Sunday, August 16, 2009

Rethinking 'America's Unjust Sex Laws'

Yesterday in the grocery store I noticed the cover story on this week's Economist is a feature on "America's Unjust Sex Laws." Doc Berman recently provided links to the two main stories:
I particularly appreciated the observation that "The registry is a gold mine for lazy journalists." Lots of other good stuff here: The whole piece should be a must-read for policymakers. In fact, I wish Governor Perry could have read it before he vetoed legislation this year that would have allowed judges to remove Romeo and Juliet cases from Texas' registry.

Relatedly, Berman also points to a piece by Amir Efrati at the Wall Street Journal titled "Courts Face Growing Battle Over Limits on Ex-Convicts," which places in a national framework recent Texas cases in Judge Rob Junell's Western District court limiting restrictions by federal judges on ex-offenders. Last year the Fifth Circuit struck down Junell's routine practice of requiring that ex-offenders could live with no one but a spouse or family members.

In a similar vein, as discussed earlier this week, such post-conviction restrictions have become an issue in Texas state-level cases, but frequently the strictures the parole board adds the restrictions as a condition of release instead of having them dictated by a judge or jury at sentencing. Federal District Judge Sam Sparks recently said that the Texas Board of Pardons and Parole may have improperly labeled thousands of people "sex offenders," by requiring them to register upon release from prison even though they hadn't been convicted of a sex crime.

It's hard not to conclude upon close examination that our sex-offender statutes are a big mess and the concluding paragraphs to the main Economist article make the case especially strongly that the rest of the world has "no excuse" for following Americans' lead:

There are three main arguments for reform. First, it is unfair to impose harsh penalties for small offences. Perhaps a third of American teenagers have sex before they are legally allowed to, and a staggering number have shared revealing photographs with each other. This is unwise, but hardly a reason for the law to ruin their lives. Second, America’s sex laws often punish not only the offender, but also his family. If a man who once slept with his 15-year-old girlfriend is barred for ever from taking his own children to a playground, those children suffer.

Third, harsh laws often do little to protect the innocent. The police complain that having so many petty sex offenders on registries makes it hard to keep track of the truly dangerous ones. Cash that might be spent on treating sex offenders—which sometimes works—is spent on huge indiscriminate registries. Public registers drive serious offenders underground, which makes them harder to track and more likely to reoffend. And registers give parents a false sense of security: most sex offenders are never even reported, let alone convicted.

It would not be hard to redesign America’s sex laws. Instead of lumping all sex offenders together on the same list for life, states should assess each person individually and include only real threats. Instead of posting everything on the internet, names could be held by the police, who would share them only with those, such as a school, who need to know. Laws that bar sex offenders from living in so many places should be repealed, because there is no evidence that they protect anyone: a predator can always travel. The money that a repeal saves could help pay for monitoring compulsive molesters more intrusively—through ankle bracelets and the like.

In America it may take years to unpick this. However practical and just the case for reform, it must overcome political cowardice, the tabloid media and parents’ understandable fears. Other countries, though, have no excuse for committing the same error. Sensible sex laws are better than vengeful ones.

46 comments:

Boyness said...

We, the people, live in an Orwellian society when it comes to our definition of what a pervert truly is. In our quest to criminalize EVERYTHING under the guise of "public safety" we have now created a class of criminal who will never work, live, recreate or enjoy any real freedoms EVER again. The Sex Offender is the one criminal who will truly serve a life sentence regardless of the term in imprisonment.

Anonymous said...

In China, male children are a priority. As a result of modern science, female embryos are identified and aborted. Eventually this practice will result in no women to have babies and there will be no male children.

In the U.S., when sex is a crime, we'll end up with the same result even faster. Sex is a normal part of life, if criminalizing sex is an effective approach to protecting public safety, we will "safely" extinguish our population.

Both Chinese and Americans really have to ask ourselves if this is what we really want.

Anonymous said...

As with so many criminal laws -- we try to solve social problems with ineffective or counterproductive criminal justice policy. This approach has been driven by quick fixes to complex problems. It would be a big improvement if we could begin to use evidence rather than ideological beliefs to guide policy responses.

We over use criminal sanctions at almost every level -- it has become the American panacea.

