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Posts Tagged ‘ethics’

White people saving white people is not as sexy and compelling as white people getting to further exercise their savior complex through the racist stereotype of the submissive, obedient Asian sex slave.  –  Laura LeMoon

Rough Trade 

From Norway, the other feminist paradise:

A 36 year old man has been sentenced to five years in prison after being found guilty of two rapes.  The punishment would have been harsher if the victims were not prostitutes…the judgment of Stavanger District Court [reads]…”By the rape of a prostitute who has agreed to sell sexual services, but where a situation arises where the offender will not pay, and thus develop into a rape which in this case is the violation of sexual integrity by a somewhat different character”…the verdict has been appealed…

The Daughters of Shamhat

Sex work is not an evil to be tolerated, but a good to be celebrated:

…Over the next year I sought out…sexworkers…every for every time I felt I was losing control…the only thing holding me together was the sexworkers I was seeing every three to four weeks.  They kept my wife safe from my anger…Based on the recommendation of a sexworker I sought help.  I was diagnosed with PTSD…later [my wife] filed for divorce…years [later] I met a young lady…that stole my heart.  After two months of dating…she said she could not have an exclusive physical relationship with me, but if I was willing to have a mentally exclusive and love exclusive relationship, she would be more than happy to join me in such a relationship.  That’s when she explained that she was a sexworker…Today, she and I are married.  We have a loving relationship based on openness and honesty.  She actually encourages me seeing sexworkers…

If Men Were Angels

This is obviously a major ethical violation, but I don’t think letting drug warriors handle the case helped anyone:

[Doctor] Naga Thota…was sentenced to more than two years in federal prison for distributing controlled substances without a legitimate purpose, part of…a “quid pro quo situation in which he exchanged drugs, gifts and money for sex.”  A criminal complaint accuses him of having similar arrangements with two other patients — all of them in their 20s and addicted to pain pills…Thota and the women would exchange sexually explicit texts, then Thota would write prescriptions in exchange for sexual favors…he switched them to more powerful painkillers, then increased the dosages — and their dependence on him as a supplier…

Guinea Pigs 

“Protecting women” is nearly always code for either spying on us or controlling us:

…the imagination of safety for women in public spaces always ends up focusing on monitoring their moves – by dotting the cityscape with closed-circuit television cameras.  The Karnataka government responded to the allegations of rape and molestation by announcing the purchase of 550 more CCTVs, never mind that the thousand-odd such devices had failed to stop the assaults in the first place…in spite of having more security cameras than any other country in Europe, only 3% of street robberies in London were solved using CCTV images in 2015.  Additionally, this bolsters the notion that crimes against women are always inflicted by unknown persons — the ubiquitous stranger rape – and erases that most such violence happens within the home, by family members, where there are no CCTVs…The gentrification – which included CCTV installation — of Kolkata’s biggest lakeside park threw sex workers and transfolk onto the streets and made them far more susceptible to police and stranger violence…

To Molest and Rape 

Don’t socialize with the sleazy fuckers, either:

A Minneapolis [cop]…sexually [assaulted] an unconscious woman with whom he was out drinking earlier that night…Thomas Robert Tichich…and the victim were with another woman who invited them to spend the night at her home…to avoid driving drunk…the victim passed out on a large living room couch.  The woman went to sleep in an upstairs bedroom and told Tichich to sleep on a smaller living room couch…[she] woke up later to find Tichich in her bed touching her arm…[so she] told Tichich to leave the room.  A while later, the woman, unable to sleep, went downstairs to find Tichich naked and standing over the victim sleeping on the large couch and attempting a sex act.  She took photographs using her cellphone, then kicked Tichich out of her house and called police…

Still a Child (#677) 

A rare victory against prohibitionists:

[Prohibitionists] were dealt a blow…in a federal court in Louisiana, with U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier siding with strippers between the ages of 18 and 20 in their dispute with a recent Louisiana lawthat prohibits anyone age 18 to 20 from dancing nude in Louisiana strip clubs.  The decision deals a major blow to what legislators [pretend is] an effort to shield young women from being exploited by  human traffickers that they [fantasize] recruit young women in clubs…The ruling appears to establish stripping as a constitutional right under the First Amendment, making Barbier not just a hero to strippers, but to Americans in general…

Send In the Clowns 

Back so soon?

