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All I know is that my son, now 20, is sitting in prison for having consensual sex with a younger girl he did not know well. Although this is not the most moral of acts, I don't believe it should have resulted in three years in prison (the reason it was only three years is because the DA was actually "fair"), five years of post prison supervision, and a minimum of fifteen years (or possibly more if the laws continue to change) of registry. Yes, there are bad people out there, there are people who are very sick and need help/therapy, but there are also many, many more people who simply made a terrible choice. The way Oregon's laws are currently written, it is very difficult to make judgments (you know judgements, what we actually pay judges to do) on a case by case basis. My son's second biggest mistake was being honest with police about his actions. I always taught him to tell the truth. He did, and it created an open and shut case for the DA. As an 18 year old he had some idea that it is not a good idea to have sex with girls you do not know and are not in relationship with, but he had no idea that the choice he made was a Measure 11 crime, with 75 months mandatory sentencing, and a felony rape conviction on his record for the rest of his life (in oregon the term "statuory rape" is not used). We are talking about a good kid, with a bright future, not the "kind of kid" you would imagine this sort of thing happening to. This has made me realize that these things can happen to any family at any time. We need some calm, precise, helpful and well thought out laws made. Not some knee jerk, politically driven, high on a horse "kill them all and let god sort them out" approach.
As for protecting our children, it is our job as parents to be open and honest with our kids. Do some research and talk to them. I believe the statistic is something like 80% of actual molestations are done by somebody YOU KNOW and that is close to your family.
posted 3 years, 4 months ago
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