Legalize Prostitution in America

Just how free are we really in America? Of course, there are valid reasons that make it essential to place limitations on freedom to avoid pervasive chaos. However, is forbidding prostitution a truly necessary limitation on our liberty that we need, or is prohibiting prostitution more about moral and religious values of the majority of Americans being imposed on everyone? Now, I’m sure that there will be many people who are not willing to even entertain the idea of legalizing prostitution in America. Although you may not want to become a prostitute, why would you prevent other people who would like to make money from engaging in sexual intercourse with others from seeking this form of self-employment?

What’s really so illegal about prostitution? While many people will argue and have argued that prostitution is immoral, I contend that the real reason why the government has outlawed prostitution is the difficulty with trying to collect taxes off of money earned through sexual intercourse. If this is the dominant reason behind why prostitution is illegal to engage in, then why don’t we just legalize it and require prostitutes to report their earnings? This will stimulate the economy (and stimulate other things), generate significant tax revenue, and help to give the unemployed an additional legal profession to enter. We could help so many prostitutes to come out of the shadows and be substantially integrated into the center of American life. I assert that many more prostitutes will do a better job of protecting themselves if we would legalize prostitution. Prostitutes would not have to meet their clients in unsafe places if we legalized prostitution.

If you don’t like the products and services offered by a company or entrepreneur, you have the freedom in America to go to seek those products and services elsewhere. For those who have no interest in pursuing what a prostitute is offering, then they simply will not purchase any services from prostitutes. However, for those who would like to purchase the services of a prostitute, then they should be allowed to legally make this purchase.

We are unnecessarily denying people the legal right to pursue prostitution as their means of earning an earnest living.

By legalizing prostitution, we can enable the oldest profession to become much more professional. Prostitutes could purchase offices and buildings to conduct their services—just as any other legitimate entrepreneur is currently able to do.

For all of you self-righteous people out there, how many of you have had unprotected sex with someone you just met? How many of you have had one-night stands? Be honest. You engaged in just as risky sexual behavior (maybe even more so) as a prostitute does. What makes you any different than the prostitutes? Exactly. You got screwed and they got paid. Now, you’re mad.

I have personal problems with prostitution. However, I don’t want my personal problems with prostitution to bar others from being able to be prostitutes. Let’s begin to examine how we can increase liberty in America, even when increasing certain liberties would not necessarily comport with our personal moral and religious values.

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison


  1. Right on! Removing the stigma from prostitution will help heighten the awareness of sexually transmitted diseases, provide protection for the women (and men) that subject themselves to the criminally deviant population and continue to remove the mask from a sexually oppressive culture.

    1. I agree very much with you. Many of the things that we declare to be illegal actually end up having a more negative impact on America than if we would legalize them. Thanks very much for reading and your response!

  2. I would think they are other things we can legalize or rid our justice system of. I’m not sure how prominent prostitution in and how it can really stimulate the economy. Maybe because it’s such a “Black market” I can’t really see the economics in it.

    1. A significant number of Americans engage in prostitution even when they don’t call it prostitution. Even more would engage in it if we would remove she shame that is attached to it. It’s already stimulating the economy–the state governments and federal government is simply missing out on an opportunity to collect taxes on this business. Yeah, there are other things that we should consider to help to end the phenomenon of the supermax prison and to improve our overused criminal justice system. In those things that you are contemplating that we might legalize, I just have to believe that it’s still going to take a greater willingness to stop imposing society’s dominant values on everyone when our civil society still can be maintained with the legalization of phenomena that don’t comport with society’s dominant values. Thanks for reading and your response.

  3. From a hookers POV, I’d prefer it just be decriminalized while keeping the laws against coercion and underage prostitution. I’d like to see a private organization made of prostitutes ‘regulating’ the industry as opposed to political prostitutes trying to legislate and govern something they know nothing about. Say something similar to how AMA regulates the physicians or the bar association regulates the lawyers. Even though prostitute may be an occupation, the individuals are still human and as such have the basic rights to life, liberty, and property and we do not deny others their right to life, liberty, and property. Therefore it should not be a criminal offense.


  4. If you read academic studies here in the UK, you discover pretty quickly that the bulk of sex workers do not engage in unsafe sex. Sex work is taxable here in the UK.

