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Legalizing Prostitution: Arguments For and Against


Prostitution has become an international growing concern owing to its impact to the society and religion. Every government in the world has responded differently to this issue of prostitution with others proposing for legalization while others prefer it to be illegal. All religions in the world do not support prostitution as it is seen as an immoral behavior that has no place in the society (Karras, 2006). However, some governments have legalized prostitution because it has been identified as a potential source of revenue through tax collection.

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The booming business of prostitution involves a chain of people who buy and sell prostitutes. All over the world prostitution business seems to be growing and expanding to very high levels in towns and cities. The major concern about prostitution is that it has continued to develop into a full-time business venture although there is no law that has legalized it in many western and eastern countries. As such, people have been forced to debate whether prostitution should be legalized or it should be illegal throughout the world.

Prostitution should be illegal

Prostitution should be made illegal based on the religious and moral uprightness of the act in the world. Every religion in the world considers the selling of one’s body to earn money as morally wrong (Potterat, 2010). Even the prostitutes who are religious staunch members are aware of this immoral act. The holy books used by the different religions require that each individual should put some effort to earn a living, but prostitution should not be an option for the effort.

Prostitution in the society is an avenue for spreading sexually transmitted diseases and it diminishes the importance of a woman. Areas where prostitution is practiced have been associated with evil forcing business around such places to decline. Additionally, the act of prostitution leads to harassment of men because any man who passes around such places is treated as a client when he may not be one. This greatly reduces the value of women in the society as they are only perceived as objects for sex (Lydia, 2005).

Illegal drugs and drug abuse are among the consequences of allowing prostitution to take root in the society. Prostitutes and their clients can be influenced to take up drug trafficking as a means of earning money. This is a threat to the environment and the future generation because drugs have a negative impact to the society. Also, widespread prostitution has a negative impact in the development of young children because it creates awareness about their sex life when they are still young. This has been observed in many countries in the world where the new trend in prostitution shows that underage children have started this behavior. Such children end up contracting STDs or losing hope in life altogether. The economic potential of legalizing prostitution should not be used to enact a law because there will still be illegal prostitution. Also, a society where prostitution is legalized will increase the demand for the act which has a high medical risk to the clients. Therefore, prostitution should be illegal.

The increased number of business chains dealing in the prostitution business is an enough proof that the business has a wide economic prospect (Phoenix, 2011). Many people depend on prostitution to earn a living because of the high unemployment levels in the world. Governments should legalize the act to ensure that the business is done in a better environment to create employment and earn revenue for the country. For example, in Holland prostitution is legal and the gross domestic product has recorded an improvement because of proceeds from the business (Rollo-Koster, 2002). Through legalizing prostitution, the business can be controlled to address health and environmental concerns.

Every prostitute should be given a license to do business after she has passed the medical tests and clients too should be tested before the act to ensure that the business is safe. The biggest challenge faced by prostitutes is being exploited by their clients and brokers. Sometimes they are not paid after the service or they are underpaid by their owners. This can be regulated through legalizing the act and formulating standard guidelines for the business to improve the prostitutes’ employment rights. Prostitution has existed for many years even in countries where it is not legal. The only approach to control prostitution is through legalizing the act because it cannot be prevented.

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My opinion

In my opinion prostitution should not be legalized because it contributes to undesirable effects to the society. It downgrades the value of a woman and contributes to divorce among married people. Through this debate, I have learned that prostitution is real and cannot be prevented. Prostitution is not allowed in any religion because of its moral obligation. Even where prostitution has been legalized clients still consider it an immoral act and will do it undercover. However, after critical thinking about this issue it is better if it is not legalized because it brings more harm than good to the society.


Karras, R. (2006). Common Women: Prostitution and Sexuality in Medieval England. New York: Oxford University Press.

Lydia, L. (2005). Prostitution in Medieval Society: The History of an Urban Institution in Languedoc. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Phoenix, J. (2011). Making Sense of Prostitution, Basingstoke: Palgrave Publishers.

Potterat, J. (2010). Estimating the prevalence and career longevity of prostitute women. Journal of Sex Results 27 (2), 233–43.

Rollo-Koster, J. (2002). From Prostitutes to Brides of Christ: The Avignonese Repentises in the Late Middle Ages. Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies 31 (1), 110.

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