Orange County already has established its support for shaming people convicted of soliciting sex. According to the OC Register, the Orange County District Attorney’s Office has already enacted a policy that posts the names on-line of people convicted of soliciting sex. Now the city of Anaheim is considering enacting a similar policy. This is significant because the city is the only one in Orange County that prosecutes its own misdemeanors. If the city follows the county in this sex crimes shaming policy, the entire county will be in lock-step.
The OC Register, and the vast majority of media outlets in the nation, do not typically publish the names of people convicted of misdemeanors including misdemeanor DUI, solicitation and prostitution. But the supporters of the on-line publication of convicts' names may argue that the public shame will be more effective at combating the crime than an arrest and conviction may be. The photos of the convicts may also be posted along with their names.
Perhaps the crime of prostitution does warrant an unusual response such as "sex crimes shaming." Perhaps combating this crime requires extraordinary effort. However, this recent development may be a troubling sign for constitutional advocates concerned about the erosion of guaranteed rights and the long-term prospects of redemption.