We are Prostitutes!

Kaze Araki

Libertarian Communist
Joined
Mar 3, 2011
Messages
1,821
Likes
3
Points
38
#1
Nothing divided the women activism movement more than the issue of Prostitution. While most Feminists are strongly opposed to the notion (see Carole Pateman; Sexual Contract for example), some women do find the practice as acceptable and a legitimate form of occupation. What is your take on this matter? Explains to us why Prostitution does/does not denigrate women, and why it is a legitimate/illegitimate form of occupation.

Answers must be strictly philosophical.
Spam will be deleted.
 

-lexus-

Visions of Hell
Joined
Apr 28, 2011
Messages
941
Likes
1
Points
18
#2
If it is the free choice of this female to go into prostitution, then who are we to say that she cannot do that? By saying that we are essentially denying this females ability to make up her own mind, and forcing our morals and views on this person. If freedom is one of the highest rights we have in our society then surely it must also include someones right to pick whatever she wants to do to get money.
 
Joined
May 7, 2011
Messages
2,885
Likes
5
Points
38
#3
Nothing divided the women activism movement more than the issue of Prostitution. While most Feminists are strongly opposed to the notion (see Carole Pateman; Sexual Contract for example), some women do find the practice as acceptable and a legitimate form of occupation. What is your take on this matter? Explains to us why Prostitution does/does not denigrate women, and why it is a legitimate/illegitimate form of occupation.
I don't think I'm in a position to judge whether or not sex work is denigrating and illegitimate. The people who I would like to hear comment about whether or not that is true are sex workers themselves, and it seems unlikely that they all feel the same way about it. Below is an open letter written by a sex worker in Australia that outlines the importance of listening to what one sex worker has to say, and emphasizes that sex workers are not all the same.

http://feminaust.org/2011/08/20/ope...ists-concerned-about-sex-worker-exploitation/

Anyway...apologies for my simplistic view :/
 

Kaze Araki

Libertarian Communist
Joined
Mar 3, 2011
Messages
1,821
Likes
3
Points
38
#4
Actually, you're not presenting your view at all.
What you did is just linking us to other people's view.
Furthermore, what is your justification that only sex workers can make such judgement?
If anything, not only that you should - this thread force you present your own view cogently.
 
Joined
May 7, 2011
Messages
2,885
Likes
5
Points
38
#5
Actually, you're not presenting your view at all.
The original post was presented in a binary way that seemed to urge responses either condemning or supporting prostitution. My view on prostitution and sex work in general doesn’t involve deciding whether it’s right or wrong.

Furthermore, what is your justification that only sex workers can make such judgement?
I didn’t say that only sex workers can make such judgment, only that I would like to hear what they have to say and I think doing so is important, since they are often marginalized in a discourse where they should be afforded a greater presence and respect. I don’t mean to discount or ignore what non sex workers have to say.

If anything, not only that you should - this thread force you present your own view cogently.
I suppose I was trying to move beyond the right/wrong approach to sex work with my first post. Clearly it does not follow the instruction in the OP, so I’ll go ahead and delete it if you want me to. [MENTION=45]Kaze Araki[/MENTION]
 

Arachna

Spider
Staff member
Joined
Jun 12, 2011
Messages
1,831
Likes
5
Points
38
#6
Nah. Don't delete it Moi,dear. I think i can see your point. You are trying to say it should not matter if someone is a sex worker. And that people are judged badly cos of that occupation.

Personally i don't have anything against prostitution. Everyone have needs. I understand that. It is also “world's oldest profession.” If i am not mistaken. Sex, ordinarily occurs between two people who know and like each other, who are attractive to each other and who have at least a modicum of affection for one another.Any affection in the equation is replaced by an exchange of money. Like fetching a newspaper from the local shop. It is an industry. But i don't know if my opinion would change if someone i love and am marryed to is visiting a "Sex worker". Maybe not. And maybe it would.
 
Joined
Sep 26, 2011
Messages
218
Likes
8
Points
18
#7
Well, what Kaze is asking for, essentially, is not an opinion, but an argument. I don't mean to speak for Kaze (Correct me if I'm wrong, man)

Sure, sex workers are often denigrated and abused and looked down upon by the rest of society, and that is hurtful and a very regrettable thing, considering that many sex workers are already in a pretty bad situation. However, the denigration/abuse suffered by prostitutes, is in no way, an argument for whether or not prostitution is inherently allowable or denigrating in of itself.

