Posts Tagged ‘All Shapes and Sizes’

Domestic violence prosecutions have little benefit to women and in fact can harm them.  –  Aya Gruber

Where Are the Protests? 

When people are really enslaved, the situation isn’t at all ambiguous:

…13 [Samoan] victims…were [enslav]ed…their passports were taken from them.  They were kept on a property surrounded by a high wire fence and could only leave or communicate with their family with permission.  If they broke the rules, they were assaulted, sometimes so badly that it resulted in scars.  When one teenage victim escaped, she was brought back in a car with her hands and wrists tied…Most worked long hours picking fruits from orchards, but they didn’t receive the money they had earned.  Instead, it was given to the man who had…lured them to New Zealand: a Samoan chief named Joseph Auga Matamata…[who h]as [been] sentenced to 11 years in jail for…human trafficking and…dealing in slaves…He was also ordered to pay 183,000 New Zealand dollars ($122,000) in reparations to his 13 victims to partly compensate them for the estimated 300,000 New Zealand dollars ($200,000) his family gained from his criminal acts…

Despite the clear descriptions of these people’s treatment in the article, CNN linked it to a video calling ordinary sex work “human trafficking in the US”.

Greeks Bearing Gifts

Amateurs are finally noticing that feminists have been in bed with the pigs for decades:

The notion that victims have a responsibility to [the state to conspire with] prosecut[ors against] their abusers is deeply entrenched in the legal system’s approach to domestic violence…feminists and [other] tough-on-crime types…[support] the arrest and jailing of domestic violence survivors…if they are deemed an obstacle to prosecution…increasingly, [reasonable people] are [pointing out] that police and prosecutors…don’t help in domestic violence situations and, instead, often hurt…studies…show survivors of domestic violence are less likely to report abuse when they think that will lead to an arrest and…police themselves are often the perpetrators of domestic and sexual violence, rendering them [useless] as a source of help…But [thanks to the “Violence Against Women Act” and similar laws]…arrest is…often mandatory…Aya Gruber…author of a recent book about the intersection of policing and feminism, says these policies ignore the fact that victims may be making a rational choice when they decline to testify against their abusers…By the 21st century, an increasing number of domestic violence arrests were of women, many of whom were victims themselves…around the same time, prosecutors and judges began to use [violence]…to force victims to testify against their will.  At least one [authoritarian] even suggested using guardianship laws to force women to comply with criminal prosecutions because such women lacked “independent judgment,” adding “a battered woman is so controlled that she has lost her autonomy”…

Traffic Circle

Debunkings of “sex trafficking” mythology are now becoming common:

All Shapes and Sizes (#834)

Why illustrate this at all if you’re just going to pixellate the images?

A British man whose penis fell off due to a severe blood infection had a new one built…on his arm…Malcolm MacDonald…suffered a horrific infection in his perineum that turned his fingers, toes and [penis] black…but his testicles remained intact…Professor David Ralph of London’s University College Hospital…said he could perform a…graft procedure…using a skin flap on the left arm of the right-handed man.  They created a urethra and installed two tubes inflated with a hand pump, allowing him to achieve an erection.  The shaft was then removed from his forearm, leaving the base, allowing it to form naturally as skin and tissue.  He is now waiting for it to be finally transferred to its proper location…

A Broker in Pillage (#1007)

Burying government in lawsuits is the only way to slow its depredations:

…[government] agents s[tole] more than $2 billion in cash from travelers in U.S. airports between 2000 and 2016, according to a new report by the Institute for Justicein…[one] case…Rustem Kazazi, a U.S. citizen who tried in 2018 to get on a plane to return to his native Albania…[was robbed of] $58,000 in cash…he was taking to repair a house he owned and possibly to buy another…by CBP agents…Then there’s the case of Anthonia Nwaorie, a Houston woman who had $41,000 in cash…earmarked for a children’s hospital in Nigeria [stolen from her]…there were no arrests made in more than two-thirds of all the cases…CBP isn’t the only agency seizing cash at airports.  Earlier this year, the…DEA…[was forced to] return…more than $82,000…it [had stolen] from an elderly Pittsburgh man and his daughter after a federal class-action lawsuit was filed on their behalf by the Institute for Justice…A 2017 report…found that the DEA [had stolen] more than $4 billion in cash…over the previous decade, but $3.2 billion…w[as] never connected to any criminal charges.  The majority of seizures occurred in airports, train stations, and bus terminals…

Top Cop (#1026)

This psychopath is still far too close to power for comfort:

Kamala Harris…is a schemer on the order of Lady Macbeth and Frank Underwood combined.  The only thought more horrific than Harris being one blood clot away from the Oval Office is of her replacing Bill Barr as U.S. Attorney General…Harris’ record as a prosecutor, both as San Francisco’s District Attorney and as California’s Attorney General, was marked by the misuse of her authority for political ends, and a sweeping contempt for the accused, for the U.S. Constitution and for the cause of justice.  A full exploration of Harris’ prosecutorial misdeeds would require a volume, if not volumes.  They run the gamut, from her sham investigation of widespread law enforcement misconduct in Orange County, to the family separations that resulted from her crackdown on the parents of truant kids, to her defense of the death penalty and laughter at the idea of marijuana legalization, to her decision not to go after Steve Mnuchin’s OneWest Bank for alleged misconduct regarding foreclosures, to a sweet plea deal for a fellow Democratic pol accused of assaulting women…Not only is Kamala a “cop”…she’s a bad cop, one who should not be granted the kind of national power to which she aspires…

Neither Addiction Nor Epidemic (#1061)

Blaming bad behavior on an imaginary “addiction” is the opposite of accepting responsibility:

A porn-addicted probation officer in Florida is facing charges after he was caught using his cellphone to record video beneath a woman’s dress at Walmart…Darius Brantley…was caught on surveillance camera…approaching a woman twice while using his phone to take video footage beneath her dress…The woman then called police after Brantley left the Walmart and a[n employee]…jotted down his license [plate number]…Brantley…admitted to recording the woman [but blamed an imaginary]…pornography addiction…

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FOSTA’s real purpose is making it easier to file lawsuits against online companies, while politicians pat themselves on the back.  –  Ron Wyden

A Procrustean Bed (#502)

A documentary glorifies the prohibitionist shitshow that is New York’s “sex trafficking court”:

…Judge Toko Serita…presides over Queens’s Human Trafficking Intervention Court…where she processes women who have been arrested on charges of prostitution…The women…are offered a choice:  Instead of [being given constitutional due process]…they can [submit to]…a set number of [brainwashing] sessions.  If, in six months, they have not been arrested again, the charges are dropped and the case is sealed…about 80 percent of the women take the [brainwashing] option…[less] than victims, Serita sees them first and foremost as…[objects to be processed.  Filmmaker Stephanie] Wang-Breal…says…in the film’s notes: “Who am I to say she doesn’t have agency, who am I to say what she should be doing with her life?” [and yet she glorifies this grotesque denial of women’s agency anyway]…

Nobody involved in producing this mess stopped to question the court’s assumption that human beings are mere objects to be “processed”.  You know, like in a food processor.

All Shapes and Sizes (#521)

This procedure has come a long way in only three years:

Doctors in the US have performed the world’s first complete penis and scrotum transplant on a former soldier who had his genitals blown off after stepping on a hidden bomb while on tour in the Middle East.  The 14-hour operation performed last month at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, was the most complex and extensive penis transplant ever attempted…The young [man]…received an entire penis, scrotum (without testicles), and partial abdominal wall from a deceased donor…It took a team of nine plastic surgeons and two urology surgeons…The surgery took place on March 26 and nearly a month on doctors seem confident of its success but will continue to monitor the patient’s recovery…

Shame, Shame (#649)

My friend Mark Bennett takes down Texas’ overbroad and mindlessly-draconian “revenge porn” law:

Mark Bennett, the Texas Tornado, took another law down for violating the First Amendment.  This time, it was…the so-called “revenge porn” law.  In Ex parte Jones, the 12th District Court of Appeals…held that the statute was facially unconstitutional.  As has been argued from the day Mary Anne Franks began her efforts to create a criminal revenge porn statute, it clearly implicated the First Amendment’s prohibition against laws infringing on free expression, to which she merely screamed her denials and did her best to deflect by creating a fantasy interpretation of the First Amendment…The State argues…relying upon Franks’ and Danielle Citron’s “legal” arguments…that [such images fall] within a new concept of obscenity, “contextually obscene”.  Except there is no such category outside of their imaginations, nor can anything be found obscene except by a jury…the court noted that the law failed to make any effort to narrow its prohibitions, which was a fundamental tenet of the Franks approach to criminalizing revenge porn lest anyone get away with it…

