Saturday, May 24, 2008

Be a meanie, go to jail

Largely as a response to the horrible Megan Meier incident, the Missouri legislature recently passed a bill expanding the definition of criminal harassment to include the following:

[E]ngaging, without good cause, in any other act with the purpose to frighten, intimidate, or cause emotional distress to another person, cause such person to be frightened, intimidated, or emotionally distressed, and such person's response to the act is one of a person of average sensibilities considering the person's age.

If the perpetrator is 21 or older and the victim is 17 or younger, or if the perpetrator has committed this crime before, it's a felony that could result in four years' imprisonment.

The Governor hasn't signed the bill yet, but he's expected to. This law is ridiculously overbroad. Is there anyone, ever, who has not intentionally caused emotional distress to another person without good cause? I fear that Fuzzy alone could identify enough instances to get me imprisoned for life. (But she should not mention them in the comments section, because to do so would cause me emotional distress and could land her in jail too.)

1 comment:

Froggy said...

I've GOT to get my brothers to come to Missouri. After all, they shot me when I was 6 . . . that's got to be good for some jail time.