FORMATTED: OT: Idaho Mom Needs Help - Unbelievable : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

This concerns our right to parent in a manner that we feel is in our childrens' best interests. Our court system needs to be sent a STRONG message on this one.... Ingri ************************************************************

Hello Friends, You may or may not know me personally; my name is Siri Wright. I am the Boise mother going to trial for not leaving my nursing child in order to serve on jury duty. Many people have been helping to share my story so you may have heard some of what has been happening. Here is the rest.

I am the mother of two small children, 4 and 2. My daughter is still nursing. She has never been away from me. We are indeed a unit. My children have never been to daycare and have never had a babysitter. Idaho law provides that " a mother nursing her child shall have jury service postponed until she is no longer nursing the child." (Idaho Code, section 2-209) The jury commissioner, Marji Shepherd, had grudgingly postponed me from jury service and refused to postpone me any longer. On August 28, 1999 I received a call from Marji Shepherd. She said I had to give her a date within the next four months when my daughter would stop nursing and I could serve. I explained, as I had explained our situation to her before, that I was not able to give her a date, but that I would be happy to serve when my children were not so dependant upon my care. She told me that that was unacceptable and assigned me a new jury service date for December.

On December 9, 1999 at 8:00 a.m., I reported, with my children, to the jury commissioner's office. Upon giving the clerk my reporting number, Marji Shepherd stormed out of her office. She snapped, "CHILDREN ARE NOT ALLOWED IN HERE! THIS IS NO PLACE FOR CHILDREN!" I told her I agreed that it was not. I again explained my circumstances. I explained that my daughter was still nursing and could not be separated from me, that my children had never had a babysitter, that I had no daycare and had no money for one, and that I had no family in state. I also explainrd that my husband was away on a mobile job and wasunreachable. She insisted, "THAT'S JUST NOT THE WAY THE WORLD WORKS!" Then she demanded, "YOU TAKE THEM SOMEWHERE AND YOU'D BETTER DO IT FAST BECAUSE THEY'RE ABOUT TO START!" I told her I was not able to do that. She said, "I'M MARKING YOU DOWN AS A NO SHOW!" and then said that she would procede with having me prosecuted for contempt of court. Her hostile tirade finally ended with her saying , "AND DON'T YOU DARE BRING THOSE KIDS WITH YOU TO COURT!"

This was very upsetting to the children and my little boy clung to my leg, actually trembling. At my home on Monday, January 24th at 2:30 p.m. I was served with an order to appear in court. Two deputy marshals served me with a summons and one pointed to the hearing date, Wednesday, January 26, 9:00 a.m. "As you can see", he snickered, "that's comin' right up." (This was not the legal amount of time between service and court. "An order to show cause must be served at least 5 days prior to the date of the hearing." [Idaho Court Rules, Rule 6 ) (2)])

At the court hearing just over a day later, Judge Horton did not dismiss the case as I had hoped. Rather, he chose to take it to trial. I plead not guilty to a charge of criminal contempt. This charge carries a penalty of 3 days in jail and a $100 fine. The attorney was able to get a continuance and I was assigned a trial date of March 13. I feel the charges were not dismissed at the first hearing because the judge, the prosecutor and the jury commissioner intend to make an example of me. I believe the judge has already made up his mind. As it turns out, it was Judge Horton's court in which I was unable to serve on the jury. It seems as if he has taken my inability to serve, personally. I am asking for as many people as possible to join me at the courthouse on Monday, March 13th at 9:00 a.m. I believe who is watching and how many are watching will be what it takes to influence Judge Horton's decision on the day of the trial. I wish I could rely on the fact that the law is on my side. However, since the law has not been followed so far I must rely on silent support at the courthouse on the morning of the trial. I hope that the support of the community and the media coverage (there will be media coverage) will cause the judge to reconsider his position. Perhaps, with many eyes upon him, it would be too costly professionally to convict a mother who has not broken the law. I care for my children at home, myself. That is not illegal. This situation has caused such upheaval in our lives and I don't want any other family to have to go through this ordeal.

