New Orleans prostitutes recategorized as "sex offenders"?

IANAL, but this seems pretty damn stupid and pointless.

“The way Louisiana’s habitual offender law works, if you challenge your sentence in court and lose, and it’s a third offense, the mandatory minimum is 20 years. The maximum is life.”

You’d think the people of New Orleans would have more important issues than hookers. :rolleyes:

How are there still laws on the books criminalizing consensual sexual activity based on what body parts are involved?

Prostitution should just be legal. Period.

But regulated.

Freedom. Period. This law isn’t just stupid, it’s evil. There has never, ever, ever been a shred of evidence to support the notion that we can debate about whether or not prostitution can be allowed to happen. It will happen. It’s just where, how, and how badly people get hurt. Once decriminalized, any “victim-less crime” can be regarded as a health issue and pretty much solved through voluntary treatment, and of course education and support. And for a tiny fraction of the cost.

“She also has to purchase and mail postcards with her picture to everyone in the neighborhood informing them of her conviction.”

Nice touch.

Can she mark it as an business expense? Advertising I think.

Regardless of whether or not you support the legalization of prostitution it’s pretty sick to make prostitutes register as sexual offenders. That should be a category reserved for rapist and others who commit sexually based crimes against those who aren’t willing. I sure as hell hope johns are added to this list of sexual offenders.

From the article cited in the OP:

I would have thought that Lawrence v. Texas made such laws unconstitutional. Unfortunately, most street walkers wouldn’t have the money to challenge the law or the conviction.

The fun bit is that, in the event of emergency (say, hurricane/flood), sex offenders must report to specific shelters designated for their use.

Yup. We’re going to take already marginalized, vulnerable women, let them get well and truly freaked out by the next big natural disaster to hit NOLA, and then shove them in a building full of real sex offenders.


I wonder which hurricane shelter Sen. David Vitter would gravitate to for his post-disaster photo-ops…

wow - seems like there are some ex-post facto issues in the Federal Law as described, in addition to what Giles said.

A poster on MetaFilter dug out the Louisiana Supreme Court’s take on things as they relate to Lawrence Vs. Texas (PDF)

And this is why we oppose cruel and unusual punishments for everyone. Because when we start making exceptions, even for the scum of the earth, it threatens the rights of everyone. It sets a precedent that puts everyone in danger of losing their rights.

Sex offender registration laws are a bad idea even when we’re applying them to the most depraved child rapists out there (those people you keep in prison instead of sending back out into the community with a scarlet letter), but maybe this attempt (far from an isolated incident) to expand the scope of these stupid and dangerous laws will snap people out of their “first they came for…” style complacency.

Or maybe I’m being too optimistic.

AMEN!!! Why not get them into rehab? There was an article in the paper about a sheriff who was getting truck stop prosistuties into rehab.