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The Supreme Court has repeatedly asserted that a defendant is not entitled to a jury composed in whole or in part of persons of his own race. Although these rulings establish that states are not obligated to use racially mixed juries, they do not prohibit states from doing so. In fact, a number of policymakers and legal scholars have proposed reforms that use racial criteria to promote racial diversity on American juries. Some have suggested that the names of majority race jurors be removed from the jury list (thus ensuring a larger proportion of racial minorities); others have suggested that a certain number of seats on each jury be set aside for racial minorities.
- How would you justify these reforms to a state legislature?
- How would an opponent of these reforms respond?
- Overall, are these good ideas or bad ideas?