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Author Topic: On Prostitution: Potential Issues in an AnCap Society  (Read 6062 times)
AgoristTeen1994
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« on: March 19, 2014, 04:33:02 PM »

http://www.smh.com.au/world/sex-and-the-cities-20140310-34i3a.html

This is regarding Germany which has one of the highest numbers of prostitutes per capita, in the world. Now while I dislike prostitution, I'm not particularly fond of the idea of banning it. However there are potential issues. One of them being, dealing with sex trafficking, and those women who are forced into the industry and the people forcing them into it. While it's easy to say "well they should just leave" that easier said than done...for a variety of reasons. So in a region where prostitution is decriminalized and unregulated, a theoretical Ancapistan for example, there are questions regarding how find out if a prostitute is being coerced into prostitution, how to help them get out of it, if they are, and how to stop the spread of sex trafficking into Anacapistan. As fond as I am of organizations like the A21 campaign (I have a friend that is super-passionate about that sort of thing..she pretty much went crazy when she had shot at getting an internship or something with A21) they have one issue that is in common. As much as they want people to get up off their butts and help personally..they also are fond of getting gov't involved, particularly in the form of criminalizing prostitution, period. So any suggestions on a stateless society could deal with the issue of coerced prostitution? I know there is no way of knowing for certain, until a libertarian anarchist society forms...but speculating could be interesting.
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Syock
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« Reply #1 on: March 19, 2014, 05:39:50 PM »

Prostitution and sex trafficking have similarities and ties with illegal drugs.  Just as it is essentially impossible to stop people from using drugs, it is essentially impossible to stop the worlds oldest profession.  Making these things illegal just forces them to be underground no matter what.  There is no room in that kind of setup for a safe version for those that would be there willingly.  It is legal/tolerated in parts of the USA. 

If you are looking at an ancap society, while the prostitution wouldn't be illegal, the trafficking may well be.  Any violence or theft against the victims certainly would be illegal.  In most societies, those that are essentially slaves are in violation of nearly as many laws as those that enslave them.  They have little incentive to speak up. 

The reality is that for some reason, many people are afraid to ask for help when they need it.  Domestic violence/rape rarely are reported. 

In the article that was referenced, there was a great deal of emotional appeal of people not liking prostitution.  Ok, but there was nothing illegal about that or the many women that traveled there legally from counties that have open borders with each other for work.  They also failed to be realistic about how people will structure a business. 

Then at the very end was a story from a lone individual that likely knowingly broke the law, and ended up in a horrible situation.  That story deserves severe punishment for those that committed the crimes against her and others.  However, she likely was afraid of the consequences against her for the crime she committed (you need special permission to work in foreign countries in most cases), and therefore didn't report the crimes to those that could help her. 

By having these restrictions in place that made her part illegal, there was cause for her to allow the crimes against her to continue.  Some people may have allowed it, or domestic violence, to continue out of shame or fear, or something else in an ancap society.  There isn't a good solution for those that won't ask for help.  Some people commit violent crimes.  People like that will always exist.  The best we can do is help those that we can by taking away barriers that force them to remain in bad situations due to the real criminals. 
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Seth King
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« Reply #2 on: March 19, 2014, 06:36:14 PM »

If you can figure out how to get violence out of prostitution, legal or otherwise, let us know so we can apply it to all other professions as well. kthnx.
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Victor
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« Reply #3 on: March 28, 2014, 09:04:58 PM »

Some ideas:

1) Create escape routes. Part of this would be cultural in nature, I recall a snippet from one of Robert Heinlein's books, I think it was The Cat That Walks Through Walls, in which a rapist was evicted into the vacuum of space, and then folks later discovered that the victim had been a prostitute and he'd simply failed to pay her. To the loonies however, the prostitute was "just as sacred in her person" as anyone else, so they would have killed him anyway.

So, in other words, fight "slut-shaming" and give prostitutes a way to seek help without being publicly shamed or having their lives destroyed, if that makes sense.

Also, obviously, anything one can do to spread a moral philosophy which involves not enslaving people into prostitution may help, if one can find ways to do it.

2) The RoseCityCopwatch paper on alternatives to policing talks briefly about the "Portland Bad Date Line", in which sex-workers created a phone tree where they'd inform each other of potentially violent clients. So sex-workers could help protect themselves by networking with each other to spread information about abusive customers and other dangerous individuals. Maybe a decentralized blacklist of a sort could be used, if you see this person don't interact with them, call your local mutual security network or voluntary defense agency, stuff like that. Today the internet could be used to help facilitate this sort of thing, too.

3) In a society where it was easier for people to move upward economically, less people would need to rely on prostitution, so less people would be exposed to the risks involved, and it would be easier to keep the smaller number of people in the profession safe. So create economic opportunities for people in general, this should help.

4) Perhaps sex-workers could make good use of less hierarchical business models, like mutualist style cooperatives? I personally have only just started researching the coop movement, but it seems like that kind of organizational structure might help particularly well in this profession, since authority figures would have so much more potential to abuse any power they might have than they might in other professions. At least it seems like they would.

5) Create sanctuaries and safe-spaces for victims to retreat to and hide if necesary, like churches or Blue Light Houses or places created and maintained for the express purpose of harboring survivors of sexual coercion. If people have places to retreat to where they'll feel like they're no longer in physical danger, as well as where they won't be harassed if they're prostitutes, then they may be more willing to try to escape a harmful situation and seek out help.

6) Vigilantes (and government officials I'm sure) already trick people who search for victims online into falling into a trap. In a stateless society, if folks suspected that a problem with sex trafficking existed, then people could form groups to find and investigate businesses that offered sex-services. In other words, one could go undercover, perhaps as a client, perhaps as a business partner offering to help with sex-trafficking or security issues, whatever it took to determine whether coercion was being used to keep sex-workers where they were.

As for how such groups would determine whether certain businesses were coercing people into working for them or not, I don't honestly know. Obviously the workers would be warned to keep their mouths shut, and undercover investigators could be risking having themselves dissappeared if discovered. I'd have to do more research on it. But it seems like it may somehow be possible to actively search out sex-traffickers, and once they were found they could be exposed publicly or perhaps charged in agorist courts of some sort, whatever it took to shut them down and free the sex-workers involved.

It's an interesting problem. I think I've seen work done on methods to protect sex-workers from abuse or entrapment, but I'd have to do some searching to find it again. I'd expect there to be a lot of ideas from anarcha-feminists out there on this sort of thing, if nothing else.
« Last Edit: March 28, 2014, 09:12:52 PM by Victor » Logged

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Syock
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« Reply #4 on: March 28, 2014, 10:18:39 PM »

Also, obviously, anything one can do to spread a moral philosophy which involves not enslaving people into prostitution may help, if one can find ways to do it.

I suspect those involved in such an activity don't have much care of morals. 
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Victor
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« Reply #5 on: March 28, 2014, 10:37:30 PM »

Also, obviously, anything one can do to spread a moral philosophy which involves not enslaving people into prostitution may help, if one can find ways to do it.

I suspect those involved in such an activity don't have much care of morals. 


True, but spreading such a philosophy could prevent people from becoming involved to begin with or heading in that direction, and those involved still have to interact with others in order to make a profit. The more folks who are wary of illicit activity, the less customers illicit businesses may have. And one never knows, people change right?
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