Sex Work

Prostitution Decrim Debated by New Hampshire Lawmakers

Three female lawmakers want to decriminalize prostitution in New Hampshire. But Rep. Dick Marston has "a problem with this bill from a woman's point of view."

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thephotographymuse/Flickr

New Hampshire legislators last week debated the merits of decriminalizing prostitution, in response to a bipartisan bill filed by state Reps. Amanda Bouldin (D-Hillsborough), Carole McGuire (R-Merrimack), and Elizabeth Edwards (D-Hillsborough). 

On Thursday, January 28, the New Hampshire Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee held a hearing on House Bill 1614, which removes all criminal penalties for "consensual sex between consenting adults" whether money is exchanged or not while making "any solicitation of sexual contact involving a person under 18 years of age or through the use of force or intimidation a felony." 

"We put forward this bill in response to Amnesty International's August 2015 recommendation that governments across the world decriminalize prostitution," said Edwards at a press conference before the hearing. "Amnesty International studied the issue for two years prior to the their recommendation," and their view is in line with the World Health Organization, the Global Alliance Against Trafficking in Women, Human Rights Watch, the Open Society Foundations, Anti-Slavery International, and other global human-rights groups.  

The New Hampshire bill is supported by U.S sex-worker rights groups such as Call Off Your Old Tired Ethics (COYOTE) Rhode Island, the U.S. PROStitutes Collective, and the Erotic Service Providers Legal Education and Research Project (ESPLERP), the group behind a lawsuit seeking to decriminalize prostitution in California. "This is groundbreaking," said ESPLERP President Maxine Doogan. "The criminalization of prostitution is a failed policy. The 'War on Sex' hasn't stopped anyone from buying or selling sex, but it has caused a lot of collateral damage, to poor women, women of color, and trans women. It's about time that the government stopped intervening in what consenting adults do in private."

COYOTE RI Executive Director Bella Robinson, who has been a sex worker for more than 30 years, testified before the New Hampshire committee in favor of the decriminalization bill. "The main reason I want to see prostitution decriminalized is because it is the only harm reduction model proven to reduce violence and exploitation in the sex industry," she said in a pre-testimony statement.

"It is crucial that sex workers can work together and share work space to ensure their safety," added Robinson, and "many sex workers utilize third party support staff to help keep them safe." But under current U.S. laws, these people "are legally classified as traffickers." 

To back up their positions, Doogan and Robinson point to research showing positive results in New Zealand since it decriminalized the sex trade in 2003. (Robinson explains more about New Zealand in the video below.)

But at the New Hampshire bill's initial hearing, several lawmakers were skeptical. Rep. John Martin (R-Merrimack) worried that high-school football players would move from "having a keg party after a victory to having a hooker party after a victory."

Rep. Edwards responded by pointing out that sex between adults and minors would still be illegal, no matter the gender of the minors. 

Rep. Dick Marston (R-Hillsborough) opposes the bill and is surprised by its introduction from female legislators, demanding they answer for the fact that some married men might cheat with sex workers. "I think I have a good handle on how my wife would feel if I used the services of a sex … prostitute," Rep. Marston said at the committee hearing, "how my wife would feel, and how many other women would feel when their husbands do that. [The bill] doesn't say that this is only good for as long as you're doing it with an unmarried man. I just have a problem with this bill from a woman's point of view." 

"You probably should not go see a prostitute, it would make your wife unhappy, I agree with that," responded Rep. Edwards. "But people [have sex] outside of marriage right now. … It's not like having a law that requires us to arrest sex workers means that everyone is faithful in their marriage." 

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  1. Rep. Marston said at the committee hearing, “how my wife would feel, and how many other women would feel when their husbands do that. [The bill] doesn’t say that this is only good for as long as you’re doing it with an unmarried man. I just have a problem with this bill from a woman’s point of view.”

    Sounds like you have a problem from a moron’s point of view, actually.

    1. His wife is going to have to put that chastity device back on his balls if this law passes. He says it’s uncomfortable.

    2. Shame on you for failing to respect his chosen identity.

    3. Apparently his deference to law and order is the only thing keeping him from cheating on his wife with a prostitute.

      1. I guess the real question is why he isn’t cheating without a prostitute.

        1. He may not know about Grindr yet.

          1. But he’s got *interns*.

        2. The mere fact that he calls them ‘sex prostitutes’ tells me he’s not ready.

    4. “[The bill] doesn’t say that this is only good for as long as you’re doing it with an unmarried man.”

