Busting the John Instead of the Hooker - Good Policy or Potential Disaster?

Discussion in 'Law and Justice System' started by George Costanza, Aug 29, 2010.

  1. George Costanza
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    George Costanza A Friendly Liberal Supporting Member

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    Police set up a sting operation with a sexy, female cop posing as a hooker. She lolls around a street corner, smiling at passing motorists. When a john pulls up, she engages him in conversation designed to get him to offer her money for sex. When he does, he is then busted. The idea is, if they arrest the johns, they will force the hookers to find some other form of work.

    But what about the aftermath of all this? Most of the time, the john is some lowlife who is out looking to get laid by a hooker. This guy has nothing going for him and very little to lose by being busted for solicitation.

    But, all too often, the potential customer is not just some lowlife with nothing to lose. All too often, he is a married man with a family, a good job, and a great deal to lose by being arrested for solicitation. In many communities, the local newspaper takes great delight in publishing the names of men arrested in prostitution sting operations, the idea being that public shame will deter other, potential offenders.

    So what happens to the businessman who gets caught soliciting a "hooker" for a quick blow job or some such? Potentially, a great deal. The immediate, legal consequences are obvious: arrest, guilty plea, probation, fine, conviction on record until expunged. But what about the other consequences to a man of substance? Potentially - divorce, loss of job, possibly loss of career, loss of children, financial disaster and, in some extreme cases, death by suicide caused by depression over everything that happened because of the arrest, prosecution and conviction.

    On balance, is this right? Is it fair? Consider what happens to a hooker if they bust HER for engaging in prostitution. Very little. She is taken to the station and booked. If she has a pimp, the pimp bails her out and she is back on the street within a matter of hours. She may ultimately have to pay a fine (that is, her pimp has to pay the fine as a practical matter), she may have to do a day or two in jail, end of story. To the hooker, it means very little, because she has very little to lose.

    I submit that the potential harm to the man of substance who gets caught in one of these operations is far, far worse than the potential harm to the hooker. Yet, our system seems totally oblivious to this fact. It doesn't care. I think it should care. I think that a little weighing and balancing should be done on a very realistic and practical level, and the criminal justice system should recognize what is going on in this type of situation, and back off on "busting the john." Bust the hooker, if you want to continue to make prostitution illegal, but lay off the john. The punishment to him, all in all, is WAY out of proportion to the punishment for the hooker.

    This thread is prompted by a post MikeK made in the other thread on legalizing prostitution. I await, with interest, the comments on this OP.
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2010
  2. marv
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    marv Resident Grandpa

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    Good idea.

    Some products, like prostitution, pose health and crime hazards. All products require a market. Take away the market, and the hazards go with it.
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  3. George Costanza
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    George Costanza A Friendly Liberal Supporting Member

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    True - but, in this case, shouldn't the potential harm to the male customer be considered, since it is so out of proportion to the crime committed? Compare the potential harm to the real criminal here - the hooker herself. Very little potential harm to the hooker as a practical matter.
  4. zzzz
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    zzzz Just a regular American

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    George, George, George! :cuckoo::cuckoo: So a man of substance gets a better deal because he has money? You are saying there should be a double standard here. That is un-American! Are not all humans equal? Should we all not be treated the same? If a rich man kills someone should they be slapped on the wrist while the poor man is executed? A crime is a crime and prostitution and soliciting for prostitution is illegal. The rich man or man of substance as you say it, will always get the better deal in court because they can hire the best lawyers. This double standard already exists, do you want to take it further and create 2 laws, one for the rich and one for the everday working man?

    :cuckoo::cuckoo:
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2010
  5. LuckyDan
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    LuckyDan Sublime

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    The man of substance knows what he is risking. If he doesn't have a wife or GF, he should just pick up a copy of Playboy - or Marie Claire - and be done with it. Privately. Legally.
  6. Baruch Menachem
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    Baruch Menachem '

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    Prostitution seems to cause a host of problems around it. As it general rule, it seems that when you want to end a market, it is more effective to remove the customer from the equation than the supplier.

    The drug market is a great example of this. As long as the customer base is constant, the supply will come in. No mater what the interdiction methods.

    The Reagan policy on cocaine and the Kennedy Johnson policy on opium derivatives caused problems way beyond just the enforcement on the streets, and hurt US foreign policy.

    Make it expensive for the johns, the hookers will go away. There are always more hookers, but the supply has to meet the demand. Reduce the demand, you reduce the supply.
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  7. rdean
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    It's all bad policy.

