Stigma can have a very negative ripple effect as it destroys sex workers lives if outed and those of the ones close to them. It can take a mental toll on one's life and if one is not strong enough it can eventually break them. These breakdowns can manifest themselves in many different ways. The problem here is that the general public only likes to focus on the one mental breakdown they like to exploit the most when stereotyping who the 'typical' sex worker is. This being the stigmatizing notion of a "drug addict whore" just looking for their next fix. This harmful depiction has its roots in prejudices against drug users, sex workers and people who do both.
Most people today working in the sex trade are a lot more savvy and intelligent than most perceive them to be. People in the sex business have honed their skills in marketing and many other areas as the internet has grown over the last 20 years. One would think with all these advancements stigma against the business of sex would not be such a determining factor in prostitution laws and legislation." Yet we can see that it still is. How can stigma still impact so greatly when sex is used to sell damn near everything in one way shape or form? Sexuality is prominent in the music and entertainment industry and perfectly acceptable to be used for profiteering purposes there. Many American sporting events have cheerleaders and they are always the highlight- looked at as sex objects and always dressed to accentuate their sexuality. Almost all companies that sell products that can find a way to use sex to sell their product will.
Knowing and seeing all this today, how women are objectified, and I am by no means knocking it, as well as men and all for a profit, then why the hell can we not become and market our own business that is ourselves with no middle man and only to adults and be in control of all we do ourselves?
Stigma and the non separation of church and state is why. This country, in my opinion, is over-sexed already so where the hell do people get off trying to have control over how one person can profit off themselves without harming anyone in the process. This is not a new argument, but one that has brought itself to the actual floor of the White House correspondents dinner by Cecily Strong. She was invited to speak and I loved that she spoke out in her own way, even if without knowing or intending to, for sex workers. She did so with her off hand joke about the government trying to tell us what to do with our bodies. Imagine that! I'm stuck on how I feel about her prostitutes and secret service joke. It seems like all comedians want to make jokes at our expense.
I would like to bring to light how stigma destroys lives in ways people do not see or do not want to see or speak about. The “drugged out whore” stereotype is only the result of this system stigmatizing and destroying happy families, making poor marginalized groups the statistics and stereotypes they want to use as examples. After this system tears families apart, all that's left then turns to drugs to numb the pain. Pain of knowing your children are now going through the horrible things you were trying to protect them from in the first place when you chose this profession. Now you have to numb the pain that comes with knowing the abuse they are enduring and not being able to do anything about it. What's worse is when the children are made victims even worse and can fall down that same path of addiction. Basically stigma has a very negative ripple effect.
The problem with this system in this country is that the system is the true abuser. They are in control and pick who to victimize and the poor marginalized groups suffer first. Our true exploiters is the legal system in this country. They exploit the poor and underprivileged. I do wonder where the middle class in this country has gone. At the same time I'm conflicted in how I feel about living in a system with classes at all and all the discrimination that comes with it. I am not privileged to be a worldly person. I do know that there are countries with no classes where everyone is treated equal. I wonder how bad that can be, but I know I will never know so fuck it right?
The sex trade is for people who truly are ready to own what they are doing. I feel if one can not be truthful of what one does then why do it. The true problem lies in the fact that the shame is there at all. Why should it even exist? When a person is told they are less than anyone else because they choose to be in the sex trade that is the same as bullying. Sexuality is not a thing of shame but of beauty and pleasure. There is no room for stigma and shame. How dare anyone try to shame a true act of love no matter how expressed. Even if love just for the moment. With a line being drawn at inappropriate or abusive.
Stigma sets out to make a person feel like they have no worth so how can something so horrible be attached to such a beautiful expression of humanity. Are we not at our most human when enthralled in the most carnal pleasures of being human? Do we not express ourselves to our fullest potential as humans through our sexuality? What we really need to address in my opinion is policy change or as I see it do away with the laws pertaining to prostitution and allow the workers themselves to decide what is best for them. OUR BODIES OUR CHOICE IN ALL ASPECTS OF OUR LIVES. I just think if this globe is 50/50 on prostitution it should be up to the people to decide whether or not it should be a crime. I know I do not agree with special ID' s for workers but I think for safe working spaces we should be able to have vendor licenses like all other businesses get so that people know they can be assured total safety and professionalism in all encounters. It's like the verifed seal on all those hook up sites. We all know the escorts are scattered throughout these sites so why the stigma really? Shouldn't 'majority rule'? If we choose to file and contribute to our own retirement why should anyone stand in our way and block us? It's not as if this government’s Medicare really gets our aging loved ones the care they need. We must be able to secure a livable retirement at whatever cost and have no one stand in our way. It is our fundamental human right. After all what is income tax really but the government being the biggest pimp of all.