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Posts Tagged ‘Neither Addiction nor Epidemic’

You might as well flip a coin.  –  Maria Hartwig, on “deception detection”

Saving Them From Themselves (#681)

This story asks us to feel sorry for a man who was hoist with his own petard:

…[A high] school [principal in]…Colorado…[has been] accused of possessing child pornography…Bradley Bass…is facing up to 12 years in prison and the possibility of being branded a sex offender [just as the teenagers he was trying to catch would have been]…Bass violated a Colorado law that says even unintentionally possessing explicit images of [legal minor]s is…having child pornography…The case began when Bass and…[his boss] Scott Hodgson…[seiz]ed [students’ phones based on a rumor and]…found photos on a few students’ phones, saved in the disappearing photo application Snapchat.  Worried the boys [might escape having their lives destroyed by “child porn” charges via the expedient of]…delet[ing] the photos by logging into their Snapchat accounts remotely, Bass used his work cellphone to take photos of the students’ phones…After police learned the administrators had taken photos of the boys’ phones, they arrested them [just as they wanted the students to be arrested]…

Absolute Corruption (#867)

The prosecutor in this case rode it to become attorney general of Massachusetts:

…Gov. Charlie Baker [of] Massachusetts…[has] recommended pardons for Gerald “Tooky” Amirault and Cheryl Amirault Lefave, who were convicted of sexually abusing young children at their Malden day care…in the [Satanic Panic]…of the…1980s…[despite] the…scientific [and practical absurdity of the claims]…Baker’s office included in its announcement of the pardons a statement of approval from former Attorney General Tom Reilly, who fought as Middlesex district attorney in the 1990s to keep the Amiraults and their mother in prison…

Welcome to the Future (#1191)

Calling 911 = calling the cops. Never call the cops for any reason whatsoever:

[A cop named] Eric Matthews decided Jessica Logan probably killed her baby before he talked to a single eyewitness or collected…any evidence…the coroner hadn’t [even] announced a cause of death.  What Matthews did have was a recording of Logan’s 911 call…[from which he magically divined that]…the 25-year-old…had likely staged the scene to cover up a murder…Matthews…reach[ed this bizarre, megalomaniacal conclusion because]…he had taken a two-day law enforcement training course called “911 homicide: Is the caller the killer?”…the [pseudoscience has]…spread across the country and burrowed deep into the justice system, largely without notice…defense lawyers and judges…often learn…[of] the technique for the first time in the courtroom…[but] hundreds of [cops and other sociopaths and psychopaths]…who have taken the course…now present themselves as experts, able to divine truth and deception — and guilt and innocence — from the word choice, cadence and even grammar of people reporting emergencies…

Neither Addiction Nor Epidemic (#1233)

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

A…pastor at Faith Baptist Church in Round Rock, Texas who was caught with…child pornography…[tried to excuse his behavior by blaming it on] an addiction…David Lloyd Walther now faces federal charges for distribution, receipt, transportation and possession of child pornography…[includ]ing an image of a nude boy with a collar on his neck and being sexually abused, a similar image of a female toddler…images of nude young boys and girls being restrained by ropes and tools…[and] a bestiality video involving a dog and a female toddler “likely less than three years old”…

Property of the State (#1271)

Women of childbearing age should avoid Alabama entirely if at all possible:

Another Alabama woman has been jailed for using drugs while pregnant.  But this time there’s a twist: she wasn’t actually pregnant.  Her young child merely told a social worker that she was, according to the woman’s lawsuit against…Etowah County…[which locked her in a cage instead of just giving her a] pregnancy test…Etowah County… “has prosecuted more than 150 women on pregnancy-related charges in recent years,” Pregnancy Justice said.  “Of the more than 1,700 pregnancy-related criminalization cases Pregnancy Justice has documented from 1973 through 2020, Alabama leads the nation with more than 600 cases, and Etowah County leads the state.”  Freeman is now suing [pregnancy-persecuting cop Brandi] Fuller and Etowah County Sheriff Jonathon Horton…

Unsafe for Human Consumption (#1279)

Oh, what a surprise:

[A fantasy that] Halloween candy collected in [Calgary, Alberta was] tainted with fentanyl…is [of course bogus, but the]…RCMP are continuing to [search for some person whose life they can ruin on a bogus charge of]…illicit tampering…a[nother] woman [claimed that] that she found a sewing needle in the wrapping of a chocolate bar her child received while trick-or-treating on the same Halloween night [in the same small city even though it has ever actually happened anywhere since at least the Second World War]…

To Molest and Rape (#1286)

Think a non-cop would’ve been given a mere six years for this?

 A [typical and representative] Charleston [Illinois cop] who fled the country after being charged with three sex crimes was sentenced…to [a mere] six years in prison on lesser charges…David Iwaniw…pleaded guilty…to a charge of official misconduct…[for raping a 17-year-old girl and filming it]…Judge James Glenn sentenced Iwaniw to three years in prison on the official misconduct charge and another three years for fleeing the country, with credit for 313 days already served…[after the rape he told his victim that he would] “hunt her down if she told anyone what happened and that if she told, no one would believe her because he was a police officer”…

 

I find paywalls distasteful, and so many people find this blog valuable as a resource I just can’t bring myself to install one.  Furthermore, I find ad delivery services (whose content I have no say over) even more distasteful.  But as I’m now semi-retired from sex work, I can’t self-sponsor this blog by myself any longer.  So if you value my writing enough that you would pay to see it if it were paywalled, please consider subscribing; there are four different levels to fit all budgets.  Or if that doesn’t work for you, please consider showing your generosity with a one-time donation; you can Paypal to maggiemcneill@earthlink.net or else email me at the same address to make other arrangements.  Thanks so much!

