Emil Guillermo: I want to be a Trump juror!

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Image via ABC News

Trump jury? It better have at least one Asian American, as we generally get cast as Juror No.1 or Juror No. 9, in many court dramas on TV.

It’s one of our stereotypes.

We will have to wait a few days to see if that happens or if we can even find the perfect Americans for this history-making jury. It would have to be composed of people who never read the news, have never been polarized by the former president, and think trump is a term in the game of bridge. (Dummy is another bridge term, by the way).


But first, the historical aspect of all this should be killing you.

Can you imagine Abe Lincoln heading to a criminal trial—of his own?

Or George Washington?

Or fill in the blank, your favorite president in the glorious 247-year history of America.

Think about it.

A former president, the one-time leader of the free world, trusted with nuclear codes and Kim Jung Un’s private phone number, is being brought to court on 34 counts for allegedly committing a criminal act.

And it’s not just any criminal act, but an act allegedly involving falsifying documents to cover up an embarrassing affair with a porn star, all while his wife and toddler son were at home. The cover-up was necessitated because the then-presidential candidate didn’t want voters to know about his moral gaffes. But the mere mention of hiding pertinent information on a candidate’s character from voters means this act rises to the level of election interference.

This is more than just covering up a porn star fling. It’s concealing information that could possibly sway an election.

So this week is historic. And yet, despite all the media, until you see Donald Trump actually in the courtroom, it doesn’t really sink in.

But maybe it has begun to sink in for Trump, who made headlines on day one for reportedly dozing off at his own trial.

So much for the fitness of a slightly overweight indicted 77-year-old white male bored by his own criminality.


Knowing the probable testimonies, Trump’s best chance to weasel out of this is in jury selection.

He just needs one hold-out to thwart unanimity. The chances are nearly 80 percent that even in democratic New York, there will be one Trump supporter. But would he or she be a rabid MAGA type to the end?

Hundreds of people will go through the process as we get down to 12 jurors and 6 alternates. A questionnaire will probe things like whether the potential juror attended a Trump rally. Answer yes or no, and you’re likely to hear the word “strike,” as in strike that person from the juror pool.

So far after 60 people were viewed on day one, only 9 were picked to be in a final pool. The process will go through hundreds of people to get a pool large enough to get the right jury for this historic trial.

The Trump jury? It’s easier to get into Harvard.


In this case, the perfect juror for Trump is, as I’ve said, a person who is apolitical, doesn’t read the news, and thinks “trump” is a term in the game of bridge.

That’s not a person living under a rock. It is a person who just doesn’t care. Or may not exist. It’s probably the opposite of the kind of juror Trump could stay awake for, namely 12 white female supermodels or beauty pageant contestants who love the color orange.

For me, I want to know if there will be any Asian Americans on the jury.

Or how about Blacks and Hispanics?

I know I would love to be a Trump juror. Could I be fair and impartial? Of course. I’d put aside any bias toward Democrats, or against Republicans, of course, and I would say that under oath. Would I be thinking about all the outrageous things Trump has done like the travel ban as I consider his payments to Stormy Daniels?

Of course not!

I’m a career reporter, I know how to turn off my biases when looking at the facts. Being on a jury isn’t writing an opinion column.

But would the lawyers put someone on like me?

No, of course not.

The attorneys on both sides know how critical jury selection is. They don’t want someone who knows or believes too much.

They want a person who is like an empty glass to fill up with their legal views.

That’s why we’re back to looking for what may be the unattainable; someone doesn’t read the news and thinks “trump“ is a term in bridge.

It’s not like finding a dozen unicorns. But it may take a few days for the real action to start.


Dr. Thelma Reyes of New York makes house calls and came to see me do my show with her whole family. “I’m bringing more,” she told me afterwards.

After she saw me, the doctor pronounced me healthy and called the show “phenomenal.”

That is a tough word for a Filipino person to say.

Dr. Reyes said the show covered “very important issues on target. Keep soaring Emil Amok.”

My one man show “Emil Amok, Lost NPR Host, Wiley Filipino, Vegan Transdad” is part of the New York City Fringe/Under St Marks Theater. Only two more shows left on Friday and Sunday:

But you don’t have to be Ilocano to come to the show. You don’t even have to be in New York.

If you’re in California, Hawaii, or Pangasinan, you can stream it live from home.

Next shows are this Friday, April 19th, at 8:10 pm ET and Sunday, April 21st, 5:20 pm ET. Go amok like Dr. Thelma Reyes.


NOTE: I will talk about this column and other matters on “Emil Amok’s Takeout,” my AAPI micro-talk show. Live @2p Pacific. Livestream on Facebook; my YouTube channel; and Twitter. Catch the recordings on