Several state lawmakers are having a hard time explaining themselves after passing an asinine law that made every parent a sex offender just for completing the simple and common task of changing their baby’s diaper. While many laws are passed with the best intentions in mind, the practicality of this bill wasn’t well thought out, and it’s leaving many parents completely distressed and demanding answers.
The specific law in question was passed in Arizona, and it criminalizes ANY contact between an adult and a child’s genitals, meaning that if you’ve ever given your child a bath, changed their diaper, or helped them wipe after using the bathroom, you have now committed a felony sexual crime. Yes, really.
What’s even more bizarre is that rather than rewriting the law so parents aren’t committing sex crimes for the simple act of parenting, the Arizona State court then doubled down on the insanity, backing the law, insisting that “prosecutors are unlikely to charge parents engaged in innocent conduct.” They then ruled that defendants would be required to prove their “lack of sexual intent,” throwing the whole Constitutional right thing of “innocent until proven guilty” completely out the window.
This is a damned if you, damned if you don’t law. If you do, you can be convicted of a sex crime (and the assumption that you did – because you kind of have to! – can be used against you). If you don’t, you can be charged with neglect. So, wtf?