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Thread: Prostitution in Sweden

  1. #1
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    Prostitution in Sweden

    Given the circumstances in the news on a particular NY governor, thought this might be of interest, and an interesting way of dealing with prostitution.

    [url]http://ca.news.yahoo.com/s/capress/sweden_prostitution[/url]



    By Karl Ritter, The Associated Press
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    STOCKHOLM, Sweden - Selling sex isn't illegal in Sweden, but buying is - a radical approach to prostitution that faced ridicule when it was introduced nine years ago.

    Now, while Americans are preoccupied with the downfall of New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer in a prostitution scandal, some countries are considering emulating the Swedish model, which prosecutes the client but views the prostitute as an exploited victim.

    Officials say the changed approach has reduced the demand for prostitutes and reshaped attitudes toward the sex trade.

    "We don't have a problem with prostitutes. We have a problem with men who buy sex," said Kajsa Wahlberg, of the human trafficking unit at Sweden's national police board.

    She said foreign law enforcement officials and politicians are coming to Sweden in droves to learn more about its 1999 law.

    On Friday, Wahlberg was meeting with police officials from the Netherlands, where prostitution is legal but where authorities have closed some brothels in a crackdown on organized crime in Amsterdam's red light district.

    In January, a high-level British delegation came to study the Swedish approach as Britain reviews its own prostitution laws, which prohibit soliciting and loitering for sex, but not buying sex.

    Norway's government plans to propose a Swedish-style prostitution law after Easter.

    Under Sweden's so-called "Sex Purchase Law," paying for sex is punished by fines or up to six months in prison, plus the humiliation of public exposure. A handful of Swedish judges have been caught up in prostitution scandals, including a Supreme Court justice who was fined in 2005 after admitting to paying for sex with a young man.

    Pimps and brothel keepers are also prosecuted, but not prostitutes, because they are viewed as victims, treated as commodities in the sex trade.

    While authorities judge the new system a success, critics question whether it has really reduced prostitution or merely pushed it off the streets into more isolated and dangerous surroundings. Wahlberg concedes that accurate statistics are hard to obtain, but estimates the number of prostitutes in Sweden dropped 40 per cent from 2,500 in 1998 to 1,500 in 2003.

    She says police know from eavesdropping on human trafficking rings that Sweden is considered bad business because of its tough stance.

    "They are calculating profits, costs and marketing and the risk of getting caught," Wahlberg said. "We're trying to create a bad market for these activities."

    Conscious of the international interest, Sweden's government is planning a thorough review of the effects of the law, expected to be ready next year.

    Petra Ostergren, a writer who has studied prostitution for a decade, doesn't think it has worked well.

    "Sex purchases have not decreased, many young women sell sex temporarily over the Internet to fund university studies," she said.

    A 46-year-old escort who is a vocal opponent of the law said it had left prostitutes more vulnerable to violence. "If a sex worker seeks to establish contact with a client on the street, and police are waiting around the corner, she's going to jump into the car without making a security assessment," she said.

    The mother of two, known to the public by the pseudonym Isabella Lund, said authorities never consulted sex workers on the change.

    The Swedish law took effect at a time when many European countries were moving in another direction. Neighbouring Denmark, for example, decriminalized prostitution in 1999 after quietly tolerating it for two decades.

    Most European countries prohibit pimping and running brothels, but tolerate prostitution and penalize neither prostitutes nor clients. Brothels are legal in Holland and Germany provided they have business licences.

    Marianne Eriksson said she was ridiculed by fellow legislators when she first proposed the change in the European Parliament in 1997.

    "To them it was the most absurd thing they ever heard. Many of them roared with laughter," recalled Eriksson, who has since left Europe's elected multinational legislature to chair the Stockholm branch of the opposition Left Party.

    Today, she said, she feels the Swedish model has "a very strong response" in other European countries, even if many of them ultimately decide against adopting it.

    The view of prostitution as a legacy of a societal order that subordinates women to men is universally accepted among major political parties in gender-conscious Sweden.

    The urge to set things right led Claes Borgstrom, Sweden's equality ombudsman, to propose that the country boycott the 2006 soccer World Cup in Germany, because of an expected surge in prostitution during the monthlong tournament. The idea was immediately rejected by the Swedish soccer federation.

  2. #2
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    No, this is just as bad as our system. It's wrong, in every way that matters...just like our system.

    Postitution is not wrong, and the state should have no right to limit it (tax it yes, overr the rules of it, yes, but limit it no).

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    If the government could tax prostitution, it would be legalized.

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    [QUOTE=Warfish;2434590]No, this is just as bad as our system. It's wrong, in every way that matters...just like our system.

