The bill in question, called HB 379, proposed by the GOP state Representative Steve Hurst, mandates that child sex offenders whose crimes involve anyone under thirteen undergo chemical castration before they can be released from prison.
Some states around the U.S. have already implemented chemical castration bills. However, how frequently the procedure is performed is not known. Chemical castration, unlike its surgical counterpart (which requires cutting of the genitals), involves the use of drugs to quell sexual urges.
Hurst stated that since these predators have scarred a child they violated for life, the punishment should fit the crime.
Not only is the procedure mandatory, but the perpetrators are required to pay for the castration themselves. Refusing the procedure would be considered as a violation of parole.
Hurst claimed that the goal of this bill was to act as a deterrent for sexual offenders and reduce the number of sexual crimes against children.
When confronted with the inhumaneness of the proposed bill, Hurst claimed that what sex offenders do to children is significantly worse.
Attorney Raymond Johnson indicated that child molestation is already a grave offense, with severe sentences and strict probation if granted parole.
Johnson also stated that this bill would be challenged under the Eighth Amendment, claiming the punishment was inhumane and extreme, especially for those who have served their sentence.
The bill awaits Gov. Kay Ivey’s approval.