The judge is a large white man with a large white mustache. He sits under illuminated silver words, “In God We Trust.”
The defendant wears a beautiful pink shirt. He is accused of shooting someone to death on Stuyvesant Ave.
Amazing how quickly potential jurors are divided into given demographics: married, unmarried, children, no children, renting, owning.
When I say I am involved in an organization called Occupy Bushwick the stenographer makes me repeat it twice.
The defendant seems to be staring at me, and I awkwardly catch his eye when I look up. I have no idea if he wants me on his jury. I have no idea where I rank in this game, a single white woman who studies media. I realize it’s strategy, but that pink shirt is damn beautiful.
We file out, we file in. The air is static. Names are read, and none of them are mine. I am surprised by my own relief. I want to leave this room, this windowless room with a male judge and all male council and armed male guards.
Downstairs, another indefinite wait. I am told I will not have to do this again for eight years and given a document stating, “Thank you for your participation and contribution to the delivery of justice.”
In ten weeks I will receive a check for $40.00.