Daniel Silverman, these facts are true, and as a matter of fact, most comments posted here are valid and true grievances. It seems like the best thing we can all do is educate the public, call the justice system out for it espousing the aim of its jail framework as intending to punish offenders of all categories and types and rehabilitate them as well. Even the process of sentencing should embed within, a pathway to restoration of full citizenship rights, esp. for nonviolent and less ‘heinous’ crimes.
In practice, none of these things are the outcomes, except lifetime punishment, and perpetual repunishment. Would we continue to traumatize? With empathy towards victims, real or incidental, do we not believe in the potential for humans, even those who err, to change their lives and improve? Once an offender, always an offender? If so then, regarding this country’s past, ‘once a racist, always a racist’?
Do we not allow room for change? Ever? A lifetime of registry is ridiculous especially 1st time offenders, or low level classifications. If not, then what does that say about the so-called progress we have made as a nation? People’s personal beliefs and perspectives are just that, in terms of policy, for if no majority aligns with these beliefs, but for evidence and data informed decisions, no personal opinion should shape actions or laws.
There are narrow-minded people everywhere, but policy should be shaped by data and consensus. And if consensus conflicts with data, we must inform and enlighten others until they both make sense. Power in the hands of a few is potentially or perhaps inherently dangerous. Policy is public, perspectives are personal.