    Postitution is not wrong, and the state should have no right to limit it (tax it yes, overr the rules of it, yes, but limit it no).[/QUOTE]

    That is what they are saying Warfish....they are saying there is nothing wrong with prostitution, but there is something wrong with soliciting and paying for the sex.

    Is that what you mean? There is nothing wrong with someone selling their body, and nothing wrong buying someone's body?

  5. #5
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    [QUOTE=Warfish;2434590]No, this is just as bad as our system. It's wrong, in every way that matters...just like our system.

    Postitution is not wrong, and the state should have no right to limit it (tax it yes, overr the rules of it, yes, but limit it no).[/QUOTE]

    Prostitution is not just a commercial transaction between two people, it has spawned a slave trade and the exploitation of millions of young women all over the world. It is debases us as human beings. That is not necessarily a reason to make it illegal just like the use of drugs, gambling or any number of vices that are illegal should or shouldn't be illegal. That doesn't mean it isn't wrong or that a free society doesn't have a right to legislate against it or attempt to legislate against it.

  6. #6
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    [QUOTE=CanadaSteve;2434769]That is what they are saying Warfish....they are saying there is nothing wrong with prostitution, but there is something wrong with soliciting and paying for the sex.

    Is that what you mean? There is nothing wrong with someone selling their body, and nothing wrong buying someone's body?[/QUOTE]

    I am saying that a women (or man) selling sex to a man (or a women) is NOT ****ING WRONG!!!!!!!! It's not your business, and it's not the Govt.'s business outside of regulation (like any business) and taxation (like any business).

    There is no reason whatssoever for it being illegal outside of RELIGION. None. And frankly, I really wish we could keep two thousand year old prudish faith out of our Freedom, if you please.

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    [QUOTE=Winstonbiggs;2435025]Prostitution is not just a commercial transaction between two people, it has spawned a slave trade and the exploitation of millions of young women all over the world. It is debases us as human beings. That is not necessarily a reason to make it illegal just like the use of drugs, gambling or any number of vices that are illegal should or shouldn't be illegal. That doesn't mean it isn't wrong or that a free society doesn't have a right to legislate against it or attempt to legislate against it.[/QUOTE]

    A. I cannot legislate, regulate or control what other backwards ass cojntries do. It is NOT RELEVANT to what we, in the U.S., do.

    B. Legalization brings regulataion, oversight and taxation. There will be NO SLAVES in a legal U.S. Prostitution System. There would be legal Business fronts.

    C. Legalization allows focus of resources on true "problem" areas. Try to work outside the legal system, or engage in "slavery", then the Law comes down hard like a sledgehammer. But instead of arresting hundreds just for the act (an act that isn't any more wrong than any OTHER non-married sex, all of which is legal) you focus and hit the REAL problem people, i.e. your "slave trade".

    D. Your "debasement" argument is a bull**** pile of moral relativistic prudish bull****, pure and simple. You may think personally that the selling of a sexual act "debases" you, BUT YOU DO NOT have the right to decide morallity for everyone else, and frankly I am sick of people who think they do. There are plenty of people in America today who have no issues whatsoever with the idea whatsoever. The illegallity is the problem, in every way.

    I would love to see how some of you would react, if say, this "free society" decided to make teaching of religion to those under 18 (which is, frankly, brainwahsing, not education) illegal. Wonder how quickly you folks whould be crying out about lost freedom because something YOU think is ok gets trodden upon by an intrusive Govt.

    Look, I am not a prostitute (lol) nor do I use them (lol x2) but I think the prusish leftovers of faith-based freedom killing has to go. I am tired of the reason for so many things in America being limited is "faith-based", not logic or reality based. Freedom. Not Religion.

    Sadly, this country is headed the wrong way on these issues...unless your gay of course. Good for them.

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    [QUOTE=Winstonbiggs;2435025]Prostitution is not just a commercial transaction between two people, it has spawned a slave trade and the exploitation of millions of young women all over the world. It is debases us as human beings. That is not necessarily a reason to make it illegal just like the use of drugs, gambling or any number of vices that are illegal should or shouldn't be illegal. That doesn't mean it isn't wrong or that a free society doesn't have a right to legislate against it or attempt to legislate against it.[/QUOTE]

    I have to agree with you on this Winston...

    I just do not understand the mindset of this having anything to do with "a free society." This concept is beyond me. It has nothing to do with moral relativism, actually quite the opposite. And it has nothing to do with "a two thousand year old religious book."

    Actually, if we are to say it this way, why is there anything at all called morality. It is all relative. Funny, when you look at statistics in countries like this, they always seem to be the ones that have the lowest crime rates, sexual abuse problems, murders, etc...

    Yet, the societies that cry the loudest for "freedom," meaning I can do whatever I want when I want in many regards, always seem to have major problems.

