Real Sex Ed Means Teaching Teens, “This Is How You Could Get Labeled a ‘Sex Offender'”

 

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One of the scariest things about our over-the-top sex offender laws is how easy it is for a teenager with a girlfriend, boyfriend or sophomoric sense of humor to get labeled a “sex offender,” with all the legal and social ramifications this engenders.

That’s why I nominate the probation and parole officer profiled tyreafsdbi
in Sunday’s Cedar Rapids (IA) Gazette
,  Michelle Reese, as educator of the year. She goes around to middle schools, teaching students about the Puritanical pitfalls ahead.

As shadowed by reporter Erin Jordan, Reese starts out her lecture by showing students a 6-person lineup and asking them to pick out the sex offender. Surprise, she informs them: They are all “offenders,” including the 20-year-old guy, and the woman. Then Reese explains to kids: You, too,  could end up as one, if you “do something at age 18 that’s going to brand you for the rest of your life.”

The legal age of consent for having sex in Iowa is 16.

By law, an 18- or a 19-year old may not have sex with someone four years younger, even if that person is a willing partner. That means a 17-year-old high school senior dating a 14-year-old freshman could have a legal sexual relationship, as long as there’s no force involved – but once the older partner turns 18, it’s illegal, Reese explains.

There are 123 people required to register as sex offenders in Iowa for this type of crime. Most were convicted of third-degree sex abuse, which requires lifetime registration, but are exempt from the public database because they committed their crime before age 20.

Lifetime registration as a sex offender? For that? How can we tolerate these outrageous laws that damn young people — non-rapists — for the rest of their lives? And as Reese points out, the law is even crazier than that:

The eighth-graders cackle when Reese describes a scenario in which a high school senior on a school bus coming home from a sporting event moons passing cars. But if the kid accidentally shows his genitals and the mom driving the passing car is offended, he could get popped for indecent exposure, which carries 10 years on the registry, Reese says.

Who passed this law? How can it get repealed? How many voters even know that there is radioactive legislation like this on the books? And how many kids have a clue? That’s why what Reese is doing is such a godsend, giving wide-eyed young ‘uns a glimpse of the Draconian regime they are living under — before they find out in court.

Reese is among corrections officials who want to see Iowa’s sex-offender laws relaxed for some teen offenders. A subcommittee of the Iowa House Public Safety Committee proposed legislation in 2014 that would have allowed people convicted of sex crimes at 18, without force, and with victims 13 or older, to apply for early release from registry requirements.

The proposal was passed in the Senate but died in the House.

For shame, Iowa House legislators. For shame.

Maybe as the Presidential candidates traipse around the state they can promise that, if elected, they will encourage national legislation decriminalizing consensual sex between teens, and making mooning into something a little less than a crime punishable with a 10-year sentence. – L

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10 years as a registered sex offender for this???

10 years as a registered sex offender for this??? (Chuck Coker, photog.)

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50 Responses to Real Sex Ed Means Teaching Teens, “This Is How You Could Get Labeled a ‘Sex Offender'”

  1. Sarah Fiske Williams November 1, 2015 at 12:59 pm #

    I teach Sex Ed through our church (Unitarian), and we definitely cover what our state laws say, as well as the idea that different states have different policies. While we stress a preference for waiting for sexual intercourse until after high school at least, we also make sure they know that it’s normal to want to be sexual and explore the fun. The more information we can find we give them, and really hope that they all will make safe choices as they enter the adventure of healthy sexuality. But we (and they) all know that mistakes and misjudgements happen, and we try to help them understand when those choices are likely to have minor and recoverable consequences, and when the effects are likely to create a whole new path that they really didn’t plan on. And these kids (8th graders!) are really quite savvy, and we see them grow so much in a year of this class. It’s really inspiring to see them take the knowledge forward and become responsible members of our community.

  2. Liz November 1, 2015 at 1:00 pm #

    So they’ve been having legal sex for a really long time, but the minute the older one turns 18 it becomes rape?!
    This is the problem with mandatory sentencing! The judge should be able to look at it and say “that’s insane, case dismissed.”

