Once Upon a Time, Americans weren't ashamed of showing their Faith. It was displayed proudly as this 1951 film shows.
Once Upon a Time, Americans knew and understood how important their role as a Jury was. It was taught in Civics Class in all our schools. Not any more.
In 2000, the state of Illinois charged a postal worker by the name of Whitey Harrell with tax evasion.
Marcy Brooks found herself in 2000 a juror in the trial of one Whitey Harrell, as portrayed in the movie " America : from Freedom to Fascism" which I reviewed here. She influenced her fellow-jurors to ask the simple question "What law makes the defendant file tax returns?" and when the judge declined to identify one, they acquitted Mr. Harrell of failure to file. The experience has opened to her a new world of understanding and approbation.
Logan County Jury Acquits Harrell
Lincoln - Gaylon "Whitey" Harrell of rural Latham was acquitted by a 12 person jury of the 4 count criminal felony charges of willful failure to file an Illinois State Income Tax form. The actual trial began on Wednesday May 24th in the Logan County Circuit Court room, presided over by Senior Judge David "Slick" Coogan ("Slick is how the judge identifies himself) and closed on Friday after four hours of deliberation when the jury returned with four consecutive "not guilty" verdicts.
"We were in a heated debate" reported one unnamed juror, "but when the court refused, after our specific written request, to furnish us copies of the actual statutes, (that imposed the obligation on the defendant,) it didn't take long for all of us to see that something was wrong with the State's case.
On December 15, 2008, (National Bill Of Rights Day) the state of Illinois put Whitey Harrell on trial again for Willful failure To File. On Wednesday, December 17, 2008, WHITEY HARRELL WAS FOUND GUILTY ON 3 MISDEMENER CHARGES, FOR WILFULFAILURE TO FILE AND IS OUT, ON BOND, ON PERSONAL RECOGNISENSE. HIS SENTENCING WILL BE FEB. 5. This time, there were not any educated jurors in the courtroom.
Listen to Marcy Brooks talk about Mr. Harrell's first trial and her experience as a juror.
The best interview I have seen with Marcy Brooks was done by Aaron Russo in his film Freedom To Fascism.
Isn't it time we start educating those around us and our communities? Fully Informed Jury Association offers all the tools needed to do what our Schools refuse to do today. With 2.2 MILLION non-violent victimless criminals (crimes only because legislators write them) incarcerated today, SOMEONE needs to start paying attention.