Prostitution. The selling of sexual favors in a direct exchange for cash. The majority of people find the entire concept distasteful, but as it's often referred to as the world's oldest profession, it's clearly an acquired taste. Yes, people have been using hoes for pleasure longer than they have used them for agriculture, and so it's certainly a strange thing to see that this most basic exchange of goods and services for currency is largely illegal in the capitalistic consumer society in which we live today.
Now, before I say any of what I have to say, please realize that this is not for me. I'm somewhat happily committed (and thereby fulfilled in that area, as is requisite), so I have no need of their services. I just think it's a little strange that some people can't ply their trade in the only career field they're good at. I also believe we're squandering a chance to boost our economy. What better way to stimulate it than by stimulating those who stimulate it...using a domestically produced, recession-proof, infinitely renewable resource? It's common sense to me, but others may need the benefits outlined in more detail...and so:
-Safety. If there's one thing we should know after the last civilization or so, it's that people are going to do it anyway. How do you stop someone from selling an item that's theirs to begin with, that they take everywhere they go, and that nobody can prove they sold unless they caught them in the act of doing so? That's right, you don't. So what do you do instead? Harm reduction...and a lot of that is done simply through legalization.
In Nevada, the only state where it's currently legal, there is a licensing process, disease screening, and regular health checkups mandated for all sex workers. Anyone who's ever taken a ride home from a shady part of town smelling like sweat, shame and chlamydia knows why those things are good ideas. By standardizing the requirements to legally sell sex, you create a better class of hoe.
Also, by making it a legal enterprise, you destroy (or at least cripple) the black market, the seedy underbelly, and all the other dangerous cliches of the business...who's going to wander down alleys looking for loving in all the wrong places when they could just go to an official facility, check the hoefax, make the transaction, and keep their life moving? This also makes the sex slave trade less attractive, as getting illegal immigrants licensed for anything is somewhat difficult.
-Taxes. Pretty much anything purchased legally requires a tax be paid, and this would be no different. As mentioned, this is one of the few areas of commerce that are pretty much unaffected by the financial flux of an unstable economy, since it has been successfully running since there was no word for "economy". The tax revenue made from the sale of consensual sex would be significant...too much so to be ignored for reasons of universal palatability. Nobody can say our schools, social programs, and infrastructure couldn't use the money. If people laying on their backs can help our country move forward, I'm all for it.
-Romance. Stay with me here. In our modern world, love has a number of skewed interpretations, many having directly to do with the crotch. People will tell grandiose lies, make vast investments of time and capital, and make all manner of false commitments under the banner of "affection", purely to get into the pants of their target. I'm betting there would be somewhat less of that if one could shell out a couple hundreds bucks and satisfy their carnal desires and not have to be worried about being thrown in jail with rapists and murderers.Besides, in a time when one could simply pay a set amount to buy someone to play with for a while, would anyone play the dating game unless they were looking for companionship beyond the night?
As I so often say, people will get into relationships solely for good sex and leave one purely because of bad. Why would they get into one at all if that's really all they want and they could get it with way less hassle than actually getting to know somebody? It would sure cut down on the number of marriages stemming from purely physical reasons. Nobody can tell me that's not a good thing to be more confident that when somebody shows interest in you, they're showing it in all of you. (Better, now you're no longer a gold-digger, you're career-oriented!)
I realize most of that sounds like my argument on another issue, but that doesn't make it any less true. Besides the fact that prostitution is done on a regular basis regardless of its' legal status, those are 3 pretty good reasons why it should be as legal to sell orgasms as it is to sell Snuggies (and we all know how I despise those). People are promiscuous for absolutely free, who's to say one can't be an entreprewhore? For that matter, what else is being paid to do pornography but prostitution?
Of course, I realize there would be the question of advertising, and I'll certainly agree that sex probably shouldn't be plastered all over the media as a result of this potential new legalization...but then again, it is anyway. (Even more interesting, open the back pages of a big-city independent newspaper sometime.) It seems that it's already legal as long as you know to call it something else. All that typed, I'm really not sure why prostitution is still illegal...are you?