Extra police patrolled West Mifflin, Pennsylvania over the weekend after officials received reports of two men with weapons, dressed as clowns, frightening a group of children…The search didn’t turn up any evidence…The children were playing hide-and-go-seek in the woods, when around 4:15 p.m. they [claimed] two men dressed like scary clowns and carrying weapons approached them…

The War Goes On 

The prohibitionist arseholes at the New York Times still refuse to understand how anti-sex crusades harm sex workers:

In the fight against child sex trafficking, shutting down an epicenter like Backpage was a major victory, but one against a relentless foe that quickly unfurled new tentacles…it…illustrated how difficult it is to stamp out the practice of selling children for sex…Eric Quan, a [vice pig]…with the San Jose Police Department, said there had been a conspicuous rise in street prostitution…

It’s interesting how often cops & reporters with “sex trafficking” fantasies are also apparently fans of hentai. Also note that though this reporter keeps drooling about “selling children for sex” the woman he interviewed for this tragedy porn is 18.

Cooties (#711)

Super-ally Frankie Mullin exposes cop bullshit:

“Pop-up brothels” full of trafficked women are sweeping the country, according to a spate of recent reports…The tale – valiant but kindly cops, the suggestion of women chained to radiators – with its trendy packaging in hipster terminology has been guzzled up by the press.  Basic fact-checking…is absent…in the last 12 months recorded, Devon and Cornwall police have made just one referral for sex trafficking to the National Referral Mechanism…and that was for an underage girl from the UK…Insp Dave Meredith…admitted…”We haven’t managed to locate any traffickers as a direct result of visiting pop-up brothels”…when I checked out Meredith’s claim – repeated by every news outlet which covered the story – that “the sex workers are the victims so we try to offer them help and signpost them to various agencies”, I hit a dead end…So…contrary to news reports: no Eastern European trafficking victims have been found, and “signposting to agencies” is, as yet, a hypothetical concept.  If the situation arose, cops would “google it”…

Spotlight (#715) 

It’s so good to see people who had a bad time in sex work attacking self-proclaimed savior Asstoon:

With tears brimming his eyes and a quiver in his voice, Ashton Kutcher testified…how he had recently seen a video of a 7-year-old girl in Cambodia being raped.  Search for his speech online, and shockingly, no one seems to have one word of criticism for the actor-turned-crusader…despite the fact that he…according to his own admission, is somehow getting ahold of and watching what is essentially child snuff porn — and then crying about it to the senate, where he’s praised for his compassion.  Unlike Kutcher, I am a trafficking survivor. I have also come to the sex industry at various points of my own choosing and have worked as an escort, adult film performer and street-based sex worker…What Kutcher represents…is exactly the problem with the global anti-trafficking movement today: paternalism and the trafficking savior complex…it has become abundantly clear to me that there might be — at most — one other trafficking survivor among potentially hundreds of people at [“anti-trafficking”] events.  This is precisely why Kutcher is problematic…

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I emailed a lady whose ad I found online, asking if she was still in my area; she replied with in a few hours, listing her rates and asking for a 50% deposit for my desired session time.  This was to be paid from a PayPal cash card and she said she would contact me shortly after she  had verified the money to make meeting arraignments.  But she didn’t answer the question I actually asked, whether she still in the area (I’ve noticed some ladies move around a lot).  I used Tineye to look up her pics, but they don’t appear to be stolen.  Does any of this sound like a scam to you?

In a word?  Yeah.  I know that pretty, new girls can be very tempting for guys, especially if they don’t charge much.  But the fact of the matter is, most reputable, dependable escorts these days have an established online presence.  They’ve got their own websites, ads and posts on local escort boards, Twitter accounts and other such signs that they’re real professionals rather than scammers, cops, thieves, amateurs or flakes; in short, they leave footprints online as any real, solid entity would.  I mean, take me for an example; if you Google “Maggie McNeill” you’re going to find my blog, my Twitter, my escort site, YouTube videos, articles, interviews, my book, and even hit-pieces criticizing me…and that’s just on the first page.  Click on “images” and you’ll see over 20 pictures of me (not all of ’em flattering…*sigh*)  Go to my Twitter & you’ll find I’ve been there since December 2011, and that I have over 12,000 followers and over 132,000 tweets.  This blog has existed since July 2010, and I have reviews on ECCIE going back to that same year.  And while I’m an especially-prominent case, even less well-known ladies are going to have something; as a test I just Googled a half-dozen of my friends with the words “Seattle escort” after their names, and every one of them came up with plenty of results, more than enough to convince anyone that these are bona fide sex work professionals rather than who-knows-whats hiding behind fake pictures.  It may be that the lady you contacted is both well-known and well-reviewed, and has a prominent online footprint, but beyond the Tineye search which turned up nothing (which itself seems weird; a Google reverse image search on a few of my pics turned up matches on my website, Twitter & some scraper sites) you don’t seem to have made any effort to check her out, so I can’t say.  But I will say this:  nobody who isn’t well-established can generally ask for deposits and expect to get them, so if your gal is as much of a ghost as she appears to be (and again, I only have your word to go on), she’s either incredibly overconfident or trolling for guys too horny to bother with due diligence.

