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Do we need another way to track sex offenders?

Today, the San Mateo County Sheriff's Office announced it was launching "OffenderWatch," a brand new way to be scared of your neighbors.

Simply go to the Sheriff's Office website and click the link that allows you to enter your address -- or any address in the county -- and see instantly how many registered sex offenders live within a two-mile radius. It's updated continually. You can register for email alerts, so that you are notified whenever a registered sex offender moves into your neighborhood. Here's the link:

www.smcsheriff.com

I have just one question: Why?

What, exactly are you to do with this information? Do you commit these names and faces to memory? What are you supposed to do when you meet one of these guys on the street? Do you instruct your kids to stay away from these homes? Are we supposed to keep an eye on them in some way? Should we organize patrols to watch them? Should we be careful not to hire them? Should we make sure they remain outsiders for the rest of their days?

Don't get me wrong. I understand that sex crimes are uniquely terrible things. I'm aware that some categories of sex offenders are more likely to be repeat offenders than some other types of criminals. I absolutely do not diminish the nature of the crimes and the wrongs that these men (and they are largely men) have committed. I just don't feel any safer knowing where they live.

For its part, the Sheriff's Office is just trying to make this information more reliable and available. It's already out there. State law stipulates that sex offenders register and such databases exist elsewhere.

We should all be vigilant, particularly parents. We know not to let our children stray too far and we teach them to avoid strangers. I just don't see how a map like this serves justice in a civil society predicated on presumed innocence, where those found guilty of the most heinous crimes are allowed to serve their time and rebuild their lives.


Comments

How about another look at the underlying theme here?

Homosexuality.

Acceptable or tolerable behavior? Where does it cross this moralistic line?

Pedophilia and the seduction of minors.

That should bring out the left-wing mantra of the 'hatespeech' of right-wingers and the Tea Party.

Tootles!


With respect, and I won't let this line continue, what the heck does pedophilia have to do with homosexuality? There is no link whatsoever between sexual orientation and pedophilia. Anonymous blather aside. So let's move past that right now.


Well phrased question "what are we do with the information?"

The answer may vary with each individual, but to me the key is that the public has a right to know. It certainly might be useful to a potential home buyer in making a decision about which neighborhood to buy in.

Why sex crime notification is more available than information on released burglers, murderers, bank robbers and arsonists is perhaps another question worth exploring.


It is a good list to choose from when one feels the need to take revenge: -- Web Link

Females are far more likely to be molested by males than boys are by either males or females.

Why would anybody make this an issue about homosexuality other than to score points against homosexuals?

Sex of any kind between consenting adults is nobodies business. We don't need to regulate sex except between minors and adults.


"Anonymous blather aside".

Putting aside "anonymous", let us look at "blather".

"Blather" would have us ignore the "orientation" of the molesters' of young boys (minors).

"Blather" would have us ignore the psychopaths' who sodomize children (male or female).

Censorship by the media at its finest.

Tootles!


Clay writes,  >>"I just don't see how a map like this serves justice in a civil society predicated on presumed innocence, where those found guilty of the most heinous crimes are allowed to serve their time and rebuild their lives."<<

I was going to say the usual bit about the rate of recidivism in child molesters the worst, which justifies the continued spotlight, but just learned otherwise through this WSJ article. But considering the damage they do to innocents, well, IMO... too bad!

Web Link

"...existing research raises tough questions about the relative danger child molesters pose to society. Their likelihood of being convicted for a crime after release is much lower than average for all criminals released from prison, and even for all sex offenders, at least in the short term, as measured by a Bureau of Justice Statistics studyand others. Yet their crimes, when they do repeat child abuse, are unusually harmful, and their victims particularly vulnerable. Does that justify the closer monitoring of child molesters after release, compared with other criminals? Dr. Doren isn’t sure, pointing out, for example, that convicted rapists are more likely to re-offend in the years immediately after release, and more likely to commit other violent crimes. “If we’re concerned about violence generically, it’s rapists we should be concerned about” in the short term, he said."


A permanent brand in the middle of their forehead works for me.


Should we also ignore the orientation of those who molest young girls(minors)?

Censorship by the media at its finest.

Who censored what? Just because Clay disagrees does not mean you were censored. In fact, your spew is still here for all to see.

Blather is blather and you are blathering.

Male relatives are the ones who abuse the most and overwhelmingly it is girls who are molested.

So what is it about the orientation of Fathers, Brothers, Uncles, and Grandpas that make them abuse little girls?

Censorship by the media at its finest. -- After performing the Bob Marley song "War," singer Sinéad O'Connor created one of the most notorious SNL moments of all time. The bald beauty started her own protest against the Catholic Church by changing lyrics in the song to talk about child abuse and tearing up a photo of Pope John Paul II at the end of the song. As she told the solemn crowd to "fight the real enemy," the camera panned away. Sinéad O'Connor was never invited back after the infamous incident, which was edited out on repeats of the show. -- Web Link

Who was the Media protecting? Homosexuals or Child Raping Priests?

We live in a nation where Joe Paterno is given a pass by millions even though he did not know what to do when informed a child was sodomized in the shower. Was it the homosexual aspect of the whole sordid affair that caused the cover up or the fear of loss of money?

