An Advocate for Children

Yesterday was a rough day at the Capitol for my Senator.   He has a strong and consistent track record when it comes to protecting children.  He has championed legislation that protects them from those who wish to do them harm.  And, I’m talking the worst kind of harm….unthinkable crimes.

Well, it just so happens that those criminals eventually get released from prison and live in our city.  Yes, there are laws that regulate where they can live in relation to children and they are supposed to register that address with local law enforcement. …. but do they?  Do we really know where they are?

I know I am like most moms out there who are vigilant when it comes to protecting their children.  I know there are a handful of registered sex offenders who live in close proximity to our house.  I have looked them up online.  I know their names, their crimes and their address and I like having that information.  But there are so many more out there who don’t register this information.  These people are the outcasts of our society and they are justly treated as such.

In my city, however, there is a ministry that tries to help these people, even though I think they are beyond help.  They have a multi residence facility, if you can call it that, where these criminals live together.  They are registered with the law and we know where they live and who they are…  kind of like a leper colony.

I think there is a benefit to having them all together in one place.  Easier to track, easier to find and more likely they will register their location with local law enforcement.

Well, the city doesn’t want them there anymore.  And, I would be remiss if I didn’t say I wouldn’t want them there either.  Like most people, I don’t want them anywhere….anywhere where they can harm children.  However, unless we sentence them to a lifetime in jail, they will be somewhere and we should be vigilant in monitoring them and their behavior.

So, my Senator took on City Hall yesterday.  He made local and national news for his ’emotional’ plea to not slap this ministry with frivolous restrictions which could potentially force this group to disband.  The bill failed on its first attempt as it should have.  It was a bad piece of legislation.  But, the city brought in the big guns to have it reconsidered.  They had three five lobbyists working it on the ground to get the votes when the floor leader brought it back for reconsideration.

One has to wonder what the motivation was for the city to take such extreme measures.  The land this ‘group home’ sits on is not desirable. I’m sure time and money will tell.  But for now, this ministry which helps the dregs of our society will most likely fold and there will be unintended consequences.  Horrible, unintended consequences.  These offenders will leave because they have to go somewhere and they will blend into our neighborhoods.  They will go unnoticed. They may or may not register with the local law enforcement and they will undoubtedly harm more children.

My Senator will be watching.  He is a consistent advocate for children down at the marble palace and I am extremely proud of him for voicing his opinions where their safety is concerned.