    Another considerable advantage of decriminalisation would be the freeing up of criminal justice resources to tackle other crime, rather than devoting significant resources to an endless battle against a social phenomenon. Human nature isn’t perfect. Get on with it!

    Furthermore, there are significant public health benefits to be gained from knowing where sex workers are, rather than scattering them to the four winds through clampdowns.

    Decriminalisation also allows sex workers and their clients to report crimes against them to the authorities without fear of prosecution.

    1. Thanks for your excellent insights. I agree very much with the ideas expressed in your response. We need more people like you who are not afraid to contribute to this discussion and offer powerful insights and ideas as you have. Thanks for stopping by, for reading, and your response.

    2. I agree. Americans have no sense sometimes. Our government is more concerned about the “message” they would send that if prostitution were decriminalized or legalized then we are telling our children it’s ok to be a hooker. In the meantime, women are dying at the hands of serial killers, raped, and forced to do demeaning acts due to the illegality of the system and the fear to seek out protection.

      Americans wonder how we can tax the gains of prostitution (because they just know that hookers won’t report their income *sarcasm there*). You tax it like any other self employed person, be they masseuse, baby sitter, personal chef. And if escorts ever want to buy anything to improve their lot, say a nice house or a nice car, 9 times out of 10 you have to show proof of income. How do you do that? By showing your tax returns meaning you have to file your taxes.

      Aside from a persons personal moral issues, there are more practical arguments for it rather than against it. But Lord forbid if America condones it by allowing it (more sarcasm here).

      1. Very true. I strongly agree with the following comment you make: “Aside from a person’s personal moral issues, there are more practical arguments for it rather than against it.” Legalizing or decriminalizing prostitution makes the majority of Americans uncomfortable. However, they have to understand that freedom is not always a comfortable phenomenon.

    3. Sorry, late to the party : )

      First off, I don’t like the term “sex industry” or “sex worker”. In fact many females get really turned off by that & therefore stay hidden when they could essentially become really great escorts.

      I’m an advocate of the escort industry & have been working in it since 1989. Escorts, in my opinion, don’t provide sex as their means of service although sex may be part of the entire package.

      I know very little about hookers both on & offline, so I can’t comment on that.

      I also don’t like the word “prostitution”, but the label is here to stay & clearly isn’t going anywhere.

      It’s not just about fear of reporting a crime, when someone in the escort industry does report a crime, most times the cops just laugh & snicker.

      There was a string of robberies in escort agencies in the Toronto area several years ago & guns were involved.

      One of the owners of my previous escort agency told me he reported it & the cops wouldn’t do a thing & he was even pistol wiped.

      Like you said, most escorts will not report rape & good luck winning the case if she does. A few have reported it & I applaud them.

      It wasn’t too long ago that any woman raped who had been dressed in a sexy fashion or had been flirting with a guy was told she had it coming to her. So in most people’s minds (unless they full understand & respected escorts), clearly this would be way up there in the “you had it coming” category.

      People’s twisted views of sexuality really harm our society.

      Thank you for this nice thread : )

      Exotic Publishing

      1. No one deserves to be raped, no matter what profession the person is in. The terms used in the article are the current terms available. Until someone develops alternative terms, those are the ones people will continue to use. I very much appreciate you for reading and sharing your insights.

      2. “There was a string of robberies in escort agencies in the Toronto area several years ago. One of the owners of my previous escort agency told me he reported it & the cops wouldn’t do a thing.”
        Wow. That sounds terrible. I little while ago, I watched a documentary about prostitution in the Middle Ages. Even in these totally backward times, prostitutes who worked in brothels had certain workers’ rights and the brothel owners had certain duties to take care of the women. For example, if a prostitute got pregnant, the brothel owner wasn’t allowed to kick her out. He had to care for her until she gave birth. Prostitutes who worked in the street, however, weren’t that lucky. They were declared outlaws.
        The documentary also reported on a court case in which a prostitute sued the brothel owners, because they cheated her out of money and didn’t treat her properly. The judges found in favour of the prostitute. She received her money and the brothel owners were sentenced.
        What I also find interesting is that during the Middle Ages the church tolerated prostitution as a necessary evil. Actually, priests and monks were the most loyal guests of brothels. Besides, it was common that fathers took their teenage boys (approx. at the age of 14) to a brothel, so that prostitutes can teach the inexperienced male youth how sex works. Crazy, huh? In case you are interested and speak German, you can watch the documentary on YouTube:

        “I also don’t like the word ‘prostitution’, but the label is here to stay & clearly isn’t going anywhere.”
        In Germany, the official terms are “Prostitution” and “Prostituierte” (prostitute). These are neutral words. I don’t see any reason why they should be replaced. Nevertheless, I increasingly see and hear the term “Sexarbeiter” (sex worker) used. Damn language imperialism.

      3. I can’t see a “reply” button above Dorothea’s post.

        Oh I would have liked to watch that docu, but I don’t speak German : ( LOL

        Yes, that’s what amazes me, is that this industry was totally accepted back when society was “supposedly” less civilized.

        Thanks for the info : )

        Exotic Publishing

  5. I agree indoor prostitution should be decriminalized, not legalized as there is a HUGE difference.,_wealthiest,_most_educated_women_of_their_time

    Once you do a bit of reading what you find out is that back in the 19th century, marriage WAS SLAVERY. Women were not allowed to leave home till they married and marriage was a BUSINESS. Women were not allowed to go in public alone, nor work or vote and if they inherited property it became their husbands and the husband was FREE to beat and rape his wife.
    In 1910 we created the MANN ACT (the white slavery act) that was suppose to be to stop Human Trafficking, yet the real reason was to stop white women from fraternizing with black men. The Mann Act also gave CONGRESS its power and formed the FBI.
    Our federal law states that each state has the right NOT make its own prostitution laws and in order to be charged with the Mann act one would have to exploit another person into prostitution and cross state lines. This was the way the Fed’s are suppose to intervene.
    Yet in 2010 the FBI spend a 800,000 grant in just 3 days supposedly to do a 3 day nationwide child prostitution sting. After arresting 884 people, we had 69 TEEN RUNAWAYS, along with their 99 pimps boyfriends and also caught up in the mix were over 700 adults looking to meet with another consenting adult in private. During this sting, more middle aged people were arrested than THE TEENS THEY WANTED TO RESCUE.
    Now we have Bill hr 5575 gong to congress which is to ask for hundreds of millions for services for these TEEN victims and the bill clearly states that any women over the age of 20 would NOT be eligible for services, and most of the money would be spend training FBI and vice to STALK MIDDLE AGED ESCORTS ONLINE.
    Now every city already has a whole juvenile court, a dept of child services, foster homes, boot camps and reform schools, but the women OVER 20 years of age have NO SERVICES. These people are trying to convince us that these RUNAWAY TEENS ARE VICTIMS and they are really UNGOVERNABLE TEENS that ran off with their boyfriends that exploited them. Are we not suppose to hold these teens accountable for their own behavior, why return them them with no real intervention to just run off again, and why is the parents not being held accountable for the COST OF RESCUING THEIR UNGOVERNABLE TEEN. Why not lock these teens up to protect them from themselves?
    Original prostitution laws were created “to stop a women from showing her wares in public” The media likes to portray all prostitutes as curb crawling drug addicts and yet most are really middle aged single parents desperately trying to escape POVERTY.
    Last year we spend 250 million to arrest 80,000 people for prostitution, that 250 million could have housed 80,000 women and children long term.
    Yet anyone wanting to legalize prostitution wants the women to help pay off the deficit, nobody is even considering creating long term services for women who do want to exit the industry. Or they want these women to be forced to work in brothels where they would have to give half their earnings to the brothel owner, pay rent and then pay taxes and not be able to refuse any clients.
    We are no dumb women, we know how to screen clients, advertise and choice our rates for our time. We not not need to be regulated anymore than any other business does, so why would we place regulations on this industry that is not placed on any other business. Why do we make it our business?
    In Rhode Island, in 1976 a federal laws suit was filed in RI by a women named Mona St.James who later formed the organization COYOTE . The complaint was what right did they state have in the sexual conduct of consenting adults, and also they were only arresting the women and not the men. The case was dismissed by a compromise and indoor prostitution became legal in RI in 1979.
    For 30 years there was never one case of human trafficking, women could work for massage spas or from their homes. There was never one public nuisance complaint in over 30 years (too bad we can’t say that about nightclubs). The police never bothered to go into any spa, and check for ID to make sure the girls were of legal age and in the country legally. Yet they did run front page news articles about how sad it was that one could buy sex a block from city hall. These businesses were licensed and paid taxes and they even donated money to the state police and other local charities and the women spend their money in the other local businesses.
