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Prostitution Industry in Bangkok Essay

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Updated: Apr 19th, 2022

As far as prostitution in Bangkok is concerned, it has been estimated that here are about 200 European women and 500 Chinese women in the sex industry (Clark, 2005, p. 23). This has come to be referred to as the dark side of Thailand that people don’t know which portrays a narrow segment of life in Bangkok. In this case, it has been estimated that the sex industry as a whole generates more than 100 billion baht each year.

This has always been as a result of various short term sex establishments that have sprung up as time goes by. As far as the industry as a whole is concerned, thousands of women are always sold to brothels in Bangkok by unscrupulous job brokers.

Brothels have always operated in an organized international syndicate for their own sustainability when it comes to money issues. 40% of foreigners make up majority of prostitutes in different establishments in Bangkok (Clark, 2005, p. 55).

The industry has different segmentations based on the amount of money that is involved in the business. It should be known that a large number of women and children alike are always lured into the business from neighboring countries to Bangkok with the promise and expectation of good money.

This implies that most of these prostitutes want to go to Bangkok for prostitution because of the thriving industry in the country which might not be the case in their own countries (Seabrook, 1996, p. 35). Thai women always move to other roles in the sex industry which therefore requires replacement that is always done by trafficking in other foreign women who are estimated at more than 10,000 every year.

As much as fewer Thai women have entered the sex industry in recent years, there has been a large influx of women from Burma and Southern China into the country for prostitution (Murcott, 1991, p. 62). Most prostitutes in Bangkok have entered the country illegally which shows that there are thousands of foreign women in the sex industry.

Prostitution culture and public opinions

It should be known that prostitution is one of the areas where issues of people’s private life are always subjected to public opinion as far as cultural history is concerned. This means that there are several underlying factors that have been behind the prostitution culture in Thailand and more specifically Bangkok.

The practice of prostitution is illegal but it has been practiced throughout the country which raises various integrity issues (Cleo, 1994, p. 9). The fact that prostitution is illegal in the country has made it difficult for various stakeholders to estimate the exact number of women and children who are involved in the sex industry.

On the other hand, just like in other countries, people’s views about prostitution in Thailand have always been influenced by cultural changes that have emerged with modernity (Hanna, 2004, p. 89). Visiting a prostitute or a mistress in Thailand is common but it doesn’t mean that it is acceptable behavior.

This is a held public opinion that has been ignored by different people who are involved in the sex industry. The society has a lot of tolerance to the downtrodden which has ended up shaping perceptions and attitudes towards prostitution.

It should be known that the attitude of different Thai girls towards prostitution is shaped by the society’s cultural norm. The acceptance of tolerating people who are downtrodden has enabled prostitution to flourish without any social stigma that is found in other countries and societies (Peracca, 2005, p. 16).

Social stigma towards prostitution in Thailand has not taken root because prostitutes provide assistance to their families and relatives. This has therefore tilted public opinion in their favor as time goes by thereby creating a new culture where although prostitution is illegal, it is wholly embraced by the society (McCamish, 2002. p. 40).

The political power has not been able to create some national subjectivity that is desired to make a firm national position or opinion about prostitution and the sex industry in Thailand. Thailand’s modernization has been greatly influenced by many cultures that relate to western capitalism thereby playing a big role in shaping peoples opinion on the issue of prostitution.

As far as culture is concerned, prostitution in Thailand is illegal but it is tolerated and partly regulated in practice (Bales, 1999, p. 19). This means that the country is breeding a culture of child prostitution based on different and diverse aspects that are supposed to be evaluated if public opinion is expected to shift in the near future.

Gambling culture in Thailand

It should be known that Thailand, at least at a façade level, is not a gambling state as many people might assume it to be. This means that the state does not in any way permit casinos and sports books although official lottery is allowed. There are certain underlying factors that will always tempt people into gambling in different societies which are expected depending on the motive.

As far as the culture in the country is concerned, there are other officially endorsed activities apart from gambling. On the other hand, as much as it is illegal, it is widely popular in the country just like any other place. Illegality in gambling in Thailand means that there is more discretion that is involved (Rich, 2007, p. 20).

There has been an argument that the Thai government should legalize some forms of gambling from different quarters of the country but these needs proper review for long term sustainability.

Just like prostitution, gambling is illegal but there are other people who have continued with the practice without fear. As far as this issue is concerned, it is quite obvious that gambling has some economic and social impacts whether it is legal or illegal.

There are some small exceptions that allow people to gamble in one way or the other. This therefore brings us to the aspect of the effects of gambling to the society and individuals. Legalized and illegal gambling will always have some effects on the society in the country in one way or the other. There are many illegal gambling spots in the country known as Siam.

This can be explained from the fact that many foreign nationals have always come in the country to engage in these illegal gambling. This means that the practice is acceptable amongst the citizens as an economic activity that can give them money (Kausch, 2003, p. 37). People get addicted to gambling because of the monetary returns that are associated with it.

This means that as long as somebody is getting money from gambling, she or he will continue doing it in the long term. In the process, this has often led to addiction to gambling with far reaching consequences. As time goes by, different cartels have emerged by to protect their interest as far as gambling is concerned.

It should be known that there are grave dangers for people who do not want to pay as far as gambling is concerned. People who get on the wrong side of gamblers have always paid with death which has led to a bad culture that is emerging in the country.

The psychology of gambling

There are different aspects of gambling that are supposed to be understood. In this case, it should be known that addiction to gambling can always ruin finances and family relationships in one way or the other. This means that there are different psychological aspects that are used by casinos to encourage people into gambling. In fact, it is as far as making a bet on the outcome of different events is concerned.

