In the United States prostitution for the most part is illegal. Around the world though is practically the opposite. Why is prostitution so unacceptable in the US? The US is one of the few countries in the world where prostitution is illegal. When I say for the most part I mean that in some counties in Nevada prostitution is legal. Downfalls of Legal Prostitution
Prostitution is legal (with some restrictions) in Canada, most all of Europe including England, France, Wales, and Denmark. Most of South America including most of Mexico (often in special zones), Israel, Australia, New Zeeland and many other countries. It is either legal or very tolerated in most all of Asia and even Iran. Rapes and Violence
Estimates indicate that there are anywhere from 100,000 to 500,000 prostitutes in the US. All countries have sizable domestic populations of women engaged in prostitution, ranging from .25 to 1.5 percent of the population in Asia and the United States (Henslin, J. 2003). Much larger percentages of men, however, are paying for sex. Ninety five percent of Thai men and seventy percent of men living in London have at some point in their life have purchased sex (White, L. 2004). Also large numbers of the men abuse the women they interact with, indeed violence is common to the life of a prostitute. In Canada, women and girls in prostitution had a mortality rate 40 times higher than the national average. In the United States, it is estimated that seventy percent of prostitutes annually experience multiple rapes, some women are raped once a week.
Minors Involved in Prostitution
Large numbers of women engaged in prostitution began as minors having been tricked or coerced into such by parents, traffickers, partners and pimps. In the United States the average age for entering prostitution lies around fourteen, while in Asia it is well below eighteen. Similarly, it is estimated that over a quarter of prostitutes in urban areas in the United States, Cambodia, Jamaica and India are minors (Klinger, K 2003). Hopes of Making Money
Along with being manipulated as children, poverty is the primary economic incentive that drives women to participate in prostitution, whether directly, or through following the false promises of employment offered by sex traffickers. It is reported, for example, that eighty five percent of Russian women are unemployed, and many of those who have jobs are expected to sleep with their employers (Nelson, W. 2004). Hopes of economic independence at best quickly turn into highly exploitative situations, and at the worst turns into indentured servitude. Pimps
It is estimated that ninety percent of prostitution is controlled by pimps, who receive between fifty and one hundred percent of the revenue generated by prostitutes. One pimp/bar owner in Japan, for example, makes US$85,000 monthly from prostituting trafficked women, who receive zero profit (Manahan, D. 2003).
Money Going Back to Male Family Heads
In countries that serve as depots for sex-tourist, the relative incomes for prostitution can be very high, resulting in families selling their daughters to pimps and traffickers, the sex sector generates from two to fourteen percent of GDP in South Asian countries. The girls involved receive little of this money as it is sent back to male family heads in rural areas. The International Labor Organization reports that in Thailand "close to US$300 million is transferred annually to rural families by women working in the sex sector, a sum that exceeds the budgets of government-funded development programs. In the United States, girls involved in prostitution can generate over five hundred dollars an evening, but usually receive less than five percent of such, from their pimps (Nelson, W. 2004). Public Opinion
Despite laws prohibiting it the world’s oldest profession thrives in the US and other countries around the world. Despite...
References: Gale, G. (2002). A cargo of exploitable souls. The Economist, 36, 6-7. Retrieved January 12, 2005 from Infotrac database
Henslin, J. (2003). Social Problems (6th ed.). New Jersey: Prentice Hall
Klinger, K. (2003). Prostitution: humanism and a woman’s choice. The Humanist, 63, 16-20. Retrieved February 20, 2005 from Infotrac database
Manahan, D. (2003). Prostitution and identity. The Economist, 44, 451-452. Retrieved February 15, 2005 from Infotrac database
Nelson, W. (2004). Prostitution: a community solution alternative. Corrections Today, 66, 88-92. Retrieved February 12, 2005 from Infotrac database
White, L. (2004). True confessions. Journal of Women’s History, 15, 142-146. Retrieved March 1, 2005, from Infotrac database
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