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Posts Tagged ‘Recognition’

Sex is what begins our lives and death is what ends it.  They’re two sides of the same coin.  –  Carla Valentine

Recognition

A marriage made in heaven:

A 52-year-old man in…Katy [Texas]…saw the profile of a new 28-year-old [sex worker.  He booked her]…for 2 hours…[for] $150…[haggled] down from her [rate] of $200.  Guests…in adjoining rooms called to report a disturbance…after the woman arrived…and found that the client was…her husband of…17 years…[she] was actually the man’s 49-year-old wife…

License to Rape

Cops raping sex workers is so ubiquitous, non-cop rapists often pose as cops to facilitate the crime:

…Anthony Jones of Jacksonville, Florida…requested a date from an online escort service and promised to pay US$200…Shortly after the prostitute arrived…Jones said he was an FBI agent and that if she did not [submit to his raping her]…she would be arrested.  When the woman complained, Jones called an accomplice on the phone who was working from a script…Jones also pointed to a smoke detector in the bedroom and said the woman was being monitored by a hidden camera.  Afterward, the prostitute told her roommate…and the two realised she had been scammed.  They then went to Jones’ residence to collect the money.  A heated argument that followed led to a police intervention…the accomplice…was a young woman who knew she was part of a scam but did not know Jones was trying to [commit rape]…the young woman – the mother of Jones’ child – had lost both her parents in a car accident and received a settlement of about US$35,000…from the insurance company.  Jones lied and told her he was an investment adviser and that he owned fast food restaurants and would invest the money for her…

The Swedish Pimpocracy 

If Sweden really gave a damn about these rape charges, it would simply have made a public pledge not to turn Assange over to the US:

Sweden has decided to drop the rape investigation into Wikileaks founder Julian Assange.  Top prosecutor Marianne Ny said his arrest warrant was being revoked as it was impossible to serve him notice…Assange…has lived in the Ecuadorean embassy in London since 2012.  He fears extradition to Sweden would lead to extradition to the US where he is wanted over leaks.  Ecuador has called on the UK to allow him safe passage out of the country.  However, police in London said they would still be obliged to arrest him if he left…[because he] still faced the lesser charge of failing to surrender to a court, an offence punishable by up to a year in prison or a fine…the UK [will not admit that]…it has received an extradition request from the US…[but] new US Attorney General Jeff Sessions that the arrest of Mr Assange would be “a priority”

Public Service Announcement 

Sending dick pics to a stranger is a bad idea; sending dick pics to a stranger claiming to be < 18 is an incredibly bad idea.  But this is epic:

A…Secret Service officer was sentenced to 20 years in prison…for sending [dick pics]…to underage girls — while he was on duty at the White House.  Lee Robert Moore…was [arrested after]…he sent indecent materials, including a picture of himself, to [a cop pretending to be]…a teenage girl…After his arrest, investigators learned that Moore had sent sexually explicit messages and images of himself to real underage girls in Florida, Texas and Missouri…Moore must also register as a sex offender…for the rest of his life.

The Day of the Dead

Fear of death hampers enjoyment of life:

Ambitious technocrats may predict a deathless future, but as the world stands now, we’re all going to die.  This leaves us humans with the same two options we’ve had since we emerged from the evolutionary mire:  Fear the final shuffling of our mortal coils, or embrace the inevitability that we’ll all be one with the dirt.  Fortunately, there are people out there who can help ease your mind about the whole “one day you’ll be dead” thing.  One of those people is Carla Valentine, whose job as an anatomical pathologist, technical curator at Barts Pathology Museum, and author of The Chick and the Dead, has more than prepared her to come face to face with the inevitable end.  In her book…she weaves together corpse science and her intimate involvement with the “death industry” with the vital lesson about dying she’s learned over the years…”I think that when people face this idea of their mortality…they tend to live a better life…that’s been backed up by psychological studies…I think it’s because it demystifies it…it’s better to face the reality of it.  Then it’s not so scary anymore“…

Cardboard Cutouts

Prohibitionists can’t accept that sex workers are capable of choice, so partners are demonized into “loverboy pimps” in their propaganda:

The police and various healthcare institutions in Amsterdam are [conspiring] to [control those they declare] the victims of so-called loverboys…Loverboy is what the Netherlands calls a pimp that seduces fragile girls into a sexual relationship.  They then convince the girl to have sex with other men usually friends, and then push them into illegal prostitution…A loverboy can earn about 300 thousand euros per year by forcing a girl into prostitution…some aid givers believe that loverboys are part of larger criminal organizations…Amsterdam’s new joint approach will experiment with new methods, such as [deceiving women with a pig disguised as a normal person]…to win trust [via trickery]…

I wish I knew some of these girls who make €300,000/year; maybe they’d share their secret with me.

