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In defense of Josh Duggar’s parents (Opinion)

When I learned that, more than a decade ago, reality-TV star Josh Duggar avoided jail after his parents dealt with molestation charges via church and family contacts, it made me think about the men I interviewed for my book about our draconian sex-offender laws. Full Opinion Piece

Related

Tyrant’s Foe: Josh Gravens Fights Criminal Justice Policies that Hurt Children

Sex offenders registry may put man back in prison for offence committed as child

TX: Life On the List

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  1. ab

    We need a clear definition of what constitutes molestation in this and all other cases on an individual basis because the laws are so whacked out that little to no consistency exists. Then everyone must pull their heads out of their own asses and question the effects of an act of molestation. Ignore the word molestation so the focus can be on the interaction between those involved. Measure the gains and losses of each person in detail.

    I don’t believe all touching (which is typically what molestation covers) must be bad or non consensual or even sexual regardless of what body parts are touched. Did Josh Duggar break the law? I don’t know. With the statue of limitations run out and no clear framing for the laws over a decade ago versus what occurred, all that remains are fading memories.

    He might have done something highly inappropriate, but even “inappropriate” is a subjective term open to all manner of interpretation. In the end my point is neither to condemn or condone the actions of Josh nor any other person. Rather I want people to talk about the underlying issues in a civil, non biased, and productive way so eventually said issues are no longer issues because action will have been taken from a place of real understanding to resolve/manage areas of concern before they arise.

  2. Q

    Had this peen published in news print a year back I would have fallen out of my chair. This author hit’s on some truths that I’m happy are now coming to light in the media. I view these things as portents of what is coming; change.

    This is one of the more far reaching statements that I think most of us here have been aware of for quite some time;

    “Instead, we’re blinded by hysteria. Merely debating whether people should be allowed to move on after being punished for a sex offense is often now viewed as evidence that one doesn’t care about protecting children or victims.”

    I suspect what people “engaged in the growing movement for criminal-justice reform” really care about is feeding the dark side of America, which the criminal industrial complex that incarcerates 25% of the worlds prisoners.

  3. Fed Up

    Excellent article. We need more rational thinking writers like this one to help change the tides!

  4. Mjk

    Exemplary opinion piece written for the NY Daily News. Not one wasted word in support of reform.

  5. Harry

    Sex abuse do damage and I know, in many cases, the response to this by authorities usally damages victims more. If, there any creditability to so-called “un-reported sex crimes” is it is not reported because, of harshness of sex offender laws.

  6. Timmr

    “Protecting Our Kids? How Sex Offender Laws are Failing Us.” I’m going to get this book and read it. I’ve just finished “A Parallel Universe”. Previously, I’ve read “Punishing the Poor” and “We’re All in this Together” and am working my way down the CARSOL book list. I recommend them. The good thing about books is they flesh out, deepen and humanize the issues. I’ve been able to see how my little story parallels the stories of many others, so I don’t feel so isolated — so ignorant so powerless.

    • Q

      Right on timmr; I too have read “A Parallel Universe. That book is full of insights and information. The thing about that book is when I bought a copy at a L.A. RSOL meeting the lies and hysteria were the predominant public views. That book was; and I’m sure still is, ignored by the mainstream public. I think it does a good job at deconstructing all the false beliefs about registrants, as well as the misguided logic that created the registry and has taken this society several hundred years back to a time when someone called a witch would be burned alive at the stake!!!

      • Timmr

        I could really relate to that book. The time frame and the overall situation was similar to what I went through — although one important detail — I wasn’t as lucky as the character in the book to escape into another country. The plot continues to be murky for us stuck here. As we here say, thank goodness for CARSOL and like organizations, and RSO’s themselves for shedding a beam of light on our paths. There is noticeably more illumination on the RSO landscape, even if it is just a sliver of moon peaking over the horizon; but even that is powerful enough to lift the blinding fear I have felt for so long. I didn’t even know how badly it had surrounded me, until it started to dissipate and I could see possibility again.

        • Q

          What I liked most about the book is all the facts and dates. The book also shows us the progression of this society’s digression into the confused mess we are forced to live under. Thank God for people like Janice and Chance, as well as Alex Landon and Elaine Halleck. I was more interested in Alex’s part of the book because of all the facts.

  7. mike r

    Best news article I’ve read to date. We are going to see change hopefully sooner then later. Articles like this and post like timmrs gives me hope and reminds me I’m not alone in this. There are thousands and thousands of US facing the same problems across the country and thank god we aren’t in one if those states that are even more extreem than ours thank god we have Janice and all the support we have.

  8. The Unforgiven

    Too bad Duggar isn’t from CA. I believe one could apply for exclusion from Megan’s Law by molesting your relatives, which apparently isn’t as bad as someone outside of your family (sarcastic tone).

    • ab

      The California exclusions are very odd to say the least. Some logically more serious offenses are easy to get a pass on than other less serious ones. Whoever wrote the exclusions had and probably still has unaddressed problems. I would go so far as to say most individuals involved in writing laws in the United States and specifically laws about appropriate sexual conduct and sexual norms are very unstable people.

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