Amnesty International Votes To Support Decriminalization of Sex Trade

woman dancer100px-Amnesty_International_logo.svgAfter a well-publicized international debate, the delegates from Amnesty International voted on Tuesday to support a policy that calls for decriminalization of the sex trade, including prostitution, payment for sex and brothel ownership. Amnesty International has been the focused of a determined and passionate lobby campaign by celebrities opposing the move. However, the majority still found that criminalization contributes to the abuse of women and girls around the world.

The vote was taken by 400 members from 60 countries. They heard for a host of Hollywood stars and luminaries like Jimmy Carter calling for the group to reject the proposal and “stay true to its mission.”

The group spent two years studying the impact of criminalization in comparing jurisdictions with legal and illegal sex trades. It found that those jurisdictions criminalizing the sex trade had a higher incidence of arbitrary arrest and detention, extortion and harassment, and physical and sexual violence. With the vote, the group will now join other groups seeking decriminalization in lobbying governments and politicians. Libertarians and others support decriminalization as a matter of individual choice so long as the trade involves consenting adults. They argue that it is easier to regulate the industry in places like Nevada where it is legal.

Others argue to shifting the most severe penalties of the “johns” but keeping the trade illegal to prevent the abuse of young girls and women.
Margot Wallstrom, Sweden’s foreign minister, insisted that the concept of choice for women in the trade is a “myth.”

What do you think?

77 thoughts on “Amnesty International Votes To Support Decriminalization of Sex Trade”

  1. Lisa, LOL! If I ran a brothel, I would call my women sex therapists. And, I would charge what other therapists get. This issue is somewhat comparable to Prohibition. Making prostitution legal would take away many of the problems we had w/ the great failed experiment of Prohibition. Ken Burns did a good documentary[although tedious as is his wont] on Prohibition. Yes, we had serious problems w/ alcohol prior to Prohibition and now. But, the violence and corruption caused by making booze illegal was much worse. What making prostitution legal will help do is to take away much of the underworld control of women. It will not be a panacea by any means. But, it will be an improvement. I don’t see it happening in the US except for places like counties in Nevada. Prostitution is not legal in Vegas. That’s a joke. I would never expect prostitution to be legal in religious areas like Utah. It should be locally controlled, abiding local sensibilities.

    1. Nick – Ken Burn’s Jazz is very good. There is a lot of great jazz music to break up the narration.

    2. Nick: Gotta disagree with the “local control” concept. Either prostitution is a legitimate profession or it’s not. States/municipalities should be able to *regulate* the activity—no soliciting on street corners, regular checkups for STDs—but the women (and men; some of them hook as well) should be able to practice their trade in either brothels or their own homes no matter what the community bluenoses think of the profession.

      1. Decades ago when I was in college the local TV news broadcast a story about some women who were providing ‘special counseling’ in their home to men from one of the local factories.

        The neighbors became suspicious when the women had a parking lot constructed in their side yard. If we are to believe news reports, it was busy all hours of the day and night. Well, what do you expect – in those happier economic times the plant worked three shifts, and apparently the women did too.

  2. If it’s legalized, be prepared to see them in every Wallmart. Tax it, regulate it, but I don’t want it at every corner. Next let’s change it to the Sodom and Gammora Law. Does that mean it won’t be PC to call them whores anymore! 😂😂

  3. Mark Kernes, I read a pretty good book recently, Sin in the Second City. Much of the movement to stomp out prostitution emanated from Chicago, which had the most wide open prostitution @ the turn of the century. Girls were sold by families into prostitution @ young ages. I support legal prostitution, and that is an industry where I would abide a strong union.

  4. “Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience. They may be more likely to go to Heaven yet at the same time likelier to make a Hell of earth. This very kindness stings with intolerable insult. To be “cured” against one’s will and cured of states which we may not regard as disease is to be put on a level of those who have not yet reached the age of reason or those who never will; to be classed with infants, imbeciles, and domestic animals.”

    C.S. Lewis doth have a point.

    A woman’s body is her own and thus may do with it as she so pleases. Sex between consenting adults is sex between consenting adults moral busybodies and politically correct over criminalization of basic human activity be damned lest we damn the entirety of humanity to being criminals for having the temerity of being human.

  5. Should never have been illegal to begin with. Legalize it.

  6. Whatever “Amnesty International” is, it cannot be found in the Preamble, Constitution or Bill of Rights.

    Perhaps it exists in the Communist Manifesto.

    America would do well to get back to basics.

    The Ten Commandments have been consistent with no “amendments” and would be a good place to start.