This is an important issue not only for nursing mothers but also for single income families, single parents, homeschoolers, and anyone home with children or caring for family members. I wonder how many other people have been put through something like this? If you would kindly forward this letter to two people it would encourage others to show their support and help raise community awareness surrounding this unnecessary injustice.

The trial is Monday, March 13 at 9:00 a.m. The Ada County Courthouse is located at 514 W Jefferson. (just east of the Capitol building on the next block) Judge Horton's court is on the 3rd floor and the courtroom will be posted. This is a show of support; not a protest and no one will be called to testify. Please feel free to contact me if you have and questions or comments, or would like to help further. I'd love to have a copy of any letters or e-mails sent on my behalf.


Siri Wright

-- Sheri (, February 25, 2000


Dear Siri--I always knew they were knotheads down there in our glorious State Capitol, but I thought that the stupidity was mostly centered in the Legislature. Up here in the Panhandle, we think Boise doesn't recognize us as part of the State except as a tax cow; once in a while they throw us a bone, like a road improvement. But this is the first time I have personally heard of them refusing to follow their own laws. I don't know how I can help other than with a kind and supportive word. Please feel free to e-mail me, maybe I can get in touch with a lawyer friend who might know of some advocacy groups that can help you make Idaho obey its own laws. ---Sincerely, Ben Corson

-- Ben Corson (, February 25, 2000.

Noted, and will post locally in my area. As a La Leche League member even years after my youngest weaned herself, I find this an obscenity. Our system of justice should not be built upon ripping children from their mothers.I support a mother and baby's right to remain as a nursing pair without interruption as long as it works for them.

-- Firemouse (, February 25, 2000.

Thanks for the post, Sheri. This is another case of judicial imperialism. Shepherd and Horton should find a use purpose in life like tending sheep or cleaning toilets.

1. Has Siri contacted the ACLU? I'm not sure if Idaho has a chapter. 2. Please post an address so we can write to the judge.

-- John (, February 25, 2000.

To write directly to Siri

-- Sheri (, February 25, 2000.

HELLO!! Is anyone besides myself outraged by this story. What are we doing as a justice system? This is something that should totally disgust and outrage anyone who sees this country going down the tubes by the day. If we don't think the justice system won't chew us up and spit us out, I am sure Siri is just like you and me, patriotic and law abiding. The justice system is on trial, not Siri. We have a spiritual void in our justice system and in this country that is as deep as the Grand Canyon and if there is any proof thatwe are giving God the finger, this is it. To wonder why God is so far away, well this is a good example. We simply insist on doing it our way. I AM ANGRY!!! THIS IS AN OUTRAGE!!!

-- Richard Markland (, February 25, 2000.

go here Get this guy involved, email him. cut to the chase. this guy has more than a little pull and influence on matters like this in Idaho. really. right up his alley, so to speak.

-- worthashot (goahead@send.someemails), February 25, 2000.


-- canthappen (, February 25, 2000.

After reading the book "Defrauding America" by Rodney Stich, I had to take a long walk in a snowstorm to cool my boiling blood down. This is yet another example of judges who think they are untouchable. If this was my wife involved in this situation, I'm scared to think what I might be inclined to do. I think that's why God sees to it that I don't end up in these type of situations! ((Thank You!)) Our judicial system is totally debunked. We all know that politicians are crooked, liars, etc., etc., but I always felt the judicial system was still in pretty good shape. Ha! I think they're worse!

Where does an American citizen go if he is being harassed by the Government? If his/her rights are being trampled? The judicial system is the last bastian of hope for the American people. If this were an isolated example or incident, the trolls who call us "doomers" would have something to carp about...but it's not. It's happening every day all across the country. You probably won't read about it in the newspaper though. Thanks for sharing this story Sheri. I have posted it to a local forum here as well.

Cmdr Don

-- Cmdr Don (, February 25, 2000.

Can anyone get the phone number and/or email address for the Idaho Statesman. Also, what about talk radio shows in the Boise area? Maybe we can raise the awareness level that these jerks are out of line by publicizing it in our own local media. Any article relating to this from the Statesman would be useful.

-- Flash (flash@flash.flash), February 25, 2000.

In civil cases, a summons is merely an invitation to appear. I've had several served to me, and I never appeared and they finally gave up.