The Peril 

The hypocrisy of politicians sometimes defies belief:

Jack Johnson…became the first black heavyweight boxing champion after defeating Tommy Burns in Sydney, Australia, in 1908.  Two years later, he defended his title against boxer James J. “Jim” Jeffries, who…was referred to as the “great white hope” by racist…fans who wanted him to…take back the heavyweight crown for whites…Jeffries lost the fight…[but] what racism could not do to Johnson in the boxing ring, it found other ways to accomplish.  Johnson was convicted in 1913 of violating the Mann Act…the Justice Department…argued that Johnson’s relationship with a white woman was a “crime against nature”…criminalization of sex work in the US is rooted in racism, and modern campaigns do little to mask that lineage…The “white slavery” campaign of the early 1900’s…led directly to the enactment of the federal Mann Act, (a.k.a. the White Slave Traffic Act), in 1910.  “[O]nce prohibition of sex work was in place,” writer Maggie McNeill has noted, “it was enforced disproportionately against poor people and ethnic minorities, especially black people, just as all prohibitionist laws are.”  As Andrew Glass wrote for Politico, the first person prosecuted under the Mann Act…was Jack Johnson…That Donald Trump should look to a pardon for Johnson in the same month he signed…FOSTA…into law, is bitterly ironic…

Legal Is as Legal Does (#666) 

Lewis & her friends are naive fools; what they’re asking for is legalization & protectionism, and they’re not going to like it if they get it:

New Zealand sex workers are furious that foreign prostitutes who come on temporary visas can advertise their services here despite it being illegal for them to work.  High profile escort Lisa Lewis is one of several who have taken their complaints to Immigration New Zealand…calling for a harsher stance against migrant sex workers…She wants INZ to shift its focus from just deporting migrant sex workers to punish [advertising venues] that profit from helping the promotion of these illegal sex workers.  Lewis said the increase in number of foreign prostitutes coming over has hit local sex workers in the pocket…

Permanent Record

Note that other states have similar (if less broad) laws, and that the tendency toward such penalties is increasing:

Currently in both Maryland and Tennessee, a criminal past — or even just being accused of a crime — often stands between people and a job.  This is because many occupational licensing laws prevent ex-offenders from being able to obtain a license for the jobs they seek…these restrictions aren’t targeted at people whose criminal history relates to their desired career; instead, they can serve as blanket bans for those hoping to enter hundreds of professions including plumbing, cosmetology and interior design.  By prohibiting wide swaths of people from licensure, these boards aren’t protecting health and safety — they’re just making it more likely these individuals will remain unemployed and unable to support themselves or their families…in some cases, people need only to be accused of a crime — not even convicted of it — for the board to deny them a license.  Many of these bans are also permanent…In one instance in Tennessee…a woman convicted for prostitution over a decade ago learned she couldn’t become a radiation therapist…

I’m going to start using this heading for the many cases of people who lose their jobs due to a history of sex work; they currently appear under the overbroad “First They Came for the Hookers…”

All-Purpose Excuse (#794)

In this confused mess, a lawyer complains that anti-immigrant actions “hurt efforts to stop human trafficking”, even though “human trafficking” is a dysphemism used to demonize immigration:

If Trump truly cared about victims of human trafficking, he would put an end to his ongoing assault on immigrants.  Statistics on the number of victims of human trafficking are notoriously unreliable because of widespread [ov]erreporting…Since Trump assumed the presidency, Immigration and Customs Enforcement has used the fight against human trafficking as justification for its crackdown on undocumented immigrants.  ICE arrests have surged by more than 40 percent…[which] has aggravated the fear of coming forward among undocumented victims of human trafficking, undermining the U.S. government’s own efforts to tackle the problem…

In other words, “Trump’s crackdown on migration is interfering with existing attempts to prevent migration”.


Here’s another article about FOSTA, which despite many good points expended so much effort in licking prohibitionist arseholes it nearly made me vomit.  Since there are plenty of good articles which denounce censorship and promote human rights without sucking the dick of power, there’s not a lot of reason to bother with this one; however, if you feel compelled you’ll see this “journalist” ceding ground to prohibitionists and otherwise making ignorant, unhelpful statements all over the place.  It starts in the lede, which proclaims that FOSTA was “a rare moment of bipartisan agreement”, a deeply stupid statements which ignores that the two main US parties have never disagreed on prohibition as a principle at any point in the past century, and that literally every single anti-sex work bill of the past two decades has had nearly-unanimous bipartisan support.  The article misstates the case against Backpage, repeats prohibitionist lies, characterizes third parties as “pimps & traffickers”, downplays the breadth of opposition to internet censorship with phrases like “some argue”, and even claims that “FOSTA was pitched with a very specific (and noble) goal in mind”; apparently author Kate Knibbs believes that censorship, denial of human rights, and negating the agency and consent of half a million women are “noble”.  I certainly don’t.

This Means War (#830) 

Megalomaniacal US rulers believe they have the right to disrupt the lives of millions all over the world:

Before New Zealand Cracker – a classifieds website used by sex workers – was shut down by the FBI, Wellington woman Sarah (not her real name) says she received at least five enquiries from clients each day.  Now, she is lucky to receive two a week through other advertising platforms.  “It has totally ruined our lives”…the FBI seiz[ure of]…Backpage.com…[has produced] a global and profound disruption of the sex work industry, including in countries like New Zealand, where prostitution is legal.  New Zealand Cracker was one of the many subsidiary sites Backpage.com hosted around the world.  For more than a decade it was at the heart of New Zealand’s sex work industry – offering businesses and sex workers a cheap, effective way of connecting with clients.  Its closure has, without warning, taken livelihoods away, leaving workers without the resources to operate their businesses or, in some cases, survive…

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The public never wants to hear that their fear-based and/or moral-routed legislation isn’t solving a problem.  –  Gracie Passette

All Shapes and Sizes

The world’s first successful penis transplant has been reported by a surgical team in South Africa.  The 21-year-old recipient…lost his penis in a botched circumcision…the operation was a success and the patient was happy and healthy…Full sensation has not returned [but]…the man is able to pass urine, have an erection, orgasm and ejaculate…

Politicizing the Personal

I’m always pleased when someone whose name isn’t Maggie McNeill attacks the concept of “empowerment”:

I was disappointed when…Woman’s Hour decided to debate the question “can porn empower women?”  This question not only relies on misguided assumptions that limit the framing of the debate, it also misses the point…it doesn’t matter whether porn performers are empowered or not by their work – they still have agency, and they still have rights.  Porn is one of the least marginalised jobs within the sex industry, but it still suffers from the same fallacy as every other discussion about sex work – the idea that it is only a legitimate choice if it is “empowering”.  We don’t hold other industries to this standard…Why do we only expect “empowerment” of sex work, and not of other jobs?…We don’t demand that waitresses feel “empowered” in their jobs for us to recognise their agency in choosing the work, and we don’t tell other workers who serve male customers that they can’t be feminist.  The empowerment fallacy is only applied to the sex industry – and it’s deeply insidious…

The Last Shall Be First

Another potty-obsessed politician wants to enforce his hangups with violence:

A Texas lawmaker has filed a bill that would prohibit schools from allowing transgender students to use restrooms in accordance with their gender identity…Gilbert Pena [wants]…districts…held liable for $2,000 in exemplary damages — plus actual damages, court costs and attorneys fees — if employees knowingly allow transgender students to use [the proper] restrooms…In other words, the bill would place a bounty on the heads of transgender students, offering rewards to peers who report them for going to the bathroom…

Traffic Jam Minnesota Connection

The more one looks, the more continuity one sees between the Satanic Panic & “sex trafficking” hysteria:

…1978’s The Minnesota Connection [was] written by “preacher-cop” Al Palmquist…[and] billed as…the true account of Palmquist’s battle with sex trafficking victims, but it contains so many factual flaws that you must use air quotes while saying the words “true story”…[for several years before the book Palmquist gave lectures on] how Satanists use subconscious, subliminal, “mystical calls” in advertising and rock music to attract folks to the occult and its leaders who ply them with drugs so they can get them to worship Satan…[when] this Satanism stuff [didn’t gain] any traction…Palmquist [turned]…to fight the human demons in this word:  Pimps…he…[became] fixated on the notion of a “Minnesota Pipeline” that [delivered] women to pimps in New York…

