Its much better than only haveing a judge. The public shuold be desideing if someone is guilty or not, not a judge whom is often very corrupt and may be very difficult to replace, replacements are often just as corrupt. Elected judges are often very corrupt beacuse the elction system is corrupt. ALL CRIMINAL AND CIVIL CASES HAVE RIGHT TO JURY TRIAL.
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It is good because it is people that come from different backgrounds and have different opinions. The reason why it is so much better than one judge or "professional" jurors is because that isn't fair to the person that is being charged for doing. Yes, the person being charged could have done something super awful and terrible, but sometimes they could have just been at the wrong place at the wrong time. And plus, that one judge could be super bias and just automatically slam his/her little hammer on his/her desk and say "guilty" just because they think so. And that isn't right. Having a jury means fairness to everyone. Even when they might not deserve, it is still right.
Over the centuries, many people have believed that juries in most cases reach a fairer and more just result than would be obtained using a judge alone, as many countries do. Because a jury decides cases after "deliberations," or discussions, among a group of people, the jury's decision is likely to have the input from many different people from different backgrounds, who must as a group, decide what is right
It may be true that the Jury consist of uneducated people but how much of an education do you really need to make a "common sense" decision? People make wise decisions everyday using only basic knowledge and having an understanding of how the world really works. In my opinion, the Jury being randomly selected reduces bias. It is also done this way so that the public can have fear hearing and are allowed to give an opinion of the case and not just by the Judges.
It is less likely that a lawyer would have picked someone who is uneducated. Having freedom of speech, everyone is given an opportunity to give their opinion of what they think is right in a case before them. How often will you find a group of randomly selected people giving a wrong decision? Two heads are better than one.
The history of the trial by jury in the United States is awesome. In 1735 a journalist was arrested for criticizing a public official. Despite the FACT that he criticized the official, the jury REFUSED to say he was guilty. That's because he WASN'T guilty. The prosecution can hoot and holler all day about evidence, but if the law is terrible, there's no way I will vote guilty. That's the proud history of US juries.
The reason that "truth" is a universal and unstoppable defense against slander and libel are evidence of the hidden power of juries: nullification.
A jury is the 4th branch of the government. When the other 3 branches decide that your rights mean nothing, the 4th can decide you're not guilty regardless of the facts. A judge can overturn a decision of guilty, but never a decision of not guilty.
The reason the South was upset prior to the Civil War is that northern states were refusing to convict fugitive slaves despite the Fugitive Slave Act.
What the law says is irrelevant to what the jury decides.
I think that juries should decide to stop convicting people who are "guilty" of smoking marijuana.
The reason that juries are in a rut is because the Supreme Court has upheld the idea that a presiding judge can LIE to the jury- telling them that they must only judge the facts of the case and not the law itself.
POWER TO THE JURY!
Juries are legally illiterate. They don't have any legal education. They don't know the jargon, terminology, procedure of law. They don't have any formal knowledge on evidence used in law. How come they convict or acquit a person? They are LAYMEN in legal field. Judging a person's life by laymen is like curing a disease by a non medical person or like driving a car by a person who has no driving training.
Therefore i don't think it is reliable.
I think juries aren't reliable because they can be hand picked by the lawyers. I think it would be better if they had a standardized test they needed to pass, judging solely on intelligence and understanding logic. They should also need an array of age, race and gender. Lawyers shouldn't be able to pack a jury with a stereotype that will be sympathetic to their clients.
I honestly, think we need to have professional juries. People on juries are just average people, many of which have never studied law. The point of a trial is to prove whether or not something is legal. How can people who don't know what exactly is legal make these decisions? They often choose who they think is right or who they feel bad for, rather than doing the job a jury is supposed to do.
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If you want to judge if someone is guilty of a crime you need someone who has actual knowledge of the law. Having a bunch of people who never have studied it in any way, is the exact opposite.
Also they are somewhat handpicked by the lawyers to make sure they vote in their favor. That is not helpful either. I think it is way better to let a trained judge, who also has more experience in this field.
Also, I believe, most jury members are much more likely to be influenced by the public, the media and if they have any similarities with the victim/ accused, then a trained and experienced judge.