When thinking of the idea of prostitution, I feel a certain innate revulsion. . . the same revulsion that I might feel when I think about heroine abuse.

That said, I support the freedom of women to sell their "services" just the same as I would support a carpenter sell his "services". Let us pretend (in a parallel universe) that carpentry becomes a very dangerous profession that greatly shortens the lifespan of carpenters and causes them great harm. I would not command a carpenter not to work in that profession, despite the dangers, because that is his natural choice.

Yes, if carpentry is dangerous and dirty work in this parallel universe, I bet many of the carpenters would be disadvantaged individuals the "poor downcasts" and "runaways" of our society, but banning the practice of carpentry would just lead to illegal carpentry (much more dangerous) and these souls would still be destitute anyhow and resort to even more denigrating work (probably even more impoverished).

So yes, I would view prostitution in the capitalistic sense. Sex is a service. Like all services, it can be bought and bartered. How much money would it take for you to have sex with someone? One-hundred bucks? One-thousand? Ten-thousand? A million?

Is prostitution denigrating? Definitely. Sexuality is, in a great sense, a reflection of a woman's worth in modern society. So for a woman to sell her sexual favors is a great stain by the definitions of this culture. But many different forms of work are denigrating, and we would not ban coal mining, for example.

Should it be illegal? No. Making this practice illegal has been as ineffective as the banning of alcohol during the prohibition. As Arachna has said, it's the world's "oldest profession" for a reason. It will happen. Look at "escort services" for example. When loopholes are needed they will appear. And by making prostitution illegal, we are not stopping prostitution, we are just making prostitutes criminals, which denigrates them even further.
 

Kaze Araki

Libertarian Communist
Joined
Mar 3, 2011
Messages
1,821
Likes
3
Points
38
#8
The original post was presented in a binary way that seemed to urge responses either condemning or supporting prostitution. My view on prostitution and sex work in general doesn’t involve deciding whether it’s right or wrong.
And what is your view? Are we suppose to play guessing game here? The questions were presented very clearly:
Explains to us why Prostitution does/does not denigrate women, and why it is a legitimate/illegitimate form of occupation.
If your view are beyond the above two options, then by all means please explains them to us. For example; you don't believe Prostitution is/is not denigrating women, but instead - Prostitution is a massive super Black Hole at the center of the milky way. There, as simple as that.

I didn’t say that only sex workers can make such judgment, only that I would like to hear what they have to say and I think doing so is important, since they are often marginalized in a discourse where they should be afforded a greater presence and respect. I don’t mean to discount or ignore what non sex workers have to say.
I'm asking you to present your argument, not linking us to other people's emotional appeal.

I suppose I was trying to move beyond the right/wrong approach to sex work with my first post. Clearly it does not follow the instruction in the OP, so I’ll go ahead and delete it if you want me to. @Kaze Araki
For the third time, I am asking you to present your view, not delete your post.
If Prostitution is beyond right/wrong, then show us what you mean.
What is your take on the matter? Is Prostitution an alien from outer space, big foot or flying spaghetti monster?
Again, give us a cogent explanation.
Look at Lexus and Btmangan posts for example.
 

Arachna

Spider
Staff member
Joined
Jun 12, 2011
Messages
1,831
Likes
5
Points
38
#9
So yes, I would view prostitution in the capitalistic sense. Sex is a service. Like all services, it can be bought and bartered. How much money would it take for you to have sex with someone? One-hundred bucks? One-thousand? Ten-thousand? A million?
I Said the same thing. :shrug:

Is prostitution denigrating? Definitely. Sexuality is, in a great sense, a reflection of a woman's worth in modern society. So for a woman to sell her sexual favors is a great stain by the definitions of this culture. But many different forms of work are denigrating, and we would not ban coal mining, for example.
Selling drugs/ being a dealer is cool. or being a pimp is cool. But selling your body is denigrating.It is true. But i also find it as not fair.

Should it be illegal? No. Making this practice illegal has been as ineffective as the banning of alcohol during the prohibition. As Arachna has said, it's the world's "oldest profession" for a reason. It will happen. Look at "escort services" for example. When loopholes are needed they will appear. And by making prostitution illegal, we are not stopping prostitution, we are just making prostitutes criminals, which denigrates them even further.
True. Just look at Netherlands.

"full consent to exploitation of the self."

Prostitution is legal in the Netherlands, and has been defined as a form of work. 18 is the minimum age to work in the sex industry.
 
