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88
8 votes
Apr 23, 2015

If prostitution were legalized, I think it would be crucial to require prostitutes to be regularly tested for HIV and other STDs. However, enforcing this would require setting up an entirely new system by which to make sure they've been tested, some sort of proof they have been (perhaps cards) that inform "Johns" what STDs, if any, the card holder has.

Prostitution goes on already and will continue to go on whether it is legalized or not. If we legalize it then we can at least keep people safer and better informed.

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83
main reply
6 votes,
Apr 23, 2015

This article is a pretty good starting point for a basis in discussing law:

plato.stanford.edu/entries/law-limits/

I believe all laws should be based on quantifiable harm to the perpetrator and/or others. We must also consider how this harm relates to consent. i.e. do we have a moral right to prevent someone from causing quantifiable harm to themselves or to consent to be harmed? The consent question applies as well to the debate over the right to end one's life.

Morality is a very shaky reason for legislation, and I'm guessing prostitution laws are based mostly on moral grounds - same with drugs. I don't care if someone in the privacy of their home jams ketchup bottles up their arse, but I do take offence if they were to do this in public. Oddly enough I don't have any problems with people being naked in public. I don't have any urge to do this myself, but I also don't see any harm. Same with marijuana - I rarely smoke myself, and I don't see any harm in legalising and regulating it as we do alcohol. Meth and similar highly dissociative drugs are a different matter as they carry a very real risk of harm.

I don't doubt that sex workers experience physical and psychological challenges. On the psychological side, there may well be harm caused, but how much of this harm is due to the stigma associated with their work. Would any of us want our own children to become strippers or a prostitutes? Sure, we could be supportive if they chose to work in the sex industry, but I doubt anything but a tiny minority would be truly happy.

I agree with your pragmatic angle on this. Prostitution will not go away, so the best we can do right now is to minimise the harm. Legalisation and control would remove much of the physical risk, and may go some way to reducing the stigma.

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0
0 votes,
Apr 23, 2015

I have no experience with meth, but I know it's an amphetamine, which are also used in several ADD/ADHD medications. There can be a very delicate balance of harm vs benefit in things like this. Not to say I don't support legal prostitution, because I do. Policies like we're discussing to minimize STD transfer exist and as far as I know, are reasonably successful. I know that the brothel in Nevada (US's only legal one, if I remember correctly) has a 'dick check' rule, where the girl must make sure the penis is clean and in good general health before otherwise interacting with it. As long as such policies are followed, I don't even see any other harm to minimize.

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Load more (1) in reply to MrInternetMan's post (This article is a pretty good starting point for a basis in discussing law: [link] I believe all laws should be based on quantifiable harm to the perpetrator and/or others. We must also consider how t...)
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100
main reply
3 votes,
Apr 23, 2015

Other countries have such systems in place. Some overseas military facilities also test local prostitutes to make sure STDs are kept to a minimum. It's possible.

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100
main reply
1 vote,
Apr 23, 2015

The only way I could see this disappearing is have the government run it.

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100
User voted No.
main reply
1 vote,
Nov 4, 2015

You're taking a very one-sided view of the STD/HIV situation. You know where prostitutes get STDs? From Johns! Wouldn't it also be crucial for Johns to be regularly tested for STDs and HIV and have cards establishing their disease-free status before being able to go to prostitutes? Should married people be allowed to go to prostitutes, and if so, should they be legally responsible for informing their spouses so they're aware of their risk of contracting HIV and or STDs?
Also, what happens if, despite all precautions, i.e. the prostitute uses the pill and the John uses a condom, the woman gets pregnant? She's going to be out of a job for around nine months and then have a child to raise. Will the John be required to pay child support? If not, why not? And who will support the prostitute while she's pregnant? Will the John take care of that? If not, who will?

And what about women who go to male prostitutes? Will male prostitutes be financially responsible for the children they father? And then we get to the situation of married women going to male prostitutes. In some states, including my own, a husband is financially responsible for any children his wife bears, whether he is their biological father or not. How would you like to come home and find out that your wife has been seeing male prostitutes and now you're responsible for the care and keep of the child with which one of them impregnated her?

As for the argument that prostitution goes on already and will continue to go on whether it's legal or not, that can be said of a lot of things, like murder, spousal abuse, child abuse, child pornography, etc., etc. The fact that we can't entirely stop an action by making it illegal does not, in and of itself, justify its legalization.