  3. Richard November 1, 2015 at 1:02 pm #

    We’ve created this ridiculous situation where children are protected from reasonable consequences for their actions when young. There is nothing that the parents can’t or won’t fix for them. In our schools, by policy, any child through junior high school can retake a test and make up missed homework without any effect on grades. No matter why, a kid can come in and say I couldn’t be bothered to study, so I need to retake the test and he can–no penalty. How can we expect them to suddenly start acting as if consequences are real out of the blue in late high school when they’ve never seen such a thing as a consequence that their parents can’t “fix.”

  4. Curious November 1, 2015 at 1:13 pm #

    How far is Iowa from Michigan and Indiana? Just a little bit of Wisconsin between. Surely Iowa knows all about Zach Anderson? There should be curriculum in every social studies class there and everywhere these days about how laws impacting kids work against kids and families, and how defenseless they and their parents are against corrupt judges and prosecutors advancing their own personal money-grubbing agendas.

    Have you all read Gerry Spence’s new book : POLICE STATE ? In a long career as a trial attorney and prosecutor, he says he did not see even ONE case in which the police, prosecutors and judges behaved in a fully legal manner!
    The defendant got the short end of every stick, no matter what the facts, the law, the evidence.

    We are trouble! Gerry Spence points out that the police work for us, the people! They should, but do they?

  5. M November 1, 2015 at 1:48 pm #

    My husband started college at age 17.

    This law means a 21 yr old college student, dating a college freshman just weeks away from turning 18, could end up on the sex offender list.

  6. Nicole R. November 1, 2015 at 1:50 pm #

    It’s ridiculous what can land people on the “registry” (which-hunt list, is more like it). Not to mention the fact that even those who are found innocent have these accusations attached to a web search of their name forever. Far more people are being hurt by this than protected by it.

  7. TorontoMom November 1, 2015 at 2:21 pm #

    My 14 year old nephew was horrified to learn that his nosy aunt was able to monitor an awful lot of what he did on Facebook. He was more horrified when I told him he was guilty of distributing child pornography. His crime? A girl he knew had posted an ill-advised selfie of herself wearing pretty much nothing. He had “liked” it. Now, we can talk about being respectful to your female friends, and we did in fact discuss a more appropriate response. But my main task was to explain to him that since his “like” resulted in all sorts of people (including me – ugh, the things you can never unsee!) seeing the photo, he had “distributed” it. And given her age….

    Social media gives teens so much opportunity to do stupid stuff that had can have such huge and long lasting ramifications.

  8. andy November 1, 2015 at 2:51 pm #

    @Richard What does that have to do with anything? This is not a problem with teenagers behaving in an irresponsible way, this is a problem with laws being contraintuitive and overly punitive for what should be minor infractions at worst.

  9. Papilio November 1, 2015 at 2:53 pm #

    “Real Sex Ed Means Teaching Teens, “This Is How You Could Get Labeled a ‘Sex Offender’””

    I agree that, given the circumstances, such education is necessary, but gee, this is just so sad, especially in a country that considers itself ‘free’ and ‘modern’ etc.
    Basically having to tell teens, ‘this is how you keep the know-it-all adults from ruining your life for (fairly) normal teen behavior’ is not what ‘real sex ed’ should be all about.

  10. Donald November 1, 2015 at 3:20 pm #

    Fearful humans. Give me a dalek any day

    Dr Who

  11. Chuck Coker November 1, 2015 at 4:27 pm #

    I love the Free Range Kids website. I read it most days. I raised my kids as free-range kids even before I knew there was such a thing.

    My comment has to do with the photo used here. I was surprised and am truly honored that you chose my photo (https://www.flickr.com/photos/caveman_92223/2681073506/) to accompany your article. However, your use of the photo does not comply with my licensing terms. I released the photo under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-ND 2.0) license (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/) which means you are free to use it for pretty much anything you want to use it for, at no cost to you, as long as you give me credit for the photo. If you want to use the photo without giving me credit for it, ask me—the odds are very good I will make an exception for you and allow you to use it without attribution, but you need to ask me.

    Thanks. And keep up the good work.

  12. Chuck Coker November 1, 2015 at 4:30 pm #

    By the way, I had my children with me the day I took the photo used in this article. We all mooned the Amtrak and Metrolink trains. The event is called Moon the Amtrak, but the Nanny State folks tried to shut it down. I haven’t been for several years, they may have succeeded in eliminating it by now.

