Archive for May 13th, 2011

The powerless worship Luck and Fate.  –  Mason Cooley

Back in August I wrote a column about Friday the Thirteenth in which I pointed out that since Friday is Venus’ day and 13 the number of the moon (and thus the traditional number of witches in a coven), we whores should consider it a day of good luck for us even if superstitious Christians think of it as bad luck for them.  As I said in that column, I don’t really believe in luck; I think we largely make our own luck.  However,

…considering that the reasons for fear of this day are so closely related to the reasons our profession is maligned and suppressed, perhaps whores and those who support our rights should make every Friday the Thirteenth a day to speak out in favor of full decriminalization and an end to the institutionalized persecution of prostitutes.  I therefore ask my readers to start a new tradition today; speak out for us to at least one person who will listen, or if you’re not comfortable doing that openly at least make an anonymous post on some other website in defense of us, or containing a link to this column.  Let’s start getting the word out that whores are no different from other women, and that “a woman’s right to choose what to do with her own body” is more than just a euphemism for abortion rights.

It’s been a tough nine months for hookers; though the intelligent, computer-literate segment of the population is clearly in favor of decriminalization by a comfortable margin and more public figures (including judges and police) are daring to question the status quo, we’ve also seen aggressive misinformation campaigns from the trafficking fanatics (aided and abetted by the mainstream media despite the inability of their claims to stand up to even the most cursory examination).  Governments all over the Western world are beginning to recognize in the “Swedish Model” a way to infantilize and control women while convincing the fanatical neofeminists and their brainwashed disciples that they’re actually advancing the cause of women’s rights; in the United States, this is being combined with strategies to enrich police departments and governments by robbing men accused of hiring or assisting prostitutes.  And though a number of intelligent people have come forward to support our right to control our own bodies, the public prefers to listen to empty-headed celebrities like Mira Sorvino, Demi Moore and Ashley Judd, who make a good living in the public branch of our shared profession but wish to suppress the freedom of (or at least destroy the income of) those of us who prefer the private branch.

A number of advocates are working to respond to the lies, propaganda and misinformation wherever we find them, but we can only do so much and we’re often outnumbered by the brainwashed zombie slaves of the “trafficking” witch-hunters.  Also, we’re often accused of distorting facts to make ourselves look good, and no matter how assiduously we work to present a balanced view this is a natural and credible accusation against anyone who advocates for some issue which directly concerns her.  That’s why allies are so important; it’s much harder for the prohibitionists to shout down people who don’t have a dog in the fight, but merely support prostitutes’ rights on moral grounds.  Every Friday the Thirteenth I will ask my readers, especially those of you who aren’t yourselves sex workers, to speak up for us in some way; talk about the issue with someone who will listen, make a post on a discussion board, comment on a news story which spreads disinformation, or even just post a link to this column.  If you aren’t confident in your ability to debate, even a simple phrase like “I think adult women should have the right to decide why and with whom they want to have sex” or “everyone has the right to equal protection under the law” might have a tiny but important impact on those who overhear.  Because in the final analysis, they’re the ones we have to convince; rational people already support some type of prostitution-law reform and fanatics cannot be convinced by argument because their minds are already made up, but the silent majority – the fence-sitters and swing-voters, the ones who answer “unsure” or “no comment” on polls – are the ones who can and must be made to understand that we are not intrinsically different from other women and deserve the same freedoms and protections that non-harlots take for granted.

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