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jeudi 29 mars 2012
After Ontario Courts rule on Bedford : a rant
DANS LA MEME RUBRIQUE
Burkini Is a Feminist Issue Too
The notion that it’s ok for disabled men to pay for sex is rooted in misogyny and ableism
Egyptian doctor living in Zurich produces educational videos about health and sexuality for the Arab world
Amnesty International and Prostitution : Not in Our Name !
Open letter to rabble.ca - Support Meghan Murphy suffered a misogynist campaign by the sex industry lobby
"Insectual - The Secret of the Black Butterfly", by Barbara Sala
Canada’s New Sex Trade Law
Sharia Law, Apostasy and Secularism
“Harm reduction” is not enough to appropriately analyze prostitution
True Progressives Encourage Women’s Equality, Not Their Prostitution
Sexual mutilations outside Africa : new report and new denial except the Iraqi case
FGM slowing down ? The UN asserts it, the Indonesian case contradicts it
Prostitution, STRASS and the senator - When opacity becomes relevant
Is equating prostitution and rape ‘intolerable violence’ ? Really ?
Obama, Madonna and us
Comparing Sex Buyers and Non-Sex Buyers July 2011 (Boston)
Sex resistance in heterosexual arrangements
Abolitionists of the prostitution system : who we are, what we want !
Women Living Under Muslim Laws Statement on Libya
Prostitution is a Threat to Humanity
Prostitution - Call for Australia’s prostitution laws to be tightened
Violence - An Open Letter from Black Women to SlutWalk Organizers
Nothing that is sexual can be considered criminal : hidden sexual violence in the DSK case
The Truth about Global Sex Slavery – A Book by Lydia Cacho
Why reproductive rights and prostitution are not the same thing : A response to one decriminalization argument
Prostitution - The abolitionist project within the conference Women’s Worlds 2011
Montreal - The Turcotte jury got it wrong
Reasons I Will Not Go On the Slutwalk
International Sex Industries and their Accomplices Hamper the Autonomy of All Women
Ten Critical Reasons for getting rid of Harper’s Conservatives
Real solidarity with prostituted women is in the fight for abolition of prostitution
Decriminalize prostituted persons and criminalize those who exploit them (‘johns’ and pimps)
Polygamy in Canada Should Remain Illegal
My fears of the push for indoors prostitution
We cannot be satisfied with the simple harm-reduction model
The Native Women’s Association of Canada is Worried About Himel’s Judgement on Prostitution
Ontario Court Decision Abandons Aboriginal Women and Women of Colour to Pimps
Response to the VPD review in the cases of the Pickton Murders
Speech - The effects of globalization of political Islam on Women’s Rights, the question with polygamy, the Niqab and Honour Killing
Quebec Forges Enlightened Trail on Burkas
Breast Cancer a Disease, No a Marketing Opportunity
The International Campaign To Closedown Iranian Embassies
Violation of rights in Iran, a window from my experience to a broader picture
"Sex worker" ? Never met one !
The One Million Signatures Campaign has been awarded the prestigious Global Women’s Rights Award from the Feminist Majority Foundation
Prostitution - Feminist Perspectives, a book
Prostitution : Violating the Human Rights of Poor Women
More than 1 000 american historians call for equity in the stimulus package in open letter to Obama
Order of Canada Awarded to Dr. Morgentaler - Acts of intimidation should not rule Canada
Femaid report on Afghanistan, May 2008
Time for Quebecers to be more open : Bouchard-Taylor report
Canadian Bar Association supports strengthening equality in the Quebec Charter
Zero Tolerance for Johns : How the Government of Sweden Would Respond to Spitzer
Politicians are responsible for toxic, misogynist environment facing girls
Spitzer - The Myth of the Victimless Crime
Goodbye To All That (#2)
The freedom to never prostitute oneself
NO legalized brothels for the Olympics 2010 - Aboriginal women’s Action Network statement on prostitution
CLES says NO to the violence of prostitution
Does Porn Make the Man ?
A Trip Into the Absurd
Mothers File International Complaint Against United States
Prostitutes are victims, not criminals
Anthology of Québec Women’s Plays in English Translation, Volume I (1966-1986)
The Concertation des luttes contre l’exploitation sexuelle (CLES) intervene during the upcoming provincial election
Prostitution - Three Women and a Debate
Men Favour the Apolitical Discourse on Prostitution
The Whole Truth Must be Told : Sylviane’s testimony on her experience of prostitution
Democracy and Religious Obligations : an Impasse ?
What is liberation ? Feminism past, present and future
Books by Andrea Dworkin
Globalization, Militarism and Sex Trafficking
Muslim Groups Denounce the Cultural Relativism of a Certain Left
Canadian Muslim leader alleges her veil views sparked vandalism
Prostitution : CATW’S Post-World Cup Statement
NOW to denounce so-called parental alienation
Prostitution : for an Abolitionist Bill
The dimensions of trafficking for purposes of prostitution
"Charm is a Guise ; Batterers Belong in Jail, Expert Says"
Interview with Catherine MacKinnon : Are Women Human ?