    Is this an over-simplification? Of course it is. But there is something to the control of human excessiveness that is good for a society. And contrary to popular belief, many of these "socialist" societies are not controlled by the government; they choose as a society to have such lines drawn in the sand.

  9. #9
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    [QUOTE=Warfish;2435153]A. I cannot legislate, regulate or control what other backwards ass cojntries do. It is NOT RELEVANT to what we, in the U.S., do.

    B. Legalization brings regulataion, oversight and taxation. There will be NO SLAVES in a legal U.S. Prostitution System. There would be legal Business fronts.

    C. Legalization allows focus of resources on true "problem" areas. Try to work outside the legal system, or engage in "slavery", then the Law comes down hard like a sledgehammer. But instead of arresting hundreds just for the act (an act that isn't any more wrong than any OTHER non-married sex, all of which is legal) you focus and hit the REAL problem people, i.e. your "slave trade".

    D. Your "debasement" argument is a bull**** pile of moral relativistic prudish bull****, pure and simple. You may think personally that the selling of a sexual act "debases" you, BUT YOU DO NOT have the right to decide morallity for everyone else, and frankly I am sick of people who think they do. There are plenty of people in America today who have no issues whatsoever with the idea whatsoever. The illegallity is the problem, in every way.

    I would love to see how some of you would react, if say, this "free society" decided to make teaching of religion to those under 18 (which is, frankly, brainwahsing, not education) illegal. Wonder how quickly you folks whould be crying out about lost freedom because something YOU think is ok gets trodden upon by an intrusive Govt.

    Look, I am not a prostitute (lol) nor do I use them (lol x2) but I think the prusish leftovers of faith-based freedom killing has to go. I am tired of the reason for so many things in America being limited is "faith-based", not logic or reality based. Freedom. Not Religion.

    Sadly, this country is headed the wrong way on these issues...unless your gay of course. Good for them.[/QUOTE]

    I could care less what two consenting adults do but most of the prostitutes in the US are essentially slaves of their pimps. The fact that you are clueless about what is going on in the streets of most US cities regarding prostitution doesn't make me a prude.

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    Bring back Kobe. We need a "Pimpin ain't easy blog".:yes:

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    [QUOTE=Winstonbiggs;2435722]I could care less what two consenting adults do but most of the prostitutes in the US are essentially slaves of their pimps. The fact that you are clueless about what is going on in the streets of most US cities regarding prostitution doesn't make me a prude.[/QUOTE]

    Please, clueless? What, you watched "Ho's on the Block" on HBO, and now you're a friggin expert? Don't be so full of yourself Winston.:rolleyes:

    Legalization ends Pimps. Oversight and regulation (i.e. inspection) ends abuse and any "slavery". You call me clueless, I call you naive and simplistic if you think legalization and regulation doesn't cure the vast majority of side effects of an illegal endeavor.

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    [QUOTE=Warfish;2436090]Please, clueless? What, you watched "Ho's on the Block" on HBO, and now you're a friggin expert? Don't be so full of yourself Winston.:rolleyes:

    Legalization ends Pimps. Oversight and regulation (i.e. inspection) ends abuse and any "slavery". You call me clueless, I call you naive and simplistic if you think legalization and regulation doesn't cure the vast majority of side effects of an illegal endeavor.[/QUOTE]

    Just like legalized gambling got rid of vice in NJ and CT. And Lotto and OTB got rid of it in NY. I'm clueless and a prude and you think legalizing something is going to make all the problems associated with it go away.:rolleyes:
    Last edited by Winstonbiggs; 03-17-2008 at 06:17 AM.

  13. #13
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    [QUOTE=Winstonbiggs;2436420]got rid of vice[/QUOTE]

    Why are you trying to get rid of "vice"?

    Vice, as you call it, isn't the problem. Unless your a preacher, of course.

    It's the associated criminal element and activity that supports it whilst it remains illegal or poorly overseen/regulated.

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    [QUOTE=Warfish;2436090]Please, clueless? What, you watched "Ho's on the Block" on HBO, and now you're a friggin expert? Don't be so full of yourself Winston.:rolleyes:

    Legalization ends Pimps. Oversight and regulation (i.e. inspection) ends abuse and any "slavery". You call me clueless, I call you naive and simplistic if you think legalization and regulation doesn't cure the vast majority of side effects of an illegal endeavor.[/QUOTE]


    War, if you believe that mere legalization and regulation will cure the "vast majority" of the problems associated with prostitution, then it is you who are naive and over simplistic. This is a buisness run by criminals, and even with taxation and regulation it will still be a buisness run by gangstas and thugs. If you could ensure that the government would have complete control of prostitution then maybe it can work, but merely creating taxes and some form of regulation will not stop the problems connected with this industry.

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