"Trafficking" now includes consenting adult sexwork even if legal in the rest of the world except the U.S (private consenting adults)
American Military Men upset with new anti prostitution law in UCMJ
From Dave's E-mail
Hi Dave, I have been reading your web site for a few years now, and I wanted to thank you for the great info that you provided about TER! I was just about to join them and because of your info you not only saved me money but also any trouble I might run into with LE. Thanks man and keep up the great work you do!

On a more distressing note that I want to bring to your attention, as you can tell from my address, I'm in the Army. I have been all over the world and I have had to company of many fine women who work in the business. When one is in a position as me, working the hours that I have and the rank that I have, relationships must take a back burner. In this time we live in and the operational tempo that me and my fellow service members have been under, the hours we work, are usually a minimum of 12 hrs a day, 5 days a week, sometimes longer and sometimes weekends as well. Like I said relationships are strained, my marriage went south while I was deployed for 17 months straight, with only 2, 15 day leave periods in the entire 17 months!

Now the DOD in an attempt to creak down on human trafficking, (a very important thing to do, when you are talking about the real scum that do this) has also made using the service of a prostitute a crime according to military law, which is called the Uniform Code of Military Justice, (UCMJ).

Not only is prostitute a crime, but now also is visiting one as well! EVEN in legal brothels of Europe/ Asia or even in NV, USA!! This is just wrong! what I do to have some type of contact with a women, that I'm not able to have on base has nothing to do with my job, or how well I do it!!

When I'm state side, I use the services 1 or 2 times a month, I call a girl, take here out to dinner, have a nice time, and then go back to her place or to nice hotel for a few hours of fun. I wake the next day ready to return to work, ready to return to what I consider a very important job, DEFENDING THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICIA!!!, and I'm damm proud to do this!!

Now the DOD/ GOVT, wants me take this away from me also. 15 years ago they cracked down on drinking, so now that if a SR military person gets pulled over even after 1 drink by the MP's, he/ she can kiss there ENTIRE career good bye!! What more are they going to take away from us!?!, what do they want mindless robots!?!

Just wanted to bring this to you attention, and to vent a little, thanks
(PS you can use my pen name, but please do not use my email address if you want to post this)

Dave says
Obviously I totally agree and think sexwork can be good for society and when its legal (in private consenting adult) in all most all the world except the U.S., it should be none of the DOD's business what you do in a country were its legal!

Part of the problem also is the word "trafficking". The Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act (TVPRA) passed was passed unanimously by the House and Senate. President Bush signed it into law on January 10 2006. Under this law, trafficking is defined as ALL commercial sex including private adult consenting sexwork. If its forced its defined as "extreme trafficking". But there are huge amount of Fed funds going to local LE as well as an extension of the Mann Act definitions early which target in private consenting adults under the definition of what sounds so bad "trafficking" when its private and legal again in almost all the world with no big issues except in the U.S. The religious right and feminists war on all sex unless in marriage continues to destroy our rights to privacy and "love, liberty and the pursuit of happiness" supposedly in the U.S. Bill of Rights which has been trampled by the religious right/feminists fanatics that know what is best for us vs. our personal freedoms.

Reminder: Decriminalize Private Adult Sexwork Coalition
http://www.sexwork.com/coalition/index.html  Sharing information in the fight for private sexwork rights since 1998
Key Message:
Private Consenting Adult Prostitution is legal with no major negative issues in almost all the world except the U.S.  The issues of children, coerced trafficking, public nuisance street hookers, and pimps HAVE NOTHING TO DO with Private Consenting Adult sexwork - GET IT!!!!  And  educate the public to get upset with lawmakers for wasting money on private consenting adult behavior!  Get the law out of our bedrooms!


Sadly More Internet Stings
Wasting Resources for Private Sexuality is spreading  And the FEDS Doing it.
Update:  Her husband was charged under the Mann Act since activities were interstate, not TVPRA. The funding to enforce state and federal anti sex laws is being provided by special grants to local agencies to enforce laws including in private consenting adult sexwork that is not coerced but just "trafficking" even if not "severe trafficking" which involves coercion.

