Prostitution is referred to as one of the oldest professions. However, prostitution is not legalized. Women who sell their bodies as well as men who pay for sexual services are criminals according to the current legislation. In many countries, including the United States, the police arrests individuals involved in prostitution, however, a careful examination of the problem reveals that legalization of prostitution may improve the quality of life in society as well as generate wider benefits for the community. There are four reasons to legalize prostitution:
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- legalization promotes safety and improves the neighborhoods;
- it reduces crime;
- legalization decreases the number of sexually transmitted diseases; and
- it generates economic benefits.
The first reason to legalize prostitution is the promotion of safety. Currently, prostitutes are forced into the places where they should not – streets of neighborhoods. Residents of the neighborhoods are exposed to the activity. In addition, working on the streets is not safe for prostitutes who become frequent targets for serial killers. Legalization of prostitution, as it is already done in several European cities, removes these women from the streets to the designated areas. As the result, the safety of the neighborhoods is maintained. Moreover, people who are interested in buying sexual services can freely go to the places where prostitution is permitted.
The second reason to legalize prostitution is to reduce the crime. One of the problems associated with prostitution is increased crime and drug abuse. When a woman is charged for a sex crime (prostitution), the stigma lasts for lifetime. As the result, this woman is not able to find another employment. Legalization of prostitution gives women a choice in profession. Illegal prostitution promotes crime activity because many criminals view prostitutes as targets for rape, robbery, and fraud. Prostitutes are unlike to report the crime to police because they are involved into illegal activity. Legalization of prostitution makes victims less reluctant to report to police. Thus, more criminals are caught and the crime level decreases.
The third reason to legalize prostitution is to reduce the number of sexually transmitted diseases. Legalization of prostitution can be accompanied with required tests for sexually transmitted diseases as well as availability of related training. Legal prostitution contributes to improved awareness on sexually transmitted diseases as well as promotes healthier sex. As the result, the spread of sexually transmitted diseases is prevented. Individuals using sexual services may bring the gained diseases home to their wives. Legalization of prostitution will stop this spread and make the nation healthier.
Finally, legalization of prostitution generates economic benefits. Sexual services are not taxed because they are provided against the law. Taking into account that prostitution cannot be eliminated as a practice, more attention should be devoted to making it beneficial for community. If to legalize prostitution, to turn it into profession, women offering sexual services will pay taxes. As the result, the national budget increases. In addition, law-enforcement resources spent on identifying prostitutes will be allocated for better use. It is argued that sexual services are a matter of choice: woman has the right to choose what to do with her body as well as man has a choice how to get sex. From this perspective, prostitution legalization promotes freedom of choice and privacy. In conclusion, while the government devotes numerous efforts and funds to stop prostitution, it remains blind to the benefits of legalizing sexual services.