Danish cartoons - Doing away with the Enlightenment ?
It’s happening next door : from incestuous girls to alienating mothers
Green Light for Pimps and Johns
Buying Sex is not a Sport
Prostitution is Violence Against Women
The Ideal Site for the Crime
Tell me, what does "gender" really mean ?
Gunilla Ekberg : « The best thing we can do for our sisters is to support them to get out of prostitution »
Interview with Catharine A. MacKinnon : « They haven’t crushed me yet. »
Decriminalizing prostitution, a magnet for pimps and johns
Declaration on Religious Arbitration in Family Law
Prostitution : Towards a Canadian policy of abolition
Prostitution inseparable of violence against women
The need for a public debate on prostitution and its social consequences
Prostitution of First Nations Women in Canada
270 000 $ granted to Stella for a four days event on sex work
IN MEMORIAM : Andrea Dworkin or The passion for justice
Decriminalizing prostitution will not improve the security of prostituted women
Dworkin - Taking Back the Night
Backlash and Whiplash : A Critique of Statistics Canada’s 1999 General Social Survey on Victimization
Helping the prostituted women or promoting prostitution ?
The Need for a Public Debate on Prostitution and its Social Consequences
The legalization of prostitution and its impact on trafficking in women and children
Prostitution Links, Women’s Justice Center
"If you don’t take a job as a prostitute, we can stop your benefits"
Sweden Treating Prostitution as Violence Against Women
Forced marriage as crime
Why Women Must Get out of Men’s Laps
International Campaing Against Shari’a Court in Canada
Decriminalize prostituted women, not prostitution
Canada Contributes to the Sexual Trafficking of Women for Purposes of Prostitution
Fathers’ Rights Groups in Australia and their Engagement with Issues in Family Law
Women Rage Against ’Rape’ in Northeast India
Sexual domination in uniform : an american value
Tribunals Will Marginalize Canadian Muslin Women and Increase Privatization of Family Law
The sexual sadism of our culture, in peace and in war
Queer theory and violence against women
The Legalisation of Prostitution : A failed social experiment
Globalization and the Sex Trade : Trafficking and the Commodification of Women and Children
Will Paternal Paranoia Triumph ?
Ode to Survivors
Court confirms any woman’s human right to organize with peers
Program produces motherless kids
Legitimating Prostitution as Sex Work : UN Labour Organization (ILO) Calls for Recognition of the Sex Industry (Part One)
Legitimating Prostitution as Sex Work : UN International Labour Organization Calls for Recognition of the Sex Industry (Part Two)
Elisabeth Badinter distorts feminism the better to fight it
Prostitution : Rights of Women or Right to Women ?
The "Stolen Feminism" Hoax : Anti-Feminist Attack Based on Error-Filled Anecdotes
Hormone Replacement Therapy, the "Magic Bullet" Ricochets
For the sake of the children : the law, domestic violence and children contact in England
Friendships between women good for health
Children of divorce need our protection
Divorce Bill’s flaws inadvertently aid abusers
Problem isn’t little boys, it’s little minds
A report from Status of Women Canada about the discursive denial of gender inequalities
Ten Reasons for Not Legalizing Prostitution
Poem for Peace
Peace Rally Speech of a 12 year old American Girl
Good clone, bad clone ?
Canadian Women’s Health Network
So hard to say goodbye
I think a lot of women both in and out of the sex industry are in for a shock now that the Bedford court decisions are starting to pile up. Many good hearted and sensible people have been tricked by the widespread propaganda mounted in support of this court case. The case brought by Allan Young hopes to strike down all laws that attempt to limit or oppose those men buying sex or those managing women so that other men could profit and sexploitively indulge themselves with impunity.
Many were tricked by the often repeated references to the Pickton case as though somehow this law addressed the horror of Pickton’s murderous behavior. Pickton regularly solicited women for prostitution on the street corner outside his regular bar/hotel hangout. He was a regular john there. He also hired underlings to go to the harm reduction hang outs to fetch/pimp other drug addicted women with promises of cash and drugs. He could have been arrested under the solicitation law but never was. He was not even shooed away by either police or social workers. He and his brother offered prostitution at least at Piggy’s Palace, that is they ran a brothel. His impunity emboldened him. The propaganda of this case says that Pickton would go to a brothel and be screened as an undesirable customer. Well in terms of brothels, he was the owner ; in terms of street prostitution he was an unmolested regular. This case would not change a thing for him.
