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General News

Obama Just Signed a Really Bad Criminal Justice Law

Is this really the best Congress can do? – After months of hype about the historic bipartisan consensus that we must make the American criminal justice system less harsh, President Obama finally signed a justice reform bill into law Monday. There’s only one problem: Instead of making the justice system more fair and less punitive, the new law will make it more vindictive and petty. Specifically, it will require people who have been convicted of sex crimes against minors to carry special passports in which their status as registered sex offenders will be marked with conspicuous identifying marks. Full Article

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  1. Friend of RSOL

    This is a muddled article, with too much equivocation. I’m very confused by the author’s citation of recidivism rates, and it sounds like the commenters are, too.

    There is a large number of intelligent comments, which is good to see.

    Somehow we need to get the word out to journalists VERY CLEARLY how these laws work:

    – WHO is on the registry – not all are “serial predators,” “pedophiles,” “child rapists,” and whatever extreme terms are used
    (Romeo and Juliet cases are cited, but there should also be mention of the varying ages of consent and how misdemeanors are also registerable)
    – HOW the ex post facto laws are being passed and how extreme and damaging they are AND how misguided and ineffective they are
    – WHY this whole system is based on so-called prevention of future crime by effectively putting every individual who is out of prison or jail or who is off probation on perpetual probation and/or restrictions –
    – WHERE these decisions are made: NOT in the courts, in front of juries and judges, where they belong, but in politicized legislatures, and because of demands of a panicked public

    Also, how these laws affect these people’s FAMILIES.

    • Timmr

      Very good comments, Friend, thanks for bringing them to my attention. If you haven’t already, send them also to the writer or put them in the comments section. That’s mostly where the educating needs to be done.

  2. Timmr

    Truly encouraging that we have members of the fourth estate willing to call into question seemingly slam/dunk laws. Our form of Democracy isn’t completely corrupt.

  3. Q

    Has the poor excuse for a president ever done anything good?

    • Jason

      Yes Q, he has. He has nominated 2 Supreme Court justices that are likely sympathetic to the RSO cause. Had McCain/Romney been elected, those two judges would have swung right, and the chances of Janice’s lawsuit prevailing would have been slim to none.

      • C

        That is the theory and, while I still have a strong inclination toward a more liberal democrat president picking a Supreme Court justice, it was the more conservative Bush Appointee Justice Roberts who supported Obama Care. SO, it does not always turn out that way.

        I read some time ago that since the whole Bork debacle 30 years ago a presidents choice is not so much based on who will support his ideals, but who will be approved by the Senate.

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