Originally created 07/06/06

New sex offender law is a waste

Regarding this new Georgia law forcing registered sex offenders to move more than 1,000 feet from the nearest school or school bus stop: How much money was wasted during the bureaucratic enactment of this legislation from bill to law, and how much will be wasted enforcing it? Millions? Tens of millions, in Georgia taxpayers' dollars?

For what? A law that assumes registered sex offenders are lazy? Don't have cars? Don't have legs? Aren't able to walk 1,001 feet to the nearest school or school bus stop?

I believe any master-degreed psychologist or higher will tell you 99.9 percent of sex offenders have deeply rooted psychological problems that are not within their means to control without extensive help and/or oversight from a licensed psychologist or psychiatrist.

Instead of wasting millions of tax dollars enacting and enforcing laws that assume sex offenders will tire and fall asleep before arriving at their next victim's hangout, wouldn't requiring psychiatric oversight for registered sex offenders be an all-around more rewarding deterrent? Doesn't it seem like sex crimes actually would be deterred if licensed psychiatrists constantly knew the mental state of registered sex offenders?

Think of this new way of dealing with sex offenders as "psychiatric parole." If their psychiatrists think it necessary, sex offenders go immediately back to the state mental hospital or medical prison, just like a regular parole violator.

Aside from that idea, what about simply posting a neighborhood adult at all school bus stops when children are present (a crossing-guard type, perhaps), or any unsupervised area where the weak wait or wander? That also would be cheap, possibly even free.

Whatever happens, I think it's horribly, tragically mistaken to believe one less sex offense was going to occur because a person of ill intent now has one extra foot to travel.

Come on, Georgia, please think about it.

Nathan Kirby, Augusta


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