KELLY'S COURT DEBATE: Court Strikes Down Indiana's Social Media Ban for Sex Offenders
How can registered sex offenders be prevented from talking to children on social networks? That was the question debated this afternoon on Kelly's Court.
Indiana passed a law in 2008 banning most registered sex offenders from using social networking sites, like Facebook.
But on Wednesday, a federal appeals court in Chicago ruled the law unconstitutional, saying it is too broad and "prohibits substantial protected speech." The three judges said the law can be rewritten more specifically.
The ACLU of Indiana had challenged the law, arguing
it's so broad that it could even apply to someone who was convicted 40 years ago and now wants to go on Twitter.
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Megyn Kelly debated the issues surrounding the law with defense attorney Arthur Aidala and Fox News legal analyst Mercedes Colwin, pointing out that social networking sites are a popular place for sexual predators to contact minors.
Colwin strongly disagreed with the decision, saying she believes the law is reasonably written.
"There are statistics that say that one out of every 10 children get these types of solicitations a day. That's incredible. And there are other statistics that say there's five million sexual predators that are on the internet every day. ... And by the way Mr. John Doe, that wants access, you have plenty of access on the internet. You can send emails, you can post on message boards, you can be on LinkedIn," she said.
Aidala said nobody disagrees with Colwin's arguments, but pointed out that the appeals court is saying that the law cannot "cast this big wide net." He said lawmakers need to account for the fact that there are different levels of sex offenders, "just like there are different levels of assault."
Kelly seemed skeptical of Aidala's point, saying either way, "it's still a child sex offense." In closing, Kelly said she doesn't like the court's ruling, but "the First Amendment is very broad and very protective."
Watch the debate below, and tell us what you think about the ruling.
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