Tuesday, August 4, 2015
OPEN LETTER TO MAXINE DOOGAN OF THE EROTIC SERVICE PROVIDERS LEGAL EDUCATIONAL RESEARCH
Sex Workers Anonymous (formerly Prostitutes Anonymous)
(702) 468-4529 Telephone
August 3, 2015
Maxine Doogan aka Mistress Matisse
Erotic Service Providers Union
Re: Conflicts of Interest Open Letter
I'm frankly not understanding your hostility towards our program one bit. Margo St. James was supportive of our program and helped me found our group actually when we were originally called "Prostitutes Anonymous". SWOP despite having to remain neutral on issues publicly,has had many individual members, and even chapter leaders, reach out to us in support these last few months. One member I won't name even said to us “if anyone gives you trouble you tell me their name and I'll go talk to them”.
Others have said not so nice things about the people in your corner who have been our loud detractors over the last few months – ever since we served the show “8 Minutes” with our notice of intent to obtain an injunction and to sue them for defamation of all sex workers where four hours after we did so they canceled. A letter that interestingly was not mentioned on the CNN show "The Truth about * Minutes" for some reason - which was a truth kept from the general public.
Funny how that show seems to have set off this opposition suddenly from your corner despite the fact we've been right here since 1987 and haven't heard a peep out of anyone before that show started airing and your recent lawsuit was filed. Opposition which by the way has been nothing but lies and distortions without one ring of truth. If it were true - people wouldn't be hiding while making the accusations under false names and denying they're builders of websites against us when confronted. I'm being completely honest however - as well as open and using my real name as I am not engaging in such shadow tactics.
I'm also shocked by your hostility towards us in light of the fact we serve many of the same purposes, as well as some services frankly you can't offer, or shouldn't, legally offer, through your group - and because you have not once sat down with me for two minutes to even find out what it is exactly we do. Your assumption of us being like other groups like Kevin Brown's, D'Lita Miller's, Shelley Lubben's, Annie Lobert, or Samoly Mam is frankly not only quite ignorant of you – it goes against what you say you stand for which is the best interests of the sex worker.
Especially since we have not only been quite vocal against these frauds pretending to care about helping our community – but we're even the group that found the investigative team that exposed Samoly Mam AND the attorney's that won the ACLU vs. Catholics Bishop's case that was using prostitutes to fill up adoption mills illegally while using federal money to do so. http://www.nationalreview.com/article/417399/why-aclu-suing-stop-catholics-sheltering-women-ian-tuttle Cases which we didn't see you anywhere near - especially when we were trying to find support for the “cease and desist” letter we served against Project Rose, and 10 other programs just like it – which resulted in them all being shut down. Nor in cases like where we got the Ryan White Foundation to not grant $3.8 million dollars this year to the AHF who is trying to censor the porn industry through it's smoke screen of the condom issue. Again, all cases we haven't seen your support of one bit through-out. Nor in cases today where we defended Christy Mack's decisions in her relationship with War Machine on national radio today either. https://soundcloud.com/brian-shapiro-2/domestic-violence-in-the-mma-and-sex-crimes-discussion-with-jody-williams
Yesterday we heard that women who had been arrested in San Diego, California for prostitution – but who resided in Las Vegas, Nevada were being forced under threat of incarceration to attend weekly diversion classes back in San Diego, California which not only cost money but are run by someone who does not afford them confidentiality over what they may say or do in these classes which could be further used against them should they find themselves re-arrested again. Maybe for even something they might have said in these classes.
This is ABSOLUTELY unnecessary since Las Vegas residents can easily attend Sex Workers Anonymous meetings at no expense in Las Vegas, and at which what they say and do is kept entirely confidential – and court cards from SWA are accepted in any court in this country because of existing laws already on the books accepting cards from 12 step programs afforded us by programs like Alcoholics Anonymous. Making this San Diego trips of theirs completely unnecessary and only happening because the person in charge of said program was not advising these women of local options.
