Y’all might recall that along with “The Deadliest Catch” and “Wicked Tuna,” I watch a tv show called “Nashville” religiously. For those unaware, “Nashville” is a monstrous soap opera about the country music business with an emphasis on the music and songwriting unique to “Music City.”
Mostly, the “soap” component of the show is secondary (at least for me) or was until the writers introduced a “pretty woman” subplot in which the Mayor of Nashville falls for a blind date with whom he is set up by a music mogul – not realizing that she’s been hired to entertain the VIP. In the last two episodes, the writers have been continuing along this path. Apparently, it’s a plot twist that they will be expanding upon in the coming weeks.
For me, this is a very old story…as I’ve seen it played out in real life on numerous occasions. Whether two people actually hook up in this manner…or it’s just guys who live in a fantasy world and then get their feelings hurt…or their wallets emptied…the ubiquity of this type of interplay is remarkable. Whether it’s on the tube, silver screen or in real life, it just seems to be everywhere.
Whatever…and for whatever reason…my immediate reaction to watching the Nashville subplot unfold was a “head shake” thought of wonderment that if this stuff is so in the culture…and so much a part of our collective romantic lives…why is there such a bum rush by law enforcement to punish purveyors and purchasers alike in the equation? I mean…who cares?
The only rational explanation for why LE is so vigilant in this area comes from the notion that these exchanges between consenting adults are rife with coercion and trafficking. And this is a phantom they’ve been chasing for quite some time. It seems like on every occasion that the authorities make some high profile bust, they don’t really get what they want: a network of coercive pimps and traffickers that would make the entire initiative look meaningful. The sorry truth is that it’s hard to catch fish in a bathtub…and it’s hard to find traffickers where there aren’t any. While I’m sure there are pimps and traffickers in the business, their numbers do not warrant all this attention.
Now it’s obvious…or it should be…that I know this business better than almost everybody who chases these purveyors because essentially, I’ve been in it for 18 years. And it’s equally obvious to me that the law and order crew needs to take a course in just how this whole deal works. There are a lot of man hours and tax dollars being spent on initiatives with questionable value…conducted by officials with a limited understanding of what they’re chasing in the first place. A quick 101 course with the accompanying enlightenment might trim a lot of fat (and cost) from the process.
And ya know…just for once, I’d like to see a referendum on the ballot which read something like this: “Do you want the government to continue spending an inordinate amount of money busting escorts? Or would you rather we legalize the business…regulate it…and derive much-needed income by taxing it?” I can’t see the electorate voting for Plan A. It just doesn’t make any sense.
I’m glad “Nashville” has written the aforementioned subplot into the script because it will eventually serve to de-demonize an industry which provides a very basic service to so many people who demand it. And it provides work for a division of women not all of whom spend the money on drugs. I know a lot of mothers who support children via this line of work.
And before I go, I’d like to advance a theory that the entire seduction and procreation scheme is a continuum and not a cut and dried affair at all. And pursuant to that theory, where does law enforcement draw the line as to what’s legal and what’s illegal activity?
Let’s say a dorky guy attempts to seduce a hot chick by buying her expensive dinners, clothing and gifts for which she puts out sexually in exchange? Why is that legal when being up front about the interaction and simply asking for money is a crime? Isn’t the former individual being shady while the latter straightforward? Why would the shady woman get off while the straightforward girl gets locked up?
It’s a fucking mess if you ask me. European countries are much more evolved in this realm. They do not spend all this money going after the escort industry. So why are we – the leaders of the world – so backward on this issue? And why am I who nobody’s listening to anyway…going on about this issue? Good point. I’ll stop now and just wait for the next episode of Nashville so I can see what happens between the Mayor and his new love interest. I wonder if they’ll write into the plot that the Mayor goes to jail and loses his job for the crime of getting set up with an escort who he didn’t know was an escort in the first place? Ya see now that would make sense! Let’s put the guy behind bars because he didn’t commit a crime! At least, that would be consistent!
On a lighter note, I end this entry with one of the stars of “Nashville” (the tv show) singing one of the songs from the show at The Grand Ole Opry. Very mushy and sentimental but irresistible nonetheless.