In class we talked about women and sex work. I feel that women who do sex work aren’t really doing anything wrong. I feel that if its what they want to do to make money then they should be able to. I don’t see anything wrong with it. For example if a women is out stripping at night, that doesn’t mean that she is wanting to do that for the rest of her life. She can be doing it to support her family or pay her way through school. Although I must say that I do think that it is wrong if a women is forced to do sex work. I don’t agree with that
After discussing sex work in class it is clear that this is a controversial topic, one that can be viewed as both an advantage and disadvantage for females worldwide. We looked specifically from the perspective of sex work being a labor issue and a form of violence- and I believe it to be both. In terms of labor, the issue arises from the fact that women are selling their bodies for money. This is immoral and no individual should have to degrade them self to this, causing such a loss of self-worth and dignity, just for money. Also, I believe it to be a form of violence. For those females who do not give consent to it, it is extremely physically and mentally abusive. And even for those women who choose to engage in sex work – it is still emotionally and psychologically harmful.
For the majority of these women, sex work is a choice forced upon them due to money issues; however this forced choice does not simply diminish the violence experienced. Yes, I understand that some women feel as though sex work is their only option to survive or to provide for their family, but it is not a wise or moral solution. The effects upon these women lie deeper than physical harm; subconsciously, they begin to believe their bodies are their only asset and as a result start to lose sight of who they really are. Sex work would most likely cause feelings of worthlessness and low self-esteem as well as diminishing a woman’s honor, dignity and self-respect.
The gender wage gap is an index of the status women’s earnings relative to men’s and is expressed as a percentage and is calculated by dividing the median annual earnings for women by the median annual earnings for men. This data is based on year around workers and excludes part time and seasonal workers. Most women work part time jobs which lead to lower pay and fewer benefits. Studies have shown that to every dollar a man earns a woman earns 77 cents. If women in the workplace earned as much as men, their annual family incomes would raise and poverty rates would be cut in half. Overtime, women throughout history have been demeaned by men or seen as less important. Just until the 20th century, women received the right to vote after many protests and demonstrations were held by supporters of women’s’ rights. I don’t agree with men and women that perform the same job to be paid different salaries based on gender; unless seniority or skills are factors in determining pay. Women spend a lot of their lives working in and outside of the home and should receive equal pay and benefits, as well as respect in the workplace.
When I was reading about how women were involved in prostitution, pornography, and other sex related work I was suprised. I realize that women have to work to support their families in this economy. I also realize that this can be a very daunting task. However, I wish that women could find an alternative way of making money instead of selling their bodies. Jobs right now are extremly hard to find and I believe that is a reason for why some women turn to prostitution. I also think that if a women had chosen this lifestyle that ultimatly it is their decision but you can only be a prostitute for so long before you quit making money and become old. Women would not have to worry about this is they were able to find a job.
Is sex work wrong? This is a question that troubles many feminists and makes them, in a sense, turn on each other-like taking different political sides. In this blog post, I am going to tell you my view on sex work. Even though sex work might be regarded as morally wrong, it gets food on some families’ tables. Some women do this work by choice, but others do it to provide for their families. I would rather a woman be performing sex work and making money so that her children have something to eat, rather than a woman not being able to prostitute, therefore her children go hungry. An example of the misfortune cast upon women because of the illegalization of sex work can be found by looking at conditions in Cambodia. “[T]he U.S. government has pressured some countries to criminalize all prostitution, a proposal that has resulted in disastrous conditions for women in Cambodia with evictions, detentions and reported police abuse” (p 447). Along with the money, there are also danger that come along with sex work. However, if we decriminalize this type of work and begin to bring about social justice for these workers, “we can begin to advocate for rights in [their] workplace, to fight discrimination, to protect [them] and find recourse when violence is committed against [them]” (p 448). If we do all of these things to make sex work more safe, it is still morally wrong, but it will make an easier, safer way for some women to make ends meet.
I find it extremely odd that feminism groups advocate women working in sex related jobs. To me, that is degrading to women and that lowers the standards of being a woman by participating in sex work. If feminism groups want whats best for women and women to have equal rights as men, why are they advocating women doing these things? I understand that women might need extra money here and there, but I don’t really agree with working in sex related jobs. I could never do that. Carol Leigh states, “Other feminist groups advocate for anti-trafficking laws to protect persons forced into any type of labor-whether farm laborers or sex workers”(Leigh 447). This is how i think all feminist groups should be. To want to help women by bringing them up, not lowering their standards to make more money. By doing these sex acts with multiple partners, these worn can face jail time and STD’s. I don’t think they realize the consequences of what they’re doing.
Throughout the time we have been discussing women’s work, whether it be inside or outside of the home, I’ve come to one common conclusion that it has changed over time. Luckily for us, we are now able to hold well-paying jobs outside of the home and not be limited to the duties of simple clerical work or household chores. While we have been discussing this I have looked to my mother and my father as a means of comparison. Both of my parents hold outside jobs yet they still both contribute to the house work such as vacuuming and dishes. Despite that, my mom usually tends to the inside work and my dad usually tends to the outside work such as mowing and pressure-washing the house. Now, that is only because he is physically stronger than my mom and can manage such tasks. He still helps my mother with chores that are completed inside the house as well. I can’t help but thank all of the women in the generation before me that have given me an actual opportunity to hold a paying job.