Keep Prostitution Criminal


Christian View

In August 2002, the South African Law Commission (SALC) published an issue paper suggesting the legalisation of prostitution. You have till 31 October 2002 to influence them. Some cities are also talking about 'red light districts'. Why should we stop prostitution?

Prostitution is not a 'victimless crime'.
· Prostitution defiles women through misuse of their sexuality, which causes emotional and spiritual damage. · Corruption of men - many more than if illegal- accessibility and removal of stigma. Prostitution & pornography promote view of women as sex objects - decreased value in family. · Damage to the family. Undermines loyalty in marriage - lead to divorce, instability & family break-up. · Prostitution spreads disease, which also affects innocent wives.

Prostitution is often not a 'free choice'
· Prostitution is usually accompanied by forms of force or enslavement - Most prostitutes use drugs regularly. Addiction means must stay to pay for drugs. Pimping, gangsterism; runaway girls to cities or immigrants who are promised good jobs. Often, the initial loss of innocence was forced by sexual abuse / rape. Sometimes there is trafficking in people. · It is addictive to many men, although they are ashamed of what they do.

Prostitution hurts ordinary people
· Neighbourhood decay: Prostitution leaves a mess such as (condoms); noise, obscene dress, gestures & language. They sexually harass men who walk nearby. Prostitutes bring other undesirable elements such as pimps and drug dealers to the neighbourhood. · Prostitutes often rob clients and themselves are the victims of violence. · Sometimes children are used as prostitutes. · Legalisation would attract aeroplanes of foreign tourist perverts to debauch Cape Town as in Thailand. Our current law

· The Sexual Offences Act of 1988: outlaws: prostitution, pimping, indecent exposure, including men soliciting prostitutes (although few prosecuted). · Municipal by-laws against loitering and zoning regulations are used against prostitution. · We have very weak enforcement. Pro-prostitution lawyers use human rights legislation to undermine police.

Proposals by SA Law Commission

The SALC proposed three options: Legalisation (with restrictions such as 'red light districts'); decriminalisation (unrestricted prostitution); or enforcing the current law. Their report unfortunately strongly biased in favour of legal prostitution. See for yourself at:

Pro-prostitution activism
· Pro-prostitution organisation 'Sex Workers Education and Advocacy Task force' (SWEAT) legally harass police who are tough on prostitution. · Brothel owners have even tried to get prostitution legalised through the constitutional court. Answers to arguments for legalisation

· Legalising prostitution would give more tax revenue for the government
[Answer: Don't make the state a pimp];

· Belief that legalisation will reduce accompanying problems such as disease and drugs by regulation. [Answer: If can't stop now, how stop HIV infected women still selling sex] · Prostitutes rights and protection from mistreatment: economic & sexual freedom [Answer: Not a legitimate economic activity or form of sexuality] · Some men can't control themselves. [Answer: Men who use prostitutes should be punished and seek help. Men should control themselves.]. Heroes in the fight against prostitution

· Martin Luther in an open letter to the German nobility asked in 1520 "how do many cities, towns and villages exist without such houses? Why should not great cities exist without them?" In response many of the cities of northern Europe were cleared of brothels. · The Salvation Army, in the nineteenth century fought under Bramwell Booth to clean up prostitution in England by political lobbying, journalism, petitions, public protest, evangelism and rehabilitation of prostitutes. The Salvation Army succeeded changing laws in many other countries. They even stopped forced prostitution in Japan despite their small numbers. Language

Pro-prostitution activists try to make selling sex sound acceptable by using the words 'sex-work' rather than 'prostitution'. We should avoid the trap of using their language.

· Proverbs 6:26-27 "the prostitute reduces you to a loaf of bread… Can a man scoop fire into his lap without his clothes being burned?" · Leviticus 19:29 "Do not degrade your daughter by making her a prostitute, or the land will turn to prostitution and be filled with wickedness." What can I do

· Need men and women of courage to fight forces of organised crime. · Email the Law Commission at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or phone: (012) 322 6440 - Insist keep all aspects of prostitution criminal. Deadline is 31 October 2002. · Write to newspapers objecting advertising prostitutes in classifieds. · Encourage local police to be tough on prostitution. Report police on brothels - must find person to complain to. · Use economic pressure: report to banks; landlords etc - not allowed to trade with illegal business. · Donations to welfare agencies rehabilitating ex-prostitutes. · Lobby & encourage local councillors/ parliamentarians.

For more information and resources contact:


Christian Action P.O.Box 23632 Claremont 7735 Cape Town South Africa - 021-689-4481 -
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