Some even still believe that the role of Allan Young was an effort to protect these most vulnerable street women, many of whom are Aboriginal, from indignity danger and violence but in fact his tactic argues for abandoning women both on the street and in the bawdy houses or brothels to the mercies of owners, organized crime, street gangs, traffickers and the individual johns who feel entitled to have any sexual fantasy fulfilled by women too desperate to refuse. He simply argues for the state to withdraw. Not supply or redistribute nor improve or intensify or aid or help but just withdraw as though this exchange between one john and one woman has nothing to do with the rest of us. As though we can afford to think the state cannot play a positive role. As though rights and obligations hard won by generations before us need be dropped. As though women’s liberty is made up of only absence of state.
And do not imagine for a moment that Young or his kind proposes a more community based intervention. Only abolitionist feminists have done that seriously. It is us who argue for men changing, for the left to stand up to this exploitation, for public education to speed that process, for quick and humane penalties, for community supports for all including those caught up in the sex trade.
I too am appalled by the statement issued by the university institute named for Beauvoir. This is not the version of freedom promoted by Simone de Beauvoir and I believe it does not do honour to her struggle (or that of many others including mine), to understand women’s oppression and the way forward to a better world. She asserted and we have confirmed since her day that most women and girls are trapped in prostitution. She allowed as some few others are seduced or tricked into accepting a tawdry celebrity style imitation of freedom, one based in personal license to fend for one’s self with the illusion that if we indulge in self promotion, accept and “do what it takes” to any level of self mutilation/invention/performance (cosmetic surgery, body modification, make-up and fashion) we can make our way to power. This has become the neo-liberal mantra : we are all on our own and must fend for ourselves accepting any kind of degradation so long as it pays and so long as it falsely promises hopes of making a fortune. Not only does that not work out so well for most, but Beauvoir and feminism argues a contrary notion that the (women’s) freedom worth fighting for is one that enriches the dignified freedom of others. That freedom she asserts rejects the callous trade of others for self advance, rejects the continued enslavement of the most oppressed and rejects the squalid invitation to men to continue to oppress others in trade for our personal so called “liberty”.
This Bedford case is not a promise of more safety. In spite of the inadequacy of law enforcement, most feminists still claim that Law and the state have a job to do in protecting women from male violence. Each woman need not be on her own against every and all men. The illegal informal trade in sex will mushroom. It already has in this current environment of wink wink nod nod understanding in which police never arrest johns. They pretend that sex traffickers, pimps and johns cannot be stopped just as they for years claimed that abusing husbands and incestuous fathers could not be caught in law because the women would not cooperate with law. Letting the authorities off the obligation is not the answer. We also need a lot more than criminal law and fair enforcement. Women need a guaranteed income above the old welfare levels to be able to leave an abusive boss, husband or pimp, we need childcare and healthcare for all, among other social programs. We need fair immigration and labour policies so women can migrate without the danger of trafficking. Pity the women hoping beyond hope that the health inspectors, the labour standards officers, the immigration man are gonna come and set things right, protect them. Heard of the water scandals, the food contamination, the ecological messes. We don’t hire inspectors anymore and when they do come look for side deals and dismissals that will precede them.
The silliness of the call for safe brothels is beyond naive. Since when do bosses call on the law to protect workers from violence on the job when profits are at stake ? It is one thing to push for limits on bosses that already exist and another to create a whole new market and set of legitimized bosses in the name of safety. How are these security guards receptionists and clean bright places to be paid for ? How do coops work if one member insists that the target profits have to be made regardless of danger ? Are we to have government financing of these brothels ? Try getting government funding for a bread making coop. This government will tell you to leave it to the market and that will be the same old players : multinationals, gangsters, organized crime, street gangs and predatory thugs. Ask Holland Ask Sweden who have had to reverse the legalized brothels. Or on the scaled down plan where two women share space or work from home, where are their families, their children ? Ask India. Try Calcutta. Some option. We need criminal law on violence against women including this violence against these women.
This Bedford case is one of a libertarian trying to exploit a conservative court in a neoliberal age. Allan Young openly says he never thought this case would do a thing for street women but he carefully never contradicted the opportunistic media work that claimed this was decriminalization not legalization and he never corrected the helpful message that this case would save the vulnerable trapped women on the street from deadly violence. And for those who hired him to profess their attachment to street prostitutes at this point is to reveal either cynicism opportunism or willful blindness.
On Sisyphe, March 29, 2012
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Lee Lakeman Representative for B.C. and the Yukon of the Canadian Association of Sexual Assault Centres, she has been working with victims of rape and sexual assault since 1973. She is now part of the national decision-making body of CASAC, which includes CALACS from Quebec and other individual member centres. She was elected by the Canadian Women’s March Committee to the international committee discussing prostitution. Site Web.
Representative for B.C. and the Yukon of the Canadian Association of Sexual Assault Centres, she has been working with victims of rape and sexual assault since 1973. She is now part of the national decision-making body of CASAC, which includes CALACS from Quebec and other individual member centres. She was elected by the Canadian Women’s March Committee to the international committee discussing prostitution. Site Web.
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