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It’s clear in a lot of places that there is just total denial of reality.  –  Alison Macrina

Torture Chamber 

Your “leaders” refer to this as “correction”:

[Bureaucrats who mismanage New York] city jails [were] recently [forced to] share…photos and videos from Rikers Island with assistant district attorneys in Manhattan, giving…prosecutors…a…look at the squalid and deadly conditions [to] which [they routinely condemn poor people who have not been convicted of any crime]…The…presentation…[included] a man defecating in his shorts due to a lack of toilets in the intake area and then being left in his soiled clothes for 11 hours until another [prisoner]…brought him new clothes; a [prisoner] locked in a cage shower for nearly 24 hours before he injured himself; and [prisoners] dragging sick people to medical care, and even administering chest compressions themselves, because [screws were off fucking around somewhere instead of doing their jobs.  People condemned to this hell-hole by]…prosecutors…face months, and sometimes years, waiting for court hearings…most…have not been convicted of crimes…

You Were Warned (#1119)

Indian politicians use the same high-sounding airy-fairy excuses to censor the internet as those in the West:

The…Indian government has ordered the country’s internet service providers to block 67 adult sites for violating a new IT law passed in 2021…using the…[rather vague excuse] of “tarnishing the image of modesty of women”…Although most mainstream Indian newspapers avoided mentioning which sites were the latest to be subjected to government censorship, India Express has published a spreadsheet that lists the sites, which brings the total number…banned by the Indian government to 857…

Choke Point (#1159)

PayPal is becoming an active threat to civil liberties:

Access to online payment systems is crucial for the innumerable individuals and organizations that rely on financial support for their expressive activity.  It’s essential to content creators’ ability to earn a living, to websites’ and other businesses’ ability to raise revenue, to fundraising by political candidates and nonprofit organizations, and to everyday Americans’ ability to consume content and support causes they believe in.  When payment processing services act as political hall monitors or moral arbiters…they present a grave threat to free expression.  A small number of companies dominate the space, allowing them to wield significant control over the speech environment by denying service to users who express disfavored views or wade into controversial subject matter…When consumer choice borders on illusory, any argument that those dissatisfied…should simply seek other payment methods is not particularly convincing — or realistic…

Neither Addiction Nor Epidemic (#1164) 

It’s always a pleasure to watch experts trash harmful sex myths:

Treatment for “sex addiction” is booming, even though it frequently destroys marriages and the individuals it “treats”.  It’s expensive, moralistic, and is obsessed with sex while understanding very little about it…most professionals offering sex addiction treatment (including the movement’s 1985 founder, Patrick Carnes) have no training in human sexuality.  Very few sex therapists—the country’s clinical experts in human sexuality—offer such treatment, because they don’t believe in the so-called disease.  But…the “sex addiction” concept provides the dignity of something that sounds like a medical diagnosis, which gratifies both betrayer and betrayed.  Sex addiction treatment simultaneously trivializes sex, and sees everything involving a penis as sexual.  The treatment typically ignores a couple’s power dynamics; how painful it can be to lose not just sex but touching and affection; the huge range of normal sexual desire and expression; and the simple fact that for most people, sex is about more than sex…

Thought Control (#1253)

I never would’ve thought my first profession would become as much a target for violent authoritarians as my second:

In the last [few] weeks, at least a dozen public libraries across the U.S. received threats that resulted in canceled events and systemwide closures…bomb and active shooter threats [were sent] to public library systems in Nashville, Fort Worth, Denver, Salt Lake City, Boston, and other cities…some…[were] directed at LGBTQ events…[while] other[s]…seemed to have no obvious motive but come at a time when libraries and library workers have increasingly become targets of [political] harassment.  Public libraries were also closed statewide in Hawaii over [a recent] weekend due to an “unspecified threat”…[many of] the threats were received via digital reference points that allow patrons to communicate with library workers…through direct chat, email, or SMS functions…

The Next Target (#1272)

Most Americans still believe France is a sex-positive society:

A French Senate committee has issued a virulently anti-porn report comparing the adult industry with “hell” and recommending state regulation and censorship…The report is the result of six months of hearings about the adult industry…[dominated by] a group of feminist associations aiming to abolish all sex work…Le Mouvement du nid, Osez le féminisme and les Effronté·es…The…report recommends the [inven]tion of a new crime, “Encouraging a Criminal Act in Case of Sexual Violence in the Context of Pornography”…making it a criminal offense to even write or speak, without explicit condemnation, about porn that someone else or the state considers “sexual violence”…

To Molest and Rape (#1273)

Most rapist cops have multiple underage victims:

A [typical and representative] Philadelphia [cop]…sexually abus[ed] young girls and threaten[ed] witnesses…Patrick Heron…faces more than one dozen counts related to [rape, molestation and child porn]…”This is not only about terrible conduct, it’s about a…terrible effort at cover-up, intimidation and abuse of pretty much every process you can imagine,” [reformist DA Larry] Krasner said…

 

I find paywalls distasteful, and so many people find this blog valuable as a resource I just can’t bring myself to install one.  Furthermore, I find ad delivery services (whose content I have no say over) even more distasteful.  But as I’m now semi-retired from sex work, I can’t self-sponsor this blog by myself any longer.  So if you value my writing enough that you would pay to see it if it were paywalled, please consider subscribing; there are four different levels to fit all budgets.  Or if that doesn’t work for you, please consider showing your generosity with a one-time donation; you can Paypal to maggiemcneill@earthlink.net or else email me at the same address to make other arrangements.  Thanks so very much!

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Prostitution is a profession and sex workers are entitled to dignity and equal protection under the law.  –  The Supreme Court of India

Follow Your Bliss

The naive believe that “child predators” are creepy dudes who hang out at playgrounds; in reality, they are largely people in positions of authority over their preferred targets:

A [Missouri] man [named Scott F. Burow]…who spent more than 30 years working as a deputy juvenile officer in Missouri state court has been indicted in United States District Court on a felony charge of sex trafficking of a minor…[for paying a] 15 year…old…ward of the state of Illinois…[for sex] and…secretly videotaping her…

Policing for Profit

Cops will never stop doing this as long as the state keeps giving them pretexts:

A [gang] of [cops] conducted illegal searches and arrests in New Jersey as a pretext to rob residents out of cash…On May 26, a federal jury convicted Michael Cheff on…conspiracy…and…falsification of a police report…Cheff supervised a [gang] of [thugs who] worked together…between 2016 and 2018, [the gang regularly]…conducted illegal stops and searches of individuals in their vehicles, on the streets or in their homes and [robbed] them…Cheff…[got] a cut [in exchange for]…approving false reports…that…lied about…the…[armed robber]ies…

If Men Were Angels

The problem isn’t Catholicism, Christianity or even religion; it’s blind submission to authority:

A community rabbi from Jerusalem w[as]…indicted…for repeated sexual crimes against newly religious women.  Rabbi Moshe Yazdi…rap[ed], sexually assault[ed] and sodomiz[ed]…women while fraudulently obtaining their “consent” by telling them these were religious acts and therefore they had to submit to his demands.  He is also suspected of exploiting them financially.  So far, 10 women…have filed complaints against him…[revealing that] he presented himself to them as one of the 36 righteous people who, according to Jewish tradition, ensure the world’s continued existence at any given moment…Some of the crimes were committed against brides on their wedding day…

Neither Addiction Nor Epidemic (#568)

Looks like the judge didn’t buy his “porn addiction” excuse:

Josh Duggar, former director of the lobbying arm of the…anti-porn Family Research Council, has been sentenced to 12 years in prison for downloading child sexual abuse material…Duggar was known as a reality TV figure for his role on TLC’s 19 Kids and Counting, a show highlighting his extended family…[which] TLC canceled…in 2015 after it was revealed that Duggar had molested members of his family and a babysitter…The Arkansas trial also exposed the failure of…”porn filter” Covenant Eyes, a business highly ballyhooed by anti-porn crusaders…federal investigators found that Covenant Eyes had been installed on Duggar’s computer so that it could monitor and report his internet use to his wife, Anna…however, an investigator reported that “Covenant Eyes was unable to detect Duggar’s internet usage after a password-protected network was installed on his computer”…

For Those Who Think Legalization is a Good Idea (#737)

Indian sex workers have awaited this ruling for years:

The Supreme Court…told police that they should refrain from interfering and taking criminal action against…sex workers…[who] should not be arrested, penalised, harassed, or victimised through raids on brothels because…sex work is not illegal and only running the brothel is unlawful.  A sex worker’s child should not be deprived of her mother’s care “on the ground that she is in the sex trade”…The court also instructed cops not to discriminate against sex workers who lodge a complaint, if the offence against them is of sexual nature…The bench observed that use of condoms “should not be construed by the police as evidence of offence by sex workers”…[but unfortunately will still allow cops to abduct] sex workers [under the pretext of “]rescue[“] and [lock them in cages] “for not less than two-three years”…The apex court also ad[monished media to take] “utmost care not to reveal the identities of sex workers, during arrest, raid and rescue operations, whether as victims or accused and not to publish or telecast any photos that would result in disclosure of such identities”…[pointing out that] voyeurism is a criminal offence…

The Last Shall Be First (#1151) 

Laws like this have already been declared unconstitutional by the 4th Circuit:

Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt…signed into law a bill that requires students at public schools…[including] charter schools to use restrooms and locker rooms that match the sex listed on their birth certificates…Transgender students who decline to use the restroom required under the measure would have to use “a single-occupancy restroom or changing room” provided by the school.  The measure, which cleared the state Legislature last week, will take effect immediately because it was passed with an emergency clause.  School districts that [refuse] to comply…could be sued by school parents

The Next Target (#1151)

Prohibitionists’ real goal is to completely ban online sex work:

[Tobias Schmid, ] the local official behind the crusade for Germany to require age verification for viewing sexual content…is now seeking to expand to all of Europe the use of his new [surveillance] tool, KIVI, which automatically scans all online content to determine which images are not compliant with the law…KIVI was developed by Berlin-based Condat under…Schmid’s supervision and is now reportedly being used by all 14 state media authorities in Germany…to detect [images in] categories like “extremism, hate speech, swastikas or the glorification of drugs,” Schmid also included “pornography” as a target for the new surveillance engine

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Schools are using [cops]…to…do their dirty work.  –  Jackie Ross

License to Rape (#932)

Cops raping whores is so ubiquitous, others pose as cops to facilitate rape:

…hundreds of…men claiming to be [Irish cops have been raping,] abusing and harassing sex workers…The [attacks] range from demanding [sex]…worker[s submit to rape], to violent abuse, including [forcible] rape, choking, and assault…at least two [incidents involved] men…produc[ing] handcuffs and attempt[ing] to [abduct] the women…one such [rapist]…targets foreign sex workers due to their particular vulnerability and demands [they submit to rape or else face]…deportation…

Moloch (#1048) 

Pigs in schools are a menace which should be abolished:

…Across Illinois, police are ticketing thousands of students a year for…adolescent behavior once handled only by the principal’s office…Ticketing students violates…an Illinois law that prohibits schools from fining students as a form of discipline.  Instead of issuing fines directly, school officials [snitch]…to police, who then ticket them for municipal ordinance violations…Another state law prohibits schools from notifying police when students are truant…but…dozens of school districts routinely [violate]…this law…At the assembly-line hearings where…these cases are handled, students have no right to legal representation and little chance to defend themselves against charges that can have long-term consequences…fines can be hundreds of dollars, presenting an impossible burden for some families, and administrative or court fees of up to $150 are often tacked on.  Unpaid fines are sometimes sent to collections or deducted from parents’ tax refunds.  And, unlike records from juvenile court, these cases can’t be expunged under state law…

Disaster (#1072)

The FOSTA challenge is proceeding yet again:

Two human rights organizations, a digital library, a sex worker activist, and a certified massage therapist [have] appealed a ruling that denied  their constitutional challenge to FOSTA…an overbroad and censorious internet law that harms sex workers.  The plaintiffs, Woodhull Freedom Foundation, Human Rights Watch, The Internet Archive, Alex Andrews, and Eric Koszyk, have been challenging the law since it was enacted in 2018.  The district court…dismissed the case last month, [pretend]ing that FOSTA did not violate the First Amendment…

To Molest and Rape (#1130)

Calling himself a monster is the first honest thing he’s said since he was caught:

A [typical and representative] Boston [cop who was president of the pig union] is now pleading guilty to…child rape…Patrick Rose Sr…pleaded guilty to 33 charges in connection with the rape and abuse of at least six children…as far back as the 1990s and as recently as four years ago…Rose [was first caught] in 1995, but he was allowed to keep his badge for another 20 years…

Guinea Pigs (#1191)

This has been going on for years, and platforms do nothing to stop it:

[Pigs] of the Minneapolis [cop shop]…engaged in [unauthorized] surveillance of local Black leaders and organizations…as just one [of] a litany of other abuses that included “[murder]ing community members of color and Indigenous community members” at a highly disproportionate rate, according to a [new] report…[showing] a pattern…of racial discrimination…extending over a period of at least 10 years…includ[ing] the “covert use” of fake social media accounts to spy on local Black residents who were not suspects in any criminal probes…The groups included the local chapters of the NAACP and Urban League.  [Lying pigs] used fake accounts to gain access to posts they could not otherwise read…commented on posts, sent private messages, and contributed to discussions…[while pretending to be] like-minded individuals and claim[ing], for example, that they met the targeted person at a prior demonstration or protest…

Opting Out (#1199) 

The worse the idea, the more eager politicians are to ape it:

The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe…issued a resolution…urging European nations to mandate online [censorship software] for “pornographic materials” on all devices, to be “systematically activated in public spaces, such as schools, libraries and youth clubs”…The PACE p[olitic]ians [also bloviated about… “addiction to pornography and…unhealthy sex.”  There is no scientific evidence for a clinical “addiction to pornography” and n[one of] the p[olitic]ians offered any definitions of what they consider “unhealthy sex” or…explained how these mandatory [censorship algorithms] would be coded and by whom…The…resolution includes a number of…suspiciously-sourced statements that seem to echo anti-porn propaganda by both religious activists and sex-worker-exclusionary feminists…

To Molest and Rape (#1220)

Another specimen of the garbage the state pays to violate kids:

A [cop paid by the state to stalk, harass, and spy on students] was arrested by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation for child molestation in Carrollton…Jerric Gilbert…[molested] an 11-year-old girl…

The TV station which produced this story felt compelled to defend a child molester by digging up someone to say what a great guy he is and how he never molested her son.

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Following a person’s movements 24 hours a day, day after day, will tell you where they live, where they work, who they spend time with, and who they are.  –  Nate Wessler

Bullies With Badges

Big heroes prove their manhood by terrorizing women:

[British cops] have been…ignoring the law in order to…bully, harass and intimidate…sex workers…[they have] raid[ed] sex workers’ premises [without warrants] and [refused] to identify themselves…In one [case, the cops]…shouted that “prostitution was illegal in the UK, told [their victim] that she was mentally ill, [ransack]ed the flat and [stole] her phones…a personal book containing her email address, passwords and phone numbers”…and [her] towels…claiming they needed to check them for semen…“After this aggressive and unreasonable behaviour officers then bizarrely asked Ms B if she was trafficked,” [Niki] Adams [of ECP] wrote…A spokesp[ig claimed the cops]…did not need a warrant as they were carrying out a routine welfare check…They [lied that their victim voluntarily] invited [them] inside…[the spokespig also oinked out the word “]safeguarding[“, which is a UK cop euphemism for arrest]…

To Molest and Rape

In which “child” is used to mean “teen” and “gang-like group” is used to mean “gang”:

[Cops] in an exclusive Santa Ana Police [gang]…who share…skull tattoos have [repeatedly brutalized and molested citizens]…both [while wearing their magical clown costumes] and [not, and unsurprisingly] faced no [consequences of any kind]…Five of…[them] were [observed by numerous witnesses] verbally harassing [and molesting] two teenage girls…at a…restaurant [in 2020].  In a 2021 incident, [a politician named] Johnathan Hernandez reported seeing…[two of them] holding a struggling woman [down] in a parking lot…[while] groping…and [verbally abusing]…her…

While I sympathize with the desire to make these thugs look as bad as possible, infantilizing victims of sexual assault does not help them.

Stalkers in Blue

Even seemingly-consensual sex with a cop may be something else:

A…Belchertown [Massachusetts cop named]…Michael Beaupre…pleaded not guilty to 11 charges of unlawful wiretapping and 10 charges of photographing an unsuspecting nude person…Beaupre’s [girlfriend]…discovered a thumb drive at his home, which contained a folder of images of her naked, including performing sexual acts.  Those videos were taken without her knowledge…[and] permission [and directly against her] consent…Beaupre had previously asked her if he could film their sexual activities and that she “emphatically stated no”…[cops also] discovered…”approximately 60 folders with women’s names,” and that those folders contained hundreds of videos…13 [of the] folders…[contained] surreptitious recordings…[and] they were able to identify seven of those women…filmed from several devices in Beaupre’s bedroom and downstairs in his living room…between 2017 and 2021…

I Spy (#1064)

Modern fascism has spun a terrifyingly-extensive surveillance net:

According to Brendon Clark of Anomaly Six…the combination of its cellphone location-tracking technology with the social media surveillance provided by Zignal Labs would permit the U.S. government to effortlessly spy on Russian forces…or…track Chinese nuclear submarines.  To prove that the technology worked, Clark pointed A6’s powers inward, spying on the National Security Agency and CIA, using their own cellphones against them…there’s a good chance that A6 knows an immense amount about you.  The company is one of many that purchases vast reams of location data, tracking hundreds of millions of people around the world…without [thei]r knowledge or informed consent, relying on disclosures buried in the legalese of the sprawling terms of service that the companies involved count on you never reading…

To Molest and Rape (#1189)

Remember when the UK claimed it could protect women from predatory cops by paying other predatory cops to lurk in clubs?

A [Scottish cop] is to go on trial facing charges of sexual assault in Aberdeen and Dundee.  Ross Campbell…a[ssaulted seven women]…at various nightclubs…in 2019 and 2020…He [claims they either all wanted it or are lying]…

Neither Addiction Nor Epidemic (#1202)

At least some reporters are finally getting skeptical of this popular excuse for bad behavior:

Daniel Andrew Karas…confessed to [talking dirty online to a cop fantasy role-playing online as a 13-year-old girl, but blamed it on an imaginary “]crippling adult porn addiction[“.  In court, he self-indulgently went on at great length about his religious beliefs]…and…bizarre[ly claimed that]… “pornography can even be a source of domestic violence, because if they don’t get what they see on porn from their partner then they could get violent”…

Unsafe for Human Consumption (#1208)

Politicians are always happy to indulge cops’ violent fantasies:

…Ohio’s Attorney General Dave Yost is [attempt]ing [to panic citizens about]…Nitazenes, [moronically labeled] “Frankenstein Opioids” [by prohibitionists.  The drugs are supposedly]…more than 40-times [as potent as]…fentanyl…Nitazines are not approved for medical use anywhere in the world but are currently being made in secret labs [due to the Iron Law of Prohibition.  But rather than telling the truth, that the War on Drugs is to blame, Yost preferred to repeat childish campfire tales about how cops] who just touched a little fentanyl immediately fell out, overdosed and were rushed to the hospital…[even though fentanyl cannot be absorbed through the skin]…

