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Should prostitution be legal?

disneydude

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Wondering what your thoughts and arguments are.

Personally, I think that prostitution should be legal for the following reasons:

1. As long as the act involves two consenting adults who are we to say what you can and cannot do with your own body.

2. In a sense we are all prostituting ourselves. If you are a dishwasher, you are offering your time and labor to wash dishes, etc. Why should it be illegal to engage in sex for money?

3. It cannot be based on "morals". What is immoral to some is not immoral to others. Laws cannot be based on one person's moral beliefs.

4. It could be regulated which would combat health concerns.

Come on....face it.....its the world's oldest profession. As long as both parties are willing participants and negotiate an exchange of an act for a fee (isn't that what capitalism is all about?), we should stay out of it.

Of course, if someone is having sex in a car parked in a neighborhood or in an alley in view of children etc, that could still be punished. What I am talking about is PRIVATE consensual sex for a fee.
 

Deegan

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disneydude said:
Wondering what your thoughts and arguments are.

Personally, I think that prostitution should be legal for the following reasons:

1. As long as the act involves two consenting adults who are we to say what you can and cannot do with your own body.

2. In a sense we are all prostituting ourselves. If you are a dishwasher, you are offering your time and labor to wash dishes, etc. Why should it be illegal to engage in sex for money?

3. It cannot be based on "morals". What is immoral to some is not immoral to others. Laws cannot be based on one person's moral beliefs.

4. It could be regulated which would combat health concerns.

Come on....face it.....its the world's oldest profession. As long as both parties are willing participants and negotiate an exchange of an act for a fee (isn't that what capitalism is all about?), we should stay out of it.

Of course, if someone is having sex in a car parked in a neighborhood or in an alley in view of children etc, that could still be punished. What I am talking about is PRIVATE consensual sex for a fee.
Sounds like you need to get laid my friend, good luck with that!;)

It is legal in some places, and that's o.k by me. If someone wants to pimp themselves out, that is their right, I just don't want a whore house on every corner, kinda takes the skill out of getting it for free.:cool:
 

Korimyr the Rat

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disneydude said:
Wondering what your thoughts and arguments are.
I think prostitution is a despicable practice which feeds on despair, poverty, and moral dissolution. If it were possible to effectively abolish it through government action, I would support doing so.

Unfortunately, I think it is plainly evident that it is not possible to do so, at least not by following our current policies. I think we could more easily solve most of the problem with prostitution by improving the social safety net and by doing something productive to lower drug use.

disneydude said:
1. As long as the act involves two consenting adults who are we to say what you can and cannot do with your own body.
Well, in the first place, the majority of prostitutes are not consenting adults; the majority of them are minors, and many prostitutes are not willing. The entire profession is rife with coercion, fraud, and assault. The problem is, when we arrest a prostitute, we release them back into the same situation (minus fines, which they have to "work" twice as hard to compensate) instead of putting them through rehab and relocating them away from their pimps.

Two, the involvement of currency exchange changes the equation. Noone is trying to prevent anyone from having sex-- however, there are a number of voluntary financial exchanges that our government regulates. Unless you are an extreme Libertarian, you support the idea that the government has a legitimate role in this. Forbidding the exchange of sex for money is a form of workplace or finance regulation; it also forms the basis of sexual harrassment laws, because if trading sexual services for money were legal, it could be assumed to be part of someone's regular job description.

disneydude said:
3. It cannot be based on "morals". What is immoral to some is not immoral to others. Laws cannot be based on one person's moral beliefs.
Okay, if morality is relative from person to person, what is the basis of your universal moral statement that it is wrong to impose those standards upon others?

In other words, if no one person's morals are better than any others, how can you say that it is wrong that my morals include forcing other people to obey them?

