Sex Offenders & Halloween
By bgthinking on October 30, 2009
There’ll be no Halloween this year…well at least not for many sex offenders in TN.
I was pleased to read in the Commercial Appeal that the State of TN has put some very strict regulations in place for sex offenders concerning the Halloween holiday. The regulations apply to those offenders who are under the supervision of the State Board of Probation and Parole. These restrictions include the following things that sex offenders are not allowed to do for the Halloween holiday:
–They cannot take any child, including their own, trick-or-treating.
–Neither they, nor anyone in their home, can answer the door to trick-or-treaters, or give out candy or treats.
–Their homes cannot be decorated for Halloween, either inside or outside.
–They cannot host Halloween parties at their homes and cannot wear costumes.
–They cannot go to haunted houses, corn mazes, hay rides or any other seasonal activity.
–They cannot be at any function where children are gathered, including private residences.
For the most part the list seems pretty fair. But, not being allowed to hang Halloween decorations outside OR inside their homes seems pretty far-fetched and ridiculous. The rest of the list is understandable. If you have been convicted of a sex crime, especially one involving a child, you shouldn’t be in any location or situation where you may be tempted again. (but wouldn’t every holiday OR every day possibly include something “tempting”)
I can truly understand the State’s position on setting these restrictions. I understand that the goal of these restrictions is to protect the public, especially the children from sex offenders. But not allowing them to participate in any kind of Halloween activities with their own children doesn’t seem sensible. If so how safe are their children living in the same residences with them? How safe are the neighbor’s children or the children they see at the grocery store or even at church? And if the state is going to set limitations for Halloween, what will be next, harvest festivals and Christmas caroling? Will they also stop them from going to places such as amusement parks? Kids love to go there too!
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