Intro to Women's Studies 2010

etsu: 2011-2014

Let’s talk about sex work.

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The idea of prostitution has been imbedded in my mind as negative, forced work onto women. Do not get me wrong, sex trafficking is a very real situation that should be controlled and stopped but what about the workers who want to be in it? I do not believe I have even heard of the idea of a prostitute wanting to be a prostitute. This idea is not a myth though, it is a reality. There are a number of sex workers wanting to work  in the sex business.

In the film, Scarlett Road, film makers take a closer look at the life of Rachel, a sex worker activist. Rachel not only likes her job, but uses it to spread awareness. She is a part of an organization called, Touching Base. This group helps disabled people have an option to meet with a sex worker to fulfill whatever needs they desire. 

If this is new to you, it is to me as well. I realized watching the film that some of it was disturbing to me. Why? I could not figure it out. Then it dawned on me, our society has segregated those with disabilities as almost none human. If Rachel was only meeting clients without a disability, it would not have shocked me one bit. These individuals are just as human as you and I. They crave intimacy, every human does. Intimacy could be holding hands, a hug, even just a conversation. Rachel, and others in this field are performing that service for them. It is not as twisted as some may think. Yes, they look and communicate differently but don’t we all? 

Our society needs to open up to the idea of prostitutes wanting to make a career out of sex work. Whether it contradicts with your beliefs or not, it is a real issue. I think these workers should fight for their rights in this business. Rape and assault can happen and it should not be pushed aside because of your occupation. Those with disabilities should have the option to explore their desires with a sex worker if that is the only choice they have.

I am afraid our society places both groups almost subhuman. We must start breaking the barriers and realize they are just as human as the rest of “normal” humans.

I applaud Rachel and Touching Base for exposing some unknown truths about this industry and these problems in society. 



Author: reganrs

I am a Mass Communication student at East Tennessee State University. While in college, I have discovered a love for discussion, writing, and technology. A couple of my blogs are for my classes while my latest one is an outlet for me to express my opinions are various issues. Enjoy.

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