After chastising the woman running this program for not spending two minutes online looking up a Las Vegas substitute program for these women who are having to pay for attending this diversion program once she realized they were making this trip AND also pointing out that it's “counter productive” for the intent of her program (how are they supposed to get a 9 to 5 job in Las Vegas if having to go to San Diego weekly to stay out of jail, and pay for the expense of these travels at the same time WITHOUT tricking) – we were able to negotiate these women being referred back to a Las Vegas group of SWA to fulfill their court requirements in a manner which if they had advocated for themselves like I did for them they might have found themselves back in jail. In a manner I'd like to point out that YOU can't either as you don't have a program that would satisfy a court's requirement for a diversion program while we do. A tiny matter that you as a dominatrix might not have to consider since it's unlikely you'll ever be arrested for prostitution. But it's a fact prostitutes face every time they turn a trick in the USA.
But you have been convicted of pimping. Which surprises me to find that out since you seem very ignorant also about what the laws are regarding pimping, I'm well aware of it after they arrested my mother for pimping me when I handed her a $20 bill for a bucket of chicken that an undercover cop took a picture of as proof she'd received money from me. When my mother and I both threatened to fight those ridiculous charges – the law then threatened to arrest my then 70 year old grandmother for pimping me because they had my check paying for her electric bill. THAT's why I took a plea bargain – refusing to snitch out other sex workers and not wanting to put my grandmother through the shame an trauma of being arrested because I was refusing to cooperate with the DA and snitch on others.
In other words, taking so much as $1.00 from the earnings of a “known” prostitute is a felony of pimping. Now mind you “known” is an interesting term because I would like to point out I had no prior arrests for prostitution and I was not a public “sex worker” like you clearly at at this time. The law also states that the requirement for “known” is that one other prostitute with a record for it point to you and say you are one. Meaning I think you fit the legal requirement of a “known” prostitute which is still illegal in the state of California. Something you're well aware of since you're lobbying to have sex work decriminalized.
Oh I'm sorry did I say “lobby”? Oh no you can't legally do that without being a registered lobbyist in California and your 501c3 status prohibits you from lobbying for legal change so technically you're “suing” to see decriminalization to be brought about in California. So in light of the fact you're now suing four district attorney's, and Kamala Harris, the state's US Attorney – I would think you'd be minding your P & Q's legally right now. Especially in light of the fact that anyone, and I mean anyone, who has challenged her has suffered big grief. Mitchell Stein sued her on behalf of the homeowners who were illegally foreclosed upon by Bank of America, one of her campaign donors, when no one else would and he wound up doing 17 years in jail after they uncovered him doing some kind of stock fraud (supposedly).
In my case, I've only criticized her office for two things (1) not charging Snoop Dogg with pandering after his public confession about pimping across the USA during his 2003 tour where many women were trafficked and harmed – something he has not acknowledged yet nor apologized to these victims for as to why I've written her office asking charges of pandering be investigated, especially since he's now around so many young children because of his youth football league now(that I speak about more on www.boycottsnoop.com), and (2) not following up on a trafficking case involving possibly a corrupt police unit in Pasadena, California who have already been in so much trouble they're just been audited, along with a corrupt judge who supposedly put two fake prostitution charges on a Chinese woman's record when she announced to her traffickers that she didn't want to prostitute anymore at 50 years of age. A case that can be read more about at http://sanitytodayonline.blogspot.com/2015/05/the-sound-of-music-and-pasadena.html
She's been doing this for them since she was eight years old, and there's already been three convictions of pimps in this operation, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/07/24/gary-kidgell-yan-zhang-sex-trafficking-kansas_n_3647993.html who also threatened to have her deported where she'd be executed if she didn't “back down” and “go back to work”. Which before Liang Yaohui's arrest could easily have been believed to have happen to her. A case I can't get anyone to look at our evidence about what's happened to this woman who is being forced to prostitute against her will as we speak because who is going to run when you go the police force, and even judge's, who can manufacture anything against you they wish. A case for which when I pushed on Ms. Harris to speak to me about this case and helping this sex worker Ms. Harris simply just announced she's running for senate in response.
