Slavery is not work


Most American media outlets latched onto the recent prostitution sting operation that netted big fish Robert Kraft like it was bigger than Monica, maybe bigger even than Stormy.

The story had everything. An indicted billionaire alleged to frequent strip mall massage parlors promising 15 minutes of ecstacy for 65 buckaroos (roughly two cents in Kraft’s tax bracket). Owner of the Superbowl Champions falls from grace. Possible interviews with a prostitute named Trixie who knows secrets about Kraft previously available only from the National Enquirer. And best of all, with all praise to Hugh Hefner, the patron saint of randy geezers, Dude! The guy’s 77!

Tough editorial debates took place, I suspect. Was Kraft best covered as a dirty but harmless old man, a sexual predator, or a hero to little blue pill users? Progressive media, represented at the pinnacle by the left-leaning (i.e. slightly right of Fidel Castro) New York Times, are big on victimless crimes and slow to criticise any activity that feels good. If Kraft merely engaged in a round of pay-to-play among consenting adults, what the heck? Lighten up. Who are we to judge? Live and let live.


Sidebar: How fast can Donald Trump distance himself from Bob Kraft?

Even if the charges are legit, was this prosecution the product of a fame-seeking DA maliciously targeting a pillar of society? Kraft professed innocence, after all, and many said that at worst he did what many have done before and presumably will do until the end of time. Maybe the real story is Kraft’s presumed virility at an advanced age: great fodder for late-night TV masters of the double entendre.

Anyone remember Hugh Grant’s first public appearance after being busted in the backseat of a rental car with a Los Angeles street walker? Jay Leno gave him the look only Jay Leno could give, paused for effect, and deadpanned, “What were you thinking?” Just like that, Grant was rehabilitated.

With Kraft, maybe Barbara Walters can return long enough to ask him if his brain had anything whatsoever to do with what our mamas would call his bad choices.

Covering the bust as the scandal du jour, then relegating it to page 37, was the safest option. To its credit, The Times made a feeble effort to address human trafficking, a disgraceful stain on America’s underbelly. But it failed, sank into the muck, and helped advance the false perception of prostitution as good dirty fun. Indeed, after mentioning human trafficking, The Times perpetrated an outrageous lie of omission.

Said The Times: “A recent Florida massage parlor sting exposed a secretive world of human trafficking: A $3 billion-a-year industry where many mostly foreign women work as prostitutes to pay debts to smugglers, spa owners and lawyers.”

To say people being trafficked in the sex industry “work as prostitutes to pay debts” is despicable. Continuing with the suggestion that modern-day slavers, kidnappers, rapists and pimps are just shady business people who catch and release their “workers” to pursue the American Dream was delusional and ignored reality.

Are there prostitutes who willingly enter the oldest profession and use their bodies and charms to gain wealth? Certainly. Are there prostitutes who enjoy their profession? Certainly. Are there prostitutes who ply their trade over long periods of time without being imprisoned, beaten, raped or robbed? Certainly. But lastly, do these “working girls” at the tip of an immoral and degrading industry represent more than a fraction of prostitutes? Not on your life. And certainly not on their’s.

The Times said prostitutes are “mostly foreign,” as if to suggest they, like millions of undocumented workers, are doing jobs Americans don’t want. That, of course, is a staple among progressive whoppers. Most trades that attract large numbers of (pardon my insensitivity) illegal aliens still employ more Americans than visitors. Clearly, there are Americans who want the work, and many lose out to day laborers who magically appear each morning, work for far less than the going wage, and evaporate at closing time. But I digress.

Thousands of women, many of whom are under-aged prisoners, may “work” to pay off slavers and pimps. They are paying ransoms, not debts. They are being raped, not making love. And they are often trapped like workers belonging to the infamous old Company Stores immortalized by Tennessee Ernie Ford. There’s never enough money to break free. Women and girls are imprisoned, raped, abused, and eventually discarded like so much garbage. Is that scenario victimless?

Thankfully, there are lawmakers like Ohio Senator Rob Portman who work to expose the problem of human trafficking and modern-day slavery in America. Laws like his bipartisan SESTA — Stop Enabling Sex Traffickers Act — can help to remove this blemish on American society that has been ignored much too long.

“My mama used to dance for the money they’d throw,” Cher sang. “And every night all the men would come around, and lay their money down…”

Real men stay home. Honest newspapers care about victimized women and girls, whether from Alabama, Alberta, Albany, Albania, Ann Arbor, Auckland or your daughter’s home town.

Slavery is not work.

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