“Priest, 7 others held in sex sting”.  That is the headline of a story on the front page of our local small-city newspaper.  It’s sad that we are still doing such things here in the second decade of the 21st century and after 2 or 3 millenniums during which we should have learned that “prostitution” cannot be eliminated by legislation or police enforcement. As reported, the police ran ads in Craigslist offering some kind of sex for money at a specific hotel, and when some potential customers showed up, they were arrested.

Does anyone but me wonder why the Nashua police are spending their time and the taxpayers money cracking down on crime that does not exist? The police statistics say there were only three arrests for prostitution in the last two years — not exactly an epidemic. And why are the police advertising in Craigslist for services they consider illegal? From now on, if you happen to see an ad for sexual services on Craigslist, don’t worry — its probably just the cops.

The more enlightened Western countries have laws to protect buyers and sellers of sexual services from exploitation, not drive them into the underground economy where both are at risk. Apparently, the lawmakers in those countries realize there are worse ways to obtain sex than by paying for it from a willing adult provider.