On the Simultaneous Having and Eating of Cake 

Prostitutes in Spain are to be entitled to labour rights and would be able to claim unemployment benefits when not in work, a court has ruled.  Judge Juan Augustín Maragall ruled…that prostitutes should be given contracts by brothel owners, who would pay social security contributions on their behalf.  The civil court decision was made after a massage parlour…was raided by labour inspectors…The owner argued that the workers were autonomous and not officially employed, however authorities stated that as there was a employer and employee working relationship, it constitutes a form of contract so social security payments should be made…

Like a Horse and Carriage

Of course, some gay activists are against this because it denies them special privileges, and the Democrats are angry it was proposed by a Republican:

Something remarkably libertarian has just happened in Oklahoma.  The state’s House of Representatives voted…to end government licensing of marriages…citizens…will instead file “certificates of marriage” or file affidavits of common law marriage with the clerks after it’s all done with…these certificates will stand as proof of marriage for Oklahoma law…So this isn’t some phony “separate but equal” plan to protect marriage from “the gays.”  Any Oklahoma statute that operates off of marital status or provides benefits or privileges based on marital status will accept either of these non-license certificates…they will get all the same rights and privileges under Oklahoma law…Charlotte Rose

Skin To Skin

We’ve seen several stories about Charlotte Rose, but this one concentrates on her work with the disabled; longtime readers know how important I consider that specialization.  The article also touches on “sexological bodywork”, the latest attempt by some whores to draw a line between themselves and others which casts them as “good” and “important” and the others as “bad” and “criminal”.

Guest Columnist:  Kelly Michaels

Things had been going a lot better for my friend Kelly Michaels; her abusive ex-husband had decided he wasn’t actually interested in having custody of their children, making her battle to keep them moot.  But recently, the problems started again and rapidly escalated:

…It came to my attention that my ex-husband and daughter were concealing the fact that Jillian was engaging in extreme self mutilation, yet he failed to get her help…Jillian…[notified] me [via text message] that she is running away…I had the person that we share a home with pick her up [instead]…[and] took Jillian to Melbourne, believing that I was acting under Fl statute 787.03 Paragraph C…the abuse registry…[opened] an investigation…[but when I brought] my daughter to a hospital…[the cops] held me, and told me that I may be arrested for Kidnapping, along with anyone else that spoke to the child after leaving her fathers home…

She is trying to raise money for her defense and that of the friends who helped her to take her daughter out of danger; to contribute go to the link above, and if you can help connect Kelly with an experienced criminal defense and/or child custody attorney please contact me via via email as soon as possible.

Schadenfreude (#404)

Remember the Dallas outfit cashing in on “sex trafficking” tours?  Here’s a description of what one is like:

…I went on something called a human-trafficking bus tour and have been struggling since to make sense of what happened…Never leaving the safety of the bus, we learned from our tour leader that some of the massage parlors have been busted for selling sex. (!)  The strip clubs…we saw, the tour-leaders explained, shared some common traits with other strip clubs, and those other strip clubs were busted for various types of illegal activity…Children At Risk…is…led by Dr. Bob Sanborn [and]…describes human trafficking as a major problem in Texas, though…their research…appears to be overblown…What we [actually learned] from the tour…is that there are definitely places in Dallas where sex-related things have occurred…

All-Purpose Excuse

This article on the rapid and entirely unchecked metastasis of the Department of Homeland Security mentions, among many other things, its role in promoting “sex trafficking” hysteria.  It’s a great example of how governmental powers claimed to fight one supposed enemy are invariably expanded to everyone else.

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Sex workers have very special qualities.  They are skilled at giving pleasure in whatever way is required.  –  Tuppy Owens

All Shapes and Sizes

Why don’t journalists actually read what they’re writing about?

…In a study of 105 heterosexual Australian women, flaccid penis size, height, and shoulder-to-hip ratio all affected the women’s attractiveness ratings of life-size, computer-generated male figures…The penis effect was so strong that that the study’s authors…[theorized] that it may have driven the evolution of bigger penises in humans…Shoulder-to-hip ratio mattered the most, while both penis size and height mattered about the same amount…there were diminishing returns for everything.  That is, how much more attractiveness the figures gained for added height, penis size and shoulder-to-hip ratio decreased as those traits increased.  So the attractiveness difference between at 6’1″ man and a 6’2″ man is less than the difference between a 5’1″ man and a 5’2″ man.  For penis size, the dropoff in attractiveness gains started at about 7.6 centimeters, or three inches…

In other words, the study doesn’t show that most women are attracted to really big cocks; it shows that they tend to find really small ones unattractive, which isn’t at all the same thing.  And BTB, the theory that the comparatively-large human penis is a product of artificial selection is not remotely new; it’s also probable that the same process resulted in human women having prominent tits when we aren’t pregnant or nursing.

License To Rape

A small-town North Carolina cop raped a 13-year-old girl while on duty, and the town hired him without any…screening after he had raped an 11-year-old…Jaymin Lenwood Murphy was sentenced in December 2010 to 41 years in prison for sexual offenses against the two girls…The [13-year-old, who is suing the town]…says that Murphy “threatened her mother and herself with jail” so she “was too terrified…to report it to anyone”…

A War for Peace

Femen demonstrates how deeply it cares about women by physically attacking them at work:

I’ve previously pointed out Femen’s deep hypocrisy in claiming that it’s noble for a woman to use her sexuality for politics, but not as a means of earning a living.  But it’s actually worse than that:  “Each new recruit…has to show off her breasts to audition for the role…each member’s salary allegedly comes to around $1,000…”  In other words, they’re paid for using their sexuality; they’re sex workers dedicated to stopping other women from doing sex work.

Against Their Will

Yesterday, Pak Kret police found the bodies of two girls floating near a pier in front of Kredtrakarn Protection and Occupational Development Center…the…girls…reportedly attempted to escape the Center by swimming across the Chao Phraya River…”  What this story does not make clear is that this was actually a prison for girls “rescued” from sex work, which explains why they were desperate to escape despite the absurd claims of “authorities”.

The Crumbling Dam

Joyce Arthur of FIRST shows what an anti-criminalization article by a non-sex worker should look like:

Within the next year, our Supreme Court may very well strike down Canada’s prostitution laws as unconstitutional because they place sex workers at risk of violence and abuse.  Are we ready for full decriminalization?  Or will society’s fear of the legal vacuum lead to a panicked rush to pass new legislation to criminalize or control sex work?  Most people know little or nothing about actual sex workers…because they’ve been fed negative and false stereotypes from movies and TV, sensationalistic news stories, “do-gooder” organizations that purport to rescue trafficked sex slaves, and various self-appointed “experts” whose views are informed mostly by shoddy research and propaganda.  The true experts on sex work have been speaking out more and more, however, and people are finally starting to listen to them…

The Course of a Disease

The Swedish rot reaches South America:

…the Argentine Congress started discussing…[a bill] to penalize anyone who buys sex…regardless of whether the person providing the sex is a consenting adult…No one would contest that actual sex trafficking is a problem in Argentina and that something should be done about it…

SexWorker Open UniversityJust call me nobody, then.  Coercion into commercial sex is rare everywhere, and the rare individuals who are so victimized aren’t helped by wrongheaded “something should be done” legislation.  Meanwhile, half a world away, the Scottish Trade Union Conference decided to screw a sex worker outreach event called “Sex Worker Open University” by cancelling the facilities it had agreed to provide at (almost literally) the last minute:

…the Scottish Trades Union conference…issued this statement:  “…the specific title of the event…was…“The Scottish Context:  Opposing Criminalisation of Clients”…a number of individuals and organisations contacted us to ask why we were taking this view…[which] is diametrically opposed to the position STUC…reached as a consequence of its democratic process…”  This suggests that a public meeting was somehow hidden, or that SWOU attempted to keep this information private…If a LGBTQ group wants to hold an event and homophobic groups phone to complain will they cancel the booking?  If a Muslim group hosts [an] event and…Islamaphobes demonstrate will the STUC refuse to offer support and solidarity?  Will their position always be with the oppressors rather than the oppressed?…[and] why does the STUC have a position that is against the best interests of the workers?  They say it was democratically reached but it was not voted for by the full membership, nor were the workers who would be effected consulted…

A False Dichotomy (TW3 #8)

Runaway maids are turning to prostitution in order to support themselves during their illegal stay in…Sharjah…518 prostitution cases and 10 human trafficking cases were recorded…[in the emirate]…in 2012.  Absconding maids topped the prostitution cases…[but] some…came to the country on a visit visa…to work illegally in the sex worker industry…

Handy Figures (TW3 #17)

As I’ve pointed out before, the tendency of recent studies to “find” that impossibly-low numbers of men hire whores has a lot more to do with social stigma and poor question phrasing than with reality; the General Social Survey‘s claim that only 14% of American men have ever paid for sex could only be true if the number of sex workers were a tenth what it is and we each only had two clients per week!  But though I respectfully disagree with Dr. Milrod about that survey’s data being credible, I have no respect for those who technically agree with me not because of logic or experience, but because the finding contradicts “trafficking” dogma!

