A report drawn up for the All Parliamentary Group on Prostitution recommends that UK citizens who pay for sex abroad should be prosecuted for doing so. It also recommends the UK Parliament legislate to make paying for sex a criminal offence while leaving sex workers free to work. This is predicated on the belief that prostitutes are vulnerable and should not be criminalised, while those who pay for sex are exploiters and, as drivers of demand should be subject to criminal sanctions. Most sex workers believe that criminilising clients will make their lives less safe. For the article please visit http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/love-sex/sex-industry/sex-tourists-who-pay-for-prostitutes-abroad-should-face-prosecution-in-uk-a6888351.html
An interesting review of “Lost Girls” in which the author, Robert Colker details the murder of 5 young sex workers and the police’s lack of interest in protecting sex workers from violent clients. The author of the article leans towards the view that the best way to protect prostitutes is by criminalising the “Johns” (clients. The majority of the comments following on from the piece endorse the Nordic model under which the client who pays for sex is criminalised while the sex worker is not. However a number of other commenters, including sex workers believe that the article lacks neutrality and is a thinly veiled pro-criminalisation of the client piece of propaganda. Such criminalisation will not help sex workers but will render their occupations more dangerous these commenters contend.
For the article please visit http://observer.com/2013/07/getting-off-easy-how-prostitutes-became-the-new-expendables/
Kevin Morris is an author. For his Amazon author’s page please visit http://www.amazon.co.uk/K.-Morris/e/B00CEECWHY/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0
Today’s Daily Telegraph carries an article entitled “343 French Sign Don’t Touch My Whore Petition”. The petition was prompted by a proposal, due to be debated by the French parliament which, if passed would impose heavy fines on those who pay for sex. Opposition to the proposal is summed up by one signatory of the petition who said
“To want to abolish prostitution seems to me as dumb as wanting to abolish rain.”
French feminists are strong supporters of the proposal to criminalise those who pay for sex and have expressed their outrage at the petition. According to some (but not all feminists) prostitution always constitutes the exploitation of women by men. Men have no right to “purchase” ladies and those who do so ought to be criminalised in order to deter others from exploiting women. This perspective underpins the Swedish Law on Prostitution which imposes a fine and/or imprisonment on those who pay for sex in Sweden. Sex workers are not criminalised on the basis that they are the exploited party and one assumes that proponents of the French legislation wish to criminalise clients rather than sex workers.
Opponents of the Swedish legislation and similar laws contend that consenting adults ought not to be criminalised merely because two or more adults decide to enter into a voluntary arrangement for the provision of sexual services. Prostitution is, according to this view a free choice for many adults who enter into the profession. It may not constitute most women’s first choice of career. It is for all that a choice freely entered into by the majority of adults engaged in the sex industry. Proponents of this view argue that the state should concentrate it’s resources on tackling forced prostitution rather than interfering in the lives of consenting adults.
To supporters of the criminalisation of those who pay for sex there is no such thing as choice in prostitution. People enter prostitution out of desperation (frequently after having suffered sexual abuse as children). Consequently those who pay for sex are perpetuating that abuse and should be fined or imprisoned for exploiting vunnerable individuals.
In my story, The First Time we meet Becky, a young graduate who enters the world of prostitution as a professional escort in order to clear her debts and avoid the threat of homelessness. There is no brutal pimp compelling Becky to enter prostitution so on one level it can be argued that she becomes a sex worker of her own free will. On the other hand the fear of losing the roof over her head acts as a powerful incentive for Becky to become a prostitute so although she is not subject to physical or verbal compulsion Becky is, it might be argued compelled by the dire financial situation in which she finds herself to enter the sex industry. She is, in effect left with Hobsons Choice which is, in reality no choice at all. Against this it can be contended that many people faced with severe financial difficulties do not go down the route taken by Becky. Therefore Becky does, in the final analysis still make a choice, she is not a mere victim of economic circumstance. For the Telegraph’s article please visit http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/france/10415267/343-French-sign-Dont-Touch-My-Whore-petition.html. For my Amazon author page please visit http://www.amazon.co.uk/K.-Morris/e/B00CEECWHY/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0
“To want to abolish prostitution seems to me as dumb as wanting to abolish rain.”
My book, Samantha is currently available free from Amazon. A reviewer of Samantha writes on amazon.co.uk as follows:
“This is an exciting story, well written with some good Liverpool background. The main characters are well brought to life. Samantha, the student from a
good background, drugged and date-raped by a pimp, seems credible.
Some of the strands haven’t been tied up at the end and maybe that’s just what the author intended.
The book is quite short and you can read it in one sitting. Because it is so readable you may want to do just that.
I recommend it.”
PS One or two pages seem to have got out of order but I’ve had this trouble before with Kindle”.
