Prostitution Policy: Revolutionizing Practice through a Gendered Perspective

By Lenore Kuo | Go to book overview

9
Prostitution Solution
Policy Recommendations

Although feminist positions generally favor decriminalization of prostitution, differences in justifying this legal preference lead to different programs and legal support policies. All feminists favor improving the situation of working prostitutes and former prostitutes, as well as ending trafficking in women and children for prostitution. But the specifics of how this should be done differ significantly according to differences in our larger analyses. Similarly, all feminists are or should be concerned with ending the debasing and dangerous construct of “the prostitute.” Logically, however, there are two ways to address this problem. One may argue for a policy that would lead to the elimination of this construct altogether or for one that would lead to its radical reconception.

If, as I have contended in Chapter 6, there would be, in a nonsexist state, forms of prostitution that would service both men and women (by both men and women), performing sexual acts whose meaning no longer would construct sex as a weapon or a determinant of power, then the most reasonable approach to current practice is to develop a prostitution policy that forces the concept of the whore-prostitute to be radically reconstructed.

These policy recommendations are intended to delineate what I believe is the best approach to prostitution at this time. They are intentionally quite specific, because sometimes the capacity to generate different longterm goals rests on the specifics. In constructing these recommendations, I have been concerned with developing a policy that works neither to abolish nor to promote prostitution. I have therefore selected particular recommendations for a prostitution policy that I believe will be most effective at meeting the following criteria: (1) Does this overall policy improve the situation of working prostitutes and former prostitutes? Does it offer the appropriate protections in an industry riddled with abuse, while respecting the rights and dignity of all prostitutes, including those

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