Naked Truth

Laura Lee in the Independent on why the Swedish model is a bad idea:

…Rhoda Grant…is pushing…this measure because she believes that prostitution is…inherently harmful and dangerous.  I know from years of experience that for the vast majority of sex workers…that simply isn’t true…they made an informed choice to enter the industry and enjoy their work…Grant [stated] in…Glasgow Evening Times  [that] “People that use prostitutes are people who would rape and abuse.”  Not only is that statement false, it is also offensive in the extreme to every client I have ever met…the solution to the protection of those in the sex industry is complete decriminalisation …any further criminalisation of the sex industry will cost lives.

The Young and the Brainless

Judgy Bitch’s excellent take on the “teen girl pimp” case:

…some newbie traffickers scouted and groomed vulnerable girls on social media sites, lured them to a rough part of town, stripped them naked, took nude photos and then blackmailed the young victims into working as escorts.  And then took their money.  The girls who resisted were physically beaten.  The traffickers?  Two fifteen year old girls, and one sixteen year old girl…It doesn’t appear that any men, let alone black men, were involved on the pimping side of the equation in Ottawa, but that hasn’t stopped the media from trying to associate any instance of pimping with black men…and…who stepped in to help the girls being victimized?  Who took a stand and put a stop to what was going on?…Yeah, that would be the johns.  Men called up an escort service, looking for sex in exchange for money, and when they realized the girls were desperately underage and deeply emotionally upset, they intervened.  In [two cases] the john drove the young girl home…In a third case, the john flat out refused to have sexual contact with someone who was clearly a minor…

Mark LancasterOne Born Every Minute (TW3 #51)

Remember Mark Lancaster, the guy who tried to trick naïve coeds into having sex with him as a supposed “audition” for a sugar daddy referral service?  He’s being charged with…wait for it…”sex trafficking”.  Add that to your list of bizarre uses for this ever-expanding umbrella term.

Skin To Skin

It’s wonderful to see so many articles arguing that disabled people have the right to see sex workers  even if prohibitionists are upset by the idea:

A forthcoming Channel 4 documentary, Can Have Sex Will Have Sex…has been labelled “controversial“, but many mothers call the sex and disability helpline, which I run, worried that their disabled son is physically unable to masturbate and desperately needs an outlet…I really love the idea of sex workers giving disabled people the chance to be touched in a non-medical way, perhaps for the first time in their lives, to be held in a warm pair of arms and have their sexual dreams respected and lived out.

Number Puzzle

Another prohibitionist screed masquerading as reasoned argument is debunked by Feminist Ire:

In early March…the Huffington Post published…“Debunking The Myths: Why Legalising Prostitution Is A Terrible Idea”…by Jacqui Hunt, London director of Equality Now…despite its title, its scope is not limited to legalisation:  she believes decriminalisation is an equally bad idea.  At first glance, her article looks fairly reasonable and well researched, citing studies from various countries in which sex work has been legalised or decriminalised…[but] the ways in which…her claims have been made…undermine her credibility…because the primary source for her observations on New Zealand reveals a markedly different picture from the one she has chosen to paint, I’m given to feel that all of her claims ought to be thoroughly investigated…

Lack of Evidence (TW3 #314)

Clay Nikiforuk, the young woman harassed by US customs officials because they thought she was an escort, appears to “get it”:

There’s no doubt in my mind that one reason my story gained the attention it did was that it screamed “sexy” at every juncture…But another reason…is that…when bad things start happening to innocent, educated white people, they could happen to anyone — or rather, other privileged people…when sex and sexuality are criminalized, people are made illegal and their rights made moot…If I were a sex worker, I might have “deserved” the treatment I received, or my detainment might have “made sense.”  If I were from a minority group or were not as educated in the English language, my story might not have provoked the shock and outrage that it did.  And rather than receiving the reaction “That should never happen to anyone,” often the reaction I still get is “That should never have happened to you”…

Trafficking, Trafficking Everywhere! (TW3 #314)

What a sane, agenda-free sex work study looks like:

Migrant prostitutes…are in the sex trade for the money…research…in New Zealand has found…Catherine Healy…said…”The findings suggests there are no signs that migrant sex workers here are victims of trafficking” [despite US claims]…

57%: On student, work or visitor visa
86%: From Asia
26%: Came to New Zealand “to study”
35%: Knew someone living here
76%: Did sex work to pay household bills
5%: Could not refuse clients and did not have access to their passports

In other words, only 5% of migrant whores (themselves a minority of the sex worker population) could be described as “coerced” in any valid way.

Terrilyn MonetteThe Widening Gyre (TW3 #314)

All over Lakeview, you’ll find signs asking people to be on the lookout for missing teacher Terrilyn Monette…[rumors claim] that the Russian Mafia moved into New Orleans shortly before the Super Bowl…to abduct women for human trafficking…NOPD…is trying to squelch the rumor…

If the NOPD didn’t want a stupid “sex trafficking” panic, it shouldn’t have participated in spreading one.

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Those who would criminalise prostitutes seem oddly keen to eliminate true voices of experience from the discussion.  –  Brooke Magnanti

All Shapes and Sizes

Res ipsa loquitur:

…Jonah Falcon was stopped…by the TSA at the San Francisco International Airport…because of a bulging package hidden in his pants…the world’s largest recorded penis…[which is] 9 inches flaccid, 13.5 inches erect…”[A] guard…asked me if I had some sort of growth…I said, ‘It’s my dick’…He gave me a pat down but made sure to go around [my penis] with his hands.  They even put some powder on my pants, probably a test for explosives”…

The Camel’s Nose

Congress’ new strategy is to enact SOPA piece by piece so it doesn’t attract so much attention; though the Intellectual Property Attaché Act is mostly cultural imperialism like the “Trafficking in Persons Report”, it also creates yet another unelected “czar” with dictatorial powers.  Luckily, a group called the Internet Defense League (whose members include Public Knowledge, Reddit, Mozilla and the Electronic Frontier Foundation) was launched on July 19th; its purpose is to monitor threats to internet freedom and then spread the word and organize mass resistance (like the protests that stopped SOPA) whenever necessary.

Lying Down With Dogs

It’s always interesting to see how closely American anti-whore rhetoric resembles that of nations which are not exactly advanced or Western:

Lusaka Province Minister Gerry Chanda [rejected] calls by some members of the public to legalise prostitution…[because it] is illegal…cannot be tolerated…[and] is alien to Zambia…Inspector-General of Police Stella Libongani described sex workers as a “public nuisance” and warned them with arrest if found loitering on the streets…

Bone of Contention

So, aren’t vandalism and indecent exposure already illegal for everyone without a special law just for whores?

More than 40 [street sign] poles have been bent, buckled or broken in the past 18 months in one area of south Auckland, New Zealand… “Prostitutes use these street sign poles as dancing poles,” said [a member of the city council.  The claim appears in a pamphlet]…detailing frustrations of residents and businesses struggling to cope with [streetwalkers and calling]…on parliament…to give Auckland Council powers to ban sex workers from certain areas…other…incidents [include]…a transvestite [ramming] a supermarket trolley into a woman’s car before lying across the bonnet, and a school-bus full of children observing a transvestite changing her dress…

Sisters in Arms

Considering America’s grotesque inflation of penalties for every conceivable “crime”, what will happen if abortion is eventually recriminalized?