Aussie Amber  http://www.aussieamber.net
Sadly Aussie Amber and her husband who helps with appointment was busted big time by the Feds.  She is a periodic visitor to Phoenix (see her discussion board post of 12/7/05) This time it was the Feds going after Private Consenting Adult Sexwork, with no victims other than the morality of the extreme Christian Right.  She refused to have reviews on TER due to the dishonestly of that board, but had many reviews on TBD.

Her husband  is facing both state and federal charges in connection with an alleged arranged meeting between his wife and an undercover officer at a Salt Lake hotel on Dec. 28. She advertised as a traveling escort service complete with Web site that encouraged visitors to visit her "reviews" from past clients, including graphic descriptions of sexual activity.

An undercover officer contacted Quick and arranged a meeting with his wife. In the room, police reported the officer gave the wife the $350 "donation" as requested on her Web site. Documents state that the wife then asked the officer to take all his clothes off, and the officer complied. The woman then removed her clothes. Police reported the officer touched the woman on the hip for "two seconds," then other officers moved in for the arrest.

Amber is facing a prostitution charge in state court. Husband was indicted by a federal grand jury on one count of persuading travel for prostitution. If convicted, he could face a maximum of 10 years in prison with a $250,000 fine. He also faces one count of aggravated exploitation of prostitution in state district court.

Interesting that the helpful husband faces far more serious charges under Federal law than Amber since there is no federal law against being a prostitute, but is the Man Act for transporting which it seems the Feds are making a case includes arranging.  Hope they have a good attorney and will fight it.

Source: http://deseretnews.com/dn/view/1%2C1249%2C635174762%2C00.html

Dave sent the following e-mail to Aussie Amber:
“Aussie Amber” – In regards to your recent unfortunately arrest. Ideas for a defense:

As long as its private consenting adult especially outcall prostitution in my view juries should be told how the U.S. is almost the only country in the world where private consenting adult sexwork is illegal.

 You can of course also try to convince a judge or jury that no sex was offered for money only your time, and what else you did as consenting adults is not a crime as long as no money directed related to sex.

The prostitution laws are based on morality which according to opinions in the Lawrence vs Texas Supreme Court case is no basis for laws.

While my non lawyer view is to suggest a constitutional defense using the Lawrence vs. Texas opinions, although with a different court make up it may be too late since you first have to lose the case at the local level, lose appeals and try to get the Supreme Court to hear. Sadly because of the huge legal costs, cases usually get plea bargained instead of challenges that could help the entire sexwork industry.

Many of us are fed up with mixing forced sex trafficking, or public nuisance street hookers, which should be and is illegal around the world, vs. private consenting adult sexwork, especially outcall, which is legal in virtually all the world except the U.S. I believe most of the public does not want public police resources being used for private morality crimes with no victims other than the religious right moralist and feminist extremists.

My extensive write up from lawyers meeting on Lawrence vs Texas case (also discusses prostitution issue besides swing clubs which was main audience addresses) at http://www.libchrist.com/swing/lawconference.html  In middle of report for example the arguments:

But the next part (of the Lawrence vs. Texas case) was a shocker - The Human Rights decision. With the addition of O'Connor and (forget who) dissenting the majority of the Court by a close 5-4 decision said it was a human rights issue to be able to have individual liberty to seek enjoyment in what ever way someone pleased that didn't hurt others or the State. Also used the right to privacy argument which in the opinion the wording was taken directly from the Roe vs Wade abortion rights case. And then the decision went even further to say that laws based on MORALITY were unconstitutional !!!! That is a 180 degree shift from many previous lower court decisions.

U.S. Supreme Court Justices say in Lawrence v. Texas: "Liberty protects the person from unwarranted government intrusions into a dwelling or other private places. In our tradition the State is not omnipresent in the home. And there are other spheres of our lives and existence, outside the home, where the State should not be a dominant presence. Freedom extends beyond spatial bounds. Liberty presumes an autonomy of self that includes freedom of thought, belief, expression, and certain intimate conduct." [Kennedy, writing for the majority, 02-102, June 2003] Or: "A law branding one class of persons as criminal solely based on the State's moral disapproval of that class and the conduct associated with that class runs contrary to the values of the Constitution and the Equal Protection Clause, under any standard of review." [O'Connor, concurring in part, 02-102, June 2003]

Thomas Jefferson, in the Declaration of Independence, wrote, "..that they are endowed with certain inalienable rights. ... That among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness." I believe that in private consenting adult sexuality falls under pursuit of happiness!
Brandy comments
You'd think that the supposedly progressive society here would be able to get over their sexual phobias.

