The Sunday Post for December 6, 2015

Jury Duty

A remarkable story of jury duty, told by a black man. Very honest, very raw. Very anonymous, for obvious reasons.

There are twelve of us left. The first thing the prosecutor did during voir dire was ask all the men of color whether we trusted cops. Every black man had a story: police harassment, spurious arrests, intimidation. They were all eliminated. I was asked if I had any experiences of this kind, and I said no. It was the truth. Perhaps this was the time to mention that having witnessed the murders of Eric Garner and Walter Scott on video made personal experience unnecessary. I didn’t mention it.

In the end, only two men of color make it to the jury, and I am one of them. The other is Latino. There are two Latina women, one African-American woman, and one Asian woman. The remaining six jurors are white.

Brophy’s Behaivor in the Spotlight

What's that you say? I haven't mentioned Iris Murdoch in a few weeks? Time to remedy that! Brigid Brophy was a British novelist who had a very close relationship with Iris Murdoch. Her daughter, Kate Levey, has been exploring this:

In her private notebook, and dated 1961, my mother, Brigid Brophy, wrote

A person whom I adore
Is a novelist whom I abhor
Was ever a woman of literary integrity
In such a fix before?

The subject of Brigid’s ditty was Iris Murdoch. Brigid and Iris loved each other passionately, sexually, seriously, but also fatally. They could not reconcile their different attitudes to the nature of their love; on that topic there were deep rifts in expectation and in ambition. The resultant emotional tumults damaged the pair profoundly. Theirs seemed to Brigid insuperable problems; such they proved to be, thus eventually when Brigid found no remedy, she broke away from Iris.