January 5, 2006  ·  Lessig

Two hours ago, New Jersey Acting Governor Richard Codey signed into law significant modifications to the New Jersey Charitable Immunity Act. No longer is a charity immune for negligence in hiring an employee who commits sex abuse on a child. This is fantastic news for New Jersey, and for children in New Jersey. It obviously strengthens the appeal in the case I am involved with: If a charity is not immune from liability for its negligence in hiring an employee, it would be bizarre to imagine them immune from liability for intentional torts. But the big news is the bigger picture: It just got much better for kids in that state.

  • rich

    …and much worse for people wrongfully convicted of sex abuse.

  • Kate M.

    How many children are abused, molested, raped, murdered per annum than people wrongfully convicted of sex abuse, “rich”? I’m as concerned as the next guy about the injustice of wrongfully convicting someone, but let’s get our priorities right, here.

  • Anonymous

    Kate:

    The more severe punishments are, the more important it is for the number of wrongful convictions to be zero. Of course, as far as I understood, this news does not in itself cause alarm in this respect.

    In particularly disgusting crimes such as child molestation, terrorism, and slavery, many people think that some “collateral damage” is justified when sentencing the guilty.

    It’s not, and it never will be, no matter how large an atrocity. I hope you did not mean that it should be.

  • poptones

    Oh god, so now “terrorism” and “child molestation” share the same headline? PLEASE!

    While I applaud any laws that remove special priviledges for non-profits (actually, I think they should be abolished altogether) I do not understand this incessant knee jerk reaction regarding matters of childhood sexuality. Get over your puritan upbringing and look at the world around you.

    I don’t know a person who did not have sexual encounters as a child. Does this mean eveyr one of us is warped in some way? Of course every last one of us is screwed up in our own special and unique way – that doesn’t mean it’s because someone touched our wee before we were old enough to have been brainwashed by the puritan ethic that has completely perverted the US.

    I’m pissed off and the whole world owes me! Now get them panties off, mister potty mouth!

    “Vanessa Lutz,” from “Freeway”

  • three blind mice

    Get over your puritan upbringing and look at the world around you.

    damn poptones. given up caffeine for the new year?

    criminal child abuse is a serious matter. adults who rape children – and let’s call it what it is – and the organisations who enable them should not be granted immunity. a change in the law to this effect seems hardly like “incessant knee-jerking.”

    further to what anonymous wrote, this is true for ANY law. some percentage of innocent people always fall victim to bad laws, corrupt prosecutors, incompetent defense (or if one is black and poor all three.) it’s unfortunate, but why should this be of particular concern in cases of criminal child abuse? some states execute people in error.

    no government bureaucracy is going to produce an error-free result. economists call it rational ignorance. it is unfortunate, but it anyone can think of a better way to administer justice, please let us know.

  • Joseph Pietro Riolo

    To Three Blind Mice:

    I wonder if you would still say the same thing if
    injustice occurs to you. If you three guys (I
    am assuming that you all are male) were locked
    up in jail for life based on false allegations
    that you did gang rape on a young girl along
    with corrupt prosecutor and incompetent defense,
    would you still say, “That’s unfortunate.”?

    It is just too easy for people to be indifference
    to injustice as long as it occurs to other people
    but it is just too amazing how their perspective
    would change suddenly if injustice actually occurs
    to them.

    Joseph Pietro Riolo
    <josephpietrojeungriolo@gmail.com>
    <riolo@voicenet.com>

    Public domain notice: I put all of my expressions in this
    comment in the public domain.

  • three blind mice

    It is just too easy for people to be indifference
    to injustice as long as it occurs to other people
    but it is just too amazing how their perspective
    would change suddenly if injustice actually occurs
    to them.

    and how would you feel if you were to fall victim to someone who SHOULD have been prosecuted, but a system fearful of making an error stood frozen and did nothing or was forbidden by statute from doing anything or was encouraged by the cardinal to look the other way.

    why do you always seem to insist on looking at only one side of the coin?

  • Joseph Pietro Riolo

    To Three Blind Mice:

    Naturally, I would feel outraged.

    I was not looking only at one side of coin. I
    was disputing your as well as Kate M.’s attitude
    toward injustice. It is not just “collateral
    damage”, to quote anonymous. It is a
    manifestation of our failure to strive for
    more perfect justice.

    Injustice to very few people at the cost of
    better justice for majority is not just unfortunate.
    These few people are not at lower priority than
    the majority. Injustice can’t be rationalized
    away. It is a constant thorn to our society.
    That is the attitude that we should adopt.

    Joseph Pietro Riolo
    <josephpietrojeungriolo@gmail.com>
    <riolo@voicenet.com>

    Public domain notice: I put all of my expressions in this
    comment in the public domain.

  • poptones

    criminal child abuse is a serious matter. adults who rape children – and let’s call it what it is – and the organisations who enable them should not be granted immunity. a change in the law to this effect seems hardly like “incessant knee-jerking.”

