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Saturday, August 5, 2017

To Castrate or Not to Castrate? That is the Question.

Who among us would not like to punish convicted pedophiles or extremely violent rapists, Lorena Bobbitt-style? Alas, physical castration won't solve the problem. But mandated chemical castration- now there's an idea.

In 1996, California was the first state to set forth the use of chemical castration as a punishment for child molestation. The law stipulates that anyone convicted of child molestation with a minor under 13 years of age can be forced to take the testosterone lowering drug, Depo-Provera, if they are on parole after their second offense. At least eight other states have mandated the treatment for repeat offenders since then. Connecticut is not one of those states- but it should be. One state representative is currently proposing the legislation. Not coincidentally, Kevin Skulczyck is a retired Department of Corrections Officer and therefore familiar with the dangerous threat that high-risk sex offenders pose to society when they are released from incarceration. Just as a leopard does not change its spots, a pedophile or a serial rapist does not change his (or her) sick ways.

While on death row in Connecticut, Michael Ross voluntarily took Depo-Provera. Read the book, The Man in the Monster, and you will get a sense of just how deranged the mind of a serial killer and rapist can be. Ross couldn't even watch a television show without later fantasizing about sadistically harming the female characters. He masturbated with such frequency that his penis skin was raw and bloody. I mention this disgusting image to bring home a larger point- sexual predators like Ross are monsters, and they need to be subdued. With Ross, the daily Depo-Provera treatment resulted in a significant diminishment in his sexual thoughts and urges.
Recommended summer reading....

The arguments against mandated chemical castration for repeat and violent sexual offenders are weak, at best. Yes, it would be a grave injustice if a man was wrongfully convicted of a sex crime and forced to temporarily or even permanently alter his libido and suffer potential negative side effects from the drug. However, take a close look at the current laws on the books and you will see that this treatment is administered to repeat offenders whose actions are of the most heinous variety- the ones that you cannot believe are ever released from prison in the first place....

Many Americans feel that pedophiles and violent sex offenders should be put to death. That option aside, what are some other ways to constrain these men (and women), after they are released from prison?

The New Britain serial killer suspect that I am currently writing a book about gave me a box full of The Whole Shebang potato chips and cheese curls after our last visit. I went back to my office and looked at the ingredients, wondering if saltpeter (a term referencing either potassium or sodium nitrate) was on the list. According to popular myth, the chemical was put into soldiers' food to reduce carnal urges. (It was not, but it is an interesting tale.) In any case, The Whole  Shebang chips, sold only in prison commissaries across the nation (unless you want to buy a rare bag for $12.00 on Amazon), did not contain saltpeter- and they were extremely tasty chips. So we can rule out The Whole Shebang chips as a treatment alternative.
Very good chips when pared with box Chardonnay. 
Seriously though, why not put a small chip (silicon, that is) in the forehead of a dangerous repeat sex offender to provide real time video, not unlike the SeaChange cameras depicted in The Circle, starring Tom Hanks? Parole officers could then see what the parolee is doing 24/7. Should he deliberately approach a child, sirens would go off immediately at the local police station. The idea may seem ludicrous, but it is in fact a technological possibility. Civil rights lawyers would scream foul, of course, stating that doing so is a privacy violation. I would counter that the repeat and violent sex offender gave up the right to privacy when he (or she) committed a second offense. We already put them on registered sex offender lists. This would simply take the precaution one step further. Just imagine the impact that it would have on the escalating crime of child trafficking, worldwide.

As the saying goes: "Desperate times call for desperate measures...."

The Circle, 2017. Although the movie is getting bad reviews- the concept is interesting.
For more information on present day Connecticut laws regarding the involuntary medication of prisoners with mental illnesses, start with Connecticut General Statutes 17a-566 and keep reading....http://law.justia.com/codes/connecticut/2012/title-17a/chapter-319i/section-17a-566

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