I support sex workers because I was one…it’s a job that’s needlessly shunned by society when frankly we should be worshiped. – Margaret Cho
Where Are the Protests?
Note that absolutely none of the “human trafficking” cases mentioned in this story involve prostitution:
…the West Midlands branch of Hope for Justice has rescued 82 people so far this year. Many of those were unknown to police…few cases of modern slavery have gone through the criminal justice system. Only 130 cases that involved human trafficking were successfully prosecuted in 2014-15, representing just one prosecution for every 100…victims [claimed by fetishists]…
That last statement is roughly equivalent to my claiming to be a millionaire, but the bank will only let me have 1% of my money.
A website which purported to connect students with internships in every industry functioned in that manner for five years, from June of 2010. But at some point after August 1st of this year, the site was taken over by some sort of scammer who planned to use it to exploit wannabe sex workers by offering to “teach them the trade” via an “internship program”. In other words, a crooked escort service or group of services was trying to trick newbie whores into working for them for free. Once the sex worker community got ahold of the link and started tweeting it around, the site vanished at some point in the last few days.
The More the Better
She’s been all over Twitter since, interacting with and following outspoken sex workers:
Margaret Cho…opened up about her former life as a sex worker to her thousands of Twitter followers Thursday, saying of herself and her fellow sex workers: “we were tough and proud…Sex work is simply work. For me it was honest work. I was a sex worker when I was young. It was hard but well paid. There’s no shame in it”…
[Connecticut] resident Timothy T. Cutcher denies having sex with dogs or any of his relatives. However, the 23-year-old man told the Reflector it’s true he’s addicted to sex…Cutcher said he’s “borderline mentally disabled”…
No, it isn’t true, because there is no such thing as “sex addiction”.
Above the Law
A few hundred down, tens of thousands to go:
…In a yearlong investigation of sexual misconduct by U.S. law enforcement, The Associated Press uncovered about 1,000 officers who lost their badges in a six-year period for rape, sodomy and other sexual assault; sex crimes that included possession of child pornography; or sexual misconduct such as propositioning citizens or having consensual but prohibited on-duty intercourse. The number is unquestionably an undercount because it represents only those officers whose licenses to work in law enforcement were revoked, and not all states take such action. California and New York — with several of the nation’s largest law enforcement agencies — offered no records because they have no statewide system to decertify officers for misconduct. And even among states that provided records, some reported no officers removed for sexual misdeeds even though cases were identified via news stories or court records…
Alison Bass on the yellow journalism which permeates coverage of sex work:
When it comes to the coverage of sex work or trafficking, the mainstream media seems to forget a basic journalistic principle — the need to get their facts straight…anti-trafficking groups have spread grossly inaccurate and inflated statistics about the number of women and children being trafficked for paid sex in the United States…[Gloria] Steinem…points to the Nordic Model “as being the only system that seems to work for women in the trade.” In fact, the opposite is true…sex workers themselves say that the…decriminalized model that New Zealand adopted in 2003 is a much more successful approach…why [do] otherwise respectable media drop their journalistic standards when reporting on the sex trade…Is it because they’re so desperate to be politically correct…or is it because the mere mention of women’s sexuality sends normally methodical journalists into a tizzy of sensationalistic misinformation?…
The Lion and the Ox
As I predicted almost 4 year ago, we’ve now reached the point where a mainstream publication can feature an article like this:
…”Trafficking”…is less a clear-cut crime than a call to moral panic. The vagueness of the definition allows or even encourages governments, organizations, and researchers to claim that there are tens of millions of trafficking victims worldwide on the basis of little more than hyperbolic guesses…the term “sex trafficking”…seems to have been developed by anti-prostitution feminists in the 1990s…to describe the migration of women from the collapsing Soviet Union to the United States…Obama also uses the term to refer to children pressed into military service and agricultural laborers forced to work under poor conditions or without pay…the term…often is used to refer to cases in which there is no migration at all…in practice, trafficking does not mean “modern-day slavery.” Nor does it mean being transported across borders for purposes of sexual exploitation. Instead, it usually refers to one or more of the following: being underage and selling sex; illegally immigrating; being subjected to any kind of forced labor or abusive labor practices; engaging in consensual sex work…
The author of this piece fails to link the relevant statistics, so even though what he’s saying is generally true in essence, there’s no way to know if the correlation is as close and unmistakable as is claimed here:
…In October of 2014 the Seattle police department implemented the “Buyer Beware” program…he rate of rape shot up 150% compared to October 2013. November 2014 the rate of rape shot up 225% compared to November 2013. December 2014 the rate of rape shot up 80% compared to December 2013. Statistics for 2015 are not yet available…The rape rate from January 2013 to September 2013 compared to the rape rate from January 2014 to September 2014 were nearly identical with the rate in 2014 being up a slight 4% for the nine month period. Once the “Buyer Beware” program was implemented in October and the correlating jump in rape for the final three months of 2014, the final three months of 2014 compared to the final three months of 2013, the rape rate was up 151%. That brought the year over year rate up 28%…
