Victor Malarek: "Johns: Sex for Sale and the Men Who Buy It"
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REVIEW #1 of "Johns"
"Following up on his scathing indictment of the international sexual enslavement of women in The Natashas, investigative journalist Victor Malarek lays bare the other side of the crisis—the men who fuel the demand. ~~~~~ Each year more than 800,000 women and children are lured, tricked, or forced into prostitution to meet an apparently insatiable demand, joining an estimated 10 million women already ensnared in the $20 billion worldwide sex trade. To date, most research on the subject has focused on the various issues that propel these women into the trade, but little has been investigated, or written, about those who trigger the demand—the "Johns." In this hard-hitting expose, Victor Malarek ranges worldwide, unmasking the kind of men—and organizations—that foster and drive the sex trade, from America to Europe, Brazil to Thailand, Phnom Penh to St. Petersburg and Costa Rica. The Johns is a chilling look into a dark corner of the world that these men have created at the expense of countless women and children."
REVIEW #2 of "Johns"
"In Canada, its nice to pretend that prostitution isnt the dangerous social ill it used to be. For one thing, this country no longer has any prostitutes. It now boasts sex workers who march into the night under the aegis of advocacy groups, health clinics, and a sympathetic police force. For another, the sale of sex isnt the assault on mainstream morality it once was. When advertising for even the most ordinary products consists of lascivious innuendo, and electronic trails of paid porn sites haunt half the home computer hard drives in the land, prostitution is just one more facet of our hyper-erotic culture. Cant we agree that the oldest profession has acquired at least a tolerable semblance of safety and legitimacy?
Well, no. In The Johns, Victor Malarek sets out to demonstrate that prostitution is a pandemic that is destroying more lives worldwide than ever before. An award-winning investigative journalist, Malarek has produced a sort-of sequel or companion to 2004s The Natashas, which examined the flourishing sex trade (and its adjunct, human trafficking) in post-Soviet Eastern Bloc countries. Whereas before he focused on the supply side of the transaction the women and children who are pushed into service here he looks at the demand side: the men who rent them. The resulting investigation of johns in Europe, Asia, North America, and Australia provides as disgusting a catalogue of venality, cruelty, and turpitude as you could imagine.
Malarek lists several reasons why ever larger numbers of men are prepared to pay for sex. Many, he alleges, are befuddled and angered by the empowerment of women in Western society, and now seek redress by essentially purchasing female submission. Many express a very modern desire for hassle-free physical gratification that skirts the messiness of traditional romantic relationships. These drives, combined with the ease of 21st-century travel and the international community's failure to zealously prosecute johns, have transformed much of the developing world into a fantasy land where men can indulge in truly abhorrent sexual escapades with no repercussions.
Chapter by chapter, Malarek feeds us a superabundance of appalling anecdotes from both here and abroad. He recounts the adventures of Donald Bakker who, with his wife's complicity, tortured over 60 drug-addicted prostitutes from Vancouver's Downtown Eastside. He takes us to Svay Pak, a remote Cambodian village that specializes in the sale of child sex, and to Las Vegas, where tweens are being trafficked at truck stops. Some of his most disturbing stories involve the betrayal of those at risk by authorities pledged to help them. In one case, for example, a woman recalls being held captive by her pimp in the Bosnian town of Tuzla, where she was routinely savaged by UN peacekeepers and aid workers stationed in the area.
In the books closing chapters, Malarek offers his prescription for a global problem. Having already railed against prostitution's legalization he points to the disastrous consequences such a policy has had in Germany and the Netherlands he proposes instead that only the buying of sex be criminalized. "
~~~~~ quillandquire.com ~~~~~~~ See also "Anti-Legalization of Prostitution" page here.
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Video playlist of 7 videos of Victor Malarek talking about "Johns"
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