(Have a question of your own?  Please consult this page to see if I’ve answered it in a previous column, and if not just click here to ask me via email.)

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Anti-sex-trafficking…is a zero-tolerance movement rooted in fear propaganda that uses police power, public shaming, creepy reeducation, and increased surveillance.  –  Savannah Sly

Feminine Pragmatism 

An absolutely fucking brilliant act of harlotry:

One crafty [woman] from China…[convinced] 20 boyfriends to buy her 20 new iPhone 7s, which she then sold for enough money to put a down payment on a house.  Using the pseudonym Proud Qiaoba, a blogger gave a detailed description of how the hustle was performed by a colleague of hers, dubbed Xiaoli…the BBC reported it has been able to authenticate the claims…Xiaoli…sold 20 iPhones to a mobile phone recycling plant for $A23,200 ($17,815) and then used that money for her house deposit…

Decentralization

Another anti-establishment group throws sex workers under the bus in an attempt to curry favor with the overlords:

Following [illegal threats]…from [a power-mad] Illinois [politician]…Visa and MasterCard ceased doing business with BackPage…[because] bitcoin was a perfect workaround, the decision had an unintended side effect that may have actually helped make the job of modern day slave traders even easier.  The tried-and-true investigative techniques that had been until that moment employed by law enforcement and banks to help prevent human trafficking were largely rendered null and void as the pedlars of human cargo embraced bitcoin.  Then, in December 2015, a [prohibitionist named]…Timea Nagy, addressed a room filled with financial executives from some of the largest banks in Canada and made a plea…asking them to modernize the way they track the financial transactions that power human trafficking…

Note that this pro-bitcoin site is obsequiously positioning itself on the side of pigs and government surveillance, and blatantly casting sex workers as passive, infantilized victims of imaginary “pimps”.  It’s enough to make one vomit.

The Public Eye savannah

A short interview with a dear friend, the superlative Savannah Sly:

When I first met Savannah Sly in…2015, she was working to fight bills in the Washington State Legislature that aimed to increase punishments for buyers of sex.  Sly, then volunteering with the Sex Workers Outreach Project-Seattle (SWOP-Seattle) and wearing cat ears, cited a slew of facts on the harms of such policies from multiple sex-work studies…A year later, the New York Times ran a big story questioning whether prostitution should even be considered a crime, and Amnesty International published a position on sex work that concurred with Sly’s: Criminalizing sex-buying also puts sex workers…in harm’s way.  Much of this newfound recognition for sex workers’ rights can be traced to the activism of sex worker advocates like Sly, who refused to shut up when uninformed lawmakers attempted to crack down on sex work…

With Friends Like These…

Brothel owners who promote “diseased whore” myths and “sex trafficking” lies to further their own interests are the worst kind of scum:

Tracey Smith has been the manager of Butterfly’s Massage Parlour in Alexandra Parade for 10 years.  Butterfly’s recently came under fire after a BBC investigation said it had hired girls as young as 15 to clean its rooms and hand out leaflets – claims Tracey says are “completely false…The girls who work here clean their own rooms…and…Any leaflets advertising Butterfly’s have never shown a woman – the only image they ever have on them is of a butterfly…The girls work here voluntarily, they are never forced to work…We have regular health checks for the girls and regular inspections from the council and the police.  We have a no drugs policy and if we think a girl might be an addict of any sort she cannot work here…We have had girls come to us who have gone to work at other places and realised…they were going to be trafficked”…

Checklist

Gee, I can’t imagine why a teenager would want a fake ID:

…the North Alabama Human Trafficking Task Force wants everyone to know the signs of this crime…When you’re out, [spy on] the children [and teenagers] around you…poor health, anxious demeanor and even tattoos…other “red flags” of human trafficking victims [include]…Inability to make eye contact…will not speak to [a stranger] alone [after years of “stranger danger” indoctrination]…Lying about age or false ID…

The Widening Gyre (#314) 

Missing woman was last seen with a member of a gang who commit violence against women at twice the rate of the general population; naturally, her family blames imaginary bogeymen instead:

It’s been six weeks since 20-year-old Wichita…college student Toni Anderson went missing.  Her parents…[imagine] their daughter is a victim of human trafficking…the morning of January 15…[she made] a text exchange with a friend, saying she had been pulled over [by] a North Kansas City [cop]…After that, she was gone…

Monsters chyna-doll-dupree

Another woman senselessly murdered:

A transgender woman was shot dead…outside a shopping center in New Orleans East, according to a relative who identified the victim as Chyna Doll Dupree…Neighbors said they heard eight to 10 gunshots…Dupree is a drag performer…[who] has toured in shows across the country…[she] had recently arrived from her current home in California to celebrate Mardi Gras with friends and family…

The End of the Beginning (#661)

Another step toward getting rid of these tyrannical and unconstitutional laws completely:

A few years ago, Marc Pepitone was arrested at a park in Bolingbrook, Illinois…for walking his dog there…A law enacted more than a decade later made it a crime for sex offenders like Pepitone to be present in “a park, forest preserve, bikeway, trail, or conservation area under the jurisdiction of the State or a unit of local government”…a state appeals court overturned Pepitone’s conviction after concluding that the law he broke “is unconstitutional on its face because it bears no reasonable relationship to protecting the public”…

See also the second item below.

The Pygmalion Fallacy (#679) 

If this is a “brothel”, then a room with a foosball table in it is a “stadium”:

A brothel, filled with only sex dolls in Barcelona, boasts “appointments” with its “staff” for 80 euros per hour.  Lumidolls…claims to be the first establishment offering this service in Europe.  Options of doll include “Lily, Katy, Laiza and Aki”, who are all of varying height and aesthetics; such as anime Aki and “big boobed” Katy.  Clients can request in advance how one of the four dolls will be dressed…the dolls are “poseable” and feature three orifices…

The End of the Beginning (#686) 

More good news about bad laws:

The Supreme Court on Monday appeared likely to strike down a North Carolina criminal law that bars people on the state’s sex offender registry list from “accessing” social networking websites…[which] have become “crucially important” places for political communication — with Justice Elena Kagan noting, “The president now uses Twitter”…The state’s lawyer, Senior Deputy Attorney General Robert Montgomery, responded that the law doesn’t bar those on the registry from the entire internet…[and cited] a 1992 case, Burson v. Freeman, in which the court upheld a 100-foot buffer zone barring political activity outside polling places…Justice Anthony Kennedy replied…that if Burson is the state’s only case supporting its argument, “[Y]ou lose.”  Montgomery provided no other case.

All-Purpose Excuse (#717)

“Sex trafficking” fetishists are becoming increasingly unhinged:

At Townhall.com, sex-crime [profiteer]…Liz Crokin accuses the mainstream media of “ignoring Trump’s sex trafficking busts.”  In Crokin’s reality, “authorities have arrested an unprecedented number of sexual predators involved in child sex trafficking rings in the United States” since Donald Trump took office on January 20.  “There have been a staggering 1,500-plus arrests in one short month; compare that to less than 400 sex trafficking-related arrests in 2014 according to the FBI,” Crokin writes.  This is, as Trump would put it, “fake news.”  Every part of it.  For starters, the 2014 data she links to is far from a complete account of U.S. sex-trafficking arrests that year.  It reflects incomplete state-level arrest numbers…and…does not include…arrests by federal agencies such as the FBI and…ICE…many of the [supposedly post-Trump] arrests Crokin includes in her tally—arrests that include mostly women selling sex and men trying to engage in consensual adult prostitution—are part of annual sting operations, were the result of investigations in the works long before Trump took office, and/or had absolutely nothing to do with federal law-enforcement directives or activities…

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I told you that I was going to be doing a lot more hands-on activism, and…you ain’t seen nothin’ yet.  –  “The ‘Active’ in ‘Activism’

