Now, I don't mean legalizing it for underage runaways, girls trafficked from afar, or street walkers working to support a pimp and/or drug habit. I'm only talking about girls working for themselves or in a bordello where working is by choice. (I say "girls" but I recognize a small part of the business is done by males as well.)
I've already mentioned bordello girls, but that's not the end of the story. I'm also talking about such independents as escorts and the sensual masseuses who provide the famous "happy ending," once again recognizing that there are a few males engaging in such work as well.
Obviously there is a need or market niche. Why not let it be filled while at the same time redoubling our efforts to stamp out the sexual slavery?
There is no way to make prostitution safe any more than we can make ordinary dating safe. We can increase the safety for some, but there's no way to make it absolutely safe for everyone. For example, girls working the streets are engaging in risky behavior, but so is the girl who's doing wilderness skiing. Actually, I think one of the riskiest things a girl can do is a first date with a guy she doesn't really know yet.
It should be legalized and the legislation should concern itself mainly with ensuring they are included in the tax bracket and they are protected from exploitation by pimps and their clients.
What an interesting topic. I dated a woman who had worked her way up through the sex industry in Australia to own three of the largest legitimate brothels there. Legislation, permits, inspectors and taxation were effective in the oversight of the three Houses. In today's modern world where women have equal rights in respect of voting and employment opportunities, and reality is steadily approaching this envisioned emancipation, it does seem blinkered of a government to feel it should have a say in what people do with their genitalia; every monetary transaction should attract taxation, not moral justification.
It is easy to argue for legalising prostitution, and there is even a road map in Australia of what success should look like as a destination and how to get there. It is harder to bring objections forward that are not steeped in moral judgement, religious ideology or that focus on a minority of those who would abuse the system in some way. There will always be abusers of any system where one is in place, whether it is in respect of personal or business regulation - we know this, it is part of the human nature to figure out alternatives.
Does taxation make the government into a super-pimp? Probably, but why does that matter any more than any other form of taxation based on labour? Why is it OK to tax people who use other body parts (fruit pickers, etc) but not those who utilise their genitals?
There would appear to be a clear and present argument that the governments should remove prohibitive legislation and replace it with structured organisation that has a very real chance of dramatically reducing the risks existing in the current climate of secrecy.
The big question is whether any government will have the courage to brave proposing such a change, which would almost be guaranteed to provoke outrage in those who feel they must interfere in other peoples lives in order to validate their own existences. After all, the status quo is far easier to continue with, is it not?
For me, the big consideration has always been freedom. I want to get the pimps and the government out of their hair to the maximum extent it's reasonable to do so. The government mandating health requirements for bordellos seems reasonable. I'm not sure it's necessary for escorts. In a bordello situation, like any other employment situation, one can be encouraged by the "boss" to disregard health-related rules to further the company's bottom line. By contrast, the escort operates based on self-interest.
In the end, prostitution takes so many forms it seems hopeless for any government to regulate and tax them all. Take, for example, the girls who work hotel bars ready to be picked up or the ones who depend upon cab drivers for referrals, paying the cab drivers a kickback.
As long as there is a demand for no-strings sex—and there always will be—there will be those ready to respond to that need and fill that niche.
I don't know about "hopeless." In Nevada police routinely stop the girls who work the streets to make sure they're licensed and carrying proof of a recent medical check-up. So, cops basically. "Protect and serve" and so on and so forth.
I'm sure they do, but the girls who work the Internet, the hotel bar girls, and the ones who depend on referrals from taxi drivers and doormen are pretty far beyond the reach of the cops most of the time. I would think this is where most of the business has gone, as it would when the streets are being cracked down on. These girls simply don't want to be brought into the system at all whether by being arrested or by being "protected." As long as there's a stigma on sex work, many girls and women would as soon not have it on their record at all, whether for reasons legal or illegal.
Regrettably Americans are one of the largest customer bases for "sex slaves." It is an aspect of our society that I find very revolting. Pedophilia, in all it's different forms, is a huge problem both here and abroad. I recently saw a documentary where the Hasidic Jews of NYC were implicated in a pedophile ring involving young boys. Evidently the Catholic priests have some competition. Sick phucks.
True it's a huge problem. However, I suspect there's a lot of daylight between the 15 year old Ukrainian girl being sold on the Internet to pedophiles and the 21 year old independent escort or the girl in the sheer gown looking for customers in the hotel bar, where a 15 year old wouldn't even be allowed.
Why? Only someone with an obsession for underage kids would dare risk the extremely high penalties for being caught, not to mention that I think most non-pedophiles, like you and me, find the thought of taking advantage of a child disgusting.
Beyond that, being caught in the pedophilia net is bad. You'd be better off robbing a bank or committing second degree murder. At least you wouldn't have to report to the local police station whenever you relocated or notify your neighbors that you had a record as a sex offender.
It's similar in the porn industry. While the media and government like to pretend it's all much the same and interrelated, pedophile porn actually exists in an underworld separate from mainstream porn, and the worst stuff is actually homemade and shared among peers in that underworld. Mainstream pornographers just want to make a buck, not do prison time.