Early Indications of Legalized Prostitution?


Although I’m pretty sure state Democrat Representative Anastasia Williams, of Providence, has introduced this legislation in the past, with the possible legalization of marijuana this year, it’s worth mentioning.  As Ian Donnis reports for the Public’s Radio:

A Rhode Island lawmaker believes the state’s laws governing sex work are too punitive and she wants to create a 12-member commission to review possible changes. …

According to a bill introduced by Williams, H5354, “Criminalization of prostitution disproportionately impacts women, transgender individuals and people of color.” Her legislation points to findings showing that decriminalizing prostitution can improve public safety and public health.

If Williams’ envisioned legislative commission moves ahead, it would face a February 2020 deadline for reporting its findings.

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As I’ve noted repeatedly, there’s a reason Pottersville — the alternate reality in It’s a Wonderful Life in which the movie’s hero had never been born — combines drugs, gambling, and prostitution.  As I’ve also suggested before, it would be one thing to arrive at this state of affairs because our culture and our respect for liberty had become stronger, because then it would have implicit safeguards for individuals and the community as a whole.

As it is, we’re seeing the government move into areas that used to be the province of organized crime, largely for the same reasons: money and power.

  • Rhett Hardwick

    I have often thought we would benefit from separating prostitution from crime. Making them criminals forces them to consort with criminals. On the other hand, I wonder if your everyday street walker isn’t already involved with criminals before moving to prostitution. Some years ago I was directed by an article in the journal to a website for “whore mongers” (the site name is long since forgotten) . I think of myself as pretty jaded, but I was amazed by many of the posts.

    • Rhett Hardwick

      It was a pretty big site, with forums for most cities. I only looked at Providence. Told what streets to be on, times that police patrolled, women’s names, teeth green from drugs, amazing stuff. As I recall, drugs played a big part.

  • BasicCaruso

    Yes, in the bizarro world or the religious right, getting the government out of the business of policing the activities of consenting adults is a “big government” power grab. One wonders at the impressive mental gymnastics required to reach such conclusions.

    Thankfully the state derives no money or power from the criminalization and incarceration of sex workers, drug users, etc. *ahem, cough*

    • Raymond Carter

      Drug laws, prohibition, prostitution laws, etc. are all products of the progressive movement.
      Bet your idiot professors didn’t teach you that.

      • BasicCaruso

        Lol, didn’t come up in my differential equations class.

      • Mike678

        As a libertarian, I am in favor of people doing what they want to do as long as their actions do not negatively affect others. Personal responsibility, if you will. If you want to ride a motorcycle without proper protection, that is your right. That said, you better have really good self-paid medical policy as others should not have to pay for your actions.

        Progressives are not libertarians. They live to tell you what you should/can do, and embrace anything they can tax…and then hand you the bill for others irresponsibility. “Pander for power” should be their mantra.

    • Mike678

      Ahem. How, pray tell, does “legalizing” prostitution get the govt out of policing the activities of consenting adults? Will not the govt have to monitor, as does Amsterdam, the health and safety of said workers? And, no doubt, tax said activities to pay the monitors?