Decriminalization Petition

I’m not sure how much good online petitions do, but here’s one to the president for the decriminalization of prostitution.  Since that issue is handled state by state I don’t think the president can really do anything, but it doesn’t hurt to let him know that there are people who support the idea.

7 Responses

  1. Mags what do you think of nullification to repeal prostitution laws?

  2. You mean jury nullification, or nullification in the sense of cities denying police departments money to enforce the laws, or another kind?

  3. If the federal government passes legislation decriminalizing prostitution, then states would have to decriminalize it since federal law supercedes state law.

  4. Technically, the federal government can’t decriminalize prostitution because (except for a few specific offenses like “prostitution near a military base”) there is no federal law against prostitution. But the federal government can exert lots of pressure when it wants to, such as it did a while back when every state was forced to “independently” declare a holiday for Martin Luther King’s birthday.

    It is my stated belief that decriminalization will come not by legislative action but by court order, just as Roe vs. Wade and Lawrence vs. Texas did.

  5. The federal government has deemed prostitution a criminal offense, making it an illegal activity.

    When the Mann Act (White-Slave Traffic Act) was passed June 25, 1910, the primary intention was to address human trafficking, immorality and prostitution. “The law was so broadly worded that courts held it to criminalize many forms of consensual sexual activity.” (quote taken from: http://www.pbs.org/unforgivableblackness/knockout/mann.html)

    If you dig up the state prostitution laws, you will find that they all were enacted after 1910 – for instance, Michigan prostitution laws were enacted in 1931.

    I realize that the punishment for prostitution is the responsibility of states (just as possession of marijuana is), but in essence, the federal government has to decriminalize prostitution.

  6. It’s complicated. I don’t think the U.S. government has any laws explicitly criminalizing prostitution, like it does for marijuana and other illegal drugs. However, the government certainly encourages the criminalization of prostitution through some of the language in the Mann Act, Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act, and President’s Emergency Fund for AIDS Relief

  7. We’re working on the brief now-anybody wanna help raise big bucks for attorney fees?

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