Preferably forgotten is the slime trail left by widespread prostitution that fouls the highways and byways of Spain. The laws that once governed public morality were fed into the Spanish parliament’s shredder. Prostitution, like incest, was removed from the statute books as being a crime.
Some will claim it is none of our business if, in exchange for a little pin money or college fees, the strumpet can hold her hand out after what comes naturally. The truth is far different.
Prostitution in Spain is legal and unregulated; pimping is illegal but largely tolerated. It is estimated that between 200,000 and 400,000 women work as ‘street workers.’ Taking advantage of Spanish tolerance hundreds of thousands of women and young men are shipped to Spain from South America, Eastern Europe and Russia and Africa. Often this is done under pretext of a legitimate job, perhaps in the tourist industry. On arrival their passports may be confiscated and they are caught in a vice of immigrant illegality and their sordid trade.
For the mafias who trade in them, like the slave-dealers of old, the trade in human flesh is as lucrative as dealing in drugs. It is commonplace to see virtually naked teenagers offering themselves at the side of the roads and on roundabouts. Many are Illegal immigrants and off the radar and so their criminal masters control their lives.
In the Spanish border town of La Jonquera, so many street workers littered the pavements that Europe’s largest 101 room brothel was provided for their activities. Hookers are charged €70 per night. Other local authorities responded by setting up areas where prostitutes are allowed to sell their services without harassment; usually industrial estates.
Throughout Spain there is public anger at the prevalence of prostitution; urban areas are shunned or local residents turn vigilante. They often take their protests to the police and local seats of government. The authorities respond but dealing with the problem is like nailing jelly to the wall. One police officer says: ‘These women, and the people who pimp them, do not pay the fines; they have no bank accounts; they have no fixed abode.’
It is high time for Spanish legislators to follow examples set by Sweden, Norway and Finland, where prostitution is illegal. But, it is the client, not the prostitute, penalised by hefty fines and possible prison sentences.
Prostitution is a front for money laundering, tax evasion, criminality, paedophilia, political and other forms of corruption; blackmail. It fuels exploitation, cruelty, slavery, venereal disease, drug abuse and body trading.
Prostitution is not a victimless crime. It is one of the few crimes in which both parties are victims. Those who use them demean themselves, open themselves to blackmail, social ostracism, and ruin their self respect and their reputations. Is there a solution? Yes; get the message across loud and clear. Real men do not use prostitutes.