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Regarding the Sex Industry and “Empowerment”, Pt. 2 – Choices

Posted by A birch tree on April 4, 2008

The question nobody asks is WHY women would choose those paths.

Are we talking about women who have the option between stripping, a scholarship to Harvard, and a fulfilling career in a skilled trade with no glass ceiling? Or are we talking about the option between watching your five year old starve on the street and taking off your clothes for men to gawk at you?

I would propose a study: let’s take some women in porn and offer them a no-strings-attached position as a carpenter’s apprentice, or truck driver trainee, or steelworker’s apprentice, with the same advancement opportunities as men, and see what they choose.

I think what a lot of people miss is that radical feminists are all for sex-worker’s rights. Their right not to be abused, exploited or raped, and their right to get out if the want to are all parts of the “sex-workers rights” thing. That right is not protected by advocating legalization of prostitution (see, again, Prostitution Research). That right is not protected by enabling pornography producers to move more and more extreme body-punishing acts into the mainstream.

Fight for women’s right to choose their path in life? Bloody hell, yes. What the sex-pos crowd misses is that part of that fight is enabling that choice to be an actual choice, instead of simply glamourizing their oppression and the performance of sexual acts and mimicry for men’s pleasure.

How many of the women in this thread would quit their jobs, or drop out of their schooling, to become a prostitute? A stripper? A porn star? It’s not a choice unless it can be freely chosen, and as the links I’ve provided help to show, that fact is rarely in evidence.

IMHO, burlesque, strip clubs, porn, etc are nothing more than the PC version of minstrel shows with blackface. Present and promote a pleasing stereotype of women to the dominant class for money and acceptance, and it can be dressed up as much as you like, it’ll never lead to equality, only the perpetuation of exactly those myths and misconceptions that feminism is supposed to be fighting.

Tell you what. Let’s all fight for women’s rights to be in an occupation men can be in, with no glass ceilings, and no wage gap. Let’s all fight for women’s rights not to be raped, molested, and otherwise sexually assaulted by strangers, friends, and family members. Let’s all fight for women’s rights to be judged by some criteria other than their bodies, their right to not to have to live life 20 pounds underweight lest they face ridicule and derision, their right not to have to pander to male sexual fantasies for acceptance and a passing familiarity with humanization.

Let’s do all that, then see how many women still choose to work in the sex industry. At that point, the “sex-pos” crowd will have my support, because that’s when sexual display can be a tool for self-discovery and liberation, instead of stereotyping, control, and misogyny. That’s when sex work will truly be a choice.

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One Response to “Regarding the Sex Industry and “Empowerment”, Pt. 2 – Choices”

  1. […] and thought patterns that I could never begin to understand them, if that’s the case. Read parts two, Choices, and three, No Acceptable Losses, here. ***** […]

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