Charles said...

I'm not sure if Texas has "one size fits all" sex offender laws, but I have long argued against boys being labelled as sex offenders for life--and Boyness is right, it is a life sentence--for having consensual sex with a chronologically slightly younger girl who may be older than the boy in terms of physical and emotional development. I warned my HS senior grandsons repeatedly about those HS freshman girls!

Anonymous said...

we have now created a class of criminal who will never work, live, recreate or enjoy any real freedoms EVER again.

Yawn... Another dramatic statement that is not true. Go talk to these people, a lot of them are working.

Anonymous said...

In the U.S., when sex is a crime

Ok, show me the "you can't have sex" statute.

Anonymous said...

but I have long argued against boys being labelled as sex offenders for life--

I'm not sure what your definition of "label" is. I think I have a right to know if someone is a sex offender, or if they have any felony conviction for that matter.

Even if there wasn't a government registry, the private sector would set one up anyway. There are websites where you can do background checks on people, many of them aren't even based in the US. We should oppose censorship and allow the free flow of information.

Anonymous said...

8:23 you obviously do not have a clue and I don't believe that you have many friends on the registry. Being on the registry makes it next to impossible to get a job that pays enough to take of your family and yes there are many on the registry that have families.

Anonymous said...

8:30 I would like to know what your defintion of a sex offender is? Maybe then we could tell you how much you really know or don't know about sex offenses and the registry.

Anonymous said...

Charles, in Texas it is most definitely a one size fits all propaganda state when it come to sex offenses. You can't have sex when you are 14,15, 16, but you can buy condoms and get birth control from planned parenthood at this age. I see 13,14 15 and 16 year old girls many times in the e.r. where I work that are pregnant. By law them being pregnant is sexual assault and is never reported. Can you imagine how many more young men would be in prison if all these cases were reported. You can get pregnant at this age and noone thinks too much about it, but the young man who is the father could go to prison and never see his child,no child support which means state assistance and more welfare for the mother and child. These are the types of laws that need to be reformed.
Remember Elvis Presley would have been a sex offender according to todays laws. Well maybe not, he could but his way out. Miley Cyrus (16) year old, dating a 20 year old and no questions are ever brought about their relationship. In Texas it would be illegal if they were having sex, touching, or any type of sexually gratifying activity. Texas is adding 100 people a week to the registry and a lot of them are consensual cases between boyfriend and girlfriend.

Anonymous said...

I meant to say that Elvis could buy his way out, not but. That might get you on the list for sure.
jk

Anonymous said...

In Texas most 18 yr old boys are required to register for life for consensual teen sex and the Mayor of Poteet with 2 assaults on minor victims is only required to register for 20 years while other politicians or elected police officers don't even have charges filed. The registry is a punitive measure not prevention. Do you really feel safer with the registry? How foolish society has become.

Anonymous said...

In California 80% of prison inmates will be paroled,about 70% of parolees will reoffend and return to prison. Yet recidivism of sex offenders is only around 3%. I feel safer living around sex offenders who have completed their sentences and treatment, than murderers, drug dealers and other inmates who have no treatment. Yet there is no registry for those crimes. The registry is a money making machine for law enforcement. Use it for truly dangerous predators not teenagers.

Anonymous said...

When all but 12 elected Texas Representatives and 100% of Texas Senators crafted and passed a bill that would keep some teens off the sex offender registry this last session and Governor Perry had an opportunity to intelligently make it a law, HE FAILED. Perry is NOT GOVERNING FOR TEXANS. Perry as usual failed to right a wrong. NOW IT IS TIME TO VOTE PERRY OUT AND ELECT A GOVERNOR WHO WILL FOLLOW THE PEOPLE'S WISHES.

Anonymous said...

10:28:00,

I said it was possible for sex offenders to work, not that they would live high on the hog.

bobt3130 said...

Scot makes sense. If we took the rediculous registrations off and put other registration restrictions according to the degree of the chance of reoffending the resources could be better used to protect the public from the people we know need to be monitored. Too many people are being punished that do not need to be. The system needs to be reworked.

Anonymous said...

Its just a matter of time. One of these politians family members will end up on this registry. Then the laws will change!! Of course they have the money to fight it now. It will take their politcal foe to use it as the tool to destroy their reeletion. Then they will come out against these unjust laws.

