The Bad Result of a Well-Intentioned Law (10/30/07) - WDRB 41 Louisville News

The Bad Result of a Well-Intentioned Law (10/30/07)

Former honor student Genarlow Wilson probably shouldn't have had sex with a teenager four years ago. But the state of Georgia acted much more outrageously when it sentenced him to ten years in prison for felony child molestation.

Why? Because this was a case of Wilson having consensual sex with a 15-year-old girl -- when he was only 17 himself. And like it or not, thousands of kids engage in the same behavior every day.

Yes, that's a big problem. But none of them are marked for life as convicted felons.

A reasonable prosecutor would have understood such distinctions. But many prosecutors are more interested in convictions than justice. That's a fact. And as a result, Wilson's been behind bars for the past two years.

Luckily, Georgia's Supreme Court released Wilson last week, ruling his punishment was "cruel and unusual." But frighteningly, the vote was only 4-3.

Justice is supposed to be blind, but if those three dissenting judges still can't see the inherent injustice of this wildly disproportionate sentence, they're setting new standards in that regard.

If Genarlow Wilson is a criminal, there are hundreds of people watching me right now who are harboring plenty of others under their own roofs.

What do you think? Call, and let us know.

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