I've gone to the Pasadena Chief of Police in this case who ignored me until forced to talk to me who still hasn't asked me the name of the officer who threatened me in this case for trying to help this woman who called us for help. I've gone to Internal Affairs about this case who then had their records burned for the last five years above the objection of the mayor and the city council. Who are kind of mute right now on this because they're also dealing with $6,000,000 missing out of their budget. I've also gone to all your reporter friends to write a story about what's happening to this woman to bring some light to it in the hopes she might be able to find her freedom, and her son's, who all tell me they can't risk “angering” you over writing a story about this issue. Which again if you're such a “defender of sex workers” surprises me because she's one. A case you're very interestingly mute about I must say.
Then when I went and pushed on the Kamala's office to “do something” about this and to look at the evidence we had against these cops, the judge, and the traffickers – her response was to come after Pacifica Radio with a vengeance to get them shut down. A fact that didn't escape my attention because my ex-husband is on the board of that station. So in response to my standing up to her like Mitchell did – I now have California possibly losing a public radio station that was built with the idea in mind of “fighting the system” with exposing the truth about things like corruption. Are they connected? My ex-husband says if they want to keep the station and pass this audit they can't even risk having me call in on a show about the subject of trafficking let alone give me any air time on the station.
Now you're supposed to be such an advocate for sex workers – why aren't you doing anything about this woman's case? Oh that's right you don't care about minority trafficking victims. So much so that when you tried to get a proposition to decriminalize prostitution in 2008 passed you also tried to get a judge to remove the wording from the ballot that you ALSO wanted to defund services for minority trafficking victims at the same time. Victims just like this woman in Pasadena. http://archives.sfexaminer.com/sanfrancisco/keep-trafficking-out-of-city/Content?oid=2143391
Got it. An interesting choice. I mean not an unforeseen byproduct of your proposition – but one you wanted so deliberately that you even tried to hide this part from the voters? Probably why it got defeated though huh? I mean rather than drop it from the proposition – you lost the vote over it so it seems like it was pretty important to you that minority trafficking victims not get help for some reason. Who until they are allowed to quit ARE sex workers.
But my point being Maxine that I've now seen you repeatedly soliciting money from people who are active sex workers within the USA. Money that whether you get a cut or not the promotion of the fund raiser could technically be considered pandering on your part since I've seen you also promote active prostitution in the process of this – and the person you're asking to receive this money then becomes open for a possible felony pimping charge for receiving money from “known” prostitutes. This isn't cool. Especially when I see you taking no steps to protect anyone from basically well incriminating themselves this way.
I mean you are collecting an awful lot of banking information that anyone in law enforcement can just go and pick up from these fund raising sites. Another fact I haven't seen you address. One so important it's why we don't sell our Recovery Guide on Amazon – a fact that costs us a lot of money in sales but does protect our members' banking and identity information. Yes our members are out of sex work – but it's still a precaution I take for their safety based on sound legal advice.
You're doing this you say publicly because you “advocate” for sex workers. Women like Heather, the prostitute in West Virginia, that just killed that serial killer. http://www.cbsnews.com/news/woman-killed-alleged-serial-killer-neal-falls-recounts-final-fight/ Who is now supposedly so upset that she's holed up in her house not working. Your response? To put together another fund raiser which she'll get the money from in 30 days or so AFTER you're generated a lot of publicity for yourself, as well as support for your agenda.
However, cash in 30 days is not all that woman might need. By the way, a method I'm not seeing much difference between your doing and Shelley Lubben's since I'm seeing you do this with exactly the same amount of self-promotion as she does. I know when I reached out to make contact with her I didn't shout about it all over the internet because she may frankly not want anyone to know she's speaking to us – and I respect that. But this is one of the reasons why we research if there's any county or state programs who would pay their rent during such a time that doesn't cost anyone a dime. Then cash can be used for other purposes.