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67
main reply
3 votes,
Apr 23, 2015

Yes, it should be legalized. There is no legitimate reason for it not being legalized. I am a firm believer that legalized prostitution would cut down on the number of sexual assaults.

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100
2 votes
Apr 23, 2015

As a native Nevadan, I grew up in the only state in the U.S. to have legal prostitution. In Nevada, it is only legal outside of city limits, and only in particular counties. The girls are tested regularly and they are treated as legal workers. However, a great many prostitutes operate illegally inside the cities and are never tested. So, the legality of the practice does not necessarily keep it clean and off the streets. Only the workers in the licensed brothels are tested and regulated. Legalization doesn't reduce the amount of illegal sex trade, it merely increase the overall amount of prostitution that happens.

Let me be clear: I am not against legal prostitution, but I think it is important to keep harm reduction in mind when creating legal policies that govern the sex trade. The main problem we see with legal prostitution in Nevada (and elsewhere) is that there is always a percentage of sex workers who are enslaved. Sexual trafficking is not always easy to identify - often girls who try to flee are beaten and threatened, or even killed. In Germany, where sex trade is legal, authorities estimate that at any given time about 10-14% of prostitutes are working under threat of death or harm. Many are from other countries and are trafficked by mafias and corrupt officials.

In most sex for trade transactions, the seller is at a disadvantage. It is the seller who is desperate - 95% of prostitutes would leave the work if they had a choice.
sfu.ca/cmns/research/newswatch/test_folder/Representat...prostitution.htm

However, there are some sex workers who do enjoy their work and perform it willingly. So, the question becomes how do we allow consenting adults to engage in this practice, but still protect sex workers from abuse and slavery?

The Nordic model is one approach that has been successful in reducing harm and negative side effects from prostitution. Basically, their law attacks the "demand" part of the equation. The selling of sex is decriminalized, but the buying of sex is outlawed. This legal model places the liability squarely on the shoulder of the buyer, the person with the money. The seller is seen as a victim, and is not punished, but empowered to report the buyer if need be. Sweden, Norway, Finland, Iceland and Denmark all have variations of this approach encoded into law. Finland still allows the selling of sex in one-on-one negotiations between consenting adults, who are citizens. But, their regulations strictly outlaw any and all kinds of third party brokering of sex: no pimps, no madams, no brothels. Non-citizens are also barred from sex work in Finland, this byline is intended to specifically thwart the sex trafficking of Asian and Russian women.

I like the Nordic model for harm reduction pretty well, but my own views are somewhat different and can be reviewed in more depth here: daerice.wordpress.com/2013/02/28/sacred-prostitution-a...rchetypal-whore/

Sources on Harm Reduction studies related to prostitution:

Cho, Seo-Young, Dreher, Axel and Neumayer, Eric. "Does Legalized Prostitution Increase Human Trafficking?" World Development, 41 No. 1 (2013): 67-82.

Danailova-Trainor, Gergana, and Patrick Belset. "Globalization and the illicit market for human trafficking: an empirical analysis of supply an demand." Policy Integration Department, International Labour Office Geneva. Working Paper No. 78, December 2006. ilo.org/wcmsp5/groups/public/---dgreports/---integrati.../wcms_081759.pdf. Accessed March 18, 2013.

Skilbrei, May-Len and Charlotta Holmstrom. "Is There a Nordic Prostitution Regime?" Crime and Justice Vol 40, No. 1 (2011): 479-517.) 0-www.jstor.org.innopac.library.unr.edu/stable/10.1086/659841. Accessed March 18, 2013.

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100
1 vote
Apr 23, 2015

Even the UN is in favor of legalizing prostitution globally pushing it as an optional occupation for women. Now I'm picturing single mom's hanging a shingle on their porch with a red light and she is "working" while the children are doing their homework. While I understand the idea of consenting adults, of enterprise, of supplying a need, there are other considerations as well. Do our children deserve to have a decent childhood or not, or is the only consideration what adults seek ? One country with legal prostitution will not give welfare to women who could prostitute themselves to earn money. I personally do not find this to be a great idea unless it is separate from the home and well regulated. Not sure what kind of a world we are moving into.

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100
1 vote
Apr 23, 2015

This one is so obvious I have a hard time understanding why it is illegal.

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100
User voted Yes.
1 vote
Apr 23, 2015

The government has a poor track record of creating and enforcing antiquated notions of morality be it sex, drugs, what you can and can't listen to or watch... and every time they do it they open the door for lucrative criminal activity.

