COURT HEARS DEBATE ON MEGAN’S LAWS
Are laws that require registration and publication of information about sexual offenders, shaming laws, like those in earlier days requiring the wearing a scarlet letter A for adultery? The Supreme Court debated yesterday how far states can go to help the public keep tabs on paroled sex offenders living or working nearby. The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments on the constitutionality of so-called Megan's laws in Connecticut and Alaska. Megan's Law is named after 7 year old Megan Kanka from New Jersey, who was raped and strangled by a twice convicted sex offender. Some justices seemed concerned that offenders listed on online sex-offender registries have trouble finding jobs or a place to live, while recognizing that people want to know about potentially dangerous neighbors.