Jen Engquist, Fargo, Published April 05 2014
Letter: Prostitution article skewedThe article “Fargo woman accused of prostituting at home, faces child neglect charge” is improperly headlined and focused. The young woman who suffers accusations in the headline and whose picture was printed had reported that a man, a “customer,” had held her at gunpoint and robbed her. Wouldn’t a more fitting title be “Young woman held up by gunpoint; dangerous man still on the loose” or “Human trafficking in FM: not safe for young women”?
The message sent by this article is that a young woman who is in danger or who has been assaulted cannot seek help from authorities without being exploited and imprisoned if she is working in the sex industry. This is ineffective. If the man who held her at gunpoint had his picture in the paper, this would send a warning to all men who are soliciting sex from the sex industry.
Furthermore, it would have sent the message to young women in dangerous situations that there is a way out and that coming clean can be the first step toward a new life. Instead, only the young woman is named and blamed. Her abusive ex-boyfriend who “brought her food” and the man who threatened her life are still at large in the community.
The article even failed to mention if there is a search for the armed man. Human trafficking is a growing issue in our community. We can’t stop the trafficking by making an example out of this young woman and her life circumstances. We can stop human trafficking by ending the industry’s demand. Exploit the people who choked her, who held her at gunpoint, who neglected her humanity.