HB 139 (Wireless Internet Access Requirements, Chief Sponsor: Bradley M. Daw)

Steve smorrey at gmail.com
Thu Jan 24 12:05:55 MST 2008

On Jan 24, 2008 11:00 AM, Bradley Daw <bdaw at utah.gov> wrote:
> To: Steven
> From: Representative Brad Daw (District 60)
> Re: HB 139
> First of all, I would like to thank you for your interest and concern in
> my sponsored bill, "Wireless Internet Access Requirements."  This bill
> originated out of a personal responsibility that I feel to protect our
> children and our families from the dangers of the internet.  Internet
> pornography poses a great threat to our children and this bill is
> directed to help to keep them safe when they are outside of the home.
> The other aspect of protection that this bill offers our families is
> protection against pedophiles.  Those members of society do not deserve
> free wireless internet service and should not be allowed to easily and
> anonymously access it in public hotspots.
> However, I am concerned with many of the critiques of this bill.  For
> this reason, I would like to set up a time when we can meet together
> with a member of the Attorney General's staff and discuss alternatives
> that would make this bill more acceptable for the general public while
> still fulfilling some of the goals I have discussed previously.  Please
> let me know if there is a time next week when we can set an appointment
> and discuss the matter further.
> I will be circulating a formal email regarding this bill and answering
> many questions and objections about it.  In the mean time, I look
> forward to hearing from you.  Thank you for your time and your concern.

Your reason for sponsoring this bill is to "protect the children"
Ok, I can understand that you have a desire to protect your children
from the dangers of the internet.
However this is not the way to do it.

Content filtering is always a bad idea in general, most kids are smart
enough to bypass it and it tends to get in the way of legitimate use,
such as a medical student, or someone studying psychology or any
number of thousands of legitimate uses of the internet.

As far as I can tell, your bill doesn't specifically require that and
I commend you for that much,  however "proving adult hood", is also
not going to prevent anything either.  The bill is unenforceable, and
what do you do if the child has presented a "fake id",  or handed the
"nice man at the counter" mommy and daddy's credit card, or even has a
credit card of their very own as I stated previously.

The best way to protect children from the "dangers of pornography and
the internet", is to educate parents and instil values in the
children.  You cannot legislate that. It starts from within the
family.  It is the job of the family and to a lesser extent the church
to teach and instil values.

If your child is browsing pornography on the internet, meeting up with
paedophiles and etc, that means that YOU as a parent are being
neglectful of your child.  You have failed your child, plain and
simple.  We already have laws to deal with parental neglect.  I fail
to see how letting your child browse porn on the internet is any
different than leaving your Playboys laying around the house

If you want to stop this, then sit down with your child and have a
frank discussion about it.  It's your job as a parent to do this, but
it is not your job as a legislator to create a nanny state in the
interests of protecting the children, and in the process
inconveniencing everyone else, by creating a crime out of allowing
simple public access of a shared community resource.  One which was
originally funded by taxpayer dollars for the purposes of advancing
technology and the state of research.

Remember, your job is to protect YOUR children from the dangers of the
internet.  My job is to protect MY children from the dangers of the
internet.  I may even disagree with you on what is and is not
dangerous, for instance someone may let their child climb a tree,
another may not, out of fear the child will fall and harm themselves.
Therefore it is not YOUR job to protect MY children.

As far as pedophiles not deserving to have free wireless internet
access, this law does nothing to prevent that at all.
And to be frank there really is nothing you can do except punish a
person for creating / distributing and possessing such materials, I'm
relatively certain we have a law like that in place already.
You could extend the penalty for being a pedophile to require no
internet access at all.  But how do you let them re-integrate into
society.  If you don't want them re-integrating then why let them out
at all?  Either the criminal has paid their dues, to society, or they
have not.  You cannot pass a law that punishes someone for something
that they have not yet done, nor attempted to do.  If you think the
current punishment for being a pedophile is too lax, then work on a
bill to strengthen our penalties against it.  I would recommend you
lengthen sentences and require regular contact with a clinical
psychiatrist at their own expense for the remainder of their life, or
until the psychiatrist can say with certainty that the offender will
not re-offend and is willing to be held criminally liable if his
assertion is incorrect.  Then again I would recommend that for any

Justice must always be "ex post facto", and the justice system works
best when laws are passed that recognize this fact.
Laws designed to "prevent" crime, are never successful and place an
undue burden upon society.
As soon as we start to pass laws that infringe upon the greater good
of society in the interests of protecting society from a few
individuals, we are trading freedom for security and making a whole
new set of criminals out of otherwise ordinary citizens.
Usually while doing nothing to actually protect us from the "bad guys".

The truth plain and simple, is that this law makes a criminal out of
any business owner who decides to leave an open WiFi point for the
convenience of his/her customers and/or employees and/or society at

Since you are a resident of Orem, I urge you to go to
http://www.plug.org/ the Provo Linux users group (About half of us are
actually in Orem), and sign up for the mailing list there.  A sizeable
portion of your technically literate and concerned constituents are
members there and engage in lively debate on political topics all the
time.  You could receive feedback in advance from hundreds of people,
whom the laws you are proposing would effect, before you propose
legislation that boils down to nonsense and you end up losing more
I can promise that you will be received well, and this simple act
would enhance your credibility with your technically literate


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