38 states have passed laws that create a crime for causing the death of a fetus…23 of which apply at the earliest stages of pregnancy.  What we have now is a what Professor Angela Davis calls a “prison industrial complex”:  a system of for-profit prisons so hungry for more inmates that it drives immigration policy, and pays off judges to fill jail cells with children…[and] so bloated that rural economies have become dependent upon the influx of inmates…since the 1970s, the rate of incarceration for women has increased over 700%.  We have lawmakers admit that they believe that women should face “serious” criminal penalties for having abortions.  We have so dismantled the right to privacy that state-mandated technological surveillance can literally invade women’s bodies.  We have Kafkaesque bedside interrogations and arrests of women who fall down stairs when they admit ambivalence about…single motherhood…two women…are [now] facing murder trials for losing pregnancies…Bei Bei Shuai…[and] Rennie Gibbs

Against Their Will

A new report by two Indian authors has poked holes into the “raid, rescue, and rehabilitation” schemes…targeting sex workers.  The report, titled We Have the Right Not To Be “Rescued”…says, “Contrary to the purported goal of assisting women, the anti-trafficking projects…often undermine HIV projects…causing harm to women and girls.”  The report alleges that [police raids on] brothels…are often violent.  Cases of sexual assault and rape and sodomy have also been reported during such actions…Research from Indonesia and India has indicated that sex workers who are rounded up during police raids are beaten, coerced into having sex [and]…placed in institutions where they are sexually exploited or physically abused.  The raids also drive sex workers onto the streets, where they are more vulnerable to violence…

An Ounce of Prevention

It looks as though an AIDS vaccine is finally within reach:

…a 2009 clinical trial in Thailand…tested Sanofi’s ALVAC, a weakened canary pox virus used to sneak three HIV genes into the body, and AIDSVAX, a vaccine originally made by Roche Holding’s Genentech that carried an HIV surface protein.  Both vaccines had poor showings in individual trials…[but] the…combination cut HIV infections by 31.2 per cent…Preparations are under way for a follow-up trial testing beefed-up versions of the vaccines among heterosexuals in South Africa and [homosexual] men…in Thailand…

Neither Addiction Nor Epidemic

Dr. Marty Klein not only explodes the myth of “sex addiction”, but also explains why it’s such a destructive paradigm:

…“Sex addiction” is a special weapon now used…to ignore science…ignite fear [and]…legitimize anti-sex moralism and bigotry.  And psychologists, judges, legislators, and the media are buying it…the sex addiction movement…did not arise from…sex therapy or any other sexuality-related field.  Rather, it was started in 1983 by Patrick Carnes, who…claims no training in human sexuality.  “Sex addiction” has been adopted enthusiastically by the addiction community, and to a lesser extent by the marriage and family profession—the latter historically undertrained and uncomfortable with sexuality…Of course, the media loves it, decency groups love it, and those who identify as some other kind of addict…love it, especially if they’re fans of the Twelve Steps…

If you still think some people are really “addicted” to sex, Dr. Klein suggests you take the Sexual Addiction Screening Test (SAST).  You may be surprised how high you score, but you shouldn’t be; “sex addiction” rhetoric pathologizes normal sexual feelings and behaviors.  As Dr. Klein points out, what the test really measures is whether you grew up in a sex-negative culture.  The article is well worth reading in its entirety, especially for its debunking of inane claims about “brain areas” and “erototoxins”.

Much Ado About Nothing

I guess the media must be bored with hooker “scandals”, because this report of T-men paying for women with government funds didn’t make the news; we’re told they won’t even lose their  jobs because the activity “didn’t include underage prostitutes or human trafficking.”  You know, just like 96.5% of the sex work persecuted in this country doesn’t.

The Pygmalion Fallacy

Here’s a trailer for a new documentary named The Mechanical Bride, narrated by the legendary Julie Newmar.

The Birth of a Movement

In the process of critiquing a French miniseries about the maisons closes, Dr. Brooke Magnanti has some illuminating comments about the historical reality ignored by the creators of the melodrama:

…Prostitutes moved between brothels and changed names often to avoid detection…the notion that girls…could not, and did not, shop around for management is absurd…the drama is an uncomfortable union of modern agendas superimposed on a historical setting.  Since it’s in the past, there are no inconvenient contemporary sex workers to show the complex reality of prostitution and spoil the abolitionist fantasy…

First They Came for the Hookers…

If prohibitionists really want to “rescue” sex workers, why do they keep trying to stop us from getting other jobs?

…Harmony Rose…has been featured in more than 200 pornographic videos…[but] has…left the adult entertainment industry…and [is] training as a volunteer EMT…in Roanoke, VA…Fire Chief Rich Burch learned about Rose’s previous career…[and] contacted the…County Attorney…[who] noted, “Anything that results in public ridicule of the volunteer squads…must be avoided”…[and] that Burch “supports the decision of the volunteer chief if she decides to terminate the membership of [Rose].”  The community, however, seems to be on Rose’s side.  Of the over 500 comments that appear under the story on WDBJ’s Facebook page, nearly all support Rose’s continued work with the rescue squad…


For Those Who Think Legalization is a Good Idea in August Updates

As in Canada, Indian politicians feel compelled to defend tyranny by opposing court orders to decriminalize prostitution:

The Supreme Court…agreed to examine [the federal government’s] plea that sex workers should not be allowed to operate…”with dignity” as suggested by a panel…[the] solicitor general [argued]…that any such endorsement…would go contrary to the…Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act which bans prostitution in toto…He also wanted the bench to remove…Durbar Mahila Samanwaya Committee from the panel…[the defense argued] that the Act only prohibited brothel activities and…pimps…[and that] if a sex worker carries out the activities on her own volition, [they are] not…illegal…

Traffic Jam in TW3 (#21)

Emi Koyama examines the increasing redefinition of “sex trafficking” into a “gang-related” activity, including this ridiculous “pimp classification” system dreamed up by cops and prohibitionists.  She persuasively argues that “What is ignored in all of these discussions of the (racially coded) evils of ‘gangs’ is that many young men…become gang members and engage in its criminal activities for many of the same reasons many young women…[enter] the sex trade: poverty, failure of social and child welfare systems and public education, lack of viable economic opportunities…what is the moral difference between a young woman who is told to go out and sell sex, and a young man who is told to go out and sell drugs? And yet, the mainstream anti-trafficking discourse would have us believe that the young woman is an innocent victim but the young man is an evil criminal…

Feminine Pragmatism in TW3 (#23)

It’s like watching someone repeatedly hitting her own fingers with a hammer:

Nadya Suleman…allegedly signed a contract…[with] T’s Lounge…in West Palm Beach, Fla…But after some teasing by a T’s staffer on TV, Suleman bailed on the deal, and now plans to make her…debut at a rival strip club instead.  That’s grounds for a lawsuit…[because] the…contract…barred Suleman from being booked at any other strip club within 50 miles, 90 days before or after her gigs at T’s…Suleman’s manager maintains the contract was not valid, because T’s never forked over…[the] deposit fee…

Only Rights Can Stop the Wrongs in TW3 (#27)

First Guyana, now Singapore; let’s hope this list gets much longer:  “The Singapore government has lashed out at the United States over its human trafficking report…[due to] a number of ‘inaccuracies and misrepresentations’…

The Course of a Disease in TW3 (#28)

Sex workers aren’t the only ones angry over the French women’s minister’s prohibitionist crusade:

…How disappointing…that Vallaud-Belkacem’s most publicised policy announcement to date has been a pledge to “see prostitution disappear”…cynics would consider Vallaud-Belkacem’s grand plan a naive one, and typical of those that give radical governments a bad name.  Working girls in Paris…accused her of trying to drive a relatively well regulated industry underground…[and] Muslims…[hoped for repeal of] the crassly tagged “burqa ban”…Rather than presiding over job losses for…women, Vallaud-Belkacem should be…working to try to improve the lot of all women…

This Week in 2011

Head Games” describes the ways some clients try to control calls, and “July Miscellanea” featured items on a snooping gadget, another politician’s underwear photos, a woman getting plastic surgery to look like a drag queen & the suspension of the “anti-prostitution pledge” for domestic organizations.  “A Girl Who Can’t Say No” explains why I invest so much time in my work; “Social Construction of Eunuchs” examines people willing to sacrifice their childrens’ happiness to “social construction of gender”; “Concubine”  is a fictional interlude that you may find a bit disquieting; “Bootlickers” uses a campaign against bikini baristas to illustrate public collaboration with tyranny, and “J’accuse” was my first column on Dominique Strauss-Kahn.

This Week in 2010

What’s In a Name?” explains the many reasons whores use stage names; it was followed by “Couples” (a two-part column about couple calls), then “Modern Marriage”, which examines the reason for the high divorce rate.  “The Trick” was my very first fictional interlude, “The Myth of the Wanton” discusses the belief that women are more lustful than men, and “Just Drawn That Way”  looks at the complex motivations behind female sexuality.

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Nothing can be more surely established by a larger experience than that a Government which interferes with any trade injures that trade.  –  Walter Bagehot

Seven updates to previous columns from the fourth week of 2012.