  13. Richard November 1, 2015 at 5:46 pm #

    Andy, it makes it less likely that the people who need to understand this can happen to them will recognize the threat these laws are until they are caught in a nightmare. We are going from no real consequences for misconduct to this type of draconian penalty.

  14. James Pollock November 1, 2015 at 6:19 pm #

    There’s a substantial part of the American population that thinks the topic of sex education should be encapsulated as “just say no!”, since talking about sex in any way somehow implies permission.

    Meanwhile, I think we’ve covered the bases that there’s a whole bunch of things that don’t involve sex that get labeled as “sex crimes”. The solution is to fix the laws to remove the stupid, not change how we educate children about stupid laws.

  15. tz November 1, 2015 at 7:53 pm #

    I think you are are a fool or knave.

    If a boy impregnates a girl, and she has the baby, the boy is responsible for child support for the next 18 years.
    No ifs, ands, or buts. Maybe it isn’t the sex-offender registry, but if he doesn’t cough up enough every month (or week) he will face jail, contempt, and the rest.

    But you. don’t. care.

    Let young boys have their lives ruined. Have sex. Have a kid. But don’t get married or the rest as if you waited. But have to pay week after week.

    Or either partner can catch the chronic STD. You will burn below the waist and be a slave to big pharma until you die, but You. Don’t. Care. The girl or guy might end up infertile. You. Don’t. Care. The girl or guy may have a chronic painful condition. You. Don’t. Care. If either get married, the spouse might get infected. You. Don’t Care. If a baby is conceived, it might die or be horribly crippled due to this indiscretion. You. Don’t. Care.

    We worry about firearms, but ignore sex – apparently the 2nd amendment doesn’t matter but the emanations and penumbras of the 4th let teens have sex, and we can’t mention the consequences.

  16. Barry Lederman November 1, 2015 at 8:59 pm #

    For those not familiar with Dr Who; daleks are extremely evil. Hence Donald’s comment is all the more poignant.

  17. Backroads November 1, 2015 at 9:01 pm #

    Tz, you’re on another topic entirely

  18. hineata November 1, 2015 at 9:03 pm #

    The All Blacks just won the Holy Grail of sports awards, the Rugby World Cup. It is just as well we don’t have a sex offender registry, or there’d no doubt be lots of names added to it for drunken celebratory shenanigans….as it is there’ll probably be a baby boom . Though hopefully not too many to teens ….

  19. Susannah November 1, 2015 at 9:34 pm #

    Tz, what on earth are you talking about? Lenore never said she didn’t care about child support (which is 18 years, not lifetime registry on a list) and she never said she didn’t care about STDs. What this blog article is about is the draconian stupidity of sex offender laws. She never said warnings about hysterical, life-ruining laws should take the place of traditional sex education, rather – this information needs to be distributed along with traditional sex education because young people these days are often unaware of all the ways their lives could be ruined by these laws.

    And by the way- please – educate yourself; proper sex education teaches how to use birth control, as well as the proper use of barrier methods. While some STDs, like herpes, can still be contracted even if barrier methods are used, the risk is greatly reduced. And also, marriage isn’t an ultimate protector against having to pay child support or catching an STD. All it takes is a wandering spouse to get both problems.

    Implying that over-the-top sex offender laws also protect against pregnancy or STDs is frankly, magical thinking.

  20. Curious November 1, 2015 at 10:06 pm #

    The US Sentencing Commission is reviewing sentencing statistics with a goal of passing a proposed amendment to make non-contact child pornography “a crime of violence”.

    So kiddies sending selfies of friends? adults posting moonie photos? Yes. This will soon get you jail time and life on the registry. And it may be retroactive. Low level offenders will automatically be reclassified Level Three.

    What is now a low level offense, “possession, receipt, transportation, distribution, and other computer related activities involving child pornography” will be the next sex offender “cash cow”.

    Send letters to US Sentencing Commission
    One Columbus Circle NE Suite 2-500
    Washington D.C.

    Write now. The public comments are accepted until Nov. 12, 2015.

