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Ontario government effectively legalizes brothels, a sane and sensible decision

30 Mar

In a recent court decision, the Ontario government has effectively paved the way for the legalization of brothels.

Unfortunate as this may seem on one level, from the moral perspective of us as Christians, I nevertheless think it’s the right thing to do.  I generally agree with this opinion piece by Jonathan Kay on the matter.

I have revealed my libertarian streak previously, and I do so here again.

Prostitution is already legal in Canada, though the law has been riddled with inconsistencies: it has remained illegal to solicit for prostitution, and effectively illegal for johns to attempt to purchase it, which is logically absurd.

Yes, it is immoral, and spiritually ruinous to those who participate, both sellers and buyers.  But it is the world’s oldest profession; one finds mention of it in the Bible from quite early on, in Genesis.  And while it is condemned in Scripture, it doesn’t appear anywhere that the authorities in Old Testament Israel undertook moral and legal crusades against it to try to end it, and it appears God’s harshest criticisms against prostitution are levelled against the specific practice of temple prostitution, mentioned in the Law rather than in the Wisdom literature like Proverbs.  And no wonder that offends God so much more, since that combines prostitution with worship of pagan idols; an abomination to the Lord, indeed.  By contrast, the practice of regular, ordinary, commercial prostitution, while condemned, doesn’t come in for the same level of condemnation, and one can conclude that its existence, while unfortunate and tragic, is not so offensive to God, or the authorities in Old Testament, that it needed to be wiped out.

Brothels of course already exist, posing as ‘massage parlours’, but these are still more or less illegal, which doesn’t make sense itself, since prostitution itself is legal.  Legalizing brothels while keeping pimping and street prostitution illegal, will make street prostitution less attractive an option, which will safeguard those unfortunate women who do make such a poor ‘career’ choice from abusive pimps, and murderous johns, thus hopefully eliminating the kind of killing sprees that Jack the Ripper in 19th-century London, England, and Robert Pickton in Vancouver, Canada in our century, were able to carry out.  And it will also have the benefit – if authorities also crack down harder now on street prostitution – of removing street prostitutes from city streets and residential areas, improving the quality of life for people living and working in such places.  Governments will be able to restrict, through zoning laws, the places where brothels can be set up, to commercial areas, which is a good thing.  And they will be able to set up, through licencing, regular medical check-ups / treatment for prostitutes, like they do in the Netherlands and Germany, which is also a good thing.

Naturally, some oppose the court’s ruling, including some ex-street-prostitutes:

Several former prostitutes angered by the decision, said the court’s ruling will prevent social workers and police from intervening to rescue underage prostitutes and sends the wrong message to children that prostitution is an acceptable career, several said.

“I worked the street for 15 years and this won’t keep anyone safe,” said Katrina MacLeod, who now works with Walk With Me, a group working to help women out of the sex trade. “It’s more than troubling, it’s disgusting.”

Bridget Perrier, tearful and angry, held up a metal coat hanger twisted into a baton, saying it is a tool known as a “pimp stick” — heated up under a flame and then used to whip and beat prostitutes.

“This is what my pimp used on me, every day. I was beaten with one of these. It’s not just these, it’s curling irons, Tasers, razor blades. I cannot give birth because my inner organs being used and abused from a young age. I entered the sex trade at 12 years of age and everyone needs to be shown a way out,” said Ms. Perrier, who now works for Sex Trade 101, another group helping women leave prostitution.

She called on anti-prostitution laws to be strengthened to stop men preying on vulnerable women, not loosened.

Tragic as Ms. Perrier’s tale is, her argument is absurd, because the very existence of brothels provides an alternative, to street prostitution and street pimps forcing their girlfriends, etc., into such a lifestyle; women who foolishly, immorally, wish to become whores, will be able to do so in a safer environment altogether.  Her arguments are as ridiculous as those of people opposed to drug legalization who claim that crime will increase, whereas it’s the very fact of drugs being illegal that causes the crime element to be involved in the drug trade, in the first place.  And Ms. MacLeod makes the same mistake; again, the existence of a legal alternative to street prostitution, should make street prostitution a less attractive option, for those so inclined to such ‘work’.

