News and Views

News

Voices

Arts

Life and Work

Milestones

Submit your news

Submit commentary

Support us

Become a member

Advertising

Print advertising

Web advertising

About us

Contact us

Privacy Policy

The Commons
Voices / Letters from readers

How could prostitution, drugs, and pornography not be harmful?

Originally published in The Commons issue #437 (Wednesday, December 6, 2017). This story appeared on page D1.



RE: “The space between indifference and #MeToo” [Viewpoint, Nov. 29]:

My skin crawled when I read the following from writer MacLean Gander on sexual misconduct and the #MeToo movement:

“If we were an honest and genuine society and culture, we would cease the criminalization [...] of those human drives that fuel huge industries of drugs, prostitution, pornography. [...] It is fair and good to regulate conduct, but not to make it unlawful when it does no harm” (emphasis mine).

These statements are so wrong. Where to start?

The only illegal pornography would be that which involves underage children; pornography produced for adults is legal (see the Playboy Channel, Vivid Entertainment, and others that are required to keep records of the legal age of the participants).

We only need to look in the newspapers or around ourselves to see that drugs are clearly doing harm. People are dying, and lives are being destroyed.

Prostitution is very harmful, both to the prostitute and the client. The prostitute is exposing themselves to great danger — they are often interacting with a stranger and taking a huge chance with their personal safety. They can wind up beaten or even murdered.

Many prostitutes have someone who lines up clients for them and then takes most of their money away from them. The clients utilizing a prostitute may bring diseases home to a spouse or even their children.

I desperately hope I misunderstood the author’s phrasing. The author cannot possibly be urging that we decriminalize drugs and prostitution because they are “human drives” (which is another false assumption).

I hereby call upon the author to clarify, as I am certain I am not the only person who interpreted his comments in this way.

Sandy Golden


Hinsdale, N.H.

What do you think? Leave us a comment

Editor’s note: Our terms of service require you to use your real names. We will remove anonymous or pseudonymous comments that come to our attention. We rely on our readers’ personal integrity to stand behind what they say; please do not write anything to someone that you wouldn’t say to his or her face without your needing to wear a ski mask while saying it. Thanks for doing your part to make your responses forceful, thoughtful, provocative, and civil. We also consider your comments for the letters column in the print newspaper.