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Governing by consent of the rabble…

An open letter to the Portland Oregonian…

Page D1 of the January 16th issue of the Oregonian featured an article titled, “Governing by consent of the rabble” by Andy Parker.

In short, Mr. Parker took umbrage at residents in the Milwaukie, Oregon area who are fighting against the purchase of a “Sex-offender Motel” in their neighborhood.

Parker’s first point seems to be that since the county Sheriffs office doesn’t have the manpower to commit to 24/7 oversight of all of the other sex offenders in Clackamas County, it’s unfair for local citizens to discriminate against these sex-offenders just because they’re mentally ill.

He call’s this an “irrational bias.”

Second, Parker seems to consider it unfair that the local government would take steps to halt the purchase and opening of a sex-offender motel, based solely on the outcry of the local residents, simply because the planners of this facility are a “non-profit organization.”

To quote Mr. Parker: “Dozens of residents complained last month about a facility for mentally ill felons planned for the site.” A site similar to one in Cornelius that included “a sex-offender who had raped a young girl” These quotes are not mine, but directly from the article, but please note the term “felons”

 All this despite the fact the Parker’s own article opens with the statement, “Most of the dangerous predatory sex-offenders living in the Milwaukie area – five in all – live in a small motel a couple of blocks north of the city…” and “some of them are back in jail. One has disappeared.” 

Well, that certainly alleviates our concerns, huh?

Parker also assures us that such facilities are run by “professionals who do good work.”

Okay, time for a little personal perspective here. I worked in the “mental heath” field for ten years, both as a daily care giver and as a facility administrator. What qualifications were required of me for these positions?

I had to have reliable transportation, and be able to start immediately. Not exactly an overwhelming endorsement for the “professionals” in this field.

Yet, Parker suggests that we, the “rabble” who work, live, and raise our families in these neighborhoods have an “irrational bias” towards mentally ill predatory sex-offenders.

I would suggest to Mr. Parker that our “irrational bias” is not based on his over-use of the politically-sympathetic term “mentally ill” but on the other half of that diagnosis, “predatory sex offender.”

Mr. Parker, I have a young daughter and, personally, I don’t care if a person is “mentally ill,” “emotionally challenged,” or a cone-head from the planet Remulak, I will do everything in my power to keep her, and my neighborhoods, safe from your “predatory sex offenders.”

I don’t care if they’re “mentally ill” and I don’t care if they’re “supervised” I don’t want them in my neighborhood and I don’t want them near my children.

“Governing by consent of the rabble?” Yes, Mr. Parker…that’s what we call Democracy.




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4 thoughts on “Governing by consent of the rabble…

  1. I am with you Perry! I would also suggest that Mr. Parker stay in one of these “well supervised” facilities for one weekend and see just how supervised the state considers these facilities. I happen to have a sister living in a “supervised metal health facilities”. The supervisors all quit and they have yet to find replacements for the staff (that was about 5-6 months ago). Even when there were two “on-site” managers, one actually was only in the facility about 4 hours a week to keep some obligatory office hours and the other was unreachable most of the time. In the year that she has been there, I have seen one manager one time and that was the day she signed the papers to move in. In the mean time nearly every weekend there are police called to the facility. The offenses range from noise ordinance violations to assault, rape, attempted murder, drug overdoses (regularly) and the expected pschotic episodes by an entire facility of mental patients with NO ONE SUPERVISING medications or anything else. Mr. Parker has no clue what he is talking about. I have a sister in one of these facilities and I wouldn’t want it in my neighborhood. It is bad enough I have to be at one three to four times a week with my three young children (who by the way never leave my site and rarely even go in. We stay in the van waiting for my sister to come out.)

  2. I just for the life of me, can’t understand why people like this are miffed when society tries to protect their children. If there was a rabid animal running around the neighborhood, would anyone scratch their head when parents pull their kids in and call animal control to come and get rid of it? While human predators are not animals, they pose as much of a threat to the safety of the most vulnerable among us. I wonder, is it possible that there is somehow the unspeakable thought that a sexual predator is not as dangerous, because their offense is of a sexual nature? Would Mr. Parker have the same opinion if this was going to be a “motel” for mentally ill serial killers? Would he be as condiscending? I wouldn’t imagine so. The problem is, I think, people like Parker completely underestimate the effects of sexual abuse – in any form – on a child and their developement, and a society that has become desensitized to perversion. Lord help us.

    So, I’ve heard it asked before “So then, where are these people supposed to go?”. I hate to say this, but my answer is I…..Don’t…..Care. Just far far away from anyone they could ever hurt again. I’d rather see some energy, resources, and discussion on how to help the people victimized. I’m not suggesting we don’t help people who are mentally-ill, but I think there’s an appropriate venue for that – and it’s not in the middle of a neighborhood.

  3. dinana on said:

    When St John’s opened a parole/probation office 2 blocks from our house without notification, we neighbors got upset. St John’s is at the end of the peninsula and the city/county was making it a “social service” dumping ground. This meant bringing people into an area where they did not live, that was really a “dead end” of the city. We protested and were branded “NIMBY’s”…Not in my back yarders. Once we were branded, all attitutes about us turned to a negative. The city did the “act first, beg forgiveness after” trick, and the P/P office opened.

    The sad thing is, where do we put them? Jeni says not in her backyard…so if she is above the fray, then do they come to my backyard because I’m not worthy of protection?

    I say we go with the movie and make some state a penal colony. Not NY tho…someplace like…Nevada…you can buy what you want there anyway…

    Sadly, once they’re out of jail, there is no good solution for these predatory people.

  4. I don’t see what you’re so upset about. What did you expect to find in the newspaper? A rational, thought out, informational piece of literature. Ha!

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