“In July of 1994, Jesse Timmendequas, a convicted sex offender, raped, beat and strangled Megan Nicole Kanka. This sex offender lived across the street from the Kanka family; however the family was never aware of this.” (www.mapsexoffenders.com) This event brought about the ongoing controversy that is whether or not to give out information on sex offenders. The Kanka family decided after the murder of their daughter, something had to be done about the lack of knowledge of the residences of sex offenders. The family and over 430,000 other people signed a petition to get the names, addresses, and personal information of registered sex offenders out there for the public to observe. These terms were eventually turned into laws called “Meagan’s Laws.” Each state maintains an online registry of all the registered sex offenders in the nation. These websites contain maps where a user can enter street names, city names, state, and zip codes to look up sex offenders. Some websites even provide pictures along with the names and addresses of the offenders.
The issue of registering known sex offenders is extremely controversial. Some will say that the public has a right to know the living places of sex offenders for the protection of themselves, their children, and other loved ones. Others will say that it is an invasion of privacy. However, some will ask, “Is it necessary to go as far as to give pictures, middle names, and the charge with which the sex offender was convicted of? Isn’t the address enough?” All people are different and will always have different opinions on issues such as these.
The names of registered sex offenders should most definitely be published online or otherwise for the public to observe. This is mandatory for the well being and safety of all people. Society has a right to know all necessary information on sex offenders. Simply a name and address is not enough. The public should be able to know why the person was charged with sexual offense,...
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