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The Contender
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Legalized Prostitution

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/14/2015 Category: Society
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,707 times Debate No: 73477
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (5)
Votes (0)




Full resolution: "The United States of America should legalize prostitution".


Legalize: "To make (something) legal : to allow (something) by law"

Prostitution: "The act of having sex in exchange for money"

Rules (Made by bsh1 and slightly changed):
1. No forfeits
2. Any citations or sources must be used within the character limit of the debate
3. Plagiarism results in an automatic forfeit
4. Maintain a civil and decorous atmosphere
5. No trolling or semantics
6. No K's of the topic
7. My opponent accepts all of the following definitions and waives his/her right to challenge these definitions
8. The BOP is shared
9. Both debaters must follow this format:
R1: Acceptance
R2: Arguments (No rebuttals)
R3: Rebuttals and arguments
R4: Conclusions (No new arguments in this round)
10. Violation of any of these rules results in an automatic forfeit

Thank you and good luck.


I accept. Good luck.
Debate Round No. 1


Note: I'm very sorry that my round is so short; my grandfather was in the hospital and we were in the waiting room for a large portion of the night and day. I'm going to further develop my arguments next round.

Prostitution is occurring at a rapid rate in America. Currently, there are 1-2 million prostitutes in the United States. [1] This clearly shows that even if it is always illegal, the law alone will not stop prostitution. Prostitutes are currently suffering brutal money manipulation, physical abuse, and mental abuse. [2] Prostitutes are forced to do their work or face the high risk of being beaten, and when they complete the job they are merely given a fraction of what is earned. Even if they wanted to go through with the act, they risk a chance of having something else happen against their will, as 80% of prostitutes are raped every year. [2] According to various studies, 75-95 percent of prostitutes had been abused when they were children, and they stay with their "pimp" because they fear what he/she would do to them once they left. [2]. However, prostitutes cannot simply go to the police as they will be arrested upon revealing that they are a prostitute. These prostitutes are completely hopeless and are trapped in an endless cycle. No matter what they do, they and their family will suffer as a result. 204 out of every 100,000 prostitutes are murdered because of the lack of regulation. When compared to countries that have regulated prostitution, we note our rates are over 20 times higher. [3]. In addition, 6-8 percent of prostitutes suffer from STDS and HIVs, also as a result of regulation. However, when compared to other countries that have regulated prostitution we observe that it is over 1.5 times the average [3]. Estimates shows that if prostitution was made legal, the total amount of rapes (In America) would be cut by 25% percent, decreasing it to 25,000 rapes per year [4]. Prostitution has already been legalized in areas of Nevada, and since then there has been decreases in violence, diseases, and rapes in the prostitution industry.[5] [6]

Economic gains:
The prostitution industry generates a staggering 58 million dollars per year, (Even though some of the money is not recorded) and this would increase if we were able to properly regulate it. [3] I'm going to expand on exactly how much money we would save by regulating it next round.

It's going to happen anyway, so why not regulate it and actually gain profits, in addition to decreasing the risks our citizens take? Clearly, there are huge benefits to regulating prostitution and terrible downsides to keeping it illegal.

I await my opponent's arguments, thank you for reading!



Thank you to my opponent for his opening arguement. It was mentioned that he did not have much time to work on his arguement due to family issues. If this is a bad time for this debate I offer my opponent a draw and we can debate this in the future when such issues may not be as pressing. If my opponent wishes to continue, I am all for that as well.

Full Resolution:
"The United States of America should legalize prostitution."

I appreciate the opportunity to debate such a controversial topic. "Prostitution must be exposed for what it really is: a particularly lethal form of male violence against women.” (1)

Argument 1: States Rights

I will address the full resolution which indicates we are talking about a country wide legalization of prostitution. This would be a violation of States rights.

“The regulation of prostitution in the United States is not among the enumerated powers of the federal government. Under the Tenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, it is therefore exclusively the domain of the states to permit, prohibit, or otherwise regulate commercial sex…” (

Ergo the resolution that “The United States of America should legalize prostitution” is negated in so much as the United States Federal Government does not have the authority to legalize prostitution. Therefore the United States Federal government should not
legalize prostitution.

Argument 2: Prostitution should be considered a crime as it creates victims.

The crux of why I stand opposed to the resolution is simple. Prostitution should be considered a crime as it creates victims. This argument will be in two parts. First showing definitively that prostitution is dangerous and second showing that the l
egalization of prostitution does not change its danger.

