In a few European countries, prostitution is being moved from the streets to the stalls, all for the safety of the women involved. However, is the safety of the sex workers really the issue, or are the subjects of citizen satisfaction and convenience really at work with this solution?
Recently, in Zurich, Switzerland, the city council approved the construction of 30 drive-in sex boxes for use by street prostitutes. The sex boxes will be three-sided figures in the industrial district and will be constructed with an alarm for prostitutes to use if they are in danger or need assistance. The sex boxes will be large enough to accommodate a normal-sized car. Although prostitution is legal in Switzerland, local residents are tired of their neighborhoods being plagued by street walkers and the crime and violence that prostitution tends to bring to an area. A police spokesperson said that since they cannot stop prostitution, they needed to learn to control it, which is the impetus for the implementation of the sex boxes. A representative for the Social Welfare Department said that women involved in prostitution would be better protected from attacks when utilizing the boxes and added
They will also experience better business, as they will incur no travel time to get to and from appointments
Similar sex boxes are currently used in Italy, France and several cities in Germany including Bonn, Cologne and Essen. Some of these sex boxes are inside or feature roofs, along with some other shelter from the weather.
Perhaps, it IS an issue of convenience. Clients in Switzerland will have much more efficient experiences when looking for hookers. Instead of cruising around the red light district monotonously, they only have to drive up to one of many sex boxes and negotiate with the escort of their choice. There is no attempting to find a location that is out of the way or private: just drive in the box. It’s about as easy as it can get.
And local residents don’t have to look at street prostitution unless they want to.
How convenient is it for the prostitutes involved? Of course, having an alarm button at hand may be a comfort. But what else is being done to rid the area of crime? Prostitutes still have to get home safely. They either walk home or to their vehicles in order to drive home. As they leave their sex boxes to call it a day (or night!), they are still just as vulnerable to crime and violence as they were before. They can be easily targeted by other criminals, who can stake out their business at the sex box. Criminals can determine which prostitute may have the most money on her based on the number of clients who entered the box while she was working. They are sitting ducks as soon as they leave the safety of their boxes. They can be raped, robbed and murdered as they head for home, just as they could’ve been before the construction of the boxes. So, is safety really a legitimate argument for the sex boxes? Or, is it truly for the convenience of the city and its residents?
Sex boxes are a convenient solution for the police in Switzerland: they can disguise the real problem and make it look as if they’ve solved the issue. They’ve made it easy for the police force to “oversee” the prostitutes. They’ve found a convenient solution to rid the streets of prostitutes so the residents don’t have to see it. It’s out of sight, so it must be out of mind. But, as it is a convenient solution, has it really solved any issues or corrected any problems?
The entire prostitution and escort industries are statements of the times and human nature. Human sex drives have been driving the industries for eons, but society continues to make it easier and easier for carnal intimacy to be acquired with escorts.
Convenience is one of the core underlying principles of the adult industry. Sex that is convenient and easy is sought after and served up for a price. Women make themselves available and their encounters convenient for clients so they can obtain business. If it weren’t convenient, it wouldn’t work.
Let’s look at the real core of the escort industry:
- Clients want to schedule an escort encounter with ease. The Internet has created exactly the type of convenience the escort industry was intended for. With a few keystrokes and the flick of a mouse, a client can pull up an array of available escorts for his choosing. It’s as easy as ordering pizza. Clients may text, call, or email a prospective escort in hopes of setting up an encounter. Once an escort and a client agree upon a date, time and location, the date is set with the promise to pay cash up front. It’s an easy arrangement that can be done within a few minutes. If a particular escort is not available when a client wishes her to be, he can simply select from the others he’s found who meet his criteria.
