Monday, July 24, 2006

TIMES SQUARE ON THE TOWN SQUARE, or ARCH STREET COMES TO MAIN STREET

By Times Square I don't mean the Times Square of today. No Disney or anything like that. What I mean is the pre - Giuliani Times Square. Strip clubs, X - rated theatres, brothels. A place you wouldn't bring the kids.
Arch Street was Philadelphia's answer to Times Square.
Although New York and Philly have cleaned up their erstwhile "red-light" districts, look out, it's here.
No, you won't see streetwalkers strolling Freehold or Red Bank. It's a lot more subtle than that. A look in The Asbury Park Press classified Business & Service Directory under "Massage" will reveal that much more than "therapy" is offered. The Saturday July 22 issue advertises "AAA NUDE 24/7"; a bit further down the page a "shemale" is advertised. "DOM Avail" can also be found. While I'm sure many of the other advertisers are legitimate, the ones referenced above would appear to refer to some type of prostitution.
Let's take another look at the page. Seven advertise as "Asian", another two as "Oriental". Another advertises as "Ukrainian Massage", while yet another under the heading "East European" promotes their "Russian, Ukrainian, Latvian Staff".
How is nationality relevant?
Well, normally it isn't. Let's take a look, however, at the world of prostitution. It's no longer limited to the fresh-faced Midwestern girls leaving the cheerleading squad and farm life behind, coming to New York and hooking up with a right-out-of-Hollywood-type pimp, usually black, wearing a loud suit, wide-brimmed hat with an arching plume and driving a loaded pink Cadillac. Nor is it any longer under the kindly eye of a matronly "madam".
Often what you have today are international rings luring unsuspecting young women with the promise of a life of opportunity in the United States. Unfortunately, they are forced into a life of slavery, often as prostitutes or domestics. Some women or children are forced to work in sweat shops. Many of these women come from Eastern Europe or the Far East.
This is called human trafficking.
Many of these international rings use the profits to fund other illegal activity; some may even fund terrorism.
What to do? Well, obviously, if there's any doubt about a business, don't patronize it. Report suspicious activity to the police. If you'd like a massage, stick to reputable practitioners; many of these can be found at your gym, or referred by a chiropractor's office.
In our area, Congressman Chris Smith, a champion of human rights in the spirit of Lincoln himself, has been a national leader in the fight against human trafficking.

9 comments:

JIM_PURCELL said...

Human trafficking is a terrible thing. Thank you for bringing attention to this problem and raising peoples' awareness.

Kramer Hall said...

But the legit places charge 7% sales tax! Some Happy Ending!

Honest Abe said...

Jim, if you wish to do a write-up in Courier, feel free to quote from my post. It's important to get the word out. (You'd think someone at the APP would figure something out. It's only being advertised in their paper!)

William H Seward said...

Wouldn't it be nice if we had an State Attorney General who would do something about this.

Honest Abe said...

But-but-but. I thought the Attorney General's job was to deflect legal problems away from the Democratic administration!

William H Seward said...

Honest Abe said...
But-but-but. I thought the Attorney General's job was to deflect legal problems away from the Democratic administration!

Great job she's doing too! The BPU audit was released today. Things are looking up for TK2

JIM_PURCELL said...

I'm not surprised Congressman Smith has done work on this. Good guy. He's a credit to the county.

Michael Laffey said...

Abe, you have hit on a pet peeve of mine.
Never mind the AG how about the Monmouth County Prosecuter doing something.

And how about that protector of all that is good, that guardian of morals the "Asbury Park Press" making money off adds that are obviously not for massages or escorts.

Good heavens could it be. Are they Hypocrites at the APP?

Honest Abe said...

I guess as long as the money is green it's OK with the APP. A shame.