Prop. 35 has right idea, wrong approach

Sex trafficking should not be taken lightly, and people who are guilty of doing it should be punished. Proposition 35 seeks to expand the state’s definition of sex trafficking and the punishments for it. But the measure goes too far.

Under the proposition, people who are only even peripherally connected to sex traffickers could be found guilty and forced to register as a sex offender in California. And local law enforcement agencies would be required to keep track of the online identities of every sex offender in the state, a huge new undertaking and an unreasonable burden to impose upon them.

And while Prop. 35 seeks to change state law, the fact is that most sex-trafficking cases are actually tried on the federal level because they involve several jurisdictions.

Our state’s laws against sex trafficking could be strengthened, but this proposition is not the way to do it. We urge a no vote with an eye toward the future, when stricter enforcement can be worked out through a legislative process that will allow full vetting of the proposed remedy.

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