      So…it should be illegal to have sex outside marriage if you’re married? Is he advocating adultery laws?

        1. Virginia still hasn’t. “For Lovers” my ass.

          1. ‘For Lovers Who Are In A Relationship Solemnized By The State And Church Of Your Choice’ doesn’t fit.

    5. This guy must know our man Eddie.

    6. Sounds like you have a problem from a moron’s point of view, actually.

      ^This. FWIW, our very own Eddie made the same argument, but I believe later retracted it, and petulantly so, under pressure.

    7. +1000 sex prostitutes

  2. “Rep. Dick Marston (R-Hillsborough) opposes the bill and is …”

    …a dick?

    1. That’s what’s known as an aptonym.

  3. Dick Marston is self-identifying as a female during this debate, and so it’s perfectly valid for him to have a woman’s point of view.

    If you deny this you an an oppressor.

  4. How exactly are police going to help exploited sex workers if they can’t arrest them?

    1. Believe it or not, this is actually the one logical argument that can be made. On balance I do NOT think it undermines the better argument to decriminalize but the theory is such: At least some (how many is clearly up for debate) of these sex workers are psychologically terrorized into doing this, to the point that they actually believe turning tricks for their pimp is an act of love. They are the very antithesis of possessing agency. The threat of prosecution (an opposing coercive force) is necessary to physically break them free from this abusive relationship and regain their agency through counseling and other support services.

      Of course, this is all predicated on counseling and support services even being available and the criticisms of the police being insensitive and untrained to the point of victimizing these people all over again are certainly not without merit.

      1. “The threat of prosecution (an opposing coercive force) is necessary to physically break them free from this abusive relationship and regain their agency through counseling and other support services.”

        Which would be effective if the detainee wasn’t working in a “snitches get ditches” environment.

        How well has this worked against organized crime or gang violence?

      2. So – we’ll threaten them with violence to cooperate with the police and leave the relationship they’re in due to coercion?

        1. I don’t disagree with you guys in terms of overall effectiveness (or lack thereof). The point that side of the debate makes – and which I think at least is pinned to some degree of logic – is that unless you can physically separate this victim from her/his victimizer, you will NEVER get them to regain their sense of self-worth and autonomy, much less provide evidence against the victimizer. Without it being a crime there is no basis for legal detention, even in a substance abuse and counseling environment. And this also may be a killing a fly with a flamethrower scenario. Not every sex worker has been coerced and deprived of agency and criminalizing an entire set of actions between consenting adults (which in and of itself can lead to the very abusive relationships you are trying to sever) seems a bit foolish.

      3. Your point is very important. In states where it is known women, often illegal immigrants, are being forced to work as sex workers, the states position is to make sure they take advantage of the states benefit system to provide for their health as much as possible. Not deport them, not arrest them, but to make available/make them strong enough to get out on their own should they choose to take the chance/risk to do so on their own.

      4. Hard to imagine that happening outside of a criminalized industry.

  5. ESPLERP

    I’ll take “Sex Sounds” for 200, Alex.

    1. I’ll take Swords for 400.

      1. Suck it, Trebek!

  6. This is why women should never have been allowed to vote to begin with. They will never know what’s best for them better than a man will.

  7. This is bad for 2 reasons.

    1. Social ‘justice’ warriors don’t like it because the sex workers are victims. They don’t want to be doing this no matter what they say. They’re just afraid to stop doing it because patriarchy. And notice the word ‘justice’ in social justice warriors. That means they are for justice. Who’s against justice? Why do you hate the children?

    2. If people can pay for sex, they’ll start thinking they can do anything they want. We can’t have people just thinking they can do anything they want or else anarchy, dogs and cats sleeping together, frogs leaving the water, locusts, moon turning to blood. Who wants that? Why do you hate the children?

    1. Wow, it’s bad for two SJW-related reasons, yet the only reason mentioned in the post is social conservatism. Sneaky SJWs.

      1. Fair enough, but even it the bill gains traction, I don’t see Gov. Maggie Hassan not vetoing it.

        1. If it passes and is not vetoed, at least we’ll get some entertainment from Vermont, Maine, and Massholio trying to sue NH for letting prostitution flow across their borders.