The Public Eye (#538)

The San Francisco Bay Area Sex Worker Film and Arts Festival, launched in 1999, recognizes and honors diverse sex workers, prostitutes, dancers, porn performers and others who have been integral members of arts communities throughout history.  The Festival opens on May 19th, continuing through May 28th

To Molest and Rape 

“Engaging in oral sex with a female inmate” sounds so much nicer than “forcing a caged woman to suck his cock”:

A…Jackson County [Mississippi] deputy pleaded guilty…[orally raping a caged woman]…Bradley Scott Davis…admitted to engaging in oral sex with a female inmate for two weeks in June while he was on duty at the Jackson County jail.  Davis is facing up to five years in prison, a $5,000 fine or both.  He must also register as a sex offender…A second…deputy, Johnathan Jenkins…was arrested…along with Davis [on the same charges but]…has pleaded not guilty…

Dysphemisms Galore (#705) 

Where “inside” is used to mean “in the fantasies of busybodies peering from outside”:

Daniel Farias didn’t realize how bad things had gotten until his business was broken into…“It seemed like a scene from The Walking Dead…There were people everywhere.  And by people, I mean prostitutes, drug dealers…. It was insane.  I had never seen anything like it.”  All night Farias kept vigil, watching out the broken window as a parade of people dealt in sex and drugs, some openly peeing on the street.  Lake Street’s reputation for prostitution and drugs isn’t new.  But in the last few years, it’s reached fever pitch.  Neighbors…describe finding condoms everywhere and witnessing sex acts in cars, alleys, and behind bushes…[puppeteer] Corrie Zoll…[said] “Now that I have a year under my belt of seeing it, it’s obvious how sophisticated these operations are”…women…walk against traffic, making eye contact with drivers…Mary Brown…counted nearly 30 women regularly working her block…

Honestly, I find the “whore as degraded criminal” trope a welcome change from “whore as spineless, pathetic, innocent victim” dogma.  Too bad they both include the “whores are rape victims with daddy issues & drug problems” masturbatory fantasy, though the idea that walking along a stroll constitutes a “sophisticated operation” is both ridiculous and taken directly from the propaganda cops use to justify raping sex workers.

Between the Lines (#722)

Liz Brown dives into the ugly facts about federal vice pogroms:

…one of the last things FBI Director James Comey did in office was testify before the Senate Judiciary Hearing about the agency’s “programs and priorities for the coming year”—including Operation Cross Country, the annual FBI-led prostitution roundup that I covered in Reason’s March issue.  Publicized as an attack on child sex-trafficking, Operation Cross Country (OCC) mainly targets adult sex workers and their would-be clients.  And according to Comey, last year’s bust yielded nearly double the number of prostitution arrests as Reason previously estimated…Operation Cross Country 10…yielded just 10 federal indictments as of May 2017, and only three cases involving any actual juveniles.  In those cases, none of the victims—two 17-year-old girls and one 15-year-old girl—allege abduction, abuse, threats, forcible detainment, or other mistreatment of any kind…Meanwhile, police and FBI agents arrested 996 “adult prostitution subjects”…332 times as many sex workers arrested in the stings as people indicted on federal charges involving a minor…Comey…failed to say how many prostitution arrests have been made throughout Operation Cross Country overall.  But…If we assume arrests in years where we are missing data mirror the previous operation’s tally…we wind up with something like 6,227 prostitution arrests…the FBI and Homeland Security also help with similar local stings all year long…

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After breaking down doors and waving…guns around, it’s gratifying [for cops]…to pacify terrified slaves by tasering them.  –  Joyce Arthur

Recognition

An elderly Italian man got a rather unwelcome surprise when he ordered an escort – and his…40-year-old son’s South American girlfriend…arrived at his house…the pair declined to take the encounter further and swiftly parted ways.  The man [decided]…to tell his son…prompting a bitter fight between the pair…the son [sued] his father for injuries…Barbie and Lammily

Barbie

While whitebread feminists wet themselves over the newest version of “Happy To Be Me”, Virginia Postrel isn’t having any of it:

…All right-thinking people  seem convinced that Barbie instills in her pre-school fans a false and remarkably detailed standard of beauty.  Hence the widespread  praise for Lammily, the latest anti-Barbie concept doll.  A crowd-funded project from artist Nickolay Lamm (the source of her ungainly moniker), Lammily is based on the average proportions for a 19-year-old…[but] the average 19-year-old female American stands 5 feet 4 inches tall.  She has a 33.6-inch waist and…weighs 150 pounds…If Lammily were true to life…she’d have rolls of fat, not a firm plastic tummy…Celebrating one version of average as “normal” and “realistic” implicitly stigmatizes everyone who doesn’t meet that standard.  Barbie doesn’t pretend to do that; Lammily does…

A Narrow View

This NPR article on diversion programs is full of the usual “sex trafficking” nonsense and dishonest platitudes about the programs’ effectiveness, but one section was especially troubling:

…Judge Pratt says that initially her treatment-focused approach…improved the ability to prosecute the traffickers.  But…a lot of the boys…were becoming pimps.  “The foster care system and juvenile justice system is creating both sides of this market, the suppliers and the goods,” she says…

Her revolting dehumanization of girls as “goods” is bad enough, but her willful mischaracterization of young male sex workers as “pimps” in order to prop up the vile “pimps and hos” myth is utterly reprehensible.

To Protect and Serve (August Updates)

San Diego cops use “sex trafficking” as an excuse to send a SWAT team to a strip club:

A manager at Cheetahs strip club says his dancers felt violated by police who photographed them almost nude…10 officers swarmed the building with guns and bulletproof vests, interrupting business for a couple of hours…to make sure all 30 dancers had proper permits and were in compliance…

Don’t Take My Word For It

Male delusions about sex work start extra-early in Sweden:  “Swedish police have received a report that three underage boys [as young as ten] speaking bad German tried to sell sex to women at a busy commuter hub in central Sweden…

Not for Everybody

Though Meg Munoz had a very bad time as a sex worker and for a while supported prohibition, she eventually recognized the harm it creates:

…Poorly conducted, [biased]…research needs to stop being used as the foundation for fundraising…the refusal to have sex work acknowledged as real work…has all but halted any civil discourse…Allowing moral biases to dictate policy is dangerous for those who are there by choice and force…

Above the Law Deon Nunlee

No, you lying asshole, it’s exactly what police officers do, which is why this is the second most common subtitle on the blog:

…while police responded to [a] domestic violence call, one of the officers allegedly took the woman into an upstairs bedroom and sexually assaulted her…Deon Nunlee has been charged…Detroit Police Chief James Craig said…“This is an anomaly.  This is not what our police officers do”…

In fact, here’s another in the same city:Geoffrey Townsend

A former Detroit police officer who was convicted of criminal sexual conduct involving participants in his boot camp for misbehaving teens is being sued by two of the victims…Geoffrey Townsend…began making unwelcome sexual advances [eventually culminating in rape when one]…victim was 13 years old…and…the…[other] 16…

And it’s not limited to the US, eitherScott Andrew Terry

[Durham, Ontario police Constable Scott Andrew Terry] sexually exploited [a 16-year-old girl] …with whom he first came into contact after she was busted for shoplifting in May of 2000.  Instead of filing charges…he…[offered] her a rental room in his house…[then] began making advances which…escalated to nude photos, sexual touching and eventually rape…“in exchange for the rent”…

First They Came for the Hookers… 

This dumb story about dumb strip-club restrictions in Chicago is, as you might expect, mostly just dumb.  But these comments from anti-whore zealot Bob Fioretti venture into a higher realm of dumbness:  “we have an underlying social problem.  Between 15,000 and 25,000 women a day engage in prostitution…in this city.  That underground activity undermines us a city — a world-class city…”  I’ll bet you didn’t know we were so dangerous, or that roughly 4% of the adult female population of Chicago were whores.

Higher Education (TW3 #23)

Unlike the last time we saw this, these teachers are actually qualified:

An enterprising association of sex workers in Barcelona has angered some of Spain’s most prominent feminists by offering an “intro to prostitution” course…at a cost of €45…the four-hour intensive course for aspiring sex workers was held last month by the Asociación de Profesionales del Sexo…Lidia Falcón…[who] has spent years fighting to have prostitution [criminalized] in Spain…said…the problem with the course lies in its underlying suggestion that some women are working in the profession out of their own free will…

So Falcón wants the course banned because it blatantly disproves her lies.

