Past Impacting The Present


Past Impacting the Present

Prostitutes wandering the streets to make their own money and provide for their pimps what a world we have. A prostitute is an individual who engages in sexual activity in exchange for money. Prostitution can start at any age, and or any gender. Further, prostitution is an ancient profession, often described as the world’s oldest profession. In an article called the History of Prostitution states, “the origin of prostitution is closely connected with the rise of the brothels and the development of the system of free love. No longer do all the girls, but only a certain few offer themselves to the frequenters of ´ houses for men.´”  The oldest brothels, houses to visit prostitutes, were found in ancient Egypt, where the government felt as though there should be a tax on the payment of sexual activity. It is also believed that the Egyptian brothels were not the first recorded sex professionals, those were in Sumeria, Babylonia. The difference was that the women did not have sex for money; they had sex for religious rituals. In the rituals, sex in the temple was meant to offer special blessings to the people who were having sex. The extensive history of prostitution has made an impact on the attitudes we have about it in society today. Today there are laws and regulations that affect prostitutes, police, pimps, children, and the society itself. Laws and regulations have grown out of historical traditions and events, which have shaped our laws for what they are today.


As previously mentioned, laws and regulations back in the day shape the society today. Under the rule of Hammurabi there were laws and or codes that were written specifically for prostitutes. Prostitutes were expected to be single and worth less than a married women. They couldn’t own anything of their own, and if they did own property, the property went to their brothers. The way people looked at prostitution historically have really influenced it today. Modern society has a very negative view of prostitutes as if they have no purpose. That view of prostitutes comes from Hammurabiś time and thinking and brothels and the misleading past among prostitutes. An article that included Hammurabi’s law against prostitution code 178 states, “ If a “devoted woman” or a prostitute to whom her father has given a dowry and a deed therefor, but if in this deed it is not stated that she may bequeath it as she pleases, and has not explicitly stated that she has the right of disposal; if then her father die, then her brothers shall hold her field and garden, and give her corn, oil, and milk according to her portion, and satisfy her.” This articulates that if a prostitute owns such properties given to her by her father and her father dies, she has to give it to her brothers and she is left with nothing. Back then prostitutes were not allowed to own things and were not privileged in any way. Now today they are still given less power, repeatedly being disrespected among all races and genders. That has happened because back then they did not have any power so today they still don’t and maybe they never will.

Laws and regulation are a big part of prostitution and why it is still continued today. Although in America, Nevada is the only state where prostitution is legal (with many restrictions to that status)  it is still widely practiced across the country. Today the government has clarified that a minor (under the age of 18 years), cannot be prosecuted for prostitution. This is an effort to protect children from exploitation with the understanding that they cannot really make the decision to be a prostitute willingly. They are trying to make the minor the victim instead of a criminal. Societies in other states would like it to be legal because it is a victimless crime, the societies feel that it is the right of an individual to use their body how they would like. Being a prostitute it is something that adults can chose to do. However as it is currently illegal, other crimes transpire while prostituting. Prostitutes can get abused, mistreated, they witness people being killed and drug related things and maybe even forced to take the drugs. They cannot report these crimes because they don’t want to get in trouble. In an article called ¨Prostitution Law¨  it states, “ To date, Nevada is the only state that allow any legalized prostitution. But, there are a number of groups lobbying for legalization of prostitution. Many of these groups point out that the act of sex exchanged for something of value is essentially a victimless crime, but because it is illegal, prostitutes are often exposed to a variety of other crimes which they cannot report to law enforcement for fear of arrest. Examples include rape, battery, muggings, and murder.” This quote demonstrates that Nevada is the only state where prostitution is okay,  in the rest of America it is illegal.

