In light of the tragic disappearance and possible rape and murder of a San Diego teenager Chelsea King, Congress should consider passing a law that requires sex offenders to be permanently castrated and require dangerous and violent sex offenders whom have not responded to any type of rehabilitation be segregated from the public. John Gardner III, a registered sex offender has been arrested for the disappearance of Chelsea King and the police plan to charge him with rape and first-degree murder. Though Chelsea King’s body has not yet been found, her clothing was found and it was the DNA evidence left on the clothing that led the police to John Gardner III.
John Gardner III, a notorious sex offender and in year 2000, "plead guilty to committing a forcible lewd act on a 13-year-old girl after she testified that she escaped after he tried to strangle her. He served five years of a six-year prison sentence and was released even though a psychiatrist told the court that Gardner "would be a continued danger to underage girls in the community." Adding more fuel to this controversy, though Gardner registered himself as a sex offender living in Lake Elsinore after he left prison but he often stays with his mother in Rancho Bernardo, which is near an elementary school. It is up to the convict to update his address and if he fails to follow the proper procedure of reporting and conditions of his release, he will be re-arrested, but by then it may be too late as was in the case of Chelsea King.
California is under severe budget constraint to enforce the law and monitor convicted sex offenders but it is absolutely imperative that the task force that monitors sex offenders be well funded. This concerns the public safety of children and should remain top priority. Research has well documented that sex offenders have a high rate of recidivism and a majority of them do not respond effectively to treatment. Sex offenders are easily given in to their impulses and just like a junkie looking to score his next fix, sex offenders will surreptitiously and anonymously seek out victims to satisfy their urges. Research also shows that the more practiced the sex offender is, the more successful he becomes at grooming, ensnaring and attacking his victims. An average serial sex offender can have as many as 400 victims in his lifetime.
Just like murderers who lose their freedoms either by life imprisonment or capital punishment, sex offenders should suffer the same fate. Since prolonged prison terms for sex offenders is monetarily not feasible and unconstitutional because a murder was not committed, repeated sex offenders should be castrated. Direct all the resources that are currently used towards counseling and therapy programs for sex offenders to a castration program, which would be a better use of taxpayer funds.
Most experts in the psychiatry and psychology disciplines have come to a general consensus that there is no “cure” for that kind of pathology and that therapy “helps” an offender with deviant sexual urges but cannot guarantee that they won’t re-offend. This is not good enough for the public, as a responsible and civil society, it is the duty of the government to protect the most vulnerable, so tragedies like Chelsea King can be avoided. It is the main responsibility of parents to keep their children safe from the dangers of the outside world, having said that, parents should not have to avoid and keep a lookout for sex offenders in the community by constantly checking updates on Megan’s Law Registry, especially of the registry is not always accurate about the sex offender’s location. And if a family with young children finds out that a sex offender is indeed living next door to them and they don’t live near parks, schools, playgrounds—or any other place where children congregate, there is nothing much the family could do besides tell everyone in the neighborhood that a sex offender is among them. Sex offenders should either be neutralized or kept away from the public.
Given all the known and registered sex offenders (don’t forget about the ones yet to be caught) on the national database, the government would have to build another Guantanamo Bay just to house them all. If the government calculates the cost of housing current incarcerated sex offenders and the cost it would take to monitor, “rehabilitate” and counsel them once they are out of prison, when they inevitably re-offend, and the subsequent cost of prosecution and incarceration that is to follow, the government will be better off in the long run by building a permanent prison to contain them. Of course they should first be offered the more humane option of castration in exchange for freedom, but if they refuse castration, then they can live out the rest of their lives among their own kind.