Governing the Flesh Trade

By now almost everyone has heard about NY Governor Elliot Spitzer’s participation in a high-end prostitution ring. The criminal enterprise responsible for the Emperors Club VIP was indicted in federal court under the same law which prohibits human trafficking. The Governor himself engaged in such trafficking when he ordered up a $2000/hour seven diamond rated prostitute, Kristen, from NYC for delivery to his hotel room in Washington in violation of the Mann Act.

According to the New York Times:

The official said the discussions were likely to focus not on prostitution, but on how it was paid for: Whether the payments from Mr. Spitzer to the service were made in a way to conceal their purpose and source. That could amount to a crime called structuring, which carries a penalty of up to five years in prison.

All this seems so familiar which got me thinking. The Governor, who is oft described as arrogant and self-righteous, would make a great international adoption agency executive director. His agency? The Little Emperors Club VIP. His mission? Fulfilling hopes and dreams.

The gov’s got it all wrong. Instead of apologizing he should be spinning this in the best possible light. What’s needed here is a merger of the dialectic. Remember the PA Supreme Court’s timeless words: “our society has experienced a degree of principle-shifting?” Well that is all so old school now. The 21st century has brought us to a new level of enlightenment. All that prater about “practices . . . so abhorrent to every American that no one would traffic in human life for profit.” Come on! “Unfortunately, the lessons of the past are already forgotten.” How true, how true. But let’s get real man: just show me the money!!

In her siren song Debbie Daffodil Spivak reminded us that “any fees paid during the course of this process are not to buy a child. Rather, fees are for services to ensure the integrity of the process and keep corruption away.” Now you’re talking. The universal justifying mantra: “fee for services.” Storm the barricades!

All Governor Spitzer is really guilty of here is facilitating the seeding of a desperately needed fertile womb. Why outsource this vital business to India?? Like a true American, Spitzer is just fighting to keep this work here at home where it belongs. The $4000 he paid for three hours with V.I.P. Kristen was just a “fee for service” to “ensure the integrity of the process and keep corruption away.”

After all, “doing it right demands the navigation of laws, procedures and challenges by intelligent, conscientious, and ethical individuals who choose to dedicate their time and attention to help find families for children despite their qualifications to work elsewhere.”

I think this applies to both womb-Kristen and facilitator-Spitzer. But be careful of the Mann Act and criminal structuring which is where all that intelligent, conscientious and ethical individual stuff comes in. I trust that, given their qualifications to work elsewhere, the gov and Kristen were “doing it right.”

The focus should not be on the fact that fees are paid, but, rather, on transparency as to how the fees are spent and assurance that no fees were given to a birthmother to influence her decision in favor of making her child available for adoption.” Interesting. I’ll tell this to the US Attorney. “Critics should also know that international adoption is a non-profit humanitarian mission.”

Okay now I get it. Kristen and her womb were on a non-profit humanitarian mission and the fees, which were paid to run the Emperors Club website, pay the facilitators, deal with all that money and the banks and scheduling, etc. etc. were not to influence Kristen. No sir. She was on a mission

“I’m here for a purpose. I know what my purpose is. I am not a . . . moron, you know what I mean. So maybe that’s why girls think they’re difficult. That’s what it is, because you’re here for a purpose. Let’s not get it twisted. I know what I do, you know. I’d be like, listen dude, you really want the sex? You know what I mean?”

“Individuals working in this field have often given up lucrative careers in other industries to help these children.” Thank you Deb. “We are highly trained, exceedingly committed, and passionate about the work we do.” Just like Kristen. Back to Deb:

Indeed, child trafficking [prostitution] is a very real threat to the well-being of all children [women] and must be routed out at all costs. It also exploits the desperation of birth mothers [women] to want to do what seems best for their children under difficult circumstances by going around the law and procedures to achieve an improper end. It is incumbent upon all of us to correct this confusion by reminding those around us that the former is a poison, while the latter is a blessing. Using the terms interchangeably perpetuates the notion that international adoption is inherently corrupt.

Correcting confusion on this issue means forgetting the lessons of the past and orienting our thinking in a way which focuses on the blessing of a fertile womb, unfulfilled hopes and dreams, and the fees for services which ensure the integrity of the process and keep corruption away.

Governor by following the international adoption playas book, you can weather this storm while prospering in the process. And if some backward thinking sops succeed in raising the discarded notion of “trafficking in human life for profit” and you are forced out, think of this as an opportunity to begin a whole new vocation. After all, everyone knows you gave up a lucrative career in other industries to help the cause. Why not fill an empty womb as well?

1 Reply to "Governing the Flesh Trade"

  • Anonymous
    March 11, 2008 (11:48 am)

    Reminds me of Larry Graig, the proud chairman of the Congressional Coalition on Adoption. He travelled the world to get children for the adoption industry. Until he had to resign, admit sex scandal.