I got a jury duty letter and returned it. I wrote on it " Moved to California". Never heard from them again.

The reason I hate the Justice system is because I got royally screwed in a divorce. It was a kangaroo court!

I used to be a good citizen and voted, etc. But not anymore. I also returned a state tax letter with the same message. That was 18 years ago and never heard from them again.

I don't think Siri will be a good citizen anymore either. You only get screwed once and that's it forever. No more mister nice guy. I even stopped paying income tax. I say...screw the Government!!!!!

The government can be totally ruthless when it wants to be and that is most of the time. All a guy can do then is to be ruthless back to them and stop feeding the monster with dollars. They'll never get my dollars again! EVER!!!

-- I hate judges and courts (, February 25, 2000.


I'll e-mail Siri.

Could we also get the court's e-mail address posted here?

She really should contact her local congressional representative. Sometimes, depending upon just what kind of character they have, the local congressman/woman will do wonders.

Has she contacted local La Leche League? That group'll go to bat for her!

She should contact the local Evangelical Churches. Good ones'll help her take a stand --just like they did when they led the civil rights movement.

I see she got the local media. Papers? TV? How about Matt Drudge? World Net Daily?

How did you, Sheri, find out about this? Can you keep us all posted? Or can you tell us what papers or media is covering this?

Thank you. I'll see what I can find out from Siri, although I fear she must have her hands full right now.

-- tim phronesia (, February 25, 2000.

All parenting issues aside, I am livid about this as another example of the judicial tyranny going on in this nation. The concept of "jury duty" is an outrage! Where in Hell does a state garner the authority to conscript people, by force of law, to serve a thoroughly corrupt legal system? In my state, they are using fines and want to add jail time as well for refusing to serve.

BTW...don't lecture me about the Constitution on this issue. A jury of our peers may have been possible 150 years ago, but not today. Jurors should be full time state employees who rotate through various group formations so as to avoid verdict predictability.

The next time your state hands you a jury summons, remember...

"When tyranny is law, revolution is in order."

-- Irving (, February 25, 2000.

I am an active advocate of informed rights & freedom of choice regarding vaccines and vaccine dangers. It came to me on a parents list of people that are for those issues and researching for the truth about vaccines. Sheri

-- Sheri (, February 25, 2000.

I recently appeared for a jury summons, and in the state of Texas, one of the automatic exemptions from jury duty is for people that have children under the age of 10 that would unsupervised while the parent/guardian was serving on a jury. Everyone that claimed that exemption was immediately excused.

Does Idaho not have a similar exemption? This story is a tragedy and another clear indication that our government system is infested by idiots. This woman is being dragged into court because she pissed off another woman by bringing her children into the courthouse. That woman had the authority to either say, "We are sorry, Ms Siri, for making you get your children out and come all the way down here. You may be excused" or spewing the venom that she did and citing Ms Siri in contempt.

I, too, will add my email to the others that have already responded here.

-- LZach (, February 25, 2000.

A clerk cannot order someone to leave a courtroom/courthouse. Only a judge can do that. Nor can a clerk forge court records by marking someone as a no-show when that person is standing right in front of them. Siri would have been better off walking into the courtroom and explaining to the judge that his/her clerk was attempting to violate state law and would the judge please be so kind as to remind the clerk of this fact. This would have placed the judge in the unenviable position of having to rule her 'not-present' him/herself and have it become part of the official proceeding transcripts (court reporters are usually present during jury selection).

The next thing she should have done was call her local ACLU chapter. That is what they are there for after all...


-- TECH32 (TECH32@NOMAIL.CON), February 26, 2000.

I just talked to Siri and she asked me to post this web page here that has been set up by her lawyer in this case, so here it is....

-- Laurie in Idaho (, February 26, 2000.

Thanks Laurie in Idaho - here is the LINK

There is also a forum set up there for you to make comments

Did you know about this case, Laurie, or just look her up in the phone book and call her? What else did she have to say?

-- Sheri (, February 26, 2000.

To those who can make it to the court house March 13, this would be a perfect opportunity to educate others about "jury nullification". Sorry but I can't link to an excellent paper on it. Maybe Tom C. can? We are having our rights violated, because of our own ignorance, if the public is educated, this kind of nonsense will stop. This states attorney shows contempt for the rights of the average citizen, probably because the average citizen is so ignorant to the point of looking stupid( in her veiw).

