When actor Tim Allen was nominated for the Golden Globe or Emmy awardsfor his successful comedy series or Disney movies, did they announce himas “Convicted Drug Trafficker, Tim Allen”? Then why would the Miami Herald announce that a former FIU baseball star that was honored with throwing out the first pitch this year was charged with a crime sixteen years ago?
Many successful businessmen, athletes and celebrities have criminal pasts. They have been given the opportunity to move forward and achievethe success for which they are recognized. Why is it that ‘sex offenders’ are not given that opportunity?
Today, the Miami Herald posted a story about Dennis Wiseman throwing out the first pitch at the FIU season opener (see: http://www.miamiherald.com/2014/02/18/
Wiseman was a former star pitcher at the school. He is an avid supporter of FIU athletics. He is COO of a radiology company where he’s been continuously employed for the past 9 years. What should otherwise be the story of a successful local being recognized for his athletic contribution to his alma mater, turned into a shaming piece because in 1997 Wiseman received a withheld adjudication for a sex offense.
While nobody would defend his crime, or any crime for that matter, one has to wonder why sex offenders are forced to be stigmatized years or decades after their offenses, while others are allowed to become productive members of society. Mr. Wiseman had apparently successfully completed probation in 2002 and had no other run-ins with the law. What’s the point in shaming him now? Worse yet; what’s the point in shaming his employer?
Florida Action Committee (FAC), founded in 2006, is a state-wide consortium of concerned citizens and professionals whose purpose is to promote the prevention of sexual abusewhile preserving the safety and dignity of all citizens through carefully structured laws targeting the truly violent, forced, and/or dangerous predatory acts of sex. FAC believes that many aspects of the current approach to sex offenders seriously undermine justice and actually increase the threat of sexual assault against others, particularly children. FAC opposes a publicized registry of sex offenders and seeks to bring an end to the humiliation of people who have already paid for their crimes. FAC asserts that only by supporting justice for all people—offenders and victims alike can a truly safe society be built and secured for all Americans.