Real News!

Reading newspapers is pretty interesting, if you ignore the headlines and scan the smaller stories. Lately I collect news clippings to put on my wall. It’s free, takes up space, and keeps me thinking.

In the past week I’ve read about astronauts who are trying to design a piece of equipment that converts urine & sweat into water (to double a space station crew…from three to six) and I also read a tragic story about a young college student who committed suicide in front of a live webcam. Some onlookers egged him on, others tried to get him to stop, and one person, when they realized he had literally taken an overdose of pills, responded, “OMG.”
There are so many terrible things about that story, I’m not even sure where to begin.

So I’m passing over those in favor of a more local tale: that of 29-year-old Wendy Whitaker, a registered sex offender. Wendy, a Georgia resident, recently filed a lawsuit in Columbia County’s Superior Court to try and stop an eviction scheduled for the upcoming week. The reason she’s having to move is because her home is within 1,000 feet of a day care center (the day care center is being run at a church, so she didn’t realize it existed when she first moved into her home).
You read that and you probably think, “Well, do we want a sex offender near a day care center? No!”
But here’s the catch: When Wendy was seventeen, she had consensual oral sex with a 15-year-old.

She was 17
He was 15
Actually, he was about a week away from being 16
It was consensual (boyfriend and girlfriend)
It was oral sex

The eviction will continue, but maybe her status as a sex offender will be dropped. I, for one, think that she shouldn’t be registered as one. She wasn’t sexually molesting really young kids. For all anyone knows, she may have thought that what she was doing wasn’t technically illegal until she was 18.

If anyone out there is reading this, I’d like to hear your opinion on the matter. Should she be a registered sex offender for a consensual sex act that happened twelve years ago?

(So what have we learned? I won’t ever be an astronaut, ’cause there is no way I’m drinking my own urine and sweat.)

Published in: on November 25, 2008 at 2:34 pm  Leave a Comment  
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