Is a hairdresser selling her hands?
Is a construction worker selling his muscles?
This assumes that sex and sexuality is a male creation that denigrates women. It assumes that women lose something when they exchange sex for money. It ignores that men are sex workers too, and it takes away the sex workers agency - as if they have no control in the transaction and are simply victims of male exploitation.
Isn’t prostitution an inherently dangerous occupation because it involves being alone with a stranger who more often than not, is stronger than you?
How about showing people houses for sale or providing lessons in people’s homes?
For that matter, how about having someone show up to purchase something you’ve listed on Craigslist?
Sex work is no more dangerous than any of these activities. In fact, sex workers are more likely to engage in MORE rigid screening of their clients than other people in these other scenarios. What makes sex work dangerous is having to hide it, and not being able to report to the police.
How many clients are going to report an underage girl who appears to be abused to the police when they could be jailed for seeking out sexual services? Sex workers can’t even report domestic violence without fear of legal scrutiny, and the criminalization of prostitution has created the perfect playground for bad cops, predators, and violent men to prey on vulnerable women. Persecuting the exploited does exactly NOTHING to hamper human trafficking.
Ashley Masi was a 24 years old and a mother of 3. Just like hundreds of thousands of US sex workers, Ashley engaged in sex work to support her family. Ashley's blood is on the hands of law enforcement and politicians that stole away her right “to equal protection under the law."
There is a solution. The Erotic Service Providers Legal Education and Research Project has filed a complaint with the United States District Court challenging California’s current anti-prostitution laws, Penal code 647(b) Here is how you can help support this expansion of sexaul privacy rights.