    The problem is the societal knee jerk reaction to any notions of children having any form of “sexuality.” When anyone has dared, in this society, dare even mention the idea that these children might be better off if they were not “protected” from their sexuality until their “delicate psyches” had formed they were basically run out of town on a rail. I’m not talking about pedo priests and frustrated pornographers here – I’m talking about well educated people who see the damage this utter perversion is doing to our culture and have had the guts to speak out – people like Jocelyn Elders. Look what happened to her when she (OH MY GOD) suggested children be taught it’s ok to explore their sexuality in an otherwise safe and healthy way.

    People are forbidden by law from taking cameras to their kids sporting events or to beaches, for chrissake, because a bunch of vitriolic control freaks are worried about some errant perv committing what is, at its core, a thought crime – that of photographing and then whacking off over a bit of pubescent flesh. It’s a complete fucking witch hunt and the kids (and all of society) pay the price for the sake of offending a few right wing and left wing zealots.

    It seems to be a symptom of english speaking nations. Australia, Great Britain, Canada, the US… these societies are absolutely off the wall (especially you brits).

    Must be something about the English language making people insane… so much the better I polish up my Russian.

  • three blind mice

    The problem is the societal knee jerk reaction to any notions of children having any form of “sexuality.”

    poptones, children are not little adults. the problem here is adults – like the ridiculous jocelyn elders – projecting, or forcing,their views of sexuality onto children. kudos to the NJ state assembly for ignoring the sensitivity police and making adults responsible for their actions.

  • poptones

    the problem here is adults – like the ridiculous jocelyn elders – projecting, or forcing,their views of sexuality onto children.

    I don’t which offers the better “proof” of my earlier assertion: your comment above or shinat-sans rambling, nonsensical interjections.

    If language is a virus, English is the virus that makes you stupid…

  • poptones
  • A

    WTF is up with some of you commenters?

    Lessig’s plaintiff is not having a knee-jerk reaction to the concept of childhood sexuality; nor is Codey’s law one that would increase the likelihood of wrongful criminal convictions. Lessig’s client is suing civilly for ABUSE of a child by a — & here’s the big point — NON-child; & Codey’s law makes it easier for an abused child to recover, CIVILLY, from a nonprofit entity. No worries, sex offenders & free-thinking pediatric sexologists — these developments aren’t going to affect you.

    How about getting your facts right, _then_ commenting??!

    –A.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003407333569 Dedi

      Posted on Great to hear from you. Our creative angcey Evolved Digital (www.evolveddigital.tv) know all the secrets and I am sure they’ll be happy to give you some quick guidance if you need any

    • http://www.bing.com/ Holland

      I went to tons of links before this, what was I tihnnikg?

  • poptones

    Equating “child molestation” with “terrorism” in the contemporary context is “knee jerk” – it is a tired rhetorical tactic worthy only of beltway politicians making braindead pleas to a public fattened on junk food sound bites in a parietal attempt to cast their pet rider as politically untouchable as it careens toward the realm of “law.”

    Perhaps you should try keeping up with the entire conversation…

  • Judith

    Wrongful accusations and convictions of sexual abuse result in devastation to children, they may lose a safe and caring parent to a malicious, vindictive or abusive parent or suffer far, far worse. For example, my husband was wrongfully accused by my children’s father of sexually abusing our children. The accuser had previously spent 9 months in prison for domestic violence that was perpetrated in the presence of our children. The children were subjected to excessive questions numerous times by several police depts. DHS workers, counselors, doctors, nurses, sexual assault nurse examiners and child abuse clinics and were examined by such clinics numerous times as well. Although no sexual abuse was ever substantiated, and no evidence of sexual abuse was ever found, my husband was not allowed to see even his own children whom he has shared parental responsibilities for during the lengthy investigations. All of our children suffered immensely through this process and it was absolutely devastating for them and they are still in counseling years later. My daughter is terrified of doctors. Both children have been diagnosed with PTSD. Both children wish the laws that were designed to protect them from sexual abuse could have somehow been designed as well to protect them from false allegations and discourage the perpetrators of such.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003407316424 Cleci

      genome468 on January 14, 2011 i checked out your site. not bad. its done prtety much like craigslist so i enjoyed the familiarity. A question tho. how long has the site been up? This can grow to be a big thing just like craigslist.. good luck to ya

    • http://gvrwtliiwycf.com/ wrgzoixxs

      rTdQHJ shytvgdophgb

    • http://mccgoiyojmxl.com/ slxakzaat

      Gqcs7f , [url=http://isttmwjdpepf.com/]isttmwjdpepf[/url], [link=http://llljjgysiefs.com/]llljjgysiefs[/link], http://glkqstixyzxb.com/

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003407347536 Chivo

    e.l Posted on For one thing unless they’re puilsbhed you mean writers’.Only you can decide when, as it needs to fit round you and your members’ schedules.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003407330943 Nunun

    you can call me e Posted on The Simple TruthTruth SerumTruth or ConsequencesHonesty or BustIt actually sondus like an interesting blog. I wouldn’t mind checking it out when it is up and running!