(Chuck Muth) – Ever build a snowman? You start with a small snowball you can hold in the palm of your hand. Then you roll it in the snow until it becomes bigger and bigger, to the point that you can build a six-foot snowman.
Well, that’s exactly what’s happening with the idea that commercial sex between consenting adults should no longer be a jailable offense.
On May 31, 2019, Mexico City lawmakers voted 38-0 to legalize prostitution.
“It’s a first step that has to lead to regulation of sex work, to fight human trafficking and strengthen the rights of sex workers,” said Temistocles Villanueva.
Got that? They’re LEGALIZING prostitution to FIGHT trafficking.
Which makes perfect sense. Victims of actual sex trafficking are often scared to death to report their situation to authorities for fear of being arrested themselves.
But the idea of decriminalizing the world’s oldest profession isn’t just a new development in a foreign country. The snowball effect is underway here in the United States, as well.
In Washington, DC – the nation’s capital – City Councilman David Grosso introduced a bill this month that could make DC “the first U.S. city to decriminalize prostitution involving consenting adults.”
The operative words are “consenting adults.”
As Councilman Grosso pointed out, his bill “does not change any of our laws regarding coercion or exploitation, which will continue to be prohibited in the District of Columbia.”
Mexico City and Washington, DC are two cities trying to get it right. But the movement is growing even to the statewide level.
“In New York,” reported the New York Post last week, “a group of lawmakers vowed earlier this year to introduce a bill to legalize prostitution.”
“Backers of the proposed bill,” the Post noted, “said they believe that legalization would reduce sex trafficking and protect the women who rely on the industry to make a living.”
Reduce sex trafficking. Protect the women.
And that’s EXACTLY the experience of several rural Nevada counties (but not the cities of Las Vegas and Reno), which legalized brothels almost 50 years ago.
The women work in a safe environment. They are required to use condoms and are tested weekly for sexually transmitted diseases – which protects the public health. Indeed, there has NEVER been a single case of HIV/AIDS in Nevada that can be traced back to a legal brothel.
And the women who work there do so voluntarily. Not only do they have to apply for a job to work in a legal Nevada brothel, they are required to be finger-printed and undergo a rigorous FBI background check.
As such, Nevada’s legal brothel industry is an unqualified success story.
But the abolitionists aren’t going quietly into that good night. They’re pitching a fit and force-feeding the public healthy doses of disinformation and Soviet-level false propaganda.
A former illegal prostitute out of Dallas, Rebekah Charleston, is all over the media these days claiming – without corroboration or verification – that she was “trafficked” by her pimp against her will in a pair of Nevada brothels.
Notably, she can’t (or won’t) tell anyone when this allegedly happened – though it appears to have been in the early 2000’s. And, to the best of my knowledge, she’s never identified her alleged pimp and trafficker.
Seems odd not to rat out the man she claims forced her into prostitution against her will, doesn’t it?
There are also no employment records of Charleston working at those brothels and none of the people working there at the time remember her. And there’s no record of her ever being issued a work card by the sheriff’s office – a license REQUIRED to work in a legal brothel.
No, we’re just supposed to take her word for it – even though she’s a convicted felon; not for prostitution, but for tax evasion and bank fraud. Oh, and admitted in the NY Post article that she would “just sit around and get high (on meth) all day.”
Yeah, very credible.
Nevertheless, “Bekah” – as she wishes to be called now – continues to throw shade on Nevada’s legal, consensual, adult commercial sex workers; claiming they aren’t happy and shouldn’t be allowed “to do what she wants.”
A claim heartily rejected by the women actually working in Nevada’s legal brothels.
“We are human beings who chose to do sex work on our own free will,” says Kiki Lover. “We get treated with respect and like family at the brothels. It’s a job just like any other job. We sell a service that all humans need.”
“I’m not ‘exploited.’ I’m not ‘trafficked.’ I’m not ‘brainwashed,’” adds Paris Love. “I don’t need to be ‘saved.’ I’ve freely chosen this line of work, which is a legal, private transaction between consenting adults.”
Exactly. As it should be.
Charleston is a born-again abolitionist-evangelist whose prohibition strategy has never worked and never will. Just look at alcohol, gaming and marijuana. As Alice Little of the Moonlite Bunny Ranch brothel notes…
“It’s ILLEGAL sex work that exploits children. It’s ILLEGAL sex work that traffics. It’s ILLEGAL sex work that sees women exploited and abused by pimps.”
Charleston’s foolish notion that criminalizing sex between consenting adults will “eliminate demand” for sex is absurd on its face. Prostitution is currently illegal everywhere else in the country. Has that diminished demand?
You’d have to be an idiot to think so.
Nevada is doing it right. Mexico City is now doing it right. Washington, DC is moving in the right direction. As are a number of other states.
The Snowman (and Woman) Cometh.
Mr. Muth is president of Citizen Outreach, a limited-government grassroots advocacy organization, and government affairs counsel to the Nevada Brothel Association