Inimg_20170302_202514 the two years since I moved to Seattle, I’ve been a lot more hands-on in my sex worker rights activities; whereas in the past I mostly just wrote about the subject, now I also speak in public, give lots of interviews, participate in protests, speak to politicians and try to amplify as many other voices on the subject as possible.  And when I sat down to write this year’s column recognizing Sex Worker Rights Day (which is today), I realized that it’s no longer possible to cleanly divide my private life from my activism.  Whereas seven years ago most of the people I dealt with regularly had no idea I was a sex worker, now it would be much easier to count the number who don’t than the ones who do.  Those few friends who aren’t whores themselves certainly know I’m one, as do the majority of the professionals I deal with (my accountant, my hairdresser, my doctors, my manicurist, etc, etc), and even when strangers ask what I do for a living I generally tell them; the few exceptions are usually when I’m in a social situation with a friend who isn’t out to the others in that situation, or when dealing with people who might hassle me if they knew the truth (like officials).  Indeed, very few people now call me anything but Maggie; it was actually a little odd to hear Grace using my legal name when she came to visit at Christmas.  But this really isn’t surprising; if anything, it’s the natural outcome of the mission I took on when I started this blog.  I wanted to demystify the demimonde, to shine light into the shadows that let prohibitionists spread their lies about us so successfully.  As I’ve said so often in interviews and speeches, the movement for gay & lesbian rights didn’t start to gain traction until enough queer people were “out” that most people realized that they knew and perhaps even loved someone queer; it will be the same for sex worker rights.  And while I don’t blame any sex worker living under a criminalized or “legalized” regime for keeping her silence, it’s imperative that those of us who have less to lose be as “out” as we can manage under our individual circumstances.  I have no spouse to embarrass, no children who could be taken from me, no family I’m not already estranged from, no future career plans that could be torpedoed by an employer discovering my history of harlotry.  And while no sex worker is safe while any of us are considered criminals, I have less personally to lose than many others and so I’m proud to be both visible and respected for my work, without shame or fear.  The tide has turned and the wind is shifting; sex workers are more visible than we’ve ever been, and nobody without power hunger, profit motive, or a personal ax to grind is in favor of criminalization any more.  In a way, the “sex trafficking” hysteria was an early symptom that we’re winning; since our opponents couldn’t credibly portray us as villains any more, they turned to casting us as victims.  And now that narrative, too, is failing, as reasonable people everywhere realize that criminalization makes things worse for those in bad situations.  The day is coming when the prohibitions will start to fall like dominoes, and when it does I’ll be even more proud to know that I was one of those who helped knock that first one over.

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Hi there, boys and girls!  It’s time for another anti-whore article so thoroughly and pervasively offensive that I couldn’t bear to just print a short quote and be done.  Today’s example is from the prohibitionist, cop-worshipping Los Angeles Times, and was written by one James Queally (Hi James!  I hope you enjoy all the tweets and emails I’m asking everyone who reads this to beseige you with, so you learn to consult sex workers next time you’re assigned to do a hit piece on us).  But without further ado, let’s look at this slab of rancid tripe:

Night after night, a small group of students and professors from California State University Northridge traveled to Van Nuys last year for an unorthodox mission.  In packs of two or four, they searched for young women standing on dark street corners along Sepulveda Boulevard, then waited for the men who would inevitably come calling on them.  For eight months, the students and instructors followed the johns and the women they sought sex from along a stretch of the boulevard that officials consider one of the busiest prostitution strolls in Los Angeles.

“Packs” is the right word; these so-called academics actually stalked and spied on other citizens, attempting to catch them in the “crime” of having consensual sex.  This could only be more dehumanizing if they shot them with tranquilizer darts and attached radio tags to their ears.  If their victims were anyone other than sex workers and clients, these Stasi wannabes could be arrested and charged under stalking laws.

The Cal State group documented the places they met and where they had sex in an attempt to help police and city officials stamp out a decades-old problem…

prohibitionism-by-arborismWere Cal State a private entity, this would be an example of fascism, the marriage of corporate, political & paramilitary (such as police) power.  But the fact that Cal State is a public university renders this merely creepy and unethical rather than fascistic; I’m not sure what ethical constraints “urban studies” professors operate under, but if it’s typical of social sciences this is an egregious violation of the consent of the experimental subjects.

…Based on the academic research, Councilwoman Nury Martinez said…she has launched a $780,000 program aimed at eliminating locations where johns and young women, many of whom she [fantasizes] are forced into prostitution under threat of violence…The…study identified up to 40 locations used for illegal sex that could be safeguarded by the addition of street lamps or the trimming of nearby trees…“It has to do with line of sight,” [oinked] Chief [pig] Bob Green…“When people feel like they can hide in the shadows to commit prostitution or take something from your car or steal your car, they’re gonna do it”…

I love the juxtaposition of rhetoric here; these lying sacks of shit will say whatever they think will play best with the audience, but didn’t bother to coordinate their stories.  On the one hand, the politician is trying to sell this police-state BS with the typical masturbatory fantasy of teen sex slaves, while the pig prefers the old “whore as criminal” trope and equates a peaceful, consensual transaction with theft (even to the point of vomiting out the moronic phrase “commit prostitution”, which I suggest you compare with “commit teaching”, “commit accounting” or “commit policing”).  Neither the reporter nor his editor seemed to be uncomfortable with the horrific phrase “illegal sex”, which only 14 years ago would have included a lot of homosexual activity and within my lifetime included interracial sex.  The lack of self-awareness is almost mind-boggling.

