Why do we harbor so much of hatred towards prostitution and the so called porn-actors/actresses. Isn’t this another example for ancient western (Victorian) values engrained in to our so called ‘Sri Lankan’ (Sinhala Buddhist?) culture? Why is this ‘witch-hunt’? What purpose does it serve in terms of general wellbeing of Sri Lankan citizens? Do we think such a witch-hunt will improve the living conditions of a single person in Sri Lanka, other than the hypocrites and bigots who want to showoff their commitment to the Victorian moral code.
Looking at the social and legal repercussions, I don’t think anyone living in Sri Lanka would choose prostitution or pornography as their profession for “fun”. It is the poverty or extreme social duress that leads women (and men) to these avenues. These people are already victims, and such undue witch-hunt will only make them doubly victimized. Moreover, what about those women whom were tricked in to acting? What about those girls whom were videoed by their boyfriends, and subsequently leaked those videos to the net? What about those "photoshoped" images on the Net, where someone's face is attached someone else's naked body? Can a government order to publish photos of such people in public media, such that their lives are forever damaged?
I do not think that eastern values are superior to that of western. I really do not discriminate between east and west. However, I like to point out to some of those 'eastern' conservatives where some of their values really come from. Talking about the subject of prostitution, I really think that the stigma on it has medieval western roots. The ancient eastern cultures did not distinguish between prostitution and other similar professions, such as acting or other forms of entertainment. I always failed to understand the hard difference between acting and prostitution. Simulating sexual acts for artistic purposes in movies, and being viewed by millions vs. actually engaging in sexual acts in private with their clients? What is the difference? Why the huge difference in social acceptance? Why the huge difference in acceptance for those actors/actresses who act nude or semi-nude in movies that does not show their private parts to the audience vs. those people who act in movies that shows their private parts liberally?
Making prostitution or pornography illegal, never makes them go away. When you ban them, they go underground. Prostitution and pornography would then be controlled by underworld mafia and the corrupt officials in the legal system. As far as men and women in this particular trade are concerned, this environment makes them sex slaves of pimps who control their lives. The suffering of people in this pathetic part of the society increases. Crime network grows around this trade. This is a vicious cycle!
The only way to end this vicious cycle is to accept prostitution and pornography as another form of entertainment that can be regulated by the government. Such regulations will make everyone’s lives better. The only thing needed here to shed the hypocrisy, and accept the hard facts, and change our attitudes.
Legalizing does not mean that we have to make prostitution or pornography fashionable or glamorous profession. The sanitary workers in municipal will most probably not do that job if they have a better opportunity. However someone has to collect the garbage. Without them, a city won’t function. Likewise, the prostitutes are sort of garbage collectors and porn is garbage dump or sorts. They collect the garbage of sexually deprived men and recycle their perversions in a way that their ‘garbage’ will not become a problem to the society. Can anyone argue against my claim that without prostitutes and porn in the equation, the streets will become more dangerous to women? Won’t the sexually frustrated men now be looking to find more victims in public places and public transport, now that they don’t have any other means of dumping down their garbage?
PS: Whenever I speak for the social acceptance of prostitution, one question that is almost always asked back from me is that "Do you approve your daughter becoming a prostitute? If not, why do you want to let someone else's daughter becoming one"? I would say, that with this question, the conservatives just try to push emotion buttons of people, without addressing their logic. Not only prostitution but there are many other "socially accepted" professions that I don't like my daughter to take up. For example, I don't like her to become a model, actress or even an air-hostess. However, my taste about professions for my daughter is not the criteria for deciding what professions should be legal and what should not.
Rather than about my daughter, it about everyone's daughters. We don't want anyone's daughter to become a sex slave. We know that sex slavery cannot be stopped by condemning and banning prostitution. On the contrary, we know that such approach leads to the very existence of sex slavery in the underworld. We want sex workers to lead a life that everyone else is entitled to live.