Coming and Going (#335)
Here’s a long, thorough look at Kathryn Griffin and her “prostitution diversion” scam in Houston:
…Griffin is currently under fire from sex worker and human rights advocates who say her tough-love, one-size-fits-all approach is flawed and fails to respect basic human dignity. People who are arrested for prostitution are not necessarily poor and dependent on drugs, and so-called “rescue-and-recovery” operations that lump sex workers in with victims of sex trafficking have lead to human rights abuses across the globe. Many activists say Griffin’s habit of thrusting her clients into the limelight…isn’t just manipulative, it’s dangerous…Kamylla claims she never offered [an undercover cop] sexual intercourse, but she could not afford a lawyer. She called [the 8 Minutes] team…and…asked if they could help her with legal representation. Instead of connecting Kamylla with an attorney, they connected her with…Griffin…At the time, Adrian Garcia was the sheriff of Houston, and in April he resigned to run for mayor of Houston. Sex worker activists began connecting the dots on social media. It turned out that Griffin has Garcia to thank for her program in the Houston jail, along with its $40,000 annual budget. The activists dug up photos of Griffin and Garcia appearing in public together and were outraged to discover via social media that Griffin’s We’ve Been There Done That participants, many of whom were once held in Garcia’s jail, were asked to volunteer for Garcia’s campaign, and posed with him for photos wearing their organization’s T-shirt. “Adrian Garcia is basically arresting himself this little army of free labor,” [said] one activist…Sex worker activists obtained audio recordings from some of the meetings that Kamylla attended, and the content made them furious. In one recording, which is posted on YouTube, Griffin insists that a criminal is a criminal, and criminals hurt people, so even anyone who has “prostituted” even “one time” must admit that they share common ground with rapists and even Charles Manson…
Business As Usual (#442)
“She declined the officer’s request“. Badge-lickers are nauseatingly obsequious, even when they’re talking about a savage would-be rapist:
A shocking video…captures the moment a [cop] brutally beats a mother on the street after “she refused to perform a sex act on him”. In the clip, Weerasinghe Arachchilage Kanthilatha, a sex worker from Ratnapuara, Sri Lanka, is seen being struck repeatedly…She can be heard screaming out in pain as she lies on the ground…[P.P. Thissera] threatened to “teach her a lesson” before returning a few days later and attacking her with [his] baton. The incident occurred in September 2014 and caused a public outcry…Kanthilatha and her lawyer have filed a Fundamental Rights petition in the Supreme Court, citing violation of her rights…
Yet another software package designed to sell whores out to the cops:
A San Diego State University professor and graduate student have developed [software]…that they believe could help law enforcement identify human trafficking victims…[it] can browse though thousands of Internet ads for “escorts” and finding potential victims through certain key words, phrases or other indicators….Murray Jennex…said the knowledge management system he and graduate student Marisa Hultgren developed could be a potential tool for [targeting sex workers for arrest]…“We’re looking for things that indicate young people,” Jennex said. “Things like, ‘Barely legal, fresh, college freshman”…The system they developed also searches for indicators that a person is being confined, such as ads that stipulate in-calls only, meaning a client must come to a specific place. The system also searches for signs that a victim is being moved from town to town…Posts that suggest an escort is “open minded” and “willing to try anything” also could indicate somebody is being coerced by a trafficker…
So basically sex workers in their early twenties, or who don’t have cars, or who tour, or who do fetish work, are all “trafficking victims”. The ignorance involved here is truly staggering.
The Face of Trafficking (#567)
Another case of what really happens when a wannabe “pimp” abducts a girl:
An East Bay rapper has been charged with human trafficking and sexually abusing a minor over a period of several weeks, and could spend the next 20 years in prison if convicted. Joshua Richard Durham…goes by the stage name “Five Hunnet”…Police started investigating the case after the alleged victim — a female runaway who is  years old — told her family that Durham had been soliciting her…from Aug. 1 through Aug. 11…[and again] from Aug. 31 to Sept. 3 Durham continued to traffic the girl…and also forced her to perform oral sex on him during that time…
As usual: no cartel, no interstate travel, and victim got away in a very short time. This is absolutely nothing like the myths. The story has one horrifying element, though: “Some of his lyrics contain references to pimping, and members of the District Attorney’s Office reportedly instructed…police to listen to Durham’s lyrics for potential evidence…” Can you imagine what crimes the pigs could discover “evidence” for in my fiction?
Here’s what Tara Burns had to say about another highly-publicized recent case:
The public hears about trafficking most frequently in made-up, sensational movies and fundraising tall tales…Did you think sex trafficking was people being forced into prostitution? That hardly ever happens — if for no other reason than that the customers would freak out…in #TheStory, which Zola has clarified is “based on a true story“, sex trafficking happened when Jessica lied and told her they were just going to dance and the guy was just her roommate (fraud in recruitment). Women like Zola have been charged with conspiracy to traffick just for posting ads on the Internet…Sex trafficking in real life and the courtroom is so different from sex trafficking on TV that no one even recognizes it…
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