Archive for February 12th, 2011

No, Time, thou shalt not boast that I do change. –  William Shakespeare, Sonnet 123

As so often happens, a number of stories have come up recently which remind me of past columns; this time there were so many that I’ve divided them up into two parts.

Cops and Condoms (August 6th)

I’ve written on a number of occasions about the self-destructive male aversion to condoms and the absolute necessity for vigilance on whores’ part to prevent clients from pulling some sneaky trick to get inside a girl “bareback”.  I’ve also pointed out that even most streetwalkers are scrupulous about condom use.  This story published on the Fox News website on February 2nd (thanks to regular reader Joyce for the link!) illustrates the reason why clients and hookers both should insist on proper protection:

A 45-year-old Denver woman was arrested Tuesday [February 1st] and accused of knowingly spreading HIV while allegedly working as a prostitute…prosecutors say Frances Woodke — who has known for years that she is HIV positive — offered sex to an undercover police officer for $23.  Woodke is being charged with two misdemeanors — prostitution and solicitation for prostitution — and a felony count of prostitution with knowledge of AIDS…the woman has pleaded guilty twice before to attempted prostitution with knowledge of AIDS — spending time in prison for the charges in 2000 and again in 2008, according to the Denver district attorney’s office.  “It’s going to be difficult for us on the law enforcement side to identify people she put at risk — if there are people she put at risk,” said Lynn Kimbrough, a spokeswoman for the Denver district attorney’s office.

What the DA’s spokeswoman is alluding to in the last sentence is that we don’t know that Woodke ever offered any of her clients unprotected sex; she may not have.  But I think it should be obvious that any whore desperate enough to offer her services for pocket change would probably find the lure of extra money for “bareback” irresistible if any man were insane enough to make such an offer.  And though the chance of female to male HIV transmission via intercourse isn’t all that high, the chance does exist and such a careless man, if infected, would then be free to carry HIV to any other girl he hired.  Girls, never go “bareback” with a man to whom you aren’t deeply committed no matter how generous the offer (if you’re a professional) or how much you “love” him (if you’re an amateur).  And guys, please think with the big head when seeing hookers and insist on protection yourself – and if your date offers unprotected intercourse, RUN!

Election Day (November 2nd)

If Kristin Davis had managed a miracle she be Governor of New York right now, but alas, she didn’t get enough votes even to keep her Anti-Prohibition Party alive.  And though she can restart the party later by petition, this article which appeared in the New York Daily News last Tuesday (February 8th) tells us what she’s doing in the meantime…and it sounds fishy:

Kristin Davis…plans to use her notoriety to help victims of sex trafficking.  She’s starting a nonprofit called Hope House to provide shelter and social services for women in need.  Before serving a four-month prison term for prostitution, Davis claims to have run the highest-grossing escort service in U.S. history, supplying call girls to the likes of Eliot Spitzer.  She ran for governor last year on a platform of legalizing prostitution, pot and gambling.

Because of her prominence, she says that “hundreds” of women who have suffered in the sex industry have come to her to tell their stories and seek help.  To her dismay, she found there were few places to direct them…Hope House will offer women food, shelter, security and medical care, ranging from HIV testing to drug treatment and psychiatric counseling, Davis says.  Her plan is to open the full-scale shelter by 2013.  She says a 24-hour emergency help line, similar to suicide hotlines, should be up within the next few months.  Ultimately, Davis hopes to build the organization into something larger and more ambitious…

…Will people be surprised to see an advocate for legal prostitution crusading against its evils?  They shouldn’t be, according to Davis.  She says her critics “don’t understand the disparity between a woman who chooses to work and women who have been forced.”  Her old agency represented what she calls the “‘Pretty Woman’-ish,” professionalized side of the sex trade — a slice she says accounts for “5% of the world of prostitution…I never forced a girl to do anything,” she explains. “It’s a completely different business model.”

Kristin, Kristin, Kristin.  I understand you have a need to reinvent yourself, and your idea of a charity to help coerced girls appears to be a noble one.  But you know damned well that there aren’t enough trafficked girls to support anything “larger and more ambitious” than a shelter; maybe if you extend your help to subsistence level hookers, drug addicts and teenage runaways selling sex to survive you might have something.  Please, don’t feed the trafficking hysteria by requiring whores to claim they’ve been “trafficked” or coerced in order to earn your help; just needing help should be enough, even if that need was the result of a girl’s own poor choices.  And finally, don’t throw the rest of us under the bus with idiotic exaggerations; 5%?  You know damned well it’s about 60%, so let’s not launch yet another deception-fueled “rescue” organization when you could do something real and good.

Harm Reduction (January 13th)

In this column I talked about the principle of harm reduction, which holds that because humanity is not perfectible laws which attempt to eradicate vices are not only doomed to fail, but actually create worse evils.  Early Christian thinkers understood this and obviously Reverend Paul Turp does as well, as reported in this story published in The Independent on January 30th:

…Reverend Paul Turp – the inspiration for Father Adam Smallbone in the BBC comedy Rev…this weekend strongly criticised a London council for attempting to “impose a moral code” on residents and visitors by outlawing lap dancing, sex shops and adult cinemas in the area.  Hackney council voted last week for what it called a “nil” policy, banning any new strip venues from opening and holding out the likelihood that four existing clubs will lose their licences as they come up for renewal.  The policy was approved despite more than 66 per cent of people who took part in a public consultation on the plans saying “no” to the ban.

Reverend Turp…said he was “hugely disappointed” with the decision, adding that it will “push the business underground, resulting in more women working dangerously on the streets” and will add to the people who turn to his church for help.  The clergyman, who provides refuge for 17 homeless people, as well as caring for alcoholics, addicts and prostitutes, said: “The council have created a problem where there wasn’t one to begin with.  They deliberately disregarded the views of the people.”

The local authority’s clampdown on strip clubs derives from the 2010 Policing and Crime Act, which gives councils greater authority in the licensing of strip clubs…[and] removes sex establishments’ rights of appeal if licence renewal is refused.  Bill Parry-Davies, a solicitor who is representing two of the existing clubs, said the local authority had abused its powers and plans further legal moves to challenge the ban:  “Hackney’s policy seems ideologically driven, regardless of its consequences in the real world.  It’s regressive.  People fought to protect women by introducing licensing.  The courts will want to look very closely at a policy which seeks to deny a licensee’s right of appeal and the courts’ jurisdiction in such a manner.”

…Mr Turp warned that, unless overturned legally, the policy was likely to lead to danger for strip club workers and disruption for members of the public:  “A wretched mistake has been made.  Hackney 30 years ago was a very dodgy place.  I remember the struggle to get these places licensed.  Now they are well run and safe.”

Maybe we need to get the Reverend Turp to do a lecture tour in the States; perhaps some self-professed “conservative” politicians would be more inclined to listen to common sense if it came from a clergyman.

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