The 14th of August (2015), Simon Hedlin published a text in the Cadian Newspaper “The Globe and Mail”. As the text has no scientific substance at all I wrote this text to counter the false claims, distortions and even a lie that are referred to, but naturally the editorial staff of the paper refused to publish it. One are not allowed to clarify when abolitionist are using false facts. But this is what I wrote:
On 14th of August a Swedish former advisor to the former Swedish government, Simon Hedlin, in this paper wrongly claimed that the Swedish sex model is a success. He’s right in the matter, that some other countries stupidly enough followed the example (who ever said politicians are sane?), but in terms of prostitution and trafficking it is no success at all!
As all self-righteous moralists through history Hedlin must use the methods which always have been used for “proving” that he’s right, namely the methods of lying, exaggerating, “cherry-picking” and distorting “wrong” facts (that is, such that contradicts his own opinion). First he claims, that ‘New Zealand decriminalized prostitution in 2003 and yet the country’s Prostitution Law Review Committee found in its evaluation that a majority of prostituted persons felt that the decriminalization act “could do little about violence [in prostitution].”’ But in the NZ-report) this fake quotation doesn’t exist anywhere. But, contrary, the report says, that after the decriminalisation managed workers had raised their liability to report violent incidents and ‘Qualitative interviews revealed sex workers’ perception that these increased rights … protected them from violent attacks and were mentally enabling, allowing them to feel supported and safe.’. They also conclude, that ‘one of the most important health issues facing sex workers is violence and this is often encouraged by the illegal status of sex work.’ That is, among other, “the Swedish model.”
And what among other things is said in the same NZ-report is, that ‘Despite the perception that most sex workers are coerced into entering the sex industry, only a very small number of sex workers reported being made to work by someone else at the time of entry and after (an average of 3.9% across the three sectors).’ That means, that forcing into prostitution is minimal! Of course he also suppresses the fact, that in the decriminalized environment there are very few minor sexworkers (1.3 %), that ‘few young people who can generally be termed “at risk” are involved in prostitution’ and that ‘The Committee considers that in the case of New Zealand, there is no link between the sex industry and human trafficking.’ The later can connect to the false claim of Hedlin that ‘several studies have found that countries where buying sex is decriminalized, sex trafficking is more prevalent.’ The two so called studies he’s referring to is heavily criticised by professor Ronald Weitzer, who shows that the basic data used is full of errors, so they’re not adequate. As Weitzer also notes, the Dutch government’s trafficking agency has made this point in one of its annual reports: ‘It is often said in the media that lifting of the general ban on brothels [in 2000] has led to more THB [trafficking in human beings]. This is not correct.’ And in New Zeeland no victim of sex-trafficking has been reported since the decriminalization in 2003, which shows that decriminalization is the best way to eliminate sex-trafficking.
The above referred is also an example of Hedlin’s using of the methods “cherry-picking” and distortion. He ignores contradicting facts and uses unreliable works that are meant to convince the reader that he is right – even that he isn’t. Hard facts concerning sex-trafficking is, however, figures around convicted traffickers. In 2012 I studied those figures (from The Trafficking in persons annually reports) in my Swedish book about the sex-trafficking myth, and real figures is, that Sweden has 0.054 case of sex-trafficking in 100,000 inhabitants annually, to compare with, for example, New Zeeland, 0 in 100,000 inhabitants, 0.051 in Germany, 0.09 in Denmark, 0.008 in Japan, 0.032 in UK, 0.02 in Australia and 0.031 in USA (worldwide it’s about 0.048). The Swedish sex-purchase-law has done absolutely NOTHING to reduce sex-trafficking! That is a pure myth!
Furthermore, Hedlin tries to convince the reader, that prostitution in Denmark has raised a lot more than in Sweden and Norway, although we have no actual figures for any of the later countries (it’s impossible to investigate depending on the illegal status). So this is just a claim without any ground at all. But most important of all is, that the Swedish sex-purchase-law – opposite to Amnesty’s decision – never has been meant to be any protection or help for sex workers. As Don Kulick notes, ‘that the purpose of the law was first and foremost to “mark a stance” or “send a message” that “society” did not accept prostitution; hence, the impact of the law on prostitutes was not their primary concern.’ So, the purpose of the law is not to protect sex workers (who generally refuse the law), but to satisfy the egocentric feelings of those self-righteous politicians and activists who feel they are so “right” in their believes so they can justify that everyone must live according to their persuasion. That is, pure old moralistic bullying!
Talking about blowing anything, the Swedish sex-purchase-law has blown the lives of many sex-workers, but the law in itself cannot be proved to have helped anyone. Because of that abolitionists have to lie and distort to create false “evidence” for their moralistic believes and to be perceived as “adequate”.
But since they hadn’t bothered to do the research, they would be forced to clash swords with an imaginary foe. Such is the burden of the selfless crusader.