4/15/2006

Working towards dignity and a full stomach

Dance bars in mumbai have been granted a lease of life. Those girls can now earn.
Some people argue that dance bars are the reason that wives cry at home ‘waiting for their husbands’, that young boys get polluted, that the morals of our ‘tradition’ are getting eroded. I think that’s just such a load of crap!

As long as people, men and women, can earn without causing harm to another person, their trade, whatever it might be, should be deemed legal and acceptable.

Don’t know how many of you have been to Sonagahchi, the Sex Work district of Calcutta. There are about 500,000 sex workers there…give or take some. They are battling to get dignity for their ‘labor’. Till sex work is legalized, they say, they cannot be deemed ‘workers’ – they cannot even get basic services like opening a bank account, getting a ration card, getting a voter id, getting chier children admission to schools, etc…stuff that any regular moron on the street, who supposedly does not trade sex for money, can. They want to knwo whether they share this country with us, as equal citizens.

The current debate about making clients of sex workers deemed as ‘criminals’ adds chaos to the already hungry terrain that a sex worker walks. The Indian govt says its doing this coz that way it can stop trafficking of women and children! Blah! Is the moral sanity of people overtaken by large doses of a profane and exploitative mindset…that is the question of this fuming debate.

Meanwhile, poor women who have not recourse will continue to sell sex or whatever they have to keep alive. Question is, will we ever be able to allow them the basic dignity of a ‘worker’….