There exists a form of underground commerce that poses a very real, yet often overlooked threat: the exchange known as prostitution. For years, this practice has existed in many forms, and although it is illegal through the majority of the country, there is still a percentage of the nation that is actively involved in this crime.
Often regarded as “the oldest profession,” prostitution simply entails the act of engaging in human sexual activity for compensation. The individuals who provide the aforementioned services to clients are also referred to as prostitutes, or sex workers. The terms of each occasion are usually set forth by the worker for the purpose of safety and the elimination of any discrepancies that can arise during the course of an encounter. In many ways, this form of business has evolved highly over the years, and incidents can vary from impromptu meetings to high-profile appointments.
Existing as a prominent branch of the sex industry, the legality of prostitution varies from country to country, with current standings ranging from unenforced crime to regulated profession. A rough estimation in regards to the annual revenue generated by the prostitution industry across the globe totals more than $100 billion. The world of human trafficking also includes a degree of prostitution, usually to a more forced effect, and because of the nature of commercial sexual exploitation, frequently involves children.
Prostitution has been a criminal form of receiving compensation for years, and its history is not limited to occurrences in America. With extensive backgrounds in both modern and ancient cultures, the sexual service industry has seen much change since the early 18th century. During that time, traits of the sex industry could be seen across ancient Greece, Rome, and Asian societies. Throughout the course of both World Wars, as the appearance of women became more prominent within the working class, the practice of sexual exchange became common among working women as a supplementary income solution.
Before the controversial label was applied, prostitution was also widely legal within the United States. The almost nation-wide ban took place between the years of 1910 and 1915, as a result of the strong influences from the Women’s Christian Temperance Union and their push for international social reform. This movement also included a war on drugs and prohibiting the manufacture of alcohol.
During this year’s highly anticipated Superbowl, it was reported that a total of 16 juveniles and 50 women were rescued from a forced prostitution outfit that was operating during the festivities in New Jersey and the surrounding area. In the course of recovering the victims, the arrests of 45 alleged pimps and their accomplices took place. Among those numbers, some of the accused confessed to traveling to the region with the sole intention of trafficking the victims within the stadium at East Rutherford.
This incidence is just one in a series of increased counts of prostitution during the week leading up to the big game between the Denver Broncos and Seattle Seahawks, and the FBI is now vigilantly pursing an end to this sexual exploitation by bringing conviction to all offenders. Despite the varied views on the practice of prostitution in America for any form of compensation, there is a unanimous standpoint that forced sexual activities involving minors is a criminal and socially unacceptable taboo, with ample reason.
Editorial by Darrell Purcell