Imagination Pinned Down

Though the social climate which led to the Satanic Panic had been building for years, it was the McMartin Preschool hysteria that really launched it.  Now that it’s a generation in the past, even media outlets like the New York Times which fully embrace “sex trafficking” hysteria recognize its earlier incarnation for what it was.  Here’s a good retrospective called “McMartin Preschool: Anatomy of a Panic”; watch it with the current hysteria in mind and note the many parallels.

The Widening Gyre

If “authorities” don’t want stupid myths about women being abducted spreading around, they sure have a strange way of showing it:

[A rumor] warns of attempts to abduct women and girls in broad daylight at crowded shopping centers.  It warns that a new gang initiation requires members to kidnap, rape and beat womenBig Pimp and then dump them in parking lots.  For years, authorities have tried to keep such messages from spreading, debunking their claims as urban myths…

To clarify:  Women being abducted by gangs for quick rape = “right up there with Bigfoot”, but women abducted by gangs for years of captivity and sexual slavery = 100% credible.

South of the Border

In Mexico, a respected advocate is arrested as a “pimp” for helping sex workers organize:

…the recent arrest of Alejandra Gil…[is due to] new legislation, which…conflates sex work with human trafficking…Gil has worked tirelessly for the human rights of sex workers for many years…Laws and policies that target “third parties” under the premise of “protecting” sex workers, increase our vulnerability to abuse and exploitation, and create real barriers for sex workers organising…

Bottleneck

Considering that more than 90% of whores prefer to work illegally than submit to licensing, how well do you think this colossally stupid Italian law will work?

…prostitution will be permitted in private houses, subject to certain conditions, including the use of condoms…the draft law, which was presented…by…Maria Spillabotte…includes the issuance of a licence, stating that the holder is free of sexually transmitted diseases and confirming that a payment has been made…of €6,000 for a full-time licence or half that amount for part-time work…Prostitutes will also be required to get a certificate of mental fitness.  “This is a fundamental way of getting women away from coercion,” says Spillabotte.  “During an interview, the specialist will be able to tell if the girl is being forced into prostitution or if it is her free choice”…

That Old Black Magic

Patrick RockThe Sharjah Police…arrested an Arab woman and a man for forcing women into prostitution and engaging in black magic…

Buried Truth

When a politician obsesses about “protecting children from porn”, this is usually the reason:  “A senior aide to David Cameron resigned…the day before being arrested on allegations relating to child abuse images.  Patrick Rock…was involved in drawing up the government’s policy for…online pornography filters…

Between the Ears (TW3 #133)

This article on “Why Viagra Ruined Sex Work” quotes a few ladies whose names regular readers may recognize:

…“I wouldn’t say ED drugs are the worst thing, but they are really annoying,” laughed…Jolene Parton…“it…makes it harder for the client to come.”  Anna Gristina…dubbed [it]…“The working girl’s worst nightmare come true…It went from wham-bam, thank you ma’am,’ to ‘Oh my god, can you just finish, man’”…Amanda Brooks…says…men become obsessed with having an erection at the expense of any enjoyment for anyone…

It Looks Good On Paper (TW3 #311)

Texas joins the states arresting people to force them into “diversion” programs:  “The Corpus Christi Police…conducted a ‘Jane Sting’…in conjunction with the Red Cord Diversion Program…all six arrested persons were signed up to participate…rather than have criminal charges immediately applied.”  Yes, they actually referred to sex workers as “janes”.

The Crumbling Dam (TW3 #315)

Joyce Arthur hits it out of the park with this satire:

In a bold move aimed at protecting workers from exploitation while on the job, the government today passed a new law that criminalizes most employers and customers…Law and Order Minister Punter MacCunny…pointed out that 95 per cent of people hate their jobs and want out, according to a new government-commissioned study…Police welcomed the new law, which gives them sweeping new enforcement powers to target the huge increase in organized crime.  According to Det. Sgt. Billy Clubber, head of the RCMP’s new Slave Save Squad, “We’ll be cracking down on slavery rings, basically any place where workers are bribed with wages to provide services”…The law now designates employers and customers as “pimps” and “johns,” respectively…

Long Spoon (TW3 #351)

Reason’s video on condom criminalization specifically refers to the Human Rights Watch report condemning the practice in New Orleans:

Ladies of the Night

Saith Dr. Brooke Magnanti in The Telegraph:

It’s an unusual move to go from policy and social commentary to fiction, especially as the stories cover a range of genres from romance to crime to sci-fi.  And yet it works.  The eye for detail that fans of Maggie’s non-fiction writing appreciate is well played here.  She invents worlds with ease and populates them with thought-provoking, yet never two-dimensional, women and men.  If you love plots with twists, she has them to spare.  (If you’re not into twists, or women who aren’t always whiter than white, probably best to stay away.)  And the cover art by acclaimed cartoonist and Louis Riel author Chester Brown is wonderful.

