Decriminalizing Prostitution

1663 Words 7 Pages
The oldest profession known to man is under debate across the globe. Between 60,000 and 80,000 sex workers are prosecuted each year in the United States. In much of the world, selling one’s body for sex is against the law but for over fifty countries like New Zealand and the Netherlands, prostitution is legal and is regulated by the government. These countries verify through statistics that decriminalizing the act of prostitution creates a much better environment for sex workers who are protected under labor laws, resulting in reduced violence, lower rates of human trafficking, and even promotes workers to find other career paths. Sex workers are walking the streets, posting on the web, and offering services in “underground brothels”. Love …show more content…
Others feel as though sex workers themselves are the victims, and point to human trafficking, slavery, and violence against prostitutes as evidence for this claim. (“Prostitution in the United States” 2). Donna M. Hughes, a professor at the University of Rhode Island who is a leading international researcher on human trafficking and activist for the anti-sexual violence and explosions movement, writes about why the laws in the United States on prostitution should not change. “Prostitution should not be legalized. Legalization means that the state imposes regulations under which women can be prostituted. In effect, regulation means that under certain conditions it is permissible to exploit and abuse women” (Hughes 1). EVE, (formally exploited voices, now educated), a non-profit organization composed of women previously involved in the sex industry who are dedicated to stopping violence against women in prostitution, writes in a recent report how the legalization of sex work would encourage …show more content…
However, according to HG.com, a government information site, “every year in the U.S., between 70,000 and 80,000 people are arrested for prostitution, costing taxpayers approximately $200 million” (HG.com). While prostitution is illegal in the United States, citizens spend an estimated 14.6 billion each year for sex services (havocscope.com). Clearly, prostitution is a major industry in American culture. Tracey Pierce Sonntag, an instructor at Eastern Michigan University, expresses the economic gain that would benefit the United States if prostitution was decriminalized in a her proposal argument essay "Case for Legalization of Prostitution” written in 2009. “The average annual income of an employee at one Nevada brothel working only one week per month is at least $100,000 (qtd. in Ayres). Based on this figure, each legally licensed sex worker would contribute more than $20,000 in federal income taxes per

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