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Mixed Nuts

In case anyone other than me finds this sort of thing funny, the Eugene Weekly letters page has kicked off one of their semi-annual hissyfits over the erotic chat and “escort” services that run in the back by the personal ads. The impetus, this time, was this piece, which I swear I have seen run a dozen times in one form or another since I’ve lived here.

Best quote, courtesy of one Christopher Logan:

I turn gingerly to the back pages, hoping that “No Exit” will make me laugh, which it often does. But I know that in those pages, girls I’ve never met are going to be staring at me, and they WANT ME BAD. Only they don’t. They want a hundred bucks or whatever. They want to exploit me and have no interest in my feelings or personality beyond what it takes to acquire what I’ve worked hard all day to earn.

Can you hear the tiny violins playing? It seems a little much to expect interest in feelings and/or personality from hookers, really. Also, No Exit can bite me.

(Incidentally, I realise that pointing this out makes me a bad person, but one of the correspondents this time is even named “McWeeny”.)

As to the piece by Schmidt, there absolutely are issues to be raised about sex workers’ rights, coercion, and abuse. (In each of these cases, incidentally, the prohibitionist mindset cannot be said to have done anything whatsoever positive for women’s rights.) Unfortunately, as long as people like Schmidt blithely conflate pornography with prostitution with sexual violence, shamelessly describe the sex industry as “enslavement and exploitation” or “sexual slavery”, and – hey, why not? – make comparisons to white supremacists, I don’t think those issues are ever going to make it to the table.

UPDATE: With regard to the Logan quote, Courtney points out that interest in your feelings or personality will probably only cost another $25.

  1. Anna says:

    The only thing I want to hear addressed by EW on this subject is the meaning of “very open minded and discrete.” Is Wendy a series of points unconnected by a line, or what?

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