This is our truth, tell us yours
Content note for violence against sex workers, rape, and graphic accounts, especially on the links
On saturday this week Reclaim the Night (london) will march in support of state violence against sex workers. In their press statement they state that they oppose the decriminalization of sex work, and instead want the Swedish abomination introduced in the UK. A model which removes no laws criminalizing sex workers, their families or their partners. A model which does not allow us to work together for safety. A model which has been shown to increase stigma, decrease engagement with outreach services.A model whose only goal is the eradication of sex workers, by any means possible.
They call this decriminalization, stealing our very words. Lying about not only what the Swedish Model does, but what it is called, lying about their intentions, lying about wanting to do anything but harm sex workers. And these are lies, there can be no reason to support the Swedish Model of criminalization other than wanting to harm sex workers, punish us for existing. The Swedish model came into existence to make sex work untenable, as the swedish government themselves admit.
And I am tired, tired of the lies, tired of being shouted over, tired of the hate.
The very first blog I wrote on sex work was about Reclaim the Night Scotland, the same hate, the same lies, the same twisting of facts, the same placing of political ideology above womens lives.
I am tired of the deaths in the name of a radical feminist dogma.
I am tired of being spat at, the acceptable hate figure of middle class women who step over the homeless on their way to a jolly little march, isn’t activism wonderful.
I am tired of my migrant sisters being deported under Swedish laws which declare selling sex is incompatible with their morality. A morality which says rape with a bottle isn’t rape, because women pretend to not enjoy it.
I am tired of the deaths of my trans sisters being ignored, because to be a sex worker and trans means no one sheds a tear.
I am however still alive.
She sold sex on the streets, a criminal offence which the Swedish Model does not decriminalise (so tired of the lies).
She called her boyfriend as her safecall, or her pimp under current Uk law, a situation the swedish model does not decriminalize (so tired of the lies).
She called her boyfriend, screaming for help, begging her attacker to stop, pleading for her life (so tired)
She was murdered, and dumped, and will be forgotten, and reclaim the night will justify calling her grieving partner her pimp, will crow and gloat as they march.
I am tired of our deaths being a footnote, our rapes being denied, our lives being debated, our voices being silenced.
If you march with Reclaim the Night on Saturday, remember Anita, remember you are pissing on her grave, pause for a moment to laugh, to celebrate, there is one less of us to offend you.
I could fill this post with a 1000 links to the academic research which shows how decriminalization of sex work protects the most vulnerable, protects people like Anita. There is no point though, this is not about facts, this is a political battle played out over the bodies of dead whores.
I am tired, but at least I am alive.