Anonymous said...

Scott a couple of your suggestions are so logical that probably dooms them from consideration. Using assessments to determine who poses a real threat and your suggestion that many of the offenders not be on a public registry makes sense. Making those changes might result in less revenue for some in the "sex offender industry" so any of your changes will face oppostion.

Cynnie said...

Good insights, shame that those who really need to read and respond are ignoring the obvious to garner votes.
I pray that the lawmakers will heed the proverb that states that " fear of man will prove to be a snare". Keep up the good work!

Paul From TX said...

How many ANONYMOUS's are there on this blog? It's difficult to respond when everyone seems to share the same name. However, I would like to try to address the ANONYMOUS who was picking apart the comments from Boyness and Charles. Your opinions quite obviously stem from a lack of real understanding about the issues. It's a lazy man or woman who forms their opinions solely on what they read in the news media, which is where such drivel usually originates. Had he ever truly seen what an 'offender' has to do and the impact it has on him or her, as well as family, friends, employers, ad infinitum, he might form a more reasoned opinion. Instead, let's use a broad brush to paint all 'offenders' the same color. I agree that there are some who should register for life. Some should probably be locked up for life, never to see the light of day again. But they form a minority of those on the registry. And the truth is that, as big as it is, the registry doesn't report the vast majority of offenders because the offense occurs within families where either a parent is the perpitrator or doesn't recognize the warning signs, or the family doesn't report it because they don't want the embarrasment or the friction it will cause. Living in Texas, I am witness to the unbelievable atrocities heaped upon children who got too curious for their own good and got into some sexual ecploration or got into 'sexting' or online chatting with too-young girls. It doesn't matter that the girls were willing participants. As far as the DAs and courts are concerned, a girl under 17 is too young to consent to sex. She can be tried as an adult for other crimes, but is largely exempt from consideration in these cases.

Reform is needed. The laws we have now are not only ineffective but actually exacerbate the problem because of the conditions under which they must live. An offender on deferred adjudication has such excessively stringent conditions that they are almost sure to slip up on something as mundane as driving through a school zone or going to church and having a child whom he's known for years (male or female, by the way), come up and give him a hug. I don't have time to go into the laundry list of restrictions, but they are only part of the problem. Many times these offenders lose the jobs they have. The cost of being on probation can't be covered by working at a fast food place for minimum wage. The offenders shoulder the burden of paying for urine tests, polygraphs, counseling, supervision fees, GPS monitoring, and others. They even have to pay for the PSA the cities print in the local papers "warning" the community that there is a deviant in the neighborhood. The supervision process and the associated counseling are designed to completely demoralize the offender and destroy any self-confidence they might have left. And don't try to explain why the offense happened because that's a "criminal thinking error" and those can result in revocation of probation and send him straight to jail.

Pardon my ranting, but my family has seen first-hand the things of which I speak. My son is now in a state prison because he made some mistakes on his 'Conditions of Probation'. We hope he will be paroled soon, but that's up to the parole board.

Anonymous said...

I agree with the other poster than I feel much more safe living with or near a former sex offender because I know the stats. What I don't feel safe living nearby for my children are drug dealers and drunk drivers who don't have that horrific label. And whoever said it was a regulatory law and not punitive, finally need to re-evaluate what is happening to anyone on the registry. I've seen it myself. (no I'm not a sex offender, I am a mother of two children).

There is a HUGE difference between a child molestor or rapist (very rare) and a young man who had consensual behavior with a teenager - HUGE. Yet Texas (and other states) continue to punish these young men (and teens and some children age 10, 11 and 12) for consensual behavior or "playing doctor". Man oh man, I'd have put probably 15 young men in their 20's on the registry all by myself because I was kissing them when I was a freshman and all the guys I dated were age 18 and over! I had no idea KISSING is now illegal! (and it was MY choice, the guys never forced me to kiss em!)

Anonymous said...

My husband is 8 years older than I am. I won't tell the cops. The state would probably come after him. The county would see him as quick easy conviction and money for the county as well. WOW, I am already scared that my husband of 32 years could be put on the registry for marrying me. There are many on the registry that are married to the young ladies they were incarcerated for after having sex with them. DO YOU GET IT, DO YOU UNDERSTAND YET?