She also reviews Daddy by Madison Young and Playing the Whore by Melissa Gira Grant.

The Course of a Disease (TW3 #410)

Sex columnist Suzi Godson presents “10 Things You Need to Know Before You Support the Swedish Model of Sex Work” in response to the new push by UK prohibitionists.  It’s not anything new for readers of this blog, but it’s possible ammo for online discussions you may get involved in.

Traffic Jam (TW3 #410)

Dominique Roe-Sepowitz answers the many criticisms of Project ROSE by denying them to Christian Post after refusing interviews with mainstream reporters.  And if you imagine the denials are substantive or backed by facts, think again:  her entire rationale for cooperating with cops to railroad people and deny them lawyers is, “sex-work…is against the law.”  Meanwhile, in last week’s other installment of “Traffic Jam”, a demonstration of the motivation behind the fakery:

A study of advertising placed during the recent Super Bowl in New Jersey suggests the volume of sex trafficking that will occur when the event comes to Arizona in 2015 will likely exceed the ability of any one law enforcement agency to address.  Phoenix Police Lt. James Gallagher, who co-authored the study…said law enforcement must coordinate to combat sex trafficking during major events…

In other words, “give us more money and power!”  Here’s a Storify of the fun several of us had with this mess last Saturday.

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Enough! or Too much!  –  William Blake

As I said in my column of December 9th, there always seems to be an explosion of interesting news articles at the end of the year, and here are seven more updates.  After today, I’m officially done with this sort of thing until January!

Recognition (August 19th, 2010)

In this early post I discussed the awkwardness which results when an escort discovers that she knows a client in real life, but none of the examples I gave can compare with this UPI story from December 3rd:

…Titus Ncube of Bulawayo [Zimbabwe] said he called for a prostitute to come to the hotel room in which he was staying while having marital problems and was shocked when his 20-year-old daughter arrived…Ncube said he collapsed to [the] floor upon recognizing his daughter, who quickly fled, crying.  “I am sorry for what I did,” Ncube said.  “I spoke to my wife and daughter.  I apologized for my actions as I just wanted my family back.  My daughter has stopped doing what she was doing and is going back to school next year.  My marital problems are not over, but we have a counselor who is helping us to get over this most difficult period”…

R.I.P Bob Guccione (October 26th, 2010)

In this article I pointed out that men’s magazine publishers have “to be given credit for pushing the envelope and helping to advance the cause of sexual liberty in the US by bringing both porn and frank discussion of sexual topics (including prostitution) into the mainstream.” Now a new book by Mike Edison explores the history of American men’s magazines in depth so as to prove that assertion, and the author promotes it with “How Sex Magazines Made The World A Better Place” in the December 7th Huffington Post.

Good Fantasy, Bad Reality (October 27th, 2010)

From the Jackson, Mississippi Clarion-Ledger of December 12th:

A truck driver claims his prostitute fiancee suffocated as they celebrated their engagement with a meth and bondage sex party.  Then he drove from California to Mississippi with the corpse in the cab…and set fire to the truck – with himself and the body inside.  Mark Andrew Rice pleaded guilty to arson and desecrating a corpse and was sentenced Monday to six years in prison…[with] two years…suspended for time served.

Rice, 49…met [Natasha] Carpenter at a truck stop in Texas.  He fell in love after several encounters…and [gave] her an engagement ring…[on] Sept. 15, 2009.  As part of their celebration in Barstow, Calif., Carpenter agreed to let him bind…and…gag…her…When he found her dead, Rice panicked and bought “all the meth his dealer had” and drove to…[Mississippi, where he] planned to say goodbye to his family and kill himself…[but they] took a gun away from him so he climbed into the rig and set it ablaze.  Deputies eventually pulled him from the burning truck…Hancock County authorities believe he would’ve been charged with manslaughter or worse had she died in Mississippi…Prosecutors in San Bernardino County, Calif..said there was “insufficient evidence to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.”

It’s really quite a sad story, since he seems to have genuinely loved her; I’m guessing the methamphetamine increased her metabolism so that she suffocated more quickly than he allowed for.