…The project is the latest step in a years-long initiative to curb human trafficking and prostitution along Sepulveda Boulevard, Martinez said.  The [politician and the pig] came together to spearhead the creation of an anti-trafficking task force in the San Fernando Valley in 2015, a unit that arrested nearly 400 johns last year…Prostitution has been a problem in the area for decades…the sight of women waiting on street corners along Sepulveda was common as far back as the 1980s.  But in recent years, Martinez said she has noticed a troubling trend.  The corners are now populated by girls, rather than women.  “The last couple of years, the age of the women who they traffic on this corridor has gotten younger and younger and younger” she said…The victims, she said, are trafficked to Los Angeles from other major cities, including Las Vegas and Seattle…

Note the conflation of sex work with coercion, an equation only possible in the prudish & misogynistic minds of sex prohibitionists like Martinez, who wants us to believe that she actually pays such close attention to streetwalkers and has such superhuman memory and mathematical skills that she can catalog the apparent ages of women she has seen in a certain area over a stretch of three decades, average them, then plot those averages on a mental graph to note that they are growing younger.  Clearly, her superior mutant mind is wasted in politics; imagine what she could’ve accomplished as a physicist or meteorologist.  Alternate theory suggested by application of Occam’s Razor:  Of course they look younger to the old bat than they used to; twenty-something women seemed old to her when she was a schoolgirl, and now they seem like kids.  But in either case, she has to represent the sex workers as passive, doll-like victims, “trafficked” (in dog crates loaded on pallets in tractor-trailers, no doubt) by ninja “pimps” with mind-control powers.  Methinks she’s been living too close to Hollywood for too long.

…Henrik Minassians, an associate professor of urban studies and planning at CSUN who led the study, said anyone trying to have sex with an underage girl would have little trouble doing so along the Van Nuys stretch…[his “evidence” is that he claims one of the women he was stalking said to him] “She can bring you underage girls”…before pointing to another woman.  At least 10 trafficking victims have been rescued from the area, according to LAPD records. Five of them were just 15 years old, said Lt. Marc Evans, who [presented no evidence for the claim]…

This is what passes for “evidence” in this voyeuristic safari masquerading as science:  the claim of one woman against another (who was apparently not interviewed), which could have been motivated by anything from the hope she’d be rewarded for telling these asses what they wanted to hear, to the hope of getting an enemy arrested for pimping.  That, and the sexual fantasies of a pig who claims to have found five 15-year-olds but no girls of 14, 16 or 17.  The McNeill Rule  points toward what “Lieutenant” Evans’ favorite fetish is.

…Martinez hopes the changes will…discourage pimps who are trafficking young women in her district…Minassians said the purpose of the study was to eradicate conditions favorable to…pimps and johns…The use of environmental manipulation to disrupt illicit activity has worked well for other police agencies.  When trying to find a way to combat lewd conduct and public sex in recent years, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department began using similar tactics, namely trimming trees and improving lighting, to [attempt to create a panopticon]…

panopticonLet’s conclude with the rotten heart of this loathsome screed:  the treatment of sex work as a disease to be eliminated.  I mean, look at the language; it sounds like they’re talking about draining a bog to get rid of mosquitoes.  This is what “government” and “policing” actually mean in this country: treating human beings as animals to be managed, corralled, studied, punished and harvested (for taxes and fines), instead of citizens who have just as much right to be in public places as anyone else.  The idea that it doesn’t actually hurt anyone for others to have sex in a dark place outdoors never even occurs to these Puritans; the idea that someone might be doing something where they can’t watch offends them and, apparently, frustrates their voyeuristic impulses.

