Re "Court Rejects Megan's Law Challenge," Feb. 24: It's most disturbing to see that the so-called Megan's laws, which undermine some of the most essential protections afforded by the U.S. Constitution, have been upheld by the Supreme Court. No doubt, the judicial decision will further fuel the relentless sex panic that has swept the nation for the past 20 years, and embolden numerous outlaws to resort to impulsive and barbaric actions to rid their communities of perceived sex offenders--even those whose "crime" was nothing more than sodomy or other consensual sex acts.
What's next? A court decision upholding the rights of vigilante sex patrols to tar, feather, lynch and execute? As this century draws to a close, this country's legal and societal definition of what constitutes "civil protection" becomes ever more perverted and malevolent.
* It nauseates me to know that some people actually consider the rights of convicted sex offenders more important than the safety of our children. Opponents of Megan's Law claim that the law, which requires convicted sex offenders to register with police after their release from prison, amounts to a second, after-the-fact punishment for the same crime. This is ludicrous.
Hamilton Square, N.J., the town where the abduction, sexual molestation and murder of 7-year-old Megan Kanka took place, is my hometown. Hamilton Square is a suburban, family-oriented community where parents feel safe in allowing children to play freely in their yards and ride their bicycles in the streets. Not exactly the proper place for someone with a history of child molestation to reside.
Megan's Law allows a community to be forearmed by being forewarned. Under this law, the presence of a released sex offender who poses a risk to the community is made public to neighbors and schools. I have no doubt that if the community had been alerted to the danger posed by Jesse Timmendequas, today Megan Kanka would be a happy 11-year-old.
PATRICIA A. PREVATIL