September 28, 2002
Ending The Mockery
Of The Jury System
"Opponents say the measure would cripple the
legal system." It's high time, after years of the legal system crippling
Our thanks to Dave Nevers, dmnevers@... for sending the
below article to J.A.I.L.
Legal uproar over possible S.D. jury rule
September 23, 2002
BY JOE KAFKA
PIERRE, S.D.--A measure on the South Dakota
ballot this November would allow defendants to tell juries they can disregard a
law if they don't like it--a prospect that has the legal profession
Amendment A would let people accused of crimes argue that a law
should not apply to their circumstances or that it has no merit. The practice is
known as jury nullification.
The proposed amendment to the South Dakota
Constitution was put on the ballot after more than 34,000 signatures were
gathered by a group that includes at least one advocate of legalizing marijuana
use. The idea could also appeal to the libertarian right, tax protesters, gun
owners and abortion foes.
Opponents say the measure would cripple the
''It is very offensive to those of us who believe in the
constitutional form of government and common law,'' said Robert Miller, a former
chief justice of the state Supreme Court.
Miller said the measure may be
''I think it has a lot of appeal for the small segment
of our population that has no trust for government and especially no trust for
courts and lawyers,'' he said.
Jury nullification is not a new concept.
Over the years, juries refused to convict people who harbored runaway slaves
before the Civil War, sold alcohol during Prohibition or resisted the draft
during the Vietnam War.
But according to legal experts, no state has a
statute allowing jury nullification. At least three states--Indiana, Maryland
and Georgia--say in their constitutions that juries can judge both the law and
the facts. But none of those states makes use of the practice, which fell into
disfavor after an 1895 U.S. Supreme Court decision that frowned on jury
Among those who helped get the measure on the ballot in
South Dakota is Bob Newland, a Libertarian candidate for attorney general who
favors marijuana legalization.
Open letter to Robert Miller, a former
chief justice of the state Supreme Court, regarding Amendment A (South
(Quoting Robert Miller, speaking of Amendment
A): ''It is very offensive to those of us who believe in the constitutional form
of government and common law,'' said Robert Miller, a former chief justice of
the state Supreme Court.
Quite the contrary, Mr. Miller. Jury
nullification goes to the heart of
constitutional government and common law.
As many people realize today, we no longer have government based on the
Constitution and common law. That's exactly why this country is headed deeper
and deeper into a totalitarian regime. This fact is self-evident by
the way society has been taken over in America by the usurping force in power,
operating under the guise of government.
Mr. Miller, as a former chief
justice of the state supreme court (I presume of South Dakota), are the people
expected to look to you as a spokesman for constitutional government?
Considering the track record of our court system over the past several years, I
hardly think so. J.A.I.L. (Judicial Accountability Initiative Law) has been
created because we no longer have constitutional government, thanks to the
tyranny coming from our judiciary. From personal experience, I can say that Due
Process of Law no longer exists in practice when seeking redress of grievances
in our courts. I have learned this over a period of eighteen years, dealing with
courts at all levels, both state and federal.
Mr. Miller, you say ''I think it
has a lot of appeal for the small segment of our population that has no trust
for government and especially no trust for courts and lawyers.'' The only
part of that sentence that is NOT true is the word "small." Mr. Miller,
you're going to have to realize the fact that it's quite a LARGE segment of our
population, and growing, that has no trust for government, and especially the
courts and lawyers. There are a number of national organizations that have
developed in recent years that attest to that fact. And the distrust of
government is based on empirical evidence, accumulated over the years by this
LARGE segment of population who have become victims of judicial tyranny.
Mr. Miller, I'm not
referring to mere whining and complaining, but to evidence in writing forming a
clear record for anyone to see of what the courts have done to destroy what the
people hold dear-- our LIBERTY.
Yes, Mr. Miller, instead of the
rhetoric put out by you and others responsible for destroying the American
people, the people have a written record that cannot be refuted of their
destruction at the hands of our judicial system. We have names, dates,
places, material facts and specific references that testify to the truth of the
"long train of abuses and usurpations [that has] reduced [our liberty] under
absolute despotism." (See the Declaration of Independence).
This is not some strange
phenomenon, Mr. Miller. Our founding fathers suspected this despotism would
develop in time and they instructed the people what to do in that event. They
said it is not only the right of the people, but it is their DUTY "to throw off
such government, and to provide new guards for their future security." And
that certainly does not mean "Homeland Security" created and run by the abusers
of our security.
As you say, Mr. Miller "Jury
nullification is not a new concept." However, as you say also, states do
not follow the practice and it has fallen into disfavor by the courts. What
this boils down to is, are the people sovereign and allowed to exercise their
right to judge both the law and the facts, or have the courts usurped the power
of the sovereign people, dictating to them as if they were
The system has coerced a concocted
"slavery" onto the people through fraud and deception which invalidates the
scheme. This country has been founded upon a free people, based on the
Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution. Although it has taken a
long time, the people (now the posterity) have become damaged enough by judicial
tyranny to finally make them realize that, for the sake of survival of freedom,
justice, and liberty, we MUST take steps necessary to enforce our God-given
inherent rights, and restrict government to its rightful purpose as protectors
of our rights rather than destroyers of them as it has become. Amendment A
in South Dakota is one such step.
Yes, Mr. Miller, this has become a war in this country
between the people and the ruling tyrants. We have come full circle from what
the conditions were when the Declaration of Independence was established.
Government, and particularly the final decisionmakers (the judiciary) must be
held accountable directly to the people under constitutional principles. This
must be done through the use of the jury system which must
remain autonomous and independent of government. As Thomas Jefferson stated
"I consider trial by jury as the only anchor yet imagined by man by which a
government can be held to the principles of its constitution."
Juries controlled by prosecutors and judges defeats its
purpose. Juries have become mockeries of the purpose for which they were
established. The people realize that we must put an end to this mockery of the
jury system, and right now, Amendment A is only a start toward that goal.
Mr. Miller, the people are sick and tired of being the brunt of tyrannical
derision-- of insulting, contemptible, and impertinent imitation of truth.
Amendment A in South Dakota is just one means of putting an end to this
insolence. We've had enough!
J.A.I.L. is an acronym for Judicial
Accountability Initiative Law
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"..it does not require a majority to prevail,
but rather an irate, tireless minority keen to set brush fires in people's
minds.." - Samuel Adams
"There are a thousand hacking at the branches of
evil to one who is
striking at the
-- Henry David Thoreau