It's extremely complicated, as most issue are. I just finished an article in the New Yorker of 1/14/13 about the civil commitment of a sexual offender, and offenders in general.
No, I don't want the guy around. Yes, the US has and may commit/jail individuals past the serving of their sentences for what crimes they may commit.
Just food for thought, not flaming OR TAKING SIDES. Look into both sides and learn.
This is an issue of philosophy and justice; an issue within the daily life of our and any community. I view it as physics (community and real life) and metaphysics (does the US want to commit people for what they may do.) I'm loathe to say "physics" VERSUS "metaphysics" and I'm sorry I can't come up with a better analogy.
Reminds me of the torture/waterboarding debate. It is a matter more of principal, in my view, than detail.
But then I say: No, I don't want this person released, anywhere, of course. But I believe in American freedoms and ideals.... Round and round and round.
No knee jerk reaction here; simply puzzlement and head-banging. Nor will I debate the issue. I continue to debate it in my own mind.
Topics for research, if you have time and interest:
civil commitment sexual offenders
US v Comstock Supreme Court
Adam Walsh Child Protection Safety Act
American Psychiatric Association + civil commitment sexual offenders
forensic psychology + pedophilia, child pornography, sexual offender
Butner Federal Correctional Institute
National Sentencing Resource Project