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Tag Archives: prostitution

A Rose Is A Rose Is A Rose*

for hire

The French are looking to Germany and Switzerland for sex. No, really. The French who are known for their romance and liberal sexual appetite, are turning to countries known more for precision for the messy imprecise act of love. This isn’t some sort of cultural rebellion or irony like Le Big Mac; it is instead a response to France’s laws regarding prostitution. Prostitution is legal in France, but third-party procurement is not. Ordinarily most people can go out and fetch themselves some company, but the issue here is that of the disabled. People with physical and/or mental disabilities who want to hire people for sexual interaction need to do so over the phone or through a service, which is not legal in France. The issue of disability and sex workers is becoming more (internationally) popular these days and brings up many interesting questions.

It’s not possible to discuss any of them without addressing the legalization of prostitution. It’s a bizarre law that offers little if any protection to whom it claims to protect. If we really cared about the victimization of women, men, boys & girls they wouldn’t be working the streets in the first place. And speaking of working the streets…dropping the euphemisms would be helpful as well. Using words such as; escort, surrogate, and call girl creates a meaningless hierarchy. Does the teenager working a corner deserve less protection than the 35-year old with business cards and connections? We can’t really believe that an hourly worker is less deserving than a salaried worker? So let’s start with calling it what it is: prostitution. It is what it is, and if you find it repugnant you probably should not be one or hire one.

Now back to the issue of the disabled and sex workers. If prostitution were legal we’d be done with this chat. But seeing as it’s not, and there seems to be the beginning of a disabilities movement brewing, let’s discuss. At the heart of much of the rising outcry is that disabled people are entitled to a sex life. No one would argue with that. But the giant leap from “sex life” to paying for the sex life is worth noting. The underlying sentiment is that the only way for a disabled person to have sex is to purchase it. This is not only inaccurate but also a bit frightening. Who is determining this? How physically or mentally disabled does one have to be to forgo any chance of a romantic relationship? What is the cut-of? Does a woman who thinks she’s too big qualify? What of a man who considers himself too small? What about those with speech impediments, scars, skin diseases, disfigurements?

It’s not that much of a leap that legalized prostitution will go the way of legalized marijuana. With the right connections/doctors some people will be able to avail themselves of something, which is illegal to others. If you believe that this path is the one of least resistance to get these laws off the books than this is good news. If you believe that making judgements of people’s worthiness is nasty business, than it’s not. All men are created equal. Searching for exceptions or classifying groups is something we do when we cannot embrace the enormity of that concept.

*Gertrude Stein

 
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Posted by on July 5, 2013 in Cultural Critique, Well-Being

 

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It’s A Bird, It’s A Plane, It’s Super-ego!

State Troopers are being investigated for frequenting prostitutes.  A second wave of Secret Service agents (engaging in the same recreation) has come to light.  John Edwards’ trial is now in full swing (with charges revolving around an adulterous affair and cover-up.)  Since January, eight public school employees have been accused of inappropriate behavior.  Recently more photos of soldiers humiliating “the enemy” have been brought to light.

No, I don’t think we’re headed towards a fiery spiral of demise, but I do find it interesting.  It’s safe to say that the vast majority of the cited (above) indiscretions have been made by men in power.  Certainly men in power behaving as if, well, as if they’re in power, is nothing new.  Many of these men occupy rather insular environs.  The military is the mother of all insulation, with law enforcement being a close runner-up.  Anyone who has ever been in a public school (as a child or adult) can attest to the “alternate universe” quality.  And politicians?  The ubiquity of the joke about elected officials not knowing the price of a gallon of milk, tells a story, doesn’t it.  They all work in a parochial world.

Clearly there is a certain lulling into entitlement that goes with this territory.  The risks seem diminished when you believe you are special.  But what is increasingly baffling is the fact that these people do live in the same universe as the rest of us.  Even the most sequestered and protected has heard of photographs!  They may have even heard of the internet (gasp!)  In this day and age, how does anyone go through life not knowing they’re being watched?!  When you add bad, sinister and/or illegal behavior to the mix, shouldn’t that just heighten any awareness/paranoia?  Is there anyone who is arrogant enough to believe they actually have a cloak of invisibility?  I don’t think so.

Something else is afoot.  Unless one is building a career on bad behavior (insert D list starlet name) most people do not engage in nefarious behavior with the hope of exposure.  It is more likely that, like the child sneaking a cookie, they simply want the cookie.  Understanding repercussions comes with maturity, and for some, never at all.  Certainly there are personality disorders whose hallmarks are not being able to process beyond the moment.  But then there’s everyone else who simply wants what they want when they want it.  Everyone and everything else be damned.  Unfortunately the damned in these cases, include children, and national security.

 
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Posted by on April 27, 2012 in Cultural Critique

 

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