As I said above, unfortunate as this may seem on one level, that our society seems to be legally endorsing a practice that Christians find immoral and repugnant (rightly so, too, because of what Scripture teaches about it), just because something is immoral, it does not automatically follow that it should be illegal (else we’d have laws against adultery, white lies, gossip, etc.).  And sometimes, difficult choices are the right ones to make.  I believe the Ontario Court of Appeal has made such a right choice, in its ruling.

Post-Script: I noticed the article pointed out that “The thorny issue transcended traditional ideological divides, with conservative religious groups finding strange allies in feminist activists in their support of retaining the prostitution restrictions.” – interesting indeed, that.  That should give such conservative religious groups pause, that they find themselves having feminazis who hate men, as their bedfellows on this matter.

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39 Comments

Posted by on March 30, 2012 in Canada, law

 

39 responses to “Ontario government effectively legalizes brothels, a sane and sensible decision

  1. katmandutu

    March 30, 2012 at 9:30 am

    “Yes, it is immoral, and spiritually ruinous to those who participate, both sellers and buyers.”

    These people, unless they repent are going to hell.

    ” But it is the world’s oldest profession; one finds mention of it in the Bible from quite early on, in Genesis. And while it is condemned in Scripture, it doesn’t appear anywhere that the authorities in Old Testament Israel undertook moral and legal crusades against it to try to end it, ”

    Come on Will, it’s fornication.. Pure and simple. We have had murder, rape and pillage since time immemorial too. Does not make them right!

    I cannot for the life of me understand how anyone can sanction brothels.

    Would a man be happy if his mother, his sister or his wife was a prostitute?

    Of course not..!!.

    Sorry Will, just can’t agree with this.

    God’s laws before man’s.

    Men do not want to marry sluts. But many sluts eventually want to marry men.

    Brothels are a means to an end for some women.. Many a woman has become a working girl to put herself through college… We should encourage and rubber stamp this?

    You can’t have it both ways. It’s hypocrisy.

     
  2. Will S.

    March 30, 2012 at 9:50 am

    Hi Kathy.

    Yes, prostitution specifically and fornication in general, are immoral, and soul-destroying.

    So, too, can be other things that are legal, like the over-consumption of alcohol; it can ruin lives, and send its victims to hell, too (Scripture teaches that no drunkard has an inheritance in the Kingdom of God).

    But we don’t ban booze just because some people abuse it.

    You’re right that murder and rape are immoral – and it is true, that we have laws against such things. But those are crimes of violence, which is why they are illegal. Theft is a crime, too, because it is a crime of violence often, and always a violation of one’s right to one’s possessions.

    But we don’t ban everything that is immoral; adultery, for instance, while legal grounds for divorce, is not against the law. Nor, more broadly, is fornication itself. Since time immemorial, authorities have not sought to criminalize all activities that are immoral; only ones that, through violence, threaten the peace and order of the society as a whole. Which is why murder is illegal, and fornication is not.

    The point isn’t to morally sanction the activity, by legalizing it; the point is to try to cut down on the associated problems with it – violence and murder and abuse – particularly in its street form.

    As with the question of drug legalization, the point is to look critically at the effects of the legal status quo, and to seek a remedy to what results from the laws being as they are.

    I certainly wouldn’t want to marry a slut, or a whore, or want my mother or if I had a sister or a daughter, for them to do so. But, again, re: sluts, no laws against slutting exist; women and men are free, legally, to slut around. What’s the difference, then, from someone slutting around for free, and those who slut around as a money-making scheme? Scripture condemns fornication, i.e. slutting around, yet it has not been made illegal. Why should slutting-for-money be illegal?

    The law of God and the law of man are two different things; the State may choose to permit that which God forbids – remember, not all in society are Christians. And so why should non-Christians be compelled to follow our standards in all things? The State, in its wisdom, down through the ages, has not felt it necessary to try to enforce all of God’s laws, only legally enforcing the moral prohibitions against the most egregious of sins against other people – such as murder, rape, theft. But others, including the violation of the Commandment “Thou shalt not commit adultery”, have remained legal in most societies, despite violating God’s law.

