Happy Holidays and Sad Sussex Thoughts

So I was … gently reminded this holiday season that my pen has been silent recently.  Of course, the holiday season is a great excuse for that, so I will simply carry on giving my opinions about whatever I feel the need to.

I would like to start by wishing everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.  Naturally, these well wishes are a bit belated, but I wish them all the same.  Although I realize the technicalities involving the calendar year (we didn’t start with a year zero) but I would still consider this a new decade.  What a decade it has been…  What a year this has been…  It truly leaves one unsure of where to start.

I will say I am sick of hearing about White House party crashers.  Who cares?  I mean that literally, with all else going on in the world and country who cares this far after the fact?  Although they could have been carrying bombs, they weren’t.  I am also sick of Tiger Woods.  Are there many celebrities anyone can name who have been faithful to their spouses?  Maybe, wait, I’m getting an idea here, that’s why most Hollywood weddings don’t last.  I don’t care if an athlete was cheating on his wife with numerous women.  Once again there are more important issues happening around us.

Do you know what I do care about?  I care about our own local pedophile (I believe it is an insult to other pediatricians to call him one).  The actions that man carried out were horrendous.  I feel the families involved will rightfully never be the same.  I also hope that parents will learn from this incident.  A friend of my family taught her children something I always thought was interesting.  She taught her children to call their genitalia by its correct name (penis or vagina) stating that nicknames were not admissible in a court of law.  This was about 7 years ago, but I always remembered how she wanted to ensure her children knew what was a good touch and how to tell people if someone hurt them.  The details of the videos this “man” (I use that term very loosely here) recorded for his own sick pleasure are horrific and once again I apologize to the families involved in this and the community as a whole.  I am aware this affects all of us.

That being said, I completely disagree with what John Atkins is trying to push through right now.  I see his bill as a way to win support from a community in pain.  I see this bill as a people pleaser,  It is so easy to say “I want tougher sex offender penalties” when we have been so recently hurt as a whole community.  I strongly urge politicians to carefully review the constitutionality of every aspect of the bill instead of seeing something that will make people feel like the politicians care.  I will tell everyone right now, there is no way a politician does not care about an issue like this.  This changes everyone in the area at least a little in the way they view doctors, hospitals, and other care providers.  Here is the proposed bill.

Proposed Legislation for Sexual Offenders

Background

a.. Recently, there has been a lot in the news about child sex offenders and their victims.
a.. Dr. Earl Bradley at BayBees in Lewes may have molested up to 100 children in a 10 year period.
b.. Dover sex offender charged with molesting a 7 year old.
c.. Sarah Foxwell’s body was found Christmas Day not far from the Delaware border.
b.. These stories are very tragic, and as a State Representative, I want to ensure that all children in Delaware are safe from sex offenders.
c.. Ultimately, I would like Delaware to be the toughest state in the nation on high-risk, repeat sex offenders.
d.. I am currently drafting several pieces of legislation that will affect high-risk, repeat sex offenders and will make Delaware a safer place for all of us.

a.. Proposed Legislation
b.. All high-risk, repeat sex offenders should receive truth in sentencing when serving time for a sexual offense.
a.. If a sexual offender is giving 20 years for molesting a child, that person should serve 20 years of jail time, not 8 or 9.
b.. Any sexual offender who is convicted of a second sexual offense will be served a mandatory life sentence.
c.. We need zero-tolerance sentencing for child molesters and other sex offenders.
c.. For all high-risk, repeat sex offenders, their driver’s license (or state ID) will be stamped with the words “sex offender.”
a.. This tool will allow law enforcement officers to better protect the public from repeat offenders.
b.. For example, a police officer in a routine traffic stop will remember a license stamped with “sex offender” and that memory may come in handy if a child is hurt or kidnapped from the area.
c.. Also, in places with large crowds like the state fair or a busy park, law enforcement officers do not have access to a computer. A stamped driver’s license will alert the officer to the presence of a high-risk, repeat sex offender.
d.. For all high-risk, repeat sex offenders, a special license plate to be designed by the Department of Motor Vehicle that must be registered and displayed on the offender’s vehicle.
a.. For too long child sex predators have been stalking our children, it’s now time we know where they are.
b.. An easy identifiable license plate will not only be a red flag for parents, but we can teach young children to avoid these vehicles and drivers at all cost.