All Shapes and Sizes (September 8th, 2010)

In this column I mentioned Peyronie’s Syndrome, which causes penile deformity; according to this January 23rd article from Science Now a more effective therapy may be on the horizon:

…A new study in rats shows that lacing a penis graft with adult stem cells yields better healing and sexual function…Men with penis injuries, deformities, or severe Peyronie’s disease…sometimes need surgery to reconstruct their genitalia and restore their sexual function.  Many receive a graft made of their own tissue, cadaver tissue, or pig intestines, but the surgery can cause complications, including erectile dysfunction.  Wayne Hellstrom, a urologic surgeon at Tulane University School of Medicine in New Orleans…wanted…a surgical intervention with fewer side effects.  So he teamed up with colleagues in California and China [to seed] pig intestine grafts with adult stem cells taken from fat tissue in rats…the researchers…found that rats with stem cell-laden grafts had less scarring and better erectile responses…than did those with stem cell-free grafts.  The rodents’ erections were comparable in rigidity, blood flow, and response time to those in the…control rats…The results…suggest that lacing the grafts with stem cells enhances blood flow and boosts the production of molecules that make and maintain erections, all of which makes for a better penis reconstruction…Hellstrom and colleagues plan to test the method in primates next and then eventually in people.  “Peyronie’s affects 3% to 9% of adult males and causes a lot of psychological distress,” Hellstrom says.  “If we can improve what we have now, it seems like the logical thing to do.”

The Red Umbrella (December 17th, 2010)

As we’ve discussed many, many times in the past, violence from the police [and] bad customers…is all too common a part of the lives of prostitutes, most especially streetwalkers; too many men…consider whores to be disposable, “non-persons” against whom assault, robbery or rape is permissible.  A large part of the reason for this is the suppression of our trade; the laws criminalizing our profession allow weak-minded men…to convince themselves that since we are “criminals” we don’t deserve to be treated like human beings, and the attitude of both the law and the police makes it difficult to impossible for…prostitutes to even be heard by the police much less have crimes against us investigated.”  This story from the January 10th Orlando Sentinel  demonstrates the first part of my statement and provides a welcome exception to the latter part; too bad Juarez will never recognize the poetic justice of the date he was arrested:

…Ernesto Juarez, 32, is facing several charges in a Dec. 17 attack, including sexual battery with a deadly weapon…[he] admitted to attacking, raping or attempting to rape five prostitutes…[but] detectives have yet to charge him in four of the cases.  One of his alleged victims…told [reporters] about her dangerous encounter…Juarez…picked her up on the afternoon of Dec. 10…agreed to pay her $40…and said he was going to take her to his house…[but when he] head[ed] into a secluded area and stopped at a metal gate, the woman became suspicious…[he] got out…went around to her side of the vehicle and pulled off his pants…[but when she asked for her] money, he punched her in the face…[then] pulled her outside and continued hitting her…[she got free and] crawled under the truck, grabbed ahold of the frame and held on as he tugged on her legs…[eventually she got] away…and [ran] to a nearby business screaming for help…A week [later] the property owner noticed Juarez’s pickup parked in the same [spot]…[he] found Juarez [raping] another prostitute in the front seat and called police…Juarez managed to drive away but didn’t get far…he first denied hurting the woman…but later changed his story and described how he had beaten and raped several prostitutes beginning in September.  [He claimed] he would “lose control” when the prostitutes asked him for money up front, because he viewed it as a sign of “disrespect”…Juarez is being held without bail at the Orange County Jail.

One wonders if he “loses control” when cashiers expect him to pay before taking groceries from a store, or if he just reserves his indignation for women he thinks won’t call the cops.

Real Men Support Sex Worker Rights (April 22nd, 2011)

In this January 26th essay in Reason, Jacob Sullum demonstrates his balls not only by opposing the popular campaign against Backpage and criticizing Forbes columnist Daniel Fisher (who ruined his own attack on Backpage’s critics with a mealy-mouthed anti-whore statement), but also by standing up for our rights and slamming Nicholas Kristof as one of the perpetuators of the system which exposes us to harm:

…Fisher hastens to add, “I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with trying to shut down the vigorous market for human flesh.”  Well, I am saying that, if…he means the exchange of sex for money.  It makes as much sense to ban prostitution because some prostitutes are forced…as it does to ban agriculture because farms have been known to use slaves…prohibition forces…prostitutes to work in dangerous conditions, picking up customers on the street or covertly connecting with them online, and makes it harder for them to seek legal remedies when they are cheated or abused.  These hazards, similar to those seen in black markets for drugs and gambling, are not inherent to the business of selling sex; they are inherent to the policy of using force to suppress peaceful commerce.  Since these dangers are entirely predictable, prohibitionists like Kristof should be reflecting on their role in perpetuating them, instead of making scapegoats out of businesses that run classified ads.

I strongly urge you to read the whole thing!

Full of Themselves (June 7th, 2011)

I always find it fascinating when women in professions which are only barely different from prostitution (such as stripping or domination) or historically connected to prostitution (such as acting and massage) get all holier-than-thou, proclaiming themselves ‘better’ than we are…

Would you believe…competition pole dancers trying to distance themselves from strippers?

Three Russian pole dancers…applied for visas to travel to the United States…they were told that it was best not to mention…that…[they were] in a pole dancing competition…the visa authorities decided to do some poking around…on…Facebook…[and discovered] they weren’t just tourists…their visas were…canceled…[and they] were subjected to an humiliating…grilling by three federal agents…Any other dance competition would have been above suspicion, but since it was pole dancing, they immediately [made] the stripper connection and…presumed that the competition was just window dressing for human trafficking, prostitution and illegal stripping!  This sad lack of comprehension is unfortunately still a reality and we have a long way to go before the stripper association is dislodged from people’s minds.  As of now the stereotype that people still have about pole dancing prevents them from viewing it as the legitimate art form that requires creativity and imagination and a sport that requires tremendous skill, athletic ability and great strength.

Because, you know, when a stripper does it to make a living it isn’t “legitimate” and requires no creativity, imagination, skill or athletic ability.  The writer doesn’t criticize the whole “sex workers are trafficked” nonsense; she’s only irate because the dancers were confused with “common” strippers.

Forward and Backward (November 22nd, 2011)

Remember those “prostitution-free zones” that enable Washington, DC cops to arrest people for “looking like prostitutes”, and how they’re trying to make them permanent?  Well, a coalition of civil rights advocates and transsexuals (who suffer disproportionately because cops assume they’re all drag streetwalkers) are fighting it, and the DC attorney general reluctantly agreed with them.  According to the January 24th Washington Post:

The D.C. attorney general’s office said…that the District’s temporary “prostitution-free zones” are probably unconstitutional, raising fresh doubts about a bill…that would broaden the zones and make them permanent…In [such] areas…police can make arrests for up to 24 consecutive days if two or more people congregate in public…and ignore dispersal orders…Council member Yvette Alexander…has introduced a bill that would empower police to make the zones permanent.  But [assistant AG Ariel] Waldman and Assistant Police Chief Peter New­sham expressed broad reservations about the bill…The statements…and…concerns from social service and gay rights activists, present fresh hurdles for Alexander’s efforts to combat prostitution…

When a politician says something is “probably unconstitutional”, it really means “this is so obviously unconstitutional we haven’t a snowball’s chance in Hell of slipping it past the civil libertarians without raising a huge stink.”

Legal Is as Legal Does (December 14th, 2011)

Yet another example of the dangers of legalization, in this case laws which presume hookers are so stupid we need Nanny to “protect” us from big bad pimps (unless they have a government license, of course):

A young prostitute was caught out in a covert operation called Operation Heatwave after she and three other prostitutes went to visit clients who turned out to be undercover police.  Aimee Louise Roy, 21, went to a hotel…with three other sex workers on October 23 to meet clients…[who were secretly] police and the group was arrested.  Roy was charged with knowingly participating in providing prostitution…If she was acting on her own, she wouldn’t have been in trouble.  There are two forms of legal sex work in Queensland – sole operators (private work) where a single sex worker works alone and sex work conducted in a licensed brothel…Magistrate Matthew McLaughlin noted the law was designed to catch out “pimps” and told Roy if she wanted to keep up that line of work she should do it through a licensed premises.

The story also demonstrates that pigs are pigs and will inevitably use whatever loophole the law gives them to harass and victimize whores.

