Why is prostitution banned - isn't that Biblical morality?

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Why is prostitution banned - isn't that Biblical morality?

#1  Postby Kenneth-Kaunda » Jul 07, 2012 10:36 am

Why is prostitution banned in many Western nations?

(or at least, effectively banned).

The way I see it , this is a case of Judeo-Christian morality seeping into the supposedly secular legal system.

If a woman wants to sell her body and a man pay for it , then so what?

what harm is done to anyone?

(this is referring to cases of consensual agreement from both parties).
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Re: Why is prostitution banned - isn't that Biblical morality?

#2  Postby z8000783 » Jul 07, 2012 10:43 am

Not much different to boxing really only more pleasurable to watch.

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Re: Why is prostitution banned - isn't that Biblical morality?

#3  Postby Kenneth-Kaunda » Jul 07, 2012 11:01 am

that's a good comparison.

Two men are allowed to bash each others' heads in for money, but man and woman cannot have sex for money.

where is the logic here?

or are we still really living in OT times.
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Re: Why is prostitution banned - isn't that Biblical morality?

#4  Postby John P. M. » Jul 07, 2012 11:04 am

It may be traditional Christian morality, but I can't find a ban on prostitution in the Bible; quite the contrary in many cases, where rather prominent biblical figures bought services from prostitutes with indemnity, and prostitutes did good acts that they were commended for, the verses never mentioning anything bad about their profession.

I suppose Jesus' 'thought crime act' comes into the picture though, at least if he seriously meant that one shouldn't even look at a female with any kind of lust...

As for my own morality, I can't really come up with a better argument against prostitution than that few can actually emotionally cope with selling themselves, and get a horrible life as a consequence. And of course physical and emotional abuse from customers. And that 'pimps' act pretty much as slave owners. Others have then pointed out to me that physical and emotional trouble can be had in other lines of work as well, so... It's a tough one.
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Re: Why is prostitution banned - isn't that Biblical morality?

#5  Postby Zwaarddijk » Jul 07, 2012 11:21 am

John P. M. wrote:It may be traditional Christian morality, but I can't find a ban on prostitution in the Bible; quite the contrary in many cases, where rather prominent biblical figures bought services from prostitutes with indemnity, and prostitutes did good acts that they were commended for, the verses never mentioning anything bad about their profession.

Hm, where did prostitutes that did good acts be condemned for it in the Bible? IIRC the only thing even close to that is things done by "bad guys" in the NT.
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Re: Why is prostitution banned - isn't that Biblical morality?

#6  Postby tuco » Jul 07, 2012 11:46 am

Luke 7:36-50

and while the story is touching, I suspect reality was a bit different. Jesus loves prostitutes.
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Re: Why is prostitution banned - isn't that Biblical morality?

#7  Postby John P. M. » Jul 07, 2012 12:00 pm

Zwaarddijk wrote:
John P. M. wrote:It may be traditional Christian morality, but I can't find a ban on prostitution in the Bible; quite the contrary in many cases, where rather prominent biblical figures bought services from prostitutes with indemnity, and prostitutes did good acts that they were commended for, the verses never mentioning anything bad about their profession.

Hm, where did prostitutes that did good acts be condemned for it in the Bible? IIRC the only thing even close to that is things done by "bad guys" in the NT.


Commended (for their good deeds).
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Re: Why is prostitution banned - isn't that Biblical morality?

#8  Postby Spearthrower » Jul 07, 2012 12:19 pm

Kenneth-Kaunda wrote:Why is prostitution banned in many Western nations?.


It's not just banned in Western nations as you are undoubtedly aware having lived in both Thailand and Cambodia - it's illegal in both countries and clearly nothing to do with Biblical morality so your hypothesis is running into difficult waters to explain why it's illegal in so many non-Judeo-Christian cultures.

Also, generally in Western nations, it's not the actual prostitution that's banned, it's the act of employing a prostitute.

Further, the implication in the OP is that it's intrinsically tied to morality, whereas there could be many factors at play in a modern state.
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Re: Why is prostitution banned - isn't that Biblical morality?

#9  Postby Spearthrower » Jul 07, 2012 12:19 pm

Kenneth-Kaunda wrote:
or are we still really living in OT times.


In OT times, was prostitution universally illegal then?
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Re: Why is prostitution banned - isn't that Biblical morality?

#10  Postby byofrcs » Jul 07, 2012 12:27 pm

Well it is probably a bit like how only a few years ago women didn't actually have the vote so I suspect that just like in parts of Australia where prostitution is actually legal then in time this will be decriminalised and then made legal elsewhere.

The current state of affairs simply means it is driven underground and the women end up in a worse position because the can't legally legitimize their business without getting penalised by authorities.
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Re: Why is prostitution banned - isn't that Biblical morality?

#11  Postby Spearthrower » Jul 07, 2012 12:28 pm

In fact, looking at the data of the legality of prostitution by country and considering their dominant religion, it appears that Christian or formerly Christian nations are less likely to have laws making prostitution illegal.


Of the 100 countries listed here:

http://prostitution.procon.org/view.res ... eID=000772

39 countries have laws formally banning prostitution:

Afghanistan
Albania
Angola
Antigua and Barbuda
Bahamas
Barbados
Cambodia
China (including Taiwan)
Croatia
Cuba
Dominica
Egypt
Grenada
Guyana
Haiti
Iran
Iraq
Jamaica
Jordan
Kenya
Korea, North
Korea, South
Liberia
Lithuania
Malta
Philippines
Romania
Rwanda
Saint Kitts and Nevis
Saint Lucia
Saint Vincent and Grenadines
Saudi Arabia
Slovenia
South Africa
Suriname
Thailand
Trinidad and Tobago
Uganda
United Arab Emirates

(data taken from Central Intelligence Agency's World Factbook online at http://www.cia.gov (accessed June 11, 2009))


Most of them aren't Christian or formerly Christian, and none of them are 'Western'.

