Should Prostitution Be Legalized? Essay

1593 words - 6 pages

Libertarianism is a philosophy that states we have free will and thus we are responsible for our actions. Therefore, political libertarianism argues, since we already have certain rights (such as the right to voice our opinions), the government's only role is to protect our rights. However, if we have a government that is imposing laws or reprimanding us for flexing our rights, it becomes a police state. Political libertarianism demands that the government play a smaller role. This type of society would then require from its citizens tolerance and responsibility. The citizens would have to accept others acting within their rights, as long as they are not physically hurting anyone, despite their own feelings and ideals. They would have to tolerate others' actions and beliefs. However, the present governments do not practice libertarianism. They impose regulations and punishments if their regulations are violated. Many controversial issues have arisen due to these violations of privacy. Among these controversial issues is the debate on whether prostitution should be legalized or "decriminalized." Due to its illegality and ambiguous definitions of prostitution, it is difficult to come up with a concrete number of persons who currently work or have worked as a prostitute. The National Task Force on Prostitution suggests that over one million people in the US have worked as prostitutes in the United States, or about 1% of American women. [5] Despite religious opposition or people's opinions on morality, legalizing prostitution would actually benefit society in many ways.Having prostitution be illegal is such a hassle. It is expensive and time consuming for courts, the police, and prostitutes themselves. It can also be very racist. Those arrested on such charge estimate over 100,000, 70% being females and 20% male. Unfairly, the majority arrested and sentenced to jail are ethnic minorities. Even though only 20% of the prostitutes work in streets, the majority of the arrests are taken place there. Actual enclosed areas such as massage parlors, escort services and saunas are very rarely shut down. Police officers who arrest these prostitutes usually succeed by using entrapment (disguising themselves as solicitors), invading these workers' privacy, and using discriminatory tactics (in 1987, California made it illegal to agree to engage in prostitution, allowing this form of entrapment to be legal). [6] Per each prostitute arrested, court and incarceration costs nearly $2,000.00 per arrest. Cities spend an average of 7.5 million dollars on prostitution control every year, ranging from 1 million dollars (Memphis) to 23 million dollars (New York). [5] Also, 46% of women working as street prostitutes are mothers, and the majority are single mothers. [2] Even though they are trying to earn money to support their families, since it is through illegal activities by working on the streets, they risk having their children taken away. Many have already lost...

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