The More the Better (January 9th, 2012)

The “gentrification” of Nevada brothels continues:

…a legal brothel near Reno [Nevada is]…taking the world’s oldest profession into the modern age of luxury recreation, featuring a cabaret…a fully equipped spa, and 10 deluxe suites.  “We see this as the Ritz-Carlton of brothels,” [said] Lance Gilman, co-owner of the Mustang Ranch Resort…[which] seeks to earn 40 percent of its revenue from goods and services unrelated to private time with the ladies…It costs nothing to stay at the resort [but] guests have to pay at least one of the women to accompany them around the Ranch at all times…Gilman and [his wife Susan] Austin said they were inspired by Walt Disney, who famously took his children to a shabby carnival and imagined building what would become the world’s first theme park — Disneyland.  “Most brothels are basically trailer parks in isolated places and there’s nothing to do once you get there other than have sex,” Gilman said…

This is great news; it was after Vegas casinos started “gentrifying” in the ‘80s that people from other states dropped their prejudices against gambling, and now casinos are everywhere in the US.  Of course,

…That’s not good news to people like Anne Bissell…[a] former prostitute…[whose self-appointed] mission is to deglamorize the…sex industry, which she believes to be full of what are not victimless crimes.  “The sex industry has hijacked so many terms, like freedom of choice…It used to be the definition of an empowered woman was a doctor or lawyer.  Now it’s a stripper or prostitute…”

This incredibly stupid statement has become very popular among prohibitionists; I wonder what looking-glass world they’re living in?  Because in this one, legally barring women from certain jobs is a restriction of choice, and the government and media paint sex workers as powerless victims.

One Year Ago Today

February Updates (Part One)” features items about a hooker accused of spreading HIV, a former madam pandering to popular prohibitionist myths and an Anglican priest fighting for strippers’ rights.

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How idiotic civilization is!  Why be given a body if you have to keep it shut up in a case like a rare, rare fiddle?  –  Katherine Mansfield

Several stories about society’s obsession with regulating and controlling women’s bodies and sexuality.

All Shapes and Sizes (September 8th, 2010)

In this column I wrote:

Porn…tends to make inexperienced young men think that women’s external genitalia are more alike than they actually are.  As a bisexual woman and a call girl who did hundreds of couple calls I can tell you that there is as much variation in vulvas as in penises…some labia are quite wrinkly, others smoother, and they vary in color and appearance…but none of this can be explained to jackasses; girls with unusually-shaped genitalia are sometimes insulted by rude clients, and I’ve even heard of ignoramuses accusing girls of being post-operative transsexuals because their vulvas don’t “look right” to these (usually young) men, who obviously consider themselves some sort of sex experts because they’ve been with a couple of dozen women.  Fortunately, older men have more experience and therefore realize that the genitalia of women, like those of men, come in all shapes and sizes.

For young men who wish to understand how much genital variation there really is, and for women who feel like their genitalia are odd-looking, I present I’ll Show You Mine, a book containing pictures of 60 different women’s vulvas and a little text written by the subjects.  Here’s an illustrated review posted by Story of Tits and Sass on July 15th.

To Protect and Serve (February 9th, 2011)

Police the world over seem to believe that one of the perks of their job is the privilege of using sex workers for their own gratification under guise of law, but it’s pretty rare to see a judge slap them down for it as this one did.  The story is paraphrased from one in the Orlando Sentinel of July 8th:

Six employees of a Daytona Beach Shores nightclub agreed to a total of $195,000 to settle a lawsuit against the city’s police department for a September 2009 incident in which “Public Safety Director” Stephan Dembinsky and 19 other male cops stood around ogling four exotic dancers and two female bartenders while a policewoman felt inside their bikinis for weed.  Dembinsky claimed he had no idea that cops sticking their hands into women’s underwear amounted to a strip search under Florida statutes, which clearly state that strip searches must be conducted by a person of the same sex and any observers must also be of the same sex as the person being searched.  But U.S. District Judge Mary E. Scriven said Dembinsky should have known; in an order she signed in May that denied a motion to have the case dismissed, she wrote “Even if he was unsure of the existence of probable cause, Chief Dembinsky knew that the manner and means of the execution of the strip searches was unlawful, yet, as final policymaker he concedes he did nothing.”

Dembinsky apparently felt he needed 20 cops to serve a search warrant at Biggins Gentleman’s Club after undercover vice cops bought drugs in the club.  None of the six employees in the suit was arrested, but they were searched anyway and one of the women had a single joint; misdemeanor marijuana possession charges against her were later dropped.  Most of the settlement money went to pay legal fees, leaving only $5,000 each for the victims; the decision to pay up was made by the city’s insurance carrier because it was cheaper to settle than to fight the suit.

Some badge-licking editorial comments on other versions of the story mocked the idea that it was possible to strip-search strippers, ignoring both the intimidation factor of 20 cops standing around leering and the fact that no strip club I know of allows patrons to stick their hands inside girls’ bikini bottoms.

Crime Against Society (February 26th, 2011)

One would think that since New Orleans gave cops the option of writing prostitution as a minor offense back in December, and the state recently reduced “crime against nature by solicitation” to a misdemeanor, that New Orleans cops wouldn’t be wasting time and money in prostitution “stings” any more.  Unfortunately, one would be wrong; apparently they wanted to destroy a few more lives with “sex offender” penalties before the change goes into effect.  According to the Times-Picayune:

New Orleans’ narcotics and vice police units conducted a prostitution sting in Mid-City this month, and arrested nine people over two separate occasions.  The New Orleans Police Department arrested four people…at the Rose Motel, in the 3500 block of Tulane Avenue, June 15 for soliciting an undercover officer for crimes against nature.  They also arrested five people…June 21 for the same crime at the same motel…

But this pales beside the mass arrests of three weeks prior, when a total of 51 people were arrested on prostitution or drug-related charges:

Promising an “aggressive” fight to rid the city’s neighborhoods of illegal activity, New Orleans Police Chief Ronal Serpas…said 51 people were arrested on drug and prostitution charges during undercover stings set up during the past three weeks…”People try to destroy the quality of life in neighborhoods” with drug dealing and other illegal activities, Serpas said.  “We’re not going stand for it.  We’re going to be aggressive”…

Of course, the easiest way to rid the city of illegal activity would be to imprison every member of the NOPD, but instead we get this:

For the second time in a month, the New Orleans Police Department has launched a blitz on vice, this time arresting 29 men who allegedly agreed to pay for sex with undercover…female officers…Superintendent Ronal Serpas said police arrested the men in the 9300 block of Airline Drive, the 3500 block of Tulane Avenue and the 7800 block of Chef Menteur Highway during the daytime operation, which took place between June 14 and June 22.  The men were booked with the solicitation of prostitutes and crimes against nature…the targeted areas were chosen because of neighbors’ complaints about illegal activity and information provided by individual districts.  “They (citizens) have children and families and want to use their neighborhoods,” Serpas said…[he] added that prostitution can result in the transmission of sexually transmitted diseases and is often linked to other crimes, such as carjackings or robbery.  “Prostitution is a crime of addiction and violence,” Serpas said…

…as opposed to being a cop, which is a crime of being addicted to violence.  Just so you know, none of those three blocks are “neighborhoods”; they’re industrial areas whose only inhabitants are rats and the residents of cheap motels.  And of course no story of police persecution of whores would be complete without the obligatory lies about disease and violent crime.  I guess Chief Serpas didn’t get the memo about us all being “trafficking victims” now.

For Those Who Think Legalization is a Good Idea (March 22nd, 2011)

While the United States slips further into barbarism and oppression, it’s nice to see that older, more civilized countries understand concepts like “adult agency” and “human rights”.  According to a July 21st story from Samay Live:

There will be no further arrest of any sex workers as prostitution is going to be regularized in India.  The new law will allow sex workers to live with dignity in…the country.  The Supreme Court holds that the right to live with dignity was a constitutional right of sex workers.  A bench presided over by Justice Markandey Katju on Tuesday sought suggestions on formulating conditions which would enable those who wished to “continue working as sex workers” to do so “with dignity.”  The bench constituted a panel comprising senior advocates and NGOs to look into the problems faced by sex workers and give suggestions to protect their fundamental rights…there are over 3 million female commercial sex workers in India and are often harassed by the police in the absence of proper regulation.  However, the prostitution is not illegal but the Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act, 1956 makes certain acts relating to prostitution an offence, which does not create conducive atmosphere for the sex workers and [they] often become victims of police action.

I’m looking forward to the day when India, Australia, New Zealand, Germany and other countries which treat prostitutes like human beings issue a “human rights report” condemning the United States for its abominable brutality against whores and our clients.

One Year Ago Today

The first part of “The Only Working Girl in New Orleans”, in which I describe my experiences as the only available escort after Hurricane Katrina.

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One dragon may breed nine different offspring.  –  Chinese proverb

Human beings come in all shapes and sizes, and nowhere is that more evident than in their sexual anatomy.  Because genitalia can still function within a wide range of cosmetic and morphological variation, there was little if any evolutionary pressure to prevent even extreme variance from the average, and nobody is more aware of such differences than prostitutes are (except, perhaps, physicians who specialize in those anatomical areas).

