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National

AL: Alabama’s state legislature just passed a bill to chemically castrate child sex offenders

[insider.com – 6/5/19]

Alabama’s state legislature passed a bill Tuesday that will require convicted child sex offenders to undergo chemical castration prior to their release, raising questions about the legality and ethics of castration.

According to the legislation, known as House Bill 379, a person convicted of a sexual offense involving anyone under the age of 13 will be required, as a condition of parole, “to undergo chemical castration treatment in addition to any other penalty or condition prescribed by law.”

The person will be obligated to pay for the cost of treatment, and a refusal to be castrated would be considered a parole violation, the legislation reads. The bill now goes to Gov. Kay Ivey’s desk for signature.

Janice Bellucci, executive director of the Alliance for Constitutional Sex Offense Laws, which advocates for the civil rights of people convicted of sex crimes and their families, agreed, describing chemical castration as “barbaric and ineffective.”

“It seems to be what some people would call Old Testament justice and you talk about an ‘eye-for-an-eye’ or a ‘tooth-for-a-tooth,’ ” she said. “There are many treatment options that could be effective and you certainly would think the state would spend their resources providing treatment to people who have made such a grievous mistake and who have harmed a child, but chemical castration is not treatment. It’s punishment.”

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  1. pgm111

    I would expect nothing less from Alabama, America’s asshole.

    • Steven V.

      As someone who spent many years working in political advocacy, I am both surprised and appalled that this type of legislation was ever even introduced. Although Alabama has a lengthy history of passing harmful legislation, it seems, at best, that this type of behavior would be politically dangerous. At its simplest level, when politicians alienate a segment of their constituency, they lose support and, more importantly, political contributions.

      It would be prudent for the Governor Ivey to veto this legislation, as it will not survive the impending legal challenge that is sure to come.

  2. SR

    “I had people call me in the past when I introduced it and said don’t you think this is inhumane? I asked them what’s more inhumane than when you take a little infant child, and you sexually molest that infant child when the child cannot defend themselves or get away, and they have to go through all the things they have to go through,” Hurst said. “If you want to talk about inhumane — that’s inhumane.”

    How about all non-sexual abuses of children and spouses? Was it less inhumane when my stepfather used to beat my 2-year-old brother to the point where the belt would come apart? Or when he nearly killed my mother on my birthday? Is there a bill in the works where such offenders will have their limbs amputated prior to release? You can really smell these politicians gunning for votes with the lowest common denominator.

  3. Mp

    I am actually sick to my stomach. These people don’t give a damn about anyone. NO ONE. Not even their own children because they are not taking steps to actually help people.

  4. Jack

    Well the legislature can do what it wants I suppose. But I only know one thing, any doctor crazy enough to prescribe medication like this ought to be put in prison.

  5. Lovecraft

    In the long run, I doubt this law survives. In the short term, its terrifying to see any governing body in this day and age attempt to create such a law. Does this apply to cases going forward or everyone? Reading the article its seems the posture of the law has changed and it applies to anyone convicted of a crime where the victim was under 13 even non contact. Could you imagine if they decided to enforce this retroactively? What if someone on the registry in another state moves to Alabama with a crime that was committed after the law is implemented.? Imagine having to worry where you are moving because of laws like these.

    • JuniorSD

      @Lovecraft

      Registrants already have to worry about where they move because of laws like these. Maybe not to this extreme, but any registrant looking to relocate to another state, or even other cities within their state most definitely need to do their due diligence in researching what the local laws may require.

      • Lovecraft

        Yes Im well aware of most of the terrible laws across the nation and the legal minefield they create when trying to navigate the 50 states, but this law takes it to a whole new extreme. A silver lining here is the crazier the laws they make the easier it will be for us to show scotus that this whole scheme is punishment. Heck, the lawmakers even say they want this as punishment in the article.

    • AJ

      @Lovecraft:
      “What if someone on the registry in another state moves to Alabama with a crime that was committed after the law is implemented.?”
      —–
      Since the “procedure” is a condition of parole, the only way it could maybe apply to someone convicted outside AL is an ICOTS parolee (though apparently not probationer). Given one is subject to the supervision rules of both the sending and receiving States, AL could maybe enforce it.

  6. Janice Bellucci

    Chemical castration has many side effects, some known and others unknown. One reported death related to chemical castration was the death of Alan Turing, who is known by many as the inventor of the first modern computer. Because Mr. Turing was gay, he who was required to subject himself to chemical castration in order to subdue his interest in men. Instead, it poisoned him. Society lost a good man and a great intellect when Mr. Turing died at the age of 41. The story of his life is told in the movie “The Imitation Game”.

    • TS

      Alan Turing’s story is a sad one in the end, but a great one overall to be read about and watch in the movie Janice mentioned. His work was definitely applicable to the mission undertaken 75 years ago today on the Normandy beaches of France.

    • Mp

      Just wow….I had no idea. We don’t seem to be advancing as a people. 🙁

    • Joe

      This requirement is a condition of parole. It is not considered treatment under the best of circumstances. If parole is part of the punishment process, then yeah, this condition is indeed, punishment. But avoidable – by not taking parole. Which is already unavailable for those convicted of certain sex crimes – like 1st Degree Rape or Section 13A-6-62 – Rape in the second degree – a 16 year old having a 14 year old girlfriend, Class B Felony. That is the law in Alabama.

      While these chemical injections are a condition of parole, the person is expected to continue them until terminated by a court (as opposed to completing parole). A parolee may “elect to terminate treatments” and return to prison to serve out their term, while a “parolee who intentionally stops receiving the treatment” commits a new felony. From, apparently, a parole condition.