I might also point out that the laws are not based on any one person's moral beliefs, they are based on the moral beliefs of the majority of the population, as represented by the moral beliefs of the majority of our lawmakers.

disneydude said:
4. It could be regulated which would combat health concerns.
This is the first argument for the legalization of prostitution that I will accept. If it were regulated and licensed, we could prevent the majority of harm caused by this blight of an industry-- and when conditions were more conducive to effectively stamping it out, we could do so gradually by limiting the number of licenses issued.

disneydude said:
Come on....face it.....its the world's oldest profession.
Well, if you're going by the Bible, I'd say the world's oldest profession was hitman; surely you're not arguing for the legalization of that as well?
 

Deegan

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Korimyr the Rat said:
I think prostitution is a despicable practice which feeds on despair, poverty, and moral dissolution. If it were possible to effectively abolish it through government action, I would support doing so.

Unfortunately, I think it is plainly evident that it is not possible to do so, at least not by following our current policies. I think we could more easily solve most of the problem with prostitution by improving the social safety net and by doing something productive to lower drug use.



Well, in the first place, the majority of prostitutes are not consenting adults; the majority of them are minors, and many prostitutes are not willing. The entire profession is rife with coercion, fraud, and assault. The problem is, when we arrest a prostitute, we release them back into the same situation (minus fines, which they have to "work" twice as hard to compensate) instead of putting them through rehab and relocating them away from their pimps.

Two, the involvement of currency exchange changes the equation. Noone is trying to prevent anyone from having sex-- however, there are a number of voluntary financial exchanges that our government regulates. Unless you are an extreme Libertarian, you support the idea that the government has a legitimate role in this. Forbidding the exchange of sex for money is a form of workplace or finance regulation; it also forms the basis of sexual harrassment laws, because if trading sexual services for money were legal, it could be assumed to be part of someone's regular job description.



Okay, if morality is relative from person to person, what is the basis of your universal moral statement that it is wrong to impose those standards upon others?

In other words, if no one person's morals are better than any others, how can you say that it is wrong that my morals include forcing other people to obey them?

I might also point out that the laws are not based on any one person's moral beliefs, they are based on the moral beliefs of the majority of the population, as represented by the moral beliefs of the majority of our lawmakers.



This is the first argument for the legalization of prostitution that I will accept. If it were regulated and licensed, we could prevent the majority of harm caused by this blight of an industry-- and when conditions were more conducive to effectively stamping it out, we could do so gradually by limiting the number of licenses issued.



Well, if you're going by the Bible, I'd say the world's oldest profession was hitman; surely you're not arguing for the legalization of that as well?
Very well said my new friend, I enjoyed reading that, it was very thoughtful, intelligent, and very, very true.;)
 

George_Washington

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Korimyr the Rat said:
I think prostitution is a despicable practice which feeds on despair, poverty, and moral dissolution. If it were possible to effectively abolish it through government action, I would support doing so.

Unfortunately, I think it is plainly evident that it is not possible to do so, at least not by following our current policies. I think we could more easily solve most of the problem with prostitution by improving the social safety net and by doing something productive to lower drug use.
I think that prostitution should be legal, I disagree with conservatives on this issue. I lean more towards libertarianism on this issue.



Well, in the first place, the majority of prostitutes are not consenting adults; the majority of them are minors, and many prostitutes are not willing. The entire profession is rife with coercion, fraud, and assault. The problem is, when we arrest a prostitute, we release them back into the same situation (minus fines, which they have to "work" twice as hard to compensate) instead of putting them through rehab and relocating them away from their pimps.
Do you know for sure if most prostitutes are minors? Some people would argue that the profession wouldn't be so corrupt if we would legalize it.

Two, the involvement of currency exchange changes the equation. Noone is trying to prevent anyone from having sex-- however, there are a number of voluntary financial exchanges that our government regulates. Unless you are an extreme Libertarian, you support the idea that the government has a legitimate role in this. Forbidding the exchange of sex for money is a form of workplace or finance regulation; it also forms the basis of sexual harrassment laws, because if trading sexual services for money were legal, it could be assumed to be part of someone's regular job description.
So you're saying prostitution is the same thing as sexual harrassment?