-- KoFE (your@town.USA), February 26, 2000.

The jury commissioner, Marji Shepherd...sounds a bit snippy to me.

-- Mark Hillyard (, February 26, 2000.

Everybody bring a bunch of FIJA liturature and hand it out on the sidewalk in front of the courthouse.

ref="">FIJA link

ref="">FIJA Link

Whenever you get a jury duty questionare, if you don't want to go tell them you support FIJA and bring a pamplet to show around. Most of the time you will get sent home if you were even called. If you like making stinks then wait till you are sitting on the jury to bring it up.

As much as they whine about uninformed and difficult jurys, they hate people who know whats what AND are anxious to serve. Takes away their perverted power.

-- Just passin through (, February 26, 2000.

Same thing happened to my wife. She wanted a "Dr.'s excuse" but I told her no and advised her to call and say "how much she wanted to do her civic duty and by the way, do they have a discrete place to nurse the baby?" She did just that and the male clerk hesitated and said "Er.. Lady... don't worry about it. We haven't heard from them since. Wm McBride

-- Wm McBride (, February 26, 2000.

Looks like it is time for the Idaho Militia to get involved.

Remind the Black Robed Bastard that Judicial Lawlessness will not be tolerated.

-- Z (Z@Z.Z), February 26, 2000.

By Idaho Milita involvement, I mean that perhaps 100 Militia members could pass out, each day, fliers for the Fully Informed Jury Association on the Court House steps to all entering and exiting that glorified toilet.

Too many for the cops to arrest, basically shut the joint down. Let them know you will "poison" the jury pool until they follow their own laws.

-- Z (Z@Z.Z), February 26, 2000.

From: Y2K, ` la Carte by Dancr (pic), near Monterey, California

It's outrageous how some judges seem to have a psychological need to impress upon the unfortunate people who come before them that they have power over them. A somewhat similar thing happened to me about fifteen years ago, in Minneapolis, when I sought to legally change my name.

My husband and I had agreed, before we got married five years earlier that I would take his name for at least a year, and then if I still didn't like it I would change it. I looked forward to changing it all during that first year, and then, for various reasons, couldn't actually accomplish it for several more. (Some states require someone to live there a while before they will allow a name change, and it took me a while to settle down.)

At that time (maybe still) the state of Minnesota required women to provide a statement from their husbands and former husbands, acknowledging that they are aware of the pending name change, before allowing it to go through. (There was no similar provision in the law for men to inform their wives.) I thought this was outrageous, but did not make an issue of it. Although my husband did not want me to change my name, he was willing to provide such a statement, since he had agreed to do so, several years earlier. Effectively, I needed his permission.

The process also required me to appear in court with two character witnesses who would testify that I was not changing my name for fraudulent reasons. Since the court would not provide me an estimate of the time of the hearing, both of my witnesses had to take all day off work (as did I). At the end of the day they almost managed to shove us onto the next day's agenda, but we protested, and so got to present our case to a disgruntled court.

I knew, in advance, that I was not going to want to take the so-called 'God oath' to be sworn. So, I did a great deal of research about that in the months prior to my court date to ensure that that aspect of my hearing would go off without a hitch. At every step in this process I was led to believe that never had anyone ever indicated a wish to avoid using the 'God oath,' even though there was a provision for it in the state code. I found this very hard to believe. Some clerical workers tried to warn me, as a word to the 'wise', that I should just give up on that whole idea.

When it came my husband's time to testify, he was supposedly only to be asked whether, to his knowledge, my wish to change my name was motivated by fraud. Amazingly, the judge quizzed him for nearly half an hour about our relationship. She wanted to know if he wasn't humiliated that I wanted to change my name. Why couldn't he just refuse? Was there any reason that he knew of, for me to be embarrassed by him? Didn't he realize how much trouble this was going to cause down the road for property ownership, directory listings? What about the embarrassment of our children who would be assumed to be bastards...? On and on and on... clearly well rehearsed, and apparently coached by some kind of anti-name-changing society or something of the sort. I could have avoided all this if I had used someone else as my second witness.