Since historical laws have impacted our laws today police have to uphold the laws. Prostitution is illegal in America except for Nevada so if the involvement in prostitution was either being a pimp or a prostitute they were to get caught  have to go to jail. Depending on what the person did, they would be sentence. Every state has  different sentences because different states have different state laws. When police take prostitutes in for prostitution they either know because they have seen the prostitute work or assume when someone is a prostitute and uphold off of that. There are cases in which police go undercover and try to bust the prostitution. In an article called ¨Undercover city cop and undercover sheriff deputy try to bust each other in prostitution sting¨ they state, “the Police department started to target the working girls. A number of male officers were sent to training for undercover work. These officers would check out the ads on sites like BackPage and call to arrange the meet up.” This shows that the police sometimes have to go above and beyond just to bust the women and possibly the pimps or buyers. The police do that because is such a problem and their job is to clean the streets so they do what they have to do to accomplish that.

One circumstance that keeps prostitution going today is the pimps who think they own an actual human being. A pimp is the person who controls the actions and lives of the businesses of one or more prostitutes.  Many protect their prostitutes to make sure nothing happens to them and some mistreat the prostitute and give them PTSD or make them feel like they have no value. An article called ¨Games Pimps Play: Mental Manipulation in Prostitution states, “Raphael said people recruited as prostitutes are often susceptible to this misuse of power because of abuse in their households. They long for affection.” This quote shows the reason why many of the prostitutes accept the mistreatment.  Prostitutes find what they have been long looking for in their own home if they ever had one and never could find. Some people may ask why are pimps pimps? In an articled called “9 Things You Should Know About Pimps and Sex Traffickers” they state, “Nearly one-third of the pimps interviewed said they entered the underground commercial sex economy because they grew up around it. Exposure to sex work as children made the trade seem like a normal, achievable means to earn a living. Studies have suggested that individuals that grew up in neighborhoods where prostitution was prevalent or have family members engaged in sex work sometimes enter the field.” Many pimps are pimps because it’s the only thing they have known since they were exposed to it at a young age. And that is all they know how to do. They may say that is the only way to make it how they live, in other words the only way to get by and maintain their standard of living.

Children’s involvement within prostitution has changed overtime due to because they are minors. Just this year the government has proposed a new law that would potentially protect the minor if he or she was caught in the act of sex working that they would not be sentenced. Many might say it is only allowing the child to continue to be a prostitute while people who support the law argue that the law helps the child’s future by not having that on their record or prosecuting them for something that may not even be their fault. In an article called ¨New Law Does Not Legalize Child Prostitution, “Beginning on Jan. 1, prostitution by minors will be legal in California. Yes, you read that right,” this means that any person under the age of 18 will be to have sex in exchange for money without being prosecuted. The same article states, “So teenage girls (and boys) in California will soon be free to have sex in exchange for money without fear of arrest or prosecution.” This will allow children to feel it is okay to be a prostitute because they will not get caught or be prosecuted while making their living. This might cause kids to drop out of school and other things that can potentially hurt themselves and their future.

Prostitution and the society have long been competing against one another, to determine which is right. Society itself has a big problem against prostitutes and prostitution. They have tried to get rid of it, and portray it to be something very terrible and dehumanize anything that it stands for. In an article called What Are The Social Effects Around Prostitution, it states, “Society has basically given up on eliminating prostitution. Therefore, in most major cities around the world, there are neighborhoods where prostitution is concentrated. Society drives prostitution into one part of town where prostitution can go “unseen” during the hours of the night. Society has became so messed up that they have just stop caring. Prostitution has become normalized so now it does not even matter whether it is bad or good  and now the society feel as though it should  just be kept out of their way. So exploit prostitution in a different area where it’s wanted and tolerated, generally in poor communities and where the people who live there do not have any power.

The laws and regulations from the past have shaped our present in ways that only make sense. Back in Hammurabi’s time prostitution was not accepted and the society did not treat the women like they were human. Prostitutes did not allow them to own things, they did not allow them in different areas. They were not liked or tolerated and were looked at differently from the average married woman. They were called whores and sluts and all kinds of  things. Now today it is not only women who are prostitutes people of all different ages, sizes, genders, and race. With this new law, things will change in the future around prostitution. If they are allowing minors to conduct in sexual activity in exchange for money. Who knows what else they will allow in this county. It matters because prostitution is revealed to be bad,  it should be addressed and taken care of.

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