Monday, October 31, 2016

Read it, Loved it, Recommending it! Refining Child Pornography Law: Crime, Language, and Social Consequences (Law, Meaning, and Violence) by Carissa Byrne Hessick

Over the last 8 years of advocacy I have always made a point to read current books, studies and reports related to this platform. I believe as a volunteer advocate who claims to be for data-driven reform, I better know the data even if I might not agree with it or if it may not support my efforts. Funny thing is almost every piece I’ve read over the last 8 years backs up my efforts here in Virginia. 

I especially like books that are point and counterpoint because I need to know what the opposition is saying, what they believe and where they are getting their information from, credible or not. 

If we only listen to one-side of an argument then we are not only misinformed but we risk doing more harm than good. One-sided legislation leads to knee-jerk laws, one-size-fits all sentencing and feel-good campaign slogans. It’s time for the collateral damage from this kind of willful ignorance to end, we deserve better. 

Today I have read my 54th book and I’m so impressed by it I want to recommend it to every Legislator in Virginia as well as too all supporters of my advocacy. 

It is………. 

Part I. Defining Child Pornography Crimes 

  1. Constitutional Issues

  1. The Context and Content of New York v. Ferber
        James Weinstein

  1. Setting Definitional Limits for the Child Pornography Exception
        Carissa Byrne Hessick

  1. Consequences of the Legal Definition 

  1. The “Dost Test” in Child Pornography Law: “Trial by Rorschach Test”
        Amy Adler

  1. The  Language of Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation
        Mary Graw Leary

Part II. Refining Child Pornography Law 

  1. The Special Case of Possession 

  1. Questioning the Modern Criminal Justice Focus
        Carissa Byrne Hessick

  1. The Dignitary Harm of Child Pornography- From Producers to Possessors
        Audrey Rogers

  1. Not Just Kiddie Porn”: The Significant Harms from Child Pornography Possession
        Paul G. Cassell, James R. Marsh and Jeremy M. Christiansen

  1. Child Pornography Definitions at Work 

  1. Challenges in Investigations and Prosecutions of Child Pornography Crimes
        Wendy Walsh, Melissa Wells and Janis Wolak

  1. A Critical Evaluation of the Federal Sentencing Guidelines for Child Pornography Offenses
        Troy Stabenow

  1. Political and Empirical Controversies Threaten the Federal Child Pornography Guidelines
        Melissa Hamilton


Before one more Child Pornography law is proposed, tweaked or even considered in Virginia, every Legislator, the Governor and the AG should read this book. 

I have another book sitting on my end table which I’ll start in the next few days as well as one expected to arrive in December and another due March 2017 so more recommendations could be around the corner. 

Happy reading everyone!

Mary Devoy