Legalizing Prostitution Essay

1168 words - 5 pages

For many centuries prostitution has been present in our world. Since ancient times, there have been people selling, buying and controlling the sex industry. Although this is one of the longest living businesses in history, it is still one of the most misunderstood by the public. Anti-prostitution campaigners try and bring in issues of morals and false facts to scare us out of legalizing something most people do on a daily basis. Luckily, there are plenty of facts that prove otherwise and the issue of morals affects no one but the people who are involved. So where is the issue? By legalizing prostitution, we are giving workers the rights they are born with and a safer environment to work in.
One detail that has been brought up when debating anti-prostitution laws is that making it illegal is a violation of human rights. Prostitutes are very heavily discriminated against by not only the people who disagree with the act and believe it to be immoral, but also by police and other law enforcement officials. When an officer attempts an arrest, they belittle the prostitute by being harsh and aggressive. All arrests involve entrapment, invasion of privacy and/or the use of discriminating tactics. For many prostitutes, fighting against an arrest is unheard of. Not only do they fear their officers but they are unaware of their right to fight for their rights. Rarely do they realize that they have rights to be considered and that most arrests are unlawful and therefore unacceptable. According to a quote from the PEN, "No person's human or civil rights should be violated on the basis of their trade, occupation, work, calling or profession.” (The Prostitutes’ Education Network)
In addition, the enforcement of anti-prostitution laws makes the one selling sex the criminal as opposed to the buyer. Roughly about 90% of prostitutes are arrested while only 10% of clients are arrested even though the punishment should technically be distributed equally. But in reality, officers tend to steer away from arresting clients since they generally have more money and can use that to fight against it. This causes prostitutes to be more vulnerable because the law against prostitution gives the client more control of the situation which can be very dangerous. According to the article, ‘A Human Rights Question’, Laura Reanda explains that “Police harassment does not end prostitution but drives it underground, increases the power of pimps and contributes to the psychological violence against women” (Reanda) In Amsterdam, more specifically the Red Light District, prostitution was made legal in attempt to better the circumstances and make it safer. According to Lauran Bethel who traveled to Holland for research, this tactic had proved itself to be affective. The government provides monitors over the standards of the work place. The authorities are there to protect workers against exploitation and violations from harmful clients. By putting them in better surroundings they are...

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