Though this blog is was originally intended as a resource for offenders in Massachusetts, much of what I write about is applicable to sex offenders in every other state and many countries around the world, especially in Western Europe. Even other non-sex offenders trying to navigate prison, probation and parole, or employment and education opportunities can glean relevant information from this blog and apply it to help overcome their own struggles.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Sanctioned Hateful Rhetoric

 I posted this in response the usual ignorant/hateful comments you see in the discussion section of any online article related to sex offenders. http://hereandnow.wbur.org/2011/03/08/minnesota-sex-offender
There really isn't enough to write when it comes to people calling for my castration (so 20th century, come on) and/or murder.  
As someone who sexually offended against a child when I was 20, spent 4 years in state prison, and am finishing up a 10 year probation sentence, I'm pretty well informed with how being a sex offender can affect ones life as well as the lives of those who care about him. It's interesting to see how a story on a sex offender acts as Rorschach Test of sorts. The blustery posts in any comment section of a sex offender related article calling for castration or murder do nothing to advance the issue to any semblance of educated understanding. I find people calling for the murder, any murder, but in this case murder of those convicted of a sex offense, appalling and the fact that rhetoric is tolerated only points to a level of sanctioned hate facilitated against sex offenders. I accept the sentiments of punishment and vengeance - normal human emotions - but a red line should be drawn as to the extent of either.

I am 34 now, went to a state college here in MA right when I got out of prison, got a BA in psychology, have had and continue to cultivate wonderful relationships with people who know my background and support me. I am writing about my experiences in my blog to help others convicted sex offenders and their families navigate the onerous world of living as sex offender in the United States.
The vast majority of us don't reoffend and look to redefine our lives in more healthy and productive ways. 
-Richard