          1. Just let your sex flow,
            Like a mountain stream,
            And let your sex grow
            Like the smallest of dreams….

          2. I’m pretty sure that already happens.

            Anyway, that’s what the Mann act is for, isn’t it?

        2. Maggie Hassan is a stupid cunt and vetoes everything that is good. I wonder if NH Republicans will manage to actually put up a plausible candidate this year?

          1. As much as I have a distaste for political dynasties, I think Chris Sununu would be a smart choice.

            And, fuck, can you imagine Hassan in the Senate if she wins?

      2. “Wow, it’s bad for two SJW-related reasons, yet the only reason mentioned in the post is social conservatism.”

        Nicole, all social conservatism is a thing of the past and is never the cause of bad laws.

        Don’t you know anything? Everything bad comes from progressives.

        I think it’s funny how many people here think the main opposition to prostitution decriminalization comes from progressives when polls pretty clearly show there’s more opposition among Republicans and social conservatives than among leftists and Democrats.

        1. Progressives and women, Irish. Progressives and women.

          BUT I REPEAT MYSELF BADUM-TISS

          1. Pretty much.

            Except for married women, apparently. The pimp hand: strong enough for a man, but made for a woman.

        2. Irish, did I say that conservatives don’t oppose the legislation? I was only pointing out what was not already pointed out. I bash socons every bit as much around here as I do the progs, when I can find reason. In my personal experience, I give the progs some advantage for being really bad, but socons can be just as bad in a lot of instances, or even worse.

          I remember one time in particular that I had to go on the defensive around here after going on a tirade against socons over a thread at WaPo where they were wanting to turn CO into a prison camp for potheads, because I said that socons are as bad as progs.

          IOW, progs bad does not equate to socons good.

          1. progs bad does not equate to socons good.

            This. They both suck balls. Really, they’re just two sides of the same big government loving coin.

        3. It’s an uneasy coalition of progressives and SoCons.

          1. I’ve always said that progs and socons will gang up on libertarians at any given opportunity. It’s an evil alliance if there ever was one.

          2. I attended several Hill briefings on this very issue with members of this uneasy coalition. It’s also a constantly shifting coalition.

            At times I analogized it to making chili. Can we keep this level of cumin (Baptists) and just counter-balance with some more red pepper flakes (Third Wave Feminists)?

        4. It’s both sides, really. The nanny-state wings of both parties in collusion.

          Instead of “Baptists and Bootleggers”, call it “Baptists and Ball-busters”.

          1. No, it’d be a Baptist-Ball-busters and Bootleggers coalition. The Baptists supported Prohibition out of faith while the Bootleggers supported Prohibition because they made money of it.

    2. Actually I think the moron pol hit on the real reason prostitution remains illegal: married women. Strip clubs represent the compromise between men and women, not religious men and heathen men.

      1. Interesting point.

        I wonder, would he be okay with criminalizing cheating spouses? I mean, if the worry is that wives wouldn’t like their husbands cheating, then why not snip the problem at its root?

        1. then why not snip the problem at its root?

          This post made me wince.

          1. The (literal) nut punch thread was earlier, but yeah.

        2. I think that there is a law on the books that does criminalize cheating spouses. They were once pretty common. But it’s unenforced and probably unenforceable.

          1. Yep, it sounds like this was the case in New Hampshire until recently. I wonder if Dick knows.

          2. Two laws: criminal adultery on the criminal side and alienation of affection on the civil side.

    3. I hate the children because they won’t get off my lawn.

    4. The sorts of people we might call “SJWs” are pretty well divided on this issue, I think.

  8. while making “any solicitation of sexual contact involving a person under 18 years of age or through the use of force or intimidation a felony.”

    You know, this is just one of the many, many, ok infinite, reasons why I hate fuckstick politicians with a passion. Because, isn’t it already illegal in NH to use force and intimidation on a person to get sex? I think it’s called rape. That’s not already illegal in NH?

    1. Maybe it has to do with NH’s age of consent being 16 so they’re having to include that the “commerce” part of decriminalizing prostitution still requires a person over the age of majority?

      1. That makes some sense. Though I don’t know why age of consent shouldn’t be the age of consent for everything.

        The use of force part might be intended to be used to discourage pimps.

