The Dobbs Wire: Events of Interest in NYC , Austin, Washington, DC and on the internet!

The Dobbs Wire:  Events of Interest in NYC, Austin, Washington, DC and webstreamed on the internet!


America Is Hard to See

Type:                Live theatrical production

Location:           New York City (SoHo)

Date:                Jan. 20-Feb. 24  8:30PM

Featuring:          Ken Barnett, John Carlin, Joyce Cohen, Amy Gaither Hayes, David Spadora, Valerie Gareth Tidball     

Blurb:                During the late fall of 2015, members of Life Jacket Theatre Company travelled to southern Florida to interview the residents of Miracle Village, a rural community for sex offenders buried deep in sugarcane fields.  The team has transformed its research into a moving and unflinching play about darkness, uncertainty, and the painful process of healing in small-town AmericaThis play uses a fusion of personal interviews and found text crafted by Travis Russ, award-winning playwright and director, as well as traditional Methodist hymns and original songs composed and arranged by Priscilla Holbrook, from the band Susan Jane.  Life Jacket Theatre Company’s recent production of Gorey:  The Secret Lives Of Edward Gorey, was a Critics’ Pick by the New York Times and Time Out New York, was nominated for a 2017 Drama Desk Award, seven 2016 New York Innovative Theatre Awards, and two 2017 Henry Hewes Design Awards (granted by the American Theatre Wing).

Sponsor:           Life Jacket Theater Co. @ HERE Arts Center

Cost:                $35-$45. Use discount code “2FOR1” to get two tickets for the price of one, good for performances Jan. 30-Feb. 4 only. 





You May Be a Sex Offender if…

Who gets on the list? Could you, or someone you love, wind up on the list?

Type:                Live presentation with simultaneous webstream

Location:           Washington, DC

Date:                Feb. 8  12:00PM-1:30PM

Featuring:          Lenore Skenazy, author, columnist, and founder of Free-Range Kids; with comments by Dara Lind, senior reporter for Vox; moderated by Walter Olson, Cato Institute.

Blurb:                In 1994, responding to a terrible murder, Congress passed a law requiring all 50 states to set up sex offense registries. Now many states closely control where and with whom persons on the registries may live, while public maps showing offenders’ places of residence lead to social shunning and occasional harassment. They also scare parents from letting their children play outside.  But does the registry make kids any safer? Lenore Skenazy, the New York newspaper columnist famous for letting her 9-year-old son ride the subway alone and founding the “anti-helicopter parenting” movement, has found that offender maps have helped shape public perceptions of a society rife with child-snatching. That led her to other questions: Who gets on the list? Could you, or someone you love, wind up on the list? How about getting off it? Lenore Skenazy has spoken around the world on the costs of irrational fears of risk to young people and is the president of the new nonprofit dedicated to overthrowing overprotection, Let Grow. Commenting on her remarks will be Vox senior reporter Dara Lind, who has written on how the registry system fits into the wider scheme of criminal justice sanctions and how it may affect recidivism.

Sponsor:           Cato Institute

Cost:                Free

Webstream:       details at link below  





Emily Horowitz vs. Marci Hamilton                     

Debate topic:  Whether “all the laws requiring those convicted of sex offenses to put their names in a registry should be abolished.”

Type:                Live debate

Location:           New York City (NoHo)

Date:                Feb. 12, 2018  6:30PM-8:30PM

Sponsor:           The Soho Forum

Featuring:          Emily Horowitz, Marci Hamilton.  Moderated by Gene Epstein.

Blurb:                Debate of the following resolution, “All the laws requiring those convicted of sex offenses to put their names in a registry should be abolished.”

                        In favor of the resolution is Emily Horowitz, professor and chair of the sociology and criminal justice department at St. Francis College in Brooklyn, New York, where she founded a program that helps the formerly incarcerated complete college. She serves as a board member for the National Center for Reason and Justice, a national organization that advocates in criminal cases involving those falsely accused and wrongfully convicted of crimes against children, and the Alliance for the Constitutional Reform of Sex Offense Laws, an organization that educates and litigates laws that undermine the civil rights of those convicted of sex offenses and their families. Horowitz is the author of Protecting Our Kids?: How Sex Offender Laws Are Failing Us (2015) and co-editor of Caught in the Web of the Criminal Justice System: Autism, Developmental Disabilities, and Sex Offenses (2017). She has a PhD in sociology from Yale University.

                        Opposed to the resolution is Marci A. Hamilton, Fox Professor of Practice and Fox Family Pavilion Resident Senior Fellow in the Program for Research on Religion in the Fox Leadership Program at the University of Pennsylvania. She is also the founder, CEO, and Academic Director of CHILD USA, which is dedicated to interdisciplinary, evidence-based research to prevent child abuse and neglect. The author of God vs. the Gavel: The Perils of Extreme Religious Liberty  which was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize, Hamilton is also a columnist for Verdict on Her book, Justice Denied: What America Must Do to Protect Its Children advocates the elimination of child sex abuse statutes of limitations. She holds a JD from the University of Pennsylvania School of Law, where she served as Editor-in-Chief of the University of Pennsylvania Law Review.

Cost:                $10-$18






Kids in Cuffs:  The Trouble with Teen Sexting Laws

Juveniles can actually go to jail for sending or receiving a sext

Type:                Live panel discussion

Location:           Austin, TX

Date:                March 9, 2018  3:30pm-4:30pm

Featuring:          Emily Horowitz is a sociologist and the author of Protecting Our Kids?: How Sex Offender Laws Are Failing Us (2015).  Amy Lawrence works at two care centers: a home for elderly persons, and a safe place for victims of domestic abuse. Emily Yoffe is a contributing editor to The Atlantic, focusing on civil liberties, and has written extensively about campus sexual assault. Robby Soave is an associate editor at and writes about college news, education policy, criminal justice reform, and television.

Blurb:  It’s one of the most common parenting nightmares of the 21st century: Finding out your teen swapped inappropriate text messages with a classmate. Unfortunately, outdated laws often make reality even worse–juveniles can actually go to jail for sending or receiving a sext, even though such behavior is ubiquitous among young people. The purpose of this panel is to inform the public about an aspect of criminal justice in desperate need of reform: the law as it relates to teenagers and technology.

Sponsor:           SXSW (South By Southwest) Festival

Cost:                Festival registration required



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