     
  3. katmandutu

    March 30, 2012 at 10:20 am

    Thanks for the clarification Will… You are the voice of logic and reason. 😀

     
  4. 7man

    March 30, 2012 at 10:44 am

    @ Will S.

    Many of your comments are more insightful that your posts. The leadership that you exhibited by gently correcting and explaining, is a trait that is attractive to women. It is being dominant but not domineering and I advocate that men continue to cultivate and develop this skill.

     
  5. Will S.

    March 30, 2012 at 10:54 am

    @ Kathy: You’re welcome – and thanks! 🙂

    @ 7man: Thanks! I try. 🙂

     
  6. katmandutu

    March 30, 2012 at 11:08 am

    Indeed. You could take a leaf out of Will’s book 7 man. 😉

    He never rubs people up the wrong way.

    He is just a nice guy. Intelligent, interesting, strong and treats others, men and women alike, with respect . And he is a gentleman.. A very endearing quality.

    And above all he is a good Christian man who is steadfast and consistent in his beliefs.

    This is why I hold him in high esteem.

    That and his bloody good sense of humour. 😀

     
  7. Svar

    March 30, 2012 at 11:11 am

    I don’t see the point considering how most women nowadays give it away for free; thanks to feminism and modernity we can all Enjoy the Decline for no cost. Oh well, as P.T. Barnum would say, there’s a sucker born every minute.

    In earlier days, adultery was illegal. It was even allowed to be punished by justiafible homicide, in Texas as recently as 1974 and in Italy as recently as 1981. Fornication and “seduction” was also illegal and carried a price.

    Either way, I don’t care if protitution is legalized. Won’t effect me either way.

     
  8. Will S.

    March 30, 2012 at 11:11 am

    You’re too kind, Kathy. 🙂

     
  9. Will S.

    March 30, 2012 at 11:15 am

    @ Svar: Interesting that adultery itself was illegal in such jurisdictions; however, I think in most English-speaking countries, in most places, it generally hasn’t been; nor fornication.

    However, if governments decided they wanted to try to enforce all morality through legislation, it would at least be consistent. I look forward to seeing someone try to ban gossip, which Scripture condemns; that would be interesting…

    Won’t affect me either personally, except that certain streets in my town that have been blighted with streetwalkers, might be less so, which is all to the good for quality of life for everyone, IMO.

     
  10. Will S.

    March 30, 2012 at 11:19 am

    As for young women today giving it away for free, that’s only to alphas; after all, even sluts have their standards…

    Some, of course, in the manosphere, advocate legal prostitution for that very reason, to undercut the SMV of women as a whole, by preserving an outlet for men. As Christians, we can’t join them in advocating an immoral activity for its own sake. But we can question whether it makes sense, rationally, to have the law as it is, in terms of the impact of the status quo versus the impact of changing it. It is on those grounds I support the Ontario Court of Appeal ruling in this matter.

     
  11. 7man

    March 30, 2012 at 11:28 am

    @Kathy

    “You could take a leaf out of Will’s book 7man.
    He never rubs people up the wrong way.
    He is just a nice guy.”

    That you for implying that I am not a “nice guy.” Overcoming that trait in my former self has enabled me to find a great woman.

     
  12. Will S.

    March 30, 2012 at 11:45 am

    @ 7man: Ha! A good point; no guy wants to be too much of a “nice guy”, indeed. 😉

    @ Kathy, 7man: And, why don’t we leave it at that? Peace, brother and sister.

     
  13. katmandutu

    March 30, 2012 at 11:48 am

    “You’re too kind, Kathy”

    My pleasure Will. (curtsies)

     
  14. Svar

    March 30, 2012 at 11:49 am

    Yeah, I don’t want to have to break up yet another cat-fight between you two. Calm down.

