To start off I want to say that I along with every member of my family believe strongly that we should do our civic duty even if it can be inconvenient at times.  This includes serving on a jury.

This brings me to a letter my 88 (almost8 89) year-old mother received yesterday from the Office of the Jury Commissioner in Montgomery County, MD inquiring as to her eligibility and interest in serving on a jury.  At first when I saw thui letter I thought to myself , you have got to be kidding me.  Then I realized it is the county government we are talking about.  My mother was randomly selected from voter registration records to receive the aformentioned letter and it just seems a waste of time to me.

Here are the instructions in the letter;

If AGE 70 OR OVER, you may elect not to serve.  If you are 70 or over and do not wish to serve, you may disregard questions A through H, enter birth date and sign form on the back.

Pardon me, but since they used voter registration records they already have my mother’s age so why do they need that again?  Also this begs the question of how many juror over 70 does the county actually call to duty?  I don’t see anything inherently wrong with able bodies seniors performing their civic duty, but as we age we naturally lose some of the physical abilities and mental acuity we had when we were younger.  Maybe the county could put a limit of selecting those that were say no more than 80 years old as potential jurors and let anyone older automatically off the hook.

This isn’t all that important in the larger scheme of things but it serves as another example of how bureaucratic the government can be.  Based on this example I would bet that they send plenty of these letters to the deceased since they don’t have any maximum age limit to serve.

I just love the way my taxpayer dollars are put to work.

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