Men raping children has always been a fact of life. Even when they lynched men for having sex with men. Many of our founding fathers enjoyed raping their young slaves.

Roger Clemens was taking 15 year old girls on the road with him. The puke is still a hero to many.


Direct link to search your area: Web Link

How lovely. There are six offenders within two miles of me, five of which are for lewd acts with a child 14 or under. The other violent rape.


>>Sex of any kind between consenting adults is nobodies business.<<

True.

And sex between consenting adults does not get anybodies name on a list of sex offenders.


But sex between the same sex puts folks on the same list as pedophiles. Ask tootles.

And sex between consenting adults does not get anybodies name on a list of sex offenders.

Not as of late, in a America, but:

We all might be Nazis if not for Alan Turing. He got on a list for having consensual sex with an adult. They chemicaly castrated him: -- Web Link

Don't be gay in Uganda: -- Web Link

If not for the Supreme Court, the laws against same sex sex in Alabama, Mississippi, and Texas.

There are lots of Muslim and Chritian bigots who would have homosexuals executed: -- Web Link

You can bet this lady has a list: -- Web Link


Being the nosy type I looked at the 10 reported offenders with addresses in half moon bay. Web Link

Something obvious jumped out from the stats: a clear correlation of type of offense vs the offender's height. I'll let the sociologists try to explain it. Below 5 ft 7 they assaulted 100% children and minors, average height assaulted a mixture, and tall offenders raped adults. Breakdown:

5 ft 4 to 6 inches: 4 molested kids under 14 years. 1 under 18.

5 ft 7 to 10 inches: 1 under 14, 1 under 18, and 1 adult rape.

6 ft 0 inches: 2 adult rapes.


Between Trolltracker and Uffish, we got some serious, first class research happening. Short homosexuals = pedophiliac child molesters


Well Frank why do you think the shorter guys in HMB go for the kiddies? Or is scientific curiosity foreign to you and best left to others?


I'll never forget when Pres Bill Clinton was going to a fund raiser at some fat cat's house in Nob Hill San Francisco. Some neighbors took it upon themselves to put posters on phone poles saying "Beware! Sex offender headed our way!" Secret service took them down in a hurry.


Hahaha! Good for the neighbors. Hope it got back to the Clintons.


Reason:

One issue is definition of "sex offender". That includes an 18 year old who has sex with their 17 year old boy or girlfriend. It's statutory rape and, if convicted, they end-up on the wall of shame and, with this new info service, on everyone's list of neighborhood monsters. Grouping them with serial rapists and pedophiles is simply Draconian, yet, that's what happens.

Data:

The assertion about which sex commits what crime is specious. Men are far less likely to report domestic violence or sexual assault than women, so statistics regarding these crimes are seriously skewed. We've seen enough female teachers, e.g., charged with rape of male students to know that sort of sexual assault happens, but the patent response is more of a "way to go, dude" to the young boy than outrage at the rapist. This attitude supports the idiocy of people like TrollTracker that only males can rape males and, therefore, pedophiles are all homosexuals. This simplistic, illogical sort of conclusion is the hallmark of many social conservatives.

Practical application:

Lists like the one Clay mentions are only as effective as Law Enforcement and parole officers who track the criminals. Unless you put an irremovable GPS tracker on everyone of these criminals, or something similar like Francis' barbaric suggestion, you have no real confidence you know who your dealing with. Pity the person who moves into an apartment or house vacated by one of these criminals and someone like Francis or Trolltracker comes at them with a branding iron or a pair of scissors providing "vigilante justice".

Enforcement and recidivism:

The way America deals with serious sexual predators is ineffective. Interviews with offenders indicate there is no cure for their issues, castration included. The issue isn't, at it's core, about sex - it's about power. If I were benevolent dictator of the US, I would put these people somewhere they could not escape - like an island surrounded by gunboats - and leave them there for life, able to carry-out their lives away from the rest of us.

To Clays most serious point - "What, exactly are you to do with this information?" - we should not do anything with it because we are not the police. Having lived in this hamlet for a couple decades, the "gossip fence" communication that rules our little village will guarantee that something, at some point, will go horribly wrong as a result. We already all know who the drunks are, who the cheaters are, who the liars are, who the drug addicts are, whose kids are smart or stupid or botched and broken. Nothing good has come out of us knowing any of that. Fantasizing that having this new information about who the criminals are will somehow help us is just more fools paradise and more cannon fodder for the gossips who rule the joint.


Clay,

I certainly see your point, and agree with a large part of it. Surveillance of sex offenders does little to protect potential victims without other coordinated programs. I don't, however, understand your point that it makes us fearful of our neighbors. If anything, it made me feel a little better to know how few convicted sex offenders live around me.

I also understand what you're getting at with the idea of a society based on presumed innocence and a belief that people should be allowed to rebuild their lives after serving their time. The point that is missed, however, is that registration as a sex offender is a part of the penalty assessed. The concept is not unlike prison itself, both seek to place a divide between an offender and the general population. For registration to work, though, the list must be readily available to all, and I appreciate the SMCSOs efforts in ensuring that it is.