     
  15. Sunshine

    March 30, 2012 at 8:55 pm

    No, no, no, Will, you’re wrong and you’re not right! Do you know where one of the major destinations for sex slaves is? Amsterdam, where brothels have been legal for a long time. Legalizing brothels and prostitution does NOT reduce crime associated with the sex trade, nor does it some how empower women to get away from abusive pimps. Have you been to Amsterdam? It is a city that can only be described as soulless. The right-out-in-the-open sex displays are NOT limited to the red light district. In any event, I have yet to see convincing data to suggest that legalizing prostitution and brothels will reduce crime, so society has a vested interest in maintaining laws against this. OK, I’m sorry to disagree; I love your blog and usually agree with you. 🙂

     
  16. Sunshine

    March 30, 2012 at 9:03 pm

    I forgot to back up my statement about the Netherlands being a major destination for sex slaves from other countries. Here are several sources; the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime lists the Netherlands as one of the major destinations for sex slaves.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/6497799.stm
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prostitution_in_Europe#Prostitution_in_the_Netherlands

     
  17. Mark Slater

    March 30, 2012 at 11:09 pm

    From what I gathered in the Kay article, Canada’s prostitution laws seem disingenuous; as though they are trying to be modern and hip, and at the same time preserve Anglo-Purintan standards of times of yore. Nevada-style prostitution statutes, which I find repugnant, would be more sensible.

    “Brothels should be legal in this country, which is the first step in making them safe.” — from the article… Wasn’t that the rationale for legalizing abortions in the U.S?

    From the post: “it doesn’t appear anywhere that the authorities in Old Testament Israel undertook moral and legal crusades against it to try to end it, and it appears God’s harshest criticisms against prostitution are levelled against the specific practice of temple prostitution, mentioned in the Law rather than in the Wisdom literature like Proverbs.”

    The Wisdom literature is, of course, chock full of warnings against harlotry and whoredom and those who indulge in same. Should these things be lawful in a modern republic?

    Two things come to mind:

    1. We no longer live in a modern republic. Our legal system is broken. I agree with Will S. in the following sense, that we certainly do not want a federal “war on drugs” style crackdown on prostitution. If we can remember back historically to what a true republic looked like, we would remember that there was a time when enforcing the law was a local and municipal responsibility, one which reflected the morals and values of the local populace. It is in this manner that I would like to see prostitution suppressed.

    2. Like sodomy and loan-sharking, prostitution is an illegitimate activity. To attempt to govern and regulate it thus gives it an air of respectability that it does not deserve. I’m actually surprised at the shamelessness of certain females as to freely admit to this activity. Even Tamar covered herself when she played the harlot and approached her father-in-law, Judah (Genesis 38:15).

     
  18. Svar

    March 30, 2012 at 11:35 pm

    Sunshine, you don’t have to be sorry for disagreeing. Neither do Kathy or Mark Slater. I will say this-I am not at all happy with this new law anymore than I am with the widespread proliferation of porn. But it is what it is. Will does bring up some decent points.

    I have heard that the attitude of decent Dutch people towards Amsterdam is basically, “let the degenerates have their own place and keep them away from us”. Perhaps that’s the best we can make out of a situation like this.

    However, the question of sexual slavery that you bring up is troubling.

     
  19. Will S.

    March 31, 2012 at 8:12 am

    @ Sunshine: Hey, no worries; people can disagree, no need to apologize. 🙂

    Sex slavery is a disturbing thing, and like pimping, needs to be illegal. As far as I can see, though, legalizing legitimate brothels, turning them into companies that have to follow regulations and guidelines, be open to inspection, etc., ought to decrease incidences of such things; I suspect the problem in the Netherlands is more a problem of allowing wide-open immigration of people from Far East countries where that sort of thing is common (it’s happened in Canada, too, mostly with immigrants from China and the Phillipines), than it is due to the laws themselves. Europe needs to tighten up its immigration…

    I agree with you, about not having picture windows with whores displaying their wares, the way the Amsterdam whores do. Not a good thing; no reason why that can’t be done indoors.

    @ Mark Slater: “The Wisdom literature is, of course, chock full of warnings against harlotry and whoredom and those who indulge in same.”

    Oh, indeed; but it’s in the Law that temple prostitution comes in for special condemnation, above that of the general condemnation of prostitution in general, in the Wisdom literature; that’s all I was saying.

    “1. We no longer live in a modern republic. Our legal system is broken. I agree with Will S. in the following sense, that we certainly do not want a federal “war on drugs” style crackdown on prostitution. If we can remember back historically to what a true republic looked like, we would remember that there was a time when enforcing the law was a local and municipal responsibility, one which reflected the morals and values of the local populace. It is in this manner that I would like to see prostitution suppressed.”

