In the news this week, the state legislature is considering allowing juries who have already convicted somebody of murder (by unanimous verdict, long a state law requirement) to recommend death by LESS THAN a unanimous decision, to allow for the situtation when a couple of jurors simply do not agree with capital punishment and will not impose it no matter how brutal the crime. (And these jurors were not open and honest about their opinions during voir dire / jury selection, otherwise they wouldn't have been allowed on the jury). Since we gun-rights people talk about jury nullification a lot, in the context of citizens simply refusing to convict somebody for violating what we think is an unconstitutional or just plain idiotic gun control law, I was wondering what y'all think about allowing criminal convictions based on a less than unanimous verdict-- maybe 9, 10, or 11 out of 12, instead of all 12 of them voting "guilty"? Here's why I think it might be a good idea. What's the point of allowing legislators to be elected with a bare majority vote, and those legislators passing laws with a bare majority vote, if those laws cannot be enforced against violators if only 9% of the people disagree with the law? Ideally, even those people who disagree with a law would recognize that their side lost and that the law IS the law, which must be followed and enforced, but many people these days figure that it's OK to do whatever they want to push their personal agenda, or they simply can't bring themselves to honor their oath as jurors to uphold the law. Now, however you feel about this, remember it would apply equally to all instances of jury nullification. Gun owners would have less chance of escaping punishment thanks to one or two fellow citizens who were strong Second Amendment supporters. But people of certain races and ethnic backgrounds would stand a greater chance of getting the punishment they deserve, rather than being "given a break" by jurors of the same race or ethnicity who feel a strong kinship for "one of their own." And fewer criminals would escape punishment because one or two idiot jurors (I mean literally stupid and moronic, low IQ, borderline retarded) simply cannot understand the evidence-- they think DNA is a bunch of hocus-pocus, they can't follow a timeline of events, they have no powers of logic or deductive reasoning, etc. It's not like we have a major problem with lots of criminals going free when they are obviously guilty, due to juror nullification. I think it's still rare. But when it DOES happen, it sure is painful to watch. And allowing even a handful of criminals to escape the proper punishment makes our society a bit less safe.