Okay, if morality is relative from person to person, what is the basis of your universal moral statement that it is wrong to impose those standards upon others?

In other words, if no one person's morals are better than any others, how can you say that it is wrong that my morals include forcing other people to obey them?

I might also point out that the laws are not based on any one person's moral beliefs, they are based on the moral beliefs of the majority of the population, as represented by the moral beliefs of the majority of our lawmakers.
OK, I do believe there is a general and universal sense of morality but I don't think prostitution is included in that. It might be immoral from a Christian standpoint but that's a whole other debate. Anyway, it is true that laws are voted on and passed by the majority of the population and certain laws are based on morality. But in our Republic, there are limitations as to what the majority of the population can have a say in, which is why we have things like the electoral college for example. Our founding Federalist Fathers did not envision our Republic to be an absolute, "direct" democracy at the whim of the people. They wanted the country to have a commonly agreed to social code but not one that neccesarily overrides the sovereign power of the state to inforce seperate from what the people want. Many, many of Alexander Hamilton's views on government were based on this premise. Many people often confuse the voice of the majority of the population with being perfectly equivalent to the nation as a whole. But often times, this is not the case and should not be. Hamilton believed that in order to perserve a nation rather than have a city-state or a state of anarchy, the peoples' voices are spoken to our representatives but it is ultimately their decision on which laws to pass.

Therefore, saying that prostitution should be illegal because the majority of people want it to be so is a weak argument. Sadly to say, if the majority/popular voice of the people were taken to the extreme, it would errode our financial system and would ultimately lead to communism. In order for a nation to be capitalistic and to maintain private credit, popular opinion must not be too aggressive.


This is the first argument for the legalization of prostitution that I will accept. If it were regulated and licensed, we could prevent the majority of harm caused by this blight of an industry-- and when conditions were more conducive to effectively stamping it out, we could do so gradually by limiting the number of licenses issued.
Yes, possibly.
 

Korimyr the Rat

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George_Washington said:
I think that prostitution should be legal, I disagree with conservatives on this issue. I lean more towards libertarianism on this issue.
I'm willing to support legalizing it temporarily, as a stopgap measure, as long as it comes with strict regulatory controls.

I consider prostitution to be a social problem, and want to see it abolished. I just don't support criminalizing it, since that doesn't really get at the real causes-- and making it illegal triggers a knee-jerk reaction in most people to just assume that they get whatever they deserve.

The way I see it, the most effective ways to attack this problem are to cut down on the number of teen runaways, reduce drug addiction (another problem ill-suited to criminal law), and provide better programs for re-engaging people in productive work.

George_Washington said:
Do you know for sure if most prostitutes are minors?
It's well-documented. I'm looking for studies to cite now, and will edit this post if I find them before losing interest.

George_Washington said:
Some people would argue that the profession wouldn't be so corrupt if we would legalize it.
They would have a point, but we can point to the history of our own country for examples of it being both generally legal and totally corrupt. It isn't enough to legalize it; we also have to extend legal protection to the people doing it.

George_Washington said:
So you're saying prostitution is the same thing as sexual harrassment?
No, merely that if it is legal to pay people for sex, it could easily be considered a condition for employment; it would enable sexual harrassment.

George_Washington said:
OK, I do believe there is a general and universal sense of morality but I don't think prostitution is included in that.
Considering the sheer degradation implied by the word "whore", I have to disagree with you.

George_Washington said:
Our founding Federalist Fathers did not envision our Republic to be an absolute, "direct" democracy at the whim of the people.
I maintain the position that Constitutional limits on democracy were not designed to prevent the imposition of moral values, but to make it a slower and more difficult process-- to keep the laws relatively stable and to keep people from being oppressed at whim.

There's a difference between laws born out of mass hysteria and the overall moral consensus of the nation.
 
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