Wednesday, August 8

Prostitution

I knew I would inevitably reach this topic sooner or later. What made it sooner though, is that I was shocked to notice that prostitution in Egypt is on the rise, as contrary to the current ethical and religious cover the country wears nowaday. Never has been a time that corruption was a matter of daily life, something that you have to live with and take as a fact, as we are witnessing nowadays!
Now, you might have preconceptions about what I'm about to say here. Believe me this is different. The Cairian district of Mohandesseen has been a NO ZONE for me during summer. I simply decided not to hang out there (from July to September), for a number of reasons. But under great pressure from my friends I gave in for once, thinking it may serve as a reminder to stick to my resolution, which I've been sticking to for almost a decade. Anyway, there I was in the middle of all the chaos, noise, ugly sights, and crowdedness. I became so depressed that I was unable to join any conversations and I started looking through the glass front of the coffee shop we chose. I never saw a prostitute at work before. Heard about them, may be seen a few who got the reputation, but never actually witnessed one of them making a business deal. I was so amazed! And I found myself so intrgued that I actually thought about walking out there and talking to them. Like a TV interview, and ask all the questions that movies never attempted to give answers for.
The girl looked like a gathered car from the junk yard! She looked too young for what she's doing. She wore pretty expensive clothes but looked like a total mess in them. Her hair was half blond half brunette. Her make up made her even look messier. You'd say nothing in her fit the other. But she was so self-confident. She would stare the guy in the face and make an eye-contact that I bet was never thought achievable by communication trainers. She stood there as firm and as seriously as a business owner at a meeting. It then occured to me. Well, it's pretty much the same. She owns her body, that's her goods, and she's making a deal for selling it. But the scene looked nothing like what we see in the movies. She didn't exhibit her sexuality, she didn't laugh, she didn't look friendly at all. She was clearly and seriously stating her rules, her conditions, her price. Seems, they got a rough point during their negotiations, but reached an agreement in the end. She was victorious in imposing her conditions, I suppose. She then walked would him, as if they were long term friends. She never looked around. It never occured to her, that maybe someone like me is watching the whole thing. Never thought that there's someone out there who knows about her business deal. Or maybe she didn't care. And that's what I thought to be the case most probably. Why would she care? What did I or anyone else do for her? Did we care enough about how she ended up now, that she would care about us? What if she's labelled a prostitute in today's world where everybody has his/her own way? Why would anybody care about her anyway?

She wasn't the only prostitute I saw that night. I saw a couple of others. But I spent the whole night thinking about this girl. A million questions would run into my mind. At first I was full of pity. I was thinking about what could have been the reasons that drove her down this road. I said she is most probably a victim of poverty, bad life conditions, absence of parents, social negligence, you name it. Yet, as I thought about it more and more, I just said "Hey, she's in good health, she could work and earn a decent living." Yes, even if she never received any education, she can work. She just wouldn't be able to buy the expensive clothes which don't fit her anyway. But she wouldn't have to sleep with strangers. Isn't that enough?

Then another different scenario occured to me: A girl from the countryside, she gets married at the age of 15. Her husband disappears after a while and she's pregnant. She has a baby to take care of besides her family who sold her off to the rich man to solve their own problems. Instead of providing for her, she now has to provide for them and her baby. The man who got her the first groom offers another one on the condition that she gets a piece of the pie. One marriage after another, the girl discovers that she's actually a prostitute and that the man shares her profits. She decides to own her own business. She's now free. She puts the terms. She decides when, where, and for how much. She can dye her hair blonde, she can wear expensive clothes (even if she may look funny in our eyes, she feels happy and satisfied) , she can provide for herself and her baby. She can put him in a private school and pay its fees, he can have a future that is far better than what she had. Who cares if she's a prostitute? Does anybody know her? Even those in the shops who probably know about her business, would they refuse selling their goods to her if she has the price? What if she is the most honourable woman in the world but didn't have the money? Would they welcome her in their shop? Nobody cares. I repeat, NOBODY CARES.

She's free. She owns her body at last. The body that she always hid in shame. The body that received the beatings of her father. The body that was raped by a husband or whatever is the name. The body that everybody disgraces. It's hers at last. Nobody has a say over it, except herself. She chooses when and to whom to give it and for what price. She's no longer a victim. She has nothing to be ashamed of. She got the price for everything. That's what matters.

The real victims are the men who disgrace her by day and pay to sleep with her at night. The real victims are the cockoldmen who think that it is perfectly fine for them to have sexual freedom and refuse to see that it takes two to perform the act. The real victims are those men who go about looking for pleasure everywhere while they lock up their women at home. The real victims are those who live by this girl's money and still call for ethics and veiling women.
Prostitution is a dirty job, but whose hands are clean?

11 comments:

The Alien said...

wow ... strong post fantasia,
prostitution is not a good thing to do but as u said, noone has a clean hands

they are trying to cover Egypt with a religious cover, it is just a cove and has nothing to do with what acually happining.

i think that girl was serious about what she was doing because it is her choice to do it. she decided to sell her body so she do not care for u or anybody.

most of the time i do not blame her for what she is doing, i do not know how it ends up with her to do this, but i can imagine a thousand scenario.

there are many victims in this, starting from this girl and ending with u and me thinking about it.