- Escorts find clients the easy way: through online advertising. While certain escorts still acquire clients through word-of-mouth and in-person pick-ups, most modern-day upscale escorts attract clientele through their websites or profiles on online escort directory listings. Gone are the days of hanging off a saloon balcony or calling to men cruising the street. Escorts look for clients online through posting alluring photographs, interesting biographies and funny blogs. Their SEO content-rich websites show up through Internet searches, putting them first on a prospective client’s contact list.
- Clients want to skip lengthy courtship rituals. Clients are too busy to find a nice girl to date, take her to dinner, buy her flowers, go to movies and participate in all the other expectations required when a relationship begins to form. Dating takes too much time for busy clients, especially when they really only want the physical intimacies associated with such a relationship. Thus, escorts are their perfect solutions. They get what they want in a to-the-point package that forgoes all the other nonsense required when dating someone. Instead of only getting a quick goodnight kiss on the first date, they get it all done within a two-hour minimum encounter—and they leave satisfied.
- Clients are too busy for the games that are involved in many relationships. They don’t have time to decipher a woman’s “hard to get” ploys or her emotional outbursts. They don’t care whether a woman is trying to play another man against them to make them jealous. Games are lengthy distractions from a client’s main purpose: to get laid. In today’s world, many clients just don’t have the extra time or focus to give to someone who demands involvement in silly, trivial dating games. Dealing with escorts is a convenient way to avoid the insecure games many women play.
- Clients are too busy for clingy partners. In traditional relationships, significant others expect attention, affection, phone calls, texts, gifts and extra time to let them know they are special. However, in this day and age where time is a precious commodity, many men simply don’t have the abilities to give these things to a woman. They are working hard on their careers, enjoy time with their friends and have other priorities. Escorts are convenient alternatives because they don’t demand their clients’ attention or special gestures. If they don’t get flowers on their birthdays or Valentine’s Day, they aren’t going to refuse to see a client. They aren’t going to call and expect attention during an important business meeting. Escorts have their own lives that don’t involve their clients, so they will never be clingy or require extra attention.
- Escorts need money. The escorting career is often a matter of convenience for escorts, too. Many women can make a respectable wage doing things they are skilled or educated to do. However, when that wage is compared to the wages they can make escorting, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to calculate which is more lucrative. Escorting is a much more convenient career in that it allows a skilled escort to make the weekly wage she would make in other careers during one to two encounters with clients. Convenience drives escorts into their careers, providing them more freedom with their lives and pocketbooks.
- Escorts use their assets easily. They don’t have to wait to implement a long-awaited degree or to build a strong resume in order to make a quality wage. Escorts find convenience in that they use their skills and experience in the bedroom, their common sense to market themselves and their conversational talents to form relationships with clients. Their good looks, charm and sex appeal do it for them, in addition to their brains and sophistication. The escorting industry is convenient because they don’t have to work their way up in a company in order to enjoy the benefits of a wealthy life.
- Clients need the efficiency of seeing an escort. Good looking, wealthy clients may be able to land a one-night stand easily. However, it may take three or four tries before he feels he finds a quality girl to go home with for the night. (And, that quality girl may expect a phone call the following day.) Clients want a sure thing, and they know they can get that with an escort. It’s convenience at its best.
- Incalls provide convenience for both escorts and clients. Much like the sex boxes used in Europe, the incall makes it extremely convenient for escorts in that they aren’t required to travel to another location to meet up with a client. They have everything they need at their fingertips at their own place. Additionally, clients don’t have the hassle of reserving a hotel room or run the risk of getting caught by inviting an escort into their homes.
- Virtual escorting is, perhaps, the most convenient aspect of the industry. A new trend in escorting, virtual escorting brings a two-way webcam escort encounter to clients at mutually-agreed upon times. While it may lack actual physical contact, it’s a great alternative for people who don’t have time or the ability to travel to see an escort. It is the epitome of truly convenient sex.
While society may be attempting to make the sex work industry safer and better for all concerned, the real underlying issue is convenience, just as it always has been and always will be. Convenience drives human nature and creates all kinds of “solutions” of its own.