30 Affiliate 1 (2004-2005)

handle is hein.journals/aff30 and id is 1 raw text is: American Bar Association
Young Lawyers Division
321 North Clark Street
Chicago, IL 60610-4714
ISBN: 0360-5485

The newsletter and resource guide for bar leaders nationwide
A Publication of the American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division * http://www.abanet.org/yld

Many will remember im Seward from his days as special   certainly be a man who knows just how to solve the issue
project team member for our Life in the Balance initiative,  or dilemma facing his colleagues. Frtunately, he is always
For those who do not, Jim hails from the Northern Black  willing to voice his opinion at any given moment. Often-
Hills of South Dakota. He and Car have been married for  times there is even someone present who has already
fourteen years and are the proud parents of two sons, Jim -  found the solution and written his congressmen or ex-
my (11), and Max (7).                                   plained it quite clearly to his school board member or dog
In May of this year, Jim joined the ranks of many young  catcher.
lawyers currently serving our country in Afghanistan. He
serves as corporate counsel to his commander and han -
dles legal operational matters and military justice matters
when violations occur He expects to return to his home and
family in May 2005.
The correspondence that follows is one of the many that
Jim has sent to family and friends over the past five months.
Because of its relevance and the impact of his message, we
share it with you. Anyone wishing to send fim a word of thanks
may do so by contacting him at Seward@baf.afgn.amy mil.
He would love hearingfrom you.

t does not seem to matter where in America you call
home. In truck stop coffee shops, small town cafes,
church basements, mini-marts, and grocerystore dels,
the seats begin to fill as the sun rises. Whether it is in Selby,
Viborg, Eureka, Ve rmillion, Kenyon, or Mankato, the
scene is the same. American men, and a few brave women,
across our great land, many like their ancestors before
them, enjoy gathering to discuss the events of the day.
Weather is almost always a lead-in topic. Bill, did you get
any rain out your way last night' That simple statement
can be heard re galdess of location in America, though
some of the listeners may have a hard time actually hearing.
The crowd is usually made up of men with streaks of gray
wisdom in their hair and the weight of time over their
belts. It is not always just the retired folks who gather, but
that tends to be the bulk of each crowd. Pickup trucks,
SUVs, and old Buicks fill the lots as the self-appointed
town assemblymen gather to address the issues facing their
nation, states, and communities.
No matter how complicated the matter, there will most

Regardless of the locale, there is a tradition of finding
one lucky club member to take responsibility for the bill.
The games are almost as varied as the crowds. In Spearfish,
at the renowned Valley Cafe, on Main Street, the unsus-
pecung visitor is often brought into the group's simple
number picking match and can quickly and discreetly be
branded the loser within a few short minutes. I should
know, because I have bought many a time. If you are gath-
erng witnesses to interview on this topic, you can start
with Mark and Jim, seniors, Andy, Bill (H. & T), George,
Harlan, Ed or-you get the picture. The list goes on, as do
the years. When one member moves on there are invari-
ably more eager participants waiting patiently as their hair
begins to gray and their steps slow
In Germany I often witnessed a similar tradition in a lo-
cal pub or sidewalk cafe, either late morning or early after-

noon, maybe over a beer rather than coffee. Similar to
America, the rooms and tables fill with jocularity and
laughter as the group comes together and group members
take turns verbally jabbing one another over politics,
wives, and premature baldness.
As the fifth month of separation from our families has
begun, we have started our own morning coffee club here
at Bagram Air Field [Afghanistan]. With members from
places such as Brookings, Buffalo, Rapid City, Spearfish,
Oral, and Texas, we have come together, without a hitch,
to meld into a wartime social club. Between two of our
hooch's is a concrete pad that we call the veranda. One of
our members, in the dark of night I suspect, scrounged an
old electric wire-spool that doubles as our meeting table.
To add a bit of flare to our tan and brown surroundings
someone procured (I don't ask too many questions) a col-
orful patio umbrella. As we laugh and joke for about thin y
minutes each morning, we are reminded of the places we
call home. We are thankful for the bit of solitude and peace
that envelops us as we enjoy a little coffee and a lot of fel-
lowship. Some mornings are less lively, just like back
home, when one of our regulars is not present. Leave,
missions, and the rare R&R pass takes one of us away on
occasion, and the whole group stumbles for a bit as we
grapple to fill the gap left by our missing comrade. We al-
ways seem to get by somehow.
Without hesitation many mornings the discussion be-
gins with, Get any rain out your way? (Though we all live
within fifty yards of each other and know it didnt rain.)
Given the desert climate we live in, the answer is almost al-
ways, No, not much, how about you. To liven things up,
someone will pronounce lightheartedly that they heard
they got seventeen-hundredths out at the oldJohnson
place on Greenfield Road. Without exception that is al-
most always a ruse. (We have no Greenfield Road!)
To our amazement and surprise, we were blessed with a
rain shower a few days ago. It was the first drop in over
three months and only lasted about two minutes. As you
continued on page 4

We The Jury:
2004-05 YLD Public Service Initiative
By Robert S. Spoja

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.
-Thoas Jefferson
EMach year the Chair of the YLD introduces the Division to his or her Member
Service and Public Service Initiatives. This year, incoming Chair Barrett F
Watson introduced us to his Public Service Initiative, We The Jury. This
project is an outgrowth of a project started by the Texas Young
Lawyers Association and later adapted by the Iowa Young
Lawyers Division. It has been further refined to become this bar
year's Public Service Initiative. This initiative parallels that of
ABA President Robert Grey, Jr.-The American Jury
Initiative'--which seeks to create better justice through better
The goal of We The Jury is to educate high school students
about one of the few remaining opportunities for the average
-  i  f citizen to participate directly in American democracy There are
six learning objectives of the project. First, student partici-
pants will learn about the American jury system, from its roots
through its evolution into the jury as we know it today

Included in this objective is to teach students about how the right to trial by jury
became guaranteed in the Bill of Rights. Second, the project seeks to help stu-
dents understand and appreciate the role the average citizen plays in the judici-
ary through participation on juries. Third, students will learn about voir dire and
the full jury selection process. Fourth, they will learn about the order of trial and
the jury's role therein. Fifth, student participants will view an interactive mock
trial video and participate in deliberations to learn about how juries reach their
verdicts. The sixth and final learning objective is to encourage students to
become more willing and better prepared to serve on juries.
The project consists of a curriculum guide, containing handouts for the stu-
dents and a video containing a project introduction, a mock criminal trial, and a
mock civil trial. The project is designed to be run by the teacher with or without
assistance by lawyers; however, the Division encourages participation by its
members to bring this project to the end-user, the student
During the Fall National Conference in Austin, Texas, Special Project
Coordinator Kendall Butterworth (see page 6) and Vice Coordinator Charles
Eppolito will further acquaint affiliate leaders with the objectives of this project,
as well as its implementation by affiliates throughout the United States. More
information will be available about this project from the ABA/YLD's website and
from the coordinator and vice coordinator. Sif


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