    I’d be fine with that, if we could go back to a society with a broad moral consensus, as we had before.

    “2. Like sodomy and loan-sharking, prostitution is an illegitimate activity. To attempt to govern and regulate it thus gives it an air of respectability that it does not deserve. I’m actually surprised at the shamelessness of certain females as to freely admit to this activity. Even Tamar covered herself when she played the harlot and approached her father-in-law, Judah (Genesis 38:15).”

    I understand, and I do have some misgivings even despite my position, about the appearance of endorsement factor. That said, is it? Take pornography, for instance; does its legality mean the State is encouraging it? Or does it just mean they aren’t discouraging it?

     
  20. More Anon

    March 31, 2012 at 12:07 pm

    Has anyone noticed the trend of libertarian means being used for statist ends? The removal of laws against s-domy has allowed a massive expansion of government social engineering efforts. Won’t that be the case here too?

    Left-wing prostitution legalization advocates won’t just go away. I suspect we’ll start hearing about “discrimination” against present and former sex workers. We’ll be told of the need to remove stigma via public eduction projects and (worst case scenario) laws and school curricula.

    The regulation of prostitution means government bureaucrats will act as advocates for “clean” or “respectable” prostitution. Is it really good for a city to have some bureaucrat bragging about how great the brothels are? Won’t we start seeing tourism boards incorporating the brothels as a selling point for visitors?

    Will we train and certify medical professionals to care for prostitutes the way a veterinarian cares for cattle?

    These bureaucrats will likely be drawn from the “sex worker advocate” NGOs. Do we really want to empower those people? Like legal abortion clinics or gay clubs, legal brothels may become economic and social power centers for shady characters dedicated to political mischief and social transformation.

    Historically, local communities had a lot more control over their membership. They could more easily self-segregate into respectable and disreputable parts of town. Covenanted neighborhoods could actually screen people who were trying to purchase homes. That’s not the case anymore. You can’t even call a loose woman a slut these days, how are you supposed to keep whores out of your neighborhood?

     
  21. Will S.

    March 31, 2012 at 4:12 pm

    @ MA: Well, certainly, the left has their own agenda, and they’re quite willing to exploit libertarian sentiments if they feel they can use them to further their ends, same as they do when they try to get conservatives on board certain measures, lecturing them on what they ought to support, e.g. “If you believe in family values, you should value all families, including gay ones?” or “If you believe so much in marriage, why not allow gays to marry rather than living in unmarried, promiscuous existence, which you claim to also dislike?”, etc. It’s an old trick.

    I’ve seen street whores in my community operating in impoverished residential neighbourhoods; it would be my hope, should brothels become legal, that operating out of them – out of sight, out of residential neighbourhoods (after all, commercial zoning laws should keep brothels out of residential neighbourhoods) – should indeed be an attractive alternative, thereby lessening the other.

    As for new bureaucracies arising: they may, and they may not.

    Just because they become a bit more open, doesn’t mean cities are going to start promoting them for tourism purposes; after all, if it conflicts with the other image they want to portray – say, of being a family-friendly tourism destination, they’re not going to call attention to them.

    Brothels that are semi-legal, because they operate under ‘plausible deniability’ as ‘massage parlours’, are not typically hyped in tourism campaigns. I remember when the city I live in tore up a street to repair it, there was a sign on behalf of all the affected businesses, with their names and logos, saying, “We’re still open for business!”; conspicuously absent was the local ‘rub-a-tug’ (‘massage parlour’), and a damn good thing, too… Not a business whose existence you want to call attention to. I imagine nothing much would change in that regard; if there were concerns they might complain and say “Hey, we should be able to self-promote, too!”, they could be relegated to industrial parts of town, the way they and strip clubs are in some cities, away from most other commercial, non-industrial operations. Out of sight of most tourists, and not likely to be promoted when the roads are being torn up for repairs…

     
  22. Svar

    March 31, 2012 at 5:10 pm

    Exactly, More Anon! Back in 2003 the federal government forced my home state, Texas, to take our anti-sodomy laws off the books. Now the fags can come out in the open. Fuck Amerika.

