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(en) France, Alternative Libertair #219 - The issue of prostitution customers (fr) [machine translation]

Date Tue, 16 Oct 2012 14:51:58 +0200

Following the publication of the article "What the customer? "Alternative libertarian in March, we publish here an alternative viewpoint on the issue, AL with no fixed position for the moment on this topic. ---- We are abolitionists and we do not believe that government intervention in any form whatsoever, can make a step forward this struggle almost invisible. The reality of prostitution is very little known in its entirety and for good reason, it is of great complexity. ---- If trafficking is the most visible face and most deadly, prostitution in all its forms is generating violence. However, we do not expect to make the full weight of the clients whose social morphology covers a multiple reality. It does not seem possible that the abolition of prostitution can pass through coercion, but rather by the questioning of the patriarchal system, which can be done by the database.

You can not change society by bourgeois justice

We analyze the legislative and judicial apparatus as a tool of repression and domination of the ruling class against the exploited class-es. As libertarian communists, we also oppose any repressive measures, any manifestation of authority and arbitrary. For this reason and whatever struggle or purpose, we can not support any proof safe from the state. It does not cure evil with evil ...

In addition, security solutions have not proven that to protect the interests of the bourgeoisie. Repression of customers does not seem to deviate from this rule. Already in 1917, Emma Goldman, denounced the state, starting a crusade against prostitution, prostitutes précarisait advantage and promoted the development of procurement. [1] We question the real value that can be punishing clients. Is that it may actually deter customers? Is this a way to achieve the abolition of prostitution? We think not. We do not see how a fine or imprisonment may lead a client to challenge the patriarchal system in which prostitution is an "outgrowth even caricature" [2].

Only the struggle against patriarchal society can lead to such awareness.

But the state apparatus - both legislative and judicial - has no vocation to lead this fight but perpetuates inequalities of class and gender. If we look at the effects of anti-pimping, one realizes that the punishment of pimps drove prostitutes to meet up with the threat of state and their pimps. They also often find themselves accused of pimping for fear of accusing their pimps. Justice is an instrument of class society which condemns those who gather faced by their social origin. Punishment is obviously not the same for everyone and a safe applied to clients of prostitution once again lead to the conviction of the poorest. On reading the report of the parliamentary information mission on prostitution, released in 2011 [3], we realize that security laws to prostitution tend more to become a tool in the fight against illegal immigration, so dear to the State in time of crisis. It is therefore unthinkable for us to support the repressive state apparatus in order to fight against the patriarchal system.

Being abolitionist does not moralistic

Present as the criminalization of the client solution is to ignore the systems of domination in which prostitution fits: patriarchy and capitalism. There is a difference between saying "prostitution is bad" and "prostitution is a social evil." In the first case, the prostitute and client-es-es are judged morally, and as a result, the customer, they are both likely to be punished. In the second, we seek in the functioning of society, what are the causes and factors that lead people into prostitution, and those who favor the application. Thus, while for women, it will be more bearable to sell as a sexual object, than to be agent of production, the system of prostitution will not disappear. The customer's place in the system of prostitution makes it a link, it can not be the source.

Otherwise, this is a moral reform that we would expect, by focusing on the elimination of a primitive instinct of the man who would drive the consumption of sexual services. Such laws are based and convey a moral aspects Puritans lined misplaced humanism, they actually participate in maintaining the system.

Necessarily impact

The law does not say prostitutes. But its purpose, at least announced, is to reduce the number of prostitutes. It seems difficult not to accept it affects those involved. Ignore these consequences is to accept them, or they can increase the vulnerability of prostitutes. In fact, the customer is the main source of income workers and sex workers, the latter will have no other choice if they wish to continue their activity, to adapt even to endanger: distance of the places where the police are too present, therefore greater exposure to violence increases the need for an intermediary, then work for pimps, installation or aggravation of competition and continuous change of workplace, thus greater difficulty in creating places collective health, protection or control ...

If this law is not "directly" prostitutes, it is not accompanied by any real measure to ensure their safety and / or exit prostitution.

Such consequences, in addition to endangering and worsen the living conditions of prostitutes are as a real obstacle to the possibility of collective struggle, and thus as real barrier to the possibility of emancipation through them prostitutes themselves. After all, is not that the best guarantee of a real emancipation, it is put in place and supported by the oppressed?

Flo and Marine (AL Montpellier)

[1] Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Others Essays - the white slave trade and prostitution in America, 1917
[2] Brigitte Raskin, "Prostitution and patriarchal society", in, Deviance and Society, 1986 - Vol. 10 - No. 3. pp. 289-291.
[3] Report of parliamentary information mission on prostitution, No. 3334, April 13, 2011
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