An issue that raises a large amount of concern among society is the legalization of prostitution. Despite the fact that prostitution is a profession that arguably devalues the human body, many people view it as something that cannot be prevented by law enforcement. As a result, it has been argued that making prostitution legal will lead to better protection of sex workers. Giving structure to the trade may inherently reduce the violence inflicted on people who work as prostitutes and perhaps reduce sex trafficking. However, does changing the legality of prostitution also alter the morality of what’s really happening? Those in favor of keeping prostitution illegal argue that the stigma surrounding prostitution is there for a reason.

After reading several articles detailing the ideas regarding the legalization of prostitution, there were a multitude of valid reasons to legalize prostitution. The first and most prominent argument was that by legalizing prostitution, violence may be significantly reduced. Statistics show that 82% of prostitutes in the San Francisco area had been assaulted and failed to report it to authorities due to the fact that their profession was illegal. That same article also argued that by legalizing prostitution, sex workers would be much safer in terms of sexual health in the event that required condom use and weekly STD tests were implemented.

For every argument validating the legalization of prostitution there are just as many arguments as to why it shouldn’t be legalized.  In a Forbes article detailing the dangers of legalizing prostitution, in comparison to the United States, countries that have legalized prostitution have larger reported cases of human trafficking inflows. Another article argues that sex work is, and always will be, abusive and that the human body should be valued by society, not treated as a commodity. Overall, there are endless reasons as to why legalizing prostitution can both benefit and harm society, and in my opinion, there really isn’t a superior answer to this question. Prostitution will always exist regardless of it’s moral correctness, so the real question remains, do we protect something that isn’t necessarily good for society in hopes that we can protect people involved, or do we continue to abolish this practice in hopes that we can also protect people.

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CC BY-SA 4.0 Should prostitution be legal? by Abby is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

1 Comment
  1. Carlos 2 months ago

    This was one of the most interesting debates in modern society. Prostitution is one of the oldest professions to exist, but has always had the stigma of being an unclean and dirty profession. I wonder what caused you to look deeper into this topic. It is very interesting and how you think this topic affects society. I found a pro and con website on the topic of legalizing prostitution (https://nyln.org/6-principal-pros-and-cons-of-legalizing-prostitution) and it listed many of the reasons you mentioned. This reminded of me a documentary I saw about a large brothel in India. There, the practice is legal. However, the conditions the workers were in seemed just as dirty and unsanitary as working a street corner. I am already very interested in this topic. If you were to add more information of the pros and cons, I will definitely come back and read more.

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