BEYOND MERE SURVIVAL


rainbow at the AMC!!!
July 22, 2009, 6:34 pm
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beautiful rainbow outside of the AMC conference 2009 in detroitDSC02556



AMC 09-thoughts- part one: discussions onsex trade
July 18, 2009, 2:21 pm
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I am at the fabulous Allied Media Conference in Detroit, and are getting my brain bombarded by information, inspiration and getting a sense of all the amazing thing that people are doing around the country.

One of the workshops focused on sex trade, the history of $pread magazine and thoughts on selling sex. One of the shortcomings of the AMC is that sometimes one way of thinking about an issue become what is obviously acceptable, and any other discussion is self-censored.

nobody wants to be the asshole, of course, that says the unpopular thing, or draws negative attention to themselves. The dominant discourse I perceived during the sex trade workshop was that selling sex is a good thing, and that the media only tells stories of the “tragic prostitutes”. I felt conflicted. On one side I believe women ( and any person really) should be able to make whatever choice they feel is good for them, as long as they are not being hurtful to others.

At the same time it seems that the empowerment that happens through sex trade is one that happens within a system of disempowerment, of bodies being objectified, of one person holding a disproportionate amount of power in the sex trade relationships. saying that sex trade is good just seems too simple. even for the people that choose to sell sex, how much of it is a choice, when selling sex is pretty much the only way to make a livable wage?

People close to me throughout my life have engaged in selling sex at different points of their lives and for different reasons, but it was never simple, and for all of them, something that was hard and often left them feeling not so great. it might be just because of the stigma against trading, that i do not know. 

someone also brought up how divisive sex trading is within the feminist community, and proposed that such division is mainly a fluff story overblown by the media. It seems people have different views and feelings about selling sex, which is ok, i think. what is vital is that people that sell sex, whether because of choice of not, are not stigmatized and made to feel like shit about it. 

I still think i can be doubtful that sex trade is empowering, and absolutely respect the people that do it, accept and support their choices, and also support a society where people have more choices, and do not have to engage in sex trading as the only feasible mean to feed themselves, or pay rent, or afford medical care, or care for their kids.