Legalize it or not?
14 May, 2015
Legalize it or not?
The talk about the oldest profession of the world is just as aged as the trade itself. The subject is always topical here in Georgia too. Almost every television and radio talk show in the country has dwelt upon the theme at various times and circumstance, and there is hardly a journalist in the field who has not tried his or her pen on it. Harlotry as business and vocation has a lengthy and extraordinary history, extending to all times and
cultures, both primordial and contemporary. Whoredom has always attracted extensive human attention and keen interest, no matter how degrading the occupation was considered to be, and still is. Most of us would say that it is a flagrant debasement of man, but people want to talk about prostitution anyway and discuss it on any opportune occasion. And the most serious aspect of those discussion is the issue of its official validation. The eternal and internationally sounding question – should we legalize it or not – is never fading away, remaining as one of the most controversial concerns of the mankind. Georgia, as part of the world, cannot but be part of this perpetual controversy. Sporadic articles on the subject are appearing in various periodicals, written by physicians, psychologists, therapists, shrinks, venereologists, public figures from different walks of life, writers and members of the press of diverse generations. And this is totally understandable because prostitution is a career and the only source of subsistence for millions around the globe, including Georgia. I can hardly name a big town where the oldest profession workers, both female and male, are not openly soliciting sex for winning daily bread. This all said, I would love to embark on the painful issue of legalizing commercial sex in this country. As I said, I hear talk and I read the written word on the topic, but I have never heard or seen anybody making a multisided rational conclusion that might help this society to get better versed in this complicated issue. Banning this line of work will not work. It has never worked anywhere because it is amazingly resilient – you ban it, it bounces back; you outlaw it, it sticks again; you prohibit it, it flourishes even more. The other day, I read somewhere in the local press somebody asking a rhetorical question – how realistic it is in Georgia to legalize the depraving trade. No matter how difficult it is to answer this question unequivocally, I still want to venture the answer. We often hear that times have changed and consequently, our perception of life and the problems accompanying it has also changed. This being true, the novel perception of phenomena, determining the quality of human existence, is often hampered and even crippled by traditions and spiritual orientation that have persisted in the life of any nation throughout centuries. Georgia is a country of very firm ancient traditions, where new perceptions and modern attitudes might easily take roots, but at the same time, traditionalism of thought and behavior remain very firmly in place here. In the world of informational boom, technically supported by Internet, our people know very well how things are working in the West and most of us are tending to accept the way of Western life. For example, we hear that many European countries have successfully legalized prostitution and gay marriages, which we can take easy in principle if we try hard to rationalize our intellectual capability, but our culture as a whole, cannot help remaining recalcitrant towards admitting man having sex with man, woman enjoying it with woman, and our daughters, sisters, moms and aunts earning living with the help of selling their bodies. Let us call this mind-can-understand-but-heart-will-reject situation. They say that some of the countries would justify the legalization of prostitution with the opportunity of replenishing their state budget with revenues from the legitimized business of sex workers. Fine, but what do we say to gay marriages? In what way could they help their governments financially? Maybe it is meant that homosexual matrimony can affect the labor productivity of happily married and thus re-energized couples? So the logic is that it is the contemporary western culture that allows the deal. In the East, things are different. Georgia is vacillating between the two, and it is not clear which way it tends to preponderate more. And there is no super powerful universal judge out there who could categorically and unambiguously tell us which is wrong and which is right – legalize it or not? On the other hand, facts remain facts: sex workers are humans like all of us and they need love and care just as any human does. Sex industry is an everlasting part of our life which is not a simple paradigm of entertainment but a human activity with a huge financial potential. It is not dying because people want to have it around although it is full of bad things too – both moral and physical. I have a friend who is a doctor with a very clear and open mind about the issue of legalizing commercial sex activity. He is a doctor and he thinks, against all possible odds, that it is better to have prostitution under the state control because it will do us more harm as it is now – prohibited and heedlessly left. Let us think about this somewhat better!
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