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I have to stop cowering.  –  Jennifer Chen

Secret Squirrel (#895)

How to totally destroy your relationship with your teen offspring:

…Intrusive surveillance has become a parental rite of passage in America.  But the parental panopticon is not a mark of maturity and responsibility but rather of paranoia, distrust, and devolvement.  From smartphones to schools to entertainment, parents can track the near totality of their children’s lives with ease…The simple, slick, and seductive interfaces are designed to make parents feel warm, fuzzy, and responsible…[but] constant vigilance, research suggests, does the opposite of increasing teen safety.  A University of Central Florida study of 200 teen/parent pairs found that parents who used monitoring apps were more likely to be authoritarian, and that teens who were monitored were…more likely to be exposed to unwanted explicit content and to bullying.  Another study, from the Netherlands, found that monitored teens were more secretive and less likely to ask for help.  It’s no surprise that most teens…feel that monitoring poisons a relationship.  And there are very real situations, especially for queer and trans teens, where their safety may depend on being able to explore without exposing all the details to their family

Neither Addiction Nor Epidemic (#1062)

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

A self-[describ]ed porn addict and his mother wept with relief…after a[n Illinois] judge decided not to send [him] to prison for…child pornography…Joshua R. Skinner…was sentenced to 36 months probation…in…a…plea…deal…[which] also sentenced Skinner to 180 days [time served]…and [life on the “sex offender” registry].  Skinner [also blamed] his behavior…[on] heroin…alcohol…[and] cannabis…[and babbled about] God…

It’s at least a slight improvement to see the headline writer put “addict” in scare quotes.

To Molest and Rape (#1148) 

Hey, female cops; how’s that collaboration with the police state working out?

A [female] New York City [cop has reveal]ed [that] her former commanding officer…serially rap[ed] her for more than a year while they worked together…In [her] lawsuit…Gillian Roberts…said she hoped to stay on the Yankee Stadium detail until her retirement, but decided to leave the department early last month when she could no longer handle the stress of becoming an “unwilling sex slave” to her “perverted” captain, Jeffrey Brienza…an NYPD spokesman said the “incident is under internal review”…

“Under internal review” in this case means “deciding whether to pay her off, claim she’s crazy and/or wanted it, or cut Brienza loose.”

To Molest and Rape (#1160)

“Police explorer” programs are nothing but grooming schemes for predatory cops:

A [typical and representative] Fairfax County [Virginia cop] has been convicted of [molesting] a 16-year-old [girl who parents foolishly allowed her to join a “police explorer” program].  John Grimes…[started grooming] the teen [by taking her] on ride-alongs.  The FBI tipped off Fairfax County police after Grimes applied to become a special agent and underwent background checks…

Virtual Imperialism (#1175)

Worst of all, Western governments are looking at this as a model:

The Chinese government, which has built an extensive digital infrastructure and security apparatus to [suppress] dissent on its own platforms, is going to even greater lengths to extend its internet dragnet to unmask and silence those who [tell the truth about] the country on Twitter, Facebook and other international social media.  These new investigations…use advanced…s[pyware to root through] public records and databases to find all the…personal information and international social media presence of people who critize Chinese tyranny, including]…those living beyond China’s borders…The digital [crusade] represents the [logical development] of the government’s vast campaign to counter [inconvenient facts about] China.  In recent years, the Communist Party has raised bot armiesdeployed [useful idiots] and marshaled [shills] to push its [propaganda] and drown out [facts].  The police have taken it a step further, hounding and silencing those who dare to talk back…and…threatening relatives [of those outside China], in an effort to get them to delete content deemed [embarassing to the rulers]…

Torture Chamber (#1181)

Funny how often people “die suddenly” while cops are brutalizing them:

The [murder] of a Black Kansas teenager [by] multiple [screws who sat on him] at a juvenile jail…was [actually] ruled a homicide…Cedric Lofton, 17…[died by asphyxiation on]…Sept. 26, two days after he was [abducted by cops who claimed he touched them]…in Wichita…five [grown screws sat on]…the unarmed, 135-pound…[boy until he died]…Sedgwick County [“authorities” are hiding the identities of the murderers and have rewarded them with]…paid [vacations]…

Rotting Fruit (#1192)

Does anyone really believe this wasn’t a foregone conclusion?

More than two years after Jeffrey Epstein’s su[spicious death] behind bars, and following a [predictably-quick] trial, his longtime companion Ghislaine Maxwell was found guilty of multiple sex trafficking charges.  A New York City jury [decided] Maxwell was Epstein’s chief enabler, recruiting and grooming young girls for him to abuse…

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This [bill]…is a sickening extension of the culture war.  –  Neil Coyle

Pretext

Conscription of unconsenting drivers into copaganda will continue until reporters stop parroting cop PR releases:

[A regular] holiday [PR scam] was recently [repeated] by…Mesa, Arizona…[cops who]…pulled [motorists] over for [bullshit] violation[s, then]…offered [them] turkey[s]…some [people were so traumatized they]…were…[brought] to tears…many U.S. police departments [subject drivers to similar publicity stunts around holidays every year]…

Lack of Evidence (#960)

As I’ve pointed out before, it’s very easy for cops and prosecutors to circumvent these supposed “guarantees”:

[Politicians and cops] have heard sex workers say over and over that they feel unsafe reporting crimes to police because they…[will] be prosecuted for their own [consensual] activity…[But instead of simply making it illegal to arrest adults for consensual sex, politician] Brianna Titone…said she intends to bring a “safe reporting” bill…to create a guarantee that [women criminalized by the state] can report crimes without fear of any legal retribution.  It’s not unlike a 2012 law Colorado adopted to guarantee immunity for illegal drug users who report overdoses.  [But politicians who want to ensure the bill is toothless are vomiting out dysphemisms like]…”offense”…and [“]illegal…prostitution[“]…Desiree Collins, a former sex worker closely involved in advocacy work…said she is skeptical…that sex workers would take advantage of it…[because] “there’s no way to maintain anonymity…You’re talking about a community where part of the culture is distrust, because distrust keeps you safe”…

Politicians’ and cops’ repeated claims that they want women who live by our wits to trust lying rapist thugs who hunt us for sport would be funny if it weren’t so ugly and dangerous.

