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The Sex Offender Registry: Vengeful, unconstitutional and due for full repeal

The Bureau of Justice Statistics reports that at least 95 percent of all state prisoners will be released from prison at some point. However, convicted sex-offenders almost exclusively face the vengeful, additional punishment of registration under the Sex Offender Registry and Notification Act (SORNA). Full Opinion Piece

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  1. Eric

    What a beautiful article. So true. It is going to happen.

  2. Mike S

    Not sure why ACSOL published The Hill’s reprint of this story, but the writer is Jesse Kelley, who has written some good articles in the past. She has a POV that a lot of us can understand. Here is the link to R Street, who first published the article. While I don’t subscribe to R Streets POV on a lot of matters, it is nice to see a conservative group that believes in LESS government and does not make Registries the exception to that tenant like almost every over Conservative group or movement! (article is on front page as of today)

  3. New Person

    From the article:
    all sex offenders in California and South Carolina register for life, regardless of the crimes committed. By demanding post-detention reporting for up to a lifetime, the court is presuming that an individual has the propensity to commit a certain type of crime in the future and therefore must be scrupulously supervised.

    This is what I am inferring to when I say the CA registration term of lifetime innately means for a life term. While there could be a way out, the starting point is a lifetime term. Despite the risk levels administered and given as well as the below 1% recidivism rates by CDCR, how registrants are regarded is summed up very well by Jesse Kelley. It is a blanket treatment to all registrants. Someone with a low risk level is treated the same way as a someone with a very high risk level with respect to the registry.

    This thought pervades into immunity programs and specifically excludes registrants from benefiting. While I have been focused on 1203.4 (case dismissal), we recently seen Prop 57 trying to exclude registrants.

    Prop 57:
    Under Proposition 57, CDCR incentivizes inmates to take responsibility for their own rehabilitation with credit-earning opportunities for sustained good behavior, as well as in-prison program and activities participation. Proposition 57 also moves up parole consideration of nonviolent offenders who have served the full-term of the sentence for their primary offense and who demonstrate that their release to the community would not pose an unreasonable risk of violence to the community. These changes will lead to improved inmate behavior and a safer prison environment for inmates and staff alike, and give inmates skills and tools to be more productive members of society once they complete their incarceration and transition to supervision.

    By excluding registrants in this immunity program, they are implying that registrants cannot be rehabilitated, cannot improve inmate behavior, and cannot provide for a safer prison environment.

    Here is another instance where registrants are excluded from benefits provided by the state of CA:

    So not only are registrants being stigmatized by the public, they are being stigmatized within the convicted class. You get no benefits from 1203.4 (case dismissal), you’re being excluded from the overnight visits, and you’re trying to be excluded from early release that all the other sets of convicts are able to benefit from.

    BTW, because all registrants in CA and SC are lifetime terms only, then all registrants are excluded from federal Housing and Urban Development, HUD, assistance. Thus, implying all registrants from CA and SC are far worse than registrants from other states. That, itself, is egregiously defaming of character from all low and mid-level risked registrants.

    Lastly, why are registrants still under custody of the state as free citizens? We are being supervised and are “required” to report any new changes in our lives as well as abide by restrictions only applied to registrants like terms of parole and probation.

  4. Facts should matter

    Megan’s Law gives aid and comfort to people that don’t need it (strangers, nosy neighbors, vigliantes), then by extention, the cops smugly get to take false credit for protecting children from us.

    That alone just makes me want to flip out.

    The public is purposely being misinformed and misled for same reason people go to horror movies and can’t look away from a train/car wrecks.

    • Tim L


      It is a “sham in mere pretext”, but Megan’s law also:

      Granted authorities the legal ability to use computer databases for political security including the mass collections of data even on the law abiding.

      Evened out the racial imbalances in the jails, state prison and federal lockups.

      Grants the appearance of public safety where very little exists.

      Covers up the failure of LEOs, Congress and administrative branches to ACTUALLY
      make the public safer through law making.

      In short it is not necessary for the prince to provide tangible security, he must merely appear interested. SOR does just that.

      • Facts should matter

        Correct. All it does it pacify and appease worry-wart parents for votes. In short, it’s a “crowd pleaser” and a money maker for the security theater cottage industry.

        • New Person

          Here’s a quote from the movie “Men In Black” that sums the registry and the public:
          Edwards: Why the big secret? People are smart. They can handle it.

          Kay: A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky dangerous animals and you know it. Fifteen hundred years ago everybody knew the Earth was the center of the universe. Five hundred years ago, everybody knew the Earth was flat, and fifteen minutes ago, you knew that humans were alone on this planet. Imagine what you’ll know tomorrow.

          Tomorrow, you’ll realize the recidivism rates for registrants in CA are under 1%.

  5. T

    The sex offender registry should be abolished because it does nothing to keep anyone safe from harm, it exploits and endangers those that have paid their debts to society that have done nothing wrong and are trying to live freely and do the right things. People need to cut the nonsense about how these laws are keeping everyone and children safe, because that shows their dependence on the system but instead should learn to be responsible for protecting love ones themselves and teach their children about keeping safe around people and online.

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