    State that non-contact child pornography offenses are not violent in nature and should not be classified as such.

    Many of us have kids who have posted questionable selfies. Should the penalty be life on the sex offender registry?

    What do you think?

    Also, should you think twice about sharing your stories publicly. The TorontoMom’s kid is across the border. But if this is to be the law of the land, best to watch out!

  21. Donald November 1, 2015 at 10:53 pm #

    Tz
    A boy/man telling a girl anything she wants to hear in order to impregnate her and run off leaving her holding the bag is nothing new. You hate this. I hate this. Lenore hates this. Everyone on this blog probably hates this as well. However I believe that Draconian law causes more problems than it solves.

    Perhaps some guy left you holding the bag. I can understand it could be extremely hurtful. Any person that doesn’t try to imagine how hurtful it can be is naive. However it’s also naive to think that a person that ‘moons’ another or pees in a parking lot is worthy of a lifetime of punishment.

    For decades we have passed laws based on revenge and fear.

  22. sexhysteria November 2, 2015 at 3:03 am #

    Thanks, Michelle Reese. Every voice of sanity drowns out 1000 voices of hysteria.

  23. andy November 2, 2015 at 5:17 am #

    @Richard I doubt that homework policies or testing policies and anything to do with sex laws and their applications later on. Besides, zero tolerance polices we read about on this blog (and in other journals too) are far from “there being zero consequences” situation. So while “kids are let to do what they want” might be true in some schools (probably affluent good schools), other schools seem to be full of petty policies enforced in a very heavy handed way.

    Just lately I read about school that suspends students for chewing gum or having a cell phone. While chewing gum was considered impolite, I would never be strongly punished for it. Nor would I be punished for not tucking in shirt which was apparently suspension worthy infraction too. (Suspension as punishment did not existed, we were supposed to go to school and learn every day.) And while cell phone usage definitely can be distracting and teachers absolutely should be allowed to take them away during class, the equivalent distractions in our time would never end in such major punishments either.

    I read about kindergartners being suspended for some childhood misbehavior (refusal to draw or sit something like that) and there was no such thing as far as I remember. There were unruly or bad kids, but for the most part, teachers were expected and able to deal with them.

    On the extreme side, I read about elementary schools that have cops in them and cops are being used to deal with stuff like defiance – so the kid that refuses to leave class may get pepper sprayed which is a real thing that can really happen. We had nothing like that in our time, cops would be called of someone would got violent or steal or something like that. Things like defiance were solved within school. It is not that they did not happened, defiant kids were and challenged teachers. However, response to them was much less heavy handed.

  24. BL November 2, 2015 at 9:09 am #

    @andy
    “We had nothing like that in our time, cops would be called of someone would got violent or steal or something like that.”

    I remember a cop in school exactly once, K-12.

    And he wasn’t there to respond to trouble, but to give us a “don’t use drugs” lecture.

  25. Richard November 2, 2015 at 10:31 am #

    Andy, What I’m talking about is this zero to sixty–with nothing in between–that we have established for kids. While the potential effect of the sexual offender registry may be among the worst, some of the other things you mention are also examples of the jump to draconian penalties from no consequences at all. Kids, by their nature, are learning to control their impulses, and learning that actions have consequences is part of that process. They also tend to be optimistic (I won’t get caught, Mom can get me out of it if I do get caught, nothing terrible will happen this once) They should be learning through a reasonable progression in which there are age/act appropriate consequences for failures to fulfill age appropriate responsibilities. A child who has never seen a consequence his parents can’t get him out of is less likely to hear it when you tell him (or her) to restrain his impulses in connection with sexual activity because of the potential consequences.

  26. andy November 2, 2015 at 12:06 pm #

    @Richard Thank you, I understand you better now. I agree what you wrote. The worst thing I see on what you describe is we are role modeling that way of using authority to kids. As in, they are learning that once they get authority on their own, this is the way to use it. I am afraid they will be even worst then our generation is in this regards, because we are raising them to be that way.

    It would be great if I would be wrong. I do not want nurse with such tendencies once I will be old and too sick to care about myself.