To see the review and download Samantha free from amazon.co.uk please visit http://www.amazon.co.uk/Samantha-ebook/dp/B00BL3CNHI.
On checking Samantha’s page today I came across the following review of my story on amazon.com:
“This is a well-written, enjoyable short story, with an ending that leaves something to the
imagination. Suspenseful, realistic and fairly easy to believe. The course of true love
certainly does not run straight….”.
To see the review on amazon.com or to download Samantha please visit http://www.amazon.com/product-reviews/B00BL3CNHI/ref=cm_cr_dp_syn_footer?k=Samantha&showViewpoints=1.
A couple of weeks ago I was browsing the Kindle store when I came across Iceberg Slim’s biography, Pimp: The Story of My Life (see http://www.amazon.co.uk/Pimp-The-Story-Life-ebook/dp/B005GK7LPG) which tells the story of how the author became one of America’s most notorious pimps. Slim ppulls no punches. The book is a no holes barred account of how Iceberg entered pimping, the people he met and of how he controlled his girls. I flinched as I read how Slim punished his first working girl, Joyce by whipping her with a wire coat hanger. The whipping had (from Slim’s perspective) the desired result as Joyce returned to the streets to sell her body.
Slim was brought up during the era of racial segregation which had a profound effect on his view of the world. As a young black man Slim saw pimping as being one of the few opportunities open to him to become rich. His mentor, Sweet Jones hates white people as a result of his father having been murdered by a white lynch mob and his mother having been raped by the same mob. Sweet tells Slim that black pimps where the early heroes who turned the tables on their former slave masters by becoming prosperous in pimping. It is ironic that Sweet and Slim fail to see that they themselves are slave owners of a kind and are perpetuating the practices of the former plantation owners (it is Sweet who recommends to Slim he keeps his girls in line by the use of practices including whipping with coat hangers). The slave holders of yester year would, no doubt have been proud of them!
As a child Slim’s mother has relationships with a number of unsuitable men including with Slim’s father who, at one point throws the child against the wall. The exception to this rule is the gentle Henry who dotes on both Slim and his mother. However Slim’s mother leaves Henry for another man, had she stayed with Henry who Slim clearly adores it is very possible that I wouldn’t have read Pimp as the author wouldn’t have entered the world of pimping.
On reading Pimp one wonders why the women Slim controlled put up with their treatment at the hands of Iceberg. Fear goes some way to explaining it, however this is not the only explanation. Working on the streets and frequently unobserved by Slim his ladies had many opportunities to escape. One or two of them did but many others did not. Ironically a number of the girls “loved” Slim and convinced themselves that their feelings where reciprocated which explains why they remained with him. In particular one girl sends Slim money while he is in prison (she could have stolen it but chose instead to sell his car, on Slim’s instructions and send the cash to him).
In the end it is the fear of dying in prison rather than any moral revulsion which leads Slim to exit pimping. There is, so far as I can see no wholehearted moral rejection of his former life but I haven’t read any of the interviews which he gave subsequently so perhaps I am wrong on that point.
If you want a comfortable bedtime read then Pimp by Iceberg Slim is not for you. However if you want to try and understand why a man might enter the world of pimping then this book makes a fascinating read.
In December 2012 I published The First Time, a collection of short stories. The main story, The First Time deals with Becky, a young graduate who enters the world of prostitution as a professional escort in order to pay off her credit card bill. I explore the consequences of Becky’s decision both for Becky and her fellow escort and friend Julie.
As with Becky the young student (I’m not sure whether this should be former student), Emma Gould enters the sex industry due to running up a large debt. However Emma’s story is fact while The First Time is fictional albeit based on extensive research into the world of sex work. With Becky it is her taste for the good things in life (expensive consumables and pricey restaurants) which cause her to enter into debt. In Emma’s case her problems stem from an addiction to alcohol.
The First Time deals with the world of outcall escorting (I.E. where a client pays for the escort to visit him (or her) in their home or hotel room. Escorting is, on the whole safe as escorts or their agencies check out via the phone book that people are who they claim to be prior to a sex worker visiting them. In contrast Emma Gould prostituted herself on the street which poses far more dangers. Street prostitutes are subject to far more acts of violence and, sadly, in some instances death than are outcall escorts. Emma survived to relate her experiences in the Daily Mail but many others haven’t.
For the article on Emma Gould please visit http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2307253/Pretty-student-Emma-Gould-admits-turning-prostitution-help-fund-alcohol-addiction.html. For my book, The First Time please see http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-First-Time-ebook/dp/B00AIK0DD6. For a review of my latest book, Samantha which tells the story of a young girl forced into prostitution in the city of Liverpool please visit http://www.amazon.co.uk/product-reviews/B00BL3CNHI/ref=dp_top_cm_cr_acr_txt?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1