Banned from the library

January 14, 2010
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First they were prohibited from living too close to schools and then public park bans became the norm. Now, one legislator hopes to ban registered sex offenders from public libraries. If they show up there to check out a book or work on legal documents for a case, they can be charged with a Class D felony. There is one exception – they can vote in the library if that’s where their polling place is located, but the bill specifies they need to hightail it out of there once their vote is cast. No dillydallying before or after voting.

I know the idea behind the legislation HB 1326 is the same as the other bans imposed on sex offenders: to protect children. But are these bans creating a slippery slope where soon sex offenders won’t be able to leave their homes?

Children congregate in lots of places – churches, shopping malls, restaurants. Will we have to enact legislation to ban registered sex offenders from these places? I guarantee you there are sex offenders working in malls and restaurants – just visit the state’s online database of sex and violent offenders to see for yourself.

I am in no way trying to downplay the seriousness of the crimes these offenders commit against innocent children. We need to protect children as best we can from becoming victims, whether that be vigilant about knowing who lives in your neighborhood, not letting your children play or walk alone outside, or in other ways.

I know that not every sex offender can be “cured” or rehabilitated in prison. But I also know that they have served their time and that unless our legislature wants to impose tougher and longer penalties against those who commit sex crimes against children, our society is going to have to find a way to deal with sex offenders interacting with the general public.

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  1. What about the single mothers trying to protect their children from mentally abusive grandparents who hide who they truly are behind mounds and years of medication and have mentally abused their own children to the point of one being in jail and the other was on drugs. What about trying to keep those children from being subjected to the same abuse they were as a child? I can understand in the instance about the parent losing their right and the grandparent having raised the child previously! But not all circumstances grant this being OKAY! some of us parents are trying to protect our children and yes it is our God given right to make those decisions for our children as adults!! This is not just black and white and I will fight every ounce of this to get denied

  2. Mr Smith the theory of Christian persecution in Indiana has been run by the Indiana Supreme Court and soundly rejected there is no such thing according to those who rule over us. it is a thought crime to think otherwise.

  3. maybe if some of the socia workers would treat the foster parents better, they would continue to fostr.

  4. We have been asked to take in a 2 no old baby because mother is in very unstable situation. We want to do this but will need help with expenses such as medical and formula... Do we have to have custody thru court?

  5. Very troubling. A competent public defender is very much the right of every indigent person in the US or the Fifth amendment becomes meaningless. And considering more and more of us are becoming poorer and poorer under this "system," the need for this are greater than ever.... maybe they should study the Federals and see how they manage their program? And here's to thanking all the PD attorneys out there who do a good job.