Quote of the Week

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Quote of the Week

Let’s try a thought experiment. ‘Every year thousands of people are promised a job as a dancer, but sadly, they end up here.’ The curtain rises on someone working in a tailor’s shop. That doesn’t quite work the same way, does it? We don’t automatically assume that it would be sad to work in a tailor’s shop (because that would be a horrible and classist thing to assume) and we certainly wouldn’t represent the problem of some people suffering abuse in the textiles industry by showing images of someone  just doing their job. Nor would it make much sense to witness the dawning realisation of a potential customer looking in the window who will never again have a pair of jeans adjusted now he knows that some people in tailoring shops were promised jobs as dancers.

Eithne Crow takes on a video that claims to be anti-trafficking but is, unsurprisingly, mostly the same old anti-sex work propaganda we’re so regular exposed to.

Quote of the Week: Indoor Privilege Edition

Indoor sex work involves having access to the indoors. Do we not remember that this is an enormous privilege?

An “on and off” sex worker for 20 years, Fleur de Lit, takes on the recent decision by Ontario’s Court of Appeals with righteous anger and compassion. Though Judge Susan Himmel of the (lower) Superior Court recognized that current laws enhanced the existing vulnerability of outdoor workers, the Court of Appeals decided that laws were not the endangering force in street workers’ lives, citing instead “poverty, addiction, gender, race and age” as being the factors responsible for marginalization and subsequent risks. (And it would be ridiculous for the law to pro-actively recognize or mitigate those factors, right?) Their recent decision only legalized brothels; “communicating for the purposes of prostitution” is still illegal.

Fleur de Lit goes on to write:

Decriminalization won’t change the way that I work: carefully screening clients, asking my colleagues for references and working indoors. The onus of criminality has always been on my outdoor colleagues.

Quote of the Week

“…two years ago when we met at the Dusk Porna Award in Amsterdam. I was baffled to win it and asked Candida onto the stage to join me. After I handed her a bunch of flowers to thank her for all she had done for the sisterhood, I walked off stage, only to be called back by her with these words: ‘I am very happy to step aside and just honour you and all these wonderful filmmakers who are picking it up and doing it now.’ I was speechless and we hugged to thundering applause—a moment I will never forget. She was, as someone said on Facebook, the Grace Kelly of porn—a sophisticated and beautiful woman of incredible integrity, big enough to allow others to shine.”

—Fellow porn director Petra Joy in her obituary for Candida Royalle in The Telegraph

 

Quote Of The Week

[W]hat I’m talking about today is that conference after conference happens and personality after personality is elevated to having these super large platforms where they can speak, and there is a glaring absence of color when it comes to sex work.

Name me one person of color – and I’m not even talking about just Black people – one person of color woman, man, cis, trans, I don’t care, fat, skinny, ugly, pretty, tall, short, I don’t care. Name me one person of color who is or has been a sex worker who is a go-to personality to speak on sex work.

Nobody.

And that absence is deafening….I have a problem with the fact that we are continually erased and ignored – even though we’re here. Talking out loud! You can go on twitter, and you can follow them – They are intelligent, amazing, they have a presence! They will hook you… because they are wonderful people. And… and nobody really cares what we’re talking about…

But I think this conversation needs to evolve. Because if we keep it where it’s at, it’s stagnant and it’s not going to do any good.  It needs to evolve – and it needs to evolve with diversity. It needs to evolve with color. It needs to evolve with gender, and appearance, and weight, and all the things we ignore every day so we can put the white lady on stage again.

-Tits and Sass contributor Peechington Marie in “Be Careful With Your Hand, You Don’t Want It Bitten Off-Annie Sprinkle, Fantasies That Matter, Sex Work, And Erasure of People of Color” at her tumblr

Quote of the Week

I called my friend Amy and told her I feel trapped, and that I don’t think I can live my life if it’s just going to keep cycling back to having no options. And she was kind enough not to tell me why sex work is awesome, or to question my commitment to the movement, or to question whether I could really feel this bad about it. There is something really crazy-making about trying to pretend my feelings about sex work don’t matter, about continually tying the right of decriminalization to the obligation to be happy, when doing sex work makes me desperately unhappy.

…In The Promise of Happiness, Sara Ahmed traces the rise of happiness as a personal and cultural obligation. Happiness is “the good life,” and good people are the ones that make themselves and others happy.  But we live in a world in which some people’s “good life” is necessarily dependent on others’ exploitation. The obligation to be happy, for Ahmed, is the obligation to let that continue. The history of unhappiness  in the 20th century – as it has been told and recorded, in literature, memoirs and other archives – has been the history of resistance.

I’m not sure precisely what a sex positive feminist theory of prostitution that embraces unhappiness looks like, or could look like. But I’m tired of only ever seeing my feelings about sex work represented in abolitionist writing that doesn’t reflect my politics (or my basic need for survival, thanks bitches).

Sarah M.  in “Unhappy Hooking, or Why I’m Giving Up On Being Positive” on her exceptional and erudite blog, autocannibal