Human Rights for Rapists?
Yesterday, he expressed disgust at the Supreme Court’s ruling that it was a breach of offenders’ human rights to be put on the sex offenders register for life, describing the decision as “flying in the face of common sense.”
We’re being told, reassured by supporters of the changes that the bar for appeals to be removed from the register will be set “as high as possible”. Applications for appeals will only be accepted 15 years after being released from jail, police will have the final say and there will be no right of appeal against a decision to keep an offender on the register.
But should Sex Offenders have the same rights as every other Tom, Dick and Harry?
It’s one of those shocking sounding headlines that I’m sure will have Daily Mail readers jumping on the bandwagon and mouthing off and probably blaming the Government for allowing paedophiles and rapists to roam free.
A bit of homework later, they may be more clued up about why the changes will be made, but I wouldn’t blame them for being just as angry, shocked and appalled that many of the 48,000 offenders currently on the register, which was set up in 1997, could have the right to appeal.
The ruling comes after two cases in which offenders successfully appealed against life-long registration, arguing that it was incompatible with their right to privacy. One of these men had been convicted on two counts of rape of a child under 13 along with other sexual offences.
This doesn’t mean to say that public protection from criminals will be weakened. Nick Clegg assured that stringent checks would be in place and the Government “will not let our guard down” against those who commit “almost evil crimes.” Almost evil? Almost? Think again Cleggy.
I could get all deep and meaningful and discuss the ins and outs of every side of the debate. But only one thing stands out to me.
Rather than getting wrapped up in every human beings human rights, we should first consider what they have taken away from others and what lasting impact sexual offences can have on victims.
Those who win an appeal will be checked, yes. They may be considered ‘reformed’. They will have done their time and proved themselves in many ways. It would be unrealistic to have a vision of, and worry about large numbers of such ex-offenders causing an increase in the rate of reoffending. This won’t result in paedeophiles roaming around freely, no matter what the tabloids will try to scare their readers into thinking and fearing. But, and to me, this is a massive but, even if a change in law meant that ONE person slipped through the net and committed a sexual crime that could, and should have been prevented, then it’s one person too many.david cameron, government, human rights, nick clegg, privacy, sex offenders register
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