Wait! Maybe that's what they're trying to do! Well then...

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100
1 vote
Jun 22, 2015

Yes, because it would be regulated Incorporated into society in a much cleaner way. prostitution would be treated as a profession, and healthcare for that industry would prevent the spread of STD's. hopefully. Also, don't be naive, prostitution has been around for all of recorded history for crying out loud, ask the Greeks, Romans, Sumerians, Egyptians, the list goes on.

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100
User voted Yes.
1 vote
Aug 11, 2015

There would definitely need to be some kind of regulation to it though, like having a permit and making regular STD tests mandatory. If someone failed the test, failed to take a test, or had previously failed a test prior to applying for a permit, they wouldn't be able to receive a permit or would have their current permit revoked. That would help prevent the spreading of STD's from being a result of legalizing this.

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100
User voted Yes.
1 vote
Sep 2, 2015

In Germany prostitution is not only legal - it also comes with massive governmental paid social benefits like free health care, pension and social security. You can even make a degree as a prostitute. It is a normal job like any other job in Germany thus there is no related criminality with prostitution and the girls are save and earn good money. Which means more taxes for the government by the way.

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75
4 votes
Apr 23, 2015

Criminalizing the activities of consenting adults is a waste of police resources and tax payer money.

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75
4 votes
Apr 23, 2015

I think prostitution is an inherently exploitative system, that is a result of poor social conditions. I think in societies with large inequality and social problems legalized prostitution would be better than illegal since it would be regulated and safer. However, I would like to see it gone forever.

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50
main reply
2 votes,
Apr 23, 2015

I think people do have moral issues with prostitution. Luckily I don't care. As long as it is between consenting adults and private, It never happened.Which brings up the question, where do you see it now? And the issue is moral vs legal. Moral is an opinion. Legal is an opinion. Both are wrong. It is Constitutional and a human right. And none of our business.

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0
0 votes,
Jul 24, 2015

My objections towards (the act of) prostitution are not moralistic. I agree with dylopa on prostitution being an inherently exploitative system (towards prostitutes). That makes it our business. Ideally, it should be private and between consenting adults, but consent is a state of mind; perhaps even a luxury.

Asking whether or not prostitution should be legalized is to me like asking whether bullying (a systematic practice that "only" causes discomfort if the victim interprets it that way, which makes it consensual if he doesn't) at the workplace (adult situation) should or should not be ignored - maybe he just needs to work someplace else, right? He signed a contract, and I don't work there, so it's none of my business.

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25
4 votes
Apr 23, 2015

Did you ever wonder why it is called "The World's Oldest profession?" Should theft be legalized? By supporting capital punishment, war, stand-your-ground, etc. aren't we condoning and therefore legalizing murder?

Whether directly by parents selling their children, drug gangs coercing young women, or indirectly by just the biological imperative of feeding your body food or drugs, how much free choice is actually involved in a woman's choice to sell her body? Just wondering as I have only a passing acquaintance with prostitution, one neighbor was a part timer for the fun of it, but another was a part timer when the food stamps ran out and baby daddy was late with child support payments or just skipped altogether. The third was a crack addict feeding her addiction.

Would love to hear female perspectives on this, because mine has a potential male bias, I stand against Legalized prostitution.

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100
main reply
1 vote,
Apr 23, 2015

There is free choice and a system could be put into place to make it legal. For example, a consenting adult of at least 18 years of age. People may choose to enter into prostitution for various reasons but I don't see the harm in one consenting adult compensating another consenting adult for sexual activity.

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0
User voted Yes.
0 votes
Apr 23, 2015

It's about time to remove christian morality from the legal system and the government of this country. If a woman or a man want to make money on their backs (or however), then it's really not the government's place to stop them. Matter of fact, think of the taxable income... THAT should light up those greedy jerks in government...

There are churches, and then there is the government, you can attend either or both but shouldn't be able to attend both by going to just one of them.

As, and I most likely paraphrase, what god said... "give unto the lord what is the lord's and give unto Caesar what is Caesar's...", meaning, government and religion are two separate entities, recognize this and keep it so.

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0
opinion
0 votes
Aug 27, 2015

It could be legal, but it is way too public right now.

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0
User voted No.
0 votes
Mar 4, 2016

I don't believe, prostitution is like that little toy you use one time and ends up hurting you, like giving little cuts in the hands, but you use again, anyway.

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