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I worked in a jail for 8 years and saw many innocent people convicted of being sex offenders and sent to prison. It seems one only has to be accussed of molesting and then it is up to him to prove he is innocent, and attorneys tell me you can't prove a negative. It seems to be the scapegoat of a society that uses young female bodies for entertainment in all media and to sell everything. I may love pornography and lust after cheerleaders but "at least I'm not a (convicted) sex offender." The slogan for men with low self esteem. (Not that only men are sex offenders.)
I saw people who needed to be in prison, who raped and murdered their victim, who had ongoing adult relationships with a girl relative and not get that it is wrong, I saw previous offenders who reoffended after 8 years. But most had gotten drunk and innappropriately touched a teenager and felt terribly guilty and remoseful ever since. They would be the first to get help, offer restitution and make sure they never did it again. But they went to prison for 6 years instead, their family would lose its home and everyone ended up ruined and bitter. By the time they get to treatment they are hardened.
I saw so many people who were not dangerous go to prison that the growing prison industry would be a joke if it wasn't so tragic. We are mindlessly filling prisons when community supervision would be adequate. Our school children and mentally ill are suffering, more victims of our love affair with tough on crime instead of smart on crime. Persons in community supervision work and pay taxes instead of living off our taxes. They go to treatment and get to practice making changes while being supervised.
A small percent of sex offenders are preditory and we could do a better job with them if we didn't act like everyone needed to be watched like that. Quit reacting to every incident with a new law and let's do the smart things to make real protection and prevention.
posted 4 years, 2 months ago
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