Anonymous said...

Paul from Texas, I TOTALLY agree with you thoughts, and I can feel your pain, anger and frustration on our "wonderful state of TEXAS SEX OFFENDER LAWS". I have a "now" 21 yr old son, that had a "girlfriend" 3 YEARS AGO...who by all means stated and acted like a 17 yr old Senior in HIGH SCHOOL. Was allowed to stay out late on dates to 1-2am. Would attend our family functions, go to church with us, dinner at our home.. "THEIR" plans(my son & her) were to move in together as soon as she graduated and start college and work, then get married. I felt NO NEED to get more involved with her at that point. I was told by her that she was 17yrs old and her grads in school were great.. She comes clean with my son that she is "actually 15 yrs old and NOY 17 yrs old"! My son BREAKS UP with her and moves on to the "next OLDER 21 yr old GIRLFRIEND" The "EX" then claims she is 4 months pregnant and that its from my son. He breaks up with the OLDER girl and proposes to the young girl and prepares on how to tell her mother. (I am still un aware that there was an AGE CHANGE) I am leaving these 2 kids who thought they knew what they were doing try to handle the situation, as I am very sadden at the situation. Once the girls mother finds out, she takes her to Dr for an appt to get a supposed abortion.. The Dr tells her that SHE ISNT PREGNANT!!!!!! BY now, the mother, who played stupid that she was unaware of her daughter lying to my son about her age, BUT KNEW MY SONS AGE! Has now involved authorites... We are having the dreadful pain.. of dealing with a now young man, who has NUMEROUS STIPULATIONS on DEFERRED PROBATION, registred sex offender, had to get special permission just to be allowed in OUR home with his younger siblings. Can't find a job.. The system has let us all down on the SEX OFFENDER LAWS.. as to treating them ALL THE SAME... CONSENSUAL SEX IS NOT THE SAME AS A SEXUAL MOLESTOR OR RAPIST...
ugh!!!
Signed,
Mother of a RSO...

Legal said...

I completely agree with the registry being revamped. I do agree that anyone who RAPED someone or Molested a child should be on a registry of some sort. What I do not agree with are these Romeo & Juliet cases, police entrapping people on the internet and making the men register just because they talked dirty to the policeman posing as a teen girl, someone who has downloaded a few kid porn pics (dont like someone who downloads thousands, that is a different issue) or the guys who have been forced to register for mooning someone or streaking at a soccer game.

I dont agree with those people having to register and I personally know of many who have been forced on the website in Texas for those very reasons.

It is a fact that Elvis, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Ben Franklin, Herbert Hoover, George Custer, Jeb Stuart and others would be sex offenders today for various things. Lets just ignore that Mr./Ms. Politician. Lets ignore the fact that for your personal gain, you have made laws that strung up many people who had very productive lives and promising futures. Just because you could get votes and keep your job when you could not get a job in the real world.

Another fact is this, governments who over step their boundaries and contol the lives of their people - FAIL!!! Two examples: Nazi Germany & Communist Russia. People are free spirited by nature, we are sexual by nature and when you restrict their lives under outrageous laws, you get revolutions. Look at the original colonies.

I do not profess a revolution, but the law makers need to listen to reason and do the right thing. In regards to the registry, the police should keep the information needed and anyone with any real concern could go to any police station and pay a fee, maybe $25.00 to get a list of people living within a certain distance from them who have been convicted of ANY serious crime where they are a threat to society.

NOW, that would generate revenue for the local police agencies instead of them being drained by keeping tabs on offenders who are not a threat to anyone. Free up resources in one area and generate money in another area all at the same time.

This country was founded on basic principles, one of which was that once a person paid their debt to society, their rights were restored and they were forgiven. So how is it that our politicins have ignored the very constitution they pledged to protect? Especially for personal gain. Dont tell me that many laws are not enacted for personal political gain - look around. That my friend is called political corruption.

One last thing on this registry. The registry was founded on the premise of a little girl who was tragically abducted, molested and murdered in Texas. However, the very outcry was false. The man strung up for the crime was later found innocent by DNA, yet you have not heard ONE politician admit the registries are flawed, especially the Senator Shapiro who championed it all and made her career on sex laws. Interesting tid bit, her husband is a defense attorney specializing in sex crimes. Her son defends them too. Go figure.