Because the truth also is that she may be forced out of the sex industry because of the media attention upon her. The police are all over her as well as the media watching everything she does. They even know she's not doing her own grocery shopping. It's going to be kind of hard to turn a trick with this kind of public light on her as well she might just frankly not feel like it. Now people going through a high profile case is something WE know how to walk someone through as it happened to me being one of the reasons I started the group. I also couldn't continue working what with LAPD and the media all over me in my high profile arrest where I got dubbed “The High Tech Madam”. www.hightechmadam.com To top it off I still had to find a way to satisfy my probation requirements AND to pay the rent at the same time AND emotionally deal with being forced out of the only profession I knew.
So when others who go through this have gone through this for 29 years now that our program's been around to help them walk through this type of thing we've reached out to them and provided help and support through a time that's very difficult in many ways. The only person I'm going to say we've done this for publicly is Jeane Palfrey because she has since deceased so I'm not violating a confidence. But it's a fact we've been doing it for many high profiled cases that have hit the news for 29 years now without seeing a hide nor hair of you around during these cases before.
Cases we've done quite well at making sure they are cared for emotionally by local members of SWA who have “been there', as well as other resources we can provide them such as attorney's who donate their services, as well as free entertainment lawyers who can help them navigate the many book and movie offers that tend to come their way during these periods of time. Since we don't get a cut of mention in any way there's no conflict of interest here. Plus if we'd done anything “inappropriate' to any of these women in the past – I'm sure we would have heard about it since everyone is just watching us carefully waiting for us to take a mis-step.
But now you have this lawsuit going in California – suddenly you're all over these cases and in the process trying to also “dissuade” a sex worker from availing themselves of the resources we can offer them when you don't even fully know what those services are. That is truly a disservice to them as well as possibly you're greatly harming them. I've said before that Kamylla with your help is now three months in and supposedly still has her rent not paid, no food, a flooded house, no job, and legal cases still pending – whereas these were problems we told her, and meant, back in April we could have solved that week had it not been for your jumping into the mix.
This is even more of a disservice than people realize when in the eyes of the law you're possibly setting people up in these fund raisers for yours for not only felony charges of pimping, you for charges of pandering, but also for money laundering and even racketeering charges because you're asking people you know are involved in illegal sex work to contribute cash and you're giving out phone numbers of one active sex worker to another for the purpose of raising money.
All things that are clearly spelled out in the law as illegal and in some cases a felony. If you doubt me – go and speak to your attorney's about what I'm saying. Because these are all reasons why we don't pass the basket at our meetings, as well as why we don't take any cut for any money or services we do serve as a “go between” for, and well why we only offer these services and donations to men and women EXITING the sex industry. It's even why we give our literature for free to new members so as we don't take the risk of violating the laws I'm talking about.
A choice to exit the industry they have the right to make as well as there might be people who like myself found themselves out of the industry by force of circumstances. I had someone in your group say to an associate of ours that we couldn't reach out to Heather because she “had the right to want to continue with sex work” like somehow we were going to try and talk her out of it. Well of course she does have the right to keep on doing whatever she wants in our eyes.
But she also might, just might, feel she wants to quit sex work after this. That's a choice she has to make and if she does choose it I want her to know we're here to offer help and support as well as guidance with that decision because currently I know of no other group that offers what we offer. Which also includes our acknowledgment that we can only help those who do make that choice.
She might also be frankly forced out of sex work by all this press. Something that trust me from my experience can be very difficult and all the more reason why she might need to talk to other EX-sex workers who have been in her shoes. Something she doesn't need your side of the fence threatening her with a lack of your support if she does choose to avail herself of some of the services we offer also. It's one thing that we have to hide our members' identity from the law - but it's not honestly gotten to the point where anyone coming to us for help the last few months is now HAVING TO HIDE THEIR IDENTITY FROM YOU.
