The Associated Press has a story today about an effort by convicted child molesters to sue the state of North Carolina to allow them to go to church.
At least, that’s the way the article is framed. What a shame, a person is being denied his right to freely worship! Call the ACLU! (Don’t worry, they’re already involved. Isn’t it a shame that the only time you hear about the ACLU’s willingness to stand up for religious expression is only when it involves a child molester?)
What the issue here is whether a law passed during the 2008 session of the legislature in the bill known as Jessica’s Law has the authority to prevent sex offenders from being on the premises of a building that has child care facilities. In this case, law enforcement officers determined that a church that has a nursery would be the type of area considered to be covered by the law and arrested a convicted child molester that had frequented a church.
So who is standing up for convicted perverts that want to continue to be around children?
Well, of course the ACLU is on the scene and involved. So is Human Rights Watch and an anti death penalty legal group from Atlanta named the Southern Center for Human Rights.
So, where were all of these bleeding hearts when these child molesters stole some kid’s innocence? How are they keeping other children safe from these predators that have a documented pattern of behavior to molest children? By filing lawsuits against the state?
Sexually based offenders are unlike the average law breakers. The rate of recidivism among convicted sex offenders is high. Department of Justice statistics show that 5% of convicted sex offenders will re-offend in the first 3 years after they get out of prison. The very nature of the crime, coupled with the odds of committing another sex crime require lawmakers to treat sex offenders differently from your run of the mill criminal.
Best line of the article comes from Senator David Hoyle (D-Gaston):
“I’m not denying him the right to go to church. He denied himself that,” said state Sen. David Hoyle, the Democrat who sponsored the North Carolina bill. “If they are a convicted pedophile, they have given up a lot of their rights.”
Meanwhile, you may rest easy at night knowing that the ACLU, HRW and the SCHR are on duty, standing up for perverts everywhere.