Barbie (December 5th, 2010)

In this column I pointed out that “People with a lot of free time and more math skills than sense have published complicated calculations showing that at 1/6 scale, Barbie would be 5’9” tall, with measurements of 36”-18”-33” and a weight of 110# and that “The campaign to suppress or neuter Barbie derives from the same repressions and insecurities as the campaign to ban porn and abolish prostitution…”  And just as neofeminists aren’t too scrupulous about getting their facts right with regard to porn or prostitution, so they aren’t in their Barbie-attacks either:

Galia Slayen…[told NBC’s “Today” show that] she first created [a 6’ tall] Barbie-like figure — with a 39-inch bust, 18-inch waist and 33-inch hips…for the first National Eating Disorders Awareness week in 2007 while she was [an anorexic] high school student in Portland [Oregon]…”I’m not blaming Barbie [for my illness] — she’s one small factor, an environmental factor,” Slayen said.  “I’m blond and blue-eyed and I figured that was what I was supposed to look like.  She was my idol.  It impacted the way I looked at myself.”

The grotesquely distorted microcephalic figure in the picture (which, as you will note, bears little resemblance to a real Barbie doll) is a perfect symbolic representation of the grotesquely distorted “prostitute” caricatures described by people like Melissa Farley, except that Slayen’s distortion of the math isn’t nearly as severe as that practiced by Farley et al.

Welcome To Our World (January 20th, 2011)

It’s funny how efforts to suppress consensual activities always end up looking a lot alike, as in this December 5th story from the Associated Press:

…Lithuania’s capital [Vilnius] recently introduced a ban on panhandling that not only punishes those who beg but those who give, with fines of up to 2,000 litas ($770).  Outraged rights groups say the ban spells misery for the needy in one of Europe’s poorest countries, as winter kicks in and economic turmoil spreads across the continent…”Begging is a human right,” said Linas Kukuraitis, director of the Lithuanian chapter of Catholic charity group Caritas.  “It was there long before cities emerged.  There have always been those who begged and those who helped them.”

But Vilnius Mayor Arturas Zuokas says the ban will help beggars to find more sustainable ways to make a living.  “Giving money to people on the street is wrong,” Zuokas said.  “By doing this we doom them to stay there forever”…police…are not issuing fines just yet.  Instead they are handing out cards to beggars with addresses and phone numbers of charities and homeless shelters.  Stricter enforcement is expected to begin in January.  The mayor himself rode his bicycle…looking for violators of the ban.  Zuokas made a splash on YouTube earlier this year by riding an armored personnel carrier over a luxury car as a publicity stunt for his crackdown on illegal parking…He said there are plenty of homeless shelters for the poor in Vilnius, “but they stay on the streets because it is a kind of business.”

…Some Asian countries have laws targeting both beggars and almsgivers but European…laws typically focus only on [beggars] and aren’t always strictly enforced.  However, police in Ireland cracked down on panhandlers this year…[and] Austria’s Styria province…introduced a begging ban in February.  None of them punish  almsgivers.  By contrast, Norway, one of the world’s richest countries, abolished a more than 100-year-old vagrancy law in 2005, making it legal to beg in the streets.  It’s also legal in Sweden, Germany, Spain and Portugal…

Note that Sweden and Norway officially believe that beggars have more right to self-determination and making a living in a way that suits them than women do.

Elephant in the Parlor (October 23rd, 2011)

A politician being caught with a prostitute isn’t really news, but for the prostitute to expose the politician is.  This one’s from the December 6th Huffington Post:

The…married mayor [of Medford, New Jersey], accused on a website two months ago of having sex with a prostitute at a California hotel, [has] resigned…The anonymous allegation against…Chris Myers…included a photo of…him in his underwear…[The accuser] claimed to be a prostitute…[whom] Myers contacted…through a male escort website…Myers paid him $500 but didn’t fulfill promises of a car and other gifts…[and that] the broken promise was the reason he was taking his story public.  The website was [soon] taken down…[and though] Myers…refused to comment on the allegations [he] didn’t deny them…His resignation letter…did not mention the scandal…

Saint Death (November 1st, 2011)

The December 10th Miami Herald featured this article on persecution of Umbanda, another syncretism of Christianity with African and Indian beliefs.  The crusade is largely driven by Pentecostal Christians who…wait for it…want to “save” believers from their choices:

