Author Topic: Political Science, California Prop 83  (Read 668 times)

Offline Lois

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Political Science, California Prop 83
« on: October 14, 2006, 04:43:25 PM »
So I'm sitting down with the absentee ballot and we have Prop 83

1.  Increases penalties for violent and habitual sex offenders and child molesters.
     Okay, so far so good.

2. Prohibits registered sex offenders from residing within 2,000 feet of any school or park.

    Any idea what this is in city blocks?  I'm not really certain how far this is, but it does not seem overly burdensome, so ok.

3. Requires Lifetime Global Positioning System monitoring of FELONY registered sex offenders.

    So why does this one specify felony and not the others?  Not too sure about this one.  It sounds good, but once a guy serves his time haven't they paid their debt to society?  What does this entail?  Will it mean always wearing a bulky device that will prevent the guy from getting a job?  If he can't get a job, isn't that an incentive to go back to jail?  Mmmmmm.

4. Expands definition of a sexually violent predator.
   (Changes number of priors from two to one.  Crimes committed while still juvenile will now be counted under this law.)

   Not sure about this.  Does "one" show habitual behavior?  Should one offense mark you for life? 

5. Changes current two-year involuntary civil commitment for a sexually violent predator to an indeterminate commitment, subject to annual review by the Director of Mental Health and subsequent ability of sexually violent predator to petition court for sexually violent predator's conditional release or unconditional discharge.

    WOW!  Is this signaling the change of our legal system from a penal (punishment) system to a preventive one?  This could be really revolutionary.  I've often thought the primary purpose of prison should be to prevent criminals from having access to committing crimes against citizens, and not to punish the criminals. 
   Actually, this trend has been going on for some time, starting with the three strikes laws.  After the third violent offense they lock you up and throw away the key, so are additional laws making it even tougher for sex criminals necessary?  I'm not sure about this, but I DO want to punish VIOLENT sex offenders and child molesters, so I'm thinking I'll vote yes.

But then I start reading the argument against this proposition, and it claims this law would:

- Prohibit thousands of misdemeanor offenders (distributing obscene materials) from living near a school or a park for the rest of their lives.
  What?!?!?!  This could be me for posting a rape story!

- Impose lifetime GPS monitoring on first time offenders convicted of non-violent offenses.  For instance a 19 year old boy could be subjected to a lifetime of monitoring after a conviction for having sexual contact with a 17 year old girlfriend.

  Now this just isn't right.

- Impose lifetime residence restrictions and GPS monitoring on thousands of people who have lived law abiding lives for years or even decades.

  What?!?!?!  If this is true it sounds like an ex-post facto law with regards to a penalty.  Isn't this prohibited by the constitution?

So what do you think?  Should I vote yes or no?
So much oppression in our culture is based on shame about sex: the oppression of women, of cultural minorities, oppression in the name of the (presumably asexual) family, oppression of sexual minorities. We are all oppressed. We have all been taught, one way or another, that our desires, our bodies, our sexualities, are shameful. What better way to defeat oppression than to get together in communities and celebrate the wonders of sex?
The Ethical Slut: A Guide to Infinite Sexual Possibilities