Legalizing Prostitution

Your article on prostitution reported that "some law enforcement officers interviewed said that, under current laws, trying to eradicate the problem is so hopeless that some form of legal prostitution might be in order." Of course, that's undeniably true, but responsible "proper" society is afraid to propose the obvious: legalized prostitution at specifically authorized locations. These bordellos would be licensed, run by approved madams, physically safe, and medically supervised. The independent contractors there would pay taxes, have health insurance, and be frequently reminded of educational and other options for getting out of the business.

Locations would be geographically dispersed but easily found by potential customers, thereby reducing the neighborhood blight of public street soliciting, cruising cars, violent pimps, drug addiction, and resultant crimes. It would also cut down on various forms of de facto prostitution such as massage parlors and outcall modeling.

To give the police something to do with their new-found free time, they could be doubly diligent in pursuing any real crimes which occur in conjunction with prostitution.

The religious concept of extra-marital sex as "sin" underlies society's unwillingness to deal realistically with the problem. If sexual conservatives would only confront sexual realities for a change, society could make real progress in eliminating the worst aspects of the world's oldest profession.

DICK JAMES

Marina del Rey

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