    If "purchasing pussy" were legal, you could tax it and make it "safe". Both by making sure the girls weren't ripped off, and by keeping a check on disease. It would also remove the "criminal" element.

    But it's all about those "fake" morals.

    We are against abortion and equal rights for gays but:

    Palin Slashed Funding for Teen Moms

    Starve the poor, they’ll stop breeding

    Vitter receives standing ovation at Southern Republican Leadership Conference after trysts with many prostitutes.
  8. George Costanza
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    George Costanza A Friendly Liberal Supporting Member

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    You are missing the point. Let's take your side of the argument - so a man of substance should get a worse penalty because he is a man of substance? With all due respect, that's not a very conservative argument. I thought you guys were on the side of wealth and power. Where are all of my "hate crime legislation violates equal protection" friends when it comes to this argument?

    The way things stand now, there are 2 laws - one for the hooker and one for the john, and the john gets by far the worst of it.
  9. George Costanza
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    George Costanza A Friendly Liberal Supporting Member

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    How expensive? Loss of marriage? Loss of marriage and children? Loss of marriage, children and job? Loss of marriage, children, job and career? Where do we stop?

    First off, prostitution should be legal. So long as our blue-nosed, hypocritical society doesn't want it that way, then bust the hookers, not the johns.
  10. rdean
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    No, for many women, it's the only thing they know. When they are punished for it, they have nothing. That's the terribly sad reality.
  11. George Costanza
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    George Costanza A Friendly Liberal Supporting Member

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    Here comes the closest to the best answer so far. Yes, Mr. Good Guy does know what he is risking. Still, I think the punishment is too much for him - precisely because he does have so much on the line. Don't forget, a man's a man, for all that . . .
  12. George Costanza
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    Good point. But the answer to that is to legalize prostitution. As things now stand, most hookers laugh at being booked and released or the 5 to 10 days in jail they have to do when caught. Prostitution itself is a very sad thing - for the women involved, I'll sure agree with you there. But, as you say, they have nothing. So they have nothing to lose.
  13. xotoxi
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    xotoxi BANNED

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    I don't think it is the John's fault...nor the hooker's fault.

    I think it is the John's BALLS' fault.

    We should be crushing their testicles...this would cure the problem.
  14. logical4u
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    It is a tax, hello... You can't tax the prostitute because she (he) is slave labor and doesn't have any money. Prostitutes have the worst lives...., I digress

    It is a lot easier to get money for the _____ government by taxing (I mean fining) the johns. The media, the bottom feeders just do what comes naturally, they broadcast the fallen.
  15. rdean
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    Unless they have children or pets. Many do. Few laugh at being jailed for 5 days.
  16. George Costanza
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    If all the johns had to do was pay a fine, I wouldn't have put this thread up.
  17. Big Black Dog
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    If I was to be caught in a situation like this, I wouldn't want to be released from jail! My wife would kill me grave yard dead. Rightfully so. It would be very difficult to be seen in public by anybody I knew. I live in a small area and everybody knows everybody and just about everything right on down to the doctor that spanked your butt when you were born. News like this would travel very fast. The best way to prevent the obvious humility of getting caught is to not put yourself in the position in the first place.

    When I was in the Navy years ago, at an overseas port call, one of the sailors on the ship was in the company of a prostitute. During their encounter, she took out a straight razor and cut the end of his penis off. True story. Now, imagine the story this poor guy was going to have to give to his wife when he got home and out of the hospital? That is an extreme case of what I really want to say about all of this. You should never do anything in private that you would be ashamed of becoming common knowledge.
  18. LuckyDan
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    Well, yeah, it doesn't seem right that one bad decision should ruin a life - assuming Mr. Good Guy is not in the habit of paying pros. In that case, his legal problems should be the least of his worries. He's got an addiction, or a phobia, or whatever, but he's sexually off track.
  19. Samson
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    Busting the John Instead of the Hooker - Good Policy or Potential Disaster?

    The question, from my POV, is simple enough to answer: Potential Disaster.
  20. Baruch Menachem
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    If prostitution is a social problem and you want to make it go away, you use the most effective tools to take care of it.

    And if the johns knew that the cost was very high to them, then there be an end to the market. Arresting the girls has been the method for a long time. It has not worked. If the john sees he is risking his marriage and his job, he will not be in the market, and the problem will solve itself.

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