د /إياد حرفوش said...

Dear Fantasia,
I missed your out-of-the-box articles for so long now. You came back with something about prostitution. what a co-incidence. Read my novel about it here:
http://eharfoush3.blogspot.com/2007/07/blog-post_516.html

Fantasia said...

alien,
Glad to see your comments once again. What I saw was painful indeed. I believe prostitution isn't the worst facet of corruption in today's world. Men make it seem as such, although they are the clients! But they do so in order to stain the woman who does it, thinking it would make them innocent. You can't call a man a whore, although he can do the same. A man who marries an old rich woman for her money, what do you call him?
I also believe that a man who takes bribes is a prostitute. You must pay him extra in order to get him to do his job. Once you give him money he treats you like a king, and even give you the title of Pasha!
A man who pays to have sex and calls his partner a prostitute, I can't know what to call him.. Really, does he think that he is any better than her? Just cause he is the one who pays?
Same in marriage, as long as a man provides for a woman, he believes that he owns her and that she should do whatever he asks in return. Marriage in that sense becomes prostitution as well.

Fantasia said...

eyad,
thanks for the link. I enjoyed the story tremendously. We just hit the different keys of the same issue. I don't see these girls as victims however, not anymore. They don't do this for a living, they do it for a higher standard of living. On the other hand I don't see them as the worst kind of people. There are those who do much worse.

The Alien said...

Marriage ... it is a prostitution.
u have money, u get any girl u want. u love, u live alone. that is how it is going here, u want to have sex? pay some money to a prostitute or pay it to a father.

اجندا حمرا said...

Dear Fantasia

a very touching post indeed
i've always thought those girls who work as prostitutes
as u mentioned poverty,lots of childern ,unable to work u name it
even if she is well educated u know i heard some rich and well educated girls work as prostitues not for the money but also for the pleasure
i cant belive how can someone drives pleasure from paying money for sex
if we look upon it as just a job we just cant overlook the fact that it includes a body that can be hurt during this job
prostitution not only those giving their bodies to either egyptians or those comin from the gulf countries by paying money to these girls
prostitution also includes those parents who sell their daughter under the name of marriage
for me i think working while earning a low salary is way better than selling my body to those who pay more
my body is like my temple my most scared place not for selling and i think every girl and woman should learn this
thank u for raising this issue fantasia

Miss Egyptiana "Trapped Soul" said...

sorry for being late :( many commented here ... but here i am again

let me start with whose hand is clean ... whose soul is innocent, those who first condemn any one are already full of dirt ...

marriage is a prostitution ... yeh legal one ... the example you wrote, and many others ... marriage is a business deal nowadays ... what u can give, and what i will offer in return for safe sex and a couple of noisy children ... "that was my first ever set of articles"

they are no victims... as u said, she is healthy, she can learn any profession, but she choosed to do this ... to control her body and her fate

i remember that i read an article about the virgin prostitutes, and the concept upon which they base their actions ... to be rich... to make money .. easy safe way ...

so they ain't victims, and no one is clean, and we are all living in a society who praise it secretly

Fantasia said...

Dear agenda,
Very valuable comment indeed. Thanks for also talking about men who pay for sex. Well, I can tell you that's the main source of their pleasure. Feeling that he owns this time with his money, makes him feel the freedom that he doesn't have with his wife. Moreover, the idea that the woman she sleeps with is taking money for the job, makes her so dirty and inferior in his eyes, which adds up to his pleasure. Men like to be violent towards women, it's what culture has been feeding in them for centuries. Therefore, paying money to a prostitute and using her body to exploit is like the ultimate playground for them.
Keep the inspiration going by allowing me to read more of your comments please.

Fantasia said...

Dear egyptiana,
powerful comment. May be our culture does encourage such a way of prostitution for sure. The idea of males as superiors and females as inferiors adds up to the state of a social market, if I may call it. Women have a price, no different than when they used to be in old times, sold as harem. In the absence of gender equality and justice, marriage will continue to be a corrupt institution, based on the same idea of prostitution as you said. It is just that men prefer to be the innocent partners in the crime by making the image of the prostitute so horrible. Forgetting that they are the majors investors in this business.

Tarek said...

You know, I consider it humiliating to the male party as well as the female party, and may be more.
How can someone force a woman to have sex with him, by paying her some money. It's really hard to imagine kissing a woman who doesn't like me, just because I pay her money! Feen el karama ya3ni!

Fantasia said...

tarek,
I raise the same questions here. Pleased to see that you consider it humiliating for men as well, cause all of the men who do so find it humiliating for the whores only. As if paying money means that they are better. Even the law (which was put by men) treat those cases in the same way. The man, who is the one hiring the girl in first place, asking for her services, becomes a witness if both of them were caught, while the girl faces prison.

"When I dare to be powerful - to use my strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid" - Audre Lorde