Dave replies:
I think overall society has - its the Republican controlled Congress and of course Bush and his Dept of Justice that just passed the new laws, Bush signs and the DOJ is stepping up enforcement in all areas of adult sexuality. And local law enforcement aided by new funding from Washington and pushed by the religious right fanatical groups that are the real problem.

I think most of society doesn't want to waste police and court resources on private consenting adults, but they only think of street hookers and forced trafficking and think all these laws are about that, not private sexwork that other than the extremists care about.

I use as an example, co-founder with myself of Liberated Christians Bill, who does go to a very traditional conservative Church in Phoenix and has no interest in the sexwork issue. He told me after Sheriff Joe's busts the talk in the Church was how it was a waste of money to go after private consenting adults. That even in a traditional (but not radical) conservative Christian Church.

Brandy replies: I'm always going to believe that 'where there's life there's hope' and maybe someday the Republicans and their Bible thumping friends will focus more on how to improve themselves

Dave replies: And someday they need to realize their is nothing biblically wrong with "common" prostitution in the bible. Nor men having as many wives and concubines as they wish other than the Elders of the Churches of Corinth and Timothy probably related to local situations of not being comfortable with the Hebrew way of many wives and concubines.
Going after websites & More Consenting Adult sexwork
Sex Sting Snares Eight Engaged In Online Prostitution 1/12/06
Stanislaus County Sheriff's detectives have arrested eight people in connection with a growing number of local prostitutes soliciting online.  Three women and five men were arrested in the sting operation targeting prostitutes and their customers who posted to an internet website, according to Stanislaus County Sheriff's officials. Detective Ken Hedrick said he started the month-long investigation after noticing several local women advertising for prostitution online.  "Prostitution is alive and thriving on the Internet right now," Hedrick said.

Of the five men arrested for soliciting online sex, two were already registered as sex offenders for previous crimes. Hedrick said investigators will also pursue charges against websites who host prostitution ads.

And Another
All in private, no underage, just private services which in my view benefits our culture.
Detectives said the escort service accounted for nearly 7,000 liaisons a year. Bachmann spent more than $40,000 annually advertising his business under the names Centerfolds, The Butt Man, Florida's Finest and Unique Escorts in adult magazines, the phone book, local newspapers and Web sites .Bachmann had 100-plus phone numbers to serve his clients. And he did business under more than 40 fictitious names, according to the state Division of Corporations. "He was a major player," an undercover vice sergeant said. "This is taking away a large percentage of prostitution in south Palm Beach County."  Bachmann, 41, and his estranged wife, 42, were charged with operating a business of prostitution, deriving support from prostitution and 11 counts of money laundering. They were being held in the Palm Beach County Jail.

An anonymous letter to detectives sparked a three-year investigation by the Boca Raton police into the Bachmanns' alleged criminal enterprise. Through undercover operations, the seizure of David Bachmann's computers in 2004 and talks with current and former employees and a longtime customer, detectives said they learned of an intricate operation dating back to the early 1990s.  (Look at the huge amount of police resources used vs. going after real criminals with real victims)

In March 2005, following a 2 1/2-year investigation, Boca Raton police shut down a North Dixie Highway brothel and seized $342,639 from the madam's bank accounts. Nahir Romero, whose Dreamescape bordello brought in $15,000 to $20,000 a month, was sentenced in September to a year in jail, followed by two years of house arrest and seven years of probation.

Source: http://www.palmbeachpost.com/pbcsouth/content/local_news/epaper/2006/01/13/m1a_brPIMP_0113.html
More Web Busts in New York - 1/15/06 New York Newsday report summary:
They operate from very modest offices in Manhattan, federal agents say, but have tantalizing Web sites. The cyber brothels of New York City are raking in the dough, according to investigators who say they are discovering more and more of these highly lucrative businesses. "A classic blonde girl next door, Victoria is one girl anyone can feel comfortable with," said one "New York Elites" Web site entry. "Her near perfect figure and heart warming charm makes for a combination that will ultimately melt your mind." (Heaven forbid citizens be allowed the freedom to enjoy such an option). 