In fact, going by that list, Christian or formerly Christian nations are far more represented by prostitution being legal or of limited legality (as I mentioned above - most likely due to soliciting being illegal rather than prostitution itself).
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Re: Why is prostitution banned - isn't that Biblical morality?

#12  Postby Beatsong » Jul 07, 2012 12:49 pm

Prostitution isn't banned in many western nations. In fact I can't think of any where it is - although you could say that it is effectively so in Sweden where buying the services of a prostitute is banned.
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Re: Why is prostitution banned - isn't that Biblical morality?

#13  Postby Kenneth-Kaunda » Jul 08, 2012 7:41 am

I did say 'effectively banned' - meaning restricted in some kind of legal way, whether it be the purchasing, selling, soliciting or whatever.

but no one has yet come up with a WHY.

so why is is banned?
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Re: Why is prostitution banned - isn't that Biblical morality?

#14  Postby Beatsong » Jul 08, 2012 8:34 am

Kenneth-Kaunda wrote:I did say 'effectively banned' - meaning restricted in some kind of legal way, whether it be the purchasing, selling, soliciting or whatever.

but no one has yet come up with a WHY.

so why is is banned?


Well in the vast majority of cases it isn't even "effectively" banned. The Swedish approach is unusual and quite recent.

In most western countries selling sex is completely legal. Yes, it's subject to certain restrictions which might affect style of operating, advertising etc. But these are not designed to make it impossible to do, nor do they have that effect. It is fundamentally a perfectly legal transaction.

There are of course plenty of other things that are legal to sell but subject to restrictions. We don't say that alcohol is "banned" because you can't sell it to minors; or that plastic surgery is "banned" because you have to be qualified and registered to perform it. These kinds of things are perfectly normal when societies consider the effect of certain kinds of commerce outside of the transaction itself.

Sorry but the premise of your OP is simply wrong.
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Re: Why is prostitution banned - isn't that Biblical morality?

#15  Postby tuco » Jul 08, 2012 8:50 am

While the premise could, technically, be wrong, it is likely that in countries with the so called Judeo-Christian tradition - western countries - status of prostitution/prostitutes is/was influenced by Judeo-Christian value system. Interestingly enough, Jesus may actually have intended to promote respect for a class of people that is essentially dedicated to serving, and gets nothing but disdain in return. Then again, "Judeo-Christians" are bunch of hypocrites so ..
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Re: Why is prostitution banned - isn't that Biblical morality?

#16  Postby Beatsong » Jul 08, 2012 11:20 am

Oh "status" - sure. A perfectly valid question might be "why are prostitutes disadained?" And some of the reasons for that (Judeao-Christian morality, etc.) might also be reasons why some of the laws surrounding prostitution are not framed in the prostitutes' best interests (particularly in the UK).

I have to say though, I think the desire to control sexuality, and the projection of society's collective failure to do that onto the prostitute-as-fount-of-all-evil, is one of the great cultural universals. I see no evidence that Judeo-Christian countries do it any more than anyone else.
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Re: Why is prostitution banned - isn't that Biblical morality?

#17  Postby Spearthrower » Jul 08, 2012 2:58 pm

Kenneth-Kaunda wrote:I did say 'effectively banned' - meaning restricted in some kind of legal way, whether it be the purchasing, selling, soliciting or whatever.

but no one has yet come up with a WHY.

so why is is banned?



Did you look at the link to the hard data I supplied?

It's not effectively banned in Christian or pre-Christian Western nations as a rule - it's perfectly legal.

That doesn't mean that anything goes - for example:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prostituti ... ed_Kingdom

In the United Kingdom, prostitution itself (the exchange of sexual services for money) is not a crime,[2] but a number of related activities, including soliciting in a public place, kerb crawling, owning or managing a brothel, pimping and pandering, are crimes.

In England and Wales and in Northern Ireland it is an offence to pay for sex with a prostitute who has been “subjected to force” and this is a strict liability offence (clients can be prosecuted even if they didn’t know the prostitute was forced).

It is illegal to buy sex from a person younger than 18, although the age of consent for non-commercial sex is 16.



There are various reasons why things like soliciting may be made illegal that have nothing expressly to do with morality. Even when prostitution is legal, do you want men approaching women on the street and asking to buy sex from them? Is that a wise thing to allow?

Should pimping be legal? The act of profiting from selling someone else's body for sexual services?


So in answer to your question - prostitution isn't banned, and therefore no one can come up with a why it is banned, when it's not! :cheers:
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Re: Why is prostitution banned - isn't that Biblical morality?

#18  Postby Clive Durdle » Jul 08, 2012 5:07 pm

Looking at the list, do not Islamic countries have a harder puritan perspective on this? I would look at relationships to the status of women for answers to the why question.
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Re: Why is prostitution banned - isn't that Biblical morality?

#19  Postby tuco » Jul 08, 2012 6:39 pm

The question was about the so-called western countries. Their ethics and laws - culture is heavily influenced by the so-called Judeo-Christian tradition in general and when it comes to prostitution in particular. Where Judeo-Christian morality comes from, if from some cultural universals or something else is another question. Other than that there is such a thing as history of prostitution and one is free to educate her/himself. Prosecute and punish someone who is in disdain is much easier than do the same to someone who is admired. There is no brain surgery here.
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Re: Why is prostitution banned - isn't that Biblical morality?

#20  Postby The_Metatron » Jul 08, 2012 7:01 pm

Why is prostitution unlawful in many places? I don't know. Poorly thought out laws? It wouldn't be the first time, won't be the last. There exist tons of laws that make little sense on closer examination.
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