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“Juries have the power to judge the facts of the case as well as the law itself.”
WHO WE ARE:
“Just Us” is a coalition of media and
activists working together to encourage the American public to take up
its civil responsibility to serve as jurors. We recognize that too many
Americans run from their responsibility to serve as jurors. Our goal is
to remind the public of its responsibility to sign up for jury duty.
Once you are on a jury, remember that you have the responsibility to not
only judge the facts of the case but to also judge the law itself. This
process is known as jury nullification.
WHAT IS JURY NULLIFICATION:
You get to vote when you serve on a Grand Jury and you get to vote when you serve on a regular Trial Jury. Big deal? These two votes are much more important than most citizens realize because they permit a juror to nullify bad law, referred to as ‘Jury lawlessness.’ In US vs Dougherty, 473 F 2nd 1130 we read, “Jury lawlessness is the greatest corrective of law in its actual administration. The will of the state at large imposed on a reluctant community, the will of a majority imposed on a vigorous and determined minority, find the same obstacle in the local jury that formerly confronted kings and ministers.” Jefferson said, “I consider trial by jury as the only anchor ever yet imagined by man, by which a government can be held to the principles of its Constitution.”
The honorable Theo. Parsons at the MA convention of 1788 answering concerns that the proposed US Constitution had as yet no Bill of Rights replied: “The people themselves have it in their power effectually to resist usurpation, without being driven to an appeal to arms…Let him be considered as a criminal by the general government, yet only his fellow citizens can convict him; they are his jury, and if they pronounce him innocent, not all the powers of Congress can hurt him; and innocent they certainly will pronounce him if the supposed law he resisted was an act of usurpation.” (2 Elliot’s Debates, 94; Bancroft, History of the Constitution, 267).
This principle was put into action before the Civil War when some who helped slaves escape to freedom were brought to trial having violated the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850. The juries back then knew that the Constitution gave them the right to judge the law as well as the accused person. When jury after jury responded “NOT GUILTY” in spite of the evidence, the judge’s hands were tied; they were thus prevented from assessing penalties! Even the US Supreme Court can not override the ruling of a jury. Congress got the message and the laws were changed.
In the first jury trial before the Supreme Court (Feb of 1794), the Supreme Court judges told the jury, “…it is presumed, that the juries are the best judges of facts; it is, on the other hand, presumed that the courts are the best judges of law. But still both objects are within your power of decision… You have a right to take upon yourselves to judge of both, and to determine the law as well as the fact in controversy.” (State of Georgia vs. Brailsford, et al, 3 Dall.I).
John Jay, the first Chief Justice of the US Supreme Court (1789) summarized it thus, “The jury has a right to judge both the law as well as the fact in controversy.” This was echoed by Oliver Wendell Holmes, US Supreme Court Justice (1902), “The jury has the power to bring a verdict in the teeth of both law and fact” as well as by Harlan F. Stone, 12th Chief Justice, US Supreme Ct. (1941), “The law itself is on trial quite as much as the cause which is to be decided.” US vs Moylan, 4th Circuit Court of Appeals, 1969 instructs, “If the jury feels the law is unjust, we recognize the undisputed power of the jury to acquit, even if its verdict is contrary to the evidence.”
This is a fortunate thing arising from our Founding Fathers’ distrust of any type of government or any of its branches with or without checks and balances. Therefore they made sure that guilt would be decided only by fellow citizens, not by judges, and not by politicians! If the people are the creators of the Constitution, they must also be the enforcers of the law they created. Fortunately, nothing has changed since then, except that most jurors today let themselves be dictated to by the judge or by the attorneys during a trial. Our ignorance here makes it easy to scam us, to get away with lying to us. You see, we have not only the right to judge the accused individual, we have the right to judge the law the individual is accused of breaking! However, “If a juror accepts as the law that which the judge states then that juror has accepted the exercise of absolute authority of a government employee and has surrendered a power and right that once was the citizen’s safeguard of liberty.” (Elliot’s Debates, Bancroft, History of the Constitution, 1788)
Those being the facts of the matter, if jurors are ignorant of their supreme power would a US Attorney remind a Grand Jury about their lawful authority over any US Attorney? No, because a US Attorney cannot prosecute an individual without a Grand Jury indictment. And would a judge admit that jurors can disregard his clear and limiting instructions? Of course not. Instead, the judge will likely accept a motion ‘In Limine’ from the prosecution which denies the accused the right to use the US Constitution in his defense.
