Legalize Prostitution? One Opinion

 With the recent debate over Graigslist I started thinking about the concept of sex being illegal.  Which lead me to research the history of and laws pertaining to prostitution.                 

 Prostitution is considered the world’s oldest profession.  Trading sex for other goods or services is certainly not a new or novel concept.  According to Wikipedia, prostitution falls into the sex industry category which makes perfect sense.  What doesn’t make sense is that pornography film stars operate within the “legal” spectrum while Prostituting does not.  I have yet to find this gray dividing line that separates the two.  I believe the performers being filmed having sexual intercourse (as well as almost every other fathomable sexual activity) in a movie are getting paid for the activity.  What is the difference that makes one act legal while the other is considered illegal?  Is it that one participant isn’t paying the other or because they are both being paid by someone not physically involved in the action?  Maybe there is a Law that allows sexual displays if the enjoyment is faked.  I’m at a loss.                 

Generally, the act of Prostitution in the U.S. became illegal between 1910 and 1915 due largely to the efforts of The Women’s Temperance Union, the very same group that helped to bring about Prohibition.  In California It wasn’t until 1961 that we introduced Penal Code 647 prohibiting “disorderly conduct,” which includes acts of  prostitution (647b).  Persons guilty of Penal code 647 (f)  includes being under the influence (of whatever) in a public place and the list goes on.  This Code contains 1,559 words, sections a – j with subsections to some.   There is a lot of taxpayer money spent on “vice” squads that vigorously go after the prostitutes, their Johns, .                 

I know there are potential dangers in the business of prostituting, and though violence may occur during any encounter the largest incidences occur to the “street walkers”.  The street walkers constitute about 20% of the methods used to engage in the business.  Pertaining to the Graigslist debate I feel the Attorney Generals are seeking political attention.  The self righteous do-gooders that have deemed themselves our moral guardians should get a life and tend to their own affairs.                

According to SHOUSE,  which is a Sex Crimes Consultations service on the web, the term “Prostitution” means engaging in sexual intercourse or any lewd act with another person in exchange for money or other consideration.   The “or other considerations” could mean just about anything at all.   A “lewd” act is defined as any act that involves touching the genitals, buttocks, or female breast of either person by another person that is done with the specific intent to arouse or gratify sexually.  Don’t slap your girlfriend/boyfriend on the butt in public, that’s a lewd act.  What about that dinner date?  Hmm, I guess if a sexual activity occurs after dinner and a movie the cops could use a restaurant and movie receipts as proof of payment.  Dang, never thought about it like that.               

Turn on the TV and watch a commercial.  Sexual references are everywhere and for a simple reason, because sex sells.  You can’t deny a Viagra add isn’t promoting sex.  The sole purpose of Viagra is to aid in the act of sex.  All the legal sexual aids that are sold are not for display purposes only.   You think the on-line dating services are strictly platonic?  What if I leave money on the nightstand for my girlfriend after having sex the previous night?  I didn’t think she was a prostitute but this law says she is.  These are but a few items or thoughts that now leave me puzzled in regards to our bi-polar views toward sex and sexuality.                      In a society with so many “dangerous” individuals I think the Officers we pay to “Protect and Serve” should apply their time and energy much more productively.  Chase the dangerous people, the murders, rapists, and child abusers.  Leave the ones providing pleasure and hurting no-one alone, or offer them some protection from the predators in our society.  I just don’t understand how the agreement between two consenting adults to engage in a sexual activity is the business of anyone other than the two adults engaging, let alone the Government.  After reading some of the law I believe we all engage in prostitution without ever realizing it, or at least if you’re having sex.

                Maybe I’ll expand on some situations that place the concept of how the occurrence of sex and the presence of money seem to have a close relationship.  Regardless of whether money is changing hands for or being spent in the pursuit of, sex and money are inseparable.  We can purchase food, alcohol,  a place to sleep one night, or any number of short term pleasures.  Why shouldn’t a person be able to purchase a sexually gratifying experience.  Oh yeah, we can watch it legally but don’t you dare think about doing it yourself.  It’s ridiculous.

        Brian Fleming

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.