Sorry for the rant, I just feel like the punishment should fit the crime and if noone has been physically harmed, how is it a crime? Next will be a crime to laugh at a mooner and get slapped on the registry because you think it is funny and you may pose a sexual threat.

Anonymous said...

wooohooo legal, you have said a mouthful. I am all for revolution, but then I like confrontation. My son is also on the registry for having consensual sex with a 15 year old girl. My son was the second young man filed on by this mother for having sex with her daughter. When I began standing up against the idiotic restrictions and treatment providers they revoked my son and sent him to prison. The treatment provider (nazi commadant) told my son that "he should disassociate hisself from his mothers way of thinking" The probation officer would call me on the phone and attempt to intimidate me about various issues I had with them, it did not work, I don't intimidate easily. Now my son is in prison because treatment provider (nazi commadant) decided that he was not progressing fast enough. The probation officer recommended 20 years in prison for my son, he got 5. Why should you get any prsiontime for having consensual sex with a young lady who has filed on another young man.
These laws are devastating to families and must be changed. We are waiting on a politician who has the balls to start the process. I honestly don't think that there are any out there.

Anonymous said...

http://www.salem-news.com/articles/august182006/silly_sex_laws_81806.php

Here's another example of how out-of-hand these laws are. Three separate incidents of married couples. Men on the registry and can't see own children.

Anonymous said...

I just wanted to state for the record to the person who left the cavalier comment..."Oh brother, most of them work anyway." Yes, i work, and i am one of them. And everyday i wish that i would die. There is such an incredible crushing force on me that i cannot think of anything i would rather do than just vanish. There is no better world, and people like you remind me that it is probably not going to get any better in my lifetime. This world and your laws...you can have it. It's a cess pool.

Anonymous said...

2:12 I am not in your shoes per se. My son is on the registry as well. He is in prison now and he has told me many times about his thought of ending his life. I pray that will never happen. Most people don't have any understanding what it is you are going through. It is truly a life of punishment. Please check out tx voices.com if you can. If you can't have internet access have a family member or friend do it for you. Please get in touch with us as we are feverishly working for a change. I will add you to my prayer list. I am sorry that you are caught up in this mess. I don't know your story, but I believe that everyone deserves a second chance.

daysofrage said...

Protect our youth from government

daysofrage said...

It has come the time to stop the
violations committed by the state
against young people,they are in thier own way molesting our children.Gov. Perry probably never
looked at the bill he vetoed, he must have had an appointment with his hairdresser.Having KIDS put on the registry is a sick and twisted
violation of thier rights. Once on the registry, thier lives are destroyed and many family members
must also suffer from the consequences.Local newspapers then do there part in this witch hunt by
printing out who the sex offenders
are, then everyone in thier school
knows what they are.The burden is to harsh, and they drop out, they
detach themselves from society and many go down the wrong road.Texas
leave our kids alone.How dare they deny them of thier fundamental right to a education.Perry is no better then George Bush who in 1998
signed a bill for harsher penalties
for juvenile offenders, in the years that followed more children
were assaulted and molested in the
Texas Youth Commission then anywhere else.Does this make him a serial child molester.They want to brand these KIDS as sex offenders,
which is a lifetime sentence for many,some commit suicide and others could care less if they live or die.They take a look at thier lives and realize there is nothing left.Writing polite and
respectful letters to our legislaters is not working,a more radical approach is what's needed,
Perry has shown that.Those in our government need to be held accountable for all the damage that
has been done to our children.When
they put KIDS ON THE REGISTRY,some
as young as 10,11,12 is just plain sick.We must do whatever it takes
to protect our children from some of the most unjust laws since public hanging.For many a noose has
already been put around thier necks....

Anonymous said...