Of course the failure of all of this - and what's ultimately a much larger discussion - is that our prison system does little, if anything at all, to correct behavior and the root causes of behavior. Whether someone is kept in jail for a decade, or kept in jail for two years and required to register for a decade following their release, the chances of them receiving the help they need is very small. Our prison and court system are quite obviously in need of a substantial overhaul, both to protect citizens in general as well as to better serve those who choose to commit crimes.

Finally, I want to applaud the way you handled the left turn at crazy town that this thread took. The irrelevant and hateful comments of one poster ruined what was otherwise a great discussion topic. The silver lining is that this poster has revealed just a little too much about himself, and I'm sure for most has made his presence here beyond irrelevant. The accusation of censorship has been equally as foolish, since the poster has much more effectively censored himself. Leaving his post up for the world to see helps us all remember how important it is to standup for the rights and dignity of those around us.


^^^ or something similar like Francis' barbaric suggestion, ^^^

Some people think pedophiles should bear a visible scar to remind them of the scars they left on their victims. Others like Coasters pity them and work to ensure they can easily hide among us.


Francis stated,

Some people think pedophiles should bear a visible scar to remind them of the scars they left on their victims. Others like Coasters pity them and work to ensure they can easily hide among us.

To quote the HoneyBadger "YOU MADE THAT UP!!!"

Nowhere did I say that I have pity for pedophiles.

What I inferred was that an 18 year old having sex with a 17 year old is most likely not pedophilia yet is officially categorized as a sex crime.

What I stated was that the sort of barbarism and vigilante justice that some endorse is not the answer and a risk when we share this sort of information publicly. I was, in essence, agreeing with Clay's thoughtful editorial.

With regards to "Some people think pedophiles should bear a visible scar".... That "some people" seemed to be you. Own it f you believe it. If it was a dark jest and you're really not serious about it, then say so. In either case, take ownership.


To Uffish:

Using a sample of 5 is not the best basis for making assertions correlating height to crime. It's the sort of logic that led to the Nazi's Hereditary Health Court and mass sterilizations.

On the bright side, maybe we've finally found a real plank in the Tea Party's platform! Eugenics am us.


^^^ What I inferred was that an 18 year old having sex with a 17 year old is most likely not pedophilia yet is officially categorized as a sex crime. ^^^

So what? That doesn't entitle you to take gratuitous swipes at other posters that answered the question asked by the OP. (For the record, I happen to agree that too many people are classified as "sex offenders.")

^^^ Nowhere did I say that I have pity for pedophiles. ^^^

Oh of course not! You just attack those that have no pity for them, then argue that you too have no pity for them.

While you're handing out advice, I have some for you -- make your point without mentioning other posters.


Don't get short with me, Coasters! (get it?)

Apparently anyone who notices anything interesting about -anything- had better not say it or else people like you will find a way to label them as Nazis. Even though YOU personally injected race into the picture with your pathological "eugenics" fixation.

Then trying to tie sex offenders to fiscal conservatives? Talk about Crazytown USA.

You've also just stereotyped thousands of criminologists, psychologists, sociologists and general researchers. Nice work champ.

Thought police at their worst.

It might be faster if you just tell us what is certified as acceptable to think about, even our lighthearted and neutral observations.

Awaiting your very -short- list....

.

PS here are your top TEN sex offenders for HMB again: Web Link

You'll also find that none of them can be excised for Coasters excuse of being 18 with a 17 yo girlfriend. These men are all over 30, many middle aged.


For anyone new to Talkabout, Coasters rarely misses an opportunity to try to personally malign people he disagrees with politically.

Woe betide the poor unassuming registered Republican who lets that dark detail slip into Coasters' hands. He's on a higher mission and anyone not with him is agin' him. The end justifies the means. Seek and destroy! Major Plaster would be proud, LOL...


Uffish stated,

"Then trying to tie sex offenders to fiscal conservatives?"

I believe you're referring to my statement that, "This simplistic, illogical sort of conclusion is the hallmark of many social conservatives."

That's SOCIAL, not FISCAL.

That's not a small detail, Uff, it's two entirely different political philosophies, sometimes joined at the hip. I'm a fiscal conservative who believes social liberalism is far cheaper than social conservatism.

My statement was with regards to the lack of logic in thinking pedophile=homosexual, not that some brand of conservatism is populated with sex offenders. I think you know that.


Francis stated:

While you're handing out advice, I have some for you -- make your point without mentioning other posters.

Is that your policy and practice, Francis? You don't mention or disparage other posters?


Nice try Coaster. You said Tea Party. That is about fiscal conservatism.

Do NOT accuse me of saying anything against gays. I did not.

Run for council, you'd fit right in.


I wasn't trying anything, Uff. The comment about homosexuality was in response to Troll's comment, not anything you said. See, with you I need to be very specific about mentioning who I'm referring to and Francis thinks mentioning posters by name is rude. You guys need to cut back on the caffeine or something.

But we digress. The post was about public identification and addresses of people convicted of sex crimes and whether or not that's of any use and, especially asking what purpose that serves with regards to what the public can DO about it.

Nothing, that's what.


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