The average erect human penis is 14 cm long, and the great majority of men fall between 10.7 cm and 19.1 cm; it is 12.3 cm in circumference, with the majority falling between 11 and 13.6 cm.  So any of you male readers who fall into those ranges (and I know some of you went for the tape measure as soon as you read those numbers) are average, even if you think you’re small, and anything over 19 cm is really quite large even if your porn movies tell you otherwise.  Despite the myths, no study has ever detected any correlation between penis size and race, and my own extensive experience backs that up.  It is believed that the myth about black men having exceptionally large penises began in bathrooms and locker rooms, the only places normal heterosexual men ever see other men’s genitalia; black men’s penises tend to shrink very little when flaccid in comparison with those of white men (a statistical truth supported by my own observations), so a white man seeing a black penis might think, “If it’s that big when it’s soft, how big must it be hard?”

Since I know most of you are thinking about it, let’s get this out of the way early:  The biggest penis I ever handled was on a white man (a regular who was a physician from Texas), and it was as long as my forearm from elbow to wrist and as thick as my wrist.  My tape measure says that’s 29 cm long and 15.6 cm in circumference (11.4” long and 6.14” around).  And considering that I’ve seen over 4000 men professionally, I think it’s safe to say that the “twelve inch cock” of porn legend is so fabulously rare that the average woman has a greater chance of being hit by a meteor than of encountering one.  No, I wasn’t able to fit it all; I doubt many women could (he said he had never met one).  His girth wasn’t the issue; I’ve fit thicker (though shorter) ones.  It was just that rather amazing length!  Even as experienced as I already was when I met him, I must admit it was rather intimidating; he warned me about it on the phone because he had already encountered a few professionals who were too afraid to even attempt it.

His was the largest one I ever encountered, but not the longest; that title does indeed go to a black man, whose penis was roughly 36 cm long (though that’s just a guess based on my memory of how it looked against my torso).  In circumference, however, he was very typical, which gave his penis a rather snakelike appearance.  His proportions were so irregular, in fact, that he could not achieve a normal erection.  Though the last few inches of his member were reasonably firm, the rest of it was comparable to a garden hose with the tap turned on; that is to say, it was semi-rigid but still quite flexible.  His method of accomplishing intercourse was novel to say the least; he knelt between my legs, grasped his penis around the middle and inserted it as one might a dildo, then moved it in and out with his hand!  What fascinated me most about this procedure was that it didn’t seem to bother him in the least; clearly this was the way he had always had to enjoy women, so he was used to it.

On the other end of the spectrum are men who are so tiny that it’s difficult to accomplish anything with them.  Once a man’s penis gets down to about the size of my thumb (5 cm long) or less, condoms won’t stay on properly and only rear-entry position allows him enough depth of penetration to accomplish what he’s trying to accomplish.  Obese men with tiny penises (it’s notable that the two problems often go hand-in-hand) sometimes can’t even manage that, so oral or manual stimulation are the only options.  At least it isn’t difficult to fellate such clients, and if they don’t get to enjoy much of what their better-endowed brothers have they can at least get to experience a few things which are denied to normal-sized men, such as a woman taking both penis and testes into her mouth at the same time.  This of course presumes that the testicles are in proportion to the penis, which isn’t always the case; in fact, with larger penises I saw no correlation whatsoever.  Even the enormous monsters I described above had normal or just slightly above average testicles, and customers with very large testicles (sometimes larger than tennis balls) usually have normal-sized penises.  Only when the penis was pathologically small did I often see a correlation in testicular size; I presume that in such cases the two were related, representing a kind of arrested development which, as I mentioned above, was often accompanied by obesity and an odd kind of softness which made me feel as though the customer were a kind of giant baby rather than a mature man.

So far I’ve just talked about size, but shape is often more important.  The normal penis is either ramrod-straight or has a slight upward curve, but there are many variations.  I have seen curves so pronounced that the tip points almost straight up when the base is perpendicular to the man’s body, and also downward, left-hand or right-hand curves.  These severe bends are symptoms of Peyronie’s Syndrome, a penile disorder caused by a kind of plaque which builds up in the erectile tissue (see also here).  Besides the undesirable cosmetic effects, this disorder can make intercourse extremely uncomfortable or even painful for the woman (though most of my clients with the problem said it did not hurt them).  I found the downward curve the worst; in one such case the client actually bruised me internally, though I didn’t really notice it because he was long enough that the bruise was very deep in my vagina and thus not impacted by the next two clients.  When my husband had me the next day, however, it was acutely painful because he was long enough to hit the same spot; the discomfort persisted for a couple of days.

Though my husband’s penis is a fraction above the normal range of length, it is unusually thick and so causes me no discomfort as long as I can control his depth of penetration with my legs.  But when a man is unusually long and only of normal thickness, there is insufficient friction to act as a brake on vigorous pounding and the head can actually impact the cervix in women who, like me, have fairly small vaginas (more on this below).  This is acutely painful in a way no man can possibly understand (just as no woman can really know what impact to the testes feels like), so when I dealt with such men I was careful to avoid the rear-entry position (which shortens the vagina) and used my thighs to control the angle and depth of his penetration so as to keep his “bottoming out” to a minimum.  The opposite variation (above-average thickness with normal or below-average length) carries no direct problems for the woman, but is associated with a higher-than-normal rate of condom breakage.  Finally, there are a few conditions peculiar to uncircumcised men (such as thickening or stiffening of the foreskin leading to pain, infection and inhibited erection), but fortunately these are easily cured by circumcision.

Just as men have considerable variation in penis size and shape, so women have considerable differences in our genitalia as well.  The average depth of an unaroused vagina is about 10-15 cm and an aroused one 18-22 cm; women who have had children may be a few centimeters deeper and those who have had hysterectomies are sometimes shorter.  Like those of men, women’s sexual equipment inflates with arousal; this is why even an experienced woman can be injured in a rape, when her unaroused organs are smaller.  But unlike the penis, the vagina is a muscular organ and can be affected by position; the vagina is shortest when the legs are drawn up toward the torso (as in cowgirl and rear-entry) and longest when they are extended (as in the missionary position).  This is why I prefer the missionary position over all others; it allows the woman to control both the angle and the depth of penetration by simply moving her legs up or down.  Since my vagina is small and tight I can only accept large men with my legs down, but can allow men of average or short length deeper penetration by pulling my knees up toward my tits.  Unfortunately, men who have seen too many porno movies seem to believe that all women are over 22 cm deep and can thus take even the largest organs with their legs up on the man’s shoulders or their knees pushed down onto the mattress!  It usually wasn’t too difficult to get my legs out of such a man’s grip, but occasionally one was adamant and needed me to explain that the near-virginal tightness he was enjoying so much (and which I maintain to this day with Kegel exercises) went hand-in-hand with the shorter depth which disallowed such porn-star contortions with a well-endowed stallion like himself.

Porn causes one other occasional problem for some escorts; it tends to make inexperienced young men think that women’s external genitalia are more alike than they actually are.  As a bisexual woman and a call girl who did hundreds of couple calls I can tell you that there is as much variation in vulvas as in penises; most nude models I’ve seen have fairly subtle labia majora and well-defined labia minora, but I’ve seen girls in real life who had huge labia majora and almost no labia minora or vice-versa.  Some labia are quite wrinkly, others smoother, and they vary in color and appearance.  Apparently there’s even some variation in vulva-shape preference between different men’s magazines, or at least the photography makes it seem so; once on a multi-girl call I had a stripper tell me, “Oh, you have a pretty little Playboy pussy, but I have a big, nasty Hustler pussy!”  It seemed as though she meant it as a compliment, so I took it as one.

The clitoris actually varies more in size than the penis does; 75% of it is inside a woman’s body, and though its full length is roughly 10 cm the exposed portion ranges from 2-60 mm.  Though it is usually hidden by the clitoral hood it is completely exposed in some women and totally effaced in others; a “recessed clitoris” is completely below the surface and reveals itself only by stimulation (if at all).  But none of this can be explained to jackasses; girls with unusually-shaped genitalia are sometimes insulted by rude clients, and I’ve even heard of ignoramuses accusing girls of being post-operative transsexuals because their vulvas don’t “look right” to these (usually young) men, who obviously consider themselves some sort of sex experts because they’ve been with a couple of dozen women.  Fortunately, older men have more experience and therefore realize that the genitalia of women, like those of men, come in all shapes and sizes.

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