I am the sister to a register sex offender as well as the daughter to a mother who's already written. It's not only the "sex offenders" that are punished. I am so hurt that my 21 yr old little brother cannot attend my birthday party. Cannot go with me to watch our little sister at a school event. These consensual "Romeo & Juliet" situations should be classified different, if not at all. It's so sad that I will not even be allowed by OUR GREAT STATE of TEXAS LAWS to let my little brother babysit my kids, or even stay the night at my apartment. Due to he's not allowed at apartment complexes. No, he's not allowed to go and swimming to cool off from our Texas heat. Or is he even allowed to enjoy a movie at the theatre. Someone please tell me, why this is fair. My little brother is not allowed to experience life, because of a consensual Juliet (lying about her age.)

Anonymous said...

I want to know why is it ok that these public people, (miley and her bf, michael jackson, r kelly, elvis presley, etc.) can constantly get away with underage dating however, the young men who this happens to have to live with this for the rest of their life. Then why do these young women who lie and manipulate men into these situations get no punishment? tell me why this is justified... these women who lie about their age get completely off, and get to contiue their lives, however our boys are either in prison, or living life as a sex offender. How is this fair if we are all supposed to be created equal.

Anonymous said...

What can we do? We can talk and not be afraid to tell people about our sons, grandsons, brothers, nephews. Stand up, hand out brochures. I have many brochures printed that explain how these laws work. They are for educating the public. You can reach me through txvoices.com My name is Cathy and I am ready to see change, no matter what it takes to get there. These young men and their families have nothing to be ashamed of except how Hairspray Perry and our legislators have treated them and their families. It is crazy to think that a father who had sex with his (now) wife cannot be a part of his childrens lives. There are so many young men that the government PROHIBITS THEM FROM BEING A FATHER. My son is one of those young men. He has never been allowed to TOUCH, HOLD, KISS OR HUG HIS OWN SON. HIS SON( MY GRANDSON, HE IS 11 mos old ) HAD SURGERY TODAY AND MY SON IS NOT ALLOWED TO HELP HIS EX WIFE IN ANY WAY. What kind of idiotic sense does this make? I wish I knew how many legislators had sex with their high school sweethearts and maybe one night stands? OMG you mean they could be sex offenders too along with Elvis Presley and others.

Anonymous said...

Charles Said:
"I'm not sure if Texas has "one size fits all" sex offender laws,"

Yes we do have the one size fits all category. Most sex offenses here are life registry offenses. There is language in the law that was never funded, only a ploy to satiate the TX ACLU, who haven;t done anything for rSO's anyways.

Anon 8:23 wrote:
"Yawn... Another dramatic statement that is not true. Go talk to these people, a lot of them are working."

Really? are you sure. Most rSO's work far below their pay grade in society, and with ever changing laws, the refusal of governmental powers to allow access to licensing for ANY jobs, and now their attack on Internet access, phone services, and online identifiers they are working at getting what few of us that ARE working at our education level to be un-employed. So don;t talk through your ass you shill, get educated or get lost.

Someone else stated that if it were the politican's children going on the registry they would change the law. Actually no they don;t. e have already seen where Pliticans themselves should have been tried and convicted of sexually deviant behavior. mark Foley (one of the authors of Adam Walsh act) Readily stated that he carried on sexually deviant behaviors with the underaged page in Washington. yet what happened? he resigned and is now living the good life in Florida.

As for those that way that when someone gets put on Probation the rules and stipulations are hard to live by.. Try living OFF PAPER and STILL having the fucking gestapo come to your house 4 times a year, and not be able to watch your kids in a school play.

Registries are wrong, and for the person that stated that they have the right to know about the records of others, I say Ok, would you please submit your criminal history to Scott so he can publish your picture and info on the web so that people can egg your house and throw shit over your fence to kill your pets?

I think there should be a life sentence if you are elected a politician.. a very SHORT life sentence...

Anonymous said...

I am a registered offender. My offense was ten years ago. The only thing so far as i can tell that the registry has done for me was to get me humiliated and thrown off campus when i tried to better myself. The head of the community college district police called to issue something like an apology, but never actually said he was sorry, and i will never go back there because i hate those bastards and won't give them the satisfaction of laughing at me. I have been harassed by neighbors and told not to return to apartment complexes where i was just visiting someone. But i do take some personal comfort in one thing. When all you people who think this treatment is ok eventually lose all your liberties too, I will be there laughing and shooting the finger at all of you. Put that in your pipe and smoke it.

Anonymous said...

