There’s a new campaign out to rescue the whores. This time, the convoluted storyline designed to pluck at your heart- and purse-strings is one where the strippers you thought were making a living by dancing for your pleasure are actually in the first stage of being “forced” into prostitution and all the Bad Things that the campaign video is trying to get you to intuit, with no evidence of causation or result.
The campaign also fails to distinguish exotic dancing and legalized prostitution from sex trafficking, but it does its best to frighten the viewer into becoming saddened and disgusted at this fabricated storyline about these conveniently invisible people. Donate now and save the whores!
It is the saddest of ironies that the campaign doesn’t tell you how they will be spending your well-intended donation; make no mistake, however, that your donation was extracted by Stop the Traffic’s exploitation of the stories of thousands upon thousands of sex workers who are not, in fact, being trafficked.
Irish sex worker, writer and activist Eithne Crow explains it best on her blog:
In conflating the two, campaigns like these unfortunately create setbacks for sex worker rights activists and campaigns, and make it harder for sex workers who are trying to lobby for the kind of legal structures that would allow them to work more collectively and more safely in improved working conditions. It also gives weight to the myth that sex trafficking is everywhere, and that the industry is so rife with it that we need to close the whole thing down, when the truth is that we have little to no real data on human trafficking. The epidemic you think you ‘know’ to be real is based on figures that have literally been plucked out of thin air.
Read her post in its entirety here.
If you want to make a real difference – both in the lives of trafficked persons in prostitution and in the lives of those who perform erotic services to make their own living – donate here. Make a real difference, not a symbolic gesture.