Joined
Sep 26, 2011
Messages
218
Likes
8
Points
18
#10


I Said the same thing. :shrug:
True, but I didn't like your justification of it. I though it needed some stronger support for the premises so I did that.

You have a habit of going straight to conclusions and skipping the premises, Ara. :p

Still, you did put the idea down first. Apologies for not quoting it ;)
 

-lexus-

Visions of Hell
Joined
Apr 28, 2011
Messages
941
Likes
1
Points
18
#11

True. Just look at Netherlands.

"full consent to exploitation of the self."

Prostitution is legal in the Netherlands, and has been defined as a form of work. 18 is the minimum age to work in the sex industry.
Yes, however, that doesnt mean we dont have illegal prostitutes working here. Legalizing prostitution only helps a bit.
 
Joined
Oct 3, 2011
Messages
32
Likes
0
Points
6
#12
I'm sure some if you might know me (*grins* I'm inescapable) I spotted a traitor on here and had to take appropriate measures *cough* and saw this and thought I would throw my 2 cents in :)

I dont know where the op got the "most" figure opposing prostitution... I would say that's a little but of an exaggeration. When it comes to modern feminism but really the main form that is opposed to it in a moral sense and male oppression is radical feminism. Marxist and social feminism are opposed to it as well but for a different reason; to sum it up, not male oppression but as a result of socioeconomic and class oppression (though they advocate for social structure change/ end to capitalism, and do not believe in the criminalization of it.)

However sex positive feminism, different forms of liberal feminism and existentialist feminism do not have qualms with prostitution as a profession and find it liberating to different extents. The woman has the right to control her own sexuality, which includes the right to use her sexual capacities to make a living.

Though the position of the above is taken with a bit of caution by some. And which is my view point in this, that there is a ring of truth with socialist and Marxist feminism. Many women are forced into prostitution be it coercion, trafficking, as a last resort of economics etc. However I see the reason for this is that we delegitimize prostitution and throw it to the fringes of society, thus leaving it open for it's seedy aspects. It's not the opposition of sex work in itself but the stigmatization of it.

By legalizing we give it legitimacy and open the doors for a more positive work environment. It opens it up for regulation which can give the upper hand and more control to the women. It also begins to weed out the abuse, violence and oppression that thrived because of delegitimization. Ie, it becomes more of a choice for women.

As Kamala Kempadoo would argue; By conceptualizing prostitution as a form of labor and avoiding moralistic discourses about sexuality, feminists can avoid unrealistic abolitionist approaches. Instead, they can address the problems of prostitution in terms of working conditions and worker empowerment, the legal status of the work, and the occupational alternatives available to people oppressed by race, class, gender, and nationality.

And we can't forget about all the male prostitutes out there ;)

On a side note there was a recent demonstration in South Korea that gathered 1600 sex workers to protest the toughened prostitution laws and recent crack downs.
 

Kaze Araki

Libertarian Communist
Joined
Mar 3, 2011
Messages
1,821
Likes
3
Points
38
#13
This is quite a pleasing surprise.
And I'm still banned till the 10th of this month.

BTW, should I finally give you my Anarchistic point of view here?
 

-lexus-

Visions of Hell
Joined
Apr 28, 2011
Messages
941
Likes
1
Points
18
#14
By legalizing we give it legitimacy and open the doors for a more positive work environment. It opens it up for regulation which can give the upper hand and more control to the women. It also begins to weed out the abuse, violence and oppression that thrived because of delegitimization. Ie, it becomes more of a choice for women.
Again, make no mistake, legalizing it will help a bit when it comes to the protection of women, but only a bit. There is still a huge market for cheap prostitutes, prostitutes below the legal age, prostitutes that do stuff most women dont want to do, etc. Nor does it prevent pimps from taking advantage of these women.
 

Arachna

Spider
Staff member
Joined
Jun 12, 2011
Messages
1,831
Likes
5
Points
38
#15
Yes, however, that doesnt mean we dont have illegal prostitutes working here. Legalizing prostitution only helps a bit.
I did not say it is illegal. And yer i know. Is it true 80% of them is from different countrys? I would not know if that fact is true or not. So i am asking.I seriously wanna see the window/ shop thingy. With sex worker inside. <.<


I'm sure some if you might know me (*grins* I'm inescapable) I spotted a traitor on here and had to take appropriate measures *cough* and saw this and thought I would throw my 2 cents in :)

I dont know where the op got the "most" figure opposing prostitution... I would say that's a little but of an exaggeration. When it comes to modern feminism but really the main form that is opposed to it in a moral sense and male oppression is radical feminism. Marxist and social feminism are opposed to it as well but for a different reason; to sum it up, not male oppression but as a result of socioeconomic and class oppression (though they advocate for social structure change/ end to capitalism, and do not believe in the criminalization of it.)

