“Proposed Israeli law would jail prostitute clients”
(Jerusalem Post headline)
In a few days time a Knesset committee will consider a law which, among other things, proposes criminalising the clients of prostitutes. This is manifestly absurd and unreasonable, and is a desperate attempt to regulate a situation which requires a totally different approach.
Prostitution, until now, has been treated by successive governments as an activity which requires control within a criminal framework. Being a prostitute is not, in itself, illegal. The crime is living off the earnings of a prostitute. As with all previous attempts to control activities deemed to be against the best interests of society, this current plan is also doomed to fail. One only has to consider what happened to the prohibition on the sale of alcohol in America in the 1920’s, and now the failure of all efforts to control drug trafficking, to understand that more legislation simply drives the problem underground.
What is needed is a radically different approach. Rather than criminalising the prostitutes and/or their clients, it is time for us to face up to the reality. These women (or, sometimes, men) provide a much needed service in a professional manner, for which they charge a fee. That service will continue to be required, no matter what laws are passed. Consequently, a far better, and more realistic approach, would be to acknowledge openly that fact, and deal with it accordingly.
Government bodies, social services and the police should combine to provide support, and a comfortable working environment in which the services could continue to be provided, without threat of criminal prosecution. Rather than being harassed, these working ladies should be protected, provided with appropriate health services and controlled, perhaps even to the point of paying tax on their earnings. This is not as absurd as it might sound: a similar scheme is already in operation in parts of Germany.
The main problem will arise from the pimps, and others who make money from the activities of the prostitutes. This aspect is, and should be, criminal, and it is THIS that the police need to control and eliminate, as far as possible. What is unacceptable to society is the human trafficking aspect. Since that has not been controlled to date, it is that element that requires the energies of the legal services. Not the girls, and certainly not their clients.
It seems extraordinary to me that, in a society containing large numbers of ultra-orthodox Jews and Muslims, whose religious beliefs preclude pre-marital sex, the thought of eliminating prostitution should even arise. It is a grossly unrealistic premise. A few nights spent in the area of Tel Baruch beach in Tel Aviv will suffice to show the reality, and the necessity of the services the ladies provide. There is even a body of opinion that claims that the very existence of open prostitution reduces substantially the incidence of rape.
One thing is absolutely certain. No matter the legislation, Prostitution will not disappear. It is not called “the oldest profession” for nothing. It has endured for thousands of years, and will continue for as long as mankind inhabits this planet.
Why is it considered evil? Is a prostitute less of a person than the wife in a loveless marriage who endures sex to maintain her financial security? Or a young girl marrying a wealthy old man, decades her senior? Prostitution is not just about money for a specific act for a limited amount of time with a total stranger. It is also a state of mind in so-called “normal”relationships.I
And what about “recreational”sex? Sex just for the hell of it? Or sex for relief? It’s true that the internet today has many sites where sex is offered for free, but not everyone is into computers, especially the Haredim. What are they supposed to do? If I’m not mistaken, even masturbation is Biblically forbidden.
( Full disclosure)
1. I, myself, have in the past, engaged the services of these working ladies in a number of different countries. I think the experiences were mutually satisfactory, as far as I could tell. Only in Israel did the girls arrive with credit card machines at the ready. Strange, but organised at least. Unfortunately, the advent of AIDS caused me to no longer pursue this line of recreational activity, as I am sure it has for many people. The fear of disease is a far more potent controller than any man-made laws.
2. Many years ago I discovered that I had a pimp on my payroll! Needless to say, I was totally unaware of the fact that the company chief accountant was pimping out his wife and using our office facilities in the process. Only after the police arrived and arrested him did I learn what had been going on. After due process, he was fired – and promptly sued the company for wrongful dismissal. At the Industrial Tribunal he claimed that his private life had nothing to do with his professional abilities. Privately, I sympathise with this view, but as CEO of a large company in the retail field serving multinational conglomerates , I was left with no option from the position of corporate responsibility.
For your interest, the Tribunal dismissed his claim. He might have improved his chances for success had he not turned up at the hearing with his pregnant Black girlfriend, looking every inch a hooker!
But I digress.
As I said before, the ladies are in a respectable profession, provide a service and do so for a mutually negotiated fee. Much like lawyers. So what’s the difference between a prostitute and a lawyer? There are a number of comparisons available:
- One you look forward to visiting, the other one you wish you’d never met.
- One is illegal, and shouldn’t be; the other one is legal, and shouldn’t be.
- One walks the street openly; the other one hides in an office.
- One lets you lie back and enjoy it; the other one bends you over, and you don’t enjoy it.
- One gives you what you paid for; the other one, you never stop paying.
- A prostitute will stop screwing you after you’re dead.
Andyboy – Telling it as it is
- SEX TRAFFICKER? Proof of the absurdity of the law. (harlotsparlour.wordpress.com)
- Life is hard enough for prostitutes without our work being criminalised (harlotsparlour.wordpress.com)
- ‘This house believes that prostitution should be legal.’ (brandhkgordonwong.wordpress.com)