  27. John November 2, 2015 at 12:25 pm #

    Quote:

    “Maybe as the Presidential candidates traipse around the state they can promise that, if elected, they will encourage national legislation decriminalizing consensual sex between teens, and making mooning into something a little less than a crime punishable with a 10-year sentence”

    I wouldn’t hold my breath on that Lenore because unfortunately, any Presidential candidate or politician would be committing political suicide if their agenda was to decriminalize ANY type of sexual activity involving teens that is currently deemed illegal. When it comes to kids and sex mentioned in the same paragraph, American society is too draconian to look at a given situation in a logical manner. I’m afraid that the political opponents of any candidate pushing for the decriminalization of any type of sex offense, especially those involving minors, would have a field day blasting them on that position. In fact, I think the situation might even get worse. More and more sex offense laws and higher and higher penalties for breaking those laws. That’s how politicians get votes in America today…..sigh.

  28. John November 2, 2015 at 1:14 pm #

    I certainly commend Ms. Reese for conducting these type of seminars and warning young people of the lifetime consequences for doing something they might consider “innocent”. Obviously there is a need for this type of education today in preventing the lives of kids with high potential being ruined. In this day and age of draconian penalties over minor sex offenses, kids must be forewarned; however, this also detracts from the real need for sex education and that being the consequences of STDs to include HIV/AIDS and unwanted pregnancies. Ironically enough, the puritans, i.e. John Walsh, who believe these sex laws and the severe consequences for violating them are the greatest thing in America today, would also commend Ms. Reese for warning the kids but would probably lambast her for believing they’re too severe.

    The problem with the severe consequences the sex offender registry befalls on a youngster is the potential lost for American society. Teenagers make mistakes, teenagers make flagrant misjudgments. That is part of being a teenager and that includes even very smart kids. So now you have a youngster who has the potential of becoming a very good doctor someday and saving many lives or the youngster who has the potential of becoming an excellent Engineer and designing items that would make life so much easier for Americans, etc., etc. But now their lives are essentially ruined over a mistake they made as a teenager and American society also loses out on the rewards of their valuable talent. Consensual sex between an 18-year-old and a 14-year-old is NOT equivalent to murder but yet we treat it as that way. Kids should be disciplined for sexting but not in the same way we punish people for committing grand theft auto! I could go on and on about all this but don’t have enough time and space.

  29. Toby in AK November 2, 2015 at 2:02 pm #

    I plan on having exactly this conversation with my son.

  30. Anne Huddleston November 2, 2015 at 3:27 pm #

    Everything that everyone else has mentioned is certainly part of the problem (draconian laws, over-protection, fear of teen sexuality and treating it like it does’t or shouldn’t exist) but I would like to identify two deeper issues – the way society draws links between “naked butt” and “sex”; along with the idea that being offended should result in punishment of the offender. Mooning is not about sex, it’s about saying, effectively, “F**k you.” Mooning is not intended to illicit licentious thoughts from the viewer, but rather, it is meant to piss them off. Furthermore, the fact that an outraged viewer might be offended SHOULD NOT give that person the right to press charges.

  31. Resident Iconoclast November 2, 2015 at 3:47 pm #

    “Who passed this law? How can it get repealed?,” the story asks.

    The Answer: Baby Boomers, who today are the senior legislators all across the United States. That’s right, the “free-love” generation that exhorted everyone to “do their own thing” and who lived by the slogan, “sex, drugs, and rock and roll.”

    The beyond-obscene levels of hubris and hypocrisy of that generation ought to ashame every one of us who shares the same age. It’s bad enough that America’s puritan past re-emerges decade after decade. It’s beyond sickening that the people leading the charge are the same people who lectured their parents about being old fashioned, and screwed everything in sight without regard to the then-nonexistent consequences.

    If it were up to me, I’d put every one of those hypocrite legislators on the sex offender registry, retroactively.

  32. John November 2, 2015 at 5:09 pm #

    Actually what Ms. Reese is doing is the very thing that could get some of these draconian laws and sentences repealed, eventually after time. What she is doing is educating the public on how easy it is to get placed on the SOR. I really don’t think most Americans realize this and are under the impression that it is mostly child rapists who are on the registry. So they push for more and tougher laws and sentences. But if enough people like Ms. Reese, who is a parole and probation officer, unveil the truth about the SOR and who really gets placed on it, people may start to give pause and think “now wait a minute, this is going overboard and needs to change!”