  9. A little context… The dude eventually attempted suicide.

  10. Rep. John Martin (R-Merrimack) worried that high-school football players would move from “having a keg party after a victory to having a hooker party after a victory.”

    I’m glad someone is looking out for the interests of cheerleaders.

    1. Rep. John Martin (R-Merrimack) worried that high-school football players would move from “having a keg party after a victory to having a keg and hooker party after a victory.”

      FIF Him

    2. And since when do high school kids have the money to hire a bunch of hookers? Maybe Representative Martin goes for the toothless crack whore that will do anything for a fix but most people have at least some standards.

      And what high school kid with any options hires a hooker anyway? I am pretty sure getting to second base with some 16 year old cheerleader would be a hell of a lot more fun than going all the way with a hooker, especially when you are that age.

      Further proof only the really stupid get elected to office.

      1. And since when do high school kids have the money to hire a bunch of hookers?

        You’ve never seen Porky’s?

        1. Yeah, that worked out real well for them.

    3. “Rep. John Martin (R-Merrimack) worried that high-school football players would move from “having a keg party after a victory to having a hooker party after a victory.””

      Apparently a) high schoolers have tons of disposable income to blow on prostitutes and b) age of consent laws are going to be eliminated as part of this law so a prostitute banging a 15 year old will be totally legal.

      Stupid party strikes again.

    4. Last time I checked it would still be illegal for a high school football team to have a keg party. I realize I haven’t lived in New Hampshire in several years, but I think I’d have heard if the age to purchase and consume alcohol had been lowered under 18.

  11. Criminalizing prostitution is nothing but society attempting to control and contain male sexuality. All of the bullshit about it victimizing women is just that, bullshit. And everyone knows it. Prostitution’s greatest sin is that it lessens the control women have over sex and male sexuality. If prostitution is legal, women now face competition for their husbands and boyfriends. They might actually have to accommodate a little in that regard. And we cant’ have that.

    So we criminalize prostitution and of course the women who do it are then victimized and treated as criminals. And any man who is too fat, old, shy or socially maladroit to convince women to have sex with them are now declared criminals for not being willing to live sexless lives.

    1. It will be interesting to see how prostitution would shift the dating scene. Some people really want nothing more than sex with another human. For what they spend on buying girls at the bar drinks right now, they could have guaranteed sex of the variety they want with none of the current possible consequences. There is a possibility that the dating scene would get a lot more egalitarian when the pressure and incentive to get laid is removed.

      1. I don’t think it would very much. Even for men there is an emotional element to sex. Part of the thrill of sex is getting a woman to do it with you. There is something demeaning about hiring a hooker. It is admitting you are not good looking enough or good enough to get a woman to do it for free.

        For that reason I can’t see hookers really putting a dent on the single dating scene. All legalized prostitution would do would allow husbands to get other women to do the things their wives won’t without worrying about dealing with a mistress and allow men who are for whatever reason unable to attract women on their own to have a little action. That is really it.

        1. Wait until really lifelike sexbots hit the market. SoCons and SJWs go batshit insane. News at 11.

          1. I think the SJWs will go even more insane than the SoCons. Whatever you think of SoCons, they at least understand that women and men are different and women have to make some effort to keep their husbands and boyfriends from looking elsewhere. The SJWs deny all of that. They honestly think that women should hold all of the power, do anything they want sexually and some beta male feminist husband is supposed to put up with it and like it.

            The guys out buying sex bots and avoiding marriage won’t be the kind of guys who marry some SoCon chick who holds out for marriage but then fucks like a rabbit and has five kids once she does. It will be the men who are likely to marry some feminist or college educated career woman. Sexbots will effectively put an end to the dream that women can hold all the cards in a marriage and force men to like it or lump it. And that will drive the SJWs insane.

            1. … Sexbots will effectively put an end to the dream that women can hold all the cards in a marriage and force men to like it or lump it. And that will drive the SJWs insane.

              And it will be declared that, as artificial objects, SexBots lack the capacity to consent and, therefore, using them for their intended purpose is rape. Problem solved.

          2. They already are. The library of “social science” is currently being built that shows the knock-on effects of sexbots (spoilers, it’s no different from the arguments about porn). “If we allow men to engage in sexual intercourse without caring for the emotional and psychological needs of the other “partner”, well, they’re just going to revert to a pack of engorged baboons raping everything in sight!”