"Now we are finding a lot of focus on the adult trade," Ficke said of the Internet rings. The businesses flourish for several reasons, authorities say. They have low overhead costs, and the Internet both confers virtual anonymity upon the customers and gives those who operate the sex businesses an easy way to do background checks on potential clients to try to avoid law enforcement sting operations.

Recent massive busts include Julie Moya using Internet site Julinyc is serving 2-5 years in state prison for promoting prostitution.  Jason Itzler who ran NY Confidential an escort agency is in Rikers Island prison  for promoting prostitution whose case is on appeal and New York Elites and Exotica 2000 latest big escort agency busts. "Using the Internet, New York Elites displayed vital statistics and enticing information about its escorts."

Investigators said the system worked like this: After calling the New York Elites switchboard at 12 E. 32nd St., potential customers were given a background check to weed out undercover cops. If they cleared, the customers told the operators which girls they wanted, sometimes using number identifications that they got from the Web site.

Unlike human trafficking operations in which the women are coerced to do the sex work, the New York Elites business was strictly consensual, said Ficke and other investigators. That has prompted some to question why the government pursued the case. "We are way behind the times trying to think we can eradicate prostitution by spending all of this time and money and law enforcement effort when it can be used in more constructive ways," Frankel said.  "There are other types of criminal activity that seem much more deserving of this type of significant expenditure of resources," said Trochtchenkova's attorney, Patricia Pileggi of Manhattan.

Federal prosecutors in Manhattan said in court records this was their first-ever case under the law barring interstate prostitution that does not involve trafficking, the mob or tax evasion. But they denied it was a case of selective prosecution.

Full report at http://www.nynewsday.com/news/local/crime/nyc-pros0115,0,4583145,print.story?coll=nyc-homepage-breaking2
Here is the U.S. Code they are using note the deception as usual, while its titled Coercion and enticement it applies to consenting adult sexworkers:
TITLE 18 > PART I > CHAPTER 117 > § 2422
Federal Code § 2422. Coercion and enticement
Release date: 2005-08-03
(a) Whoever knowingly persuades, induces, entices, or coerces any individual to travel in interstate or foreign commerce, or in any Territory or Possession of the United States, to engage in prostitution, or in any sexual activity for which any person can be charged with a criminal offense, or attempts to do so, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both.

(b) Whoever, using the mail or any facility or means of interstate or foreign commerce, or within the special maritime and territorial jurisdiction of the United States knowingly persuades, induces, entices, or coerces any individual who has not attained the age of 18 years, to engage in prostitution or any sexual activity for which any person can be charged with a criminal offense, or attempts to do so, shall be fined under this title and imprisoned not less than 5 years and not more than 30 years.
Money Laundering Offence
From The New York Elites Agency Case:

The Complaint further alleges that TROCHTCHENKOVA and ABBASSY used bank accounts in the names of other companies to conduct the financial business of New York Elites, including
receiving credit card payments and writing checks to their prostitute employees. 

If convicted of the charges, TROCHTCHENKOVA, ABBASSY, and HAIRSTON face a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison and an $11million fine.

Source: http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/nys/Press%20Releases/April05/Trochtchenkova%20Complaint%20PR.pdf

That is ALL that Money Laundering Felony charge needs to be based on!  BE CAREFUL !
Sex positive people need their own Stonewall like gays.
Gays got so fed up with the repression they revolted and the infamous Stonewall experience was the turning point to get legal changes made regarding attacks on gays.

Since I was not that familiar with Stonewall I found http://www.stonewallrevisited.com  which says: For gay, lesbian and bisexual activists, the word "Stonewall" signifies quite possibly the most important, single landmark in the worldwide struggle for gay rights. Most chroniclers of the homosexual rights movement trace the beginnings of the movement's militant phase to 1969 and New York's lower-Manhattan (largely gay-frequented) Stonewall Bar. There, for the first time on record, homosexual patrons fought back when Stonewall was raided one hot summer night by New York City policemen, who came hoping to arrest gay individuals for engaging in then illegal homosexual acts. Eyewitnesses claim that the homosexual patrons' counter-riot began when one burly, Stonewall patron hurled a lidded, metal garbage can filled with empty liquor bottles through a police car window. Ever since that night, Stonewall has been revered as an enduring symbol of the gay militant spark lit that night, which has become a gay/lesbian/bisexual militant conflagration setting America -- and the world -- aflame with gay rights issues and conflicts.

