Dennis Hof, the outspoken owner of brothels featured in HBO’s “Cathouse” and author of “The Art of the Pimp,” unseated a three-term assemblyman in Nevada’s Republican primary. As someone who works in politics, I have come to expect the unexpected the last couple of years, but as a survivor of child sex trafficking and child pornography, this is just too much emotionally.
[T]his same man who requires women who decide they don’t want to sell their bodies to literally pay for their freedom is most likely going to be a state assemblyman? This man who requires women who work in the brothels to sleep with him for free and his friends for free or minimal pay in order to get his approval is going to serve as a community role model? The one who has been accused by multiple women of rape, proudly sells virginities and boasts about sleeping with 18-year olds on their birthdays is going to have a vote on what protections victims of sexual assault have in this state? What 17-year old who hasn’t been exploited, coerced or traumatized in her young life willfully chooses to have sex with an old man on her 18th birthday?
Many people in Nevada don’t understand why a survivor of child sex trafficking and child pornography has such a problem with legalized prostitution to begin with. These same people don’t understand the chaos and grip of PTSD caused by these childhood abuses that so often throw the lie of “easy money” in the face of victims. Nor do they understand how legalized prostitution expands and welcomes the demand for illegal prostitution and sex trafficking, including of children.