        2. Q) What’s the difference between a job and a wife?

          A) A job still sucks.

        3. Isn’t there a confidence thing too? Prostitutes are paid not to judge and to make you feel comfortable. It would seem like a big column in their favor for the inexperienced.

          And I’m not denying the emotional element to sex for both genders, but PUGs and red pill types exist for a reason. There are a lot of guys out there putting a lot of effort into getting laid that don’t seem to care about the emotional part for the majority of their hookups.

          1. They totally care about the emotional part. The emotional part for the guy out screwing any woman they can is the high associated with getting a woman in bed. It is a sense of conquest. You can never have that with a hooker.

            I think the guys out there living by the mantra of “start ugly early” would be the last ones to hire a hooker. They are looking for the thrill of seducing a woman not just to get off. The guys who hire hookers would be mostly men who are looking to get off without having to mess with seducing a woman or any attachments. And that is going to be mostly married men who don’t want to mess with seducing one and single guys who can’t even if they try.

          2. If you want to explore this notion, a good place to start would be an internet search of the terms “Girlfriend Experience” vs “Pornstar Experience”.

            1. Bingo, hamster. Ultimately, no chick that you are paying is ever going to be the same thing as one you are not. No matter how hard she tries, you and she both know she is only there as long as the credit card clears.

              1. John, we don’t actually agree on this subject, and I’d like it if you didn’t claim we do.

                1. The point of your post wasn’t very clear Hamster. I’ve been trying to figure out what you meant.

                  1. Nothing. Just that you seemed to be experiencing curiosity and thinky-thoughts, and I recommended search terms which could be useful to exploring the notion.

                    Those search terms don’t auto-link to goatse, that I’m aware of.

                    1. Here’s an easierlink for your convenience.

                    2. Ah, thanks Hamster.

        4. get a woman to do it for free.

          No woman has sex for free. Even if you’re not paying money, you’re paying for it somehow.

    2. If people were all logical about it (which of course they aren’t when sex is involved), one might think that legal prostitution would be in a way a good thing for wives. Lots of people have affairs. A decent number of women largely lose interest in sex at some point in their lives. Wouldn’t it be better for two people who don’t see eye to eye sexually, but want to stay together, if the guy sees prostitutes rather than trying to hook up socially where an actual relationship might develop? Maybe whores save marriages.

      1. Maybe whores save marriages.

        I tried that line on my wife. Five days later, when I came out of the coma, I realized that it might not have been the best excuse.

        1. Which is why “If people were all logical about it (which of course they aren’t when sex is involved)”

      2. A decent number of women largely lose interest in sex at some point in their lives.

        I think a decent number of women would disagree. A decent number of women largely lose interest in their current sexual partner at some point in their lives. Just like men.

        1. Well, some number. “Decent” could mean a lot of things and was intentionally vague. It happens (particularly when certain popular psychotropic medications are involved). Or that’s what it looks like anyway.

        2. “Women! Soon as they get the ring on, they squirt out five kids and blow up like a balloon. It’s deception, that’s what it is. I like a woman who takes care of herself. What’s so wrong about that? And my wife has no interest in me. We never talk any more. I try telling her about my day, my boss, the traffic, and all I get is ‘blah blah blah kids, blah blah blah bills blah blah did you pick up that present for my mother’s birthday’.”

          Show of hands, everyone who has heard some variation on this by a guy who still fits into 32s by slinging them lower on his ass so his belly doesn’t get in the way.

          Well done, HM. Well done.

          1. Show of hands, everyone who has heard some variation on this by a guy who still fits into 32s by slinging them lower on his ass so his belly doesn’t get in the way.

            To be fair, I don’t know what very many H&R commenters look like, so I can’t be sure of this part.

          2. Well, that does happen sometimes (not to me, please don’t think I’m just bitching about my own life here).

            Excuse me if I am believing old stereotypes about female sexuality or something. But the fact is that people in long term relationships often do lose their sexual motivation, to put it gently and broadly, and still want to stay together.

    3. I find it interesting that the bill in question was introduced by three female politicians.

  12. If you legalize drugs, everybody’s going to run out and become drug addicts and drug addiction is bad.

    If you know drug addiction is bad, why are you planning on becoming a drug addict?

