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CaliforniaLiving with 290

Living with 290: No More use of the term “Sex Offender”

I would like to ask and insist that we all stop, that is STOP using the words “sex offender.”  It’s pejorative, demeaning, and keeps the idea that registrants keep “offending.”  Word use is VERY IMPORTANT in our cause – and the words we choose to use make people either cringe or open their minds.

Just like any other racial or otherwise de-humanizing words, and we know what those words are, continuing to use them keeps up the hate, the fear, and the political rhetoric.  Let us choose BETTER words because I am not a SO!  I am a person first, that must register under the draconian laws we have in this wonderful country of ours.

I highly suggest using the term “Registrant or Register Person.”  Not even Registered Citizen is good enough as no one needs to be a citizen to be in this mess.
More important is that we are all PEOPLE first and ever more need to be seen as people first.

Ok, let’s do this.  Thank you!

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I wholeheartedly agree. I always use terms like registry and registrant. It emphasizes the unconstitutional nature of what we’re fighting.

Language is incredibly important in any civil rights movement. For example, In 2012 a majority of Americans opposed “redefining marriage” and “homosexual marriage” but supported “same-sex marriage” and “marriage equality.” Go figure.

Plus, as governments continue to expand registries to include non-sexual offenses, the SO terminology becomes increasingly irrelevant.

Yes, I completely agree. My son was quite young and still is young and this title brings him to tears and gives him nightmares. In fact, the whole thing of having to register is stupid as less than 1% ever offend.

Yes, follow the standard set by the American Disabilities Act. State “Person” first because that is what we are, then followed by the disabling term: “On the registry.” I am a person on the registry. Hopefully a person temporarily on the registry, and certainly a person placed on the registry, as I didn’t not do it willingly.

Follow the standard set by the American Disabilities Act. State “Person” first because that is our identifying character, then the disabling factor last, “On the Registry.” I am a person on the registry.

I always use the term within quotes to indicate that it is a condition imposed upon us by the government. I am quoting the government, and those willing to trust government in such matters, when I use the term. I still need to use the term in those instances in which it is relevant, with quotes, of course.

When I was going to therapy I would only refer to myself as a registered person and it drove the counselor nuts. She asked why I did not use the term sex offender and I told her how can I be a sex offender when 1. there was no victim and 2. no sex, or request for sex took place since it was an internet entrapment sting.

@ Prisoner: Your “therapist” was a jackass. A lot of therapists seem to believe those who have committed a sex offense are all the same. They seem to follow an Alcoholics Anonymous model that requires one to constantly and always call oneself a “sex offender”, much like someone with alcohol problems must, per AA, always refer to themselves as an “alcoholic”….. even after many years of sobriety, they still are an “alcoholic…in recovery”. Personally, I would find it frustrating and infuriating. Your therapist need to learn to listen – really listen – to clients.

Not true about alcoholic anonymous. The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking. People choose to call them self alcoholics.

It amuse me that most of the sex therapist in male sex offender treatment programs are women. This is the same thing like going to a dog for advise on cats.

Absolutely. Do not use the term and do not allow others to either. If they do then point out that the term is clearly inaccurate. So people who use it are liars.

I like Person Registered for Harassment, Restrictions, and Punishments. PRHRP

Also, Person Listed on a Nanny Big Government Hit List is pretty good.

I like this new term! More accurate indeed.

Be aware of your audience and how they might interpret what you say. The English language is amazing. Don’t trow any of it away. Using bigoted terms can be effective when used in a sarcastic way. “I am a sex offender. For some reason I haven’t reoffended in 20 years. Must be something wrong with me”. No, something must wrong with the registry mobsters. Use their terms to ridicule them.

U guys can call yourselves whatever you want the district attorney office dont care neither does law enforcement and all there SAFE task forces with there fake ass compliance checks where they watch you for about 5 or 6 days before actually knocking on your door and scaring the shit out of your neighbors…

I don’t think I like you or your attitude. How about you meet up with me so we can discuss our differences in person. You know, just you and someone who happens to be on a list. Be about it

I agree, the use of the term “sex offender” should cease, it’s like calling a black person the “n” word, and Latinos the “s” word in a derogatory term to dehumanize, and make them feel ashamed of themselves.

Actually the LEO do not use “sex offender”, they use “290”. It is the media, sex victims advocates and politicians use it, freely.

Rather than say not to use “word 1” “word 2”, it would be much better to totally avoid using those words that you do not want used. Not even to describe the words not to use.
Do not use labels to describe a person! Use person first language instead.
A person who is required to register. A person forced to register. A person listed on the registry. A person who committed a sex offense.
Don’t even use alternate labels that some have suggested, such as “registrant”. It is still a label and is not proper “person first” language.

Another important thing we need to practice… Keep in mind always that over 95% of the time that a sex offense arrest happens, it was of a first time offender with no criminal history. Most of the time when a person is added to the registry they are put there for their first offense. So when using the person first language, think about keeping it singular and not plural.

Don’t use “people”, use “person”. Don’t say “sex offenses”, say “sex offense”. It is a little thing but it will form a habit that eventually will catch on and spread.

The simple reminders: “person first” and “singular”.

Another thing I want to say about that “over 95% are not on the registry”, is that means that anyone is 20 times more likely to be sexually offended by a person that is not on the registry than by a person listed on the registry. This is why the registry and it’s restrictions can have very little to no effect on rates of sex crimes.

“Orwell-Speak” is precisely why quotation marks are needed for terms like “sex offender,” “sexual violence” (which does actual violence to the English language through its creepy “New Speak” mob-manipulation) and “sexual predator.” Use quotes early and often when communicating the terms which others use to define and malign you. Through their words, paint them always as the dishonest and malevolent assholes that they are by unfailingly reminding those in our movement of their fundamental cruelty and mendacity.

@ chuck
Well said.

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