While I don't agree with the violence, it was the result of gays getting so fed up with their status it was the starting point of getting laws and attitudes changed. We have the Lawrence vs Texas Superme Court case that needs to have a sexworker case argued with. We need public education on how much police and Court resources are wasted enforcing private consenting adult sexuality, not only with sexworkers but swingers and other sex positive people. The public needs to be educated that Bush's religious right morality can not be a basis for laws.

The U.S. is virtually the only country in the world where at least private consenting adult outcall sexwork is illegal. We need to educate and demand sexual freedoms the rest of the world enjoys. Canada, for close example that I am very familiar with. This fight is NOT for public nuisance street hookers for which their is a huge public interest to remain illegal but for private consenting adult sexuality.
Pres Bush signed HR 972 bill
The excuse is all about forced trafficking and children. But in it written to appy to ALL commercial sexwork:

Washington - President Bush has signed the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2005, H.R. 972, a bill whose frequent use of the term "commercial sex act" to describe "any sex act on account of which anything of value is given to or received by any person" is likely to cause trouble for the adult industry.

"In today's world, too often human traffickers abuse the trust of children and expose them to the worst of life at a young age," Bush said during the bill signing ceremony Monday. "It takes a perverse form of evil to exploit and hurt those vulnerable members of society. Human traffickers operate with greed and without conscience, treating their victims as nothing more than goods and commodities for sale to the highest bidder... Thousands of teenagers and young girls are trafficked into the United States every year. They're held hostage. They're forced to submit to unspeakable evil."

"We're attacking this problem aggressively," he continued. "Over the past four years, the Department of Homeland Security has taken new measures to protect children from sexual predators, as well as pornography and prostitution rings. The Department of Health and Human Services has partnered with faith-based and community organizations to form anti-trafficking coalitions in 17 major cities across our country. The Department of Justice has more than tripled the number of cases brought against these traffickers."

That is the spin. The reality of the contents is in prior post which defines ALL commercial sex including consenting adults as trafficking!

Much more details about the law at
Patronizing prostitutes just got more costly
New rule means those convicted face dishonorable discharge, jail
January 24, 2006
Service members now may pay dearly for hiring a prostitute. Under a change in the Manual for Courts-Martial, troops who patronize prostitutes can receive a dishonorable discharge, forfeiture of all pay and allowances and up to a year in jail. “Before now, there was no explicit prohibition on patronizing a prostitute,” said Eugene Fidell, president of the National Institute of Military Justice. “It’s clear they’re getting serious about this. I think it’s a sign of changing values in our society, including military society. Once upon a time, this kind of thing was rampant, like heavy drinking and smoking.”

The change took effect Nov. 13 but received renewed emphasis by the Pentagon after President Bush signed a law Jan. 10 containing various provisions designed to combat human trafficking, which is heavily tied to prostitution. But it applies in all cases, even if a service member visits a legal brothel, regardless of local domestic or foreign law, said Pentagon spokeswoman Air Force Lt. Col. Ellen Krenke.

Officials said they are clamping down on prostitution because it is the main fuel for the human trafficking industry — the illegal practice of procuring human beings for unpaid work in physically abusive settings and locations and forcing them to stay there. Most women involved in prostitution are doing so against their will. Even by simply patronizing a strip club or bar that allows prostitution, individuals are supporting the worldwide human trafficking industry, officials said. The law signed by Bush requires the Defense Department to incorporate anti-trafficking and protection measures in areas following armed conflicts and during humanitarian emergencies, especially for women and children.

Full article at http://www.armytimes.com/story.php?f=1-292925-1488490.php
January 26, 2006 National Review
The New Abolitionist Movement - The Feminist View
Donna Hughes on progress fighting sex trafficking.