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Tiger, Tiger

Lately I’ve found that I’m doing some of my best writing on Twitter, but since it’s an ephemeral medium I’m going to start reposting especially good tweet threads here.  On Saturday, while we were watching the mass protests against Trump’s executive order preventing people from a number of predominantly-Muslim countries from entering the US even if they had green cards, I tweeted the following; the second paragraph was tweeted later in response to people who kept erroneously referring to the protests, and the actions of lawyers rushing out to help detainees pro bono, as “democracy” when in fact it was (the republican form of) democracy that created and empowered the very system which these people were fighting. snarling-tiger

If I were the sort of person who found comfort in being right, I’d be very smug now that millions are waking up to the danger of giving more than a tiny amount of power to “leaders”.  But since I’m NOT that kind of person, I’m just shaking my head.  I’m not a seer or a brilliant analyst of mob psychology; I just understand that ALL humans are too flawed to be given power over others except in very limited circumstances & subject to revocation of that power by EACH individual subject to it.  In other words, no person is morally bound to obey “authorities” merely because he or she happens to be physically located within imaginary lines on a map which those “authorities” claim belong to them.  Donald Trump’s moral authority, or the moral authority of ANY politician, is exactly as legitimate as the moral authority of a tiger pissing on trees to mark its territory.  In other words, one should be mindful that there’s a dangerous and irrational animal in the area which believes it has the “right” to do anything it wants to those within that territory, but that animal’s behavior doesn’t represent “justice” or a “social contract” or “divine right” or anything else but the predictable behavior of a violent animal with no understanding of what right & wrong actually mean.  “Authorities”, like tigers, are best avoided unless they’re locked up in cages where they can’t maim others due to some whim, urge or emotion.  What they are NOT to be given is any kind of obedience or deference except what’s minimally necessary to get away safely if one happens to run into one.  And the same cautions apply whether it’s a Bengal tiger or a Siberian one, whether it has white, black or orange coloring behind the stripes, whether it’s male or female, or whether it’s actually a lion, leopard or jaguar instead of a tiger.  And replacing one tiger with another one won’t change anything except what that particular individual tiger might be most enraged by.

Individuals acting toward some shared goal, without a formal structure enforced by violence, is not “democracy”; it’s anarchy.  Grasp that.  Those who think “anarchy” is evil need to look at these protests & lawyers voluntarily helping immigrants.  THAT IS ANARCHY.  So the next time some ass tells you about how we “need” government to prevent anarchy, remember these protests; the truth is, we need anarchy to protect us from government.

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There is a well-established connection between moral panic…and laws that produce grotesque injustices.  –  Matt Welch

A Tale That Grew in the Telling 

Fetishists claim that Texas has about 500% of the underage sex workers in the US:

With 79,000 kids currently being trafficked in Texas, human trafficking is a statewide, underground issue, and Waco is no exception…The Heart of Texas Human Trafficking Coalition held a roundtable meeting…to discuss the underlying issues and new efforts to prevent trafficking.  A [fascist] effort is underway between law enforcement, church groups, and social workers to minimize the demand for prostitution…

Elephant in the Parlor goofy-trump

Politician pays whores for mildly-kinky show.  Yawn.

An unverified and salacious 35-page document, a summary of which was presented to President Barack Obama and President-elect Trump last week, includes allegations that Russian operatives sought to “exploit Trump’s personal obsessions and sexual perversion” to gain compromising material on him…The most explosive allegation is that Trump hired a “number of prostitutes to perform a ‘golden showers’ [sic] (urination) show in front of him”…

Neither Addiction Nor Epidemic 

“Sex addiction” is becoming a “get out of jail free” card:

A man [is] accused of trying to have sex with an underage girl, while dressed up as a character from the Men in Black movie…Michael Geressy is known for dressing up as various movie characters…but…police said he had a secret identity as a child sex predator…His attorney…asked the judge to continue his arraignment so his client can begin treatment for sex addiction…

Standard Operating Procedure

If only amateurs realized how common this sort of thing is:

Jason Mount…is suing the U.S. Department of Homeland Security…for records purportedly held by DHS…”that contain information regarding an allegation that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations, Supervisory Special Agent Peter Edge lost his official credentials to a prostitute and the credentials had to be retrieved by local police“…If the allegations are true, it means that a top ICE agent cavorted with a prostitute, lost his credentials during his date, and then summoned the local police to help him find his papers…

Dysphemisms Galore 

I find the lack of “victim” rhetoric here kind of refreshing:

…four people who live there presented me with the problem of hookers and hopheads in Brooklyn, on the south side of Baltimore…all of them are concerned about crime creep: more and more prostitutes who gather on sidewalks day and night; men in expensive sedans and pickup trucks that form…a virtual caravan of johns looking for sex.  The prostitutes…sometimes solicit customers near a church and an elementary school…Lisa Bowling say[s]…”We can count the whores and johns and drug dealers as they stroll down the street…We have been to meetings with the police where they state that it’s a ‘victimless crime.’  Funny, I don’t think they have whores in front of their houses every day”…

