Gay man gets out of jury duty by arguing he's a second class citizen

Fri. March 11, 2011 5:20 PM by News Staff

jonathan d. lovitz

New York City - Jonathan Lovitz, a gay actor in New York City, got out of jury duty by stating he could not be impartial because he's treated like a second-class citizen.

"Just had an intense day at jury duty," he wrote on his Facebook page. "During voir dire we were asked who would not be impartial. I raised my hand and said 'Since I can't get married or adopt a child in the state of New York, I can't possibly be an impartial judge of a citizen when I am considered a second class one in the eyes of this justice system.'"

It worked. Lovitz was excused.

This week, Lovitz appeared on MSNBC's "News Nation" and spoke with anchor Tamron Hall.

"It was such a spur of the moment thing. I was shaking, trembling. It just came out of me so spontaneously," he said. "I never intended to be an activist. I'm just a young gay man who saw some inequality in the state, in the country.

Lovitz might have started a whole new area of gay activism -- on his Facebook page and on a YouTube interview link, several people said they had or will try the same thing.

"We have certain civic responsibilities, like paying our taxes and serving on juries. and I think everyone is obligated to participate," he said on MSNBC. "But when it's your turn to say how you really feel, you need to say how you really feel."

Incidentally, Lovtiz will soon appear on Logo's new reality show, "The Set-up Squad."