    In 2009 the Craigslist killer, killed a girl in Boston and then went to RI and robbed a escort and he was CAUGHT because the escort dialed 911 as she had PROTECTION UNDER THE LAW.
    Then in Nov 2009 they criminalize indoor prostitution (putting all the women in the state in harms way) as they claimed they could not investigate human trafficking without criminalizing us.
    Ironically the police go in to strip clubs all the time and do ID checks and ask the girls if they are OK but for some reason they insisted this would not work in RI.
    Now we have 10 women who have murdered in Long Island and even though they knew at least 5 of these girls were online escorts, the cops told the media that serial killers rarely murder hookers, one man on Long Island reported the women coming to door asking for help and when he told her he was calling the cops to help her, she ran off and has never been seen again. The man reported this in May 2010 and it took till Aug 2010 for them to follow up, and even a CNN reported wants to know if a prompt investigation was not done because after all these girls were JUST HOOKERS. is a place dedicated to THE SAFETY & PROTECTION of escorts, we are trying to find services for women WHO do want to exit the industry and we are also trying to create new laws to protect sex workers and stop the discrimination against them.
    Some cites want to create JOHN school so the men can walk away within criminal record. Even if a women has a 20 year old prostitution conviction, she can never get a job, or even rent an apartment.
    Law enforcement is in the news weekly, for exploiting these TEENS themselves, or for abusing hookers and some of these women are even raped and beaten while in custody just because they are prostitutes.
    To go a step further we ENCOURAGE society to hate these women with the “they get what they deserve attitude”. The cops brag to the media that they will continue to run these women from there communities. Do we really think these women would be better off or an safer living in the streets?
    Since they criminalize all the women in RI, the homeless rate for women in RI has increased 20% so far this year and the shelters are FULL.
    Now lets look at MORALS. It is legal and even sociably acceptable for a women to pick up a strange man in a nightclub, bring him he and have unprotected sex with him, while her small children are in the home. Men are now reporting that most women give it up by the 3rd date.
    Then we have the REAL HATERS that say they do NOT want it in their neighborhoods, while I agree with no allowing BROTHELS or Spa’s In a residential neighborhood, but wha about the independent escort. If you can have sex with whoever in your home, why can’t I, and we seem to only have issues with sex WHEN ITS NOT FREE.
    A Canadian judge ruled last year “that no public nuisance equals allowing women to be murdered” of course its ow in appeals court and they are trying to stop the sex workers from being able to testify in court.
    Then lets look at how the cops investigate these women, they use SWAT TEAMS to kick in the doors or these women homes, and then issue them a summons to appear, and some of these women are held on bonds as high as 20,000 even though they have not been charged with a felony.
    Sex workers are always court ordered for STD testing but the MEN/CLIENTS are not, even though they are the ones with the riskiest behaviors and even though our own heath dept studies show that “hookers have less std’s than the general public does and this is also true in Canada and these facts were presented to RI politicians by a Canadian Dr.
    NY has created a law that ANYONE CAN BE ARRESTED FOR CARRYING CONDOMS, that is not the way to promote safe sex, I think law enforcement WHO is swore to PROTECT & SERVE should be out handing out condoms to the street girls to help protect them and the public.
    Now lets look a the Human Trafficking adovactes that have bene collecting donations for the fight against human trafficking for years, the provide no services to the victims; instead the spend the money touring the country, like a politcan, lying to the media about how many teens are being exploited. These groupd are anit prostition groups in disguise and are the one PUTTING OUR YOUTH & WOMEN AT RISK by RWEFUSING US the same SANCTION & PROTECTION under the law given to all other citizens. Now if this is really about human trafficking, then why when they find a midlde aged escort do they arrest her?
    If we decriminalize and make these women pay for a year license which would go to the heath dept so these women would have access to Health care, the women could pay taxes into state, federal and social security and even unemployment, but part of their taxes would go directly for services for women WHO want to exit the adult industry.
    I always want to ask one of these DO GOODERS that if they were cold enough and hungry enough don’t they think they would turn a trick for a blanket and burger, so why be so JUDGMENTAL about SEX.