Highlights of huge article of her comments on the new sex-trafficking Act which became law in 2006

Most of what people see as prostitution is actually trafficking because it involves force, fraud, and coercion or underage girls. Pimps are vicious, violent criminals who tightly and brutally control their victims to the point they are enslaved. And most prostitution is pimp controlled. The independent call-girl/hooker is mostly a myth. You can get a rough idea of how much sex trafficking — foreign and domestic — is in your community by looking at the advertisements for massage parlors and other fronts for prostitution. These places are full of trafficking victims.

The Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act (TVPRA) passed was passed unanimously by the House and Senate. President Bush signed it into law on January 10. (Dave notes under this law, trafficking is defined as ALL commercial sex including private adult consenting sexwork)

Title II — Combating Domestic Trafficking in Persons — is ground breaking. Title II started out as the "End Demand for Sex Trafficking Act" (HR 2012-S 937). It addresses the victimization of U.S. citizen women and girls by pimps in the U.S. It is a funding bill that provides incentives to local and state agencies to enforce existing laws against pimps and "johns," the men who purchase sex acts. These perpetrators make up what is referred to as "the demand." 'Johns" create a demand for victims of sex trafficking by seeking out and purchasing sex acts, and pimps or domestic traffickers create a demand for victims by making enormous illegal profits from coercing victims into performing sex acts. In most cities, pimps make up less than one percent of all prostitution-related arrests. The low arrest rate creates a favorable climate in which pimps recruit victims and profit from their victimization. Consider the amount of money a pimp is making if he controls just two or three girls and forces them through beatings to make $500 to $800 a night — every night.

Title II provides funding for services for women and girls to assist them to get out of prostitution. We know from research that 90 percent of women in prostitution say they want out, but there are limited services available and often little sympathy for victims trapped in the sex trade. For too long prostitution has been a low priority or considered a victimless crime. At most, it was viewed as a nuisance crime. Officials ignored the damage that pimps and traffickers were doing to individual women and girls and to the whole community by allowing the illegal sex industry to operate openly. Over the last decade an entire culture has emerged that glamorizes the brutality of pimps. Rap musicians and media glamorized pimping and clubs held Pimp and Ho parties, where young couples dressed up and pretended to be pimps and prostitutes. Even the mainstream media ran stories of the new independent women who made money by selling sex.

At the signing ceremony earlier this month, President Bush specifically mentioned "the demand" in his speech — and received a round of applause when he condemned it. To have a law that addresses the demand for victims and have the president address it is a fulfillment of the goals of my work.

How important has the president been in this fight?
President Bush has been the crucial factor. He has created a political climate in which all of us, from local activists to high-ranking political appointees, could do this work. Mainstream feminists like to say he's anti-woman, but by supporting the abolitionist work against the global sex trade, he has done more for women and girls than any one other president I can think of. And he seems to have done it because it's the right thing to do, not because of pressure or favoritism. The new law and policy will literally initiate change for millions of women and girls around the world. Years from now, when the anti-Bush hysteria has died away, I believe he will be recognized as a true advocate for women's freedom and human rights.

The mainstream media has ignored this story. Most of the coverage has come from the conservative press as a result of faith-based groups' involvement in coalition efforts to support the new law and policy. I believe it is a result of the liberal media dislike of the Bush administration and the lack of mainstream feminist groups' acknowledgement of Bush's efforts to fight sex trafficking. Most mainstream journalists don't search out the facts, and instead accept the stereotypes and anti-Bush propaganda. When I speak favorably of what the Bush administration has done to support the anti-trafficking movement, people are often shocked because it isn't consistent with their view of President Bush or the Bush administration. Hopefully, history will set the record straight.

Attorney General Alberto Gonzales is overseeing a nation-wide crackdown on prostitution and child-pornography rings. Almost every day there's news of another bust of a pimp or prostitution ring by federal agents. Federal law-enforcement agents, including those in homeland security, are working closely with state and local police on trafficking in an almost unprecedented way. He has made prosecution of obscenity a priority, and I believe we are soon going to see the connection between the production of pornography and trafficking very soon.

Then there are the powerful faith based groups — the Salvation Army and the Southern Baptists, in particular. Conservatives groups, such as Concerned Women for America, are among the leaders.

