Saturday, November 25, 2006

PC News Herald-Protecting Sex Abusers while Targeting Whistleblowers?

Port Clinton News Herald Sympathetic To Sexual Abusers?
Tuesday, May 31, 2005, 03:38 PM
Port Clinton News Herald Sympathetic To The Plight Of Sexual Abusers?

Never thought I’d see the day.

A newspaper is endorsing the right of those convicted of sex crimes to “get on with their lives once they’ve paid their penalty.” Of course this is a necessary aspect of the criminal justice system – bringing closure to criminal matters when jail time or probation has already been served.

How ironic that the newspaper is advocating on behalf of those who are convicted of sexually abusing children – but they won’t advocate closure on behalf of an attorney who defends the victims of those crimes.

The Port Clinton News Herald has the audacity to characterize this writer’s articles as “venomous” and “personal” while they turn a blind eye to the unfairness in the court system to which they seem so friendly.

Sex-offender notice demands public fairness
The effort to make sex offender information more available to the general public is a good step, but carries with it responsibility on the part of the general public.

Nationwide, there simply have been too many cases of repeat offenders, making it crucial that parents and potential victims be aware of possible dangerous individuals in their neighborhoods.

But this brings with it a need for appropriate behavior by the public in general. Individuals convicted of crimes have a right to try to get on with their lives once they have paid their penalty. Their neighbors shouldn't become vigilantes, exacting extended punishment.

Earlier this month, the Community Notification Program, an Internet-based alert system that notifies residents whenever a registered sex-offender moves within a mile of their residence, went into effect in every county in Ohio.

The system tells residents how many offenders live in their neighborhood and provides a map to show exactly where they live. Along with the offender's name, a photo and the charge are also listed. When a sex offender moves into the area, the system will automatically notify nearby residents through an e-mail.

This is a good thing. The public has a right to know of such possible dangers.

But this is potentially valuable information that should be used properly.

It carries with it an element of responsibility on the part of the general public.

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