    1. Wow! Thanks for the tremendously valuable contribution you have provided for this discourse. You have offered much that will educate many people. I love how you point out the difference between decriminalization and legalization. Thanks for your significant contribution, for reading, and stopping by. I agree very much with many of your ideas and arguments in your response.

  6. I am a 27-year-old feminist from Germany. Here are my reasons for why prostitution must be legal in the USA.

    Prostitution consists of two things: 1) having consensual sex, and 2) demanding money in exchange for a service. Both things are legal in the USA. Therefore, when you combine them, it must be legal, too. “Legal” plus “legal” cannot equal “illegal”.
    Whether you legalize prostitution or not, it exists anyway. And in this case, it’s better to allow it, because only then you can regulate it. And regulations are absolutely necessary to combat exploitation. Workers who don’t have any rights are much easier to exploit, because they have no legal claim to proper payment and proper working conditions, e.g. a clean and safe workplace. Therefore, even if you can’t make yourself accept prostitution as a useful service, you should at the very least tolerate it as necessary evil.
    Prostitute is a service occupation. That’s why prostitutes deserve the same respect and the same rights as all other working people. It’s a matter of equal rights. Isn’t the USA supposed to be big on equal rights? Apparently, that’s just empty words.
    Another thing: Most prostitutes are women. Therefore, prostitutes’ rights are not just workers’ rights but also women’s rights. And as a feminist I am all for women’s rights. A woman’s body is her property. That’s why she deserves the right or the freedom to do with it whatever she wants. And this includes things like having abortions and having consensual sex for free or for money … however she likes. Also, people have a right to sexual self-determination. So clearly, there’s a lack of freedom in the self-proclaimed “land of the free”.
    Some people oppose prostitution because of the objectification of women. I can somehow understand that. However, have you ever watched TV or looked at a magazine? The way that women are depicted there contributes much more to their objectification than prostitution. Therefore, if you want to fight the objectification of women, then you should do that by reprimanding the media and not by taking away workers’ rights. Furthermore, legalizing prostitution will make it less visible, because prostitutes would work in brothels instead of trolling the streets. Also, men objectify women anyway. So why not allow women to benefit from the situation and make money with it? I think that men who oppose prostitution are only against it, because they want to save their money and get all the fun for free.
    Legalizing and regulating prostitution will contribute to the health and safety of prostitutes as well as their clients. Prostitutes can be required to undergo mandatory health checks. You can also make the use of condoms mandatory in order to prevent the spreading of STDs. Brothels would serve as a clean and warm workplace. They should also have security personnel to protect the workers from rude clients.
    Some people oppose prostitution because they believe that prostitutes are pressured into sex work. There are indeed many people who do sex work involuntary. However, this has absolutely nothing to do with legalizing prostitution. It is very, very important not to mix up prostitution and forced prostitution. These are two fundamentally different things. You need to distinguish between prostitution and forced prostitution in the same way you differentiate between marriage and forced marriage. The word “prostitution”, just like the word “marriage”, implies consent. Therefore, prostitution must be legal. However, forced prostitution, just like forced marriage, is rightly forbidden. No person with a properly working brain would want to legalize forced prostitution. I think we all agree that it is necessary to fight non-consensual acts. However, you don’t reduce non-consensual acts by criminalizing consensual acts. Forbidding prostitution to fight forced prostitution would be like forbidding sex entirely in order to prevent rape. That’s moronic. Instead of arresting people for having consensual sex, US law enforcement officials should concentrate on prosecuting actual criminals, you know, the kind of people who really do harm.
    Now, you may say you can’t imagine that a person would do sex work voluntarily. Well, whether you can imagine it or not is totally irrelevant. There are a lot of professions whose appeal I don’t understand. For example, I don’t get why someone would want to work as a surgeon and open people’s bodies and mess about with their organs and bones and there’s also all the blood. So, does that mean that being a surgeon should be illegal just because I am unable to understand why other people want to pursue this profession? Clearly not. Also, you might as well say, “I don’t understand why other people believe in god. Therefore, let’s forbid religion.” or “I don’t understand why other people are attracted to the same sex. So, let’s forbid homosexuality.” The thing is that mankind is diverse. People have different feelings, views, and abilities. You need to acknowledge this fact and allow other people to live their lives the way they want. And what does it bother you if other people engage in consensual activities? I myself have pretty conservative views, e.g. I really dislike the idea of having sex without love. However, unlike actual conservatives, I would never want to impose my personal lifestyle, likes or dislikes on the rest of the nation. It is not okay to dictate other people’s lives. Subjective views must be irrelevant when it comes to legislation. When making law you need to be objective, realistic, and rational. You have to take the interests of all people into account, not just your own. And objectively, there’s absolutely nothing that speaks against legalizing prostitution.
    Some people oppose prostitution because they consider it immoral. However, moral values are subjective and must hence be ignored in the law-making process. Legislation requires objectivity. Therefore, it is sometimes necessary to vote contrary to your own moral values for the sake of justice.

