By Belinda Adjei
Prostitution has been in existence since ages and it also presents one of the greatest issues about whether it should be legalizes or not in the entire world wide. Many opponents and scholars consider prostitution as an evil act, as immoral, that it degrades and victimizes women etc. They also believe many prostitutes are forced into the profession by others who abuse them. However, legalizing prostitution does offer many benefits such as reducing the spread of HIV/AIDS. Legalization can also reduce human trafficking of women for forced prostitution; reducing violence against women; reducing inequality among women; influencing the poverty rate, and also generate tax revenue to the government. Prostitution is the voluntary sale (or rental) of a labor service. Individuals have the absolute right to decide how and what to do with their bodies. As long as the transaction is voluntary, there is no justification for governmental interference. Indeed, such interference constitutes an infringement of the privacy and personal liberty of the individuals involved (Armentano 1993). In the constitution, right to liberty gives the people full right to engage in their conduct without intervention of the government. even though majority opinions says that the decision did not apply to prostitution, a reasonable argument may be made that respect for privacy of consensual sexual conduct, In a free market for prostitution services, suppliers of labor services that are physically harmed would have the same rights to police protection and to legal recourse as the rest of us (Armentano 1993). Not all prostitutes are forced into the business. There are some that willingly use prostitution as a way to earn income. Opponents of legalizing prostitution argue that legalization will increase the number of women prostituting themselves. Research however, has shown that legalization of prostitution will not necessarily mean that more women will want to become prostitutes (Posted by Law Journal for Social Justice at Arizona State University September 8, 2011 (LJSJ.wordpress.com). It is almost impossible now to know how many women/men are involved in prostitution. The criminalization of this craft has resulted in the government not being able to fully capture the number, because of this, it is hard to justify an argument that prostitution will increase if it is legal.
Though many scholars criticize argue that prostitute is one of the most common ways to contract sexually transmitted diseases (STD) and HIV/AIDS, the legalization can decrease STD transmission. According to current evidence, roughly half of the street prostitutes in Washington, D.C., and New York City are HIV-positive. In Newark, New Jersey, it is estimated that close to sixty percent of all prostitutes carry the AIDS virus. Yet, in the relatively "free market" of Nevada, where prostitution is legal, not one (as of 1989) of the state-licensed prostitutes has ever tested positive for AIDS (Armentano 1993). Armentano’s research compared the health of legal Nevada brothel workers with that of the jailed Nevada streetwalkers, and discovered none of the brothel workers have the HIV/AIDS compared to six of the streetwalkers. Decriminalization of can decrease in STD and HIV/AIDS by allowing the government to implement and enforce laws that regulate the industry. Laws that ensure prostitutes have access to doctors, sex education, contraceptives, regular testing, and other means that prevent and reduce sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). This has proven to work for the adult industry, which drastically decreased the transmission of sexually transmitted diseases when required to test all participants.
Legalization of prostitution will reduce some of the negative results of human trafficking; possibly reduce trafficking of women in general. Women and children in poor countries are often targeted by traffickers with false promises of...