You just got called for Jury Duty and you're incredibly excited to do your civic duty and sit on the jury bench for justice! Let’s face it, virtually nobody likes Jury Duty or wants to be called for Jury Duty. Often times we all just try to find convenient excuses why we shouldn’t be called to Jury Duty.
However, did you know that we have the power of Nullification as jurors?
SAMUEL CHASE: "The jury has the right to determine both the law and the facts."
There are 3 forms of Nullification in the United States. The first and most commonly known form of Nullification, is a Governor that refuses to enforce unconstitutional Federal laws, and refuses to allow Federal Agents to enforce said unconstitutional laws.
The Second means of Nullification is that of the Sheriff. The Sheriff is the highest Law Enforcement Officer of the land and answers directly to the People, not even the Governor has authority over the Sheriff. The Sheriff has the authority to hold other Law Enforcement Agencies accountable to the Constitution within their Jurisdiction and to refuse to enforce unconstitutional laws.
The last form of Nullification is that of the Jury. When serving on the Jury, you not only have the authority to judge the allegedly crime to have been committed, you also have the authority to judge the law that is in question. Let’s say for example you are a juror in the case of a red flag law. You have the authority to say that despite evidence showing that the suspect is in direct violation of the law, that the said law is unconstitutional in nature and non-enforceable. The same could be said about any law in question that you reside as a juror. If the Jury sees the law as unjust or unconstitutional, you can rule against the law itself.
ALEXANDER HAMILTON: Jurors should acquit even against the judge’s instruction….”if exercising their judgement with discretion and honesty they have a clear conviction that the charge of the court is wrong.”
JOHN JAY: (1st Chief Justice, U. S. Supreme Court, 1789): “The jury has a right to judge both the law as well as the fact in controversy.”
This is what makes Jury Duty such an important civic duty. It is equally if not more-so important than voting itself in our Republic. Our Founding Fathers included Trial By Jury as a means to keep the Judicial branch in check, as well as a final check and balance against unconstitutional and unjust laws passed by legislation.
THOMAS JEFFERSON: “The new Constitution has secured these [individual rights] in the Executive and Legislative departments: but not in the Judiciary. It should have established trials by the people themselves, that is to say, by jury.”
JOHN ADAMS (Second President of U.S.) (1771) (Quoted in Yale Law Journal 74 (1964): 173): “It is not only his right, but his duty…to find the verdict according to his own best understanding, judgment, and conscience, though in direct opposition to the direction of the court.”
We absolutely must remain eternally vigilant if we are to remain a Free People under our Constitutional Republic. If we do not maintain our Liberties ourselves, our Republican Form of Government will quickly become Despotic in nature. Our Founding Fathers were some of the wisest political and philosophical minds in US History. We would be foolish not to adhere to their wisdom