Nothing will be said to jurors as to their responsibility to judge the quality of the law. It all becomes a show trial if officials can count on jurors acting like sheeple, like a rubber stamp. Part of the problem is that we are more poorly educated than previous generations in terms of civics, economics, and the philosophies of government – 85% of us believe our rights come from the government!
Samuel Chase signed the Declaration of Independence and served our country well, but he made one mistake which got him impeached. As a US Supreme Court Justice (1796), he told a jury that he would decide the law and the jury would decide the facts. During his impeachment trial, Chase apologized and assured the Senate that he knew that juries also had the right to judge the law as well as the facts of a case. Those statesmen in Congress back then knew that if jurors follow erroneous instructions of a judge, our lawful form of government would be subverted and changed. Then politicians could take over. In 1800, if politicians had written the IRS code to put citizens in bondage, jurors across the land would have trashed that bad law with their votes as unconstitutional (Art.1, Sec.9, Clause 4).
Surprisingly, jurors are beginning to trash bad laws again. Jurors are successfully fighting back and not even the IRS can appeal a ‘not guilty’ jury verdict. The IRS does have the option of intimidating the media in order to keep its defeat out of the news. It could harass, audit and attempt to destroy any reporter who might publish a victory for US taxpayers. So today the public has no idea of the great number of cases which the IRS and other agencies have recently lost. The number grows as citizens get sick and tired of repressive measures moving us toward a one-world government.
It may be hard to believe that the 16th Amendment wasn’t ratified, but 16,000 certified documents collected from all 48 states by 1984 finally proved that to be the case (Google search The Law That Never Was). It may be hard to believe that filing a form 1040 is voluntary for an individual (unless he is a non-resident alien), and that there is no law requiring US citizens to do so, but investigation will prove that true (check: LiveFreeNow.com).
Why are such things so hard to believe? Because for years we’ve been misled by politicians and our (tax supported) public schools. Remember back to when you got your first paycheck years ago. Did you even ask someone whether or not you had to file income taxes? Or was this belief based on assumptions? Oh, we do get in trouble confusing belief with knowledge, no matter how sincere.
One knowledgeable patriot on a jury can educate the others and if need be cast the lone ‘NO’ vote. It is the voters on a jury who must decide if the law is bad or is the defendant bad. If the law is unjust, the jury has the right and duty to protect their fellow American from that bad law – to enforce the Constitution and secure our inalienable rights. In this fashion, a government is controlled by the citizens rather than vice-versa. One voter, on a jury, can hang a jury with a ‘not guilty’ vote. It could be eleven to one for conviction but that one ‘not guilty’ will stop the IRS or any other agency in its tracks. Because of this, America became the first choice of immigrants, the greatest nation on earth in less than two hundred years. Our government remained servant to the people.
The Constitution supersedes all other law and because it is based on Scriptural principles, it is the supreme law of the land. That’s what makes our nation a Republic rather than a Democracy. Thomas Paine said, “A democracy is the vilest form of government there is!” James Madison, Father of the Constitution, said that a democracy would lead to “loss of property rights, contention and chaos.” Our Founding Fathers believed that all democracies rot into ‘mobocracies’ where the majority can cram their will down the throats of minorities. They made sure that the Constitution guaranteed every state a republican form of government (Art.4, Sec.4).
WHO WE ARE NOT:
We are not interested in trying to damage or create chaos in the justice system. In no way do we endorse any juror lying to an officer of the court, colluding with others to sabotage a case, paying jurors to find defendants “not guilty” or failing to accurately judge the facts of a case. The “Just Us” movement rejects any unlawful action by any person or persons involved in any criminal or civil court case. This movement is not an act of civil disobedience, rather it is an act of civil obedience.