Thursday, July 21, 2005

Trial by Jury add to the Constitution of the Philippines

Trial by Jury must be added to the Constitution of the Philippines
Trial by Jury, is one form of sovereignty of the people.
Jury is part of the nation responsible for the execution of the laws.
Juries instill the habits of judicial mind into every citizen, and those habits prepare people to be free.
Juries spreads respect for the courts’ decisions and for the idea of right to all.
Juries teach people equity in practice. Each person, when judging a neighbor, thinks that he/she may be judged, especially in civil suits; only a few will ever face criminal trial, but anybody can be sued or have a lawsuit.
Juries teach each individual not to shirk responsibility for his own acts, and without that manly characteristics no political virtue is possible.
Juries invest each citizen with a sort of magisterial office; they make all men feel that they have duties toward society and that they take a share in its government. By making men pay attention to things other than their own affairs, they combat that individual selfishness which is like rust in society.
Juries are effective in shaping a nation’s judgment and increasing its natural rights, its greatest advantage. It is free school, always open and each juror learns his rights, comes into contact with the best educated, most enlightened members of the upper classes, given practical lessons in the law, the advocate’s efforts, the judge’s advice, and the passions of the litigants within his mental grasp. The main reason for the practical intelligence and political good sense of Americans is their long experience with juries in civil cases.
Jury may not be useful to litigants, but it is good for those who have to decide the case. It is the most effective means of popular education at society’s disposal.
In democracies, lawyers and judges are the only aristocratic body that can check the people’s movements. This aristocracy has no physical power but exercises its influence over men’s minds. It follows that civil juries are the main source of its power. In criminal trials, when society is fighting a single man, the jury is apt to look on the judge as the passive instrument of social authority and to mistrust his advice. Criminal cases turn entirely on simple facts easily within the range of common sense. On such ground judge and jury are equals.
In civil suits, the judge appears as a disinterested arbitrator between the litigants’ passions. The jurors feel confidence in him and listen to him with respect, for here his intelligence completely dominates theirs. It is he who unravels the various arguments they find hard to remember and takes them by the hand to guide them through procedural intricacies; it is he who limits their task to the question of fact and tells them what answer to give on questions of law.
Jury in civil cases enables the American bench to make the legal spirit penetrate right down into the lowest ranks of society.
Jury is the most effective way of establishing the people’s rule and most efficient way of teaching them how to rule.
Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America, (1833), 1969 ed., Ch 8 – WHAT TEMPERS THE TYRANNY OF THE MAJORITY IN THE UNITED STATES, pg 273-276

Law & Order here we come, Judge Judy go away!!!

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