Accusations against the global sex industry

Anonyme, Sunday, April 17, 2011 - 18:19

Lee Lakeman

I want to give my support to the accusations against the global sex industry. Indeed I observe from my place in the work against sexist violence that the sex industry is guilty of overwhelming overpowering that is dominating our government, our community and our selves. To see it, we must observe NOT JUST INDIVIDUAL ACTS of sexual exploitation and INDIVIDUAL JOHNS BUT ALSO A GLOBAL SEX INDUSTRY. Observe the sheer numbers of men : Some say one in eight are purchasing sex. Observe that the men of all nations and all classes buy sex.

We know that the men of the north and the west are buying sex all over the world from women of all classes and races because they have the wealth and power to do so unchecked.

There is a hierarchy of exploitation based mostly on sex, class and race and therefore a hierarchy of responsibility based on the same hierarchy. The amount of profit being exploited in the sex industry is horrifying if as yet unfathomable ; the harm in spite of what we know and hear here is still untold.

The industry is a system not just a collection of individuals or individual events of exploitation but a set of destructive human relations and anti-social processes.

I say that prostitution/trafficking is best thought of as Violence Against Women. That is : a control mechanism exercising social economic civil and political control over all women.

As in other forms of Violence Against Women, prostitution/trafficking is a force created by the individual physical acts of each man against each woman.

But the aggregation or sum of the individual parts with the collusion of others is a much greater thing, a complex set of human relations, a much stronger structure a more formidable force of repression.

Violence against women is a system

We know from more than forty years of observing and fighting to end wife assault and rape that each act of sexist violence combines to create a force that terrorizes not only that particular battered, raped or prostituted woman in the present and into her future, but it also makes of her subjugation, an example with which to terrorize even those women who were not attacked, were not battered or raped this time, not this time brought to our knees.

Each successful act of violence against a woman or girl does so. Each patriarchal retelling of that story of subjugation becomes a cautionary tale a compelling warning, a warning that should we transgress, we might be next to be battered or raped or to have our children seduced to have our selves or our daughters sold.

We observe too that women who are trapped by extremes of age, by marriage, by disability or illness, by poverty and racism are more vulnerable to men who would abuse. They have less escape routes, fewer protectors, fewer safe guards, few routes to justice. So these women are chosen for that sexist abuse.

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