quote:CINCINNATI (Reuters) - Lawmakers in Ohio said on Wednesday they want to force convicted sex offenders to use a fluorescent-green license plate on their cars so they can be easily identified.
A Republican and a Democrat in the state legislature have joined forces to propose the law, which echoes measures in several U.S. states that require convicted drunken drivers to use a yellow, pink or red plate on their cars.
"The fluorescent-green license plate will make the most egregious sex offenders easily identifiable," state Democratic Rep. Michael DeBose said in a statement.
Police said the green plates would allow them to track sex offenders, who are already required to register with the local sheriff's office and are prohibited from living within 1,000 feet of a school.
"It will give Ohio families a great peace of mind knowing that their children will be able to recognize where this danger exists," Summit County Sheriff Drew Alexander said.
Opponents of the proposed law argue the use of a special plate would stigmatize everyone who shared the offender's car -- including their spouse or children.
The proposed law will be debated in committee before a decision is made whether to put the proposal to a vote.
I think this is a terrible idea. Why don't we just not let dangerous sex offenders out of prison? Or tattoo a symbol on their upper lip or something?
I wouldn't be surprised if this results in vigilante violence against those with the neon plates, and eventually a relative or other innocent party will be harmed. The cars will probably be vandalized more often.
I hate sex criminals, but I'd rather just execute them or put them away than let them out and then do stupid stuff like this.
Besides, a lot of people will just get around it by driving a car registered in someone else's name anyway.
Posted by Lady Starkiller (Member # 2444) on :
I think I agree with you. There's any number of ways to get around the plates, and cars are often used by more than one person. There's absolutely no way of guaranteeing that the sex offender is the driver, and nobody deserves to be stigmatized for what their friend/relative has done.
And I agree that the dangerous sex offenders shouldn't be released, if this is such a problem.
Frankly, the alarmist rhetoric is really starting to annoy me. It's not like sex offenders just popped out of the woodwork all of a sudden.
Posted by MattP (Member # 2763) on :
Yuck. This law sounds aweful. If they are considered to be so dangerous that they must wear a scarlet letter on their car, then they should probably be kept out of the population to begin with. I don't need my kids to be able to pick out the sex offenders on the freeway and none of these sickos will just borrow or rent a car if/when they go trolling. I know if I was issue the green plates I just wouldn't own a car anymore. I don't see how this law is helpful at all.
Posted by scifibum (Member # 945) on :
I think it's a roundabout way of imposing the death penalty on sex offenders. Not enough people would get behind just executing them, so the strategy is to make their lives unlivable until they just off themselves.
I'd rather just execute them than give them zero chance of living a normal life after they serve their prison time.
Posted by Funean (Member # 2345) on :
I suspect make-work legislation. You know, so this pair of idiots can claim they Co-Sponsored A Bill! in the next election cycle. I can't imagine it's anything but specious.
Posted by The Drake (Member # 2128) on :
I guess murderers and armed robbers can remain secure in their anonymity.
Posted by Loki (Member # 2312) on :
This is a great idea, we should all be branded with our crimes, especially after we've been 'rehabilitated.'
Got caught masturbating as a teenager? License plate for it.
This seems to be in the same vein as: Jewish? Wear this star.
Posted by Lobo (Member # 89) on :
So do you not agree with the sex offender data base?
Posted by MattP (Member # 2763) on :
quote:Originally posted by Lobo: So do you not agree with the sex offender data base?
I've got mixed feelings about it, but I consider the potential harm of such a database to be substantially lower than the license plate idea. I think it's valuable for parents to be able to know where sex offenders live in their neighborhood and what their specific crimes are. It's not broadcast to the world - only interested persons will seek the information, and they will also get more details than "sex offender."
I don't see the value in making the person carry a stigma during periods that we usually expect to be anonymous. Can you imagine what it would be like just to drive to work each day with these plates on. Do you think you'd go a single day without people honking their horns, flipping you off, and otherwise hassling you based on their presumptions about what "sex offender" means?
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
quote: Got caught masturbating as a teenager? License plate for it.
You know, I imagine people would actually pay extra for this vanity plate.
Posted by Lobo (Member # 89) on :
MattP. I agree. I think the current law is fine. I found it valuable in choosing a neighborhood and knowing that the guy on the corner that sits outside during the times that the kids are walking to/from school is a registered sex offender. I drive the kids to/from school now.
Posted by WeAreAllJust LooseChange (Member # 3411) on :
Next time they drive near a schoolbus - an alarm will buzz and all kids will have to take cover.
I wish instead of coming up with this new sex offenders law the Democrat and Republican should have come up with a law banning stupidity. But then again - they would have to be arrested on the spot
I'd agree that keeping sex offenders (repeating ones especially) longer in the prisons in the first place will be far safer for my children, then providing them with a way to "identify" the car of an attacker.
As if such person will even drive their car near the place so kids can somehow spot it.
Posted by Richard Dey (Member # 1727) on :
And I suggest that the child rapist will kidnap and kill your child instead.
Americans hae this bizarre idea that if something is made illegal, they can forget about it because it will go away. Niet zo, as the Dutch say, who've liberalized punishments for almost all sex crimes -- and they have gone done!
You don't think it odd that half a century ago the very idea of child molestation was simply not discussed in polite society -- and in the very best of society only the cases of Zeus and Ganymedes and maybe the Leopold and Loeb were so much as broached as topics of discussion?
As long as female child-molesters are not treated as the equal of male child-molesters, I think its all hypocrisy.
Posted by Rallan (Member # 1936) on :
Special plates for the cars of sex offenders? Gee, that's hella well thought out. What next, signs around their necks saying "I'm A Sex Offender, Please Lynch Me"?