a.. Wisconsin, Ohio, and Alabama have considered legislation requiring sexual offenders to have special license plates on their car denoting their sexual offender status.
a.. All high-risk, repeat sex offenders must register all Internet domain and chat room names with the authorities.
a.. Law enforcement officers can then monitor those domain and chat room names to ensure that the sex offender is not committing another crime through the Internet.
b.. Failure to register domain and chat room names would result in [fine? imprisonment?]
b.. Before leaving prison, all male, high-risk, repeat sex offenders that are older than 21 and have targeted a child younger than 12 would be chemically castrated.
a.. Castration may prevent these sex offenders from harming more children.
b.. For the liberal groups that will claim that this is cruel and unusual punishment; I say so is the rape and victimization of our young children. It is my job to see that children have a safe environment.
c.. Ten states have enacted or are considering enacting similar legislation. Louisiana enacted this legislation in June of 2008 and Europe is also debating this concept.
c.. It will be an additional penalty for a sexual offender to provide a cell phone to his or hers victim without the victim’s parental consent.
a.. Sexual offenders that target pre-teen and teenage girls often hook their victim by giving the girl a cell phone.
b.. There is no reason why a child should have a cell phone given to them by a non-family member that the child’s parents know nothing about.

Miscellaneous

a.. Sexual offenders, especially those involved in child molestation, often have a high recidivism rate, and are never rehabilitated. Their sex crimes often escalate to include murder.
b.. Sex offenders often target children under 2 years of age because they can’t talk very well, making it less likely for the offender to be caught.
c.. Lawmakers must stand up for kids who are victims of sexual offences because we have the power to protect them.”

Representative John C. Atkins
41st District – Delaware House of Representatives

As much as I agree with taking a stand, there is a website http://desexoffender.dsp.delaware.gov/SexOffenderPublic/ where you can search sex offenders.  You can also view photos of sex offenders in your area and those who are wanted for failing to register.  If you are truly worried about sex offenders, have your children go through pictures like these.  This bill also does nothing to protect against those who haven’t been caught yet.  Of course, because if they haven’t been caught how can you punish them? What I am getting at here is the reason Bradley was able to harm so many people is because he had not been caught yet.

An even worse thought occurs to me.  Castration may stop certain elements of the human body from working, but does it stop the mind? Does it stop a sick, demented man from using something else around him to violate a child?  Or even stop a man from killing a child because he is unable to get any other physical release?

I am simply saying here that as much as I want Bradley to be in prison for the rest of his life, not in solitary, but in with the general population where they can do to that man everything he deserves, I don’t want people to enact laws such as this and then assume all sex offenders have been taken care of.  Laws such as this will not stop people determined to hurt children.  I would think it would only make us more complacent in our children’s safety.

I am sure I will get a lot of angry emails about this so please remember, I am not justifying anyone’s actions or blaming anyone other than Bradley.  I do not think Atkins is trying to take advantage of us, but I am reminded of something a great man said. “They who would give up essential liberty for temporary security deserve neither liberty or security.”

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One thought on “Happy Holidays and Sad Sussex Thoughts

  1. Thought provoking Angel…although it mostly sounds like a good piece of legislation, I agree that it may not be much of a deterrent for the sick mind of a pedophile who hasn’t been caught. I have however, always thought castration for repeat offenders to be exactly what they need so that another child never suffer what their previous victims have. That opinion is based on the supposition that castration removes sexual desire. As you said, it would not prevent the undiscovered pedophile from following their sick desires. I agree that the thought of consequences probably does not work with this type of offender and the tendency of the public to let down their guard could be realized. Nonetheless, I think I favor most of this proposed legislation with reservations.
    The license plates and stamping bothers me though…a slippery slope? There is, like you stated, plenty of information out there if you take advantage of it.

    Like

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