Saturday, November 22, 2008
Prostitution is not 'control' of women: it's the exploitation of men
The Government has had to admit that there is no public support at all for outlawing prostitution; especially for a one-sided outlawing where only the men paying for it are criminalised -- that is, victimised. So instead, it proposes more legislation based on entirely false extreme feminist notions about 'control' of women.
As representatives of prostitutes, like Niki Adams, regularly loudly complain: the number of women 'trafficked' is a figment of feminist imagination. The trick the Home Office and other feminist advocate organisations employ is just to misrepresent the totals for women crossing borders as the numbers of women supposedly made to cross borders against their will. But there is very clear research on the question of 'trafficking', and it shows it to be a minuscule problem. And it's not just the research but what has been shown in practice. As a good example, ahead of the World Cup in Germany huge resources were put into setting up systems to find 'trafficked' women. A grand total of just five were ever found.
It is a similar story when it comes to the raids on 'massage parlours' here in Britain. Contrary to the Home Office propaganda, the great majority of women who work in 'massage parlours' and in prostitution as it otherwise manifests are native British. Of any non-British girls police have found in raids, almost all are foreigners either legally here (usually EU citizens) or illegals. Despite pressure and incentives, police have not succeeded in getting the girls to say that they've been 'trafficked'. That's because they haven't been. As the principal researcher into this issue, Jo Doezema, concludes: women may well come here and find that their working conditions are not as they had hoped; but they did come here of their own free will. Clearly, indeed there are some women who have been 'trafficked', but it is a tiny problem (0.1% of UK prostitutes according to the police's own report after Operation Pentameter: the obvious reason why the trafficking unit has had its funding withdrawn.)
All is disinformation regarding the street prostitution scene as well. Contrary to what the Home Office would have us believe, this is a very small fraction of the prostitution scene as a whole, yet even here the pimp is very thin on the ground. The man who may be looking out for the typically very part-time street-walker is usually simply the woman's boyfriend. The woman may be supplementing the income of both of them, but you can bet that the new legislation will be abused to make out that clients of the women are paying for sex with a 'controlled' woman.
The 'massage parlours' are in the Government's sights for a similar abuse. These are businesses that suit many women because they can simply turn up for a shift without having to do any of the organisational side of obtaining clients. The woman gives a cut of her takings to the 'parlour' owner to cover the owner's efforts. This again is not 'control' of women. It is actually less control of women than is exercised by any employer. Women in 'massage parlours' are self-employed and they are notorious for absenteeism! Yet you can bet that the 'control' ruse will be used as a pretext to close the places down.
The ostensible rationale behind all of this is to help women who have taken the prostitution route, but in fact it is motivated by the very reverse. The subtext is that women by definition cannot have made a free choice to become a prostitute, and that therefore they must be 'controlled' by men. No amount of testimony from the women themselves causes any deviation to this mantra. This is because the actual basis of the politics is naked hatred of men. This comes from a failed feminism that in desperation goes to an extreme; feminism itself being very much in sync with the perennial social need to 'control' men, that is ever likely to engender an extreme prejudice against them. It also comes from competition amongst women, and the feeling that women who give sex freely are 'letting the side down'.
The end result of the thrust of Government meddling is to push prostitution to being less safe for the provider (and for the client). The street prostitute is to be denied the simple alternative of the 'massage parlour'. That she may be able to set up in partnership with another prostitute as a prostitute-controlled two-woman brothel is impractical, because these women mostly don't have either the nous or the inclination to organise, as evidenced by their often chaotic lives. Yes, there is an increasing sophistication whereby women are advertised through websites as 'escorts', but although some of these are set up by the women themselves, most are on-line through an agency. So there's another supposedly evil figure in the background the Government will want the police to go after.
Well, given this impending crackdown, and the increasing predilection for students to take to prostitution, it could be that a big development will be individual 'sugar-daddy'/'sugar-babe' arrangements. Here a man pays a woman on the understanding that he is the only one in receipt of paid-for sex, and that she is not a prostitute. If this is the form that the Government intends paid-sex to be restricted to, then it will serve to establish further that paying for sex is just a normal form of sex. After all, all sex that men have is paid for in some way. A common joke is that the more explicit the payment, the less expensive is the sex!
The perception will be more and more that sex is not the exploitation of women by men, but the opposite. Prostitution is so obviously exploitation for money by women of the universal male desire for sex with a variety of women, that it has taken a vehemently feminist truth-distortion to have persuaded people it was ever otherwise. This mis-perception will disappear. Is this what the Government intends? Consequences are not at issue: all is posturing.