Yes. I’m writing about prostitution.

You have been warned.

Some things I have seen and heard in recent weeks have prompted this little spiel I’m about to write.

Setting aside the specific intricacies of the laws surrounding the legality of prostitution in Canada and the world over, I am having a bit of trouble understanding what all the hubbub is.

To be, it all comes down to bodily autonomy and freedom of choice. If a woman wishes to engage in strings-free sex (in any form) with (typically) a man in exchange for money, then why should the state be getting in the way? Fundamentally, if said woman went into a bar and picked up a man and they went back to her place to engage in strings-free sex with a man just for kicks, not for money, there would be no problem in the state’s eyes.

Why does the inclusion of money in the interaction between two consenting adults muddy the waters?

It shouldn’t be a morality thing. In no way should one person’s morals have any bearing on what other people do. Alas, I feel a lot of the talk about prostitution is centred on morals. Engaging in prostitution, either as the prostitute or as the person buying the sex, is something a lot of people in positions of power either would never do, or (by dint of their position) can’t do and therefore no one should be allowed to.

But there are a lot of things that people either don’t do or can’t do and they don’t begrudge others for doing those things. What makes prostitution so different?

There is also the issue of safe sex. I admit that is a concern, but perhaps no more a concern than in the aforementioned bar situation. People who meet in a bar and have sex are going to have both protected and unprotected sex. In fact, I would hazard that the likelihood they would have unprotected sex is greater than the chances a prostitute would have unprotected sex with her client.

My thinking is, if a woman has chosen to become a prostitute, and this will sound very cold, she will do whatever she can to protect her earning potential. That means she will engage in safe sex to protect against STIs and pregnancy, and get tested regularly.

A woman picking men up at a bar could possibly be drunk at the time (as could the man) and could be lax in her safety protocols. I would reason a prostitute would be a lot more diligent.

Now, throughout this little exercise, I’m sure you’re thinking about those women who are being pimped out.

Let me be clear: My discussion here is based on those women who willingly chose to enter the sex trade.

I am very strongly in favour of personal and bodily autonomy, and I have no time for those people who force others into acts that those other people do not wish to partake in. Prostitutes who are only working as such because they have been trafficked into the sex trade need help. They need to be removed from that world and helped to get back on their feet.

And the pimps and traffickers who put those women in that position need to be dealt with to the fullest extent of the law.

But for those women who have made the choice to sell their bodies and sexual talents, I cannot see what the problem is.

There. I said it.