Rooted in Racism (#966)

This was the endgame of “anti-trafficking” schemes all along:

The Royal Yacht Association (RYA) has warned its members against rescuing migrants at sea amid fears they could be prosecuted and jailed for people smuggling….the Home Office’s Nationality and Borders Bill…removes the words “for gain” and increases the sentences for [actions politicians decide to label] smuggling…to life imprisonment….[politician] Neil Coyle…said…“The clause requires…people to watch other people die…It is in breach of our international obligations and law”…

Neither Addiction Nor Epidemic (#1090)

Blaming bad behavior on an imaginary “addiction” is more effective when you control the board:

Alex Shchegol was reinstated as president of ASA College, a for-profit institution that has campuses in New York and Florida, three years after he was forced out for sexual misconduct…At least 10 female ASA students and employees had accused Shchegol of…rape, sending unwanted [dick] pic[s]…and coercing students who relied on him for visas or employment into [submitting to rape]…The allegations had resulted in more than $2 million in out-of-court settlements…Shchegol was reinstated after he replaced five of the seven members of the board of the institution, which he owns.  Shchegol mentioned a letter from a sex addiction therapist affirming that she had worked with him on concepts like “victim empathy” and “accountability”…[however,] he [also claimed]…he was “completely innocent”…and…hung up when asked repeatedly if he’d had sex with any students…

Scapegoats (#1169)

This sordid saga finally wraps up after three years:

A [typical and representative] Bossier City [cop] was sentenced to 20 years in prison for possession of child pornography and sexually abusing his dog….Terry Yetman…was sentenced Tuesday to four years for each of the five counts of sexual abuse of animals…[and] 20 years for…child pornography.  The sentences will run concurrently.  When he is released, Yetman will have to register as a sex offender…

The Cop Myth (#1178)

Cops murder more people than any other group in the US:

…a Newark, New Jersey [cop] has been arrested after…fatally [running over] a nurse with his car — and then taking the body home to decide what to do…Louis Santiago was charged with reckless vehicular homicide, desecrating human remains, and other charges after he fatally hit…Damian Dymka and then stuffed his lifeless body into his car…and…took [it]…home…[to ask his mommy] what t[o]…do.  Ultimately…Santiago[‘s cop]…father [turned him in]…State Police found Dymka’s body still in the back of Santiago’s car…

Pyrrhic Victory (#1185)

All too often, evil arrives cloaked in the mantle of expediency:

Delta…[has been joined by] JetBlue and American Airlines…[in] starting to test facial recognition for boarding and TSA checkpoints.  The TSA is also [collaborating] with companies to design [more invasive casual] screeners so passengers don’t have to remove anything from their bags and can leave their shoes on…TSA and airlines are [excusing this by saying it will] speed up airport security while making it safer…

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[The Backpage] case is a hot mess.  –  Michael Piccarreta

The Punitive Mindset (#872) 

Much more of this, please:

I was incredibly disappointed when I recently learned that music artists are partnering with telecom corporations in the prison industryPrison telecom is a $1.4 billion industry dominated by just two corporations that charge families extortionate rates to communicate with their incarcerated loved ones.  One of these…is Aventiv Technologies, which [owns the]…notoriously predatory…Securus and JPay.  Securus controls roughly 40 percent of the prison and jail telecom market and charges as much as a dollar per minute for a simple call.  JPay charges similarly egregious rates for everything from money transfers to emails…And both…routinely face legal action for an extensive list of unlawful practices…including the unlawful recording of sacred attorney-client calls…As music executives and artists, we should…not [be] cutting back-office deals with…the prison industry…I’m making a pledge not to collaborate with corporations that profit from incarceration…And I urge my fellow music executives and artists to join me…

Neither Addiction Nor Epidemic (#957) 

“Porn addiction” is still being used as an excuse for violent crimes:

Two 11-year-old “porn addicts” have been arrested in India after they allegedly stoned a six-year-old girl to death for refusing to perform sex acts they had watched on their parents’ phones…Authorities arrested the two…along with another eight-year-old who is thought to have [stood guard while] the [others] murder[ed] the…girl…children are seen as having criminal responsibility from the age of seven in India…

Subtle Pimping (#1013)

While American cops favor VR porn games, Kazakh cops prefer LARPing:

A…week-long simulation exercise on combating…migration…started on 11 October 2021 in Almaty.  The simulation exercise [refers to this migration control as “]Combating Trafficking in Human Beings[“, following the racist European practice]…this training exercise offers f[antasies in place of]…real-life [situations], using actors to create [fantasy] trafficking scenarios.  A fictitious brothel..a[nd] massage parlor…were…created to…[indoctrin]ate c[ops in the fantasy version] of human trafficking…and sexual exploitation…

Torture Chamber (#1037)

The PREA is just feel-good nonsense as long as screws have absolute power over their victims:

…a 23-year-old woman…committed suicide in a [Forks,] Washington jail [after] she tried to report sexual harassment by a guard, but her complaint was [ignored].  Months later, that same [screw] was sentenced to prison for [raping] four other women…the family of Kimberly Bender [is suing jail] officials…[for allow]ing Bender…[to] be…tormented by a [typical and representative screw] with a known misconduct record…John Gray…[repeat]edly tormented Bender at night, leering at her, making “vile” comments, and frequently waking her up.  Bender, “struggling with heroin withdrawal, was unable to sleep, rest, or relax because of…Gray”…wh[o was]…previously…fire[d from a different cage stack] in 2018 for m[oc]king…a training on the Prison Rape Elimination Act…[by making disgusting] “comments and sounds such as, ‘Here we go’ and ‘oooh…oh yeah baby…mmmmm'” during a [scene showing]…a woman [groping]…another woman [under the pretext of a “search”]…PREA is [well-known to be] largely toothless.  Since the reporting rules went into effect in 2012, reports of sexual assaults in prisons and jails have dramatically increased, especially at local and county jails…

The Convergence of Censors

Vomit out the right buzzwords and you can censor at will:

The Waterloo Region District School Board is undertaking a multi-year review of its library collections to [censor] any texts deemed “[magically] harmful to staff and students.”  Graham Shantz, coordinating [bureaucrat, made a bunch of incoherent, pseudointellectual excuses about why stunting students’ intellectual growth and controlling their thoughts is actually a good thing, belching out words like]…”inappropriate…questionable and…pedagogical framework”…[to support plain old-fashioned book burning]…Earlier this year, the Ottawa-Carleton District School Board removed William Golding’s classic Lord of the Flies from its curriculum after [bureaucrats vomited out the words]…white, male power structures [at librarians].  Other books recently removed from Canadian school libraries…in response to complaints [backed by fashionable pseudointellectual bullshit]…include Harper Lee’s To Kill A Mockingbird and Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale

To Molest and Rape (#1130)

Imagine a non-cop child rapist staying free for decades like this:

A [typical and representative] New York [cop] who for decades has delayed facing [trial for]…repeatedly rap[ing] and molest[ing] his daughter’s 12-year-old friend was arrested in Florida…Leonard Forte, who is now 80…was [found guilty] in Vermont in 1988…[but] the judge tossed the verdict…[because cop]…and…Forte persuaded prosecutors to delay the retrial because he [claimed to be terminally ill]…A USA Today investigation in 2019 revealed how Vermont prosecutors had mishandled the case [for over 25 years]…and exposed Forte’s dubious claims about his health…[thus shaming] Vermont’s Attorney General’s Office [into] reviv[ing] the case…

Dangerous Speech (#1184)

After presiding over an evil clown show for months, Brnovich does what an ethical judge would’ve done a year ago:

…Judge Susan Brnovich today recused herself from the [Backpage] trial…[without providing a] reason…the case ha[s] been reassigned by lot to…Judge Diane J. Humetewa…Brnovich…previously refused to recuse herself from the case [despite obvious]…conflict [of interest due to]…Brnovich’s [being married to the attorney general of Arizona, a noted prohibitionist with a history of disseminating anti-Backpage propaganda]…Humetewa is…the fourth judge on the case…Steven Logan was first assigned to the case…[but] recused himself with no explanation in March 2019.  The case was briefly assigned to…Douglas Rayes, who immediately recused himself sans explanation…Brnovich was then assigned the case…Tucson criminal defense attorney and former Arizona State Bar President Michael Piccarreta [pointed out that]…“Someone’s going to have to take a look at the government’s overreaching issues…No judge wants to have to deal with that”…prosecutorial misconduct in this case…[includes] the [intentional] destruction of exculpatory evidence…and…the [armed robbery] of millions of dollars in assets, including…more than $10 million from lawyers for the defense…

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[Do] they have a deal with the police…or is this simple freelance vigilantism?  –  Laura Agustín

Surplus Women

The same everywhere sex work is at all criminalized:

In light of the death of Nigerian sex worker Eunice Osayande, who was brutally murdered by a 17-year-old client in 2018, an ethnographic study on sex work in the area…was commissioned by the city of Schaerbeek…The sex workers who were interviewed stressed that they faced violence on a regular basis, but especially at night, including robberies and beatings…and people trying to have unprotected sex with them.  The women also spoke of discriminatory attacks, often by young people, and…highlighted that…they are often reluctant to call the police…

Decentralization (#313)

Did you ever wonder why the government stopped harassing bitcoin?

Coinbase will provide [ICE]…with [the] blockchain [surveillance] software…[it] has also provided…to the U.S. Secret Service and [UK] Inland Revenue…Details as to exactly what the ICE wants Coinbase software for are [being hidden]…Last year, Coinbase announced its desire to sell [the same surveillance] tools to…the [DEA] and [IRS]…

If Men Were Angels

Basically the same as a “youth pastor”:

A…California attorney and church leader was sentenced to 40 years…after pleading guilty to molesting young girls…Steven Matlak…[was first] arrested…in 2017…All of [his] victims were under the age of 10, with the youngest being five years old…Matlak…led a Bible study in his home for young members of the First Presbyterian Church…He [tried to claim] sex addiction [as an excuse] for his crimes, but the families did not accept the [attempted responsibility-dodge]…

Rotting Fruit

Presented without comment:

Prince Andrew…’s efforts to avoid facing…[an] American…lawsuit launched against him by…Virginia (Giuffre) Roberts…have now [failed.  British judges] accepted a request…“to formally contact Andrew about the civil proceedings launched in America”…Roberts’ lawyers have complained that Andrew…has thwarted efforts to serve him with the suit…[which] claims that when she was 17…[Jeffrey] Epstein forced her to have sex with Andrew at [Ghislaine] Maxwell’s London townhouse…

Negative Secondary Effects (#1122)

It’s rare for an article on sex work in the UK press to be so free of dysphemisms:

Blackpool Council announced in January th[at]…it planned to phase out lap dancing clubs in order to [protect THE CHILDREN!!!™ from dangerous sex rays]…The existing four clubs would be allowed to continue operating, but once those licences lapse for any reason they would not be renewed.  [Club] operators…[poin]t out [th]at…“The industry will be forced underground and girls will be tempted, if not forced to work…for private bachelor parties”…[without] security…or…”underground clubs or might have to get into more dangerous forms of sex work”…

Predictable Consequences (#1125)

Prohibitionists learned nothing from the Atlanta massacre last March:

In Arizona and across the country, [prohibitionists]…have set up massage parlors as [targets] for sex trafficking [hysteria].  Women [who travel] from China, Korea and other countries…may be [raped by cops pretending to “rescue” them, then caged] in unsanitary conditions [to await deportation].  The Arizona Republic and USA Today are [try]ing [to help cops commit] this…legal[ized abomination]…

Frontpage Confidential featured quotes from activists sharply criticizing this exercise in yellow journalism, directly intended to attract either organized or individual violence against migrant sex workers.

Droit du Seigneur (#1135)

What the people who enforce “sex trafficking” laws are really like:

Larry Allen Clay Jr., the [typical and representative]…police chief of [a] small town [in West Virginia]…is charged with sex trafficking a…17-year-old girl…[by paying her stepmother, Kristen] Naylor-Legg…[$50 to] rape…her…[the prosecutor thought it was super-important to note her rapist was]…wearing his [magic clown costume and]…rap[ed] her [in his pigmobile]…He…[later] told the teen “he could be her sugar daddy”…and [pimp by charging]…other [pigs]…$100 to rape her…

Note how deeply the “journalist” who wrote this buried the identity and responsibility of the actual initiator of this crime; they didn’t even print his picture.

