Discussion: Passage of Megan’s Law

Discussion: Passage of Megan’s Law

Discussion: Passage of Megan’s Law


Crime Law and Policy

Factors that led to the passage of Megan’s Law: Following their son’s murder, Judy and Dennis Shepard created The Matthew Shepard Foundation and became activists on behalf of ending antigay violence. Judy took up the mission with passion, making speeches, meeting with politicians and celebrities, and writing a book to tell her son’s story. Her efforts have been credited with helping to bring about the new legislation (Stone, 2009).

The struggle to pass the Matthew Shepard Act was not easy, and took 11 years. There were many opponents to the legislation during this time. Some suggested that efforts toward passage of this law could have been better spent on passing antidiscrimination laws (Arana, 2009). Other critics argued that the new law would punish people for their thoughts, not their deeds. Still others felt the law infringed on the freedom of speech. Despite the opposition, the law eventually passed. The new law extended the definition of hate crimes to include “gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or disability” (Hulse, 2009). In 2011, the first case was prosecuted under the Matthew Shepard Act in South Carolina (Edwards, 2011).

Judy Shepard’s perseverance and the efforts of other gay rights advocates led directly to the passage of the Matthew Shepard Act. Judy was able to influence changes in the legal system and participate in a social movement that has a positive impact on society.

For this Discussion, select one of the laws or policies that were inspired by a single case using the Interactive Community (Megan’s Law, Amber Alert, Adam Walsh Child Protection Safety Act, and MADD National Federal Drinking Age Act). Do not select the Matthew Shepard case. Examine the factors that led to passage of the law or policy and consider its long term impact on society.

Post by Day 1 a description of the law or policy you selected. Then describe the case that inspired the law or policy and explain how. Finally, explain how the law or policy has contributed to positive social change.

One and a half page with at least two reference….

It is important that you cover all the topics identified in the assignment. Covering the topic does not mean mentioning the topic BUT presenting an explanation from the readings.

To get maximum points you need to follow the requirements listed for this assignments 1) look at the page limits 2) review and follow APA rules 3) create SUBHEADINGS to identify the key sections you are presenting and 4) Free from typographical and sentence construction errors.


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The assignments are to be done in Microsoft Word with Times New Roman 12- point font. Each assignment should use the modified APA 6th edition format. The assignment templates are set up in this modified format. The reference page should be in the APA format for every reference. The word requirement for the assignments are specifically stated in the guidelines of the assignment. The word count is from the first word of the introductory paragraph to the last word of the conclusion paragraph. FYI.


1- There should be a cited reference for each section of a paper as there are conclusion statements in each section (to meet the grading criteria) so the conclusion should be supported by a reference as the assignments are evidence-based research, clinical papers.

2- Word Count- The word count is done from the first word of the introductory paragraph to the last word of the conclusion. The word count must be within the minimum and maximum word limit stated in the assignment instructions. A 10% – point reduction will be made in the total points for the assignment.

Week 1 and 5 assignments should have SIX studies. Week 5 assignment is a compilation of sections from the week 1, 2 & 3 assignments.

Weeks 2 and 3 need to have at least THREE studies in the form of research studies. Please make sure that you look at the instructions for the assignment as well as the grading rubric. I have also provided templates for ALL assignments. It is in your best interest to use these as it will guide you so that you do not make common formatting errors.


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