    What? Me? No, I’m not going to run out and become a drug addict just because drugs are legalized.

    So you think you’ll choose not to become a drug addict but everyone else will?

    Well, no, but…

    But what? Why do you think you need a law telling people not to do stupid things?

    Are you implying I’m a smug asshole who thinks he’s smarter and better than everyone else?

    My, you are the smart one aren’t you?

    1. Are you kidding me, man? Have you seen the list of video games banned in Aussieland? Fallout 3 was orginally banned there because at the time of release, I guess the word ‘morphine’ appeared in the game. Morphine was later changed to ‘Mentats’ if I remember correctly. Because yeah, anyone who sees the word morphine will immediately turn into an addict.

      1. I don’t think morphine was changed to mentats. Mentats are the intelligence booster in the game. Maybe it was changed to stimpacks, the things that give you back your health. There is also something that increases damage resistance, but I can’t remember the name.

        1. Sorry, it was changed to Med-X, not Mentats.

          1. Risen is still banned there because of sexual and drug content.

  13. A little bit of clarification on the actual text of the legislation as it regards minors is: “makes it a class B felony to solicit, agree to perform, or engage in sexual penetration in return for consideration with a person under the age of 18 or involving compelling another person by force or intimidation.”

    Key word is “in return for consideration” (that is, for payment or some other good or service of value), in other words, the legislation does not raise the existing New Hampshire age of consent (for unpaid sex) from 16, but does clearly establish 18 as the age of consent for paid sex. That’s clearly to avoid creating a situation where buying sex from 16-17 yo’s becomes legal.

    1. This is helpful; thanks.

    2. Why is it okay for me to have a 16 year old sugar baby in Vermont and give her tons of shit after which she has sex with me but it’s not okay to cut out the hypocrisy and just pay her directly?

      I’ve always felt a lot of prostitution laws are actually about punishing poorer people for shit rich people do constantly. Donald Trump bangs super models because they want his money, but if a poor guy who can’t give out rides on his private jet in exchange for blow jobs pays a prostitute 50 bucks, they both go to prison.

      The rule is that you’re totally allowed to exchange sex for money provided you pretend you aren’t exchanging sex for money. Prostitution laws criminalize honesty.

      1. How much law enforcement would we really need if not for going after the perpetrators of victimless crime?

  14. OT, and local for me, so no one cares, but fuck you anyway I am sharing it because of the last line in the story which stood out: 8 arrested in massage parlor raids

    “This investigation went on for a considerable amount of time,” said Town of Newburgh police Lt. James Nenni. “We had looked at these particular locations and we acted on them.”

    I bet you did, James.

    1. She was charged with practicing massage without a license, a felony, and prostitution, a misdemeanor.

      Pithy commentary in and of itself.

      1. Do you realize that if you massage the wrong muscle the client could die?

        1. That is such a ridiculously unlikely occurrence that I seriously doubt the 1000 hours of training to get a New York massage license is necessary.

          I looked that up. You do need 1000 hours of training to get this license. That’s insane.

            1. I’m having trouble with sarcasm today. Leave me alone.

          1. I personally would want anyone giving me a real massage to have had that kind of training and practice. But there is certainly no need to legally require it.

    2. and we acted on them

      If CSI were anywhere near real, can you imagine the amount of police DNA that would be found at those ‘particular locations’?

  15. I’m flaccid on this topic. In somewhat recent memory an STD called AIDS decimated (more than by a 1/10th, actually) generation of male homosexuals who persisted in going to bathhouses, in an act of defiance, thinking that Ronald Reagan and the 1980’s Religious Right wanted to send them to concentration camps.

    1. Ummm

      According to a poll published in December [1985] by the Los Angeles Times, 50 percent of the adults surveyed supported a quarantine of AIDS patients, 48 percent would approve of identity cards for those who test positive for antibodies to the virus that causes AIDS and 15 percent favored tattooing AIDS victims.

      Also bathhouses around the country were shut down with extreme prejudice in SF, LA and NY within three months of the transmission vector being positively identified…

      1. The Huckster in 1992:

        Responding to an Associated Press questionnaire, Huckabee said steps should be taken to “isolate the carriers of this plague” during his failed run for a U.S. Senate seat from Arkansas 15 years ago.

        He said he probably would not make the same statement today because of what is known about how HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is transmitted.

