The National Post editorial board is hailing the decision as “some sanity in our prostitution laws”:
The Ontario Superior Court struck a blow for sane legislation on Tuesday when it struck down laws against communicating for the purposes of prostitution, living off its avails and running a “common bawdy house” — i.e., a brothel. Like it or not, the exchange of money for sexual services between consenting adults is legal in Canada.
… but dig a little deeper at the same site and you’ll see that, as predictably as darkness falls each evening, the Punishment Freaks have come out to play:
Many libertarians will applaud the legalization of prostitution, which is in theory a victimless crime. The reality is that high-end prostitutes already know how to look after themselves, while low-end prostitutes are usually just trying to get from one drug fix to another. They will have little interest in pre-screening their johns, because they are desperate women. Does anyone really believe that they are going to spend money on an “office,” advertise their services, keep accounts, submit to regular health testing and pay taxes on their income? Dream on. Does anyone really believe that pimps will then become vacuum-cleaner salesmen?
Eww, there’s that insidious word again: “believe”. That word has facilitated the spread of more misinformation and fly-specked bullshit than any other. “I believe (that up is down, black is white, Barbara Kay has anything intelligent to say about the sex trade…etc.)”
It doesn’t matter what anyone “believes” — only the facts matter, and the fact is, if you support the ongoing criminalization of the sex trade, you are supporting organized crime. If you force women out to the fringes of society where they can fade into the shadows without anyone even noticing they’re gone, you are enabling the Robert Picktons of the world. If you can live with organized crime and serial killers in the name of expressing your purse-lipped, lemon-sucking disapproval of certain business transactions between consenting adults, then knock yourself out. But spare us the sanctimonious scolding, as if there’s something respectable about your point of view.
Then consider how many “respectable” married women routinely “cut off” and otherwise ration sex in the process of negotiating for new Maytags or eternity rings, or just as punishment for husbandly transgressions.
The sex trade isn’t restricted to sleazy street corners on the seedy side of town, it’s alive and thriving in just about every sunlit suburban matrimonial bed on the planet. Those who sell their commodities on the open market are just more upfront about it.