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Posted by Julia from ( on Friday, June 07, 2002 at 7:24PM :

First of all, last time I checked this forum was for debate and discussion. I can't help it if I disagreed with your logic about legalizing prostitution. Next time, I will ask you about your day or electrons, or whatever else that will make you feel better.

What is realistic is recognizing what problems are, and constructing solutions that fit the problems. I disagreed with how you posed the problem. I began with the assumption that most women who are in the position of education and wealth do not elect to sell sex for money. Their poorer counterparts who end up prostituting do it because of a lack of financial options. Why do you think that there is a high incidence of prostitution and poverty? Go to Manila, why do you think young boys and girls start whoring themselves? BEcause they like it? Why is it that women will take pigs blood in a plastic bag to a client, and pour it on the sheets and fake menstruation when it's time to get it on? is it because they want extra drama? or an easy way to exit out of a situation with at least some money?

You don't have to be condescending and mock studying public policies. I don't know of a process of osmosis where you can just absorb information and go in the real world. You have to study some stuff, debate it, analyze it, and walk away with some understanding about a field. That is what you are doing and that's what I'm doing.

And for your information, I don't just have this book-like information that is not tempered with what is going on in the real world. I work for a professor who interviewed over 170 low income women, and the interview is nothing special - you ask the women to tell their life story. And i've read over 50 of the life stories of old women, young women, blacks, latinas and whites who all shared the reality of being poor and raising kids alone. And guess what, alot of them had drug problems, or parents that didn't care about them, or abusive boyfriends, or sexual abuse from their families or those they trust; their poverty, coupled with that kind of upbringing, led them to do many things..including stripping or prostitution to make extra money. And this is not one or two women; these women and countless others (especially in poor countries) have no options and find that the best way to make cash is to prostitute.

Oh yeah, and I'm a woman too, and I know what it is like to feel like a piece of meat and feel like i'm nothing except for a chest and a butt. This is not mean women don't like hearing that they are beautiful; but when women are reminded that they are only chest and ass and they have no voice or way to oppose that thinking - then they feel like shit. when you can't do anything about it. and i know women hate being treated like a piece of meat. and i think it is completely stupid to say that we should legalize something just because it's been going on for so long - because legalizing the problem says nothing about how to improve a woman's existence so that she does not feel that prostitution is the only way she can survive.

My challenge to you is to not look at the symptoms of problems, but the causes of problems. I can't help it if you think that's being overly idealistic; i think it's being rational.

-- Julia
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