…many Brazilians…view Umbanda…as…witchcraft…In many parts of the country, [it] was outlawed until the 1950s, and in the following three decades believers were supposed to register with the police…Brazil’s…1989 constitution enshrined [religious] freedom…but…followers say official disdain and intense prejudice still put their lives and shrines at risk…[they] report on average 100…physical or verbal attacks a year…in…Rio de Janeiro alone…Cases…have increased along with the…power of Pentecostal religions…”There is always a discourse of ‘taking them from the hands of the devil'”…[theologian Fernando] Altemeyer said…Such tensions have come into relief in Sao Goncalo, where Mayor Aparecida Panniset, an outspoken Pentecostal, has been accused of failing to protect Umbanda sites, or even destroying them.  In October, she ignored pleas by religious tolerance activists to stop the demolition of the house where the first Umbanda rituals were held in 1908.  She also turned down requests to meet the activists…then moved ahead with efforts to raze another traditional Umbanda house…

One Year Ago Today

The Swedish Pimpocracy” shows how the government of Sweden exploits women to “implement a plain old-fashioned tyranny while hiding under the cloak of ‘enlightenment’.”

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You and I will meet again,
When we’re least expecting it,
One day in some far off place,
I will recognize your face.
  –  Tom Petty, “You and I Will Meet Again”

Everyone has had the experience of running into somebody one hasn’t seen in a while, often in the most unusual of circumstances, and it’s no different for whores.  The only difference is that, since most of us don’t usually advertise our profession to casual acquaintances, these meetings can be rather awkward or even amusing.  Perhaps in a large city such encounters would be rare, but in a city as small as New Orleans they happen with sufficient frequency to deserve writing about.

Sometimes, one encounters clients in public later, and their reaction generally depends on the circumstances.  If a former customer is alone he may smile or wink, and on rare occasions I’ve even had one ask for my business card again, but if he’s with his wife you can bet he’ll just go right past with no reaction (unless it’s to speed up his pace).  In my July 16th column I related the story of encountering a young couple whom I had recently visited parked right next to me in a Wal-Mart parking lot, and in one particular instance a client recognized me without remembering how he did so. As I’ve mentioned before, all my medical professionals knew what I did for a living because I felt it was only right to tell them; I was particularly friendly with my dentist’s receptionist, a very pretty girl who had admitted to fantasizing about working as a call girl and often had questions for me.  Anyhow, I was coming in for a dental appointment, and a gentleman who was leaving asked me, “Have we met before?”

“It’s possible, but I can’t recall,” I said.

“You just look so very familiar!” he continued.

“People often say that to me; perhaps I just have that kind of face.”

“But I could swear I know you!”

“Well, maybe you saw me in a store or something,” I suggested.

“I guess that must be it,” he said, then bid my receptionist friend goodbye and left.

“That was so strange, the way he kept insisting he knew you,” she said.

“He does,” I replied, “he just doesn’t remember how.”

She was about to ask, then her eyes got big and her mouth dropped open.  I nodded, and she broke into a big smile; normally I would never divulge that information, but because he had made such a big deal of it I figured it was better to admit the truth and ask for her silence than to risk her mentioning it to the other office girls and having someone put two and two together.

But this sort of encounter is inconsequential compared to the awkwardness of being called by a client one knows socially.  It’s not so bad when the acquaintance was casual and/or a long time in the past; for instance, we had a regular for years who had been a schoolmate of my cousin Jeff’s.  I had met him a couple of times and remembered his distinctive French name, but had always avoided seeing him just in case; then one night he asked me to describe myself and when I did he said he wanted to see me.  I decided to risk it, but there was no difficulty; if he ever for a moment associated the glamorous call girl who came to him that night with the skinny 14-year-old he had met in passing two decades before, he gave no sign.

There was another case which could have been really awkward, but worked out for the best in the end.  He was a recently-divorced man only a few years older than I was who had taken me for the whole evening; we went to dinner and the symphony, then back to his room, and were getting along famously.  It turned out we had a great deal in common, and were both science-fiction fans who had attended UNO around the same time.  Then suddenly I stepped on a mine; I mentioned a casual acquaintance of Jeff’s (I’ll call him “Gary”) who orchestrated a regular Friday night role-playing-game session I had attended a few times, and to my surprise he replied, “But I’m Gary!”  I pointed out he had given me a different name, and he explained that since he was a “Junior”, he had gone by his middle name when he was younger but started using his first name in the professional world.  I looked at him closely and realized that he was indeed the overgrown boy I had known, less baby fat and half of his hair, and with contact lenses rather than thick glasses.  I decided to take the plunge and reminded him of exactly who I was, adding, “You see, if you had known then what you know now, you could’ve had me for free!”

