W John Martius Jr
The registry disgusts me on many levels. As do, the “for-profit” prisons around the country. I am not a registrant but do not understand the continued punishment of people who have served their time, paid their fines and jumped through every hoop society throws in front of them. It is an immoral society that “brands” people especially for those unfortunately caught up in police sting operations and not actually committed a sex crime.
The damage it does to families is astounding, unrelenting and extremely easy to measure. The stigma attached prevents the average American appalled by these tactics and registries prevents any calm, fact-based discussion on the topic. Jobs are jeopardized, family/social ostracizing, re-entry to society is next to impossible for those so marked with the red letters “SO”.
I am very much ashamed of this society, legislators, prosecutors and extremely punitive judges. But most importantly, I am appalled at law enforcement sitting quietly by as they witness and partake in the excessive punishment of those trying to take advantage of the boasted American “second chance” society. It is not true for those branded sex offenders – rightly or wrongly. It doesn’t matter. I could go on-and-on with facts and figures… but legislators will not listen, police will continue to conduct entrapping sting operations, politically aspired prosecutors will continue to pursue maximum sentences and continued punishment and lazy judges will continue to let them get away with it. I lament my dire outlook, but it is difficult to see anything positive given the current political climate.