    1. I love it when I read smart material from people, ESPECIALLY when they don’t agree with a subject matter & still support it.

      Kudos to you.


  7. I hate this damn country. It is so fucking paternalistic. The police gets involved if you curse someone on facebook. The police gets involved if you try to commit suicide. And now they get involved if a low-life like me looking for sexual pleasure from a prostitute because the girls around me are fastidious, insecure cunts who don’t even give me the time of day? The need for sex is NATURAL, and most people who are deprived of it become jealous and resentful. That’s why people say that such people, “need to get laid.” Hello America? Fuck this country. I’ve seen far more restrictions here in the US than I’ve seen in my native South America. Fuck this country.

    1. America is an exceptional nation. Yes, America has her problems but there’s no greater place in the world than this nation. You might want to return to South America if you had a better experience there. I do support a less intrusive and smaller government in America. You should view yourself in a higher regard than a “low life.” I hope you’re able to find the sexual satisfaction you’re longing.

      1. I agree that America is an exceptional nation. I apologize for my rant on America in my previous post. I didn’t really mean to complain about America as a whole, but rather the state of Indiana alone. THAT is where I’ve had bad experiences with stuck-up, snobbish cunts, and here is where I’ve had the police meddling on my own business. I’m pretty sure I would have better experiences in other states like Florida, California, or Nevada where there isn’t the tight conservatism that there is in this shitty state. But moving to another state just isn’t that easy. I still got two damn years of college before I can finally get out.

        As for the low-life label, I’ve had so many bad experiences with so many women that I’ve become a notorious low-life by the great majority of them. Many of them know how deranged I am. So, fuck it. I am what I am. And legalized prostitution would definitely make that ordeal much more bearable because I wouldn’t have to worry about snobbish cunts repelling me all the time.

        So, I take it back. The US IS a great country. Indiana sucks, though.

  8. I know that a lot of men with low self-esteem and poor experiences with women are enraged by prostitution being illegal in the US. I know a guy who solicited services from two prostitutes once, and it didn’t go well. Unfortunately, they ran off with his money and other property behind his back To make matters worse, he couldn’t do anything about it because, if he would have made a report, he could have just as well been arrested for solicitation of prostitution. As you can imagine, he was really pissed off because the law wasn’t on his side either. So, he became a victim of crime as well as the paternalistic character of the law in the US towards prostitution.

    What are some things that we can do, as supporters of decriminalization of prostitution, to turn this around? What advances can we make to spread out among Americans the awareness of this issue and the interest in seeing changes to the current US laws that prohibit prostitution? I have a feeling that prostitution can be decriminalized in more states in this country just as well as marijuana has just recently been decriminalized for recreational use in Colorado and Washington.

    I believe that it is possible to turn these anti-prostitution laws around. I just think we need to think of ways to take action about this. Anybody agree? Anybody have any ideas to work towards this goal?


  9. Ola! Antonio ,
    I take your point, will Gay marriege; legalized Prostitution, Abortion, and Marijuana be wider spread over the country by the end of the century?
    Catch you again soon!
    Proud owner of the most feature rich directory

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