        “I had simply made the point — and I still believe this today — that in the late ’80s and early ’90s, when we didn’t know as much as we do now about AIDS, we were acting more out of political correctness than we were about the normal public health protocols that we would have acted,” Huckabee told Fox News on Sunday.

        The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention concluded in 1985 that AIDS was not transmitted by casual contact. But Huckabee said at the time, “there were other concerns being voiced by public health officials.”

    2. 1) Not all of that generation of male homos went to bathhouses. I’m still here, after all. (translation: Fuck the hell off).

      2) By the time the cause of AIDS had been identified, it was already too late for many of those men. But your sympathy is truly noteworthy. (translation: as above, but with even more contempt)

  16. OT: A few threads down sloopy posted the following link to one of the most incomprehensible word salads to ever appear on Salon:

    Too stupid to be c*nts”: The new normal of toxic male entitlement on campus

    Being profoundly amazed by it, I decided to search the author. Her Wikipedia page came up at the top of the results. Can anyone explain what is going on here? I can’t make heads or tails of this:

    Tara Ison

    1. Someone ego-wikied herself.

      1. Yep. Somebody should flag that for deletion. Not me. I don’t care enough.

    2. What’s incomprehensible?

      1. She felt assaulted because she overheard a man say something which offended her. It wasn’t directed to her, it wasn’t about her, it was just something she heard in the span of about 3 seconds. It bothered her for days.

        I’d be willing to chip in a few bucks to have Sugarfree attend her creative-writing class.

        1. Michael said it was an “incomprehensible word salad,” which would suggest he did not even get that much from it.

          1. I probably should have described it as “barely comprehensible”. I never realized that creative writing entitles one to abuse the comma to such effect.

            1. It did not strike me as in any way atypical of casual first-person narratives.

          2. Fair enough. I found it incomprehensible because I lack the empathy required to even comprehend how a, supposed, fully-functional adult could get that worked up about the situation she described. But that is probably a problem with me. Not with the word salad in question.

    3. Wow, I can’t imagine life as such a busy body. In college friends often had to call my name multiple times to get my attention, while I walked from point A to point B on campus. Some random person’s phone conversation probably would not have even registered as occurring, much less become such a horrifically important thing as to inspire an article. About the only time other people’s conversations became important to me was when the arguments got loud enough to hear through my walls, and that was more point and laugh at the arguing couple (couple down the hall had an argument about the poetry the guy wrote for the girl, “Did you even care when you wrote those words for me!”. It was hilarious and I relayed it fully for my Facebook feed) than any type of concern.

        1. I can’t believe you didn’t link Bobcat Goldthwait’s poem from Police Academy. Can’t believe it.

            1. I consider myself chastised.

    4. Isn’t this an episode of curb your enthusiasm?

  17. Rep. Dick Marston has “a problem with this bill from a woman’s point of view.”

    Is there something Mx. Marston wants to get off their chest? Really, Dick, the longer you deny your true gender identity the more you’re hurting yourself and those who care about you. Perhaps you should take a cue from Kaitlyn Jenner (*monotone voice, as if reciting from a prepared script* who is stunning and brave) and get it over with. /sarc

  18. Rep. Dick Marston (R-Hillsborough) opposes the bill and is surprised by its introduction from female legislators, demanding they answer for the fact that some married men might cheat with sex workers. “I think I have a good handle on how my wife would feel if I used the services of a sex … prostitute,” Rep. Marston said at the committee hearing, “how my wife would feel, and how many other women would feel when their husbands do that. [The bill] doesn’t say that this is only good for as long as you’re doing it with an unmarried man. I just have a problem with this bill from a woman’s point of view.”

    After RTFA, what he actually said is even dumber than I thought it would be. What his, or anyone else’s wife thinks about them using a prostitute is none of his – or the state’s – business. But concern troll is concerned…

  19. The government has no constitutional authority to criminalize prostitution. There is nothing in the US Constitution authoring the Feds to criminalize prostitution, drugs or any of a number of acts considered immoral by some or many. Same goes for most state governments. Just because something is considered immoral or “sinfull” by a group even if they are a majority is not justification to limit someone’s freedom and liberty.’

    You can not regular or legislate morality and any attempt to do so only empowers those in positions of power and conti9nually robs the rest of us of our wealth under the guise of fighting these supposed immoral acts.

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