In addition to this argument I will address the
full resolution which indicates we are talking about a country wide legalization of prostitution. This would be a violation of States rights.

I will be referencing this table through-out. (Pic)(4)

The Prostitution Statistics You Have to Know

Argument 2 Part 1: Prostitution is dangerous

A: Prostitution spreads disease

As the table above indicates 50% of prostitutes have HIV in the world. In the USA it is estimated that 20% of prostitutes in America have an STD.

“In the United States, the rate of HIV infection among prostitutes varies from state to state. In New Jersey, 57 percent of prostitutes are HIV-positive” (1)

B: Prostitution is psychologically harmful

“Many prostitutes experience post-traumatic stress disorder because of rape and other assaults as well as the trauma of daily sexual contact with dominant strangers.” (1)

C: Prostitution has a disturbingly high mortality rate

“Mortality in a long-term Open Cohort of Prostitute women” a study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology found the “death rate among active prostitutes of 459 per 100,000 person-years, which is 5.9 times that for the (age and race adjusted) general population. This corresponds to an occupational fatality rate more than triple that of fishing workers (the highest fatality profession tracked by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics).” (2)

D: Violence against prostitutes.

“Eighty-five percent of prostitutes surveyed in Minnesota had been raped, according to a 1994 study of violence and prostitution. In another study, Farley and Kelly found that of 475 women interviewed in South Africa, Thailand, Turkey, the United States and Zambia, nearly 75 percent had been physically assaulted and 62 percent had been raped. A 1994 study by the Council for Prostitution Alternatives in Portland, Ore., found that prostitutes were raped an average of once a week.”(1)

Due to the spread of disease, the psychological damage, the high mortality rate, and the direct violence against prostitutes, it is empirically evident that Prostitution is dangerous.

Argument 2 Part 2:
Legalization of prostitution does not change its danger.

As it has been established that prostitution is harmful we can now address if legalizing such a practice impacts the danger.

“The U.S. Government adopted a strong position against legalized prostitution in a December 2002 National Security Presidential Directive based on evidence that prostitution is inherently harmful and dehumanizing, and fuels trafficking in persons, a form of modern-day slavery. Prostitution and related activities, including pimping and patronizing or maintain brothels fuel the growth of modern-day slavery by providing a façade behind which traffickers for sexual exploitation operate.

Where prostitution is legalized or tolerated, there is a greater demand for human trafficking. Few activities are as brutal and damaging to people as prostitution. Field research in nine countries concluded that 60-75 percent of women in prostitution were raped, 70-95 percent were physically assaulted, and 68 percent met the criteria for post-traumatic stress disorder in the same range as treatment-seeking combat veterans and victims of state-organized torture. Beyond this shocking abuse, the public health implications of prostitution are devastating and include a myriad of serious and fatal diseases, including HIV/AIDS…

State Attempts to regulate prostitution by introducing medical check-ups or licenses don’t address the core problem: the routine abuse and violence that form the prostitution experience and brutally victimize those caught in its netherworld. Prostitution leaves women and children physical, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually devastated. Recovery takes years, even decades, often, the damage can never be undone.”

The Federal Government does not have the authority to legalize prostitution on a federal level. Such an action is a clear violation of States rights. Aside from this implementation issue, it is empirically evident that prostitution is dangerous. This is due to the spread of disease, the psychological damage, the high mortality rate, and the physical violence that accompanies prostitution. Legalization
of prostitution does not change its danger. I conclude as the U.S. Government did in 2002…. Whether legal or not, “prostitution is inherently harmful and dehumanizing.” The United States should NOT legalize prostitution.

Back to Pro.



Debate Round No. 2


Con and I talked earlier about this. This debate will be a draw (No one vote please) and we will make a debate in a week or two on the same topic. I will post the link to the new debate in comments when it is made.



Agreed to a tie...
Debate Round No. 3


Filling space.
Debate Round No. 4
5 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Posted by Mikal 1 year ago
just have airmax delete it

if you both message hima nd agree he will
Posted by Arcanas 1 year ago
Whoops. Good catch!
Posted by kasmic 1 year ago
It says four rounds... But only three listed.
Posted by Arcanas 1 year ago
A "k" refers to a "kritik."

A kritik is any argument that challenges a presumption in the topic. For instance, if the topic were "government has a moral obligation to ensure national security," the topic is assuming that morality exists. So, a K of the topic would be to argue that morality doesn't exist.
Posted by kasmic 1 year ago
What is a "k" on the topic?
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