    Now there would have to be many people like Ms. Reese and they’d need to give these seminars often enough and also to parents as well as to teenagers but if this is drummed up to large quantities of people on a very frequent basis, perhaps that is the only chance for reform. If enough people realize how draconian the rules on teenage sex and the consequences thereof are perhaps they would bring it to the attention of their Congressmen and if it’s a large contingent of people complaining about this, perhaps the Congressman would have the courage to propose the reform.

  33. Tommy Udo November 2, 2015 at 7:30 pm #

    I was out walking one night and couldn’t hold it any more. There were no restrooms of any kind anywhere so I ducked into some convenient bushes and took a leak. It was either that or do it in my pants. If a cop had passed by and spotted me I would now be a registered sex offender. Laws like this are absurd.

  34. hineata November 2, 2015 at 11:47 pm #

    About the urinating in public thing…..do any women get done for that? It’s pretty much standard practice to jump behind a bush here, men or women. When you’re out driving in the wops it can be scores of miles between actual toilets.

    A ridiculous law anyway, but pretty sexist too if only men end up on the registry.

  35. Emily November 3, 2015 at 7:37 am #

    Good point, Hineata. Also, I have to wonder, if going to the bathroom outside (if there’s no actual bathroom available) can get someone on the sex offender registry, does that now make remote camping illegal? I went on a lot of remote campng trips as a teenager, with my YMCA-affiliated summer camp, and a lot of those remote campsites didn’t have outhouses. Does that make everyone who ever went on one of these trips, a sex offender as well?

  36. James Pollock November 3, 2015 at 8:12 am #

    “if going to the bathroom outside (if there’s no actual bathroom available) can get someone on the sex offender registry, does that now make remote camping illegal?”

    It’s not the peeing outside that gets you on the registry (though often that’ll still get you a ticket, if you get caught), it’s doing it where someone can see you.

  37. Steve S November 3, 2015 at 8:23 am #

    Since it comes up frequently, it is worth noting that urinating in public will not get you on the sex offender registry in some states. If you are concerned about it, check your own state’s laws laws related to what gets reported.

  38. James Pollock November 3, 2015 at 8:43 am #

    The thing is, it shouldn’t get you on the sex offender in ANY states, because it isn’t a sex offense.

  39. Steve S November 3, 2015 at 10:22 am #

    I agree. In my state, urinating in public is only found in local ordinances and a conviction would not require registration.

  40. Evalyne November 3, 2015 at 10:42 am #

    As the “resident resource for answers to questions we don’t want to ask our parents” for my teenage sister and her friends, I’ve given a fair number of warnings about sex offender registry myself. Living in a deeply conservative Christian area, the only sex education most of them receive is medically inaccurate abstinence-only fearmongering that utilizes a text that includes bible verses in a public school. I had to learn a lot from myself from various sources, and I don’t want them to endure that, so I let them know that they can contact me with questions and requests for advice without judgement or repercussions (though I do reserve the right to intervene if I believe they are in a real and present danger, my bar for that is fairly high, i.e. being physically abused by a partner, overdosing on substances, and I’ve not had to do that yet). I’ve had at least one talk to me about possibly wanting to experiment sexually with an older boyfriend or girlfriend, or send racy photos to someone, etc. and in all these cases I have been sure to give them the facts about offenses that can get someone prosecuted on the sex offender registry, making clear that the choice is theirs, and there is no morality judgement by me, but that they need to be cautious that they aren’t doing anything that could land either of them on the registry. In each case, they have been surprised and astounded by the ridiculous sorts of things that could get them on that registry and appreciative of the information; there’s always a reaction of “I thought only scary rapists and child snatchers were on that”. Personally, I’m a firm believer in “knowledge is power”, and by refusing to hide the knowledge of what can get them on a draconian registry we can give young people the power to not only save themselves from such a fate, but, perhaps one day, make positive changes to the laws.

