Thailand Sex Trade; overview on morality: The question of whether or not it is right for individuals to engage in the 'pay-for-pleasure' industry is as old as the hills. It is a very thorny issue and one that won't be resolved anytime soon. The problem is that different people can take perfectly rational, but opposing, viewpoints.
I'll start with the common arguments against the sex trade practise and then go on to the counter-arguments by those in favour. I won't try to colour the argument one way or another, and if you would like to add your own comments to the page, you are welcome to do so.
I would also encourage you to send in an entire article of your own on the subject (400 word minimum) for which I will add an entire page to the website.
Degradation: This is probably the most common argument that is put forward by those against the sex trade. They argue that the cumulative psychological effect of long-term exposure to this work is damaging to the girls' mental health. Selling your body in Thailand may be seen as acceptable when the girl involved needs the cash, but it is certainly looked down on as being a very low thing to do. Many of the girls start out in the profession with unrealistic hopes and dreams of meeting a wonderful rich westerner who will marry her and take care of her and her family, only to get lied to, have her heart broken and her dreams shattered. Many end up with drink and drug problems.
Exploitation: The argument here is that the girls are being unfairly taken advantage of due to their situation. Some feel that the rich Western man is coming to Thailand to take advantage of the poor economic circumstances that force women into the Thailand sex trade.
Disease: With HIV and other dangerous sexually transmitted diseases being well established in Thailand, some people argue that the dangers and irresponsibility of casual encounters in the sex trade puts lives at risk. There are some known cases where people who know that they are HIV positive have actually paid sex-workers for unprotected sex without telling the girls involved.
Over 1 million girls are estimated to be HIV positive in Thailand. Customers that use the services of the sex-workers may then put non-sex-workers at risk when they return home to their current or future wives/girlfriends.
Fat old losers: Some argue that it is only pathetic, sad, old, losers that engage in this sort of thing and that these disgusting individuals should feel ashamed of themselves and be forced to stop.
Degradation: This type of work is not alone in being degrading, cleaning toilets is degrading, and the pay is much lower. Damaging health effects are not a certainty and depend on the frame of mind of the individual involved. Whilst there is a danger of negative health effects, many occupations are dangerous - construction workers put their lives in danger every day on the job, nobody is arguing that construction work should be ruled out.
Exploitation: The counter-argument here points out that the poor economic circumstances that foster the sex trade have given women the ability to make much more money than alternative occupations. If women choose to engage, they are not forced, they are doing so because the alternative is worse. Taking sex-work away denies these women the ability to make money that is probably desperately needed for one reason or another. In many Thailand sex trade cases, it is the girl that ends up exploiting the westerner by getting him to send money to her each month while carrying on with other men. In other cases, the girl's hopes and dreams do come true when they do meet their future husband.
Disease: This one is a serious problem. The problem is made much worse by the girls and customers who are often prepared to take risks around the use of protection. However, if protection is used, it is highly effective at reducing risk. Additionally, some establishments regularly check the girls that work there for STD infections. Only non-infected girls are allowed to work. Proponents argue that, regardless of personal feelings on the subject, it is impossible to effectively stop the oldest of professions, so a better alternative would be to promote safety.
Fat old losers: This kind
of attack is completely unfair, untrue and irrelevant. This sort of
garbage usually comes out of the mouth of some frigid women's liberation
nutcase that ought to know better.
If you are considering a trip to Pattaya, and are intending to use the services of the ladies there, make sure that your hotel is 'guest friendly'. If it isn't, you'll have extra hassle and expense to deal with when taking a lady back to your room.
Like I said in the overview, the rights and wrongs on the whole Thailand sex trade industry are complex and there is no clear answer. People are divided on the subject.
There are, however, some things that I think everyone would agree on. Firstly, always treat the girl involved with the utmost respect. She knows full well that what she is doing is considered low, but she does it anyway and probably for the benefit of other people e.g. parents, child etc. Secondly, always pay what is owed. You usually pay in the morning after the deed is completed. Some scumbags think that this means they can just renegotiate the price, or just refuse to pay altogether. Lastly, always use protection... the reasons why are obvious but it is all too easy to take silly risks... especially if alcohol is involved!
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