As the March 10th congressional hearing plays in the background while I post, I'd like to give kudos to sdp123a for being the first to upload the video online.
I'd also like to suggest the read of a post by Laurie Peterson, who attended the hearings. Over at Citizens for Change, Peterson writes about her discussion held with Mark Lunsford that same day.
"...After taking a seat next to Mary (in the 2nd row!) I approached Mark Lunsford. I indicated that my husband was on the registry for life for a teenage consensual offense, much like his son would have faced if it were not for Mark's intervention. Mark indicated that his son served 10 days, but did still plea to a felony. He said that he advised OH prosecutors that he would expose every sex offense case where they gave a lenient sentence to a true sex offender if they treated his son like one of those predators. And so, his son avoided registration..."
"...a true sex offender..." You see, even Lunsford knows. Many listed on the nation's registries have no business being there. (Read how the rest of Laurie's conversation went with ML here. Also, I have to give Lunsford a sarcastic kudo for revictimizing his daughter's tragic death by choosing to wear a tie depicting her face as he testified before the hearing. Classy).
I'd also like to point out that another soul from Citizen of Change posted their opinion over at Daily Kos and were subsequently dismissed by two who bothered to comment at all. (I put my two cents in here.) But take it from this Frog who has stopped posting to the Kos pond a long time ago....in a way, the two comments shout volumes. My past attempts to educate that crowd fell on the truly uneducated ears of those who stood unafraid to blast their ignorance in those initial dark days. Their silence today reflects the education by the grassroots is being heard.
And that word continues to be heard as evidenced by these links post-hearing.
After finding out the hard way that I could not stop and start the video (heavy sigh) my initial impressions of the minority thus far is their refusal to let go of the Friendly Stranger myth.
But to scramble a quote from Shakespeare, they "....doth protest too much, methinks."
Why? As suggested by the prosecutor from Louisiana, "the devil lies in the details."
And from what I'm hearing as the video drones on, those details lie with the construction of this Act itself. Not by lawmakers, but by a couple of employees from the SMART office who drafted the guidelines. With no staffing and short-handed, with no funding to hire, somewhere along the line somebody made a decision to hey, let's go ahead and write it anyway. IMHO, that's criminal.
As I close this post, the statement "...not all sex offenders are alike...." is voiced before the Subcommittee. With thoughts of those who have worked so hard to hear this simple truth (among others) spoken before those responsible for the misery placed upon our loved ones while burdening our innocent families with collateral damage, I remain ever hopeful.
I listen on.