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I was the pimp mentioned by Julie Bindel in the above tweet. The fact that I am not a pimp is an irrelevance that our lovely Julie simply chooses to ignore.
Judging by her tweet and the fact that she is listening to Snoop Dogg whom we learn in a later tweet is also to be interviewed perhaps suggests a disturbing insight into Julie’s secret fantasy world. I ponder the idea that perhaps Julie B has developed a fetishistic longing to be some pimps bitch? Snoop Doggs or heaven forbid mine?
I am even beginning to have night time fantasies of Julie B in a short black skirt and nipple tassel’s shaking her “Ass” to some gansta rap and begging to be my “hoe”…As a sensitive homosexual I am actively considering medication to deal with these disturbing images.
The problem is that I agreed, perhaps foolishly, to an invitation by Julie Bindel and Cath Elliot to give an interview on unionisation of sex work and sex work as “work”. The interview, they said, was part of some research for an article they were both writing for the Sunday Telegraph magazine.
Curiosity more than anything else drove me to agree to the interview and over lunch, paid for by Julie B and Cath Elliot, I was sort of interviewed. I say sort of interviewed because the two and a half hours was filled mainly with Julie B complaining about what she referred to as “The Academy” meaning most of the academic establishment who disagree with her position that sex work is always violence against women, reproaching the IUSW for not being representative of sex workers or the London adult entertainment GMB branch for not being a proper trade union branch and refusing to accept that I was a sex worker and insisting despite the evidence and my protestations that I was just a pimp pretending to be a sex worker.
Personally I have nothing against being called a pimp, what I object to is the refusal of both Julie Bindel and Cath Elliot to listen. But then the world and its uncle know they never listen to sex workers unless they claim the role of victim so why should I be any different?
The ideology Cath and Julie promote, a deviant form of feminism, was from the start of the interview obviously more important than reporting anything that I would say. Julie Bindel even ended the interview with a sigh stating that “Even if we sat there for 24 years we would never agree”. Well; no we are never going to agree but then getting me to agree was not the stated point of the interview, listening to me and reporting my views on the stated subject surely was. I await however the article and perhaps to a pleasant surprise.
During the interview Julie B persisted in promoting a representation of pimping as abusive and she ranted about the awfulness of a woman “fucking” all night for £650 pounds of which her pimp would then take 30%. I presumed she was here referring to an overnight; of which I have done many during my eleven years in the business.
Apart from the obvious prejudice inherent in her scenario it was very clear how little she knew about the industry or the role of management within the industry or why so many sex workers preferred to work through a third party, or as she referred to them a pimp.
I retorted once during the interview that “Often what she referred to as pimps we (meaning sex workers) referred to as managers”. She oddly at this point for a brief moment contradicted herself by acknowledging that there were good managements before again reverting back to her previous rant that anyone who profited from a woman selling sex was a pimp and therefore by definition the vilest of creatures, a criminal.
It struck me how absurd her position was but then I realised that I had heard these same rants not only from Julie Bindel but from some fellow sex worker activists who really should know better. Outside the Marxist view that all labour is exploitation and therefore by definition all managers or employers are evil exploiters (and there are many who share this Marxist ideology within the sex worker movement) there is also an odd cultural anomaly at work that further stigmatises the already stigmatised.
It is bad in our society to sell sex because you challenge societal norms of social and sexual behaviour by undermining the ideal of heterosexual monogamy, you challenge societal constraints on female sexuality, you create temptation that undermines the constraints placed upon male responsibility as fathers and you exploit their sexual weakness. In short you are a sinner and even a criminal.
The pimp or the madam present easy scape goats for societal guilt because they facilitate the committing of sin or of crime. They, like the whores they represent, profit from our communal inability to control sexual desires. The role of the whore and the pimp as societal bogey men is one of the most visual and persistent in our culture.
To most people the pimp exemplifies aggression, exploitation and coercion. The reality within the industry is that most managers within prostitution do their very best to represent self employed sex workers and provide a service in return for a percentage of the appointment fee. Management within the sex industry is a skill. There are of course as Julie Bindel understood good managers and yes there are bad managers but is this not true of every industry? The fact that there is no regulation of prostitution to control bad managements is the fault of the state not the industry.
The law does not differentiate between the great majority of managers who do their best to represent sex workers, and make sure that they are safe and those who deliberately abuse and exploit. This failure of our legal system is both absurd and wrong.
Managers are as much sex workers as the people they represent and due the respect and support of all sex workers and especially sex worker activists. In the present circumstances when all sex workers equally share stigma and managements especially suffer the consequences of criminalisation then we all need the support of our fellow sex workers and trade unions like the GMB to offer us protection and recognition.
During the interview a colleague took notes. With her permission I have attached a condensed resume of the main points raised during the interview.
