The article “Counterpoint: Prostitution Should Remain Illegal.”, by Richard Renneboog and Lee Tunstall, state that prostitution should not be legalized, by providing arguments from both sides of the issue. To begin their article, the authors present a debate over how the sex market because a part of our society. On one side, some people argue that prostitution is an “innate behaviour” or a “survival instinct” of primate societies who traded sexual favours in exchange for food and a secure social position (Renneboog & Tunstall 3). In this case, “modern societies must consider that it will never be possible to eliminate or control prostitution completely” with an act of legislation (Renneboog & Tunstall 3). The other side argues that prostitution is a choice made by mature women to “willingly pursue an independent, entrepreneurial lifestyle for which she accepts certain risks” and gives up certain social benefits (Renneboog & Tunstall 3).
The main argument, in favor of legalization, provided by Renneboog and Tunstall in their article, is that 90 percent of women who are prostitutes would try to escape from prostitution if they could, but because of different circumstances, it is the only way they can provide money to their families. They work under extremely hard conditions and the legalization would “allow standards to be established and monitored, activity to be controlled, and proceeds to be taxed” (Renneboog & Tunstall 3).
Renneboog and Tunstall use other countries, where prostitution has been legalized, as example to support their idea that it should remain illegal. In countries where it has been legalized, the situation went out of control; there is an increase in the involvement of criminal organizations, an increase in drug addiction and in human trafficking. People tend to believe that legalization “protects prostitutes from being brutalized by the legal system, pimps, and clients and from the dangers associated with prostitution” but experience has disapproved it (Renneboog & Tunstall 3). One of the main moral claims against legalization of prostitution is that “legalization decriminalizes all aspects of prostitution and treats it, in principle, the same as other service industries” (Renneboog & Tunstall 3).
On one side, I agree that prostitutes should have the right to a safe and healthy workplace, even if it is not considered a legal job; it’s still their way of gaining money. On the other side, I agree with the authors of this article that it will simply increase sex trafficking and place women in even more vulnerable situations. I also believe by “approving” this job, it makes it look as if it was a proper thing to do and more people would decide to become, or stay, prostitutes, instead of looking for a better way to make money. The authors view prostitution as a “complex issue with many basic causal factors that cannot be addressed by any single approach including legalization”; how can it be addressed?
Renneboog, Richard, Tunstall, Lee. “Counterpoint: Prostitution Should Remain Illegal.” Canadian Points of View: Prostitution (2014): n. Pag. Web. 04 Feb. 2014.