This is not an “either or” situation Maxine. There is no reason why Kamyalla, if she so choose, or even Heather, or anyone else, can't get help from your faction AS WELL AS OURS if THEY CHOOSE to do so. However, you seem to be putting these people into a position of where you're telling them that if they do avail themselves of anything we offer, or even discuss it with one of our members, that you're going to pull out your support as well. That's control Maxine of them and manipulation and it's wrong.
Just as if any member of our program wanted to speak to you, or support your cause, I also wouldn't stand in the way. In fact, I've donated to your cause in the past myself personally Maxine. While SWA can't take a stand on anything political “officially” - I have supported your work in the past as well as you. Why? Because I've been saying the only way a trafficking victim can properly prosecute her trafficker, or pimp, or even a domestic violence abuser, is IF we can stop having sex work be a crime. In fact, the whole war between Melissa Farley, and her faction which include Gloria Steinem, was started when I said I would not advocate for "abolition" at the 2007 press conference we gave but in fact was standing by our need to decriminalize sex work in order for our community to receive help from the law, the courts, and in the eye of public opinion.
So again I don't know where this recent hostility is coming from – nor why you're putting sex workers into any position to choose anything when they need ALL the resources they can get. Including from people who are more experienced in certain things than you are, as well as things you can't even offer them such as alternative sentencing, diversion, help with probation, etc.
You can't stand up in an expungement hearing to testify that this person needs their record cleared so they can go and get a license to work after spending years in school towards that end. You can't offer alternative sentencing to someone arrested for prostitution in exchange for attending classes you hold. You also don't have a list of resources like we've gathered over almost three decades like names of companies who will hire someone from the sex industry, record or fame included. Something which sometimes for the purpose of probation needs to be done whether one likes it or not.
A list I don't think you're aware of or Kamylla would have a job by now. We know of three companies in Houston alone right now run by ex-sex workers who would not only hire her, and her husband, on the spot, but even stand up at an immigration hearing for her to help her stay in the country because of this arrest. If I'm wrong - then you tell me honestly if Kamylla could openly come to us for those referrals without incurring the full force of the wrath of your supporters against another sex worker simple if she did decide to come to us to get something you're not providing?
So Maxine – please on behalf of the best interests of sex workers, active and retiring, victims of trafficking or chosen career sex workers - please understand that we are not your enemy. We are not the opposition. This is not a war where we need to fighting with each other because the only people I see wanting that to happen is people like Brown and Miller who I believe are involved in fraudulent grant receipts as well as fund raising which I'm working now to investigate. Money that was meant for real victims that's not reaching them because of shows like “8 Minutes” and what's going on in Orange County and Long Beach right now.
Things like are you aware that the group D'Lita Miller is associated with is actually turning away help for sex workers under the age of 18 according to one article I read because of the mistaken belief that “no resources exist” when they ignored resources from groups such as Children of the Niht, Covenant House, the Dream Center, and oh yes our members. That's harming our charges who need us working together. http://www.ocregister.com/articles/trafficking-599120-beach-long.html
Now granted I know Heather is in a very difficult position but Heather is also a woman capable of defending herself clearly. I ask you what about this 15 year old girl that was just found being pimped by a 16 year old pimp in San Luis Obispo a few days ago? What about the fact that boy is going to be charged as an adult by a new law – when clearly there must be an adult somewhere law enforcement isn't going after before discussing trying this kid as an adult. Now those are two kids in need of some help Maxine who aren't capable of defending themselves and are being victimized by the system. http://calcoastnews.com/2015/07/alleged-16-year-old-pimp-identified/ I saw that poor young woman's face plastered all over the media as a “prostitute” and when I was writing the press asking them to take her photo down I didn't have all this wonderful support of the sex worker community you do clearly have.
A support I invite you to consider needs to be welded just a bit more in mind of the fact we are not on opposite sides of these issues Maxine. That is if you are in fact totally and solely on the side of the sex workers that is. Please think about what I'm saying carefully for their sake. Because they're the ones who lose if this war you'r creating continues.
Can't we all just get along? Thank you for listening.