Juror 853


reminder to jurors: evidence is anonymized

My dad used to talk about the pre-revolutionary days. Jury duty meant physically sitting in court, yet cases were televised worldwide. Modern justice is more sensible: I can serve on a jury remotely, completely unbiased.

accusation: badthink

A serious accusation. Since the revolution, civil society no longer tolerates intolerance. My visor starts to display the evidence: countless pages of social media comments, credit history, etc. Elsewhere in the club, the band plays on, oblivious to my jury service.

please review evidence

Algorithms highlight the worst offenders. Phone transcripts containing racial slurs. Photos with hints of misogyny. Dirty jokes. Activities going back decades pre-revolution, no longer acceptable to society. Sickening.

please render verdict

I tap thumbs-down: thousands of others vote likewise. This John Doe’s lifetime of uncouth antics made quite a negative impression on my fellow jurors.

verdict: badthinker. mandatory sentence: termination

Somewhere in the country, the defendant stood immobile beneath the spotlight of justice, reading those words. I imagined his reaction as the executioner approached. His look of regret as the cruciform termination device, strapped to his chest, induced cardiac arrest. Then… flatline.

I’m about to return to my friends in the club when an incoming call flashes in my visor. My mother’s distraught face appears.

“Honey… it’s your father.”

Written for Flash! Friday vol. 3-32, where the prompt was to write a dystopian fiction inspired by George Orwell’s iconic novel 1984. Photo: Riot Police. CC2.0 photo by Thomas Hawk.

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