Home The Week in Links The Week In Links—August 23

The Week In Links—August 23


RIP Lusty Lady (Photo by Thomas Crown in 2005, via flickr)
RIP Lusty Lady (Photo by Thomas Crown in 2005, via flickr)

Veteran activist Emi Koyama writes in Shakesville about how her talk at the 38th National Conference of Men and Masculinities on the problems with anti-trafficking discourse was censored and how she and other women of color were subsequently harassed by a group of so-called “feminist men”, members of a group called the National Organization of Men Against Sexism, who co-sponsored the event.

Writing in In These Times, Melissa Gira Grant relates how the Philadelphia police’s transphobia contributed to the brutal murder of trans sex worker Diamond Phillips, and how Phillips was further violated after her death by the media’s misgendering.

San Francisco’s unionized and worker-owned peep show, the Lusty Lady, will be forced to close in less than two weeks, signalling the end of an important era in sex worker history. Does anyone “have a miracle up their butt” to save the place? The New Yorker gives us the real estate details behind this sad development.

Cameryn Moore tells everyone to “Shut Up About How I Should Talk About My Sex Work” in Thought Catalog.

It’s about time for Meghan Murphy to shut up about sex work, too. Porn is universally horrible, no matter what the lived experience of porn performers proves, but despite the carceral feminist lobby for laws that imprison millions of sex workers, there’s no feminist war against us? Oh, and rabble.ca can stop providing her with a venue for her vileness any time now.

On the other hand, rabble.ca did post a great summation by Joyce Arthur of the fifth national sex workers’ rights conference Desiree Alliance held in July in Las Vegas.

Malawi human rights organizations oppose a government decision to force suspected sex workers, pregnant women, and other groups to undergo forced HIV testing.

The Sunday Times, The  Guardian and the Daily Mail, aptly and none too affectionately nicknamed the Daily Fail by many, all want to know if your manicurist is a sex slave. Hurray for the promotion of more trafficking hysteria and all, but what we’d really like to see is a sober and substantive inquiry into the rights of migrant Vietnamese sex workers and other laborers. Forbes writer Tim Worstall comes to the rescue, taking issue with the Guardian’s blown up trafficking stats. (Now, if only he’d stop using words like “tarts.”) Indeed, the Guardian, after being questioned by its own Reality Check blog, sheepishly included a postscript to the article amending some of their claims.

In a similar story, a researcher looking for funding tells tales of horror about First Nation women smuggled on to Ontario ships and “sold” into sex trafficking in Minnesota. We’d like to hear from the Native women themselves, thanks.

Ex-dominatrix Nichi Hodgson concludes in The Independent that both Brooke Magnanti’s ex-boyfriend Owen Morris’ accusation that her escorting past is a fraud and the furor over the sexting between Hugo Scwhyzer and porn performer Christina Parriera boil down to one thing: how nervous men get when women write about sex work.

Cambodian anti-trafficking NGO Sisha faces allegations of financial impropriety.

Sex worker representatives from thirteen states affiliated to All Indian Network of Sex Workers (AINSW) met in New Dehli to launch a national campaign calling for decriminalization.

Oh, and here’s something new! A whole bunch of sensationalism around the “secret double life” of slain escorting mom Paige Birgefield.

Yet more coverage on Switzerland’s drive-in sex box project. Sex work researcher Laura Agustin notes in her blog that these boxes aren’t really such big news–similar booths have been used in Germany and the Netherlands for sex work transactions for years. She also notes a recurring problem with such sex trade regulation: “What isn’t mentioned…is that, whenever this sort of plan arises… numerous street workers simply refuse to transfer their activities to the regulated zones, which are always far away from bustling areas if not in downright deserted ones. ”

Katie Halper tells sex workers why the sex boxes are good for them in a Policymic piece that should have been written by a Swiss street worker. No quotes from actual sex workers here, though.

The Edinburgh New ran a pro-decriminalization op-ed by Anastacia Ryan of Scottish sex workers’ rights organization SCOT-PEP.

Doesn’t the Bristol Magistrates Court have anything better to do besides policing the raunchiness of strip clubs?

Anarchafeministwhore defends the right of those diagnosed with mental illness to do sex work from Mia Freedman on Libcom.org.

The Las Vegas Review-Journal’s headline reads: “TV Producers Ogle Strip Joint As Reality Show.” Enough said.

Alexis Grenell’s opinion piece in the City & State explains why condemning Eliot Spitzer for seeing escorts is patronizing to sex workers. Condemn him for his support of legislation which locks sex workers up, instead.



  1. Don’t forget Jennifer Aniston’s hideous remarks in Glamour about sex workers:

    “Not a lot of strippers want to be stripping, you know. I think strip clubs are disgusting. I’ve just never been able to wrap my head around it. Guys are going in there to basically become aroused by another woman? And somehow that’s OK? … Though I’m gonna insult a whole group of women if I say stripping is disgusting. I also think it’s not very hygienic in there. I mean, my Lord. … Strippers just look bored to me. They’re just acting.” (source: http://www.fishwrapper.com/post/2013/08/09/jennifer-aniston-strip-clubs-were-the-millers-interviews-strippers/)

    I wrote to Glamour about it, because aside from the obvious flaws, the whole thing reeked of hypocrisy. Aniston is playing a stripper in her new movie – somehow that’s okay but doing it for a living isn’t.

    • Yeah, and she’s totally okay with exploiting the stripper theme to get plenty of hype out there about the movie, down to like a dozen articles penned about her “stripper diet.”

      • I subscribed to Glamour for years and they have a very long history of making ugly remarks about sex workers in their pages. Even on pages dealing with fashion or completely non sex-related things. Obviousy their tone hasn’t changed.

        Granted, this is Jennifer’s remark and not Glamour’s, but it reflects the magazine’s attitude toward sex workers perfectly.


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