- Dear Stop It Now!,
- COLUMN: Georgia City Wrong to Target Sex Offenders in New ‘Homelessness Ordinance” - AllOnGeorgia
- Sex Offender Registration and Failure to Register FAQs
Now, to the merits of the ordinance …. The emergency ordinance was put in place to allow the council time to properly advertise and pass a more permanent ordinance. Usually, emergency ordinances are reserved for natural disasters or extenuating circumstances of a manmade disaster.
Arguably, it is because laws on the books restrict where sex offenders can live and a criminal background that can often be a hurdle for employment. This is a conversation that partially reared its ugly head when reports of cities and counties requiring sex offenders to report to a secure location on Halloween came to light. So as long as these offenders are being released into society, we have to discuss what to do with them. Since , state law has prohibited convicted sex offenders from working or living within 1, feet of a church, school, park, or other place where children gather. Whether you are talking about a metro area or a rural area, not enough housing will always lead to homelessness.
Do we want these convicts living under a bridge or do we want them gainfully employed somewhere and contributing to society? Do we want them focused on rebuilding and re-entering regular life or do we want them bored, living outdoors, and willing to do whatever it takes to survive? Is the end goal to eradicate sex offenders from a city, or county, or state as a whole?
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We have to talk about practicality of what makes sense and what can actually be enforced. Does this ordinance meet that threshold? And just like every other law, this one has unintended consequences. The city is criminalizing homelessness. By criminalizing homelessness, those who are out on parole or probation will be reincarcerated if they are arrested. Another thing to consider is whether or not something like this can hold up in court.
The same ordinance passed in Grants Pass, Oregon as is working its way through the courts right now under constitutional right violations — specifically the 8th and 14th Amendments. In September, a federal court of appeals ruled that the Constitution forbids cities from prosecuting homeless persons for sleeping in public places when they have no alternative.
But I can assert that this type of ordinance is NOT the answer. One of the men under the bridge has reportedly lived there for decades, without incident. As evidenced by those voicing concerns over the ability to track homeless sex offenders, the cleanliness of fishing sources, the dangers of cooking under a bridge, and any of the other reasons mustered to try to tip the scales of public opinion to fear, it appears that council members and the community in Ringgold may not even know the question.
How does this blatant banishment of individuals not on parole or probation NOT seem outrageous under any circumstances? Is the government not interested in protecting me and my children from all sorts of crime? Again, are you implying it is acceptable to be anti one select group of citizens with a certain criminal conviction? If so, why? Again, kudos on your unpopular and brave effort.
Perhaps you could expand your analysis to a more fundamental level in a future submission. Jessica, you have written a nice piece on this topic, but you need to go a level deeper. I can help.
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There is no need to treat those who have been convicted of a sexual crime as lepers and isolate them from society; as a group, they have an extremely low re-offense rate, in the single digits, lower than any other category of crime except murder. There is not a single study or piece of scholarly writing that supports the use of distance restrictions as effective public safety strategy; it is shown to be just the opposite.
Residency restrictions not only impact the ability to re-integrate and to be meaningfully employed, as you point out, but it also breaks up families, leaving children without a father in the home, which will then have an impact on the next generation and on the health of the society as a whole.
Thank you. Another thing is the effectiveness of residence restrictions on sexual recidivism. Despite popular opinion, recidivism among registered sex offenders is already lower than any other class of felon except murderers, and the overwhelming majority of that is parole, probation, or status offenses applicable only to registrants. There is absolutely nothing — no study, no research, no case — to show that residence restrictions reduce the already low recidivism of registered sex offenders.
Even for those registrants that have committed another sex offense, the new offense has never had any relation whatsoever to the offense and would not have been prevented had the accused lived somewhere else. The truth is the registrant is LESS likely to assault your children than your non-registered friends, neighbors, and family members. And forcing people to live under a bridge, no matter what their background, is not a reasonable length by any definition. You have far more housing options than that registrant does. Nearly all new sex crime is committed by first timers, i.
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Scrutinizing them so much accomplishes nothing in terms of prevention. Meanwhile, the new offenders take everyone by surprise. Maybe we should start thinking about what to watch for instead of who. The goal of the sex offender registry is to isolate and banish from society. Apparently the courts only require a theory of protection when passing laws that supposedly protect the public.
Dear Stop It Now!,
Even in the face of overt harm, the courts have ruled it is Constitutional because it might be rational. However, forcing a person to follow public safety laws that clearly are meant to take safety is illegal. I left the registry. It is an ex-post facto law that is only harmful to offenders.
The prohibition on ex-post facto laws was put into the Constitution in order to deny the State the ability to politicize the convicted. When a sentence is served, it is served and no State can pass laws against those convicted under theories of protection that only have the outcome of harm to those the laws target. Mind your own business. Quit thinking it is any of your business where people live or where they go. That will work wonders for everyone. They have gravely harmed America and it continues every day.
That is truly the only way to protect anyone. But those people are wrong.
COLUMN: Georgia City Wrong to Target Sex Offenders in New ‘Homelessness Ordinance” - AllOnGeorgia
Being listed or not is of no help or significance. That is truly the only way to protect your children. I was only slightly less vigilant with females. I can tell you first hand that the bridge that is being lived under is no where near anyone unless you go looking for the people camping you would not have a clue they was anyone living around… in my opinion unless they are committing a crime then they should have the right to do as they please.
The Federal Supreme court justices know very well that that the sex offender registry is prohibited by the constitution because it is ex post facto. And they know is illegal to pass an ex post facto law.
Sex Offender Registration and Failure to Register FAQs
But they are so evil they want to change the constitution to say what say what they want it to say , Rather than going by what the constitution really says. Sex crimes are tried in criminal court and punishment is rendered by the same, But the federal judges say that sex offences are a civil matter , and they reapply punishment on sex crimes that have already been paid. The Feds want their cake and eat it to. For anyone who wants to research recidivism for sex offenders in a comprehensive, rational manner, this link will provide you the gateway for the basis for finding a multitude of studies and statistics all from all over the spectrum.
Spoiler alert: registered sex offenders are not a threat that justifies extra supervision of any type. I would not be surprised if this new ordinance was inspired by the events in Miami FL, where residency restriction laws forced registered citizens to live under the Julia Tuttle Causeway in Biscayne Bay. That camp started in with 5 men as well and eventually grew to over a hundred.
Eventually, the camp was shuffled to other communities and the crisis in Miami exists to this day. Thank you for speaking the truth. The reality is that the ordinance is like the President…. If this was me, I would have a field day in defiance as well as blantent disregard and disrespect for the authority of the ordinance. The courts would have nothing to threaten me with. A stay in jail for 60 days plus the extra time for telling the officials to go screw themselves over my not paying their fine would also cost the city more than what they could ever get out of me….
These registries have resulted in bigger headaches than fixes. If you dont believe me, look up the Gordon and Cano case. All GPS monitoring does is shows where you are. It does not show what you are doing. If I was on the worthless registry I could easily get away with stuff Im not allowed to do.
For example, Registrants are not allowed to possess porn or hire a prostitute. Anyways, Gordon and Cano murdered 6 sex workers while monitored and the reason why they got caught was because they found the body of one. Thanks to forensics they identified when she died and where and using the registry found two individuals in the area of the sex worker at the time of death.