Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Real life prostitution!

Zumba Madam Alexis Wright joins a long list of madams prosecuted for prostitution--
There's a news story regarding prostitution starting to hit the national news cycle today, Maine Zumba sex case: John suspect names released. I tend to notice these things when they come up, because of my extensive research into the Chicken Ranch. To recap for those of you who aren't going to click through to read the whole piece, a Zumba instructor in Maine has been busted for running a prostitution operation in her studio, where she secretly videotaped herself and her clients in the act. That last bit's a bit of an eyebrow-raiser, but overall, there's nothing here that hasn't been rehashed a million times before. Except that the judge in the case has ordered the clients' names released, as would be the case with anyone charged with a crime.

This last bit has quite a few folks up in arms, crying about the injustice of it all, how these poor men are victims, etc. These quotes get to the heart of the matter:

The list of names was delayed Friday by legal action by an attorney representing two of the people accused of being johns. The lawyer, Stephen Schwartz, said releasing the names will ruin people's lives, even if they're acquitted of the misdemeanor charges against them.


Andrew Stanley, of Kennebunk, said the names should've been released sooner. Wright's alleged customers, he said, were mostly people with money or power who attempted to buy their way out of trouble through legal action.

"I think the names should have been released the second they were charged," he said.

But resident Leonid Temkin had mixed feelings about publicizing the names because it could cause marriages to dissolve and men to lose their jobs.

"I think it'll cause a lot of hardship," he said.
And therein lies the double-standard of our society. Nobody is standing up for the woman, Alexis Wright, decrying the fact that her name has been made public even though she's yet to be convicted of any crime. It's the poor men who paid for sex who are the victims! Boo hoo! Pity the johns! Time and time again I've seen this happen--with "Mayflower Madam" Sydney Biddle Barrows, "Hollywood Madam" Heidi Fleiss, "D.C. Madam" Deborah Jeane Palfrey and "Soccer Mom Madam" Anna Gristina--every time a prostitution operation is busted, there's a brief flurry of titillation where the prosecutors hint they'll release client lists, but at the end of the day, they never do. The women go to jail, but the men who kept them in business get off scott free. Invariably, this is justified to "preserve their good names and reputations."

Here's a newsflash: Men patronizing prostitutes are not good and reputable, upstanding members of the community. Women often go into prostitution to survive, whereas men solicit prostitutes because they can. Notice a little bit of difference there? Prosecutors force a soccer mom into a plea deal for arranging girl-on-girl action for an undercover cop to watch, but the Fortune 500 CEO merely goes online and arranges a date with a $500 and hour call girl for later that night. How much time has Charlie Sheen done for his patronage of prostitutes, which he's not only admitted, but bragged about? Meanwhile, Fleiss received a sentence of 7 years. Palfrey hanged herself rather than go to prison. None of the high-profile Washington insiders reportedly on Palfrey's client list--including Vice President Dick Cheney--ever had to so much as testify, much less face charges.

I am sick to death of the inherent hypocrisy of our current laws regulating sexual behavior and prostitution. They're only selectively enforced at best. If a woman is successful and becomes wealthy as a prostitute, she becomes a target. If a wealthy and successful man patronizes prostitutes, he gets a free pass. The same thing pretty much happened with the Chicken Ranch--Edna Milton got shut down and lost her business and income, but the senators, governors, legislators and businessmen who kept her in business for decades got a wink and a nod before they were slipped the phone numbers of call girls in Houston, Austin and Dallas with which to replace the ladies of the Chicken Ranch.

The hypocrisy disgusts me.

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