For those of you that have been wondering what my academic writing was once like, and in case anyone saw a recent facebook post of mine and was intrigued by the title of one of my found essays, here is something I found this evening in a box of old papers and college stuff (Its from a philosophy class....)
"It's Hard out Here for a Pimp"
(But It's Even Harder for a Prostitute)
So many different individuals and organizations openly bash the practice of prostitution and the activities that take place involving prostitution. It is awfully hard to find people who are openly for prostitution and its forthcomings. Why? Is prostitution as morally wrong as we are lead to believe? The allegation that prostitution is is immoral can be found by looking into the principle theories of Kant and the teachings of the Bible. As we will find, these two sources go along with each other hand in hand, along with some shocking facts about the horrors of the occupation known as prostitution.
Use your imagination and picture a beautiful woman standing on the next street corner. She has a stunningly beautiful frame, and has somehow managed to squeeze herself into a skin tight outfit that proves to be very enticing for her potential clients. Any random man (or woman, for that matter) could approach her at any given moment and offer to purchase a slice of her time and a plethora of her skills. Looking at this objectively, it seems quite innocent. It seems to be no more offensive than a professional athlete, displaying their superior athletic skills in front of thousands of fans for a specified amount of time. But prostitution is different. Prostitution is, obviously, someone who engages "in sexual intercourse or performs other sex acts in exchange for money," as defined by the English Encarta Dictionary. If one were to delve into Immanuel Kant's piece, entitled The Moral Law, they would see that his 'Second Formulation of the Categorical Imperative" could easily be applied to the topic of selling one's body and sexual abilities. In Kant's "Categorical Imperative," he clearly states that using other human beings as a means to an end, not an end in itself, is most definitely morally wrong (Kant 314)." ...rational beings... are called persons, because their very nature points them out as ends in themselves, that is as something which must not be used merely as means, and so far therefore restricts freedom of action (and is an object of respect)," writes Kant in regards to respect and proper treatment of fellow human beings. As stated, this is unconditional, and is applied to all forms of bodily practices and trade, even if safe sex is practiced and the prostitute and his or her client partake in such activities on their own will. Thes two factors are completely disregarded in Kantian theory because these two people are still partaking in prostitution only as a form of using each other as means to their own ends. As I understand Kant's text, prostitution is merely the use of someone as a way to satisfy sexual urges and financial needs (if you are to examine the other end of the spectrum), and selling sexual favors does not treat the people involved as their absolute worth would ascribe.
Of course, as any God fearing Christian would agree, the Bible teaches many millions of people what to practice and accept as their moral codes. And according to the Bilbe, prostitution is a dreadfully bad thing. "The body is not meant for sexual immorality, but for the Lord... Shall I then take the members of Christ and unite them with a prostitute? Never! ... one who unites himself with a prostitute is one with her in body... For it is said, The two will become one flesh." This text was found in I Corinthians, 6:13-20 (Lansdown). Kant would agree with this in a different context in his short essay entitled "On the Place of Sex in Human Existence." In the introduction to this piece, the editor sums up Kant, saying, "...the trick is to conbine this personal sexual satisfaction with treating the other with dignity..." Of course, sexual dignity, in Kantian and Biblical terms can only be found within a loving, respecctful relationship between two people- something very rarely, if ever, found within the boundaries of prostitute-client relations.
However, if you do not agree with Kant, or you happen to not see eye to eye with Christianity and the teachings of the bible, prostitution is still a moral no-no. One only has to look at the numbers and statistics to understand that prostitution is not a good and morally sound thing to practice. The open practice of disrespect towards the human functions and practices may lead to a different, and usually negative, perspecitive of life for the people involved in this different lifestyle. Who among us hasn't heard the classic headline reading something similar to "string of prostitues brutally murdered and found in plastic bags in convicted man's attic,"? The martality rate for female prostitues was found to be an average of 204 per 100,000 in Colorado Springs several years ago, which, when compared to the job with the next highest rate of homicide, the male taxi driver, is amazingly high. For every 100,000 taxi cab drivers, an average of 29 dies (MacCorquodale). They seem to also be more likely to be targeted by serial killers, as my faux headline above represents. Take the popular historical reference, Jack the Ripper, as a fine example of a serial prostitute killer. This occupational hazard is not only a horrendous discovery, but it also scrapes the surface of morality- something that has such a ahigh incidence of murder and violence surely cannot be something that is absolute and morally correct.
Surely there must be a reason that noteworthy individuals and organizations are so adamantly against prostitution, and I believe we have found just a few reasons why. Prostitution is as morally wrong as we are lead to believe, and we can thank such sources as Immanuel Knat's texts, the Bible, and the findings of current studies for allowing us the knowledge and information to base this statement on. The allegation that prostitutionis immoral is easily found by looking into well known ethical codes and studies.