When she got to me it was more of the same. Why would I even dream of doing something that my husband didn't want me to do? Did I have some kind of neurotic need to show off and draw attention to myself? What would I say to my crying children when the other children would tease them? I was taking on a variant of my maternal grandmother's maiden name, and this judge didn't like the name, so she would repeat it in various sing song voices to demonstrate how ridiculous she thought it sounded. I could hardly speak and my eyes welled up with tears. They do again, as I write this. This process turned what was to be for me a proud moment into a nightmare of official humiliation. My husband was mortified. I was afraid he was going to make a scene.

Why? Why? What could she possibly have gained from this? It was sick! A few years later, I saw on the evening news a story about someone else who had changed his name, in the State of Minnesota. The human-interest story was about the fact that he had managed to change his name to something that the reporter thought should not have been allowed. His new name was "Welcome Pleasure Freely." After showing a slice of his life (I think he was roller skating and passing out flowers and breathy good wishes) the reporter stated that she thought he was the first man ever manage his way through the mountain of red tape required to change one's own name. I can certainly believe it.

There was also a huge mountain of paperwork required to adjust my credit cards, social security number, bank accounts, deeds, and other financial instruments. Since it doesn't relate to this thread, I'll not go into detail about all that except to comment that it was a breeze to change all those documents when I wanted to go in the direction of taking a married name. It was only when I wanted to change away from that name that I had trouble. Several of my credit cards canceled my account and somehow the new ones for me got lost in the shuffle, though my husband's arrived safely. Apparently, they thought that I had gotten a divorce and so that I might not have been as good a credit risk. Of course, they never said as much. Ironically, I had a higher income than my husband had at the time.

The moral of the story is, if people don't like you or what they think you stand for, they will go out of their way to throw stumbling blocks into your life. That judge may have had it in for me for any number of reasons. Maybe it was because my other witness was "ethnic." Who can know these things? Sometimes, you're not even aware when you've been done unto.

More power to ya, Siri! Illegitimis non carborundum. (You go girl!)

-- Dancr (addy.available@my.webpage), February 26, 2000.

This is totally insane. What in God's holy name is happening in this country? IMHO, the act of ripping a nursing child from her mother's breast has got to be a crime against humanity. That judge/court should be censured (if that is the correct term and is legally possible).

-- Lurkess (Lurkess@Lurking.XNet), February 26, 2000.

Take a deep breath y'all, and calm down. Siri's story is indeed disturbing -- if it is true. After all, this is Siri's version of what happened, and it may or may not correspond to what actually happened. I'm sure those folks in Idaho have their own recollection of those events. So before jumping on the Idaho legal system, take a step back.

I'm not saying that Siri is lying. I'm saying that we haven't heard the other side of the story nor have we heard an independent verification of what happened. So, I'll ask you to save your outrage for when the story is confirmed.

-- Jiminy Cricket (, February 26, 2000.

Good grief - I've posted Siri's email address; I've posted her website put up by her lawyer - if you go there you can even communicate with her lawyer. People on this list have communicated with her. LINK

-- Sheri (, February 26, 2000.

I'm so grieved at what unnecessary stress this woman is being put through. I nursed all seven of my children. The longest was thirty months, the shortest was eighteen months. They each chose their time to quit. What ignorance to tell her to set a date! Some people cannot handle the smallest allotment of authority, and become small tyrants in their little pond. I was living in southern CA when the last five were born. Several times I received jury summons, and each time my response stating I had nursing and dependent children satisfied them. Never a problem. Idaho often represents itself as one of the last bastions of conservative living. Ha! Somebody with a balanced mind, common sense and adequate authority better squash the megalomaniac court employee's attempt to imitate a concentration camp guard, and issue an apology to this nursing mother... pronto.

Dancr...What you went through was horrible and inexcusable. Normally, I do not link myself with the feminist movement because of what it has seemed to evolve and degenerate into (in my opinion, of course); however, this is truly an issue for women to join together on. It is hypocritical to demand one standard for women and another for men. It was immoral for the judge to treat you in such a degrading fashion. Kudos to you for sticking to your guns! If I want to change my name, and they want to establish for females AND males that no fraud is intended...fine...but it's none of their blankety blank business otherwise. I felt incensed to read about how you were treated. As a woman and an American, I extend my support and sympathy. If you decide to change your name again to something like... Judge 'So and So' is a Big Crock of ****, let me know and I'll try to come and show my support.

