Wanna Watch A Republican Legislator Scream About Anal Sex For A Full Minute?
This Monday, legislators in the Washington state House passed legislation meant to decriminalize teen sexting. Currently, the law charges teens with felony distribution of child pornography, a conviction that can and has put them on the sex offenders registry for the rest of their lives. According to Representative Noel Frame, 50 minors have been charged with distributing child pornography since this became the law in 2017.
Is it stupid for a teenager to send a dick pic? Sure it is! But it's not a thing that should land someone on the sex offenders registry for the rest of their lives. Putting anyone on it for something like this undermines the entire purpose and legitimacy of the registry, which is meant to protect people from offenders who pose an actual danger to them. There is an obvious difference between someone who is a rapist or a child molester and an idiot teenager who sends a picture of her boobs to her boyfriend. Being on the sex offenders registry limits where someone can work, where they can live, so if you're going to put someone on it, it really better be for a damn good reason.
Via The Stranger:
Frame's bill would prevent kids from being charged with a felony for possessing naked photos of themselves. Minors sharing naked photos, however, could be charged with a simple or gross misdemeanor if the person in the photo is between 13 and 17-years-old. Distributing images of kids 12 and under will still be a class B felony.
Frame argues that the bill is designed to educate kids, decriminalize possession so that they can come forward and report exploitation, and implement reasonable accountability measures for when they're sharing photos in a way that could potentially harm other kids. Existing laws around malicious distribution and harassment will still be in place, Frame says, so kids who share photos on a revenge-porn tear will still be subject to those statutes.
Seems fine enough, right? Well, not according to Republicans in the House, who urged legislators to support an amendment to the bill proposed by school resource officer and Pentecostal preacher (natch) Rep. Brad Klippert.
Klippert's amendment would have limited the decriminalization only to images of "unclothed breasts, unclothed genitals, or unclothed pubic area, or buttocks" shared between two teenagers, but charge those who possessed images of themselves or others engaged in "sexually explicit conduct" with a misdemeanor or a gross misdemeanor.
Klippert's amendment was voted down, because legislators felt that it would have been counterproductive and, according to Rep. Frame, "teenagers who have created or shared explicit images may be reluctant to seek adult help for fear of being prosecuted themselves." Klippert was not happy about it. In response, he got up on the floor and started screaming a list of all the kinds of sex he was grossed out by, that these teenagers could hypothetically send videos of themselves doing.
Rep. Brad Klippert's comments on HB 1742 youtu.be
And what a list it was!
"Actual or simulated sexual intercourse including genital to genital, oral to genital, anal genital, oral, anal, whether between persons of the same or opposite sex or between humans and animals. Penetration of the vagina or rectum by any object. Masturbation, sadomasochistic abuse!"
Bestiality, for the record, has been illegal in Washington state since 2006. Which ... better late than never.
Klippert then asked permission from the Speaker to define "sadism," which he failed to pronounce correctly.
"Sadism is defined as 'to derive pleasure, especially sexual gratification, from inflicting pain, suffering or humiliation on others." This is what this bill is talking about. Not images. Defecation or urination for the purpose of sexual stimulation of the viewer. And I could go on but I won't."
HUH. OK then! Sure seems like he's given this a lot of thought.
Despite Klippert's fear that this legislation would result in all the teenagers sending pics of themselves getting golden showers, raping farm animals, and generally reenacting Pasolini's 100 Days of Sodom, the bill passed without his amendment and will now be heard by the state Senate.
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Robyn Pennacchia is a brilliant, fabulously talented and visually stunning angel of a human being, who shrugged off what she is pretty sure would have been a Tony Award-winning career in musical theater in order to write about stuff on the internet. Follow her on Twitter at @RobynElyse