Now for me its back to reading the instruction on that medication to deal with those images of “Our Julie” in suspenders and stockings a slipping and a sliding up that pole….Help
Julie Bindel Promised nothing would be taken out of context and you (Douglas) would not be misquoted. She said article was about unionisation. She is a member of NUJ.
1st point. She said she wanted to ask what it’s about rather than enter into the prevailing arguments, then proceeded to push her idea of what a union was.
She saw IUSW as a lobby and campaign group. You explained that there were lobby functions naturally, but that there were separate trade union functions represented through the GMB London adult Entertainment branch which was separate from the IUSW activism group.
JB insisted you were a spokesperson but you (Douglas) explained in fine detail you were simply an activist, not a spokesperson, so you spoke only for yourself.
Next issue. Who should be a member? can’t be union if membership is open to punters and management.
targeted you as management despite you explaining you were a working whore.
JB insisted she didn’t believe you were a whore.
Next issue. Sex workers do it as they have various problems and/or are coerced. You explained that it’s just like any other industry. some do have problems but the satisfied are silent and don’t. C.E (Cath Elliot) asked why you were a sex worker. You said you liked it, fitted into your lifestyle etc
Next issue why are male reps so vocal? You explained that you try to get women to speak up, but they don’t. you surmised they might have more to lose. i.e. families if they are identified, so they keep their heads down.
Next issue. What about coercion and danger to street workers. e.g. recent murders. You said you decry current legislation which is increasing danger. You are for decriminalisation, not legalisation. You explained the difference. You said needed from a human rights point of view.
Julie and Cath see pimps as getting women to work by coercion or force. See pimps as pushing evil, which they basically define as man in power with woman as victim.
They say that the only way to take coercion or force out of the equation is to take the managers out of the equation.
They see women suffering violence at the hands of their punters as well as their managers. Relayed that Thierry had said he had suffered violence.
They see women suffering damage from the sex act. See them as having no choice but to do it.
You (Douglas) said not all management are what Julie and Cath call pimps. You (Douglas) said that independent working women seek out an agency for the service it offers of their own free will.
You (Douglas)said you had never suffered abuse and that the vast majority of sex workers are ignored because they aren’t having trouble.
JB insisted you were a niche market and therefore your experiences were’t representative. ( is this JB acknowledging you ARE a whore?)
JB insisted you were promoting yourself as a representative.
You said you only speak for yourself, you are an activist and a human rights activist.
JB asked you to tell them about your falling outs with the ISWU. Said it was because you were a co owner of an escort agency.
You said there was no falling out, that the agency was your partner’s business.
You explained that you always supported the union and worked for unionisation.
JB asked “But aren’t you Tory?” Why would you be interested in the rights of sex workers rather than simply profits.
You (Douglas) explained you weren’t a socialist or supporter of the labour party who treated sex workers appallingly. Sex workers need a strong union. Anyone as stigmatised and criminalised as sex workers needed representation.
JB asked how you can square promoting unionisation with representing profiteers of the industry.
You (Douglas) asked what evidence she had of this assertion.
JB said that there are people included who are happy to make profit from other people. Pointed out things said by Cath Stephens etc.
You pointed out again that you don’t represent anyone but yourself. Your only position is treasurer. You pointed out that you have worked for democracy and to that end, a northern branch for the union so that local people get a chance to be heard.
CE (Cath Elliot) wanted to know if the ISWU was ruled by committee and if you were on that committee.
You (Douglas) explained you aren’t and don’t want to stand.
JB insisted that there were even punters included in the union.
You explained this was the fault of GMB rules and she should take this up with the GMB re any issues over membership.
On legalisation versus decriminalisation.
You explained why legalisation was bad for sex workers and why decriminalisation was good.
JB asked if you meant the sex industry should be completely left alone.
You (Douglas) said it should be treated like any other industry.
CE asked if that meant Taxed etc.
You (Douglas)said yes, including being liable to health and safety laws, health insurance and the protection of the law just like New Zealand.
JB insisted decriminalisation would exonerate pimping by which she meant getting the women to work by coercion and force.
You (Douglas)said it would be the exact opposite, it would give protection and do away with the associated criminal activity.
You (Douglas) said you were really surprised at how well organised for safety the industry is despite most forms of self organisation being criminalised.
JB said she understood she was diametrically opposed to you and would never agree to decriminalisation as she could not see this as a means of giving safety to these women.
You (Douglas) asked J if she was a Marxist.
JB said no, but asked about your ideology.
You (Douglas) explained you were a pagan, a follower of the goddess Isis, who in one manifestation, was the great whore.
You (Douglas) briefly mentioned women’s spirituality movement and Goddess worship.
JB claimed to know nothing of women’s spirituality movement.