Archive for December, 2015

Are Sex Offender Registries Cruel and Unusual Punishment?

Wednesday, December 30th, 2015

“And what is absolutely mind-blowing is that the SOR’s have been proven not to work, and they cost the taxpayers gobs of money (see reference ‘a’ above). But now that they’ve become institutionalized in the justice system, they’re a political football. Now we have lots of people whose livelihoods derive from the SOR’s, and an entire industry has built up around the maintenance and support of SOR’s (just like the prison system). To advocate sensible, logical approaches to the problem has become political suicide for the politicians and legislators.”

Read the full article by Phil Lcoke, Science and Technology Advisor, Ohio Innocence Project.

Shutting Down Conversations About Rape at Harvard Law

Tuesday, December 15th, 2015

“We have seen recent high-profile instances in which that article of faith has led to damaging errors, as in Rolling Stone’s reporting of a rape at the University of Virginia, or the prosecution of the Duke lacrosse case. The extent of the damage comes out of the fact that “always believe” unwittingly renders the stakes of each individual case impossibly high, by linking the veracity of any one claim to the veracity of all claims. When the core belief is that accusers never lie, if any one accuser has lied, it brings into question the stability of the entire thought system, rendering uncertain all allegations of sexual assault. But this is neither sensible nor necessary: that a few claims turn out to be false does not mean that all, most, or even many claims are wrongful. The imperative to act as though every accusation must be true—when we all know some number will not be—harms the over-all credibility of sexual assault claims.”

Read the full article by Jeannie Suk in The New Yorker.

Two Articles About the Sex Offenders of Pahokee Florida

Friday, December 11th, 2015

“Today, though, the town of Pahokee does more than tolerate the sex offender colony. It has come to embrace it. And nowhere is that turnaround more evident than at the United Methodist Church, where many offenders attend service.”

Read the full article by Anne Schindler in First Coast News.

“Travis Russ is founder and artistic director at Life Jacket Theatre, an “investigative theater” company based in New York City. He and creative partner Amelia Parenteau came to Pahokee for a week in October to conduct hours of interviews. Those will be transcribed into verbatim scripts, and eventually performed at their Off-Broadway theatre.”

Read the full article by Anne Schindler in First Coast News.

The Online–Sex Predator Panic

Wednesday, December 9th, 2015

“And then there are the patent absurdities created by such laws—signs that legislators, in search of novel ways to torture so-called sex offenders, have abandoned consideration of efficacy or justice. In the case of underage sexting, for instance, a person is both offender and victim at the same time.”

Read the full article by Judith Levine in Boston Review.

Felito Mendoza Desperately Needs Pen Pals

Monday, December 7th, 2015

I have been in touch with Felito Mendoza for over 15 years. But I haven’t been a good pen pal. I mean well, but my schedule just seems to get too busy.

Since being sent to prison, Felito had two faithful supporters. One was his mother. The other was a man named Nicholas Peters. Unfortunately, both are now dead. Felito is devastated by their loss.

I haven’t investigated Felito’s case. Mr. Peters did, and you can see his report by clicking on Felito’s name in the below address.

If you feel you can’t commit to being a regular pen pal, perhaps you could send him a Christmas card to brighten his lonely holiday season. Here is the address:

Felito Mendoza
BV3355
Box 246, C-A1-059
Graterford PA 19426-0246

-Bob Chatelle

Please Send a Card to a Prisoner

Friday, December 4th, 2015

Anyone who knows a prisoner knows how important to them to receive mail, especially at this time of year. Many prisoners receive no outside support at all.

I don’t care if you send a Christmas card, a holiday card, or whatever. Neither will they.

Here is a list of prisoners who’d be delighted to get a card:

https://bobchatelle.net/please-write-to-a-prisoner

Unfortunately, New Hampshire prisoners are not allowed to receive greeting cards of any sort, picture postcards, or any typewritten or printed material. Only handwritten letters on stock paper are permitted. Here is a li nk to their cruel and draconian policy:

https://www.nh.gov/nhdoc/documents/5-26amendment.pdf

One wonders why the ACLU is not protesting this blatant violation of the First Amendment.

-Bob Chatelle