Sunday, November 25, 2007

Subdivision bans sex offenders

An Amarillo subdivision has decided to ban sex offenders. The ban will be imposed on future developments, and will not have an effect on previously existing homes. The ban restricts sex offenders from owning or inhabiting any property in the new development of the subdivision, the Woodlands. Developers have added these restrictions to keep the neighborhood safer, and a more comfortable place to live. They want to give the community a peace of mind, not having to wonder if their neighbor may sneak into their homes in the middle of the night and violate them. Sex offenders are likely to be repeat offenders, and they want to lessen the chances of anyone being harmed in their community. Adverse effects of this ban have also been considered in implementing this plan of action. Nay Sayers think that this ban will group convicted sex offenders together, causing a violent community. Not all sex offenders are on the same level, some have committed much harsher crimes than others have. The ban has been written in the bi laws of the homeowner association‘s rules and regulations, and any violators of this rule will be forced to sale their homes and move out of the neighborhood. It is ingenious of the neighborhood developers to enact such a ban as a crime retardant. If you do the crime you do the time, and you should not be accessible to the same rights and freedoms of model citizens. A sign in your yard is not enough; it is about time that they take full consequences for their actions. It sometimes takes a lifetime to have a lesson learned.


Melissa said...

I have to say that I disagree with Dominick on this issue. An article from the El Paso times refers to a subdivision in Amarillo, which excludes sex offenders from purchasing or occupying property. Other subdivisions throughout Texas also have these similar bans. Federal law prohibits discrimination based on factors including race, religion, gender and age. This is a property rights issue granted by the Texas Association of Realtors, giving property owners the right to implement the restriction. I agree with Greg Lines, the chair of the American Civil Liberties Union of Texas, whom believes that it is immoral to clump a wide range of offenders together, segregating them from society. Where do you draw the line with crimes? You could be living next door to someone who chopped up their husband or wife, and spent 25 years in jail. They are paroled, and not registered as a sex offender, and none of that information is as available. Is a crack house preferred over some guy that went streaking, and was then labeled a sex offender? The subdivision did not say anything about excluding ex-cons. I just don't think it is fair, nor makes sense in the grand scheme. As a society, we have to include sex offenders in order to make steps in the right direction to fix the problem. Extremely strict laws in Florida has caused many sex offenders to live under a bridge, because they have no where else they are allowed to live. Their probation officers visit them under the bridge, like it is their legal address. I feel that if we continue to encourage these ideas of separation, an even larger social problem will eventually develop.

Lundin said...

I was so happy after I read Dominick's article about sex offenders being banned from certain subdivisions. This is a reason why I love living in Texas. I think it is wonderful that sex offenders are being banned from certain neighborhoods. I know there are many people who would argue that this is a violation of the constitution, but we as law obiding citizens are loosing our freedom everyday to criminals. People are growing more and more scared to go outside, go shopping in the evening, take walks, and doing everyday things. There are alot of people who live in fear, and it is about time that a neighborhood do something about it. This is such a selling point for this subdivision. It is true what Dominick said about sex offenders, and how they are more likely to repeat their crime, than other criminals. There are many doctors out there who insist that sex offenders can't be cured. I think this is exciting for the community. Thank you Dominick for brining this to our attention.

-Lea Lundin