The holdout juror
Life imitated reality television this summer, as the trial of Rod Blagojevich returned the ex-governor to the daily news cycle for what everyone expected was one last hurrah, and the pistachio nuts spokesperson did not fail to entertain as he further exposed the bizarre workings of his seemingly maniacal hubris. Since he’d already been convicted in the court of public opinion, that business about trial by jury was just a rubber-stamp formality. Except, in a scene reminiscent of “12 Angry Men,” one lone juror could not be convinced of guilt on any of the twenty-four counts save one, resulting in a mistrial. For staying true to her conscience, the holdout juror was hunted by a rabid media like she was an escaped serial killer, or Steve Bartman even. Nevertheless, we all learned a couple lessons: one, that if you want our system of justice to work, you have to respect that it won’t always kowtow to your wishes, and two, there ain’t no law against being an idiotic goofball.
Others that were mentioned a few times, amused us or seemed especially weird: “Failed to take the stand after grandstanding over a year for ‘his day in court’ “; “When he ran into me outside of the courthouse and told me that he was going to ‘expose these lies’ ”
Best of Chicago 2010