Tuesday, September 28, 2010

De Facto Slavery

In his working paper on the Swedish prostitution law that criminalizes only those buying and selling prostitutes, not those being bought, Max Waltman examines such topics as the connections between pornography and prostitution, as well as the voids in the social safety net that contribute to the continuity of this form of de facto slavery. Noting that legalization in nearby Holland resulted in an increase in child sexual abuse and sexual harassment, Waltman reminds us that the inherently unequal institution is every bit as abominable as the form of slavery abolished in the Western world two centuries ago. If our laws on prostitution reflect the ambience of our society, then the traumatic harms resulting from such institutionalized violence should concern us all.

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