There’s a number of things people assume of prostitution or sex workers that they believe to be true, when the reality is much different.
Firstly, the prostitution industry is bigger than we think with China spending $73 billion, Spain spending $26.5 Billion, Japan spending $24 billion, and Germany – where prostitution is legal – spending $18 Billion in total. These are the prices:
China: $100 to $400 in Beijing
France: $207 per client in an apartment complex
Germany: Flat rate of $65 at a brothel
Hong Kong: $232 in a hostess bar
India: $1,000 for sex with a virgin, $1 for sex with adult
Japan: $118 at Tokyo brothel
Mexico: $50 per hour with street walker
Netherlands: $68 in Amsterdam
Turkey: $500 for VIP Service
United States: $50 to $100 for street prostitute
The above data proves that this industry is not only large but also contributes to the economy.
75% to 95% of prostitutes suffer from abuse as children whereas a prostitute is beaten roughly twelve to thirteen times a year. Many people argue that prostitutes set themselves up for violence, and are to be considered fair game for rape, abuse, and murder. Nobody has ever asked to be abused. Not I, not you and most certainly not people who are already selling their bodies to make a living, often because circumstances have forced them into the sex trafficking.
Were sex trafficking legalized in every country, sex workers would not have to fear being arrested by the police for being sex workers rather than filing complaints about abusive pimps and johns.
According to the abolitionist Swedish law,
Women in prostitution are decriminalized but their predators – johns, pimps, traffickers – are arrested.
Another myth would be the absence of pimps. Health service providers, shelter staff, survivors of prostitution, and law enforcement sources estimate that 75%-85% of all prostitution is pimp-dominated. These pimps more often than not overwork their employees; abuse them physically, sexually, and emotionally. Many blackmail and coax minors into prostitution.
In Afghanistan where men have almost non-existent contact with women, “Bachabazi” exists. This is the process of dressing up young homeless/orphan boys as girls and selling them to other men. These boys serve until they don’t look as young anymore and are then helped by their employers to continue living a free life with jobs, a house and even get them married.
People assume that prostitution is easy, or the easy way out: it isn’t. It does not make as much money as we assume otherwise there would be no homeless or impoverished sex workers. Once again, most of the prostitutes have either been forced by circumstances into their line of work or do not have the skills to get a job that pays. Many have police records that make it impossible to gain employment in any respectable place and work in dangerous conditions. Others face the risk of arrest when they walk into hospitals or private clinic for health issues or treatment of STDs, which they usually cannot pay for.
Sex workers are not limited to just women. Out of all the sex workers, 20% are men, 70% women and 10% Trans people. There are child prostitutes which grow up with abuse or run away from home because their parents have left them no choice.
Prostitution is one of the largest industries and we need to either provide employment and teach impoverished people so they can find jobs and make a respectable living, or we can decriminalize prostitution.