    James Madison expected no further “amendments” after the Bill of Rights which might “destroy” the very Constitution itself.

    God assigned no authority to “amend” the Ten Commandments.

    The original, uncorrupted American founding documents provided for freedom of the individual, severely limited government and ended the tyranny and despotism of a monarchy or other form of dictatorship. The American founding documents were the best hope for freedom and free men. The founding documents prevail in America and establish America as a SOVEREIGN nation.

    1. “James Madison expected no further “amendments” after the Bill of Rights which might “destroy” the very Constitution itself. … God assigned no authority to “amend” the Ten Commandments. ”

      If you have not noticed they ain’t no 11th commandment ‘thou shalt not amend the constitution’.

      What ever Madison expected, it seems clear god in all her majesty knew there would be amendments and took care to leave open that possibility when she hammered out the commandments in stone. Petty smart girl – figuring all that out thousands of years ago.

      Funny how some people get confused – its the commandments engraved in stone, not the constitution.

    2. And yet… prostitution was an accepted part of early American life, and every major city in the colonies had at least one bordello, and they didn’t go away once the revolution was over and the Constitution signed. Also, the laws of the United States are in no way based on the Bible or the Ten Commandments, though all contain similar laws and prohibitions. And finally, believers should understand that if god were in any way opposed to sex, why did it make the act so pleasurable? Didn’t have to, but did.

  7. After I graduated from McCluer High School in Ferguson I came back and found Sweet Sue a couple of years later. We went on a date to London House East on the East Side and saw Muddy Waters. That was a great nightclub. I dated her for awhile. She was a teacher at McCluer for many years. Porkin for a few dollars was just something she felt she had to do to get her way through college expenses. No harm was done. She was only an occasional porker for pay back in her college years. There was a principal at the school who tried to get in her pants but that never was going to happen. Never downgrade some human who has taken the hooker route. They can each be good humans. Now if you want to downgrade a group of people by title or class then go after principals. None of them are “pals”. They look down on other people and they are snakes.

  8. So happy to see so many I’ve disagreed with in the past on other issues are on the same side as I am concerning legalizing prostitution. It’s definitely a freedom whose time has come.

  9. No. The cathouse is what one calls a house of prostitution. So the human cathouse is just a whore house and a dog cathouse is a dog whorehouse.

    Not all whores stay that way. Some quit and take on other jobs. Some women are only part time whores or occastional whores. We had one at London House East in East St. Louis back in the 60s. Her name was Sweet Sue. She was a barmaid but once in a while she would do a roll in the hay for pay. She was working her way through college at SIU Edwardsville. She majored in Home Economics. I was friends with her. Once we employed her name, or a derivation, to put on the name of a “ringer” at Fairmont Park Racetrack. It was my idea. The mob guy named a ringer from Louisville: Sue’s Sweet Secret. The horse was like 40 to 1 or something and a bunch of us went to the track and put down bets. I only had a few dollars but I came away happy with like eighty bucks. So later when Sweet Sue graduated from SIU she got a teachers job. pI was at McCluer High School in Ferguson on the first day of my Senior Year and she pulled up in the parking lot next to my 65 Mustang and we had a chat. She explained that she was now a Home Ec teacher but please do not tell anyone about her past job as a bar maid on the East Side. Of course I wont, I said and further dont tell anyone where I worked over there. So with that I explained the role of a teacher’s pet and I carried her books for her to class. She was a good looker. There is redemption in life and people will change roles over time.

    1. BarkinDog

      If you got together with David Alan Coe you could probably write a song as epic as ‘She Was into Whips and Chains, I Was into Pain’.

      May I suggest the key of Canis Minor.

  10. I did not say that I gave up hookers. When my half blind guy and I go to Amsterdam (me as the guide dog) he goes to a human cathouse and I go next door to the dog cathouse. He pays my way. There is a human hooker in there who will do some work on dogs but she is expensive. Meanwhile we are trying to get the State of NC to recognize the marriage between HumpinDog and his human female wife Betty Lou Thelma Liz. HumpinDog would chime in here on the aspects of humpin a female human but he is off marina living at Betty Lou Thelma Liz’s house.

  11. Maybe there would be a “Quicky Mart” for lunch hours. They could have a daily special called “The Really Happy Meal”.

