Tuesday, March 11, 2008


From here:
A second point against legalizing it, is that it is very hard to maintain society-wide moral opprobrium against anything that the state has legalized — especially when the state benefits from it. If you make prostitution legal, the state gets to tax it — so it has an interest in promulgating it. This is especially problematic in a welfare state. There were some interesting stories out of Germany a year or two ago, noting that, since brothels were legal, young women without skills whose welfare benefits had run out, were being encouraged by their social workers to take jobs as prostitutes. In fact, they were being coerced, with the threat of cutting off any state support. Refusing to be a whore was (is?) being treated no differently than refusing to be a janitor or a maid or any other unsavory but honest labor.

Update: Snopes points to some issues with the origins of this story. There's some speculation that if such a thing did happen that it might have been the work of a rouge/incompentent social worker. Since I'm sure all the social workers in the U.S. are much, much more compentent than they are in Germany I'm sure this wouldn't be a concern here!

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