Courtroom One Gavel by Joe Gratz.

photo credit Joe Gratz

Guess what I was today? A jury foreman! I was selected to serve on a criminal DUI case that only lasted for the day but was a fascinating experience. It obviously was a lesson in the Arizona justice system, but more than that, it was quite instructional about the art of active listening. It’s not always easy, especially after lunch. But opinions are formed on the basis of what we hear or don’t hear. And paying close attention for hours on end is not really something that we’re taught to do, or at least taught to do well, even though it’s a crucial skill.

Thought for the day: When you want to opt out of jury duty, as many of us have done at one time or another, consider instead the educational aspects of serving. If you can manage the time, I recommend it. It made me feel smarter and prouder.

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