I've spent about 17 years working on this issue — most of that time I was on the losing side, as those who supported "sex worker" rights won almost every political battle. The mainstream feminist groups wanted to allow women to make the "choice" to be prostitutes and only oppose "forced prostitution." The Clinton administration funded and supported this approach. I thought we had lost. Those were the depressing years. During the late 1990s, almost all the media stories were about how empowering prostitution was, how much money the women made, how pimps were disappearing, how women were independent businesswomen, and how women in India were forming unions and collectives to fight for their rights as sex workers. The utopian vision that prostitution could be turned into a form of legitimate work for women by empowering victims and organizing unions ruled in all U.N. meetings, feminist conferences, and a number of government offices. Now that was depressing!

Slowly that is changing. Media stories are increasingly describing prostitution rings in which women and girls are beaten, raped, and enslaved. That may sound more depressing, but to me it is much better because it's the truth. I used to hear stories like that all the time from victims, but they never made it into media stories or congressional testimonies. Now, the truth about prostitution/sex trafficking is emerging and agencies are responding as never before. I think more pimps and traffickers have been arrested in the last year than in the whole previous decade.

I got involved in the anti-sex trafficking movement as an outgrowth of my involvement in the anti-rape movement in the 1980s. To me it was obvious that this was a form of violence against women and a women's-rights issue. It came as a complete shock to me that some women, calling themselves feminists, were pro-pornography and pro-prostitution, or called it a choice. It has been tremendously gratifying to me to work with a broad based coalition on this issue. Although we come from different political views, we base our work on principles of dignity, freedom, and human rights. By getting down to basics, we've formed a movement that is going to liberate thousands of women and girls in the U.S. and millions of women abroad. That makes me feel good.

Full article at http://www.nationalreview.com/interrogatory/lopez200601260824.asp

Update on New Federal Anti Consenting Adult sexwork law:
Repressive Commercial Sex Law Trafficking Victims Protection Act Re-Authorization Bill H.R.972 which Bush signed
Comments Compiled by Prostitutes' Education Network
Human Rights Organizations Recently Protested Bush Administration's Anti-Prostitution Policy
Those committed to truly progressive, rights based approaches to social issues should question and examine the alliances forged around prostitution prohibition. 200 human rights organizations organized to protest one of the most insidious policies of the Bush Administration, which was also based on abolitionist principles. The administration would deny social service funds for HIV services to organizations which did not go along with a strict anti-prostitution policy. Human rights groups expressed alarm at this agenda.

HR 972 Equates Voluntary Prostitution with Slavery
New provisions against voluntary commercial sex acts conflate concerns about slavery and abuse of workers with a moral agenda against prostitution. This ideology attempts to equate voluntary participation in the sex industry with rape. Most people understand the difference, but ordinary sexual negativity in our culture leads to confusion. Educated, frank discussions about sexual practices are rare and the discourse is extremely unsophisticated. Sensationalist stories and jargon about innocent women's vulnerability at the hands of nasty men are a mainstay of prohibitionist campaigns from alcohol temperance to antiporn campaigns.

Developing an Industry Around Sexual Surveillance
The greatest share of the funds goes to developing an industry around sexual surveillance. Although Americans are sympathetic to the plight of prostitutes who are victimized, and we support funding to provide housing and training for those with few options, most object to funding an industry to develop police surveillance, shaming programs and to monitor consensual sexual activities. This is a highly problematic use of government funds and should certainly not should be within the domain of federal law enforcement.

BBC Quits HIV-Prevention Campaign Over USAID Policy Requiring Pledge Against Commercial Sex Work
The BBC World Service Trust decided to suspend an HIV-prevention campaign rather than comply with a U.S. policy requiring that recipients of U.S. HIV/AIDS service grants pledge to oppose commercial sex work.

The Bush administration in June 2005 notified U.S. organizations providing HIV/AIDS-related services in other countries that they must sign a pledge opposing commercial sex work and sex trafficking to be considered for federal funding. The policy stems from two 2003 laws, including an amendment to legislation (HR 1298) authorizing the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, that prohibit funds from going to any group or organization that does not have a policy "explicitly opposing prostitution and sex trafficking"
(Source London's Guardian 1/23/06)

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