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Following The Issue

The Case Against Legalizing Prostitution

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It’s an open secret that prostitution has been in existence for millennia, has been practiced by peoples of all nations and cultures and may never be eradicated. It’s also obvious that the practice has had its supporters and opponents over the years.


Two days ago, for instance, the Issues Desk presented twelve reasons why prostitution should be legalized. In this article, however, the Issues Desk will also proffer twelve reasons why prostitution is wrong and shouldn’t be encouraged in any society.

The first argument against legalizing prostitution is that the human body isn’t a commodity to be commercialized in such a manner. Almost everyone knows that prostitution is considered a form of business, using the physical body of the prostitute as the product, which is inappropriate. It’s comparable to selling a human being as a slave. In fact, prostitution is considered a form of slavery. Hence, prostitution should be discouraged.

Second, prostitution negatively reflects on the dignity of womanhood. The word “prostitute” itself is a stigma on those bearing it. The practice somehow indicates that the woman involved in it is useless – values money more than her body. It presents a woman as a willing victim of men who wish to exploit her body. Simply put, it debases women. It makes a society treat them as sub-humans vis-à-vis their male counterparts. Society must help these women by empowering them not only to be decent citizens, but also to make decent living. Encouraging women to degrade themselves by practicing prostitution is not the way out.

Third, prostitution presents women as nothing but reusable sex machines for men. They either tread the streets or sit in brothels to be picked up and used by as many men as possible, and as many times as possible. This is what happens in the world of prostitution, whether in places where it’s legal or illegal. It’s mainly about using and abusing women in satisfying men’s ego-driven need. No society should be happy to see its women and young girls go though such an experience.

Fourth, most religions and cultures consider prostitution an immoral practice. It doesn’t matter whether it’s considered an age-old profession or not. In other words, its long existence does not negate its immoral nature. It’s in this respect that Moses says in Leviticus 21:9 that if the daughter of any priest practices prostitution, that person should be burned. This could also very well be why the Bible likens immoral Babylon the Great to a prostitute. It should be remembered, also, that the apostle Paul urges people to eschew sexual immorality. Obviously, legalizing prostitution is tantamount to legalizing sexual immorality in a society, which no decent society should do.

Fifth, legalization could increase the spread of many sexually transmitted diseases, including syphilis, gonorrhea and AIDS. This would be the case because more agents (sellers and buyers) would enter the market, and not all would practice safe sex, just as not all prostitutes and clients practice safe sex at the moment, including in places where the act is legal. This would be worse in developing countries where poverty, illiteracy and ignorance lead citizens into all sorts of unwholesome and precarious acts. By the way, it’s worth pointing out that the spread of these sexually transmitted diseases wouldn’t occur only among prostitutes and their clients, but also among the society as a whole. The point to bear in mind is that prostitution is harmful to society.

Sixth, prostitution should not be legalized in that it encourages other immoral or criminal acts. In many instances, for example, human trafficking, drug dealing and gun running occur in the prostitution business. There’re numerous stories indicating that vulnerable women and young girls are trafficked from poor regions to economically viable places in order to be used as prostitutes. In most instances, too, these females are ill-treated and held against their will. Legalization won’t eradicate this; it’ll expand it.

Seventh, the practice of prostitution usually brings dishonor to the family of the person practicing it. Generally speaking, the parents, children and siblings, as well as friends, of the prostitute feel a sense of shame and disgrace. At times, some relatives, out of anger or shame, refuse to be associated with such a person. In short, prostitution should not be legalized because it is a dishonorable practice.

Eighth, legalizing prostitution could produce scores of unmarried and rejected women in society. Not many men are willing and ready to take active and long-time prostitutes as wives or girlfriends. There are many reasons for this. To start with, some men feel that the women who have been involved in active prostitution lack true sexual feelings or emotions. Besides, others reason that taking a prostitute is like embracing disgrace since the word itself is a stigma.

Moreover, there are those who feel that an old-time prostitute is sexually insatiable in a normal relationship, meaning, she cannot be satisfied sexually. Also, many men believe that women who have been prostitutes for years are likely to be involved in infidelity; in other words, they cannot be trusted in any relationship – are more likely to cheat on their husbands or boyfriends.

Furthermore, there is the feeling and belief that choosing a prostitute is like knowingly purchasing an over-used machine. Still, a lot of people, both men and women, feel that women who are, or were, prostitutes could be ill or infected with some serious diseases, even if not known or visible now. Indeed, considering what many prostitutes engage in, and how they engage in it, criminalizing prostitution is the way to go.

Ninth, an all-out legalization of the act could open the floodgates to pre-marital and – in some cases, extra-marital – sexual practice. There are many gullible and unstable individuals, both married and unmarried, in each society. If such people noticed or heard about the possibility of making more money in this so-called profession, they could be driven or influenced to participate in the act.

Tenth, prostitution should not be legalized because it is a kind of training program for a woman to practice and get accustomed to unfaithfulness in relationships. It’s an open secret that prostitutes don’t have specific partners. They sleep with anyone who’s willing, ready and able to pay for their service. In a nutshell, they engage in sexual promiscuity. If such people, for one reason or another, decided to quit the prostitution after a protracted period and have their own partners, they could very well be inclined to continue the multiple-sexual-relationship experience in their new relationships. Briefly stated, prostitution is somehow a breeding ground for cheating in relationships.

Eleventh, especially for a Christian society, the Apostle Paul warns everyone to refrain from sexual sins, which include prostitution. He indicates in I Corinthians 7:2 that, in order to avoid sexual immoralities, every man should have his own wife and every woman her own husband. Remember that Paul does not say that each man should have his own prostitutes and every prostitute her own clients. He says that every man should have his own WIFE and every woman her own HUSBAND. People should be warned against prostitution, not encouraged into it.

Finally, the argument that prostitution should be legalized because it’s ineradicable is baseless and misleading. Such an unreasonable argument would also have us legalize killing, stealing, rape, domestic violence and other wrong or immoral practices since they, too, are ineradicable in any society. Should murder be legalized in every society all because no society has been able to eradicate murder? Of course, not!

What have we done in this article? Well, we have presented twelve reasons why prostitution should not be legalized. But, remember, also, that in our previous article, we equally presented twelve reasons why prostitution should be legalized. You have to decide where you stand on the issue.

Believe me, my people. We will never stop following the issues.

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