Friday, April 29, 2005

on being impartial

i remember in journalism school we learned all about objectivity in reporting, with me thinking that the truth shall set people free. what i didn't learn until after j-school is that impartiality or objectivity in journalism is somewhat of a mirage, an ideal sought after, but once arrived at, ever-vanishing.

this topic came up in the car with chet as we were driving to work the other day but more in terms of the problem of "open-mindedness" and "tolerance" and "incluvism". san francisco is a hotbed for all of those attributes, but only on the surface. underneath is a different story- more a "i'll be open-minded, tolerant and incluvistic of you if you ascribe to the beliefs and ideals that shape my life." thus making those words' true power moot. i could expound upon this more- please email or post a comment if you'd like to dig deeper with me on this.

today i went to jury duty selection at the criminal courthouse and sat among a mix of interesting characters , the likes of which i probably have very little in common save a zip code within san francisco county. the judge came in and began talking about jury duty and the selection for jurors. she talked about thomas jefferson saying "the right to a trial by jury is more important the right to vote," which sounds pretty big to me. but then she said something that piqued my interest in a pointed way.

"picking the right jury entails finding jurors who's past personal experiences and life beliefs be the right match for this trial. no one is impartial and not getting selected should not be taken personally. there just may be a trial for which you, as a potential juror are better suited."

hmm. interesting that it always comes back to the self.


Post a Comment

<< Home