Today’s “Newspaper”, Part II

Assaulting my eyes from the newspaper box outside of Whiskey’s on Boylston/Gloucester this fine, blue-skyed morn, the following headline screamed at me in (highly unnecessary ALL CAPS): SEX FIENDS IN YOUR TOWN.
Why is this “newspaper” the number one news source (other than the Metro. Yes, the METRO) in Boston?
I just can’t take it. I couldn’t even bring myself to read more than the first few lines of this, this…trasch. They lost me at “residential pervert.”

3 Comments so far

  1. Cassford (unregistered) on July 9th, 2004 @ 4:59 am

    That jumped out at me, too. Alas, I live in one of the two towns profiled. A few months ago some of the parents got wind that a house had been sold to an agency that operates group homes for the mentally retarded. Because of the statewide sex offender registry, the neighbors found out that two of the residents are level 2 sex offenders.
    As someone with family members and far too many friends who have been sexually assaulted, I share the general concern that people are voicing. As someone directly affected by the trauma this crime inflicts on its victims, I understand the panic and distress. Yet I feel I have to say that the tone in town is getting hysterical.
    The two individuals are known to us and under supervision 24/7. The people we should be worrying about are the predators who are not identified. Almost half of the state’s sex offenders are not registered at all and a large percentage of the ones who are registered have changed their addresses. If we react to the knowledge of sex offenders in our midst by lighting our torches and driving them from our town, we have undermined the one tool we have to identify them and manage our interactions with them. We have ensured that offenders will disappear into anonymity. And that is where they are the most dangerous to our families.
    The other thing to keep in mind is that in 85 percent of cases, children are sexually assaulted by relatives, family friends, or someone known and trusted by the child. The image of sex offenders as waiting around the schoolyard and attacking children at random is overblown. The current climate is likely to do more harm than good.

  2. Heather (unregistered) on July 9th, 2004 @ 5:57 am

    Thank you for an intelligent and thoughtful response.
    You have hit the nail on the head in noting that these reactionary, “torch-lighting” tactics are in fact the root of the very problem we seek to avert.
    This is precisely the reason that it rails me to see these sorts of riot-inciting headlines which only aggravate the senses of this journal’s daily readership.
    But then again, I am a snooty Globe reader.

  3. Em (unregistered) on July 9th, 2004 @ 6:25 am

    The Globe is equally bad, INMO. It’s like a paper you would find in the the backwoods country. And I know because I am from the backwoods country! Anyway, phooey on all the Boston “papers”.

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