Traffic Circle

“Sex trafficking” debunking comes to the LA Times:

Sen. Dianne Feinstein…[led] off her critical cross-examination of the nation’s likely next top cop with a factually insane claim that will probably give him more power…In order for “human sex trafficking” to be the second largest criminal industry in the United States, it would at minimum need to supplant illegal narcotics (roughly $100 billion a year)…or Medicare fraud (in the ballpark of $60 billion)…So distant is reality from those numbers that even the commonly cited figure of $9.8 billion a year for all trafficking…was given “four Pinocchios” by Washington Post fact-checker Glenn Kessler.  Feinstein wasn’t done.  “Trafficking victims,” she warned, average “12 to 14” in age. (“Four Pinocchios,” judged Kessler.)  These fake numbers have consequences. Congress has leaned on such bogus statistics by periodically ratcheting up the penalties of…the criminals apprehended [who] are disproportionately adult females who work in the sex industry by choice

It’s Different Because It Involves Sex, Part Umpteen (#546)

As usual, Indians understand this far better than Americans do:

If the government of Maharashtra has its way, there would be bars in the state where the clientele won’t be served alcohol…The law…demanded the abolition of alcohol anywhere near the dancers at dance bars as well as the installation of CCTV cameras on the premises…Even the highest court of the land called these strictures “absurd” and “arbitrary” and “absolutely regressive by centuries”.  Now, in a fresh affidavit to the Supreme Court, the state has argued that bar dancing is “vulgar” and “not an art form that needs to be protected and promoted”.  It has alleged that such activities are often a cover for…the exploitation of women.  The girls who perform the dances, the state added, were not “trained artistes”, their dancing has very little “entertainment value” and borders on the obscene…

Note that such laws are very common in the US, especially in so-called “progressive” states like Washington.

Cheesy Scheme

It was inevitable that the “escort licensing” scam would eventually spread beyond Wisconsin:

…Escorts working in Mesa [Arizona] will now have to register for a license with the city.  [Politicians fantasize that] increasing regulations could help crack down on sex-trafficking operations that masquerade as escort services…Escort applicants will undergo a business and criminal background check…

Crying for Nanny (#659)

Unfortunately, this doesn’t really help Backpage now:

The Supreme Court said Monday it won’t hear an appeal from three sex trafficking victims who accuse advertising website Backpage.com of helping to promote the exploitation of children.  The justices left in place a lower court ruling that said federal law shields Backpage from liability because the site is just hosting content created by people who use it…

The Last Shall Be First (#675)

Alabama wants to put pigs in women’s bathrooms.  Seriously.

Alabama might place attendants in public restrooms as part of the state’s potential transgender bathroom bill…to guard against potential “molestation, assault and battery”…The act…would force public institutions to have bathrooms that only serve one gender or to place attendants in bathrooms that serve both genders…

Shift in the Wind (#692)

Medical ethicists are now solidly behind decriminalization:

…health care workers should support the full decriminalization of prostitution…By removing punitive laws that prevent reporting of exploitation and abuse, decriminalization allows sex workers to work more safely, thereby reducing marginalization and vulnerability.  Decriminalization can also help destigmatize sex work and help resist political, social, and cultural marginalization of sex workers…

The Naked Anthropologist (#701) the-three-headed-dog

Dr. Laura Agustín on why she wrote The Three-Headed Dog:

…I’m not making a sudden switch to fiction.  It’s one of the things I used to write before the Internet, before doing postgraduate degrees, before social media.  I began this story, in my head and scribbled notes, not long after starting those degrees in the late 90s…In general such stories are not published unless the migrants are portrayed as passive victims needing rescue by much straighter and more comfortable characters…Just as I strove to show in Sex at the Margins that many migrants don’t perceive themselves as inert objects of cruel fate and evil men, here a few of them act out their stories, trying to find ways to get ahead and stay out of trouble…The characters here are neither real nor unreal but created themselves in my imagination out of my long experience of travelling on my own and talking with people.  I’ve seen everything that happens in this book.  I’ve known people who thought and acted these ways…

The War Goes On 

The operators of…Backpage.com…declined to answer questions from a Senate panel investigating the company’s adult services ads, which lawmakers and law enforcement [fantasize] have helped facilitate pimping and child sex trafficking in the U.S.  Backpage CEO Carl Ferrer, his business associates James Larkin and Michael Lacey as well as other company officials appeared before the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations but invoked their Fifth Amendment right not to incriminate themselves…

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