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Prof. Ferguson Publishes Article in The Atlantic on Restricting Jury Duty to Citizens

Thursday, May 09, 2013   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Max Rodriguez
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Professor Andrew Ferguson published an article in The Atlantic on the California Assembly passing legislation that for the first time would make non-citizens eligible for jury service. If passed by the State Senate, California would be the only state to decouple citizenship and jury duty.

Ferguson writes, "Of course, many non-citizens would make excellent jurors, just as many actual citizens make poor jurors, but the underlying legal relationships would be significantly affected. This change to non-citizens juries may come, as the history of the jury has always evolved with social norms, but such a change would restructure the current balance of rights and responsibilities in a way that Californians and others should weigh very carefully.


Most importantly, the debate over non-citizen jurors has resulted in new awareness that jury service matters. However the California legislature ultimately decides the issue, the controversy has highlighted a deep-felt sense that jury service goes to the heart of what it means to be an American citizen: It is not patriotism alone, but commitment to the participatory values of democracy. Next time you are asked to serve, wear your juror badge proudly."

Read more in The Atlantic, "Why Restrict Jury Duty to Citizens?"


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