I am probably going to resign from the Left Unity Party, launched in 2013 by Ken Loach and others as a leftwing alternative to Labor. The Party is clearly not going anywhere, and the Green Party has surged ahead with over 1 million votes in the last General Election (but only one MP due to our unfair electoral system). I may well join the Greens, or remain outside all political parties.
I have had two run-ins with LU members over the question of prostitution. One on Facebook, and the other this week by email. My local Party, Wandsworth, has decided to discuss prostitution at a meeting on Thursday, and it seems militant feminists are completely in control and will present a paper calling for the oldest profession to be banned. Apart from being totally impractical and likely to just push it further underground, increasing trafficking of women and minors, it impinges on the rights of consenting adults to earn a living by providing a useful service, and on the rights of their clients to purchase these services.
Accusations were thrown about saying contributions to the debate by email were ‘inappropriate’ and ‘intimidating’. The only intimidation is by the militant feminists who insist all prostitution constitutes rape and degradation of women, even apparently when talking about male escorts catering mainly for gay and bisexual men. In fact they don’t want to talk about male sex workers at all, insisting it is just a matter of men degrading women.
I happen to believe sex workers of both genders provide a valuable social service, preventing many rapes and child molestations. They are often willing to act out fantasy role play, and indeed many of these don’t even involve sex. Full penetrative sex is not necessarily part of all encounters with sex workers. Of course my idea that sex workers should be available on the NHS to give hand jobs to elderly men to prevent prostate cancer, and save the NHS money in the long run, was no doubt deemed one of the ‘inappropriate’ and ‘intimidating’ remarks, but I make no apologies for being decades ahead of current thinking.
My life-partner and most of his friends were sex workers in the past, and he held the same views as I do about the valuable social service they provide. Similarly for the pornographic industry, and Peter Tatchell has said that it can help stimulate masturbation in older men and so help to prevent prostate cancer. Militant feminists no doubt are not preoccupied with male health issues such as this.
State run brothels with proper controls and regular health checks are, in my view, the answer, to provide safe spaces for sex workers and their clients, and to insure no minors or trafficked women/men/children are involved. If State run brothels were set up, all other forms of prostitution could be if not eliminated at least more regulated, and unauthorized brothels closed down. Whether independent consenting adults could operate on their own is a moot point, I see no objection but they might need to agree to regular inspections to insure they were within the law and to conduct health checks.
It is plain stupid to try to outlaw the oldest profession. Surely the experience of Prohibition in the USA taught us that if you ban something people want it goes underground and in control of criminal organizations like the Mafia.
I await a reply from Left Unity head office before deciding whether to cancel my membership, but if I don’t hear from them I will resign anyway. Only if they ask me to stay a member will I possible reconsider.