Meant facetiously, of course, but I feel pretty steamed about any person having to endure what you did. I was raised in Minnesota, and it's a dark shame that it happened there.

-- Mumsie (, February 26, 2000.

Paging: Siri Wright

One of our members has posted your cry over at our site. Some here may have heard about it. Abundant Living (The KISS, Keeping It Simple and Simplicity, the way I look at it). Siri Wright, your issue is posted in the News area. In the last 4 weeks since we have opened, we have had 112,000+ visits. We hope some of our members will respond.

Here is the site:


-- SANman (, February 26, 2000.

Two summers ago I received a jury duty summons. I composed a letter for my boss to sign, spouting some hogwash about how our company's ability to do business would be irreperably harmed if blah blah blah. I was excused and I've never heard from them since. Anyone can get off jury duty, except here we've got some clerk on a power trip trying to show who's boss. That a judge is letting her get away with it is an outrage.

-- Markus Archus (, February 26, 2000.

It saddens me that so many would want to avoid jury duty. It's a civic obligation as well as a privelege to nullify some pretty invasive and unconstitutional laws.

Serve in the jury if you are called and can spare the time. Do it after you read the files at the site.

You've got to understaand that the jury has the last word in the validity of the law.



-- John R. (, February 27, 2000.

. . .Court documents show Wright was summoned for duty back in June of 1998---the summons was postponed because she was out of town.

She was summoned again in July of 98. Court got a letter from Wright saying she couldnt report because she was still breast feeding her daughter.

The court then asked for doctor's note to verify. A note her attorney feels isn't needed.

"As I read the statute it's not clear the a doctor's note is needed. One is needed for a medical condition and breast feeding is not a medical condition," says Wrights attorney Breck Seiniger.

Jury commissioner Marji Shepherd say breast feeding mothers is listed under medical conditions in the statute. And providing a note is at the discretion of the court.

"The first time you're called we usually ask for a medical letter if you say you are a new mom."

After a year postponement, Wright was summoned again. But, court documents show this time she did not produce a doctors note.

"If your not finished nursing then you need to tell the court your not finished and you need another 2-3 months then we will grant that postponement," says Jury Commissioner Marji Shepherd.

Documents show Wright was asked to provide a letter from a physician so a new postponement date could be set--again no note.

"We don't believe that there is any requirement that she provided a doctor's note that she breast feeds," says Seiniger.

When Wright was summoned for the fifth time she finally showed up at the jury commissioner's office--but with both of her children. They sent home then asked to appear before a judge and to show cause for not showing up--Wright pled not guilty to contempt charges.

Wright is scheduled to appear in court in March. If found guilty she could face up to three days in jail and a 100-dollar fine.

-- more than (meets@the.eye), February 27, 2000.

I sympathize with the mother in this case for not being able to provide child care for her 2 children while she serves jusry duty. I think using the excuse that she is nursing is an outrage. Nursing a 2 year old child?? Most children are weaned off a bottle by then. Were you looking for an excuse not to serve, knowing as soon as your nursing days were over you'd be in jury duty? Time to wean that child.

-- Willo Tree (, February 27, 2000.


I'd agree with you on SOME of your points. It's apparent to me that this woman has used every excuse in the book for not being ABLE to serve, and her latest just happens to be breastfeeding. When asked to provide verification and a request for extension, she ignored the requests.

I can very well understand breastfeeding for as long as the child wishes. Heck...I breastfed two at a time when the older one hadn't yet outgrown the desire before the new one had the need for nutrition. I also worked full-time during this period of my life.

Children at home with no one to care for them while one serves is a circumstance that affects MANY more women than this one. The desire to breastfeed shouldn't even be part of this. Can anyone answer Nadine's question? I remember being queried for jury duty when my children were small. Once they learned that I had children under a certain age, I wasn't queried again until perhaps 2 years ago. That was in Illinois, BTW. My second query was 15 years later in Texas. Does the state in question simply not have enough people to serve UNLESS it takes the mothers of young children?

