Monday, February 1, 2016

This is how to pass a bill with no facts to support it

The discussion in the U.S. House pertinent to International Megan's Law has ended with a vote to pass the resolution under suspension of the rules. It will now go to the President for his signature.

Ten legislators spoke in favor of the bill. They all threw out a lot of numbers, sometimes in conflict with each other, all designed to draw conclusions that cannot be concluded with any degree of logic.

Remember that the bill is named International Megan's Law to Prevent Child Exploitation and Other Sexual Crimes Through Advanced Notification of Traveling Sex Offenders. Child exploitation and other sexual crimes. Sexual crimes. Traveling sex offenders. Keep that in mind.

One legislator said, "There are tens of millions of victims of human trafficking," and another said, with somewhat less hyperbole, "There have been more than twenty million victims of human trafficking."

These are the kinds of figures that are thrown out, totally unverified but never challenged, but the actual point is that the term "human trafficking" conflates individuals trafficked for the purpose of labor and those trafficked for the purpose of sexual exploitation. Examination into the issue suggests that the far greater number is for labor, and those individuals are more likely to be adults than children. Forced labor, amounting to slavery, is horrendous, but is that what those legislators hearing the impassioned speeches of their colleagues thought of? No. They thought of little girls being kidnapped, raped, and prostituted. They thought of little girls like Megan Kanka because Megan's tragedy was recounted for them, if not by every one of the ten speakers, certainly by the majority of them.

And that is another problem. Megan's killer was not a "traveling sex offender." Megan was not trafficked to the human sex trade industry. As horrific as Megan's death was, there is not one syllable or one comma in HR 515 that would have prevented what happened to her. There is no parallel to be made except--oh yeah--she was killed by someone on the registry, and that point was pushed by the speakers for the bill also.

Nothing was said to suggest that the individuals responsible for all of this raping and exploiting were on the registry. It did not need to be said. That was nevertheless the message received because, if the purpose of the bill is to stop these things from happening, and the bill targets those on the registry, then those committing the acts must be those on the registry, just as Megan's killer was.

One speaker said that, in a given time period, passports had been issued to 2,000 registered sex offenders. That may well be true. Another, also speaking of a specific time period, said, "4,500 registered sex offenders received passports; that is unacceptable." Unacceptable? Unacceptable that 4,500 American citizens, for a myriad of reasons, chose to apply for and receive an American passport? Nothing was said to suggest that any of those 2,000 or any of those 4,500 used the passport to facilitate a sexual crime against a child--or any crime against anyone. But is that the message sent and received? Of course it was. If the purpose of the bill is to prevent these things from happening....

And so it passed. If all that had gone before had not been enough to secure its passage, the last, closing remark would surely have done so. "This will save children's lives."

Again, totally lacking in evidence, but a statement that will be heartily embraced and received and repeated as though it were gospel truth.


  1. What is clear to me is that these people who call themselves legislators are in it for one thing -- getting re-elected. They are going to look like heroes for passing this bill that does absolutely nothing but continue to persecute registered citizens. Will it reduce child sex trafficking? Doubtful. But as long as there are politicians there will be politics and these people will bake the numbers and make it look like they are heroes so they can win the next election. Until we enact term limits in this country we are going to continue to have these career politicians pass bills that look freaking genius but they do nothing to solve a real problem.

  2. Where is the bill to put drug trafficker on those passports? Oh never mind drug crimes are ok. But people who have never touched a child get labeled and now we label American citizens what is next. Glad to leave this country.

  3. They say that this bill is to protect children abroad, but I'm fairly certain that more children die overseas from US drone strikes than from traveling US sex offenders.

  4. Each event of this kind underscores ever more deeply how obsessed our culture is with sex. On a lighter note, "Traveling Sex Offenders" sounds like a cool name for a punk or metal rock band.

  5. Ask Nancy Pelosi , then wonder how dumb the american public really is that can't believe such statements of insanity - quote . We have to pass the bill into law not knowing whats in it . Too bad America , this is only one way ' and there are alot more ways to get bills passed, and how deep the pockets are that line those of politicions with tax payer dollars .

    1. Anony ; Its amazing that legislation drew up their own law from a finance commission commitee of their own for them selves to recently try to pass a law for a 47% pay increase for a part time six month legislative position .
      That in my mind is all being taken from the working families and those trying to avoid law suits from the opponents that want company's shutterd for more government control . So with good intent all house, assembly, and senate that do not pay social security should now start paying into it without being allowed to withdraw from it . That should include all special interest non profit groups that hide the income thru political contibutions for unscene bills that have some how got passed from our elected officials with our no voice tax dollars , that retire with suit cases full of currency and first bid wall street stock investments . ( We didnt start the fire ; quote from Billy Joel's song ) . Time to unite with peace, forgivness, respect, and responsibility . Lets start with respect and see how far that can go, this will be the once again promissed second chance act of the level system's dimmise with a non life time registry for public veiwing promoting the fear factor for financial and personal gain status .


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