Really? are you sure. Most rSO's work far below their pay grade in society, and with ever changing laws, the refusal of governmental powers to allow access to licensing for ANY jobs, and now their attack on Internet access, phone services, and online identifiers they are working at getting what few of us that ARE working at our education level to be un-employed. So don;t talk through your ass you shill, get educated or get lost.

Ah... so you're calling me names. What exactly was your sex offense.. or are you too ashamed to say?

You just proved my point, sex offenders can find jobs. You are working. The fact that you have job insecurity in this economy is nothing unusual.

Your life is less comfortable than those of us who've stayed clean our whole life... instead of being resentful, be greatful fore what you have. Life is beautiful, and you can enjoy it.

Anonymous said...

08:43:00, you seem oblvious to the difference between sex offenders being incarcerated and those who lose their freedom in a totalitarian society. Shame on you, your comment is an insult to all who perished in the Shoah and all who rotted in the gulags in the USSR.

Stop being angry at the world. You know what, there are people who've had their face burned in a car accident and they get the same discrimination as you. Stop focusing on the negative and look at the positive in life.

Anonymous said...

You want me to enjoy this? Being thrown into a meat grinder known as the American legal system is supposed to make me remember the finer things in life. When someone knocks on your door and puts a news camera in your face and all your neighbors are watching as they attempt to humiliate you and make you lose your job, you tell me how warm and fuzzy you feel. And as for the guy who is telling me to list my offense...I don't really know...they upgrade the offense and call it something new every year. Just use your imagination...that's what all the lawmakers want you to do anyway. HAHAHAHAHHA. Hey you're right. I CAN laugh about this.

Anonymous said...

http://forensicpsychologist.blogspot.com/

Good info for those who want to learn.

madmomma said...

I just finished reading all 39 comments and must say it is evident some are personally living the nightmare, as my family is! It is also apparent a few others are oblivious about how discriminatory the sex offender laws, registry and conditions are and they "serve no purpose" except provide a "silver bullet" via the legislators for people who want someone to guarantee their kids are safe. Again, statistics show most "hands-on" offenses occur within the child's circle of family and friends. Do the research and you will find the statistics reveal the truth about sex offenders, the recividism rate compared to other offenses and more information than you can digest in one sitting. When a child goes missing the absolute first thing the news media spouts off is "registered sex offender!" When someone is murdered they don't say "registered murder" or when a bank is robbed they don't look into a camera and say, "The authorities are interviewing the local list of "Registered Bank Robbers" to determine who did it. I'm not in the state of Texas but live in Missouri and hope each and every state will take a stand to get this atrocity resolved. There are hands-on and no hands-on offenses discussed in Sex Offender Treatment Programs. The registry should be based on the individual offense and circumstances. I applaud the idea I read where the registry is maintained by the police and information given out on a "need to know basis" and if John Q Public wants a copy let him pay $20 and that will determine who is nosey and wants to harass a sex offender and who is genuinely concerned for their family.

Anonymous said...

http://forensicpsychologist.blogspot.com/2009/08/criminalizing-product-of-our-nightmares.html#comments

More direct link. Lean what's really happening to so called sex offenders.

Anonymous said...

To Paul I agree 100% I'm right in the same shoes with you

D said...

To the person who made the "Yawn" statement, allow me to tell you my story.

I can shamefully say that I'm a registered sex offender. What was my horrible crime? I played "doctor" with my sister while I myself was a minor. What is my "mark of the beast"? Labels like "Predator", "Molestor", "Monster". I've had my share of shame, humiliation, job losses and housing denials. I've had my cars broken into several times, asked to leave a neighborhood, denied access to public areas where children may congregate. I've lost friends and loved ones. In total, I've been denied 3 apartments, 1 mortgage, 1 public request to leave a neighborhood, 4 occasions my car was vandalized, 6 job losses, and for 8 years, had never the opportunity to see my very own child at his school on parent's day.

I'm starting to believe that maybe I "am" a second-class citizen as others see me. I've realized that I can never be just another member of society and have the same freedom like others, to be able to live where I wish, to relax at a park, to visit my kids at their school. Do you know how hard it is, to find any words, or excuse to tell my child when he asks why I can't come to see him at school?