-- Anita (notgiving@anymore.thingee), February 27, 2000.

Oops. The question I attributed to Nadine was actually one by Lisa Zach.

-- Anita (notgiving@anymore.thingee), February 27, 2000.

And WHO are any of you to tell this woman what is right for her and her child? And what government official has the right. Sorry you are both out of whack, Willo and Anita. Do what you will and allow others to live their lives as they will.

-- Sheri (, February 27, 2000.

I have several comments:

First, no one has the right to tell a nursing mom that she must wean a child of any age. It is up to the mother-child pair to decide when their longtime and loving breastfeeding relationship will end. Many children throughout the world and even here in the USA breastfeed beyond the age of two. It is normal and healthy, but sometimes misunderstood by people.

Second, if I were the mom I would have gone to the doctor or the free health clinic to get someone to cerify I was still nursing the child, if that would have appeased them. But, the bigger question goes beyond the nursing part. I am more upset about them not seeing the importance of the mother-child bond. This mother and child have not be forced into any separation, and should never be forced to do so. Child development professionals will back that up.

Also, many states have provisions to excuse mothers whose children are not in school or a day care situation. Those moms whose children are used to some separation may want to serve on jury duty. I declined when I was asked to serve before all my children were in school fulltime. After they were in school I was then available and happy to serve. I was pleased that both Delaware and Maryland allowed me to do that. Not all states are like Idaho. And, I do hope Idaho becomes more mother-baby friendly.

Hopefully, Siri and her lawyers have contacted La Leche League as they do have good information on Jury Duty and breastfeeding moms. If they have not, they would do well to do so.

I wish Siri, and her family much luck in fighting this injustice. And please know we are behind you, 100% and hope this new awareness helps other mothers (whether breastfeeding or not) avoid having to deal with this! Jann in Baltimore, MD

-- arojann (, February 27, 2000.

For anyone who is interested in learning more about the benefits of EXTENDED NURSING please check ...

I know that nursing a toddler is a concept that many people are not comfortable with, but I would hope that others could at least be respectful of the choices of individual parents for their own families ... and that those who speak harshly against an issue that they are not knowledgable about, would take a few moments to educate themselves on the subject.

Good Luck Siri!


-- ElaineHN (, February 28, 2000.


You said:

And WHO are any of you to tell this woman what is right for her and her child? And what government official has the right. Sorry you are both out of whack, Willo and Anita. Do what you will and allow others to live their lives as they will. --------------------------------------------------------------------

*I* certainly never said ANYTHING about what is RIGHT for this woman and her child. In fact, I specifically made no argument about breastfeeding for as long as the child desires. That's the way *I* handled breastfeeding, and it's the way many others handle it as well.

What YOU'RE missing is that this is but ONE case of THOUSANDS wherein mothers are being asked to serve on a jury who have young children at home who have perhaps never been away from their mother. THIS case made the news, where the others didn't. It reminds me very much of the Stitts family case that was presented on this forum. There are many unanswered questions. You present ONE side of an argument and expect folks to blindly rally in support. I think some better avenues would be to explore WHY this particular state "appears to have" different jury duty standards than others. Why do so many states exempt mothers of small children where this one seems to not? [I haven't personally reviewed the jury standards of the state in question. Have YOU?] If they, indeed, ask mothers of young children to serve, how many others were/are in the same situation? Did others respond with a note that offered an extension? If [at the end of that extension] their children were still nursing, were they offered another extension? Did this mother even respond to the initial query of status? A query of status is sent before a notice to appear.

-- Anita (, February 28, 2000.

From: Y2K, ` la Carte by Dancr (pic), near Monterey, California

They were giving a two month extention with the understanding, apparently that she should accomplish weaning inside that time frame. She was apparently going to have to wedge this into their lives every couple of months, plus a separate doctor's appointment each time (expensive and time consuming -- and what in the world makes this a medical condition), to be yelled at and threatened in front of her children, to the point that the kids are frightened... who cares what the law says about it. It's wrong.

-- Dancr (addy.available@my.webpage), February 28, 2000.

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