filed under Activism
BY Dave Segal
Last night the Judiciary Committee voted to criminalize prostitution. Prostitutes would be liable for fines of up to $1,000 and/or prison terms of up to a year.
(I understand that the circumstances are not completely gendered, but will use such terminology nonetheless, cuz that’s how the presumptions work on Smith Hill.)
So who’s the pimp now?
A woman, who up until passage will have been a legal prostitute, shall soon be subject to fines and/or time in prison. How is she most likely to pay said fines? — by turning another half-dozen tricks, in an economy that provides her with no alternative. She’ll sell her body, and we’ll recoup the rewards.
Should she fail in accruing income as such, if she doesn’t pay up, the state wields the cudgel, yanks the leash: Further dues, or physical coercion — up to a year in the can.
The new pimps? You and I.
Though, so we might sleep better, she’s offered a supposedly benevolent affirmative defense: Simply turn on her managers and/or captors and/or traffickers, and get out of jail free. Then see her retribution on the streets instead, either domestically… or in whatever land she hails from.
Indeed, we’ll have solved the prostitution problem: It’ll be out of sight, and out of our shortsighted minds.