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The ruling that changed everything (and nothing at all)

By John P . . . On June 19th, 2017, the Supreme Court of the United States issued a ruling that was read and noticed by a relatively small segment of the population. Packingham v. North Carolina overturned an oppressive state law that had made it a felony for anyone registered as a sexual offender to access social media sites…

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The real danger in stranger-danger

By Lenore Skenazy . . . This summer in India, two dozen innocent people died at the hands of mobs convinced that they were meting out justice to kidnappers. One was a software engineer beaten to death after giving chocolates to children outside a school. One was a 65-year-old woman who got lost on a trip to a temple with her family…

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Once a sex offender always a sex offender — even beyond death?

  By Sandy . . . Who was Benjamin Gran? Registered sex offender sentenced to a lifetime of supervised release after he was caught with a massive amount of child pornography; Autistic young man caught in a “witch hunt” after being duped by an unrepentant pedophile; Third fatality in the deadly Amtrak derailment; Member of the Special Olympics team; Member of…

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“Sex offense is the one crime that you can never pay for”

By Sandy . . . Some of you will remember a story from a little over a year ago about a registrant named Daniel Silverman. Dan was convicted of a sex offense in 2009, served 13 months, and has been out in society since late 2010. Based on polygraphs and his probation officer’s recommendations, his probation was terminated early. Knowing…

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Defining terms. What exactly is “sexual misconduct” and who decides?

By Robin . . . Every day brings new charges, it seems, of sexual misconduct on the part of a man in a prominent position. No area is safe. Among the accused are those in the entertainment and media fields, political leaders, sports figures, and even a past president or two. Like a tornado spinning off multiple, smaller tornados, every…

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Oh look! Is that another sex trafficker?

By Lenore Skenazy . . . We are in the midst of a massive mommy moral panic. Across the country, mothers are writing breathless accounts on Facebook of how sex traffickers nearly snatched their children at Target/Ikea/the grocery store. While at Sam’s Club, one such post explains, “a man came up to us and asked if the empty cart nearby was…

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For a registered sex offender, how much rehabilitation is enough?

By Sandy . . . Three years ago, a spokesperson for NARSOL, then RSOL, was interviewed for an article about a young man named Guy Hamilton-Smith. In 2011 Guy had graduated from law school in the top third of his class, applied to take the Kentucky state bar exam, and, in spite of numerous awards, supporters, and testimonials on his…

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KY: Federal judge strikes internet restrictions, online identifiers

By Bruce Schreiner . . . LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Kentucky went too far in restricting internet access for registered sex offenders, violating free-speech rights by clamping down on their use of social media, a federal judge ruled Friday. In striking down the restrictions, U.S. District Judge Gregory Van Tatenhove said [the] state law could keep sex offenders from participating…

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NARSOL calls on Zuckerberg, Facebook to change policy

By Robin . . . Having already contacted Mark Zuckerberg by letter dated June 27, 2017, NARSOL has now released a nationwide press release hoping to bring additional pressure upon the social media giant to cease its nearly nine-year-old practice of barring registered citizens from creating or maintaining Facebook user accounts. While it’s important to note that the Supreme Court’s recent decision…

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Packingham: Unanimous Court strikes NC’s social media ban

By Robin . . . In a broadly worded opinion penned by Justice Kennedy, a unanimous Supreme Court has closed the door on laws restricting access to the internet and social media forums by Americans who were convicted of a crime but who are no longer serving a criminal sentence. In reversing the N.C. Supreme Court’s decision in Packingham v.…

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