Do You Know Your Rights?
Everyone thinks they have rights: the right to free speech; choice of religion; vote in a general election, etc. These are some of the rights guaranteed to every American citizen, without limitation, by the framers of the United States Constitution. Do you know what this Bill of Rights allows you to have as an American? Do you also know that there are multiple laws codified by the federal government that completely sidestep your rights? Any right that we think we have can be removed by Congress as long as it’s sold properly. It has happened many times, most notably with the Patriot Act (2003) and again in 2006 with the signing of the Adam Walsh Act.
Some have challenged the laws in federal court only to be dismissed by a biased judiciary and incompetent legal representation. The AWA, like the Patriot Act, has been deemed a civil statute. It therefore does not have to abide by the rights and freedoms granted under the Constitution. By upholding the Adam Walsh Act, the US Supreme Court has solidified the federal government’s ability to undermine Constitutional protections.
This kind of devaluing, or “weakening”, of the citizenry has happened many times throughout the world’s history and has never worked out favorably for society – especially for the oppressed. Removing and violating the rights of citizens is the just first step towards something much more sinister.
These arguments may or may not have been used in the many court proceedings regarding the AWA. They are listed here as a reference for forced registrants to understand how violated they are in the US. Keep in mind that we are not lawyers and do not make any representation of having legal expertise. The following opinions are those that seem the most reasonable.
Amendment 5 – Rights of Persons
No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself; nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.
Punishment-after-punishment is a violation of both the double-jeopardy and due process protections of the 5th Amendment. This statute is not applied on a case-by-case basis as all other punishments are. Rather, it is cast as a blanket punishment for all offenders regardless of crime committed. If the charge is within the boundaries of what the AWA considers an offense, it will be applied. It doesn’t matter if there was violence, contact, or even a victim involved.
The civil commitment clause of the AWA (Jimmy Ryce Act) requires only a hearing in front of a judge. The burden of proof lay on the defendant to prove that they are in no way a danger to society. Losing this case can result in a potential lifetime imprisonment – without a trial or a crime committed.
Ex Post Facto
The Act also applies retroactively without due process. An individual convicted in 1955 of lewd conduct would find himself the recipient of a 25-year to lifetime term of registration punishment – over 50 years after the fact. This is also a major Constitutional and human rights violation against the creation of ex post facto laws.
Ex post facto most typically refers to a criminal statute that punishes actions retroactively, thereby criminalizing conduct that was legal when originally performed. Two clauses in the United States Constitution prohibit ex post facto laws:1
- Art 1, § 9
- This prohibits Congress from passing any laws which apply ex post facto.
- Art. 1 § 10.
- This prohibits the states from passing any laws which apply ex post facto.
The ex post facto occurs because, prior to passage, some folks did not have to register in their state. This law makes that a felony (the failure to register clause), thereby criminalizing a behavior (not registering) and creating a crime where there was none.
Amendment 8 – Further Guarantees in Criminal Cases
Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.
Excessive bail is almost always a guarantee in AWA arrests. It is not unheard of to receive a 6-figure cash bail (not bond) for simply failing to register – an imaginary crime (it’s a felony too) that only exists because the AWA exists!
Forcing citizens to register with the State and prohibiting their rights as free persons is both cruel and unusual punishment. It is cruel to destroy the life of the individual by restricting their ability to live freely among the populace. It is also a highly unusual punishment because no other restrictive legislation exists to be used against other persons.
Children forced onto the registry suffer far more psychological trauma than should exist in any developed nation.
Amendment 10 – Reserved Powers
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.
Before the creation of the AWA, every state had its own registry, if it felt the need to have one. These laws were also drafted within the guidelines of their respective constitutions. The AWA, a federal statute, is forced upon the States to be adopted, often in direct violation of their constitutions. Failing this, they lose their federal funding that they so desperately need to operate.
This law also gives the US the right to supersede the rights of the State’s citizen. The ability to acquire professional licenses, public housing, and freely travel is impeded by the AWA; thus violating the sovereignty of the States and preventing them from operating at will under the 10th Amendment.
This activity is known in legal circles as extortion (do it or else you get nothing), bribery (we will pay you extra to make your version of the act harsher), and racketeering (forces the registrant to pay ongoing costs for monitoring while threatening them with infinite incarceration potential). The federal government is literally funding a racket in direct violation of its own RICO Act. That’s the same law used to take down organized crime. Felonious behavior, if committed by an individual or business organization, in any state in the Union.
Amendment 13 – Slavery and Involuntary Servitude
Section 1. Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.
While not chattel slavery, the restrictive nature of the AWA forces its victims to regularly register with the State (involuntarily) and denies them their actual freedom (i.e. residency and employment restrictions) after release from incarceration. This form of indentured servitude is outlawed via this Amendment, except as part of punishment. The AWA has been classified by the courts, albeit incorrectly, as a civil statute instead of the punishment it is in order to avoid being declared wholly unconstitutional. Therefore, since it’s not “punishment”, this Amendment, ironically, applies and the AWA is unconstitutional. 🙄
Amendment 15 – Right of Citizens to Vote
Section. 1. The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude.
While the AWA doesn’t explicitly forbid the right to vote by anyone under its control, some states use it as a way to disenfranchise people. Florida, for example, permanently violates the 15th Amendment right of anyone convicted of an AWA (sexual) offense or murder. Yes: or murder. Trying to force the narrative that all sex crimes, including non-violent, low-risk offenses (i.e. viewing lolicon on the internet, urinating in public, etc.), are somehow within the same scope of severity as homicide is one of the many disastrous side effects of dehumanizing legislation like the AWA.
Someone convicted of a high crime could, temporarily, lose some of their rights as part of a legitimate punishment. This is a perfectly reasonable position so long as regardless of the crime committed, including murder, any citizen who completes his adjudicated sentence should have his or her natural-born civil rights, including the right to vote, restored completely.