    Will, Dr. Fleming has talked about that old trick. As if real leftists know what real conservatives are supposed to believe. You could say in return, “if you’re a real leftist, you should believe in tolerance and fuck off when traditional communities are trying to live by their values, no”?

    Regardless, if leftists think that shitty argument is enough to convince us, they are deluded. We, paleocons atleast, have a strong intellectual tradition. They have their feeeeewwings and what they wish the world should be like.

     
  23. Svar

    March 31, 2012 at 5:15 pm

    “If you believe in family values, you should value all families, including gay ones?”

    This one is a hoot. What the fuck is a “gay family”? A happy family? No, that can’t be it… “gay” is now a new PC word for sod/fag/homo, so it must be a somitical family. It just goes to show how stupid leftists are when they don’t even see how that is an oxymoron.

     
  24. Will S.

    March 31, 2012 at 5:16 pm

    Exactly, Svar. We could retort, “Why don’t you tolerate us, and our ways, if you believe in tolerance?” Of course, we know they don’t believe in tolerance, truly, except for themselves and their pet causes…

    Paleocons won’t be fooled. Neocons, might be.

     
  25. Mark Slater

    April 1, 2012 at 3:54 pm

    “Has anyone noticed the trend of libertarian means being used for statist ends? The removal of laws against s-domy has allowed a massive expansion of government social engineering efforts. Won’t that be the case here too?”

    Good observation, More Anon. Many things ultimately damaging to a healthy society have been promoted under the guise of expanding freedom.

    Two examples:

    Tyrants have uniquely understood that pornography and so-called sexual-liberation is an effective tool for control. It is not for nothing that Hitler, in order to soften Polish resistance and make them more pliant, flooded newsstands and bookstores with pornographic materials. This is the FIRST THING the Nazi’s did after conquering that nation, before even disarming the populace or attempting to inculcate them with Nazi propaganda. Knowing this ought to remind any free-thinking man of the true nature of “first-amendment heroes” like Larry Flynt.

    The liberalization of marijuana laws are actually sponsored and bankrolled by major world financial and political players (George Soros). A nation of doped-up stoners would not notice the general erosion of liberties; or, if they did, lack the wherewithal to do anything about it.

     
  26. Will S.

    April 1, 2012 at 5:22 pm

    Well, people have already not noticed enough, or cared enough, about the loss of civil liberties that has already happened, over the years, under the status quo… TV and porn and other forms of entertainment are enough to keep the masses distracted…

     
  27. Columnist

    April 4, 2012 at 5:36 am

    When it comes to prostitution, Christians should adopt a Dual Morality. Do not allow Christian girls to be pimped, but do allow non-Christian girls to be pimped.

     
  28. Will S.

    April 4, 2012 at 7:43 am

    WTF?

     
  29. Svar

    April 4, 2012 at 9:40 am

    Columnist, do not tell us what orthodox Christians should do. Unless you’re the Pope, your opinions on how Christians should act is meaningless. Seriously, WTF? Why in hell would you think that we’d ever promote a dual morality?

     
  30. Will S.

    April 4, 2012 at 10:08 am

    Exactly, Svar.

    I grow weary of dealing with fucked-up, Spergy commentators.

     
  31. Columnist

    April 4, 2012 at 10:38 am

    I offer my apologies.

     
  32. Will S.

    April 8, 2012 at 10:13 pm

    A street-walkers’ advocate bemoans the new legislation. (HT: Ferd)

    All good; the lack of change of laws and clarification of status for street-walkers and their johns, means the new laws will, by contrast, encourage the movement indoors and off the streets, as I predicted, which IMO is all to the good, for the reasons already stated.

    To heck with the streetwalkers; they are a blight on any community. That option SHOULD be rendered less attractive; one way to do so is to make the alternative (indoor, brothels) more attractive an option for those inclined to sell themselves rather than being on the street.

     
  33. oogenhand

    June 19, 2013 at 3:52 am

    Reblogged this on oogenhand and commented:
    Referred after a year…

     
  34. Will S.

    December 20, 2013 at 4:40 pm

    Supreme Court strikes down Canada’s prostitution laws http://fw.to/I06uJrW

     

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