However sex positive feminism, different forms of liberal feminism and existentialist feminism do not have qualms with prostitution as a profession and find it liberating to different extents. The woman has the right to control her own sexuality, which includes the right to use her sexual capacities to make a living.

Though the position of the above is taken with a bit of caution by some. And which is my view point in this, that there is a ring of truth with socialist and Marxist feminism. Many women are forced into prostitution be it coercion, trafficking, as a last resort of economics etc. However I see the reason for this is that we delegitimize prostitution and throw it to the fringes of society, thus leaving it open for it's seedy aspects. It's not the opposition of sex work in itself but the stigmatization of it.

By legalizing we give it legitimacy and open the doors for a more positive work environment. It opens it up for regulation which can give the upper hand and more control to the women. It also begins to weed out the abuse, violence and oppression that thrived because of delegitimization. Ie, it becomes more of a choice for women.

As Kamala Kempadoo would argue; By conceptualizing prostitution as a form of labor and avoiding moralistic discourses about sexuality, feminists can avoid unrealistic abolitionist approaches. Instead, they can address the problems of prostitution in terms of working conditions and worker empowerment, the legal status of the work, and the occupational alternatives available to people oppressed by race, class, gender, and nationality.

And we can't forget about all the male prostitutes out there ;)

On a side note there was a recent demonstration in South Korea that gathered 1600 sex workers to protest the toughened prostitution laws and recent crack downs.
Radical feminism opposes prostitution on the grounds that it degrades women and furthers the power politics of the male gender. Feminists seek to be supportive of sex workers while deploring the work itself as inherently wrong.

In liberal feminism, prostitution is conceived of in the contractrarian sense of being a private business transaction.

Five have expressed strong views on the issue of prostitution, namely: Marxist feminism, liberal feminism, existentialist feminism, socialist feminism, and radical feminism.

Liberal feminists believe that personal “rights” should predominate over concerns for the social good. This political view goes back to the early feminism of John Stuart Mill. So if we take that as basis there is no point in talking about Prostitution as "women's right". but "rights" for all.

Laurie Shrage makes a case for the radical feminist perspective when she says “female prostitution oppresses women, not because some women who participate in it ‘suffer in the eyes of society’ but because its organized practice testifies to and perpetuates socially hegemonic beliefs which oppress all women in many domains of their lives.”
Radical feminist Kathleen Barry, in The Prostitution of Sexuality, envisions prostitution as connected to a darkened world of sex, abuse, and violence.
You should read Priscilla Alexander’s essays in Sex Work.

Again, make no mistake, legalizing it will help a bit when it comes to the protection of women, but only a bit. There is still a huge market for cheap prostitutes, prostitutes below the legal age, prostitutes that do stuff most women dont want to do, etc. Nor does it prevent pimps from taking advantage of these women.
Trafficing?
 

Kaze Araki

Libertarian Communist
Joined
Mar 3, 2011
Messages
1,821
Likes
3
Points
38
#16
Nor does the Anarchists view prostitution as liberating, rather it is an outright denigration.
When a woman sold her body for a price to men, she is basically presenting herself as a sex object but with a price tag put on her.
Because that is basically the reason why a man pay a prostitute - to have sex.
Thereof, the pseudo-feminists liberal that support prostitution is basically against the very essence of feminism itself.
 
Joined
Oct 3, 2011
Messages
32
Likes
0
Points
6
#17
Again, make no mistake, legalizing it will help a bit when it comes to the protection of women, but only a bit. There is still a huge market for cheap prostitutes, prostitutes below the legal age, prostitutes that do stuff most women dont want to do, etc. Nor does it prevent pimps from taking advantage of these women.
Did I claim that with legalization those problems wouldn't exist? It will begin to weed them out along with the issues of discrimination of the application of the law that properuates those issues.
Nor does the Anarchists view prostitution as liberating, rather it is an outright denigration.
When a woman sold her body for a price to men, she is basically presenting herself as a sex object but with a price tag put on her.
Because that is basically the reason why a man pay a prostitute - to have sex.
With that view, is it also not objectification of men to use a natural instinct (turing that instinct into profit) to take advantage for [a woman's] personal gain? In a capitalistic society then that would apply to any service related job. In a factory you are selling your physical being to be used as a labor machine. In child care, you are selling your love and affection as an object. * Why is it that you put sex on a different pedestal than others? While yes, some would claim that any form of objectification of your being for a price is oppression, there are others that will claim it is liberation by taking advantage of the capitalistic system we are put in and choosing to who and how you use yourself to make a profit.*
Thereof, the pseudo-feminists liberal that support prostitution is basically against the very essence of feminism itself.
Though the basic goal of feminism is liberation (very generally speaking), what constitutes as that is subjective. So how do you claim any other form of feminism other than the one you presented is pseudo feminism?*
 