My continual punishment doesn't just effect me sir, it effects my family. It effects the people I associate with. I consider myself active, yet, I cannot do the same things you can do. I cannot take a jog at a park, or take my son to the playground. I can't even attend the local church where I live.

I'm 32 years old. My mistake was over 21 years ago, and yet, I'm still behind my prison walls.

Anonymous said...

D - get ahold of texas voices.com. They would love to hear from you. They can help.

machine said...

The reality of the "unjust sex offender laws" is that they are merely extensions of punishment and forms of social angst towards those convicted of sex offense.As well these policies have proven themselves more troublesome then good; meaning they play no role in reducing crime

When policies such as: Megans Law (sex offender registration), Jessica Lunsford Act ( GPS Monitoring), 1000 foot rule, etc.,are put into broad action they are done so without any prior scientific study as to whether or not they serve an effective purpose. As well no consideration is taken regrding how such policies affect different regions of the country. Try living 1000 feet from a school park, day care, or school bus stop in a metropolitan city...you cant! And many of these laws and policies are nothing but a false sense of security hyped up by politicians who like taking the ever popular tough on crime platform. Enough! its passe and has proven itself more costly to tax payers, ineffective in its purpose and devistating to more families and their communities. How about being...not soft...not tough...but smart on crime, and stop all this silliness.
Sure sex offender registration can be usefull...to the police, and parole and probation officers. There is absolutly no reason it needs to be made available to the public via the internet...at least not without a nice fee.




As well our federal government pushes policies onto states by threatening to take away certain federal money if that state doesn't comply; states that simply want to review a policy to make sure it will not be more a burdon to its communities. Consider the differences between states like California,Texas,Florida and New York compared to Wyoming,Idaho,Montana and North Dakota. There are vast differences in population, industry, area density...

Keith Richard Radford Jr said...

Formal complant Oct 3, 2010

it's your addiction not mine
Call me to disguss it if you want
818 627 8060
No one has to agree too nor except/condone/support your addiction too unjust/illegal/federally unsound/unsustainable laws that has no basses in truth or reality. Delusional thinking does not make other people sex addicts & the people that are sexually disturbed, about people with problems with sex like sterility/multi gender/predigests leading to false arrests/charges. We can not support your addiction to inhuman punishments & torture through state sponsored terrorism. The use of Bin Laden tapes to sway political votes is no different than this story. More too come, yes this entire thing will come around and take a bite of everyone that supports these laws. I was on the street and waiting for a bus when two squad cars pulled up and sergeant CARR drove up too me from the Atascadero Police Department and told me in a sinister voice "register" I said what are you talking about? With no request for ID he says you got to register looking for a violent response. I kept my cool and told him I will be back, and shove this whole thing right up your ass sir. Rick's Cafe, in the mythical saloon from the 1942 film "Casablanca" had people trying to leave the country too get away from bad laws but not cameras on every street corner and police accosting citizens without warrant or provocation's, so wait till these laws built on lies arrest you for missing an oil change. How much must someone endure when an officer that has never been met before can pull up and start a fight? How much money is this guy getting from people to act like this on the street? The other officer was quite and reserved watching the whole thing. He should have been the sergeant and not this immature strange man out for a fight on the street he did not get in Atascadero California Tuesday September 28, 2010 at a bus stop waiting for a bus. How long will it be before your forced laws will just cause the officers to kill someone without more than a possible description of someone and with our record of record keeping our lies personified by poor data entry will start the biggest run of blood on our streets over touching someone, sorry but your sick and disgusting un~thought~out proposal lacks worth and is an abomination in any country in the world. Sex has become something police can harass someone on the street about even if that sex was over twenty five years ago and the person served time the police can send Carr's out to engage in force action at a bus stop. This constitutes harassment and force as a formal complaint against the Atascadero Police Department for illegal use of force and nobody cares so what's next, like Chicago in the 30's when they gun people down on street corners waiting for buses? Isn't that what got prohibition shut down?

Here a duly appointed officer of the law has done nothing less than a terror attact on the streets of California and I will never get this immage of events out of my mind.
Mark my words, some ready bumpkin with a gun will soon enough act out like so many others have, just try google~ing murdered sex offenders and see how many you can count last week.