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Monday, November 08, 2004

Guatemalan prostitute's soccer team

There's an interesting article at the BBC on a Guatemalan soccer team of prostitutes, one of many that have sprung up recently in the country to compete with other local women's soccer teams. As could be expected, while prostitutes are free to exist as long as they pretend they are inhuman fucking machines, people get all bent out of shape if they actually try to do something else.

The All-Stars' first game was against a team from a high class private girl's school.

The game had only been going for a few minutes when the horrified parents of these girls discovered exactly who their opponents were.

They immediately insisted on stopping the game and getting the All-Stars thrown out of the league.

The impetus to form the teams was exactly to combat the misconception that prostitutes are subhuman, though.

This attitude is part of the reason why the All-Stars are now touring Guatemala, playing against teams of other prostitutes. They insist their aim is to gain more respect and acknowledgement that all of them are women, like anyone else.

Most of them, they argue, have been forced into prostitution because they have no alternative, or need to work to support their families.

Above and beyond this, the All-Stars are also seeking to draw attention to a much more serious problem affecting Guatemala at the moment - the number of women who are brutally murdered.

So far this year, as many as 50 women a month have been killed, and many of them have been prostitutes.

I remember hearing surprised reactions on the radio and on TV when the courtroom was packed full of relatives of the victims when the Green River killer confessed to murdering 50 prostitutes. People don't tend to think of prostitutes as having things like parents, husbands, and children who would miss them if they died. That dehumanizing attitude is one of the biggest reasons that prostitutes are singled out for this kind of violence. That and the fact that murderers have more access to them than any other women. And because society at large concurs with prostitute-murderers that prostitutes are subhuman, there can be problems getting the same protection and justice for prostitutes as there is for other people. (Though I would argue that this wasn't as big a factor in the Green River murders as it is in other prostitute-murder cases.) Efforts like this can go a long was to shaking up people's prejudices, so I wish the Tigers of Desire (love the name!) and company all the luck in the world.

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