Unintended Consequences of the Law

unintended consequences

Unintended Consequences of the Law

Purpose of the Law

Laws are passed to protect the vulnerable, maintain order, and establish rights, and to achieve “right” results.  Occasionally, however, unexpected “wrong” things happen.

That does not mean we should ever stop passing laws.  Especially to protect children.

Incidentally, I put “right” in quotes because of 2 reasons.

One, I am aware that some subscribe to postmodernism (the belief that there is no “truth” or “right” or wrong”).  Postmodernists apparently don’t believe in truth or law.

Two, there is a way that appears right to us, but in the end leads to destruction.

We’re humans.

But I digress.

Unintended consequences may happen, but it should NOT prevent us from passing good laws to protect children!

No matter our intentions, rules may yield the opposite result.  This is what is known as “unintended consequences” of the law.

For example, some parents may forbid “junk food” at home to protect children from obesity, cavities, and addiction.  Many children who are not exposed to junk food will grow up shunning it.  Like me.

My Taiwanese parents taught me how to “eat bitterness”.   (I hated it growing up!  How I wish I could just stuff my face with pizza and twinkies like my friends!)  Now that I am grown,  I am so thankful they didn’t expose me to obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. Junk food is an addiction, and I’ve seen too many people battle it.

So, most children raised with healthy eating habits will continue to eat healthy after they leave their parents’ stewardship.

However, some children will not.  Rather, knowing or fearing shame for succumbing to foods they deem “bad”, they may hide binge eating, or develop an eating disorder.

Such is the unintended consequence of forbidding junk food in the house.  This, however, doesn’t mean you must never forbid junk food.

Other Examples

No Fault Divorce is the best example of unintended consequences of the law.   You may think, “no fault divorce” was passed to make encourage divorce.  Actually, it wasn’t.  That was merely an unintended consequence.

No fault divorce was actually passed because during the “fault” regime, couples had to PROVE abuse, adultery, or abandonment in order to get a divorce.  You may think, for the most part, this is a good thing!  This would prevent a person from staying in a marriage with an abusive spouse, or someone who was unfaithful to them.  However, for the master manipulators who have no excuse to want out, the only way they could divorce is to falsely accuse the other person of abuse, adultery or abandonment.   There is a lot of bad behavior in family court.

Read more about common misconceptions about no fault divorce.

Fault Divorce and False Accusations

In California around 1950, 70% of San Francisco divorces filed by wives cited “cruelty” by husband in order to get a divorce. This behavior was described by Justice Stanley Mosk (for whom our famous downtown Los Angeles court is named after) in his dissenting opinion in Marriage of McKim.

“Every day, in every superior court in the state, the same melancholy charade was played: the “innocent” spouse, generally the wife, would take the stand and, to the accompanying cacophony of sobbing and nose-blowing, testify under the deft guidance of an attorney to the spousal conduct that she deemed “cruel.”

Fault to No Fault Divorce

In 1961, the National Association of Women Lawyers advocated for no fault divorce because they felt the fault divorce laws were too “impractical and unsound.”

Proponents of the Uniform Divorce and Marriage Act (UDMA) said:

“The purpose of our Bill is not to make divorce easier or more difficult,” Fenberg wrote in the group’s proposal for a Uniform Divorce Bill. “It is simply to substitute truth for deception, common sense for technicalities, and to give the Courts real opportunity to prevent marriage failures by means of conciliation and treatment, rather than to punish failures in marriages.”

SB 1414 to Protect Minors from Child Trafficking

Last year, CA Senate Democrats blocked SB 14, a bill that would punish the selling of children for sex as as a felony.

Now, California Senate Democrats rejected SB 1414 (a bill that would punish buying children for sex as a felony), as proposed by Senator Shannon Grove.

Here is the original language of SB 1414:

SB 1414 Proposed by Shannon Grove
SB 1414 Proposed by Shannon Grove

Under existing law, a person who solicits, or who agrees to engage in, or who engages in, any act of prostitution with the intent to receive compensation, money, or anything of value from another person is guilty of disorderly conduct, a misdemeanor.

Under existing law, if the person solicited was a minor, and the person who solicited the minor knew or reasonably should have known that the person solicited was a minor, the offense is punishable by imprisonment in the county jail for a mandatory minimum of 2 days and not to exceed one year, by a fine not to exceed $10,000 or by both such fine and imprisonment.

This bill would instead, if the person solicited was a minor, regardless of whether or not the person knew or reasonably should have known that the person solicited was a minor, make the offense punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for 2, 3, or 4 years, and a fine not to exceed $25,000.
By changing the elements and increasing the punishment of a crime, this bill would impose a state-mandated local program.

SB 1414 and “Unintended Consequences”

Senate Democrats rejected the bill as written, arguing it was “overbroad” and would pose “unintended consequences”, so rather than protect all children, they excluded protection for children 16 and up.

I guess their rationale is that silly teenagers may not have known buying children for sex is punishable and it would be too harsh on them.  Or maybe, traffickers should be able to sell 16 year olds, because maybe, just maybe, punishing them would be too harsh for 16 year olds that choose to be trafficked?

“Unintended consequences” has become the battle cry of predators to avoid passing laws punishing atrocities against children.  Don’t fall for it.

Just Sick!

Assembly Republican Leader James Gallagher (Yuba City) blasted the modified bill.

“This is just sick. There is no possible justification for purchasing a child for sex. Anyone who does it should go to prison for a long time. Democrats on the Public Safety Committee basically said it’s no big deal to participate in the trafficking of a 16 year old. Just sick,” said Gallagher in a social media post.

Protect Children

We should protect children at all costs, especially vulnerable children. 

What About Unintended Consequences of Title IX Amended?

The unintended consequences of Title IX is  bye, bye women’s rights.  Does anyone care??

The law is good if used properly.

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