"Nary you mind that the way things are currently, however many sex workers could get robbed and raped tonight and have it laughed off by the law, nary you mind that sex workers pulled over by the law will be black mailed into favors, nary you mind that sex workers of all races, genders, classes, political bent, religion, will still be seen by the majority of humanity as less than human themselves, nary you mind possession of condoms in the highly vaunted Swedish State is cause for arrest and possible immediate deportation."
While I do think that this silence around this topic this week is worth noting, even more noteworthy (to me) are the responses she got at AlterNet:
Why are you looking for women to support an organization that promotes an industry responsible for the rape and enslavement of women all over the world? Why is it feminist to promote the idea that a woman's body is a commodity for sale? Why is it feminist to teach this to our daughters?
Why should I spend my time supporting women or men who voluntarily support the patriarchal status quo? What ever ‘sex workers’ may claim - it is not a ‘job like any other’ fair enough do what you want to do but don’t expect me (as a father of two daughters) to give any of my energy to supporting men’s perceived right to female bodies. It’s just not going to happen.
Good idea...men get a celebration of a seasonal Pussy on a Plate.
Wow - can't forget about the menz - you know, the oppressed and forgotten lot...
See, these are classic examples of what NOT LISTENING looks like. Mention sex workers' rights, and people are hearing "promote prostitution" and "help men buy women's bodies." If there was ever any doubt about what anti-prostitution advocates think about sex workers, there sure isn't anymore - from these comments, they don't appear to think of them at all.
Which is why acknowledging sex workers' rights is important. When a woman is thought to be unrapeable, when she is unable to demand safe working conditions, when she is punished for exchanging sex for money but the people who abuse her are not - these are violations of human rights. Fighting for sex workers' safety, for decent working conditions, has nothing to do with how one might feel about prostitution. If one is really trying to help sex workers, then one ought to listen when they ask for help.
But somehow, it becomes about promoting prostitution if we do anything to help sex workers, right? Gah.