  41. John November 3, 2015 at 12:16 pm #

    I THINK it has been mentioned in a link to this site that there are 13 states where urinating in public will get you placed on the registry. I THINK in at least a few of those 13 states, you’d need to be urinating where a kid happened to see you. In other words, if a police officer saw you urinating and if a kid happened to be riding by on his bicycle, that is what could get you placed on the SOR.

    Now I am not certain of any of this so if anybody here knows the exact facts, please feel free to correct me. Either way, I know that urinating in public where people can see you is illegal in ANY state. It’s just a matter of whether or not it gets you placed on the registry.

  42. Curious November 3, 2015 at 5:13 pm #

    John’s comment raises this question.
    What about those troughs in some men’s restrooms? If a cop and a kid on a bike see a male peeing out of doors (who thought he was unobserved but wasn’t), and that can get him 10 years on the registry, why is group urinating indoors OK?

    Women with stalls indoors, and their skirts covering the evidence out doors don’t have this problem.

    But it seems to be true that any any showing of privates can get you busted and registered in some places.

    And what about the nudie babies in the bearskin rugs? The pictures in the wallets carried by proud daddies of yore? Child pornography?

  43. James Pollock November 3, 2015 at 5:24 pm #

    “And what about the nudie babies in the bearskin rugs? The pictures in the wallets carried by proud daddies of yore? Child pornography?”

    This one’s easy. In order to be child pornography, it must first be pornography. Nudity and pornography are not the same thing.

  44. John November 3, 2015 at 5:43 pm #

    Quote:

    “This one’s easy. In order to be child pornography, it must first be pornography. Nudity and pornography are not the same thing.”

    Very true, if all child nudity was considered pornography, parents with pictures of their toddlers in the bathtub could be prosecuted, which would mean all parents, but they’re not. Also, photos of kids with their genitals covered can still be considered child pornography. Such as a young girl donned in leather and bondage clothes with a whip in hand or a young boy in briefs sitting on a leather couch with his legs spread in a sensuous like pose. Obviously it would be up to the discretion of the Judge or the Jury as to what is considered “sensuous” but I don’t think it would be a winning situation for a person in possession of a large number of those type of photos. Not in THIS day and age anyway.

  45. that mum November 4, 2015 at 12:06 pm #

    I agree John, so, following that thought process, I agree naked kid pics are not the problem it is the context they are in for sure.

    So why for love of all that is sacred are those kiddie beauty pagents still allowed? toddlers parading around in bikinis with makeup on that looks like they have been shot in the face with Homer Simpson’s makeup gun. If that is not pornographic I do not know what is.

  46. Papilio November 4, 2015 at 1:04 pm #

    “excellent Engineer and designing items that would make life so much easier for Americans”

    I’m just going to pretend that means the rest of the world already has these items 😛
    Sorry John, I do agree with the rest of your comment 🙂

  47. Jon November 5, 2015 at 1:42 am #

    John, we’re already there.

    http://blogs.findlaw.com/blotter/2009/09/bath-photos-wal-mart-what-is-child-pornography.html
    http://blogs.findlaw.com/law_and_life/2010/11/naked-baby-photos-lead-to-parents-arrest.html

    http://jonathanturley.org/2009/08/17/texas-officials-arrest-parents-and-take-away-their-children-for-taking-pictures-of-their-children-in-a-bathtub-and-breastfeeding/
    “Later, after searching their home, police and child welfare officials found a picture of Jacqueline breast feeding one the children. That was it: Texas prosecutors secured a grand jury indictment against the parents for “sexual performance of a child,” a second-degree felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison. “

  48. dancing on thin ice November 6, 2015 at 4:48 pm #

    In the early 1970’s before they became international and there were only a dozen or so local franchises, Subway sandwich shops capitalized on the streaking fad. You could get a free sub by dashing into a shop with nothing but a grin and an appetite. It was short lived, possible due to violating health code rules of going beyond “no shirt, no service”.

    Cue the jokes about their former pitchman.

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  50. Dirk November 10, 2015 at 2:30 pm #

    Mandatory sentencing is bad. But DAs and police have discretionary power. As do judges… I find it hard to believe this is wide spread or that the number of instances where the authorities go too far isn’t dwarfed by the number of times DAs, police, and judges use their discretion and relabel offenses or give warnings.