Thomas Sowell

"Supervised" parole is one of those soothing phrases. The reality is an occasional reporting to a parole officer who has huge numbers of parolees -- who cannot be controlled the other 99 percent of the time when they are not reporting.

The latest pretense of control is the global positioning satellite which can be attached to sexual predators.

Think about it. What would a global positioning satellite have told us when a sexual predator had two girls imprisoned in his basement? That he was home. What reassurance!

While rising public pressures to get serious about protecting children have forced some state legislatures to make some efforts in that direction, resistance and evasion are still the order of the day in many places.

In California, the state legislature is considering bills to use global positioning satellites to track released sex offenders -- but only those deemed "dangerous."

The sponsor of one of these bills describes GPS as "incredibly valuable technology." Not doubt it is -- if you are lost and want to find your way. On the other hand, if you don't want to be found, you can always take it off.

The bills in the California state legislature are presented as alternatives to a ballot initiative by which the voters could impose "Jessica's Law" with some real teeth in it as far as sentencing is concerned, instead of these political alternatives to reality.

Thomas Sowell

Thomas Sowell is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institute and author of The Housing Boom and Bust.

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