balance against an oppressive government (well, the final non-violent check anyway). They can pass all the crappy laws they want, but if juries refuse to convict then the laws are meaningless. Jurors not only have the right to refuse to convict when they disagree with the law, in my opinion they have the responsibility. All these "crying jurors" ("I'm so sorry I voted guilty, I don't think you did anything wrong, but I had no choice according to the judge's instructions"). A juror always has a choice. Eff the judge's instructions.

    More Americans, especially jurors need to adopt what I call the "or what?" test. If a judge says to you "if you find that the accused has broken the law as I have explained it to you, you must find him guilty", your first question should be "or what?". You don't have to say it out loud - usually asking the question of yourself is sufficient. In this case there is no answer to the "or what?". If you, the juror, find that the accused has broken the law as the judge has explained it to you, and despite the judge's assertion that you "must find him guilty", you decide to vote "not guilty" (for whatever reason), what happens to you? Nothing.

    I'm amazed at the number of otherwise intelligent people that never consider the "or what?" response. I was talking to a good friend about this very topic (jury nullification) and she said "well if a judge told me, as a juror, that if I find x, y, and z that I must find the person guilty, I wouldn't question it and I'd find them guilty". I was appalled and explained that when anybody in a position of authority (or a supposed position of authority) tells you you must do a thing you should always ask yourself "or what?" and go from there.

    I was pleasantly surprised about a year later that same friend was recounting a story where she was filling out some forms for some medical this or that and they gave her a disclosure form they said she had to sign because of some Federal law or other such nonsense. She replied with a polite version of "or what" (something more like "what happens if I don't want to sign it") and they said "oh, well if you don't want to sign it you don't have to", and she didn't. Good girl.
    well said.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Primus View Post
    ...Moving on.
    I want a nickel every time someone posts this on OCDO!


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    Regular Member Primus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eye95 View Post
    I want a nickel every time someone posts this on OCDO!


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    You should demand a rd everytime. I'd owe you a few already.

    And "moving on" is much nicer for me to say then all the things I really think.
    Last edited by Primus; 11-09-2013 at 10:12 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post
    Oh, for pete's sake. Are we really going to have to listen to years of over-confident, know-it-all garbage from Primus?

    Jeezus kryest!!

    Arguably, jury nullification comes to us from Magna Carta, the idea being for jurors to prevent the king from making and enforcing laws that violated the common law and ancient rights of England.

    For damn sure it was confirmed in the case of one of William Penn's jurors in the 1670's. Penn's jury refused to convict him of preaching Quakerism (in Anglican England). The judges tried to direct the verdict. The jury dug in their heels and were thrown in prison. One juror applied for habeas corpus to a superior court, which granted the writ, and confirmed that jurors could not be held accountable for their verdict.

    Jury nullification is and always has been an integral part of the scheme of checks and balances on government in this country.

    Maybe some people can stop for just a second and wonder that just because they haven't heard of something doesn't mean its existence is influenced by their ignorance.

    Jeezus!!!


    For anyone interested, hunt up Trial by Jury by Lysander Spooner. If you read just the first section, you will know more about it than 98% of the population.
    +1

    The statist will always claim "safety", like the claim oh but a murderer will go free.

    The bottom line is we are free to ignore the judges instructions and judge on our conscience, yes this means we get to decide the bad laws as a jury, not the legislature, not the governor, not the judges and not the voters.

    I ordered the book "The Grand Jury" what a great read.
    I am not anti Cop I am just pro Citizen.

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    rights, due to ignorance." (Paraphrased)

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    Quote Originally Posted by sudden valley gunner View Post
    +1

    The statist will always claim "safety", like the claim oh but a murderer will go free.

    The bottom line is we are free to ignore the judges instructions and judge on our conscience, yes this means we get to decide the bad laws as a jury, not the legislature, not the governor, not the judges and not the voters.

    I ordered the book "The Grand Jury" what a great read.
    I hate when you do that.

    Now, I'm all burning up with curiosity.

    Author? Publisher?
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post
    I hate when you do that. Now, I'm all burning up with curiosity. Author? Publisher?
    http://www.amazon.com/The-Grand-Jury.../dp/1605207306

    Publication Date: August 1, 2009 | ISBN-10: 1605207306 | ISBN-13: 978-1605207308
    This classic of jurisprudence, first published in 1906 and difficult to find outside law libraries, remains the authoritative volume on the grand jury system in the United States to this day. Here, GEORGE JOHN EDWARDS (b. 1875) comprehensively examines the concept and practice of the grand jury: • its origin in the institutions of Norman law • early historical cases of interest • the beginnings of secrecy of grand juries • the selection of grand jurors and the composition of a grand jury • the rights and obligations of attorneys facing grand juries • the oaths, powers, and duties of grand juries • how the grand jury transacts business • the relationship of the grand jury to the court • and more.
    Last edited by Nightmare; 11-10-2013 at 09:47 AM.
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    I have a simple rule. I will not vote to convict a person for any alledged crime in which there is not a victim that had their rights tangibly violated by the defendant.

  24. #24
    Regular Member sudden valley gunner's Avatar
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    Dec 2008
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    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post
    I hate when you do that.

    Now, I'm all burning up with curiosity.

    Author? Publisher?
    George J. Edwards. It was a discussion on grand juries here that got me interested in it. Researching I came across a great article by Roger Roots who mentioned it was still to this day the best book on it. Went to look for it, Barnes and Nobles had it for print to order. His references are very extensive, seems like half the book is reference and court cases.
    I am not anti Cop I am just pro Citizen.

    U.S. v. Minker, 350 US 179, at page 187
    "Because of what appears to be a lawful command on the surface, many citizens, because
    of their respect for what only appears to be a law, are cunningly coerced into waiving their
    rights, due to ignorance." (Paraphrased)

  25. #25
    Regular Member sudden valley gunner's Avatar
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    That be the one.
    I am not anti Cop I am just pro Citizen.

    U.S. v. Minker, 350 US 179, at page 187
    "Because of what appears to be a lawful command on the surface, many citizens, because
    of their respect for what only appears to be a law, are cunningly coerced into waiving their
    rights, due to ignorance." (Paraphrased)

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