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Nats “crime of conversation and meeting” fascist

National’s “crime of conversation and meeting” a fascist kneejerk reaction

“Unenforceable, unnecessary and a wanton attack on freedom of speech requiring widespread fascist powers of surveillance” is how Libertarianz Spokesman Scott Wilson described National Justice Spokesperson Richard Worth’s suggestion that there be so called “grooming laws” to ban certain types of conversations and to automatically criminalise adults meeting those under 16 unless proven otherwise.

“Few things could be more fascist than making a conversation illegal, and to make any adult arranging to meet any person under 16 automatically suspect of sexual intent, other than the surveillance apparatus necessary to listen in on any conversation that anyone who claims to be under 16 is having with anyone who claims to be over 16 online or on the phone. Will nobody under 16 be able to talk online or over the phone without some government goon listening in to see if they are being seduced?”

“The National Party wants to treat all adults who have any sort of relationship with young people as sexual abusers, unless otherwise proven, but is not confronting the real issue which is parental negligence in keeping their kids safe”

“Worth admits that he has no evidence about this apparent problem, which probably reflects the fact that most internet chatrooms for teenagers are heavily monitored by the owners of those sites, such as yahoo, excite, msn and xtra, to keep an eye on such behaviour. By contras whereas the adult chat rooms where there is a greater danger exists typically require a person to declare they are 18 years or over” Wilson explained.

“If parents want their children to be safe online they have to teach them to not give out personal details and to go to sites which actively monitor the content of chat. Teenagers clearly face far greater dangers roaming the streets of our major cities at night, or going to parties which are uncontrolled. For example, It is clear that young girls face a far bigger risk getting raped at teenage parties when drunk than they do sitting on a computer typing a conversation to anyone, but controlling such parties means parental supervision, which far too few parents can be bothered doing nowadays”

Wilson outlined a list of situations which the National Party appears to want to criminalise, unless proven otherwise:

- Young people seeking advice on contraception, sexually transmitted diseases or safe sex practices. Does an adult providing any sexual advice automatically get criminalised? Or does the National Party believe young people are not sexual beings until they are 16? - Young people who lie about their age in order to be more grownup and chat in adult chatrooms. There have been cases of underage people lying about their age online to meet guys older than them. Why should the adult be criminalised when they have been effectively defrauded by a precocious teen? - Adult relatives or family friends who phone or email their underage sons, daughters, nieces, nephews or family friends in order to meet them to go to the movies. Are they automatically presumed to have criminal sexual intent?? Could parents in a situation of estranged divorce use this law to one of them arrested for simply meeting their daughter? - Older teenagers flirting with those on the wrong side of the age of consent. Could a 17 year old boy arranging to meet a 15yo girl online or by phone for a date be criminalised?

“Libertarianz would reject all such laws which presume adult contact with young people is nefarious, and which require the Police to intercept and monitor vast numbers of communications in order to Nanny everyone under 16. Libertarianz call instead for parents to be parents, control their children’s online and phone activities, avoid letting their kids go out at night unsupervised and teach them not to go meeting people online without having a responsible adult present” Wilson concluded.

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