I served on a Criminal Case Jury today. So many people are interested in serving out of curiosity and service etc.. but I found little to no sympathy or empathy for the person we helped to sentence. A Jury of twelve people. Yes, I voted a guilty vote. No I didn’t feel good afterwards. I wanted to cry. I did take the time to look her in the eyes and send her love, then I helped to seal her fate. It made me sick. I wanted to hug her, to take her by the hand and bring her home with me and make her chicken soup and tea, rub her shoulders and feet and talk to her like I do, with caring and sensible advice. I wanted to send her to rehab, and hold her hand throughout. But I couldn’t. Best thing to do was to get her off the streets, cause she was breaking the law and a possible hazard to the public and herself. Her head hung and she was curled up in the chair looking down most of the time. Her hands were curled in her lap, like I’ve seen very very old people do.. or a corps. Like withered bird claws, not even wanting to hang onto a branch anymore. She was most likely my age or younger.. the drugs had aged her. She had teeth missing. If I had it my way I would have held her and gave her a healing. I wish I could have at least done that before she went to her fate.. I never did find out what the sentence was. I was so choked up I didn’t have the gumption to ask the judge what it was… All I could do was look the judge in the eyes and communicate, “Please help her!” So stop complaining about your silly first world problems..don’t complain to me about the store not having your brand of whatever and I won’t complain anymore about covering for the dishwashers lunch at work… I’m so sad, but not as sad as the woman I helped send to jail. At least I can snuggle up with my sweet Craig and watch reruns of Seinfeld and drink my Kombucha… I’m so sad. Whats sadder is that my fellow jury members seemed to act as though this was some prime time TV show. I heard little sympathy only me, the green social worker and the seasoned RN seemed bothered by it. After we made our decision, they started talking about traffic and Portland and cops and the weather.. how lucky we were getting out early to enjoy the warm weather. I asked them to stop laughing. I reminded them we just sealed that womans fate. I reminded them she is a human being and deserves respect and at least some sympathy. I had to school the Jury pool in goodheartedness 101. They agreed and were quiet for about 2 minutes then started laughing and goofing again. I do realize that there was a lot of pressure and some of the laughter was pressure relief, but some of it was just “Thank god this was easy so we an go on about our business..” I am so sad.