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Aljazeera – Pariahs among us: Sex offender laws in the 21st century

Maybe it is not so surprising that all we can think to do with a subject we are simultaneously obsessed with and repulsed by is to shout our alarm about it at every opportunity. Sex crimes: The only kind of offence in the United States that compels all convicted perpetrators to register their name, address, date of birth, fingerprints and a photograph on a public website.

And what constitutes a sex crime? The breadth of this damning classification is alarming and includes public urination, consensual teen sex, sale of sex and exposure of genitals (including in the case of children) – as well as violent rape. Full Article

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Great article and I hope that it is picked up by more news outlets than AlJazeera. The hypocrisy and insanity of the sex offender hysteria of this nation knows no bounds. Ten year olds forced to register!?

The headline story on AlJeera and everywhere else these days is the case of Malala Yousafzai who was gunned down by Taliban for advocating education for girls. If that happened here and they caught her assailant, he would have an easier time in prison and as a free man than if he groped her on a city bus and was forced to register as a sex offender.
Something is very wrong with this picture, but I overstate the obvious.

My anger combined with heartache swell as I struggle to solve the riddle which plagues me daily: how can I properly raise my children while a registered sex offender? How can I bring peace of mind to my wife who anguishes over this question 24 hours a day? My kids are only 4 and 1, but my 4 year old wants to know why mommy is the only one who takes her to school. Kids are cruel and if her classmates find out about me…I shudder at the notion of what she will go through at school.

She and I are very very close, as a father and daughter should be. If I move away she will be devastated, and I cannot fathom the idea of not having her in my life. Indeed, me being here or not being here could have long-lasting negative ramifications for her. Which option is worse? Is there a third, or fourth?

I need to get myself into a situation where I can work abroad – my name no longer associated with our address, but visit her and my son as they grow up as much as possible. I liken it to the soldier or travelling businessman’s living situation where mom is home with the kids. My wife makes 6 figures (I used to before the Meagan’s Law site went up), so she will be OK financially, plus her parents are a fantastic help.

Hopefully, the pendulum will swing the other direction, or I can build a life in a friendly environment and bring them to me.

I apologize for getting off topic. I never comment here, but felt compelled to do so tonight.

@CharlieO – I would like to respond, if I may be so bold, that there is no need to despair as these are just bad and unjust laws, and those are passed and repealed all the time. But the pendulum will not swing the other direction on its own. It takes leadership, courage, mass and resources.

Janice provides unbelievable leadership. When have those named and shamed ever had before the courage to stand up in public and protest? On video, mind you, and in numbers like in recent City Council meetings? Lawsuits have been filed, media awareness (international) is being raised, people are engaging. The wheels are in motion.

The time is now. Get involved, either with your time and skills, or your resources. Your family makes a decent income? Donate money – perhaps with changing laws you will reap the reward many times over by letting you get back to your old economic ways. If you made a good salary in the past you must have tangible skills. Find out how you can help. There are many ways to get involved – for all comfort zones and ability levels.

Another option is to sit by and see if things will improve by themselves. They won’t (my opinion). Then your only option is to move to another country, away from your family. And good luck with that, with your record, in a place other than the Philippines or Belize, etc.

Stand up, show up, speak up. If not you – who? If not now – when?

[/ off soap box ]

Thank you, CharlieO, for your comment. We would like to hear more from you. I agree that this is a well written and balanced article. It’s interesting to note that it is for an international publication. It would be great to have more articles like this published in U.S. publications.

Charlie. I too have three kids, one I just sent off to college. I had the same fears as you about my daughters friends “finding out”. Well they did and they went to their parents with questions. The parents(who already knew) were level headed and told them our family has been thru enough and to not worry about it. They did. And those girls are still best friends today and they hug me every time they see me. I know you fear the unknown. I take my kids to school everyday as you should as there is no law that you can’t. Keep your head high and know in your mind you are doing the right things in life.

@steve – umm, yes, there is a law that keeps CharlieO from entering a school (without prior permission from the principal – completely discretionary). I believe it is PC 626.81. Now, you can drop of and pickup your kids at the curb, but if they are too small for that – proceed with caution. The last thing we would want to do is encourage conduct that gets anyone arrested in front of their child and the whole school.

Thank you for the encouraging words, all, and I will become involved more to fight this insanity rather than sitting idly by.
That you, Joe, for the information about PC 626.81. I had no idea this was on the books and am glad to have not found this out the hard way.

Charlie I avoided pc 626.81 by meeting with the principal of my school and the archdioceses lawyer. It was not by my choice as once “the list” went online I was “summoned” by all. It worked out ok for me as I am allowed to be on campus for my kids events. It was hard walking around campus knowing everyone knew but I sucked it up for my kids. I still have faith in people that if they see you doing the right things they are more forgiving. Some will not…their problem. They can’t harass you.