This chapter presents some concluding thoughts. Over the past two decades or so, federal, state, and local governments have waged a so-called “war on sex offenders.” Legislators and policymakers have developed a variety of new or recycled laws aimed at reducing the threat these offenders pose to the public. While these legal initiatives have enjoyed great popular and political support, there is little evidence that any of them have had a significant effect, if any effect, in reducing sex crimes. It is argued that America needs sex offender laws and policies that are evidence-based and cost-effective, that respect the nation's historic and fundamental commitment to civil liberties, and that do not threaten to make a mockery of psychology, psychiatry, and other mental health professions.
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