Photo Credit: Eric Gross
AUSTIN, Texas — A Republican lawmaker in Texas has proposed a bill that would make sending unwanted sexually explicit photos to another person a criminal offense in the state.
House Bill 2789, sponsored by Rep. Morgan Meyer, R-Dallas, was recently heard by the House Committee on Criminal Jurisprudence, and is currently pending in committee.
The legislation states that “[a] person commits an offense if the person knowingly transmits by electronic means visual material that depicts any person engaging in sexual conduct or with the person’s intimate parts exposed.” Violations would be a Class C misdemeanor and punishable by up to $500 in fines.
“Sending a lewd photo to someone that has not requested it or someone you don’t know is no different than exposing yourself to a stranger in public or performing other lewd acts,” Meyer said in a statement. “This is becoming a bigger issue among our teenagers and young adults, and while it seems less egregious since done over text or email, we must establish that this is not acceptable by making it a punishable offense.”
The dating app Bumble is also behind the bill as Meyer reportedly communicated with the company in crafting the legislation.
“What is illegal in the real world must be illegal in the digital world, and this legislation is a first step in the right direction in adding that accountability,” founder Whitney Wolfe Herd said in a statement. “A considerable amount of our lifetime is spent online
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