-lexus-

Visions of Hell
Joined
Apr 28, 2011
Messages
941
Likes
1
Points
18
#18


I did not say it is illegal. And yer i know. Is it true 80% of them is from different countrys? I would not know if that fact is true or not. So i am asking.I seriously wanna see the window/ shop thingy. With sex worker inside. <.<

Trafficing?
Ah yeah, most are from East Europe of Suriname or something like that. Only a small percentage is actually native Dutch, although I wouldnt know the exact numbers.

And if you want to see that you gotta hurry. Our mental hospital that we call the government has decided in its utter stupidity that we need to close down coffeeshops and the red light districts.
 

Kaze Araki

Libertarian Communist
Joined
Mar 3, 2011
Messages
1,821
Likes
3
Points
38
#19
With that view, is it also not objectification of men to use a natural instinct (turing that instinct into profit) to take advantage for [a woman's] personal gain? In a capitalistic society then that would apply to any service related job. In a factory you are selling your physical being to be used as a labor machine. In child care, you are selling your love and affection as an object. * Why is it that you put sex on a different pedestal than others? While yes, some would claim that any form of objectification of your being for a price is oppression, there are others that will claim it is liberation by taking advantage of the capitalistic system we are put in and choosing to who and how you use yourself to make a profit.*

Though the basic goal of feminism is liberation (very generally speaking), what constitutes as that is subjective. So how do you claim any other form of feminism other than the one you presented is pseudo feminism?*
In the legitimate labor sectors, you used either your strength or your skill for exchanges with capital.
In prostitution rings, you used your body as sex object.
 
Joined
Oct 3, 2011
Messages
32
Likes
0
Points
6
#20
In the legitimate labor sectors, you used either your strength or your skill for exchanges with capital.
In prostitution rings, you used your body as sex object.
You still fail to explain why you put sex on a pedestal versus other services where you turn other aspects of your physical and mental being into commodities. Why is it that just because it is sex, it is automatically a bad objectification? But the others are ok? Now I don't deny that in many cases it is in illegitimate prostitution rings... But when a women voluntary and legitimately chooses to sell sex, why is it that you still reduce her to an unliberated and denigrated object despite her choices, her reasonings and her feelings in the matter? (I see this as not giving women enough credit... To reduce her without taking the full picture into account) What constitutes as sexual objectification is in fact not objective and many views vary widely on this matter. In fact many take to the point that some forms of objectification can take on a benign and sometimes even positives roles in a person's life.

And why is it that sex cannot be considered a skill? If a woman chooses to hone her sexuality to benefit her in multiple ways, why is that not considered a skill, but let's say a woman honing her nurturing side to benefit in earning money from child care is considered a skill? And the fact that many prostitutes specialize in certain areas. Let's say a women finds she enjoys being a dominatrix and builds her skills in bondage, or a woman who might just enjoy sex overall and hones her skills on how to give herself and her partner the best pleasure. There are reasons why some prostitutes have repeat and loyal clientele. And you have to remember that it's not always just about the act of sex itself but also that some seek the entire experience of intimacy and connection.

If you want to argue that a woman who voluntarily chooses to sell sex is wrongly objectified because she has in your one dimensional view been reduced to only a "sex object" you have to argue the man paying for the service has been objectified as well because his sexual desires have been reduced to a tool for the woman's gratification whether it be sexual pleasure, financial satisfaction, or many times both.

By saying that sex in this form is inherently wrong and must always be taken as so, you also propitiate *the negative stigma attached to it, which in turn actually reaffirms the social idea that women are (and can be) only there as an object to satisfy men. It takes away the power of how a women views and uses her own sexuality with automatic negative objectification and denounces the idea that it is possible to be a positive and pleasurable engagement for both parties.- hence encourages the idea that it is only beneficial to the men where the woman must lose out.