Gambling is always considered an immoral activity because those people who engage in it might end up stealing or coming crimes to get the money. In the long run, it always leads to greater poverty because people want to continue playing and pay debts that they have incurred as a result of gambling (Hagan, 2010, p. 27). Gambling has always been seen as a manifestation of greed by various people in the society.

This is because despite the greed and laziness, there is a desire to get rich as time goes by without working hard or investing in anything. There is an exploitation of human frailty that is involved in gambling which explains why it has thrived illegally in Thailand and other countries.

Gambling becomes a problem in the society when an individual cannot control what he or she is spending in the long run and short run. There is always a rush mentality to gambling although there is an addiction to some occasional pay offs. On the other hand, gambling can be fun when it becomes more than a game. In this case, people become addicted to gambling because of the thrill to win and the anticipation of winning.

People who are addicted to gambling believe that it can help them in alleviating different and diverse problems that they might be facing in one way or the other.

This means that such individuals are likely to spend considerable amounts of money to get whatever they want as far as gambling is concerned (Volberg, 2002, p. 103). Therefore compulsive gambling has been described as a disorder that affects various people in Thailand who engage in gambling illegally in one way or the other.

Narcotics, how people get addicted

There are various factors that have always led to addiction in one way or the other depending on the prevailing situation and circumstance. Using narcotics has never caused addiction in any way. People therefore become physiologically dependent on drugs as time goes by. In this case, it does occur that there is nobody who starts depending on drugs from the word go but rather it takes time (Rang, 2003, p. 44).

This means that there is an addiction cycle that is followed by everybody before they become fully fledged addicts. The addiction cycle is the reoccurring process that takes place as people cope with addiction. In the first stage there is always acting out where people engage in some behavior to relive stress (Roesner, 2006, p. 72).

After acting out, there is always guilt and remorse due to sinning that the individual has engaged in. Shame and depression follows guilt and remorse because people feel badly about themselves based on what they have done. Shame and depression leads to recommitments as a result of the behavior that people engage in (Hillman, 2008, p. 60).

Most notably, there is some recommitment to the same habit that an individual was feeling shame about. Performance follows recommitment which ultimately leads to stress that makes people and individuals to continue using the drug.

Stress can be manifested in different ways but it is brought about by diverse and distinct aspects. Fear of failure, fear of rejection and expectations can always lead to stress which should be understood.

People turn to the life of crime and prostitution to support addiction because such aspects are related in one way or the other. Addiction is very bad and an individual needs the drug to support his life which means that they can do anything to get the money that will get those drugs (Boob, 2007, p. 51). Many drug users will always turn to prostitution to support their habits because they never have any meaningful way of getting money.

By engaging in prostitution they will be able to get money and thereby continue using drugs. On the other hand, people who cannot engage in prostitution will turn to crime to get money. In this case, addicts can only support their behavior by turning to prostitution and crime (Gass, 2008, p. 39). Lacking income to support an illegal habit is very bad which turns people to crime and prostitution.

It should be known that pimps always use violence and drugs as a control mechanism in different ways. This is always a strategy of control over their activities should be understood for long term sustainability when it comes to understanding this issue. In this case, drugs are a control mechanism that they have always used to support their activities when it comes to monopolizing.

The most renowned form of control mechanism has always been violence but if this fails to work out, pimps have always resorted to drugs. Just like other drug dealers, pimps are also able to keep their business by using any means possible. All in all, it should be known that drug addiction, prostitution and crime are related in one way or the other meaning that they will always thrive together.

Reference List

Bales, K. (1999). Disposable People: New Slavery in the Global Economy. Los Angeles: University of California Press.

Boob, G. (2007). Stress, Dysregulation of Drug Reward Pathways, and the Transition to Drug Dependence. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone.

Clark, J. (2005). Falang: Behind Bangkok’s Smile. Bangkok: Oxford press.

Cleo, O. (1994). Patpong Sisters: An American Woman’s View of the Bangkok Sex World. New York: Routledge.

Fuller, P. (1975). The Psychology of Gambling. New York: Harper Colophon Books.

Gass, T. (2008). Glutamatergic substrates of drug addiction and alcoholism. Chicago: University of Chicago press.

Hagan, K, (2010). Gambling linked to one in five suicidal patients. Melbourne: The Age.

Hanna, D. (2004). Brit Girls who pay Thais for no-strings sex. Thailand: Daily Mirror.

Hillman, D. (2008).The Chemical Muse. New York City: St. Martin’s Press.

Kausch, O. (2003). Patterns of substance abuse among treatment-seeking pathological gamblers. Thailand: The Nation.

McCamish, M. (2002). The structural relationships of Support from male sex workers in Pattaya to rural parents in Thailand. Bangkok: Parallax Press.

Murcott, S. (1991). The First Buddhist Women: Translations and Commentary on the Therigatha. Bangkok: Parallax Press.

Peracca, S. (2005).Young teens happy with sex work. Thailand: The Nation.

Rang, H. (2003). Pharmacology. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone.

Rich, B. (2007). Gambling had role in religious history. Bangkok: Oxford press.

Roesner, S. (2006). New pharmacological approaches for the treatment of alcoholism. New York: Routledge.

Seabrook, J. (1996).Travels in the Skin Trade: Tourism and the Sex Industry. Bangkok: Parallax Press.

Volberg, A. (2002). The epidemiology of pathological gambling. New York: St. Martin’s Press.

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