The topic of the crackdown on prostitution in mainland China is quite hot recently. Many people say it might be a good idea to legalize prostitution in mainland China as Netherland does and put the whole industry under control or supervision of the government. That's pretty interesting and I was even fascinated by this idea at first sight. But I then pondered over it for a while and finally drew the conclusion that it's absolutely not feasible in China or even most of the places in the world, unless the society becomes highly civilized.
The first and foremost obstacle we have to tackle on the way to legal prostitution is the security of the prostitutes, which I suppose involves both physical security and mental or emotional security/health.
Many countries who legalizes prostitution industry tend to restrict prostitutes to work on their own as individual sex workers, without the participation of the pimps or procuresses and other organizers. Theoretically it rids the prostitutes of the risk of being exploited or abused by others and women’s rights could be respected and protected thereby. But it seems at least in China that the organizers of prostitution are kind of like the sanctuary of the girls. Without the protection from the so called criminal gangs, those delicate young girl would be vulnerable to the real crime from their clients. They probably would not be paid after the service is wrapped up. They might be robbed, raped, totured or even killed when they are doing their business. The risk that could be resulted without pimping organization is definitely much higher, considering the qualities of their potential clients.
There is another factor that should be taken into account, which is the self-esteem or the mental and emotional health of the prostitutes. With the good money made out of the sex service, the girls probably would not feel good or decent. That’s because the social moral standard views prostitution as simply immortal, sinful and an occupation for those of ignorance. You can't expect those girls with good education and decent family background or those alleged bluestocking women elites（Some of them actually are advocating the legalization of prostitution. I really hope they could kick this off by being a sex worker themselves. That would be a strong manifestation）get involved in prostitution in mainland China. The prostitutes are always discriminated. People sniff at them, despise them and condemn them. This deters all the good girls, as far as the cultural quality is concerned, from joining in the industry. Thus a kind of vicious spiral is caused that the more so called bad girls with limited education get involved, the worse the prostitition internal milieu would become. The low social status and lack of knowledge, including the basic psychological knowledge, can be very detrimental to the mental health of the prostitutes and eventually various social problems and crime would be caused.
Of course some of the sexual or feminine liberalists could argue there is nothing wrong for women to exploit their own bodies and the social status of the prostitutes should be higher or at least as high as those average people. The occupation should be treated as any other job in the world. But if it is so, then being prostitutes can potentially become a pretty good job with small effort (probably some pleasure inside) and big outcome. Imagine when some of the prostitutes are honored the title of Chinese Model Worker(For those who may not know, it’s a kind of supreme honor granted by Chinese government) and the mainstream media call upon everyone to learn from them. There would must be lots of girls, including those with good education and family background, rushing into this industry to work hard and compete among one another. One consequence could be that few people will ever work hard in the normal industries and the economy could be devastated.