Sex Work in Canada Should be Legalised For the Same Reasons as Marijuana
The Canadian government under the stewardship of Justin Trudeau legalized pot last year, however, it is yet to legalize sex work for similar reasons. During the processes leading up to its legalization, the Trudeau government realized that marijuana is only harmful to individuals when it is placed in the hands of organized crime. Therefore, marijuana was subsequently recognized as not more inherently dangerous than other consumables such as cigarettes or alcohol.
However, the same logic should apply to sex work as sex is not inherently bad. It only becomes dangerous when those people who have sex do it under unsafe conditions and don’t practice safer sex. For those who argue against its legalization, the moral justification of ‘buying’ sex is usually at the forefront of the argument. But, sex is an integral part of who we are as humans and is even important for our survival. Therefore, it begs the question, why should buying sex from a sex worker be regarded as any more “immoral” than a supermarket selling you food, or a hotel selling you a place to sleep?
Notably, according to the government’s logic, the selling of food and accommodation should have been regarded as an “immoral’ act too. Today in Canada, there are several homeless people living on the streets as a result of what many Canadians might regard as “immoral” restriction of access to food and shelter based on who can afford it.
Justin Trudeau purchased a $4.5 billion Trans Mountain Pipeline in spite of the numerous people having to live off the streets in the cold winters—often having to search garbage cans for food—but it wasn’t exactly viewed as immoral. The argument for and against the what should be morally acceptable can go on and on, as some argue that many Canadian lives would have been saved by diverting some of that money into universal income strategy or other needed programmes in the public healthcare system.
The sex trade industry exists and failing to legalize it can expose these workers to several dangers. But in locations like Britain where paying for sex is legal, escorts in London are protected by law and constantly provide safe sex practises for themselves and their clients.
In a legalized environment, Canadians can ensure that the running of escort businesses can be done in an environment where rights are protected, and laws abided like the marijuana trade that Canada seeks to facilitate. The buying of sex should be no more illegal than the buying of pot or therapeutic services that seek to improve health associated with mind, body and spirit.
It’s evident that when Justin Trudeau’s government sought to pass the legislation to legalize marijuana, it was done because the consumption of marijuana wasn’t viewed as an immoral act. But many Canadians do consider the consumption of marijuana to be immoral. However, it is apparent that the Prime Minister views ‘sex work’ asimmoral and has sought to champion continued efforts to oppress what is referred to by his and other governments as “prostitution”.
In society today, the word “prostitution” is word used to demonize sexuality in general and sex work designed to ‘mind control’ people into conjuring up images of criminality.
In a democratic society like Canada, no leader ought to preside over government simply as a reflection of their own personal morality as Justin Trudeau has sought to do by supporting the legalization of marijuana and on the other hand, championing the continued oppression of sex work.
In a democracy, government must provide an open legal context for the expression of personal morality that is consensual and respectful. Former Prime Minister Pierre Elliot Trudeau, had once said during the late 1960’s when he had presided over the decriminalization of homosexuality that “There’s no place for the state in the bedrooms of the nation.”
Similarly, there ought to be ‘no place for the state in the bedrooms of the nation’ when it comes to ‘sex work’.The legalization of sex work in Canada would make not only create a safer environment for the men and women who have been involved in sex work, it would also remove the culture of crime that pervades the current practice of sex work on the street for the similar reasons used by Justin Trudeau’s government over marijuana trade.
There is the need for the federal government to stop demonizing sex through the morality of organized religion and stop practicing duplicity in its legalization of marijuana.Even during the totalitarian regime of Nazi Germany, the sex work industry still thrived as the Nazis also shared the human need for sex.
Therefore, it safe to say that the Canadian legislative course is bound to capitulate in its misguided efforts which if scrutinized properly hasvirtually nothing to do with protecting women, and everything to do with the efforts of an elite clique to impose a religiously-based fascist construct of “morality” that should have no place in a democracy like Canada.
Sex work needs to be taken out of the hands of the law enforcement and made into a human relations matter as has been practiced in certain progressive parts of Europe like the Netherlands, Germany and Italy.
While discussions about sex is typically avoided in almost every society, the reality still remains that sex is an important part of the human race. Thus, it is in the interest of the society that those people who need sex and choose to buy it because they lack certain interpersonal skills, can’t get enough sex or for some other reason, can do it an environment which is completely safe for them and void of threats such as spreading STDs to other individuals and communities.
It would also be in the best interest of the sex workers themselves, as they can carry out their activities in a safe environment that doesn’t pose any threats to them.
Another benefit of decriminalizing sex work is that sex workers who are currently in Canada as a result of human trafficking, or Canadians who have been kidnapped into the sex trade, will be able to freely report the infringement of their rights without fear of reprisal for having been involved in “illegal prostitution”.
In an environment where sex work is legalized, women and men could openly create and operate businesses discreetly and off-the-street like current “street prostitution” which undermines communities through a culture of drugs and crime not because sex work is “bad” but because of “anti sex work” laws based around a fascistic morality. Such a prevailing context of oppression has no place in a constitutional democratic society which embraces a context of freedom and social justice for all, and which recognizes that different views of morality can co-exist which involved consenting adults.