  12. Back in a prior life when I was a human and was about 16 there was a job that I had for a short while in East Saint Louis in a cathouse. My job was to clean the rooms and the bedsheets. I did the laundry too. At the end of my first night– it was from about nine p.m. to three a.m.– I was done with the work and stood there expecting to get paid my Twelve dollars ($2 an hour). Well, the one gal (of three) asked if “I would like to take it out in trade?” And when I did not quite know what she meant all three of them gave me one hell of a roll in the hay. So, I went home happy but broke. I was working for my father in his plumbing business at the time and about a week later I was there in the shop all tired out and some guy came in who sold us plumbing supplies and blurted out that he had seen me at the cathouse over in East Saint Louis the other night. Well, my dad was not all that annoyed. He had noticed I was tired during the day when I needed energy to dig ditches or whatnot. But he commented. “Well, I guess you will learn something. I worked over there in a cathouse on the East Side when I was a youngin and they often tried to take it out in trade rather than pay me money. I hope they still do not do that. It is bad to be broke and the butt of a joke.”

    After that I respected my dad. I asked him questions thereafter so as to not make mistakes in life. I do not miss the plumbing jobs but if I was a human and could choose a job, it might be one night a week at the cathouse on the East Side cleaning rooms. There was one gal there that could knock your socks off. Good lookin, full of juice, ready for use. If ya know what I mean jelly bean.

    1. BarkinDog

      You gave up prostitutes for one of two reasons:

      1. Bob Barker neutered you.

      2. As a dog your mouth can reach anywhere on your body.

  13. “So a girl works her way through her doctorate program or finds it easier than being a waitress.

    Indeed, and seeing as there is no material difference between being a waitress or a hooker, the Welfare programs that require seeking employment can always fall back on poor girls leaning back everywhere.

    1. Chief Consort

      Monica Lewinsky would have been better off being a prostitute than an intern for Bill Clinton.

      The skillset is the same but she will never shed the Clinton stank and her happy ending came in 1996.

      Even Rahab had a certain renown beyond her job title.

      But then again the scarlet thread she showed Joshua wasn’t stuck in her buttcrack.

  14. The taxation thing is to be tuned. However, in countries where alcohol, tobacco, and other stuff that is responsible for much of the health costs of a nation are taxed and the proceeds steered towards the health care system; the cost per person for health care as good if not better than in the US is vastly-in some cases half or a third-less expensive. It’s a pay at the pump system where instead of a ‘bud’ costing less than a buck it costs more than a buck and no one really cares. If you drink so much ‘bud’ that a few bucks more for a dozen is a hardship, then perhaps a bit of treatment is necessary. The extra taxes could go to fund treatment centers.

    Back to legalizing Prostitution, it certainly can be abused but it is the right direction. Most, if not all, changes typically start of with an equal swing to the opposite direction of what was wrong and necessitated the change. Then a workable middle ground is found.

    I always liked the stories where the hooker was worldly and cool. This might give her or him a chance to be worldly and cool instead of a criminal. The US has enough criminals already. We don’t need to go looking for them lead by thumpers. The US needs to get rid of its big wide brushes and do a little detailing. Look what happened with the ‘War on Drugs’. Pot and smack are the same in the justice system. What stupidity. What a legacy for a President, ruining lives unnecessarily.

    So a girl works her way through her doctorate program or finds it easier than being a waitress. How long before the law gets out of America’s bedrooms? How long before a kid can take a toke without risking his entire life and career? How long before this country progresses?

  15. All forms of sex except heterosexual sex are okay for Feminists.
    PIV is rape and de facto coerced.
    Hetero sex must be criminalized, whether it involves prostitution or not.

    As a leading University level introductory women’s studies reader,Women’s Voices, Feminist Visions, by Susan M. Shaw and Janet Lee(fifth edition, 2012) notes:

    ““There are politics in sexual relationships because they occur in the context of a society that assigns power based on gender and other systems of inequality and privilege. . . . [T]he interconnections of systems are reflected in the concept of heteropatriarchy, the dominance associated with a gender binary system that presumes heterosexuality as a social norm. . . .
    “As many feminists have pointed out, heterosexuality is organized in such a way that the power men have in society gets carried into relationships and can encourage women’s subservience, sexually and emotionally.””

  16. I agree BFM. Pimps would become a thing of the past at long last. Who knows maybe prostitutes would unionize and really get some good benefits and a secure working environment. It’s all progress!

  17. I wonder if Pogo realizes that legalized prostitution would of course include all legal forms of sex, gay straight, all highly regulated. “Sexual norms” be damned!

  18. Annie

    I like your acronym but it already takes 10 years for the FDA to approve what you put in your body.

  19. Maybe they could be inspected by the “Food, Drug and Genital Administration.”?

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