We both laughed, and he pointed out that at the time he was much more interested in older women, and would have thought of me as nothing but jail bait.  I remembered the specific woman he had been interested in; she was the wife of a young professor and they had an “open marriage”, which even back then I recognized as an invitation to disaster.  As in the other two such marriages I had encountered, the wife had become involved with an easily-dominated boy in his late teens and eventually left her husband for the boyfriend (in this case, my client).  The results of this ill-conceived alliance would have been predictable to anyone who had been on Earth for a few decades, but not to a naïve university student such as he was at the time; his ten-year-older wife completely dominated him, and though the poor man eventually escaped her he was badly damaged by the experience.  The castrating bitch had apparently expected a green lad to perform like her more experienced ex in bed, and became abusive when he failed to satisfy her (which had been often).  As a result, he was badly inhibited, and though he had no trouble achieving erection he had immense difficulty reaching orgasm; it took well over an hour of constant stimulation, gentle coaxing and repeated reassurances that I was there for his pleasure rather than vice-versa to finally enable him to achieve the release he hadn’t had with a woman in literally years.  So in this case, my prior acquaintance with a client served as a tool rather than an obstacle; because I remembered his ex-wife and the considerable gossip about their relationship I was able to achieve the kind of rapport with him which might otherwise have taken several sessions.  Our previous connection, however tenuous, served to decrease his nervousness about seeing a professional and thus relaxed him enough that he could trust me and allow me to guide him to a much-needed release.

It’s definitely not usually that way.  On another occasion Gilda gave me a name I recognized well, since he was the (now-retired) chief deputy sheriff of the rural parish (county) in which I had grown up; I especially remembered him from the time he had tried to shift the blame to me for a traffic accident in which a local politician had run a stop sign and totaled my car.  But I am nothing if not a consummate professional, so I called him anyhow, and the conversation went something like this:

“Hi, Mr. D_____, this is Maggie; the agency said you were looking for a girl who would go out to {Ourtown}, but there’s a slight problem.”

“What’s that?”

“I know who you are, and you may remember me as well.”  My family had some minor political connections and I knew for a fact he knew my mother on sight.

“I’m retired now,” he said defensively, “I guess I shouldn’t have called, but I’m recently divorced, so I’m very lonely.”

“I understand; you don’t need to explain yourself to me.  I’m not the one in the business of persecuting people for consensual behaviors.”  He then broke into a flurry of excuses, which I interrupted with “Relax, your secret is safe with me.  I’m not going to tell anyone you called; that would be highly unethical.  I just don’t think it’s particularly wise for us to see each other.”  And he did indeed relax; in fact, he thanked me for my kindness, said he knew I was right about the inadvisability of going through with the call, and bid me good night.

The most awkward case of all, however, involved Karla.  As I mentioned before she was quite young, about 21, and lived in the suburbs north of Lake Pontchartrain; because it was a bit of a drive many girls from that area preferred to stay home on weekdays and take whatever calls came in from there, rather than drive into town to await calls which might not come if the night were slow as they sometimes were.  So one afternoon I described her to a gentleman who sounded quite interested, only I could never have predicted Karla’s reaction to his name.  She asked me to repeat it, then checked the phone number and squeaked,  “Oh my God, I can’t see him!  He’s my friend’s dad!”

Clearly, there was nothing to do but call him back; since there was no other girl working there that day I just had to tell him Karla was temporarily unavailable.  Unfortunately, he wouldn’t be put off; he had liked her description and asked when she would be available.  I then had little choice but to be honest with him: “Sir, the young lady can’t come to see you because she already knows you and feels it would be too awkward.”  If I had hoped for him to accept that I was sorely disappointed; he reacted like a kid caught stealing the milk money by a strict nun.  Despite my reassurances that she could not ever reveal him without also revealing herself, he refused to be placated and demanded I tell him who she was.  “Please, sir, don’t be absurd!  Surely you understand that I can’t give you that kind of information!” He responded that it wasn’t “fair” that she know him and not vice-versa, and I let him know politely but firmly what I thought of his kindergarten notions of “fairness” where my girls were concerned.  Needless to say, he never called us again.

In all of these cases, the acquaintance was a personal one; things go a bit differently when the client is known not only to the girl, but to the general public, as we will discuss tomorrow.

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