CORRECTION: The Washington Post published this as if it were a new story, but in actuality it already appeared back in April and I failed to catch the repeat.

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The myth of sex addiction is a pathological view of male sexuality, sexual diversity, non-monogamy, and non-normative sexual desire.  –  David Ley

Here We Go Again 

Prohibitionism never, ever changes:

…in the early 20th century…prostitution became seen [by busybodies] as a social evil that concerned a wide range of [people who were completely univolved in it]…evangelical Christians, feminists, business leaders and medical experts demanded immediate and unrelenting repression of [sex work]…self-styled “abolitionists” in both the United States and the United Kingdom gained public support for their efforts by [spreading propaganda about a fantasized epidemic] of “white slavery”…the legislation they produced was antithetical to prostitutes’ interests…policies that sanctioned state control and punishment of prostitutes flourished…[but] rather than eliminating prostitution, the anti-prostitution movement simply changed the nature of the sex trade…and…subjected [all women] to increased state control.  During World War I, the “American Plan” authorized the arrest, inspection and detention of women suspected of carrying venereal disease…surveillance of women in the name of public health increasingly committed the U.S. to a “neo-regulationist” prostitution policy that controlled women’s bodies…

The article has some interesting information, but if you notice the faint reek of Swedish thinking (as if some cretin had stuffed used toilet paper down between the sofa cushions), it’s not your imagination.

Traffic Jam (#619)

You may remember that I called this as bullshit ten years ago:

St. Paul [Minnesota sow] Heather Weyker…[fabricated] an interstate sex trafficking ring run by Somali refugees…result[ing] in 30 indictments, 9 trials, and 0 convictions.  Hamdi Mohamud, then a 16-year-old refugee from Somalia, found herself caught up in that scheme in 2011, when one of Weyker’s witnesses, Muna Abdulkadir, tried to attack her and her friends at knifepoint.  Mohamud called the police…Weyker…arrested Mohamud and her friends for allegedly tampering with a federal witness, and Mohamud subsequently spent two years in jail before the trumped-up charges were dismissed…but…since [Weyker framed all those victims]…as part of a federal task force, she is entitled to absolute immunity and cannot be sued…Mohamud hopes to change that…by asking the Supreme Court to hear her case, which she made official last week…

No Difference (#888) 

American puritanism is a pox on the entire world:

One of the world’s most restrictive “anti-pornography” laws, the indecency statute passed by Uganda in 2014, has been struck by the nation’s Constitutional Court as unconstitutional…the law was “quashed” following pressure from women’s rights groups, with a panel of five judges unanimously ruling “that sections of the law that defined pornographic offenses, including a ban on ‘indecent’ clothing, were unconstitutional”…the…law…was [typically]…used for morality policing and led to…song lyrics and music videos…be[ing] labeled pornographic…[with] the…artists criminally liable…the [censorship law and an anti-LGBT law were passed due to lobbying by]…American evangelicals…[especially] the…International House of Prayer…the parent ministry of Exodus Cry

Neither Addiction Nor Epidemic (#1033) 

It’s always a pleasure to watch experts trash harmful sex myths:

…it’s important to recognize that the concept of sex addiction was introduced…in the 1980’s during the HIV/AIDS crisis.  As…a society, we were terrified of sexual excess, of non-monogamy, of casual sex, of sex outside relationships, and of gay male sex…It is not by accident…that gay men get diagnosed as sex addicts…around three times more than anybody else.  The second very large group…are people struggling with a moral conflict over their sexual desires…[due to growing] up in religious household or communities where they were taught that any sex other than hetero sex within marriage is a sin…the third group…[consists of] men who get in trouble for sexual behavior…who self-identify as sex addicts to avoid responsibility for those behaviors…going to sex workers is…literally a diagnostic criterion in the sex addiction screening test that many therapists use…sex workers are [therefore] framed as analogous to either a drug or a drug dealer…self-destructive things that help people destroy their lives…

Welcome to the Future (#1052)

Prohibition by human idiots is bad enough:

Over the past two decades, the US…has poured hundreds of millions of dollars into developing and maintaining state-level prescription drug databases…In the past few years…a single [fascist collusion] called Appriss has…merg[ed] the[se] into…a…national prescription drug registry…[managed by] algorithms to generate “data insights” and…[accessing] huge reservoirs of data outside state drug registries to arrive at them.  NarxCare…is Appriss’…“analytics tool”…that purports to instantly and automatically identify a patient’s risk of misusing opioids…the software mines state registries for [so-called] red flags indicating that she has engaged in “drug shopping” behavior…the[n]…assigns each patient a unique, comprehensive Overdose Risk Score…Appriss is adamant that a NarxCare score is not meant to supplant a doctor’s diagnosis.  But physicians ignore these numbers at their peril.  Nearly every state now uses Appriss software…and most legally require physicians and pharmacists to consult them…on penalty of losing their license.  In some states, p[igs]…can also [root in this database]…without a warrant…to prosecute both doctors and patients…

The Pro-Rape Coalition (#1096)

Sex workers and allies speak out about Nick Kristof’s latest anti-sex crusade:

Kristof’s “The Children of Pornhub” — a…[propaganda screed] dropped as 2020 was winding to a close…triggered the removal of millions of videos from Pornhub and led to both Mastercard and Visa cutting ties with the adult industry giant…protecting…l[egal minor]s [ca]n’t  [be accomplished with] sweeping legislation and widespread content moderation, which endanger the safety and income of sex workers [and the civil liberties of everyone]…“Treating child sexual abuse as a moral failing is the wrong approach and is harmful to sex workers,” [says] Jeremy Malcolm, director of the child protection organization Prostasia Foundation…“dealing with [child sexual abuse] through a harm reduction lens is far more effective and less likely to [be used to cloak]…intended [attacks] on marginalized communities”…

Legal Is as Legal Does (#1151) 

It looks like Victoria is about to become the world’s fourth jurisdiction to achieve decriminalization:

Victoria will join a growing number of states by decriminalising sex work…the…government announced it would begin a two-year legislative overhaul, starting with the removal of offences and criminal penalties for consensual sex work, with the aim of having it passed by Parliament by the end of the year…sex work will be regulated through existing government agencies and…laws will be updated to support a decriminalised system…Victoria will join New Zealand, the Northern Territory and NSW…

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