      The list of offenses required to comply with this parole condition include pretty much any offense under the sex crimes umbrella. So this would mean that transmitting obscene material by computer to a 12 year old would trigger this chemical castration as a condition for parole, while those convicted of really heinous crimes against small children would be excluded from parole, and thusly, from chemical castration.

      “The court” shall inform the subject about medical consequences of this course of action. Because we know that human beings are all the same, medically speaking. What could go wrong?

      This bill is not only a bad idea, it is poorly crafted and should not survive its first challenge.
      http://alisondb.legislature.state.al.us/ALISON/SearchableInstruments/2019RS/PrintFiles/HB379-enr.pdf

      I am not really familiar with Alan Turing and I have not watched the movie, but from what I could gather his death was attributed to cyanide poisoning (intentional or accidental).

      HB 379 is a terrible bill, no doubt, but distorting the facts is not helpful. There are enough opportunities for a challenge right in it. IMHO.

  7. TS

    A kicker on this could be is this is the state that “To Kill a Mockingbird” is based in with Atticus Finch, the legal person of hope Judge Matsch looked up to. Where is Atticus Finch now when this is on the Govnuh’s desk to be signed?

  8. bob

    Id call this a rogue state and it should be eliminated from being part of the US…. then again many many other states should be also !!

  9. 290 air

    Will they be forcing abortions on people who become pregnant and have a past history of physically abusing children? I doubt it.

  10. Joe123

    Wouldn’t it make sense even for Alabama to consider this option as an alternative to indefinite hospitalization/confinement of someone? They could either get chemical castration and roam in public, or be held in indefinitely. I could see SOME logic to them as this would be for the “worst of the worst”.

    However, the bar is set very low here with this law. It will ensure hundreds of people are chemically castrated without due process. This is definitely going to be legally challenged real quick.

    Laws are really screwed up all over down South, eh? Some of us should be counting our lucky stars that we live in progressive/liberal states. The South is trying to continue slavery, one way or another.

    • Harry

      “This is definitely going to be legally challenged real quick.” The IML and the Passport identifiers was challenged real quick, but it was stop and nothing moved since, now RCs are saddled with this demon.

    • Minor American

      No it will not be a problem for Alabama to do this and more !
      Because good people will not take a stand !
      And the powers that be have been allowed to continue this path of PUNISHMENTS under the guise of righteous laws and the people like the lies that they believe !
      This law will continue..it is mingled with a infant and moving In a cloud of other sex crimes such as touching a budding breast of a 11 yes old and such minor violations that do not merrit castration..but the idiots will prevail…I know people and very harsh and unconstitutional laws that hide in the details will be the norm !!
      Who will argue…in time to save the poor souls …the Castrated men !!!
      No one !!
      It’s coming !!
      People love a good Good guy bad guy !!
      You will see !!

  11. Laura

    Have any of these politicians ever attended a history class? It’s The 75th anniversary of D-Day and here we are still fighting pure evil, hate and ignorance of those in power.

  12. G4Change

    Hitler would be proud!

  13. bbo

    This isnt equal punishment under the law… no offense to woman but IF a woman molests a child.. what about castrating them, ohh wait we cant maybe they should have a mastectomy ?

    Lame loser that is trying to introduce this bill, they should be castrated just simply for being in politics !!

    • CR

      This is chemical, not physical, castration. It involves drugs, not knives. Anaphrodisiac drugs can be administered to women too, although there is less research on their effectiveness in lowering sex drive in women.

      Some info here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chemical_castration

      • Bill

        I don’t know what chemical castration point has to do with Jack diddly !!
        There are no real studies or published ones about chemical… Because these people want it to be accepted and used as punishment !!
        Only an idiot would believe or make light if a drug that forces un natural changes in grown mens bodies and portrait these SIDE EFFECTS as just ok ! Mild to middle severe !!!
        Are you Stupid !!
        It messes up the hormones and bodily functions of procreation attached to make identity !
        Strength, sight, muscles, moods, bones, testicle srinkage etc…etc..
        It’s intermingled with the whole body !!
        So, people pit the crime against the punishment and Don’t care about the person, they decide absolute fate of individuals who cannot redeem themselves and are subjected to torture!
        It’s not they did this or that !!
        Read it says any crime involving A 13 or 12 whatever or younger is forced Castration for entire life !!!!

        • CR

          I am as appalled by the idea and as angry about it as you are Bill. I neither accept it nor condone it. I think only a monster could vote for a law that subjects any person to involuntary life-altering and potentially dangerous medication. The bill’s author, the sponsors, and every legislator who voted for it needs to have their head examined because they are clearly off their rocker and are unfit to be making laws.

          I was only pointing out to the poster that I was responding to that, because it is accomplished using drugs, rather than by surgery, that it could certainly be applied to women as well as to men. It just seemed like he missed that point.

          I hope that clears things up for you.

    • Mo Mohktari

      Genital mutilation of females has been a thing for a long time.

      • TS

        @Mo

        Male genital mutilation has been a thing for a long time also. Ever hear of circumcision?

        This is not about female genital mutilation of closing up the vaginal area but attempting to chemically induce different states of lower sex drive in the end as intended.

      • Mr watchmenow

        So, why would anyone even submit anything about women when these things clearly and wholly have to do with men being tortured !!
        Hello !!
        Stop worrying about the women and get back to the men where the Real problems are !!
        To this is why men have progressively became worse in Society !!
        It’s about nens Rights and Issues !!
        Yes there are a few things women need a!!
        But let’s be Honest and do what’s Right People !!
        Thank You !!

  14. ab

    I won’t ever stop thinking children who are sex offenders when I read or hear “child sex offenders”. If only Alabama was barbaric enough to require chemical castration of children (anyone under eighteen according to federal law).

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